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Greetings internet friend,
Have a seat. Get relaxed. Take off your shoes. Actually, you need to put those back on immediately.
Would you like a nice little glass of chacha? Of course you would.
Now that you’re snug as a bug, I’d like to announce Edward Slavsquat’s Sustainable Development Goals for 2023 (blog-related news, updates, and policy reminders).
Yes, very exciting stuff.
Edward’s Agenda 2023
For new readers to the blog, I encourage you to read The History and Purpose of Edward Slavsquat.
Blog-output has not been consistent in the last few months. Bursts of productivity, followed by unacceptable periods of silence.
I think a sustainable output level is 3-4 posts a week, plus a weekend open thread. I’m working on it.
The famous weekend open thread has died and been resurrected about five different times now. I’m going to keep it really basic going forward.
Veteran Slavsquat readers will remember that the original weekly open thread was crowned “At least we have each other”, and I am reverting to this title for the sake of simplicity and consistency. The weekly open thread will be a link-dump in the truest sense of the word, without any pageantry.
It will also be an opportunity for me to share links from fellow bloggers and writers whom I respect and admire.
There is a lot happening in Russia these days. Too much, actually. I really want to focus on providing in-depth coverage on topics that aren’t getting the attention they deserve in the English-language blog world.
I will not be able to cover everything, and I encourage you to go directly to Russian sources to fulfill your Russia-related News cravings.
Please do not feel shy about exploring the Russian-language media ecosystem. It is a very interesting place. I wrote a short guide if you need help getting started.
I am also very excited about my ongoing interview series, “A conversation with…”. It’s been a great success, in my humble opinion, and I’m always looking for people who are willing to answer my Russia-related questions.
If you have suggestions for future interviewees, let me know in the comments section. Or if you think you might have a unique perspective to offer, drop me an email. Maybe we can talk.
Also, if you’ve tried to email me in the past, and have received no answer, please know there is a 95% chance that your email slipped by me. I get all kinds of Substack-related e-messages, and I am a horribly disorganized person, and well… you get the idea.
The best way for you to reach me is to send a separate email, with some kind of eye-catching subject line, like: “Edward, FREE TACOS.”
You can find my email address on the “About” page of this blog.
Do not respond directly to the newsletter-posts you receive from me. I almost never see them—they get lost in the sea of Substack stuff I get every day.
A very big thank you to my devastatingly handsome & elegant paid subscribers
I don’t say this nearly enough, so now I am saying it: I am truly and eternally grateful to readers who have backed this blog with their hard-earned dollars, rubles, pesos, Ken Griffey Jr. baseball cards, and so forth.
I am well aware that there are many, many talented writers out there in the vast Interwebs who are worthy of your support, and it really means a lot to me that some of you said: “Yes, okay, I guess I’ll give this weirdo a few of my clams.”
From the bottom of my weird heart, thank you.
To help show my gratitude, I have some very fun Paywalled Exclusives coming soon.
If you don’t want to miss out, you know what to do!
I will also be doing another Q&A in the near future. I know I didn’t answer all the questions from the last Q&A; this time it will be in text form. The video responses are just too time-consuming.
This time I promise (for real) that I will answer each and every question, with delicacy and extreme care. Question-asking will be reserved for paying subscribers, but my answers will be available to everyone. We’ll see how this format goes. Maybe I will open it up to everyone if there aren’t enough questions. Stay tuned.
I will never give you my phone number. Never-ever (so please be on the lookout for scammers)
A few months ago, Substack was assaulted by a scammer who created various spoof accounts, including a spoof account of your favorite Substack writer, Edward Slavsquat.
This scammer then spammed the comments section of this blog with a phone number and an invitation to message him (well, we shouldn’t assume his gender) about some kind of brilliant business opportunity.
Guys, first of all: If I were business-savvy, I would not be blogging. Think about it.
Secondly, I am a seasoned introvert and an incorrigible agoraphobe. I’m not the kind of person who gives out his telephone number, all willy-nilly.
I will only give my phone number to Audrey Hepburn, and I’m pretty sure she’s mega-dead.
Anyway, I’m telling you this because if this scammer reappears, please do not get roped into his/her/it/zer scam.
Also, Audrey: call me.
Reminder: Please don’t poop in the pool (pooping will be severely punished)
I would like to remind you all of Edward Slavsquat’s commenting policy, which was ratified by me in a historic, unanimous 1-0 vote in September 2022:
This blog would be a sad place without the input, observations and counter-arguments put forward by anonymous internet people.
What I think makes “our” comments section unique is that you can usually find a wide range of viewpoints—from observers located all over the world—and, for the most part, we all continue to peacefully coexist on the internet.
This is very unusual! In many parts of the internet—especially in “pro-Russia” corners of the web—any kind of deviation from the Approved Narrative is met with howls and accusations of CIA shilling.
Let’s not do this, friends. It’s 100% A-OK to disagree and offer counter-arguments and different perspectives—in fact, this is most welcome here at Slavsquat—but please keep your comments ideas-focused and refrain from futile, highly speculative, and bad-karma personal attacks.
If you have beef with another commenter, just ignore them or settle it “off-blog”. If you think someone has their facts wrong, please address the facts, and not the person.
We have a nice pool for internet people to swim in. Maybe one of the best pools ever.
Please don’t poop in the pool.
I am a free speech absolutist. I have never once censored or punished a commenter for their views—no matter how “politically incorrect” or “controversial” they may be (I put those words in scare quotes, because whether or not an opinion is approved by Responsible People With PayPal Accounts is irrelevant and meaningless).
But the free and open exchange of ideas does not include the right to ad hominem howling and other forms of personal attacks that add absolutely nothing of value to the discussion.
There is no reason to get personal with anonymous commenters on the internet. In fact, these kinds of interactions probably make many cherished blog-readers think twice about commenting—which is very bad.
I want everyone to have the opportunity to share their views and perspectives, without fear of being internet-hazed.
FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, IF YOU ARE INCAPABLE OF DISCUSSING IDEAS WITHOUT FLINGING POO AT TOTAL STRANGERS, PLEASE STOP COMMENTING ON THIS BLOG.
Anyway, the past is the past. We all need a fresh start from time to time, and so I have decided to implement a Great Commenting Reset.
As of today, the Second of June, MMXXIII A.D., I consider the Edward Slavsquat commenter’s pool clean and sparkly.
Any past pooping infractions have been forgotten—let us never speak of them again, or even make vague references to them. It’s all poopy water under the bridge.
So put on your inflatable armband-things and flop around in Edward’s crystalline and dangerously chlorinated pool water.
Please, please, PLEASE—I’m serious, please—do not make me have to play Comments Section Hall Monitor. That would make me grumpy.
I hope I have made my position clear, and please know that I value your insightful comments, and I love you.