The Muzzled Russian Press
Michael Idov is a contributing writer at New York Magazine and the editor-in-chief of RUSSIA!, an English-language quarterly highlighting Russian art and design. He moved to the U.S. from the former U.S.S.R. at the age of 16, settling in Cleveland before moving to New York. After a degree in film studies from the University of Michigan, Michael embarked on a series of odd jobs that included anchoring a Russian news program and owning a failed coffee house, and ended with his joining the staff of New York. His writing has appeared in outlets as diverse as Slate, Vogue, Pitchfork Media, NPR, the New Republic and (in his native Russian) Moscow's Bolshoi Gorod. Idov's on-and-off band Spielerfrau, playing what the New Yorker dubbed "sophisticated, reverb-drenched rock with intelligent lyrics," is set to release its second LP in April 2008. His first novel, "Ground Up," will be published in early 2009 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux.
"I wholeheartedly blame Russian journalists themselves."
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Infographics show the classes and anxieties in the supposedly classless U.S. economy.
For those of us who follow politics, we’re used to commentators referring to the President’s low approval rating as a surprise given the U.S.'s “booming” economy. This seeming disconnect, however, should really prompt us to reconsider the measurements by which we assess the health of an economy. With a robust U.S. stock market and GDP and low unemployment figures, it’s easy to see why some think all is well. But looking at real U.S. wages, which have remained stagnant—and have, thus, in effect gone down given rising costs from inflation—a very different picture emerges. For the 1%, the economy is booming. For the rest of us, it’s hard to even know where we stand. A recent study by Porch (a home-improvement company) of blue-collar vs. white-collar workers shows how traditional categories are becoming less distinct—the study references "new-collar" workers, who require technical certifications but not college degrees. And a set of recent infographics from CreditLoan capturing the thoughts of America’s middle class as defined by the Pew Research Center shows how confused we are.
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