Talk:Vladimir Putin/Archive 3

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Chechen Invasion & KGB History in Initial Paragraphs

I agree that these are important things to discuss in this article, but they do need moved into the appropriate section, rather than clogging the intro. Discuss. Ender78 (talk) 17:07, 7 May 2008 (UTC)

"2nd Russian President" or "Former President of Russia"

Another editor changed a couple things relating to the precise verbiage of Putin's notability vis a vis being a former President of Russia. Since US Presidents are generally denoted by their order, I've reverted and preserved my original edits on that front. Ender78 (talk) 06:25, 7 May 2008 (UTC)

"Vladimir... is the president"

Is he? I thought that there's a new one?

There is now. Edited. Ender78 (talk) 06:25, 7 May 2008 (UTC)

The article's length

I do not really know how imperative the tag about the article being too long actually is, but i suspect it really is. I should suggest we branch out some (or one big) section as is the case with most detailed articles (See George Bush). To my mind, the easiest option is to transfer the section on the foreign policy into the already-existing article - Foreign relations of Russia.Muscovite99 (talk) 17:49, 12 February 2008 (UTC)

I now see that the material is already there, thus we have duplication thereof. Please react.Muscovite99 (talk) 17:51, 12 February 2008 (UTC)
I do feel the article is too long also. The "foreign policy" section is I think the longest, so it is an obvious low hanging fruit. What we could do would be to move the content into a separate article, and leave in Vladimir Putin article a good summary and reference to the "main" article. This is a pretty standard procedure in Wikipedia as far as I know.
I do not think Foreign relations of Russia is necessarily the same topic. I think Putin's policies is a considerably narrower one. :::Kulikovsky (talk) 19:13, 24 May 2008 (UTC)

Stop White Washing the Talk Page

It is one thing to archive portions of a talk page... the oldest portions. It is quite another to white wash the whole talk page, as Muscovite99 has done twice now. I have never seen this done any where else in Wikipedia, and it is inappropriate. Frjohnwhiteford (talk) 12:50, 13 February 2008 (UTC)

As i can see you are simply expressing your private opinion, which i can presume is due to bad mood or perhaps undernourishment. What is inappropriate is your language (such as "whitewashing") and undue personal attacks. I am archiving the past discussion that is not being discussed. A perfectly legitimate procedure.Muscovite99 (talk) 16:43, 14 February 2008 (UTC)
I agree with Frjohnwhiteford. Muscovite99, please note that guesses like "due to bad mood or perhaps undernourishment" is nothing else but personal attack. Whereas "white washing" is quite appropriate. It is a stretch to call use of words "white wash" a personal attack. There are archival guidelines, so Frjohnwhiteford expressed the opinion of the community. (talk) 13:29, 16 February 2008 (UTC)

Wiki Foo

Hi All

As I view it when you click show on the Russia Chechen Conflict box at the bottom, you have to click show again in the next line to actually see the table. When you click hide it also hides the Times Person of the Year box. Does everyone have this problem? Can someone who better understands boxs fix it please?



CaptinJohn (talk) 17:19, 18 February 2008 (UTC)


The image is changing almost each day. We should, at last, choose something.

My vote. His face is seen there well and right in front, as it is used for most of portraits in bio articles. (George W. Bush, Hillary Clinton, Angela Merkel as examples)Garret Beaumain (talk) 20:34, 18 February 2008 (UTC)

Not bad, but the photo is taken from the side.

Don't like this one. He apears too "funny" there. And it's not an face, but rather a 3/4.

We need a picture of Putin showing his whole face, and some of his upper body would also be nice. I personally hate the picture that we currently have, and I don't think it represents Putin. Apart from that its not really a good photograph. (talk) 04:08, 28 March 2008 (UTC)
The background is too "dreamy". It seems like joke now, and his facial expression doesn't help! Mr. E. Sánchez (talk) 21:54, 27 April 2008 (UTC)

putin's children

not sure if anyone has noticed, but according to the wiki-summary of putin, one of his children is britney spear's sister.. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:27, 23 February 2008 (UTC)

Nice coverage on


Dpotop (talk) 15:44, 25 February 2008 (UTC)


This article reads like a birthday card to Putin from the FSB. Nuqe (talk) 07:41, 27 February 2008 (UTC)Nuqe 2.26.08

  • Rather, the article cites too many negative bias, as do articles on most of historical and official persons from Russia. Too many editors are trying to write only on how anti-democratic this persons are, in their opinion. This article, howewer, is well referenced and sticks to facts predominantly. Garret Beaumain (talk) 18:23, 27 February 2008 (UTC)

there couldbe a criticism of vladimir putin page just like of george bush, however I don't know what happens to those pages once they arent president anymore, and with putin that will happen soon - although only on paper ;) - - PietervHuis (talk) 02:57, 1 March 2008 (UTC)

The article is too long because we needed to NPOV by including all POVs. We need a new perspective, eg an opinion by a neutral Western observer. Unfortunately, I myself only have Dutch language sources here. "Poetins Erfdeel" (=Putin's Legacy) by Marie-Thérèse ter Haar, a professor of Slavic languages, may be a good start-off. Because of this blog entry where a reader criticised Ter Haar for being too pro-Putin and referred to Koen Schoors, a professor of economics who knows Russia from a non-political angle, I had a look for this Koen Schoors. The Belgian newspaper De Morgen, on February 29 (page 16) published an interview with him. Perhaps - PietervHuis can find a library near his home which stocks the newspaper or has an electronic subscription (it is a Dutch language newspaper, after all). Alternatively, people may be able to download this (could later be asking for a password, though, as it is the online version, the PDF version on the left of the name of the interviewing journalist will not load, I suppose - for those who can load it, the Dutch title means "Specialist on Russia: Europe ignores all signs of Russian goodwill"). Note that Koen Schoors also includes some criticism. Lack of press freedom is one (may be a problem to NPOV because, in my humble opinion, it is the direct result of Putin's actions against the oligarchs, who before him controlled all media in Russia - but can we source that?). Schoors (in this interview at least) does not mention Putin's St Petersburg connections, which constitute a notable fact, if only because it illustrates Putin's history as a poacher turned gendarme or game keeper (may explain part of his popularity, by the way). Schoors also holds the controversial opinion (controversial because here both Putin haters and Putin fans seem to believe he is popular because of the Chechnya war) that the Chechnya war is still very unpopular with ordinary Russians, and that Putin is popular despite of the war. I suppose the contrary POV will not be difficult to source ;>). --Paul Pieniezny (talk) 09:32, 5 March 2008 (UTC)

Former president?

He's still the President of Russia until Medvedev actually takes power, isn't he? Fishal (talk) 07:10, 3 March 2008 (UTC)

  • Yes, he is still the president until the beginning of May Alex Bakharev (talk) 07:18, 3 March 2008 (UTC)

Prime Minister-designate?

Also we should remove the Prime Minister-designate section from the Infobox & succession box. As Medvedev hasn't nominated Putin for prime minister (he can't until he becomes President). GoodDay (talk) 20:58, 5 March 2008 (UTC)

  • Who brought it back? I thought, it was removed two days ago. Garret Beaumain (talk) 22:42, 5 March 2008 (UTC)

Please Electrobe, discuss it here first. Your refusal to do so, could be viewed as uncivil. GoodDay (talk) 21:10, 6 March 2008 (UTC)

Beslan mentioned only once and in literally two words? No mention of Moscow gas attack and Kursk disaster at all?

Amazing. Well, maybe he right when saying nothing bad happened during his term, after all. (Oh, no matter thousands people killed in Chechnya, almost all of them Russian citiziens, it was a great success.)

Here's an article for you:[1] It's an example. Or just google for "kursk" and "putin". -- (talk) 12:13, 16 March 2008 (UTC)

  • When you write about what happened during someone's term in office in article on a person, you should write not on a epoch, but on a person. His actions, his personal responsibility. People who massacred Beslan children are responsible for the action, and those who organized it. Putin's involvement was limited - he just sent troops to free them (more correctly, it was interior minister). And his involvement in Kursk disaster was none - he neither sent nor sunk this ship. Or should we make any article on any leader a list of didsasters that accured when they were in office? Garret Beaumain (talk) 20:50, 17 March 2008 (UTC)
It is not about these incidents just happening during his rule out of bad luck, but about how they were handled and why they were able to occur. Putin, being the head government official and the one whose job it is to enforce the laws of the constitution, is also responsible for what happened. (talk) 20:47, 10 April 2008 (UTC)

Formatting of References and Notes section

I am removing the following <div style="height: 300px; overflow: auto; padding: 3px; border:1px solid #AAAAAA; reflist4" > from the top of the References and Notes section. On my computer it creates weird display for the with two vertical scroll bars on the right and one (disabled) horizontal scroll bar in the bottom. It certainly is not helpful. Anyway I think that all non-standard page formatting are not suitable for the article space. We should strive to format articles uniformly Alex Bakharev (talk) 12:22, 19 March 2008 (UTC)


The article was marked as lacking a proper introduction. I've created one, but I aware it would be too long and requires to be shortened. As for now it's in comments. Any ideas of how to make it in a nutshell?Garret Beaumain (talk) 18:43, 7 April 2008 (UTC)

A former KGB agent in East Germany, he served as vice-mayor of St. Petersburg under Anatoly Sobchak in the 1990's and was briefly the head of FSB in 1998-99. He came to high power positions in September 1999, when he was appointed Prime Minister by president Boris Yeltsin. Following the success in deflection of Invasion of Dagestan in Second Chechen war, Putin's popularity in Russia rose to let him win the 2000 presidential elections with 52% of support. As of 2008, he remains the most popular politician in Russia, according to opinion polls.

Under the Putin administration, Russia's economy continued to develop, recovering after the 1998 financial crisis. It saw increases in GDP, industrial and agricultural production, the volume of consumer credit,[1][2] and other economic measures. A number of large-scale reforms in retirement, banking, tax, the monetization of benefits and others have taken place.

During Vladimir Putin's presidency there were concerns among observers about democracy, media freedom and human rights in modern Russia. Under Putin, many Yelstin-era business oligarchs like Boris Berezovsky and Mikhail Khodorkovsky were put under trial of corruption and either exiled or imprisoned, some of the media they own have went under state control. Success of United Russia party, which intergated several pro-Kremlin centrist parties, in parliamental elections led Putin to control of State Duma.

In foreign policy, Putin used to keep more hard-line and pragmatic positions than his precedor. He supported 2001 invasion of Afghanistan, but was highly critical to 2003 invasion of Iraq and USA plans of missile deployment in Eastern Europe. One of the major concerns of Putin’s foreign policy was energy policy. He aimed to increase Russia’s influence on world’s natural gas and oil markets. Together with former German cancellor Gerhard Schröder, he is a vocal advocate of Northern Gas Pipeline project.

In 2008 presidential elections, Putin expresed support to his ally, deputy prime minister Dmitry Medvedev. After Medvedev was elected President on March, 2, Putin is widely expected to be appointed to prime minister chair once again.

Mikoyan, we all like VVP, but don't you make intro way too long and non-neutral? (it was already too long - compare to three paragraphs in George W. Bush) Putin is widely credited with restoring order, stability and prosperity to Russia after the wrenching depression and lawlessness of the post-Soviet era - I can personally agree, but it fit for Boris Gryzlov speech, not encyclopedic article. And certainly, State Duma is controlled with his ally parties.Garret Beaumain (talk) 13:48, 12 April 2008 (UTC)

Please discuss what additions I made that you think are non neutral as they were all factual. Putin is widely credited with restoring order, stability and prosperity to Russia after the wrenching depression and lawlessness of the post-Soviet era - the fact that he is widely credited with this is undisputed and in fact the reason why he is so popular in Russia. Even Time Magazine said this when they gave him the person of the year award - If Russia succeeds as a nation-state in the family of nations, it will owe much of that success to one man, Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin., Putin has put his country back on the map. - he has performed an extraordinary feat of leadership in imposing stability on a nation that has rarely known it and brought Russia back to the table of world power., etc, etc. Putin is not a member of any party, sure, a number of parties support him but that is not to say he "controls" them, indeed you could say that they control him. Also, "One of the major concerns of Putin’s foreign policy was energy policy: he aimed to increase Russia’s influence on the world’s natural gas and oil markets" - who said? I agree that the intro looks large and perhaps we can work to reduce it, but Russia has really undergone a huge transformation under Putin and there is a lot more to say about his presidency than Bush's for example.--Miyokan (talk) 00:41, 13 April 2008 (UTC)
"Putin quickly became popular with many Russians for his September invasion of Chechnya in response to terrorism and the invasion of Dagestan by Chechen militants""
1) the apartment bombings werent blamed on chechens, and its not proven it was done by militants
2) they werent "chechen militants" but a mixture of Dagestani, Chechen, other caucasians and arab fighters.
3) your introduction is too long
I support Garret Beaumain's version it's more neutral and shorter. (but I do not wish to start an edit-war) - PietervHuis (talk) 09:25, 13 April 2008 (UTC)
Intro really has to become thinner, down below at WP:LEAD you can see examples of introductions that are too long and perfect. There's many details in it that are best to be kept for the rest of the article. George W. Bush has a very good introduction we can take that as an example. - PietervHuis (talk) 02:36, 14 April 2008 (UTC)

Questionable Source

The sources 11 is quite questionable. 11 is that of an anti-communist organization. It would naturally make sense for them to label Vladmir Putin as KGB as it would work towards their own POV. Consider deleting this source reference as it can be argued to have a biased perspective.

-- (talk) 00:32, 11 April 2008 (UTC)

Divorce and Planned Second Marriage???

According to the newspaper Moskovsky Korrespondent [2] Putin is already two months divorced and plans to marry Alina Kabaeva. Do we have to include the info or wait for more sources? Alex Bakharev (talk) 04:32, 14 April 2008 (UTC)

If it is an Orthodox April Fools' day joke, as I first thought, it is fooling a number of people around the world, apart from a Polish internet forum ([3]):[4] and [5]. I rather like the remark of her father, who seems to prefer Putin to Medvedev as his son-in-law. One reason to stay careful: has this girl not been claimed before to be betrothed to someone who turned out to be already married? --Paul Pieniezny (talk) 15:33, 15 April 2008 (UTC)
And this is funny: RFE mentioning Kabayeva as close to Putin, but in other versions on the internet (taken over by other sites, I guess) you can read "who is also believed to be a friennd of Putin". Strange, did they suspect something? Or have they just re-edited(into "close"), because they do not want to appear to be the ones who started the rumour? they should not worry. The British Sun put Putin and "his new babes" (with "suggestive" photo of Kabayeva, almost worthy of page three) on the same page some months ago. --Paul Pieniezny (talk) 15:56, 15 April 2008 (UTC)
OK, though Google news still does not mention it (no news googles on "Putin Kaba(y)eva"), this morning the Belgian Dutch newspaper De Morgen had a short article on it, saying "A Russian tabloid has broken a well-conserved taboo by reporting that the lame-duck president VP (55) and his wife L have been divorced for some time. According to Moskovsky Korrespondent the president wants to marry the 24-year old former Olympic gymnast Alina Kabayeva. The Kremin declines to comment." (followed by a short paragraph on Kabayeva and the furosemide testing and the assertion that the news is based on the words of someone who is preparing for the ceremony) De Morgen is definitely not a tabloid, and their website version (hoping people can access this, even though it is in Dutch) quotes the very reliable and rather old school Belgian News Agency Belga so perhaps we have indeed passed the threshold now - if we like them say "according to a Russian tabloid"?
Actually, if it had not been in the serious papers this morning, I had planned to mention as another argument for considering this a canard that in Dutch the word "scheidend" may be used both for someone who is going through a divorce and for a lame-duck president (that last one is a neologism). I thought that was funny, perhaps there are other languages in which this is the case? German? Russian? --Paul Pieniezny (talk) 07:42, 16 April 2008 (UTC)
It is all over the Belgian press now (in Dutch you write "Poetin", which may explain why google news still does not find anything) and the German Bild Zeitung also has it. Italian La Repubblica is quoted as having it. I think now, that even if it may not be true (every single reference, except perhaps that gymnastics site seems to be from Moskovsky Korrespondent), we have noteworthiness now. --Paul Pieniezny (talk) 08:00, 16 April 2008 (UTC)

As everyone who googled the story recently will have noticed, there are some who claim that the relationship between AK and VVP has been a well-kept and well-known secret since ... 2000, and some who claim that at least the wedding story is a canard. This is the best version of the latter set I have been able to find (sorry, it is in German): check for the chapter "Auch Du, mein Sohn Brutus …". Unfortunately, it is a blog, so what is there cannot yet be added to the text. The "ever since 2000" story is even less mentionable because of BLP.--Paul Pieniezny (talk) 15:01, 17 April 2008 (UTC)


Do we really need such a huge lead with the almost complete resume starting from the education over all the position he held? It just duplicats the biographe section. Also do we need a long POVed evaluation of his work as president? It is warranted to be controversial. Can we just say Putin is the second Russian president 2000-2008? Alex Bakharev (talk) 10:25, 14 April 2008 (UTC)

Ahaha Miyokan I liked how you reverted all my edits with the reason how it's supposed to be my own personal bias. That wasn't the reason, just that you're pretty bad at writing leads, stuff like how he's "intelligent, tough, and hard-working" really doesn't belong there. I'm glad you realize the introduction is wrong, but now you've replaced it with one that is too short (per WP:LEAD) so I'll restore the one Garret Beaumain made. - PietervHuis (talk) 12:03, 14 April 2008 (UTC)
PietervHuis please take it somewhere else. Wikipedia is not a battleground. Your biased editing and constant trolling are unappreciated and not helpful at all for the wiki community. Krawndawg (talk) 18:36, 14 April 2008 (UTC)
Coming from you that makes me laugh. It's exactly what you've been doing recently. - PietervHuis (talk) 20:16, 14 April 2008 (UTC)
Pieter, Wikipedia is not a battleground, this is not the place for you to express your political biases. I reinstated the lead since Pietervhuis decided to reinsert his version which is almost word for word the same as the "Brief biography" section.--Miyokan (talk) 10:59, 15 April 2008 (UTC)
Miyokan, Wikipedia is not a battleground, this is not the place for you to express your political biases. I didn't insert "my" version but one made by another. The "brief biography" section was created by you recently and now the intro is too long again, and now there's two introductions. But whatever if you want it to be a mess, so be it. - PietervHuis (talk) 12:19, 15 April 2008 (UTC)
Coming back here after some time, I agree with the viewpoint that the lead is way too long. Say where he was born and why he is noteworthy. An inline reference to the "alternative" Georgian version about his origins should start from the lead as well. All the other personal things belong in the biography. And as he is leaving soon, the article will need trimming. If he really is marrying this gymnast, a lot of the other things mentioned here (like that little boy's belly thing) pale in comparison and should go under WP:UNDUE. Surely, in five years' time people will still remember the gymnast's story, but a few of these other "big" facts and/or controversies would never be mentioned in a normal encyclopedia. --Paul Pieniezny (talk) 10:17, 16 April 2008 (UTC)

Garret's version is frankly not as well written and has many mistakes -

Following the success in deflection of Invasion of Dagestan and Second Chechen war, Putin's popularity in Russia rose to let him win the 2000 presidential elections - this is saying that the reason he won the election was because of the this which of course is purely speculative.

Under the Putin administration, Russia's economy continued to develop. - firstly the economy only began to develop in 1999, when he was appointed Prime Minister and was acting President. Secondly, "continued to develop" implies that the economy developed under Yeltsin, which of course is not true as GDP declined far more than it increased.

The success of the pro-Kremlin centrist United Russia party in parliamental elections led Putin to control of State Duma. - as explained earlier.

One of the major concerns of Putin’s foreign policy was energy policy. - Nope. Where did you get this from?--Miyokan (talk) 05:43, 17 April 2008 (UTC)

I've added links you have ruined with your edit war.Garret Beaumain (talk) 17:47, 17 April 2008 (UTC)
He won a lot of popularity with the campaign, in russia, your version says so too. You can change it to "helped him win the elections" if that bothers you for example. You've replaced it with your own introduction again which is a bit on the big side, and includes a lot of details that are best to be kept out of the lead and elaborated on in the rest of the article. - PietervHuis (talk) 16:07, 17 April 2008 (UTC)

Failed "good article" nomination

This article failed good article nomination. This is how the article, as of April 15, 2008, compares against the six good article criteria:

1. Well written?: Fail, needs consistency throughout
2. Factually accurate?: Fail, needs many more references using cite templates
3. Broad in coverage?: Pass
4. Neutral point of view?: Possible fail, I do not know much about Russia, however, some of these things could be in violation of NPOV
5. Article stability? Fail, look at the length of the talk page!
6. Images?: Pass

This article will need a lot of work before another GAN. Even then, because of its instability, it may not pass.

When these issues are addressed, the article can be renominated. If you feel that this review is in error, feel free to take it have it reassessed. Thank you for your work so far.— Southern Illinois SKYWARN (talk) 02:47, 15 April 2008 (UTC)

Factually inaccurate? Hmmm... Is 290+ references not enough? Cfeet77 (talk) 14:28, 6 May 2008 (UTC)


Hallelujah! They made Vova do it! He is United Russia member [6]. Garret Beaumain (talk) 12:27, 15 April 2008 (UTC)

Denial by Alina Kabayeva?

A number of Russian blogs are now saying that Kabayeva's spokeswoman has said "We will not comment, but if Moskovsky Korrespondent does not print a denial by Wednesday/Thursday, we will sue".

However, today the British Independent says

When the newspaper's journalists contacted Ms Kabayeva's spokeswoman this week, she told them she had to think before replying. Several hours later, she responded that Ms Kabayeva had no comment.
"We are not going to comment on this nonsense," the spokeswoman said when contacted by The Independent yesterday. When asked whether or not Mr Putin and Ms Kabayeva were friends, she paused before saying that any questions should be addressed to the presidential press service.

([7]) Does not sound like threatening to sue. However, my gut feeling still is that the marriage part is a canard (utka). Any believable good source reporting Kabayeva or her spokeswoman threatening to sue, should in my view be immediately quoted and a phrase about it added to that short paragraph.

Under BLP concerns, I suggest it is perhaps better to replace the Telegraph quote by the Independent one. The Telegraph is sometimes felt to be a bit too sensationalist anyway (in other countries than the UK, its style would classify it as a semi-tabloid). --Paul Pieniezny (talk) 07:37, 18 April 2008 (UTC)

Putin vs. dobby the house elf?

2. Q. In a 2003 BBC online poll, more than 7,000 respondents agreed that Dobby the House Elf, as depicted in the movie adaptation of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, bore a striking resemblance to what world leader?

  A. Vladimir Putin 


Where would this information go? Duinemerwen (talk) 01:43, 22 April 2008 (UTC)

Well, the info on Pope Benedict and Harry Potter (that is also a question in that quizz) is included in an article called Theology of Pope Benedict XVI, so, obviously and logically, your info belongs in an article Physiognomy of Vladimir Putin - I wish you good luck with that article but hope you will find a better source, for a quizz questionnaire about a poll (an online poll even, and you know how that can be manipulated) does not look very trustworthy. No, this is not a joke, since there have been others trying to put info about his physiognomy in this article. And this one is obviously far less notable than his height. Sorry. --Paul Pieniezny (talk) 12:39, 22 April 2008 (UTC)

What would be more noticeable is that he was NOT AMUSED by this comparison, so it was reported on the news. I don't remember what he said or did exactly but it made me laugh. - PietervHuis (talk) 17:13, 28 April 2008 (UTC)


  • The introduction section of the article after having been recently significantly expanded is now a one-side subjective presentation of the Kremlin spin on the matter. Either it should cite facts and facts alone (now it contains cherry-picked opinions and assessments), or it should revert to its original brief version. The statement «Putin moved to curb the political ambitions of the notorious oligarchs, who were extremely unpopular with the Russian public and commonly thought to be one of the main causes of the troubled times» should go straight to the WP:NPOV page as a beautiful example of gross violation thereof.Muscovite99 (talk) 18:29, 29 April 2008 (UTC)
Like the fact that poverty halved while Putin was in power? Or the fact that the economy bounced back during his time in office? These are facts, not opinions. Is it NPOV to add both point of views regarding what critics say about democracy under Putin? It seems you have an axe to grind about Putin, this isn't a problem of NPOV.
Are you disputing that the oligarchs were disliked? Because I can provide many, many sources that say they're hated and often blamed for the hard times. It's a commonly held belief, just because you don't like it doesn't mean it's POV. Can you provide any credible sources that say otherwise? Krawndawg (talk) 18:35, 29 April 2008 (UTC)
What you have written does not address a single word of my argument. I am not "disputing that the oligarchs were disliked?" -- I am disputing the neutrality of the presentation of the material (NPOV demands that all assertions should be presented as somebody's opinions -- not facts: «Assert facts, including facts about opinions—but do not assert the opinions themselves»). And also, and in this case more importantly, i very much doubt that any sorts of assessments (especially so so disputable as just mentioned above) should be in the introduction section of the article. For that, there is a few lengthy sections already full of all sorts of opinions. Your argument essentially is that the opnions you prefer should go at the top and the rest to the bottom of the page, which at the vry least is in breach of Wikipedia:Neutral point of view#Undue weight. I am tempted to repeat your comment you have left attached to one of edits: «Grind your axe elsewhere»[9].Muscovite99 (talk) 18:52, 29 April 2008 (UTC)
If you think that is my argument, you are grossly mistaken. I don't favor one opinion over the other, I only included the most widely agreed upon opinion because it's just that. The fact that the oligarchs are disliked by most Russians is an important, factual piece of information. The reason its important is because a lot of Putins popularity was gained from "dealing" with them, like a superhero deals with a villain. If we don't know that these people were viewed by most Russians as villains, it seems hardly relevant to even mention anything at all about them. Krawndawg (talk) 19:02, 29 April 2008 (UTC)
I wonder what criterion have you for ascertaining «the most widely agreed upon opinion» -- this just your opinion, i.e. original research. The very term "oligarch" in this usage is utterly unscientific and slangy, let alone biased and filled with propaganda emotions. The Russians know very little about Putin's oligarchs who are in the dozens and worth tens of billions. And the fact that they are not presented by Russian media as "oligarchs", in and of itself, speaks volumes to the state Russia is in.Muscovite99 (talk) 19:21, 29 April 2008 (UTC)
Like I said, I can provide you with many, many articles that say the oligarchs were/are extremely unpopular. For example, the article linked in this article says:[10] "and that they were about as popular with your average Russian as a man idly burning bundles of £50s outside an orphanage ".
Now regarding the "new" oligarchs you speak of, there is a very simple logic as to why they are not referred to as oligarchs in the same sense as the old ones were. Because the country is thriving, the middle class is expanding, poverty is dropping, living standards are rising, and jobs are being created, not lost. All of those things were the exact opposite during Yeltins rule. Many people blamed the oligarchs for "draining" the country which lead to these conditions. Obviously that's not happening right now, so while there may be a group of extremely wealthy people with close ties to the Kremlin, they are not the cause of any such turmoil and therefor not viewed as villains, just wealthy people. Krawndawg (talk) 19:30, 29 April 2008 (UTC)
It doesn't though, does it? It says
"Putin, able to see matters rather straighter than Yeltsin, realised two crucial things about the oligarchs: that they were potentially more powerful than him, and that they were about as popular with your average Russian as a man idly burning bundles of £50s outside an orphanage"'
I don't think anyone can seriously expect us to believe that this journalist could have known that Putin had exactly that particular realisation or thought about the oligarchs. It's either an expression the journalist made up to convey a point via the use of a (very extremist) analogy or it's a repetition of something in the BBC program "Russian Godfathers", which is what that article you referenced is really talking about. The expression is simply not true (they were "about as popular". Does that mean they were 2% more or less popular? 5%? 8.3%? What if it was a woman burning $100s outside a bank? Did Putin have the realization that they were more or less popular than her?). I think the fact that you use this kind of example is what Muscovite99 means when he says he thinks you're coming at this article with a lack of NPOV. Ha! (talk) 22:36, 29 April 2008 (UTC)
What I do find rather interesting is that after complaining about NPOV issues, you inserted a novayagazeta link into the lead and attributed their opinion to "some", which is an explicit weasel word. This magazine is very well known for its anti-Putin stance, and perhaps has never printed a positive word about him. Krawndawg (talk) 19:46, 29 April 2008 (UTC)
One of the last few uncontrolled newspapers in Russia. - PietervHuis (talk) 00:55, 30 April 2008 (UTC)
Yea the introduction could become a bit more neutral & shorter. Stuff like this: "He supported the 2001 invasion of Afghanistan, but was highly critical of the 2003 invasion of Iraq" is quite unnecessary. Only a few countries supported the invasion of Iraq, there's not really need to "credit" him with something like this in the introduction. All other presidents don't seem to have such info in the intro either. It's become less POV compared to before though - PietervHuis (talk) 00:53, 30 April 2008 (UTC)
I believe claims of consensus are difficult to find. The Daily Telegraph article, as well as the BBC article are pessimistic about Putin's contribution to the growth of Russian economy. I do not know if it is appropriate to refer to such articles as if they were in favour of Putin.
(I replaced the weasel words with the names of the sources).ilgiz (talk) 01:16, 30 April 2008 (UTC)
"One of the last few uncontrolled newspapers in Russia." - What are you talking about? The government only owns about 10% of the newspapers in Russia. I recommend reading these, because it's clear you've never lived in Russia and don't know what you're talking about: [11][12]
Ilgiz: if you check the BBC links I provided you'll find that they are really not that pessimistic at all. I think it's a bit of a problem that because a few people don't like Putin, we can't list any positive achievements in his intro. I've already provided links that say he is credited for the "good times", but they've been deleted numerous times, along with statistical facts such as the halving of poverty, wages growing, the middle class expanding etc..even though the sources do attribute these things to Putin. This is precisely the problem with wikipedia. We have biased critics controlling important articles, rather than information gatherers which is what we're supposed to be. Krawndawg (talk) 04:38, 30 April 2008 (UTC)
Krawn, please check WP:AGF - PietervHuis (talk) 14:44, 30 April 2008 (UTC)
  • I was not going to discuss the comparative validity of different opinions. I think it is quite obvious that when Krawn dismisses any critical opinion as «anti-Putin stance» he invites others to dismiss his favored ones as «pro-Putin stance» and we all know that the Kremlin has spent close to half a billion US dollars last year "to improve Russia's image abroad" (i suspect not all of that money was simply embezzled); one might well suspect some editors here of being on this payroll (i am NOT asserting this - i am just pointing out the absurdity of such argument). My point actually was and is that the lead should steer clear of ANY opinions, as the article had already been full of all sorts of those, and recycling some of them now provokes a new round of edit war this article was through late last year. It should simply state facts about facts, such as "he was re-elected in 2004". Krawn is effectively suggesting cherry-picking for the lead those opinions that represent «pro-Putin stance» on the basis that such opinions are prevalent in the media. I understand, he vows to determine on the basis of some statistic calculations what is prevalent. I am not sure that this is the stated WP policy for writing leads on hot political topics, in the first place. But, apart from that, phrases such as "ambitions of the notorious oligarchs, who were extremely unpopular with the Russian public" (that he has been defending on the basis that they ARE indeed "notorious") being as they are outside referenced quotes, degrade the lead into a piece of tabloid journalism. If such language is allowed, the phrase a few paragraphs thereinafter "he was recruited to the KGB" should be made into «he was recruited to the notorious KGB, an extremely unpopular agency widely known for its murderous and mendacious ways». Is this agreed, Krawn?Muscovite99 (talk) 17:43, 30 April 2008 (UTC)
It's just mind boggling how many false assumptions you've attributed to me. I'm talking about facts, not opinions. Statistical facts. I don't dismiss any opinions of Putin one way or another, and clearly there is more than enough criticism about him in the article hence why I feel no need to add even more. I find trouble with the fact that only negative aspects are being pushed, while positive ones censored. I couldn't care less about whether or not opinions are included in the intro, what I care about is that the facts are being censored, any potential positive opinions censored as well, meanwhile, all negative opinions and facts are still being included and expanded upon. There is absolutely no balance. Also, I still find it funny that you're talking about it reading like a tabloid when you're the one who included the opinion of a novaya gazeta article and attributed their anti-putin stance to "some people" as if it were a popular opinion. Pot calling the kettle black?
I've already explained in detail why there is need to mention popular opinion about the oligarchs. If you don't think that should be in the intro, then delete it, along with everything about them, because the issue becomes moot without knowing the full story, precisely why he did what he did to the oligarchs.
Peter, please see WP:AAGF Krawndawg (talk) 19:39, 30 April 2008 (UTC)
    • [The why question is blatantly obvious to reply: the guy wanted uncontrolled power for himself and his friends.] I shall delete it along with the POV tag, if the lead remains essentially as it now stands. I cannot see your point about Novaya -- by any stretch of imagination, the paper is not a tabloid (perhaps, now the only non-tabloid newspaper in Russia, which can be seen even without reading the stuff -- there's virtually no advertising in it). And then, i am afraid you continue to fail to distinguish between a reference to an opinion we present as an opinion and the words of the WP article as such (that is our words as editors): in the latter case (which is the case with the phrase "the notorious oligarchs, who were extremely unpopular") such terms are absolutely off-limits (See WP:NPOV#Fairness of tone and Wikipedia:NPOV tutorial#Neutral language)Muscovite99 (talk) 20:12, 30 April 2008 (UTC)
"the guy wanted uncontrolled power for himself and his friends.]" - Is that so? Because the results of his two terms don't reflect that at all. Aside from the baseless cold war style hysteria we get in western media (and novaya gazeta), no statistics or opinion polls support that opinion at all. In fact, opinion polls show that the average Russian is far better off now in every aspect of life, assuring that he had the best interest of the country in mind, not his own personal power. Though I suppose your next reply will be that these results are fabricated by the government. Anyhow, your reply alone proves your bias against Putin, I don't see how you can argue that you're neutral towards him any longer. Krawndawg (talk) 20:36, 30 April 2008 (UTC)
What i stated in brackets is a common popular view shared by all i could ever hear speak -- living as i am in Moscow (no criticism of Putin being implied -- just facts of life that every one knows who is older than 7). But this is beside the point. The point is the language we use in a WP article (See my post above). As for your political views, i am not going to discuss russian politics with somebody who knows it by reading some selected polls and discarding everything he does not like as "baseless cold war style hysteria we get in western media". All i can say is that with such "hysterical" attitudes you are bound to fall foul of the WP policies wherever you write here.Muscovite99 (talk) 20:52, 30 April 2008 (UTC)
I provide statistics, you provide ad hominem attacks and unsupported assertions that your personal opinion is "common and popular". Typical. I suppose you can't successfully argue with statistics hence why you've compared me to a 7 year old and continue to make straw man arguments against me rather than saying anything of even the slightest bit of substance regarding the topic we're discussing. But then one must question why you're arguing in the first place. What are your motives to make this argument when you know you can't convince me with facts? Krawndawg (talk) 21:15, 30 April 2008 (UTC)
I have nothing against the statistics you provide. The thing is you whitewash any opinion that does not dovetail with "your" statistics (as is well known, the biggest lie on earth). And you keep talking about "facts" (!!). The only fact we may be reasonably certain about is that there a man called «VVP» who is reported by media to be President of Russia. Your phrase «you provide unsupported assertions that your personal opinion is "common and popular"» is misleading and typical of your style of argument -- it was not incidental that i put my "personal opinion" in brackets (a few posts above), to say nothing of it being on the discussion page - not the article, as i did not even want it to be part of the discussion. Muscovite99 (talk) 16:03, 1 May 2008 (UTC)
Also, to your claim that i can no longer argue that i am «neutral towards him [Putin]» -- may i say that i never claimed to be neutral, in the first; in my message on your discussion page i said i am agnostic about him as i am pretty much about every body because, unlike you, i do not believe i have sufficient information to adjudicate over any one. Unlike you, i do not believe that should the government statistics be deemed «fabricated by the government» it must be whitewashed -- just the other way round: it should be cited AND it should be made clear who is the source of these data. That's what WP:NPOV is all about. I do think it is unfair to turn an article into citation on «the average Russian being far better off now» as the article is not on statistics and «the average Russian» is a notional being whereas there are lots of real Russians who have a gamut of differing opinions.Muscovite99 (talk) 17:52, 1 May 2008 (UTC)
  • Muscovite99, may I advice you that if you continue reinserting poorly sourced contentious material about a living person to the introduction, I will keep it as an option to request blocking your account according to the WP policy on articles about living persons. May I suggest that you treat this comment as a warning given in accordance with the above stated policy. May I also remind you that reverting your contentious edits more than three times per 24-hour period is not a violation of 3RR according to the above stated policy. Cfeet77 (talk) 22:17, 30 April 2008 (UTC)
    • Definitely, you may not "advice" me, as such verb does not exist. Blocking and jamming is exactly what communists and putin's devotees are very fond of. Who has given you the powers to determine the credibility of sources? If you are serious about what you said in your comment «Exceptional claims require exceptional sources. Nemtsov is not credible. quotes INDEM which is not credible. And Voice of America is a CIA propaganda dept.» [13] -- absolutely any sources should be dismissed. You are the one who routinely refer ([14]) to a hilariously unreliable site which is just a tool for propaganda, pure and simple and you dismiss as unreliable the opinion of an ex- vice-premier. You are also the one who said about the guy who is known to have written denunciations on Andrey Sakharov to the KGB that «... the same should be done for opinion of Pavlovsky. Both are individuals representing popular opinion in their countries» [15]. The reference to the blog is provided because it carries the translation -- it is not used as a source as it is not.Muscovite99 (talk) 15:53, 1 May 2008 (UTC)
Also, i should like to put your "warning" on record as the declaration of your intent to initiate an edit war.Muscovite99 (talk) 16:05, 1 May 2008 (UTC)
I agree, your edits actually made this article more neutral and fair, whereas deletions of well sourced and non-controversial materials by others are against WP:NPOV policy. Also, any personal threats are unacceptable.Biophys (talk) 18:00, 1 May 2008 (UTC)

Gossips do not belong here

As there is no reliable source to support claims of immense wealth, that is nothing more than a gossip, and should be removed as per WP:BLP. Those who want to restore it, please show this is anything more than a gossip. I hope, dear editors, you find it fair and following WP policies. Thank you. Kulikovsky (talk) 16:24, 2 May 2008 (UTC)

Why do you think the sources provided are not reliable? I've reverted your edit. --NeilN talkcontribs 16:35, 2 May 2008 (UTC)
Since not a single reliable source has been presented. I think it would be better if you started with presenting one. Thanks for asking. Kulikovsky (talk) 16:40, 2 May 2008 (UTC)
Why are the Guardian and Washington Post not reliable sources? --NeilN talkcontribs 16:44, 2 May 2008 (UTC)
Where exactly either one says that claims are true? Kulikovsky (talk) 18:00, 2 May 2008 (UTC)
Guardian and Washington Post do not speak on behalf of themselves, but rather present an opinion of Rybkin and Belkovsky. These people are not credible. Cfeet77 (talk) 18:50, 4 May 2008 (UTC)

The article states these are allegations and these reliable sources are reporting on these allegations. I'm very open to posting a note WP:BLP/N asking for other opinions. --NeilN talkcontribs 18:16, 2 May 2008 (UTC)

Ok, so no reliable source says this is truth. Would you agree? I see it as a gossip, therefore, and per WP:BLP gossip should be avoided in BLP. And that makes perfect sense to me. WP is not a place to collect gossips. Kulikovsky (talk) 18:37, 2 May 2008 (UTC)
I'd go with the version NeilN was inserting, personally. They don't need to say its absolute truth as verified by them, only that it is alleged and by whom and based on what - if we don't go beyond the source, then we should include both the allegation and the response (sourced and NPOV) rather than just a rather POV frame for a rebuttal by Putin. Incidentally, I've reported the edit war to RPP and you should note that at least one or two of you may be blocked for violation of WP:3RR. Avruch T 18:41, 2 May 2008 (UTC)
I agree.Biophys (talk) 19:42, 2 May 2008 (UTC)
I am fine with dropping Putin's rebuttal, if that what you meant as your second best choice. Thank you. Kulikovsky (talk) 18:56, 2 May 2008 (UTC)

I've posted about the dispute here: [16] --NeilN talkcontribs 19:05, 2 May 2008 (UTC)

  • I self reverted as WP:BLP can be read differently, somewhat. I hope I can get clarification from someone. I did not restore the following:

"Putin's total personal fortune would amount to no less than $41 billion, placing him among the 10 richest in the world," says the Swedish economist Anders Åslund.

  1. Unmasking President Putin's Grandiose Myth, by Anders Aslund, The Moscow Times, November 28, 2007.
  2. Russia's New Oligarchy. For Putin and Friends, a Gusher of Questionable Deals. by Anders Åslund, The Washington Post, December 12, 2007.

I believe the quote is inaccurate (for the lack of better word) and misleading and the references do not support it. 1st requires registration, which a proper reference obviously should not require, and did not find the quote in the second reference. I continue to disagree that one level of indirection can make BS acceptable in WP, let alone BLP. Kulikovsky (talk) 20:18, 2 May 2008 (UTC)

    • 1st requires registration, which a proper reference obviously should not require What??? Obviously??? Are you aware that even offline sources are perfectly appropriate per wikipedia policies? The Moscow Times is a normal offline newspaper, the link is just a bonus. Colchicum (talk) 20:41, 2 May 2008 (UTC)

One or two more articles like that, at the most, would be enough to establish that the allegation has been made. The question, then, is whether this is significant enough to merit inclusion. Obviously not every detail in the life of a politician is, but as this points specifically to the issue of corruption (an issue that is of great significance when speaking of the Russian government - and really, any government past and present) it can probably be included on that basis. A political controversies section, or a criticism section (separate from what is considered "Public opinion") would be an appropriate place for this sort of thing. Avruch T 20:47, 2 May 2008 (UTC)

  • The issue had been extensively discussed (See the Discussion Archive). The allegations have become pretty much common knowledge as allegations and they are presented in the article as such with reference to reliable publications. Removing those now would be blatant WP:Information suppression.Muscovite99 (talk) 16:00, 3 May 2008 (UTC)

Allegations of ties with Timchenko etc. are poorly sourced :

This article refers to opinions of Rybkin and Belkovsky as a source of allegations. Washington Post does not speak on behalf of itself, nor does Aslund. Nowhere they assert that the claim is verified or that they endorse the claim. And Belkovsky and Rybkin alone are not credible. :

This article puts the term "friend of Putin" into quotes, thus questioning the term. It quotes anonymous sources as a source of the claim. Nowhere they assert that the claim is verified or that they endorse the claim. :

This article quotes Belkovsky as a source of the claim. The editorial staff does not speak on behalf of itself. Nowhere they assert that the claim is verified or that they endorse the claim. And Belkovsky alone is not credible. :

This source ( is not reputable.

Exceptional claims require exceptional sources as per WP:Verifiability.

Please read the WP rules first before you insert encyclopedic content of this kind into WP next time.

Cfeet77 (talk) 19:03, 4 May 2008 (UTC)

User Muscovite99, may I address you one more time and advice you that reverting an edit done in good faith and calling it "unlawful" in the revert comment can be understood as a personal attack according to WP policies. Cfeet77 (talk) 19:10, 4 May 2008 (UTC)

The ties are poorly sourced, the allegations of the ties are not. One of the principles of Wikipedia is "Verifiability, not truth". The allegations are notable as allegations and can safely be presented as such. We are not entitled to decide whether the allegations are true or false, but it doesn't matter. Colchicum (talk) 19:17, 4 May 2008 (UTC)
"Opinions of Rybkin and Belkovsky" are not "a source of allegations", they are the allegations themselves, and to my knowledge it has never been questioned that Rybkin and Belkovsky actually made that claim. There is absolutely no problem with verifiability. Colchicum (talk) 19:21, 4 May 2008 (UTC)
I feel that giving space to such allegations in the article intro violates the undue weight policy. And remember that WP:BLP requires sources concerning living persons to be of particularly high quality. This is not the case here in my opinion. Cfeet77 (talk) 19:24, 4 May 2008 (UTC)
Have you seen this discussion: Wikipedia:Biographies_of_living_persons/Noticeboard#Vladimir_Putin? Others don't seem to share your opinion. However, I agree that the text should be reworded and presented as allegations made by certain persons.Colchicum (talk) 19:27, 4 May 2008 (UTC)
On the noticeboard your are referring to this opinion has quite a good deal of support. Cfeet77 (talk) 20:06, 4 May 2008 (UTC)
No editor among those who haven't previously been involved in the dispute has found the text objectionable. The position of Cfeet77, Kulikovsky and Krawndawg is well-known and hardly surprising. Colchicum (talk) 20:16, 4 May 2008 (UTC)
It puzzles me a bit. Are we doing some majority voting here, or are we trying to establish what the WP rules themselves have to say on the situation? In other words, can be outvote WP rules and do things we want only if the majority agrees, even if this violates the WP rules? I would like to ask your opinion on the following matter: do you think that the "undue weight" rule was violated by quoting Rybkin and Belkovsky in the article intro or not? Cfeet77 (talk) 12:20, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
1) Talking about rules? If an allegation or incident is notable, relevant, and well-documented by reliable published sources, it belongs in the article — even if it's negative and the subject dislikes all mention of it. (WP:BLP) Note: it is the allegation that should be well-documented rather than the alleged fact. And it is. The uninvolved editors (Merzbow and JoshuaZ) have been unanimous. 2) Yes, the intro is way too long and doesn't comply with the Manual of Style. However, it means that this information (as well as the praise) should be moved down rather than removed. Colchicum (talk) 13:11, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
Moving it down sounds good for me. What does not sound good for me is that the opinion of Rybkin and Belkovsky is given way too much space in this article. First they claim some outrageous Putin's wealth, now it turns out they also claim some ties with Timchenko etc. It all sounds like a gossip to a well-informed mind. Does it mean that if these guys say something of similar kind about Putin next time, we will be obliged (according to your logic) to insert their published and well-documented opinion into this article? I don't think so. Not only it violates the "undue weight" policy. But these guys don't give us any idea from which fence they have grabbed their allegations. They don't give us any proof. Their claims are of marginal quality. And WP policy "exceptional claims require exceptional sources" require us to provide high-quality sources for unusual claims. Wealth allegations and allegations of ties with Timchenko etc. are unusual and are therefore exceptional. Cfeet77 (talk) 16:05, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
It is not "my logic", it is WP:BLP, literally. Also let me remind you that we have WP:BLP for two reasons only: to make no harm and to avoid being sued. As to any harm, the allegations have already been published worldwide, it doesn't make any difference here. As it have been stated that these are allegations, and their existence is reliably documented, Wikipedia cannot be sued for them. There is no other reason to refer to WP:BLP. The claims that Rybkin and Belkovsky made these allegations are not exceptional. Colchicum (talk) 16:30, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
There is no problem with verifiability. There is some problem with credibility. I can make a claim that, say, Earth is a cube. I can make it verifiable that I made that claim. Should verifiability alone in this case be the basis for inserting my claim into WP? I don't think so. Cfeet77 (talk) 19:29, 4 May 2008 (UTC)
Well, only if you are a former secretary of the Security Council of Russia and your opinion is often mentioned in mainstream Western media. Colchicum (talk) 19:35, 4 May 2008 (UTC)
I am a regular reader of the western press and their coverage of events in Russia and I have not noticed that Rybkin and Belkovsky have a citation index of any significance. Rybkin was a creature of Berezovsky when he got his post in the Security Council. Cfeet77 (talk) 12:27, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
Putin was a secretary of the same Security Council and a creature of Berezovsky as well, so we could safely dismiss him as a pimp. But this is not relevant here. Have you ever googled for putin timchenko -wikipedia? Helsingin Sanomat, The Guardian, The Daily Telegraph, The Times, The Washington Post, let alone Russian newspapers, have all noticed these allegations. Colchicum (talk) 13:11, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
Still I am not convinced that Rybkin (let alone Belkovsky) is a notable person, especially nowadays, and that his opinion is notable. Cfeet77 (talk) 16:09, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
Well, you don't think so, but The Guardian, The Daily Telegraph, The Times and The Washington Post do. I can't help here. Colchicum (talk) 16:12, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
Ok, ok, let it be so. You might be right and I might be wrong. But you know what? I've been living in the Soviet times back then. And Soviet propaganda will always make it so that they will pick a marginal anti-American politician living in the US and widely promote his opinion in the Soviet media and even represent it as a mainstream opinion of the US politicians. Sadly, this is what I see happening with British and American media nowadays. Does this mean that the Soviet propaganda methodology was successfully transferred to the British and American media? Frankly, I would not like to be right in my judgment, by the facts speak for themselves. Cfeet77 (talk) 16:32, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
I just want to point out right now that there is currently a reference to a self described "russophobe" blog supporting some of those claims that a previous user was trying to remove earlier. I think that is quite reflective of the state this article is in, as well as the type of editors who are deciding the "consensus". Krawndawg (talk) 00:09, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
I've removed poorly sourced sentences along with unreliable sources as per WP:BLP and placed a dubious tag on the other claim about his ties as it is currently presented as fact and should not be. Krawndawg (talk) 00:28, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
This link only serves to provide English translation of the original reliable Russian source. This is fine per WP policies. It does not support anything.Biophys (talk) 01:22, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
The link cannot be trusted as a legit translation for obvious reasons and should not be reinserted. Krawndawg (talk) 01:24, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
Links to blogs cannot be used as a source in WP no matter what they are referring to by themselves. Cfeet77 (talk) 12:09, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
Please read Wikipedia:Sources#Non-English_sources. Someone simply provided a link to translation instead of giving translation himself. This is not forbidden by any WP rules (the original reliable source is Russian). Do you want me to start working seriously with this article? I did not plan that. But this is not a problem having "Age of assassins" with me.Biophys (talk) 01:53, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
The problem is that whoever runs that blog could easily alter the translation however he pleases. It is not reliable and should not be linked to anywhere on this page. I'll take that second comment as a blatant threat to push an anti-Putin agenda and disrupt the credibility of this article. Absolutely unacceptable. Krawndawg (talk) 02:02, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
What "anti-Putin agenda" and what "blatant threat"? I am talking about using a reliable secondary source here. This is written by a prominent historian Felstinsky and political scientist Pribylovsky. I simply do not know any source better about Putin's presidency.Biophys (talk) 02:09, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
A blog cannot be used as a reliable source. Cfeet77 (talk) 12:11, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
There are plenty of reliable sources that are anti-Putin, I didn't say anything about the validity of the source. Threatening to give undue weight to such material written by political descendants, when there is already a substantial amount of such material in the article, is not acceptable. Your threat had absolutely nothing to do with what we were discussing and was clearly an attempt to intimidate. wikipedia is not a battleground, nor is it a place to settle personal grudges against editors. Please read Wikipedia:Etiquette. Krawndawg (talk) 02:19, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
I only proposed to improve this article using a reliable source but received that kind of reply. Sorry, but I am not going to continue this.Biophys (talk) 02:33, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
No, you threatened to push an agenda using a single anti-Putin source. Once again, your threat was completely unwarranted and had nothing to do with what we were discussing. You basically said "If you don't let me do X, then I'm going to do Y to get back at you". Krawndawg (talk) 02:36, 5 May 2008 (UTC)

Hey guys, don't get me wrong and don't think I am trying to push some artificial agenda to this WP article or even that I take this whole content dispute thing very seriously. I am more like interested to see whether WP is capable of being impartial or not. I think the situation nowadays is such that any ungrounded anti-Putin allegations will lower the credibility of the source that publishes such allegations rather than credibility of Putin himself. I thinks Russians understand this already way too well. Major western media outlets seem to start understanding this, too. Let's see when the western audience catches the train. Cfeet77 (talk) 16:21, 5 May 2008 (UTC)

  • The whole discussion has been initiated by a most dubious claim of "exceptional claims" -- this claim is based purely on Cfeet77's personal imagination.Muscovite99 (talk) 16:59, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
    Also find his manner of communication here («Hey guys») false, provocative and insulting. Please reserve this terminology for your pals at a disco.Muscovite99 (talk) 17:01, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
Speaking of manner of communication, it would be extremely helpful if you would refrain from responding to everyone you disagree with using ad hominem, personal attacks and derogatory comments. I'm not quite sure what someones "pals at the disco" have to do with improving this article. Krawndawg (talk) 21:19, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
regarding your removal of the sentence about the oligarchs strong ties to the Kremlin: The very first sentence in the BBC article calls Berezovsky a "Kremlin insider". Krawndawg (talk) 21:30, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
I understand your comments concerning "pals at the disco" are of approximately same quality as articles by Edward Lucas and André Glucksmann about Russia, Kremlin and Putin. So no surprise here, as all these things seem to fall within the same category. If this comment was meant to be insulting, then it is about the same as Cheney's Lithuania speech which was compared to an unsuccessful hunting shot I think. Cfeet77 (talk) 17:36, 6 May 2008 (UTC)


The content of the economy section is mostly irrelevant and doesn't belong here. This is not an article about the history of Russia. Here we should only describe the changes that were due to Putin rather than the changes that occured during his presidency.Colchicum (talk) 13:26, 5 May 2008 (UTC) It is important because he is not the only one in Russia who determines the economic policy. And it is very strange that at the same time the section has nothing to say about his economic program and views. Colchicum (talk) 13:32, 5 May 2008 (UTC)

I agree. This article is about a person, not about Russia. Besides, it is too large. Some other sections (e.g. Foreign policy) could be also moved to other already existing or newly created articles to make this one more readable.Biophys (talk) 16:31, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
I see this starts sounding like a pattern. Let's move all Putin's achievements (Economy, Foreign Policy) away from the article and let's keep all the dirty allegations in. Guys, you can do whatever you want. Do you think it is a big fun to maintain good balance in this article? However I would like to hear first whether other wikipedians want to see WP a credible encyclopedia or is it more like a battleground for promotion and PR. Cfeet77 (talk) 16:41, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
I've never proposed anything like that. But we absolutely have to make sure that these achievements are due to Putin rather than Yeltsin, Kudrin, Illarionov, Gref, Ignatyev, George W. Bush, Osama bin Laden, the Russian people, oil price or whoever or whatever else. Colchicum (talk) 16:47, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
And I wouldn't say that the extremely stranded relations with the neighboring nations, the UK and some others are a great achievement. Colchicum (talk) 16:50, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
Russians see this very differently. And so do western businesses BTW. In addition, Russians are very supportive exactly with regard to Putin's hard line concerning American puppets Yuschenko, Saakashvili, and Ilves. Strained relations are with politicians rather than with nations. Cfeet77 (talk) 11:25, 6 May 2008 (UTC)
  • Keep everything where he's responsible. For example, stabilisation fund undoubtly belongs there, as it's one of the policies of his administration. Garret Beaumain (talk) 16:55, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
I think main point here is that "Putin=/=Russia". You know, it was an old Soviet joke: "Winter had passed, summer is coming... Thanks to our great CPSU for that!". We should not hold Putin responsible for everything that hapens in Russia. Yes, he was indeed responsible for many policies during his presidency, and perhaps even for high oil prices, but his personal involvement must be sourced.Biophys (talk) 17:08, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
The majority of that section is based off articles called "Putin's success and failures" and "8 years of Putin" the connection between the economy and Putin isn't original research. Further, George Bush even has his own economy page filled with the same type of data albeit more detailed. People often equate the success/failure of the economy to the countries leader since they're inherently involved in it, this is nothing new. Of course it's not his single handed doing, but there's a reason it's called the Putin administration. If anything, the section should be expanded and moved to its own page (and maybe renamed) so we can go into more detail and post graphs etc.. Krawndawg (talk) 21:01, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
It is not that simple, because in principle economic success could well be traced back to policies of a previous administration or external circumstances. While there are sources claiming that Putin's administration is responsible for the perceived economic success, souces that deny this exist as well and should be represented fairly and without bias. It is not enough to pick several random references conforming to a single position and disregard the rest. Note that as to Bush, his page at least describes his policies and not only the results. Colchicum (talk) 21:35, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
If you think there is a lack of information, then by all means please add and expand! I agree that there should be more detail on the actual policies that helped these results along. But if you're suggesting we should just delete the information, I don't think that would be the appropriate move. Regarding sources that claim he didn't have anything to do with the successes, I think that's a bit silly. Who else would be responsible for the rising wages, lowering of poverty, middle class etc.. if not the Putin administration? I'd like to see such sources. Krawndawg (talk) 21:48, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
Russians themselves? The result of a market economy, it's not been too long ago Russia was still under communist rule. - PietervHuis (talk) 23:06, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
Exactly. Если женщина красива и в постели горяча, это личная заслуга Леонида Ильича /If a woman is beautiful and hot in bed, this is credit to Leonid Brezhnev personally, as Russians used to say. Colchicum (talk) 23:19, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
You going to provide those sources or not? And that "saying" is not relevant. An economy is directly affected by administrative policies. Krawndawg (talk) 23:56, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
It is (adversely) affected by policies, and according to many economists, the more it is affected the worse it becomes. What I am going to do is not your business, sorry. Colchicum (talk) 00:02, 6 May 2008 (UTC)
Why did you bring it up if you're not going to provide any reliable sources? Krawndawg (talk) 05:24, 7 May 2008 (UTC)
  • Arguments about somebody here trying to rob putin of "his" achievements (i understand he ought to be credited with not personally pilfering ALL the oil/gas humungous windfall straight into his buddies' pockets but also salting away a handsome part thereof in the US Treasury bonds and other securities) are utterly baseless. The major PUTIN's steps in the economy department are highlighted in the sections named "First term" and "Secomd term", the bit in question does indeed belong to Economy of Russia where the tepmplate requires an up-date.Muscovite99 (talk) 17:16, 6 May 2008 (UTC)
    Also, for Cfeet77: Stop lecturing others about how «Russians see this very differently» (they do indeed see things very differently as they are all different and the "average" statstics is utterly meaningless as, for instance, a very average abramovich put into one statistical basket with a million under-average bums will work out at a very princely "average Russian"'s worth of 20 thousand US) -- you are not a WP-registered guru on the Russians' opinion; it is merely YOUR opnion and as per WP:NPOV it does not matter a tiny bit as the content of a WP article goes; we do not need a lecturer here, especially the type who when deleting credible refs makes bufoonish comments such as «Nemtsov is not credible. quotes INDEM which is not credible. And Voice of America is a CIA propaganda dept.»[17].Muscovite99 (talk) 17:32, 6 May 2008 (UTC)
I think a request to follow NPOV also on the talk page goes a bit too far. And yes, I can only repeat what I was saying previously. Nemtsov is a marginal politician in the nowadays Russia, and you should know this if you consider yourself an expert on Russia-related matters. His party did not make it to the State Duma during last elections held on December 2, 2007. His party won 0,96% of the total number of votes on December 2 (source: ru:Выборы в Государственную думу (2007)). And since United Russia gained as much as 70% of votes during the same elections, it gives me an idea that their opinion should weigh 70 times as much as Nemtsov's allegations in this article. And as you remember, Nemtsov opted not to run for president during March elections, I think this was because he understood that his figures would be marginal if not zero, since Russians are no fools these days. And yes, I think that being a native Russian with fluent English I can consider my opinion to be educated enough that I can share it with my colleague editors on this page without fearing that I will be caught for incompetence or brainwashing, as I am aware of the opinion of both sides while the western general public is usually aware only of their own opinion.
As for INDEM - yes, this source is not credible. I was diligent enough to check their web-site. I can create a web-site, put some rules there and start promoting the web-site as an organization. Each of us can do this in fact. Running a website would cost me about 200 euros per year or even less. Would I dare to start using it as an authoritative source for anything? I don't think so. If you visit their public community forum, you will see it contains no more than 100 messages in total. Are you serious saying that a web-site with these community activity figures is anywhere close to being credible or representing mainstream views?
Voice of America is indeed a CIA propaganda department, what's wrong with that? To be more precise, it is a US government propaganda department. Or do you object this qualification?
Finally, did WP start issuing registrations or licenses for being an expert on Russia-related matters? I will appreciate if you provide a link. I may try to pass their exam in order to receive a certificate if this is the case.
Cfeet77 (talk) 20:28, 6 May 2008 (UTC)

Wording "this was presented by X as Y" has derogatory meaning

I have noticed that some wikipedians involved in editing this article have been repeatedly inclined to use the following formulation:

This was presented by X as Y

whenever they want to emphasize that the fact Y presented by X does not deserve attention in their opinion or that it is dubious in their opinion. I feel that this is their way to attempt to undermine value of the information presented by X with regard to the fact Y.

I would appreciate if we all write in neutral tone according to WP:NPOV#Fairness_of_tone. While this is a subtle observation, it can be clearly tracked to certain users and their activities.

Cfeet77 (talk) 11:15, 6 May 2008 (UTC)

This wording is used particularly widely in conjunction with the construct of the following kind: "Z says W. This was presented by X as Y." In this construct, W is the opinion promoted by the user and Y is the opinion s/he wants to represent with disapproving tone, even if W and Y are of equal importance or Y would in many cases outweigh W. Cfeet77 (talk) 14:54, 6 May 2008 (UTC)

Allegations of corruption, local decision-making

I feel that a certain group of editors have been recently engaged into adding a terrible anti-Putin bias into the article introduction. To start with, what this doubtful and poorly sourced corruption data has to do with Putin? And why it should be put into the article intro? And even if there is some relation between the two, why some editors will consistently remove Putin's own words on corruption where he admits that this indeed was a major problem during his both terms?

I also see some bigger issues with decision-making procedures in this article. I see that some patterns for pushing own agenda emerge here, and I don't see that these patterns are in accordance with WP policies.

Usually the pattern is as follows: Some loud and aggressive editor will be most insistent with pushing his anti-Putin agenda, no matter how credible this agenda is. Any attempts to stop him and remove dubious material from the article by reverting his edits thus enforcing WP:BLP will meet outrageous resistance and consistent reverts. His activity will meet faint support from the rest of the anti-Putin camp, and the only criteria for such support will be that the agenda being pushed is anti-Putin, not that the agenda meets WP quality standards. Sometimes a patrol user with semi-admin privileges like User:NeilN will come and try to silence Putin proponents who are diligently trying to enforce WP policies by threatening to report their alleged misbehaviour on the admin noticeboard, while engaging into edit warring by himself. He will do this even if no misbehaviour effectively occurred.

Sometimes this same aggressive user who initiated pushing own agenda will insert a neutrality tag into the article, and the only purpose of such insertion will be to invite the rest of "editorial staff" to the talk page for the purposes of engaging them into flame war by making personal derogative comments that are meant to be insulting.

Sometimes s/he will try to move core content of the article about Putin that s/he dislikes to some irrelevant article like "Foreign Relations of Russia", arguing that the article about Putin is too big. Interestingly, the article size does not prevent him from inserting own bias. Sometimes he will try to make such move in two steps, first adding a reference to the relevant section of the article about Putin of this kind: "Main article: Foreign Relations of Russia" and second moving the core content to the alleged "main article".

Sometimes s/he will try to remove good references supporting some claim one by one. When there are no more references left, the claim will be removed as "poorly sourced", even if the claim originally abounded with high-quality references.

Finally, polite and intelligent editors feel they are tired of resisting a hooligan who has such widespread support, they give up and the hooligan wins by having his agenda pushed into the article. S/he will then claim that "consensus was reached", even though in practice it meant that other editors felt mentally exhausted and unable to continue. The rest of the anti-Putin camp feels inner satisfaction and it completely ignores the doubtful ethics used to achieve the goal. I understand that double standards is one of the most favourite practices of some considerable part of the western society, but think how poor will be the opinion of the rest of the civilized world concerning those who apply such practices?

Hey guys, I am asking you, is this what Jimmy Wales meant WP to be? I thought WP was meant to be a reputable source of information rather than a test bed for new types of brainwashing technologies.

Cfeet77 (talk) 21:37, 6 May 2008 (UTC)

Users might direct this entire essay you've written to you as well. The "stop pushing your personal agenda" argument comes from both sides. - PietervHuis (talk) 22:23, 6 May 2008 (UTC)
  • Absolutely agree with PietervHuis -- Cfeet77's griping ought to be aimed at himself.Muscovite99 (talk) 17:34, 7 May 2008 (UTC)
Indeed they might, but unlike me they cannot do this in an evidentiary way (i.e. supporting diffs as a proof of their words etc). Cfeet77 (talk) 22:45, 8 May 2008 (UTC)
And yes, I also mean the atmosphere of mental terrorism that some aggressive users are trying to maintain on this talk page and in their article edit comments. Cfeet77 (talk) 23:30, 8 May 2008 (UTC)
There's nothing wrong with pushing "own" agenda if the manner of doing so complies with WP policies. Questionable means of pushing questionable agenda is the real issue I was covering in this essay. Cfeet77 (talk) 23:49, 8 May 2008 (UTC)
I agree with User:Cfeet77 on many great points he made. Kulikovsky (talk) 19:43, 7 May 2008 (UTC)


You guys stop this now, or I'll report you. If you wish to refine the lead, the right course of action would be to move the information (together with the pompous praise, of course) down from the lead rather than remove it altogether. It has already been established that there is, to put it mildly, no consesnsus that the information is not notable and poorly sourced (see above), so this is clearly inappropriate. Colchicum (talk) 19:34, 7 May 2008 (UTC)

I do agree that in some cases moving info is the best course of action, thanks for making this point. Yet, perhaps, some editors may believe that some info in the lead is either unnecessarily repeats more detailed information of the article, or, in other cases, is so weakly sourced, or not notable that they do not fell like it has place in the article at all. Kulikovsky (talk) 19:53, 7 May 2008 (UTC)
Some editors' opinion is not enough. Some other editors (and uninvolved Wikipedians) believe that it is well-sourced and notable (see above). And the disputed information is sourced even better than the rest of the lead. Colchicum (talk) 19:59, 7 May 2008 (UTC)
Muscovite has violated WP:3RR and I have warned him about it on his user page. Krawndawg (talk) 20:07, 7 May 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for your interesting opinion. How is this relevant here? You'd better warn yourself. Edit-warring is not acceptable, regardless of whether the 3RR has been broken. Colchicum (talk) 20:15, 7 May 2008 (UTC)
What interesting opinion? I did not express my opinion. I'm letting everyone here know that Muscovite may be reported and blocked for continued edit warring from hereon. Considering I made one single revert, I find your attitude rather hostile and unhelpful to the situation. Krawndawg (talk) 20:27, 7 May 2008 (UTC)
Colchicum, how do you decide what is enough and what is not? Kulikovsky (talk) 20:08, 7 May 2008 (UTC)
Have you read the policies? Colchicum (talk) 20:15, 7 May 2008 (UTC)
Yes, I have, but maybe not all of them. Kulikovsky (talk) 20:50, 7 May 2008 (UTC)
I have read quite many of them. Which policy exactly you are referring to at this very moment? Diffs of violating the policy? Please be argumentative and provide this information. Cfeet77 (talk) 13:25, 9 May 2008 (UTC)
Colchicum, I would like to bring one example to the table. Suppose I insert a reference to WP from my personal blog and call it "notable". Suppose I also have pals out there ready to support my opinion without presenting a clear proof or argument why they think so or without addressing someone else's proof. Suppose now a single editor comes and removes my personal blog entry as a source. Assume now he does not meet any support on this talk page for his action. Do you still think that this single editor's opinion is not enough to remove the blog entry as a clear violation of WP rules? We all humans here, but I see some editors here prefer to be loud and reiterative rather than argumentative in their claims. Cfeet77 (talk) 13:20, 9 May 2008 (UTC)
  • The example ([18]) that Colchicum pointed out quite obviously falls under Wikipedia:Vandalism (blanking) and thus Krawndawg's attempt to adjudicate is utterly misplaced. Part of the problem with the lead is that somebody keeps lobbing in tags like either it is too short or too long -- i think at the moment the length is acceptable and every one should observe a moratorium on its editing.Muscovite99 (talk) 17:00, 8 May 2008 (UTC)
  • Muscovite, it has been pointed out to you more than a couple times by different editors that good-faith edits cannot be called vandalism, and that you violate WP rules such as WP:CIVIL by calling it vandalism. I am less and less inclined to assume good faith on your part every time I see it. Once again, I am asking you to stop this. Thank you. Kulikovsky (talk) 17:54, 8 May 2008 (UTC)
  • I do not call any one names, but unwarranted Blanking of a sourced text is listed as one of the types of Wikipedia:Vandalism#Types of vandalism -- good faith ot not. And yours was downright, totally unwarranted blanking of the text, which is most germane to the lead as it is the only accomplishment that is a direct result of Putin's actions (unlike everything else there, which mostly due to high oil prices, structural reformes of the 1990s, etc). And i cannot assume any goof faith on your part in doing so, as it is it quite clear to me that this vandalism motivated by censorship.Muscovite99 (talk) 18:59, 8 May 2008 (UTC)
"as it is it quite clear to me that this vandalism motivated by censorship." That seems to be exactly what you're doing by removing all of his positive economic achievements and calling reliably sourced and clear information misleading. If you don't know the difference between nominal and PPP GDP, don't touch the material in the first place. And I don't recall having everyone agree that the entire economy section should be removed without a trace either. It seems to me you really trying hard to remove anything positive from this article.
Muscovite99 once attempted to move the whole "Foreign policy" section into an unrelated article. And now I hear the same is happening with the economy section. I am inclined to thoroughly go through Muscovite99's edits of this article and comments he made on this talk page to build a case for Wikipedia:Wikiquette alerts as an early step of dispute resolution process. Can anybody point me to a single clearly good-faith edit made by Muscovite99 that can be seen as a valuable contribution to this article (a diff is what I am looking for)? If there were some good-faith edits, this will make me more inclined to think that we are dealing with a special type of personality rather than with systematically disruptive behaviour. Cfeet77 (talk) 13:40, 9 May 2008 (UTC)
But back on the thing about vandalism, again, accusing someone of vandalizing a page when they are clearly doing what they think is a positive improvement (and even say so) is considered a personal attack and, if you repeat yourself, grounds to be reported. Krawndawg (talk) 00:38, 9 May 2008 (UTC)

Minor edits?

Krawndawg, please stop marking reverts as minor edits. Per Help:Minor edit they are not minor. Colchicum (talk) 00:36, 8 May 2008 (UTC)

Sure thing. This should have been directed to my talk page though, as it has nothing to do with the article. Krawndawg (talk) 02:21, 8 May 2008 (UTC)

NOT a Prime Minister

Hey, Everyone! Is there anyone missing the point Putin is NOT a prime minister yet? Can't you wait for a media report informing us about the matter before rushing to update the info box? What the hell? Don't put the cart before the horse. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:34, 8 May 2008 (UTC)

It's already been stated that he will take the post. I've put him now as PM-designate though. Therequiembellishere (talk) 02:38, 8 May 2008 (UTC)
I will change that to "nominee" for now since he has not been approved yet. Fair enough? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:48, 8 May 2008 (UTC)

Personal stats?

How tall is he? -- (talk) 14:38, 9 May 2008 (UTC)

Krawndawg's economic data

As regards Krawn's comment «restoring sourced content (please don't call it misleading when you are ill informed on the subject» ([19]) when putting back ludicrous statistics from "Western hysterical cold-war media" (his terminology -- See above [20]), he should be calling "ill informed" Mr Putin as the data presented are directly attributable to him in his official speech and posted on his official site. Any one who has been ever tangentially following Putin's utterings for the past 8 years (Krawn apparently hasn't as he is overly informed as he is), knows that back in 2000 Putin set an ambitious task to DOUBLE Russia's GDP by 2010 (See here 7th para from top [21]). Now, in February this year, Putin himself bragged that «GDP has grown 72 percent since 2000» ([22]) and added that the task of doubling the GDP, if all goes well, will have been achieved by 2009. And now, you're pushing some Igor Fedyukin's figures from September 2007. And the figure plucked from MSNBC wiretape was written by some one who (CIA or not) is an absolute ignoramus. Also, putting an excusing term "nominal GDP" is wrong because the source speaks of "GDP", or perhaps even "average GDP" («Average wages rose eightfold during Putin's eight years as president, from roughly $80 a month to $640, and GDP sixfold.») -- whatever that may mean amongst CIA-connected cold-war hysterics Muscovite99 (talk) 16:14, 9 May 2008 (UTC)

Muscovite, you have absolutely no idea what you're talking about and I don't feel it's my job to educate you. Please learn about economics before you go editing articles and removing correct and reliably sourced data. That is why WP:V specifically says you cannot remove reliably sourced data because you think it's wrong. Biophys, you agree with Muscovites violation of 3rr, WP:V and removal of mostly positive material without consensus? Why doesn't that surprise me? Please stop wikistalking me and involving yourself in every conversation and article that I am involved it. It's creepy. Krawndawg (talk) 16:29, 9 May 2008 (UTC)
Krawn, this is not about economics -- it is about your pushing some utter bilge from Fedyukin and some AP hacks into the article about the President of a great power, instead of giving him the righ to present his very official economic data. See the source -- if are not educated enough to read Russian (a very beautiful language that Putin and the KGB speak), read the excerpts on the Chinese wire (second link).Muscovite99 (talk) 16:48, 9 May 2008 (UTC)
Did you even read my version? It includes both those figures. 72% PPP growth = 6 fold nominal growth. 150% real wage growth = 8 fold nominal growth. There is nothing at all misleading about giving both figures and presenting the data exactly as it is. Please learn about Purchasing Power Parity and different types of GDP measurements. And also people don't normally refer to nominal GDP as nominal because it's automatially assumed. PPP is a theory of measurement.Krawndawg (talk) 16:57, 9 May 2008 (UTC)
Your AP source does not say "8 fold NOMINAL growth" -- please read it. The hacks you quote have absolutely no idea what they're writing about. Also, why would any one be bothered to know the "nominal" figres -- putin does not cite those. What those figures apparently mean is that back in 1999 a barrel of Urals traded at about $8 and 8 years later -- at about 15 (!) times that, likewise natural gas and most other raw materials -- major export articles and currency earners for the state budget. Now, this is just a mountain of US cash that is heaping on the heads of RF government -- this is not GDP, it is Federal Reserve's printing press. Putin was shrewd enough to salt away most of this cash, recycling it into the US government bonds (thus financing the US gigantic budget and trade dificits). Most likely this was part of his deal with the US government from the very beginning. In return there was probably a promise not to publicese a plethora of documents about his involvemet in criminal activities in Europe in the 1990-s and of course there was "I-looked-into-his-eyes-and-saw" compliment from top man on the global totem post.Muscovite99 (talk) 17:13, 9 May 2008 (UTC)
What the heck are you ranting about? That's a very interesting opinion, but wikipedia is not a soap box or blog, nor is it the place for original research. You're only digging yourself deeping and proving that you really don't understand economics. Those "hacks" are professionals, and you are not. Their word is taken over yours. If you think the Associated Press is an unreliable source, bring it up at Wikipedia:Reliable_sources/Noticeboard. If you can convince them that the source is unreliable, I promise you I'll never argue about it again. Until then, please stop breaking wikipedia policy, and revert yourself. Krawndawg (talk) 17:39, 9 May 2008 (UTC)
  • Agree with Muscovite. Moreover, all or almost all economic data should be removed from this article as irrelevant per comments by Colchicum above.Biophys (talk) 16:19, 9 May 2008 (UTC)
Since I did not hear any objections, I removed this POV fork to article Economy of Russia.Biophys (talk) 19:10, 9 May 2008 (UTC)
You heard objections from me, and two other users in the section above. Further, you reverted back to a version that removes all of the intro fixes, no doubt on purpose. I am in the middle of reporting you to an admin, so I suggest you revert yourself. Krawndawg (talk) 19:15, 9 May 2008 (UTC)

Duplicate data in the atricle

I'd like to discuss this on the talk page first, as the whole article editing process becomes rather hot and we all need time to calm down.

Is it appropriate to have the same duplicate material in the intro and in the "First term" chapter? The material in the "First term" chapter seems to be more detailed, balanced and unbiased.

Some users argued that the article is big enough already.

Here is what we have in the intro:

"During his first term in office, he moved to curb the political ambitions of some of the Yeltsin-era oligarchs such as former Kremlin insider Boris Berezovsky, who had "helped Mr Putin enter the family, and funded the party that formed Mr Putin's parliamentary base."[13][14] A new group of business magnates controlling significant swathes of Russia's economy, such as Gennady Timchenko, Vladimir Yakunin, Yuriy Kovalchuk, Sergey Chemezov, with close personal ties to Putin, emerged.[15][16][17][18][19][20] Corruption grew by the magnitude of several times and assumed "systemic and institutionalised" form, according to a report by Boris Nemtsov as well as other sources.[21][22][23][24][25][26]"

Here is what we have in the "First term" section:

"During his first term in office, he moved to curb the political ambitions of some of the Yeltsin-era oligarchs such as former Kremlin insider Boris Berezovsky, who had "helped Mr Putin enter the family, and funded the party that formed Mr Putin's parliamentary base", according to BBC profile.[71][72] At the same time, according to Vladimir Solovyev, it was Alexey Kudrin who was instrumental in Putin's assignment to the Presidential Administration of Russia to work with Pavel Borodin,[73] and according to Solovyev, Berezovsky was proposing Igor Ivanov rather than Putin as a new president.[74] A new group of business magnates, such as Gennady Timchenko, Vladimir Yakunin, Yuriy Kovalchuk, Sergey Chemezov, with close personal ties to Putin, emerged.[15][75][76][77][78] Corruption grew by the magnitude of several times and assumed "systemic and institutionalised" form, according to a report by Boris Nemtsov as well as other sources.[79][80][81][82][83][84] Corruption was characterized by Putin himself as "the most wearying and difficult to resolve" problem he encountered during his two terms in office.[85]"

I am referring to this revision of the article.

If there are no objections, I would leave the more neutral version in the "First term" section and take the intro version out. Cfeet77 (talk) 10:18, 12 May 2008 (UTC)

I think the whole oligarch subject is not important enough to be in lead. Kulikovsky (talk) 17:50, 12 May 2008 (UTC)
  • Just for the record: this whole fandango roung the lead was started by this [23], albeit after the tag was put [24]. Though arguably this was done as per WP:LEAD, in the case of somewhat contentious subject such as this, the result was less than desirable as different parties began pushing what they deemed more appropriate into the lead, thus restarting the edit-war that the article had been through end of last year. In the light of the above, i always argued that the lead should stick to sheer facts (facts stating facts, not opinions, and facts directly pertaining to the person's biography -- not what happened to the country in his tenure), more so in view of the fact that the man's career is far from over. So this would be what i wouldn't mind having again, that is essentially reverting to here [25], with appropriate update added. If not acceptable, what should be excluded from the lead then, is all the economics stats as it the least relevant to WP:BLP article.Muscovite99 (talk) 19:02, 12 May 2008 (UTC)
The oligarch subject is the most pertinent to the subject matter of the article that there is, for it explains how the man got where got and what he did to those who got him there -- this speaks volumes of the character of the man (please do not forget the subject is a man -- not the RF under his rule).Muscovite99 (talk) 19:02, 12 May 2008 (UTC)
JFYI, Time's article A Tsar Is Born - Person of the Year 2007 says little about oligarchs and quite a bit about economy changes. Kulikovsky (talk) 19:29, 12 May 2008 (UTC)

My question was not whether this is relevant or not. My question was should duplicate data be removed. As I see no objections, I will remove it from the lead, as it is already there in the First term in greater detail. Please discuss it on the talk page first if you object this removal. I personally also feel this is totally irrelevant for the lead. Cfeet77 (talk) 21:37, 12 May 2008 (UTC)

Oh, no. You have to get consensus here prior to removing important and sourced data, not later. Let's keep it. This info is exteremely important per WP:NPOV.Biophys (talk) 21:45, 12 May 2008 (UTC)
This info is not removed from the article, mind you. It stays there in the First term. I think Muscovite99 had a good idea about keeping this version of the lead as final with appropriate updates. Let's face it: none of us can find consensus on what to include to the lead and what not to include. For this reason I think the lead should be almost zero size, so that we can let the reader decide and make up his mind by himself, without introducing our own bias right from the start and affecting reader's own judgment. I would personally fully support the idea of keeping the lead as short as it can be and refactoring all this implicit support and criticism into the main body of the article. This seems to be the only viable solution to end this edit war that may become almost endless. Cfeet77 (talk) 21:55, 12 May 2008 (UTC)
No, it is absloutely wrong idea to have lead "of almost zero size". The lead should fairly describe the content of the article per WP manual. If we can not find consensus (as you tell), we must keep everything as it is until we find new consensus. One of paricipants here get an official warning for removing sourced texts from this article. So, let's keep the sourced content.Biophys (talk) 22:12, 12 May 2008 (UTC)
I agree with Cfeet, the material is repetitive and not important enough to be in the lead. I can't remember the last time I read an article about Putin's accomplishments where it talked about that material. Krawndawg (talk) 22:25, 12 May 2008 (UTC)
Perhaps this could be re-written better, but main point is very important. See this source. It tells: "According to Transparency International, the only country with more measurable corruption than Russia (as a percentage of per capita income) is Equatorial Guinea. Under Boris Yeltsin, the Russian economy was dominated by oligarchs who amassed fortunes on the strength of corrupt connections to government. Now, government officials are the oligarchs.". If Putin is one to prise for economic "success" due to high oil prices (as Krawdang insists), Putin is the one to blame for corruption and other problems. Biophys (talk) 02:15, 13 May 2008 (UTC)
If there was something focused on corruption, rather than oligarchs, that, perhaps, would be more appropriate. Kulikovsky (talk) 02:23, 13 May 2008 (UTC)
Thank you for your interesting opinion. How generic statistics on Russia fits into this BLP? And you still did not address the issue of having duplicate material in the article body. Do you object removing duplicate data? Cfeet77 (talk) 10:02, 13 May 2008 (UTC)
I think the idea of having a lead of almost zero-size is absolutely right as a last resort to stop edit warring. And edit warring is what we are facing at this very moment. Do you really think me not editing the article means we have reached some kind of consensus? Wrong. It means that I want to discuss things before engaging into further edits, but I am absolutely unhappy with the lead as it is. Cfeet77 (talk) 10:02, 13 May 2008 (UTC)

Kulikovsky, I don't really get it. Do you think Putin's and Kremlin's own opinion on things is irrelevant for this article? It's like you'd tell me: "you are a bad guy" and I would argue: "no, I am not" and then we would include your opinion into a WP article dedicated to my personality and omit my own words defending myself. Please check the WP:NPOV#Balance. Cfeet77 (talk) 10:23, 13 May 2008 (UTC)

In case of lead balance is reached by saying something good and something bad about Putin. There is no need to say what Kremlin thinks about something bad said about Putin. Or, if you insist, should not we add some reaction of the West to those Kremlin statements? Like "Kremlin used smokescreen tactic when facing corruption criticism"? And there is a possible Kremlin answer to that and so ad infinitum. Don't you think we need to stop it at some point? This has nothing to do with NPOV. I do think that if we were to write an article about a bad guy, the views of the guy how prosecution and the world are unfair to him would have place in the article, but not in the lead. It simply makes the lead harder to read and understand. (talk) 10:42, 13 May 2008 (UTC)
This is exactly why I support Muscovite99's idea of making the lead as short as possible. It is incredibly difficult to keep balance in the lead and try to maintain its size moderate at the same time. Cfeet77 (talk) 11:55, 13 May 2008 (UTC)
Yes I think we need to stop at some point, but only after we adequately present opinions of both parties involved in the conflict (this time it is western media and the Kremlin). Again I refer you to WP:NPOV#Balance. Cfeet77 (talk) 11:56, 13 May 2008 (UTC)
And BTW 80% of Russians seem to disagree that Putin is a "bad guy". Cfeet77 (talk) 12:04, 13 May 2008 (UTC)
Exactly. We're not writing an article about a "bad guy" who was prosecuted. We're writing an article about a controversial guy who some people love and some people hate. It's not a fact that democracy and human rights suffered under Putin. Opinion polls show that Russians and some other countries feel both those things have improved during his presidency (by a huge margin in Russia, 63% positive, 12% negative). So its merely an opinion, and thus if we're going to include western opinions into the lead, we should include their defense. Maybe the rest of the worlds opinion according to polls? We need to keep it neutral, any negative opinion should be counterbalanced and vice versa. Western opinion isn't the benchmark or authority here.
Biophys: You can blame Putin for increased corruption all you want, but what did it result in? The point in mentioning his economic success is to lead up to the positive changes it had, ie. growing middle class, wages, standard of living, poverty etc..and lots of people credit that to Putin. You must remember that corruption is arbitrary. You can't measure it the same way you can measure aforementioned results of a good economy. Krawndawg (talk) 13:02, 13 May 2008 (UTC)
Sure, there are positive publications about Putin and there are very negative publications about him. Right now the balance is strongly tilted toward the positive side, which is against WP:NPOV. We describe people per sources not according to opinion polls.Biophys (talk) 13:49, 13 May 2008 (UTC)
I believe Putin is generally seen in moderately positive light. That is how the article should describe the man. You do not suggest that article should consist of 50% favorable and 50% unfavorable statements about him, do you? If he did something notably wrong, the article should directly say that, of course. Opinion polls are sources too. Would you agree? (talk) 04:44, 14 May 2008 (UTC)
Indeed, we describe people per sources. Results of a public opinion poll are themselves one of the most powerful sources one can imagine, especially when it comes to the native population of the state headed by the leader in question. Cfeet77 (talk) 18:08, 14 May 2008 (UTC)
I see a very strong negative anti-Putin bias in this article. Cfeet77 (talk) 18:09, 14 May 2008 (UTC)

Selective/Fraudulant Editing by Krawn Dawg

Krawn Dawg has been deleting Criticism of Putin's administration, while not deleting the positive news. His argument is that my references do not mention the word "Putin". Any reasonable person would admit that if the positive news is added in edits, then the criticism should also be added.

here is my edit: During his rule, russia's population continued to fall at an alarming rate to 142 million by the end of 2007.[13], concentration of wealth and income inequality skyrocketed, agriculture and industry stagnated, with industrial production in 2007 a mere 72% compared to that in 1991 after soviet dissolution [14], and human trafficking of women and children for sexual exploitation continued unabated, with russia accounting dominant portion of the estimated 2.45 million trafficked humans. [15]

Here is the positive edit inserted by others: During his eight years in office, the economy bounced back from crisis seeing GDP increase six-fold (72% in PPP),[6][7] poverty more than halve[8][9][10] and average monthly salaries increase from $80 to $640, or by 150% in real rates, with Russia becoming the 7th largest economy in the world (in PPP terms).[6][11] According to the Federal State Statistics Service, the middle class grew from 8 million to 55 million between 2000 – 2006.[12]. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Samstayton (talkcontribs) 22:51, 13 May 2008 (UTC)

It was explained on your talk page that your sources do not connect those facts with Putin. Therefore there are no grounds to put add this info to the article. Moreover, you added it to the lead, which was even more inappropriate. Of course, we should not add material about changes in Russia be they positive or negative if there is no reliable source attributing them to Putin. I would also like to ask you to assume good faith. Does it make sense? Kulikovsky (talk) 23:05, 13 May 2008 (UTC)

No it does not make sense. Because you did not delete positive news which by your logic also do not connect to Putin. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Samstayton (talkcontribs)

It is not my logic that connects the two, but sources. For what it is worth, I am not satisfied at all about proof, if any, those sources show that big positive changes in Russia is specifically Putin's achievement. Kulikovsky (talk) 23:28, 13 May 2008 (UTC)

Just look at what the articles say. They directly link these things to Putin:[26][27] [28][29]

  • "ABOUT PUTIN, WHO'S CREDITED FOR MUCH OF RUSSIA'S GAINS:" ... "Good economic times are why many Russians say they support President Vladimir Putin in his bid to remain in charge of the country by running for parliament at the top of the ticket of United Russia, the main pro-Kremlin party."
  • "Just as Putin has given many Russians a sense of economic stability and optimism..."
  • "Average wages rose eightfold during Putin's eight years as president, from roughly $80 a month to $640, and GDP sixfold."
  • "It was Vladimir Putin who started to speak about poverty directly. Reducing poverty (as a part of reducing social inequality) began to appear in program documents, such as “Gref’s program,” as one of the priorities of social policy. The slogan of doubling GDP entered into the folklore of the Putin era, but few remember that with it the government also planned to reduce poverty to half its size. "
  • "Mr Putin, as befits a former KGB officer, has restored order after the liberalising chaos of the Yeltsin years."

I could go on, but I think you get the point. Your articles on the other hand not only don't make a connection between Putin and these negative things, but they don't even mention Putin at all. You don't find it a little ridiculous to blame an ongoing demographic problem on the president..? In fact one could add that it was due to his policies that the populations negative growth rate fell to only .17% in 2007 compared to .5% in previous years, and that the country has seen the largest baby boom in 25 years. Krawndawg (talk) 12:44, 14 May 2008 (UTC)

Selective/Fradulant Deletio by Kulikovsky

I am suspicious that Kulikovsky and Krawn Dog might be one and same person. kulikovsky again deleted the negative news selectively. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Samstayton (talkcontribs)

Two users deleting contentious original research from a biography of a living person, and you suspect sockpuppet? Funny. I suggest you take your complaint to Wikipedia:Suspected sock puppets. But I'd also suggest you read WP:BLP and WP:OR instead, so you can understand why the material you added cannot be left in the article. Krawndawg (talk) 12:24, 14 May 2008 (UTC)
No, Samstayton, I think you are mistaken. If you want to ask checkuser, you should ask about Krawndawng and User:Sbw01f. Biophys (talk) 17:25, 14 May 2008 (UTC)
Stop trolling, that user hasn't even edited in this article. Wikipedia is not a battleground, keep personal grudges to yourself. Krawndawg (talk) 22:06, 14 May 2008 (UTC)

Non-English sources

This is just a friendly reminder of a Wikipedia policy since so many Russian sources have been used in the article.


Because this is the English Wikipedia, for the convenience of our readers, editors should use English-language sources in preference to sources in other languages, assuming the availability of an English-language source of equal quality, so that readers can easily verify that the source material has been used correctly. Where editors use non-English sources, they should ensure that readers can verify for themselves the content of the original material and the reliability of its author/publisher.

Where editors use a non-English source to support material that others might challenge, or translate any direct quote, they need to quote the relevant portion of the original text in a footnote or in the article, so readers can check that it agrees with the article content. Translations published by reliable sources are preferred over translations made by Wikipedia editors.

Thank you for your reminder. We know the rules. This is an article about a Russian leader and there are at times no English sources of similar quality. Many of them have a big deal of anti-Russian bias. Is this some smart way to push POV into the article? Cfeet77 (talk) 18:03, 14 May 2008 (UTC)
Just as how Russian sources can be called "pro putin". - PietervHuis (talk) 21:17, 14 May 2008 (UTC)

Jewish grandparents

I have removed the following fragment:

His mothers surname, Shelom from Shelomovich is jewish. His paternal Grandfather Spiridon, is also a jew[3]

The full text of Ot pervogo litsa is available at [30] there is no traces of this information Alex Bakharev (talk) 12:46, 14 May 2008 (UTC)

Concerning the problems with the intro and data

I tried to make the intro a bit shorter again, I removed some details that are best to be presented in their appropriate sections, as well as the excess amount of citations for the corruption allegations so that not too much emphasis was put onto them.

As for the economic data that is inserted in the new economy section, I think it can stay, just as with the page for Franklin D. Roosevelt for example, however it should have more information on how Putin and his government contributed to the economic growth otherwise it fails to have any significance and would be better at home at Economy of Russia. Otherwise I could start inserting data like how Racism in post-Soviet Russia increased during his term.

Some people consider this page too biased on the side of nationalists, or too critical, I think the best solution to that is that we create a page Criticism of Vladimir Putin, in contrast to for example Criticism of George W. Bush. I'm not sure what happens to pages once Bush, and now Putin, aren't president anymore, but with Putin it would still be appropriate since he's still prime minister. - PietervHuis (talk) 19:45, 14 May 2008 (UTC)

Thank you very much for combing the lead. While in no way it is your fault, as a result of squeezing out other text, the whole matter with oligarchs became blown put of proportion. I do not see it as a big enough topic to be in lead at all. I will remove it from the lead.
To Putin haters, which I know here are some I would suggest to focus on corruption, which does seem to be a widely accepted issue existing under Putin's regime. Am I wrong about corruption in Russia? Kulikovsky (talk) 17:58, 22 May 2008 (UTC)
No one agreed here to "squeeze the introduction", certainly not Pieter and not me. Pieter did not make this deletion. I provided an additional supporting source to FT. Everything is sourced well.Biophys (talk) 18:22, 22 May 2008 (UTC)
Pieter did squeze it. Maybe you missed it, but that was what he did around 14 May and I am thankful for his job. Sourcing is irrelevant to lead. The whole story about oligarchs takes too much space in lead. It is unthinkable that the story about oligarchs occupies more space than the description of Putin's internal and foreign policy combined. The lead is much easier to read and digest after the removal. Kulikovsky (talk) 18:41, 22 May 2008 (UTC)
The information about the oligarchs is borderline fringe and completely based on speculation, accusations and opinions rather than verifiable facts. There's no way it deserves to take up that much space in the intro of all places. This is an encyclopedia, not a tabloid. Things like this: "the vast majority of them such as Mikhail Fridman, Viktor Vekselberg, Vladimir Potanin, Roman Abramovich,Alexander Abramov, Mikhail Prokhorov, maximized and consolidated their control over Russian natural resources and cash flows" absolutely reek of blatant POV being displayed as fact. Krawndawg (talk) 21:51, 22 May 2008 (UTC)
If even Colchicum tells that he agrees with Krawndawg, I am not going to argue. What you are doing here is the selective elimination of information about oligarchs (which is relevant to Putin's career) and insertion of almost irrelevant data about Russian economy.Biophys (talk) 02:18, 23 May 2008 (UTC)
What Krawndawg quoted seemed to be blatant Original Research. I did not find the references to be supporting the claim. None the less importantly, the whole theme of oligarchs was blown out of proportion in the lead, while more important topics are not covered there at all. Kulikovsky (talk) 03:15, 23 May 2008 (UTC)
  • There's plenty of evidence -- see the refs. The opinion about "borderline fringe" is his personal original research opinion. The manner of discussion of Putin-lovers is simply dismissing all facts they do not like as "speculations", which is obviously childish as this can be said of absolutely everything -- and quite rightly, moreover perfectly in accordace with WP:NPOV, which demnds that ALL assertions should be presented as third-party's opinions, not truths.Muscovite99 (talk) 17:37, 23 May 2008 (UTC)
Muscovite, I strongly suggest you refrain from removing statistical information from the lead. Your reason for removal has changed about 10 times already which proves that you are simply trying to suppress information using any old excuse. An admin has already warned to block you, and this is your last warning from me. Krawndawg (talk) 20:58, 23 May 2008 (UTC)

POV problem

"the economy bounced back from crisis seeing GDP increase six-fold " is biased POV. This part of sentence uses nominal GDP that is not adjusted for inflation. For NPOV presentation, the sentence should refer to real GDP figures. --Doopdoop (talk) 21:26, 15 May 2008 (UTC)

That is a fact, so I am not sure where "biased POV" comes from. Do you have inflation-adjusted numbers or whatever you prefer to see there? Kulikovsky (talk) 21:42, 15 May 2008 (UTC)
Inflation adjusted numbers are already there (PPP). Krawndawg (talk) 00:26, 16 May 2008 (UTC)
What I wonder is if the number "six-fold" is taken from the year 1999 on. Based on your graph, the GDP grew six fold from 1999 on, while "only" five-fold from 2000 on, the year in which Putin became president. Also in your graph "putin years" start at 2000, while he was elected in March to be precise. - PietervHuis (talk) 01:26, 16 May 2008 (UTC)
All I did was copy the source. Putins term didn't end in January 2008, that figure probably counts all the way up to May when the article was written. GDP grew 8% in Q1 2008. Also IMF estimates support that it grew 6-fold as of April 2008 if you keep in mind that their growth estimates were shy 1.2%.Krawndawg (talk) 14:02, 16 May 2008 (UTC)
Pieter, please look at this interesting source. It explains contribution of Putin to Russian economy.Biophys (talk) 03:50, 16 May 2008 (UTC)

All economists use inflation adjusted GDP rates when talking about economic growth, so current wording is POV. --Doopdoop (talk) 17:35, 16 May 2008 (UTC)

Well, it sounds like it is easy to correct. Kulikovsky (talk) —Preceding comment was added at 17:46, 16 May 2008 (UTC)
Wait a minute I think I misunderstood you. Are complaining that it says "GDP grew 6-fold" instead of "Nominal GDP grew 6-fold"? If that's the case, just correct it! That's what I originally had but muscovite deleted it because the referenced article didn't use the word "nominal" thus making it "original research" according to him. Krawndawg (talk) 20:46, 16 May 2008 (UTC)
No, I am complaining that "Nominal gdp grew 6-fold" is POV. GDP growth figures should be inflation adjusted when talking about economic performance. --Doopdoop (talk) 20:53, 20 May 2008 (UTC)
Sounds like you're trying to POV push now. Both figures are equally important for different reasons, and thus both should be mentioned. Read this, which bluntly states: "Market exchange rates are the logical choice when financial flows are involved." I find it mind boggling how you could call statistic figures POV, especially when both are presented side-by-side. What nonsense. Krawndawg (talk) 17:09, 21 May 2008 (UTC)
IMF's article is about comparing different countries, this article is about Russia only, and currency conversions are irrelevant. Inflation adjusted GDP figures in local currency should be used. --Doopdoop (talk) 21:01, 21 May 2008 (UTC)
The "Vladamir Putin" article is about "Russia only" is it? Additionally, why would anyone care about the Russian GDP in rubles (which probably grew more than 6 fold due to the collapse of the ruble) Krawndawg (talk) 22:08, 21 May 2008 (UTC)
Anyway your IMF source talks about real GDP growth, and never mentions nominal GPD growth. --Doopdoop (talk) 19:35, 22 May 2008 (UTC)
    • The real problem is this article is BLP, not Russia's economy (See Economy of Russia) and all this info is out of place here.Muscovite99 (talk) 17:30, 23 May 2008 (UTC)

NPOV dispute - lead

The oligarchs matter is discussed in intro in length that give it undue weight. More important matters, such as internal policy in general as well as foreign policy are hardly covered at all. For the record, I am talking about this version of the article: [31]. I do not see oligarchs topic as central to the article. Thank you. Kulikovsky (talk) 20:46, 23 May 2008 (UTC)

Yes, the oligarchs topic needs to be removed, but you see what is the problem. I suppose some Yeltsin-era oligarchs still have large financial assets at their disposal. No wonder if we find out one day that they have some WP editors on their payroll who constantly add bias that is favourable for the above mentioned oligarchs. What can we do? We are not on anybody's payroll, and our disputing resources are limited. Cfeet77 (talk) 08:05, 24 May 2008 (UTC)

I have attempted to rewrite the intro in a manner consistent with both NPOV (strictly pertaining to the introduction) and also with the relevant points raised by both Kulikovsky and Muscovite99, which are covered at length later in the article. Ender78 (talk) 22:38, 24 May 2008 (UTC)

Archiving Talks, both Old and Current

In the interests of getting this article back on track, I've archived the talk page into Archive 3.

Clean slate, folks. Let's try to get over the content disputes and produce a good article. Ender78 (talk) 21:28, 25 May 2008 (UTC)

Thought for the week: Michaelangelo used to say that his sculptures were already there, hidden in the marble. All he had to do is remove the extra bits of stone. Do we have a Featured Article on our hands here, that requires nothing but proper organization and editing?


Ongoing Content Issues

It is clear from the issues with this article and from the talk and controversies arising thereof that Vladimir Putin is not only a topic that is not "going away", but also one that is seen very, very differently by folks from different nationalities and backgrounds. It is equally clear that the Putin era will be regarded by future historians as a watershed moment in Russian history, likely discussing things in a context of "Before Putin" and "After Putin". This is all fine, but at the same time, our job here is to keep the matter factual, informative, and easy to read.Ender78 (talk) 21:28, 25 May 2008 (UTC)

Here's the three areas I recommend we work on:

  • Keeping the intro brief and informative, and without ideological bias.
  • Narrowing and consolidating the lengthier sub-sections, but again, without ideological bias in any direction, Creating separate articles dealing with Putin's policies and acts as Russian President and populating those articles with the lengthier passages from this main article.
  • Expanding sections in this article, and others, expanding on Putin's context, role, and interactions within the Russian government.

To this end, I've started the following sub-topics here on the talk page:

Article Introduction

Please discuss here what needs done with the introduction, bearing in mind that the entire point to an introduction is brevity and clarity in explaining the content to be covered later in the article. Ender78 (talk) 21:32, 25 May 2008 (UTC)

That introduction is starting to bloat up again, guys. Do we need percentages and achievements-in-full in the intro? I've always felt that an intro should make you want to read the rest of the article, not tell you up-front what the rest of the article says. Ender78 (talk) 01:57, 29 May 2008 (UTC)

  • I guess I understand why a recent change has been made. It looked to me the second paragraph was a little bit more devoted to negative rather than positive. So, Cfeet77 decided to balance it, I suppose. I personally would prefer if it was not overloaded with numbers as a result. Maybe Cfeet77 would be fine if balance would be achieved in a different way? I personally would leave only most important criticism. Kulikovsky (talk) 17:31, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
  • I just tried to keep it (the intro) from seeming like a whitewash by any given faction. :) I didn't exhaustively try to make it 100% even-handed; only to provide a quick-glance look at how the man is perceived, both good and bad. As I've been saying, we've got a good article with plenty of great facts here, we've just got to get it rearranged into a format that fits well with this venue, and informs the experienced Russo-phile or -phobe, while fully educating those who are totally unacquainted with the subject matter. (And those in between, which is to say, "People like me.") All other goals are secondary, which isn't to say we should not strive for NPOV; I wouldn't say those goals are mutually-exclusive. We just need to refine for one goal first, then refine for the secondary ones. Nor would I place myself in the position of judging the relative merit of various arguments; my sole personal goal is a fully-articulated, highly-readable article. :) Ender78 (talk) 02:23, 30 May 2008 (UTC)

Narrowing and Consolidating, Creation of more specific articles

Please discuss here sub-topics that can be shortened, with lengthier passages incorporated into lengthier articles specific to that topic (eg. "Russian Foreign Policy under Vladimir Putin"). Essentially, when in doubt as to how to handle a particular content addition, I would counsel editors to consult biographies of modern US Presidents (with the exception of G.W. Bush, himself an ideological battleground article) for ideas, since they're generally well-written, concise, and well-organized into sections, sub-topics, and related articles.Ender78 (talk) 21:33, 25 May 2008 (UTC)

New-article creations: (Please list all subsequent new articles here and sign it, and also add a section for discussion Ender78 (talk) 21:37, 25 May 2008 (UTC))

Once these sub-articles are fully fleshed-out, it is encouraged that editors delete, consolidate, and summarize these sections within the main Vladimir Putin article. Ender78 (talk) 22:59, 25 May 2008 (UTC)

Is anyone interested in taking on the task of whittling down the content under "Public Support and Criticism" and "Foreign Policy" now that the sub-articles have been established? If not, I'll start hacking it down in the next week to ten days. Ender78 (talk) 02:00, 29 May 2008 (UTC)

  • You are such a good writer, you'd be the best. I am sure you know, I have reservations about "Public Support and Criticism". Kulikovsky (talk) 17:27, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
Thanks, man. I'm tied up for several days yet, but if it's not been done when I can get to it, I'll do it. And, FTR, I was considering an article specifically for support, or perhaps consolidating "Criticism" and "Support" into an article "Public Perception of VP" or something along those lines. I guess I'll look at that more next week. Ender78 (talk) 02:18, 30 May 2008 (UTC)

Expanding on Putin's context within the Russian Government

This is an aspect of the Russian government that outsiders know little about, and about which our Russian or Russian-oriented editors can enlighten us. Nobody runs a government by themselves; even Stalin had to work within his system to get his desired results. Fleshing out these fine details of how Putin conducted the duties of his office will substantially help to define the man in a biographical sense. Ender78 (talk) 21:33, 25 May 2008 (UTC)

I am worried that the article lacks any information on Putin's program and positions (at least in the simplest sense of left-right politics) and concentrates way too much on what happened in Russia during his tenure. I know, it is notoriously difficult to find out what his program and positions are. After all, most of Russian voters don't care much about political positions in this sense and vote for personalities rather than policies, and the Russian press follows them. I am afraid that Russian sources are not particularly helpful here exactly for this reason. But it is essential to include such information if we wish to see this article improved. Colchicum (talk) 15:15, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
I am not sure there is a universally agreed conception what the Program/Results were/are. It is my understanding that Putin as deliberately vague about his "Plan"/intention. We have Putinism article to talk about his policies. Regarding Left/Right (Paleoconservator/Social Democrat/Neo-laborist, etc.) concepts I am not sure that using labels from the Western European/USA politics is productive outside this region. Was Saddam Hussein a liberal or a conservator? Pugachev? Stalin? Alex Bakharev (talk) 01:50, 27 May 2008 (UTC)

Possible synthesis

The following paragraph raises some questions, and possibly contains some synthesis.

While several Yeltsin era oligarchs such as Boris Berezovsky and Mikhail Khodorkovsky were either exiled or put in jail, the vast majority of them such as Mikhail Fridman, Viktor Vekselberg, Leonid Fedun, Vladimir Potanin, Roman Abramovich,Alexander Abramov, Mikhail Prokhorov, maximized and consolidated their control over russian natural resources and cash flows.[4][5][6][7][8]

I do not see that sources say anything supporting "maximized and consolidated their control over russian natural resources and cash flows". Neither did I see where "the vast majority" came from. Did I miss something? Until this is cleared, I will remove the content from the article as per WP:BLP. Also, most recently this material was added to the "first term" [presidential] section. Is that section appropriate if the assertions are true? Kulikovsky (talk) 18:55, 28 May 2008 (UTC)

This text was fine. All these people became much richer during Putn's rule - see Forbes lists, for example.Biophys (talk) 21:27, 28 May 2008 (UTC)

The forbes link clearly shows how exponentially rich these fraudsters have become under Putin rule. The names Chemezov, Yakunin, Sechin are nowhere to be found, but Abramovich, Abramov, Fridman, etc who are looting the natural resources and buying yatches and football clubs are littered in the list right at the top.

Kulikovsky is obviously deeply biased and wants to selectively demand references. May be he is editing on behalf of these oligarchs? Is there any way he can be investigated through his ip address? How can I trace kulikovsky's ip address and request an investigation. Samstayton (talk) 23:06, 28 May 2008 (UTC)

That's a perfect example of subtle original research, the type that this article is filled with already. The articles don't support the text at all and it should be removed promptly. The billionaires in Russia are not "oligarchs" with any political control like the oligarchs had in the 90s, and as such have nothing to do with Putin. Krawndawg (talk) 23:00, 28 May 2008 (UTC)
Samstayon, I would highly advise against attempting to find out personal information about an editor. Please read WP:AGF.Krawndawg (talk) 23:09, 28 May 2008 (UTC)
I agree with what Krawndawg said. Also, honestly, "maximized and consolidated" sounds like plain nonsense. "The vast majority" sounds questionable and POV-like. So, I wanted to see quotes from good sources directly supporting these statements. Just to be sure this is not a wild interpretation made by a wikipedian. I am pretty sure such statements cannot be found in Forbes lists. Does it make sense? Kulikovsky (talk) 23:14, 28 May 2008 (UTC)
It is sad to see some fellow editors keep pressing (undo) link instead of showing us quotes supporting the above sentences. Should I mention that reference to Forbes lists in this context is a red flag indicating original research?
Look what Krawndawg wrote when Muscovite99 challenged his edits:
  • The version you just reverted said: "the economy bounced back from crisis seeing GDP increase six-fold"
  • The article says: "Average wages rose eightfold during Putin's eight years as president, from roughly $80 a month to $640, and GDP sixfold."
That I see as a very good example. All of us, Wikipedians, should be ready to defend our edits, if needed, by the same standard. Granted, this is somewhat harder then pressing (undo) link, but reverts do not make content any more verifiable. And content must be verifiable. It is not me telling that, it is the rule that was established before any of us even heard of Wikipedia. I am hoping to see the proof soon. Because if I do not... you know, there is no choice but to remove it. That is BLP. Thank you. Kulikovsky (talk) 07:10, 2 June 2008 (UTC)

Preliminary result

Almost a week passed after a request to verify the contentious text above, and more than two days passed after a reminder. Yet, nobody could show how that content is verifiable. That means we have consensus here. No, I do not assume that everyone is for removal, I think it is not the case. But no one could show quotes directly supporting the content. That is where we have consensus so far.

Since no one has shown that it is verifiable, I have gained significant confidence that the text in question is an interpretation made by a wikipedian. Per WP:V it does not have place in article.

For those who would like to see the contentious text in the article, just in case, I would like to remind WP:BLP: The burden of evidence for any edit on Wikipedia, but especially for edits about living persons, rests firmly on the shoulders of the person who adds or restores the material. You had 6 days to demonstrate verifiability of the text. This has not been done. The text was in the article for too long. It is never too late show how a reliable source says the same, but it should be done before the material is restored in the article. Thank you. Kulikovsky (talk) 17:39, 4 June 2008 (UTC)

  1. ^ РОЗНИЧНЫЙ ПОДХОД. Российские банки борются за частников
  2. ^ Ежегодно объем потребительского кредитования в России удваивается
  3. ^ First Person (Paperback) by Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin (Author), Nataliia Gevorkian (Author), Natalia Timakova (Author), A.V. Kolesnikov (Author), Catherine A. Fitzpatrick (Author) at
  4. ^ Back in business - how Putin's allies are turning Russia into a corporate state. by Neil Buckley and Arkady Ostrovsky Financial Times June 19 2006.
  5. ^ Russia's New Oligarchy: For Putin and Friends, a Gusher of Questionable Deals by Anders Aslund December 12, 2007.
  6. ^ Миллиардер Тимченко, «друг Путина», стал одним из крупнейших в мире продавцов нефти. Nov 1, 2007.
  7. ^ Путин остается премьером, чтобы сохранить контроль над бизнес-империей. Dec 17, 2007.
  8. ^ За время президентства Путин «заработал» 40 миллиардов долларов?