Selfishness Kills

Max Can't Help It!
3 min readSep 12, 2022
Mark Wylie

A ramble…

When I look at the Putin regime I see a mafia, a bunch of thugs ruling a territory. Like every good mafia, their interiors are painted in gold and they wear gold jewelry — though more discretely these days.

When I look at France, England, Germany and the United States I see what’s possible when a mafia evolves into a state of civilized governance. Yet when one calls a citizen of our new generation, few call back. In today’s democracy, the individual answers to no one. This is the lament of all older generations, so perhaps it is nothing.

Germany, an uber civilized nation, buys a lot of useful dirt and slime from Russia’s mafia-controlled mines.

Median salaries in Berlin are twice as much as those in Moscow.

In the world economy, Muscovites are 2nd class citizens. They didn’t start the war, but their pent-up jealousy fuels Putin’s fire.

Ukrainians are not sympathetic, to put it mildly. Revenge is boiling on the stove.

Evil we call, those who bomb defenseless people
but will not prevent it;

There are many videos on YouTube of Russians shopping in various parts of Russia. The prices are very low compared to the United States. I looked up the prices of apartments in Moscow. The fanciest ones, in the center of the city, go for around $1,000/square foot. In New York City the prices are at least four-times greater.

Moscow and St. Petersburg would be 2nd-rate cities in the above mention civilized nations.

Most Russia soldiers live in such poverty that a Ukrainian middle-class town (similar to middle class towns in Russia) contain opulent treasures, like microwaves, worth the hassle of bringing home. Some writers have painted these soldiers as low-life scum, stealing because they lack moral fiber. Perhaps. I’d have to live in a freezing shack without plumbing before I’d judge. And in a place where unemployment, corruption and state-propaganda is high.

Give anyone a gun and not enough food and evil will be done.

Why doesn’t Russia have cities like New York, London or even Shanghai? Why don’t places like the United States have “special operations” in foreign lands, similar to what Russia is doing? I’m not giving an answer.

If I look at city-life during war-time I can’t tell, on the surface, that it’s different from any other time. I can see this today in Kyiv and Moscow. I could see it in World War II footage from New York City and Paris. Sure there were bombed-out buildings and even whole cities burnt to the ground. But for the most part, life in most large cities goes on as usual.

What is the idea of Nation? How is it possible to have a nation where part of its citizens are reading the news and having freshly-ground coffee at a café, while another part is living in the mud and getting blown to bits?

My kids aren’t quick to return my phones calls anymore than citizens in cities are worried about those dying on a battlefield far away.

If you, like me, have been trying to understand the war in Ukraine you understand the depression these thoughts lead to.

Most wars are fought by the poor who live in the same nation — but not the same nation. There’s European poor and Russian poor.

Not apples to apples.

The war has reached a new level of depressiveness because we can’t blame its continuance on Putin. The war is now between Kyiv and Moscow. If Russians in the cities don’t prevent their government from waging war they become the enemy to the Ukrainians — which I believe they have.

Ukraine, as the defender and economically weaker nation either re-defines its borders through military power or it ceases to exist. The young of Ukraine will be a generation that returns calls, to each others, quickly and respectfully.

Selfishness kills.

So will vengeance.