Masha Gessen: Rules for Surviving Autocracy

Resist! Resist! Resist! Resist to your last breath, and then once the malignant narcissist is gone, breathe.

Diane Ravitch's blog

Masha Gessen is a Russian-American dissident who writes for the New York Times and the New York Review of Books.

She wrote this article right after the election, on November 10.

This consists of her six rules for surviving an autocracy. Here are a few excerpts:

“Rule #1: Believe the autocrat. He means what he says. Whenever you find yourself thinking, or hear others claiming, that he is exaggerating, that is our innate tendency to reach for a rationalization. This will happen often: humans seem to have evolved to practice denial when confronted publicly with the unacceptable. Back in the 1930s, The New York Times assured its readers that Hitler’s anti-Semitism was all posture. More recently, the same newspaper made a telling choice between two statements made by Putin’s press secretary Dmitry Peskov following a police crackdown on protesters in Moscow: “The police acted mildly—I would have liked them to…

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11 thoughts on “Masha Gessen: Rules for Surviving Autocracy

  1. I can not believe who this nation can support a dictator or several of these articles speak for themselves. I was born in the heart of the intelligence and education of 2 Nations (Cuba and the USSR) As it is possible that Russia is divided for a worse future, the cold war is over and the most dangerous moment of humanity has just begun. With us 3 countries and how they have been governed. Cuba and the Soviet Union mother and the United States of America. Imigré of Cuba and Russia I abandon, I betray the whole world and now this country also has betrayed the linertad. Vladimir Lenin; Vladimir Putin ; Finally Fidel Castro and now Donald Trump. THE LIBERTY IS ENDED DURED FIDEL CASTRO AND REFUSED DONALD TRUMP BUT TRUMP AND PUTIN ARE COMPLIMENTARY COMPLIMENTS UNCREIBLE THAT PROBLEMS ENFREBT. FREEDOM ENDEDЯ не

    http://rbth.com/international/2016/11/26/russia-responds-to-the-death-of-fidel-castro_651287

    могу entrnder комп это naccion может поддерживать диктатора или несколько этих статей говорят сами за себя. Я родился в самом сердце интеллекта и educacación 2 Наций (Куба и СССР) Как это возможно, что Россия делится на худшее будущее, холодная война закончилась, и только начал самый опасный момент человечества. Conosco 3 страны и как они регулируются. Куба и мать советской Uninon и в Соединенных Штатах Америки. Я imigré Кубы и России отказались от меня, я предал всех, и теперь эта страна предала linertad tambieh. В. И. Ленин; Владимир Путин; наконец, Фидель Кастро и теперь Дональд Трамп. СВОБОДА БОЛЬШЕ НЕ УМЕР И Фидель Кастро Дональдом Трампом [ Resurrection]Trump и Путин, но проблемы, которые JEMELOS Тоталитарный . DON’T GIVE UP FIGHT AND FIGHT . СВОБОДА GONE

    • History teaches is that no civilization/country is safe from corruption and people like the malignant narcissist Littlefingers Donald Trump. We are living through history repeating itself in the worst way. It’s happened before and if our species survives Littlefingers, it will happen again.

      • Lloyed this comment or post is an incomplete true is a dark truth and the freedom is not in Cuba and this poet won’t fool me .

        Kathy and I were in Cuba for a week. I think I am back on track with the blog. As well, I submitted a draft of my dissertation to the committee and am waiting to hear back from them.

        This is not what I want to read but this person has to be hidden the true truth for some reason . Because he should tell the darkness that Cuba is SINCE 1959 or maybe this poet is thinking to immigrate to Cuba because Castro did and Donald Trump resuscitate.
        I’m no happy at all with this poet .

      • Lloyed. Я понимаю, и, возможно, другие игнорируют меня; это не то, что отвлекает меня так, моя страна nacimento является Куба, но СССР увидел меня растут, между советскими или rrusos я вырос, я никогда не был доволен повторных использований, потому что в России я не был рожден, и кубинская или гражданство России не Я и сейчас в Америке. Я не доволен. Я Lloyed жили три диктатур, Кастро, СССР, а теперь России и друга снова свободу моей левой руки. Llego Litlerfinger и мир этой страны .it не легко, но это было невозможно эфира. Я могу справиться с разговор на русском языке, а на испанском и Dunald Trump этого не делают. Litlefinger только sorack Ложь Языки. Потому что в Америке является inteenational инглиш язык, но не больше .Lloyed languale Мандарин не международный?

      • No Friend is Russian and now I want to forget everything that has to do with RUSSIA. SPANISH I DO NOT SERVE HERE THE RUSSIAN TAMPOCO AND ENGLISH NOBODY LISTEN ONLY YOU AND GOD FIRST. GOD HEARS UNDERSTANDING RUSSIAN SPANISH, ENGLISH, MANDARIN AND MY RUSSIAN IS NOT GOOD. BUT GREEK I DO NOT WHAT I KNOW . GRREK ONLY I REMEMBER A DERTY BOAT FROM GREEK AND I FIGHT WITH THE CAPITAN BECAUSE HE TOLD ME M.F ..
        I WOULD LIKE TO LEARN MANDARIN BUT I’M NOT YOUNG. MY MIND IS VERY TIRED FRIEND I HAVE GIVEN YOU A LOT OF WORK. READ AND STUDY AND NOW LEARN MANDARIN. I can not sir

      • My mind feels tired sometimes too. I’ve been thinking about doing more of this:

        How to Relax Your Mind

        http://www.wikihow.com/Relax-Your-Mind

        In the last year, I got rid of my smartphone and replaced it with a dumb phone. When I shutoff my desktop computer, I’m pretty much disconnected from the internet. Today I finished up a project to add a wall light in the living room and then spend a few hours doing yard work. It helped to relax my mind.

      • It’s good idea , and I have to relax my mind is not worth it because I’m stressed out your mind to the point I want to get rid off of this doom fhone . It’s not the smart era . The intelligence involved human brain no dooms phones and I need to crash this smart guy need a new brain I mean fresh because is not over yet . It’s not who I’m IT’S who I know and what I should do or say I take the consequences.
        Relax you fight for this country . Now is time for others to do what they should is not about me is about the whole planet that is why my main need the peace of God as well your but Litlefingers will have what he deserve it . His time ( no more sweet life for him )
        To many people who that Trump ( paid back , EVERYONE PAID SOONER OR LATER )
        I’M TIRED AND IS TIME TO OFF THIS DOOM PHONE 📱
        THANKS VERY MUCH IS BEEN A PLEASURE EXCHANGED EMAILS ( I LOVE GOOD PEOPLE I DON’T HUNG UP WITH EVILS )
        MAY GOD BLESS YOU AND THE FORETS IS A GREAT AND PEACEFUL PLACE TO REST AND BE FAR AWAY FROM MANY DOOMS PEOPLES OR POR PEOPLES ( 1.5 % of the city’s people are running the city and the other 98.5 ( running out the gas , thy brain are super tired because they have no money to pay they bills.
        Take care .

      • Lloyed. I understand you and others may ignore me; That is not something that deviates me from the road, my country of birth is Cuba, but the USSR saw me grow, I grew up with Soviets or Russians, I was never happy with the reuses because in Rusįa I was not born and the Cuban or Russian citizenship did not I have and now in the United States. I’m not happy either. Lloyed I have lived 3 dictatorships, La de Castro, La of the USSR and now Russia and Amigo again left the freedom on my side. Litlerfinger arrived and the peace of this country was gone. It’s not easy but impossible. I can handle the conversation in Russian as well as Dunhall Trump do not. Litlefinger only sorack the Lie Languages. Because in English is the international language but no more. Is it in the Mandarin of international languale?
        It’s not fear because I can speak Russian and Spanish and English is not an easy way to tell the truth because I am not an English speaker.
        Hello I told you Lloyed where is the freedom?
        In heaven . We need God Kingdom and no more abuse against the human rights and the life will be a pleasure because God is LOVE but
        TRUMP IS AN DEMON SON OF THE DEVIL

      • Littlefingers is acting like he is a dictator, but he isn’t a dictator yet. The U.S. Supreme Court has the power to block him and so does the Congress if they ever wake up and decide to impeach him. Who knows, one day soon, the evidence that shows he is a traitor and he accepted a big bribe from Putin might put Littlefingers in prison for the rest of his life.

      • Lloyed. I have never said what you are going to read now, I was trained by the intelligence of the old union society and I am sorry to say that Michail Worbacheh was not a good president either. Mikhail Gorvachech lied to Ronald-Reagan-Mikhail-Gorbachev knew that Russia-Putin would arrive To be more dangerous. Everything was well planned, I studied with the Russians and I was not surprised by the news of the berlin wall because Castro and the Russian leaders had spied for many decades on U.S.A. There are still many spies inside this country, it is a very delicate thing but Gorvacheh supposedly says that Putin wants to kill him is something that is impossible, because I know that the Cuban government has spied on this nation for decades and now espionage has reached a That billions of have gone to the Cuban government. If Gorvacheh knew that Putin, Castro and Trump hate me, he was not telling his 85-year-old that he wanted to get rid off of him. Russia planned everything for billions to end in Russia. This country lost everything when the Berlin Wall fell silent on the C.I. A It committed a very great herror. – To allow that Fidel Castro seized the power and 2 – that the crisis of the missiles was a plan so that they signed that never more could be attacked to Cuba the. C.I. TO . He protected Castro but not JFK. C.I. A should have got rid off putin and Castro but now i told the true even if jesus was killed for telling the truth. I say that in this country there are hundreds of companies diverting billions to Cuba. The true is that everything was a plan and the C. I. A has no other choice than to get rid of Litlerfinger. Donald Trump is not going to be in the power, not much sir. C.I.A and F.B.I. They have to stop Putin and all these ruts that are stealing trillions. Schoolchildren have diverted billions to other countries. F.B.I. Have no more Choice stop those Crocks and the C. I. A FIND OUT BUT ASAP AS GET RID OF Mr. Litlefingers . Federal Wiseness Protection is needed or my Secrets will go with me to the tomb but I can’t let evils people who have no natural affection judged me by the cover. I’m sure that are much more information than this. I’m going to tell you that Posada Carriles was busted by the C.I. A ( WHY ? )
        The C.I.A should let Mr. Carriles pull the tiger and get out of Castro .
        People are Dooms because that was true 192 Cubans Died . A Cuban plane was blowed and Cuban Athletes died . My question is why if Castro pointed at Posadas Carriles as the guy who planed the tragedy crash ? Castro’s pointed but Castro’s could planned . The C.I.Ashuld stop the Crash as well should not get in sometimes that WASEN’T the’r @bussines ” @ C.I.A HOLD TO MANY THINGS THAT THIS COUNTRY SHOULD KNOW FIRTS NO ME OR OTHERS ( FROM HERE TO RUSSIAN IS THE ONLY PROBLEM ) NOW FROM RUSSIAN TO HERE OR RUSSIAN TO HERE BUT HERE IS THE PROBLEM BECAUSE THIS COUNTRY SHOULD NOT PROVIDE THE ROKETS TO THE RUSSIAN. WHY ? BECAUSE NO MONEY ?
        IT’S BETTER A MUSEUM HERE AS THE SAME FRANCE 🇫🇷 HAS A MUSEUM WITH THE SUPERSONICS COMERCIAL JETS THAT AFTER 911 People STOP paid only 4 hour or more to New York ?
        The Concorde with the supersonic era and now American is sued the French why ?
        America need to stop those who are joining ( Mr. Putin GET RID of Trump or the C. I . A .
        Litlefingers can move to the most expensive ( MOSKOT )
        Ether way buy Buy or Boom to Littlefinger ( JFK was not an evil as well his kid but JFK the blue bloods gone but Castro , Putin and Trump?
        I’M NOT HOLD ANY MORE PROVE BECAUSE MY KIDS BOORN HERE AND KIDS ARE KIDS MY OR NOT KIDS DON’T DESERVE PAID WHAT OTHERS DO WRONG .
        I’M NOT RUSIAN ; I’M NOT CUBAN BUT I’M AMERICAN IS NOT WHERE WE BORN IS WHERE MY HEART IS AND I LOVE MY PEOPLE I LOVE THE JUSTICE,,,,

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