The squalid little authoritarians in Russia rubber stamped a new law yesterday that would "boost the powers of the successor to the Soviet KGB, allowing it to summon people it believes are about to commit a crime and threaten jail for those who disobey its orders." According to Reuters, the law "could be used by the FSB security service to detain opposition activists and independent journalists and undermine President Dmitry Medvedev's promises to foster civil rights."
Vladimir Ulas, of the opposition Communist Party, complained, with no evident trace of irony, that the new law was "a step toward a police state. It is effectively a ban on any real opposition activity." And Ulas, who joined the party in 1981, knows a thing or two about police states.
According to RFE/RFL, police in Moscow broke up a small protest of Yabloko activists and arrested four people protesting the new law in front of the Duma today. And in other depressing Russia news, the children of Saint Petersburg (which is probably due for another name change. Perhaps Putingrad?) are being encouraged to pray for their muscly, bear-killing president.