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10 Pieces of Advice for Vladimir Putin

Vlad, I’ll just come out and say it. I think you’re awesome. You’re one of my favorite Russian premiers of all time. You’re like Gorbachev, without the weird splotchy head thing. You’re a manly man. A manly man who does manly things in manly places. I turn on the TV, and bam, there’s a picture of you playing hockey on the Volga or hunting without a shirt. Forget Gorbachev, you’re the Russian Teddy Roosevelt (sans sound environmental policy)!


But even though you “won” that “free” “election,” Russia doesn’t seem to share my enthusiasm these days for their “democratically-elected leader.” There’s rioting in the streets. There’s non-semaphore related flag-waving. I’m here to respectfully offer some advice to help you pull through these tough times.

1.    Throw Diamond Jubilee: People love a good Jubilee. Even if it celebrates the reign of someone not democratically elected (like you!).

2.    Fight Rocky: You can totally win. I know you guys still probably have that special Ivan Drago liquid treadmill somewhere. Pull it out of the closet and get going.

3.    Grow Beard, Change Name to ‘Ras-Putin’: People love beards and people love history. Rasputin was in power for a long time!

4.    Build Summer Camp for Dissidents in Chernobyl: See if anyone listens to your opposition when they have two heads. Don’t call it a “gulag” though, or no one will come.

5.    Gulags: Obviously. If you’re going to imprison people, at least be retro about it.

6.    Statue of Yourself: Stone, fifty feet. Middle of the biggest public square you guys’ve got. Preferably holding one arm aloft in salute, and creepy eyes with no pupils. Although, word of warning: These statues look the best when they’re being pulled down with ropes.

7.    New Campaign Slogan: Da, We Can.”

8.    Justin Bieber at Your Birthday Party: This kind of thing totally worked out for Ghaddafi.

9.    Tweet More: C’mon dude. Take Russia into the twenty-first century by Twittering more. Your handle should be strong (@RussianChamp) or adorable (@VladyPoo). When you’re shooting critically endangered Amur Tigers with a tranq gun, we want to know about it.

10. Wear More Black: It makes you look thinner and brings out your cold, soulless, icy-blue eyes.

Apply these lessons, and you’ll be way more popular. Sure, not everyone will be pleased with you, but there are gulags for that.

Respectfully Yours,

Go Russia!