Vladimir Putin has beaten Nobel Laureate "Father" Al Gore to the most coveted title of the year - Time Person of 2007. JK Rowling, who has written some books (I didn't get past page 1 of the first one) came third.
A Tsar is Born
"Gasputin" is in some sense the antithesis of "Father Al". The one is peddling gas and oil, and the other is trying to stop people burning, er, gas and oil.
Only the other day, Greek Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis, whom I "supported" in the recent elections, on the grounds that he looks like Jim Brass off CSI, was in Moscow having "secret" talks with his buddy Vlad. The Greeks are not only building pipelines to carry yet more Russian energy into Europe, they're also buying Mr Putin's armoured vehicles for their military.
They're probably doing this because they felt guilty about nearly giving President P a serious dose of the shits. When he was last in Athens, Kostas treated him to a slap up dinner at a local restaurant. That morning they'd sent the health people in, who confiscated loads of out of date meat and potato croquettes.
Democracy in Action
Putin is coming to the end of his second term as President. As in the US, he's not allowed a third term, so he's going to let one of his pals take over whilst he becomes Prime Minister. After which he can presumably stand again for President.
In true Russian tradition elections have all been going his way. The fact that journalists who disagree too strongly with the goverment seem to have a habit of plunging from high balconies and that opposition politicians such as Gary Kasparov get arrested for anti-government demos has nothing to do with it.
What A Guy!
I feel sure that Jean Knee will feel moved to switch her allegiance from "loser" Al to the more dashing and powerful Vladimir. I get the impression that she's pretty fickle.