This may be a very anti-Russian post. I don’t intend to commit such a post, so I have got a question. Do you know any Russian multibillionaires spending their fortunes for charities or scientific projects? Realizing passions that can benefit for mankind? It seemed hard to find, but maybe I am wrong.
Recently Jeff Bezos announced, that he is going to extract one of the Apollo 11 engines, that helped Apollo 11 to reach orbit. The engine lays currently few miles under the surface of Atlantic ocean. Bezos was already able to localize it, now he wants to take it to surface and put it in a museum. Nice.
But as I read this news on a Polish news site, 1 comment got my attention. Somebody pointed out that many multibillionaires from western countries spend their fortunes on great and fascinating projects that benefit mankind. Elon Musk and Space X (private space flights) / Tesla Motors (electric cars), Bezos and Blue Origin, Cameron and Deepsea Challenger, Branson and Virgin Galactic / Virgin Oceanic. The list goes on. Bill Gates want to eliminate malaria from this world, Warren Buffet… etc. Even Steve Jobs, who canceled all the charitable programs at Apple, had an opinion of a guy whom we owe a lot. (And who knows, maybe we will owe a lot more, if the leaks about cracking the TV turn out to be true.)
The next thought wasn’t so positive and naturally it concerned the way Russian multibilionaires spend their money, huge yachts (sure Americans also have those), golden Lamborghinis, castles, parties, football teams etc. I don’t intend to condemn them for that. I know that each time an individual is given a resource he desired in a surplus quantity or frequency, then he loses his mind (that and the fact, that money ruins things). For an example: I can see that with cars in Poland. There where very few cars in my country before capitalism, now we’ve shitload of vehicles and everybody drives them, like he’s a fucking king of the road, ooh and the pedestrians and cyclist – absolutely no respect for them. Car is the number 1 user on the road. It’s similar in other former soviet union countries. Compare that to driving culture in Spain, France or Netherlands.
But lets get back to the subject, I know that big private fortunes are something new in Russia. And it takes time to work out a higher culture of managing and spending such resources. For today, I only know of those Russian billionaires who either sit in jail, because Putin didn’t like them or buy golden cars, diamond watches etc. Do you know any Russian billionaires, who spend their money for interesting projects? Scientific? Charities? Who are they? What are their passions? How do we benefit from their projects?