Paul LePage’s various antics and commentary are marvelous political theater. But when he appeared at a press conference with Russian nested dolls of Bill Clinton, one inside the other (“matrioshka”), he showed himself to be really confused. (I was confused; is Bill Clinton responsible for LePage’s economic record? His tantrums? His views of citizens’ initiatives and how democracy works?)

As a specialist on Russia, I would therefore like to offer an appropriate Paul LePage Matrioshka to set the record straight. The “Paul LePage” consists of five nested dolls. The outside one is Paul in blackface, the next inside is a drug dealer from Waterbury with a binder filled with news reports on Paul’s escapades; the next, Paul with a telephone leaving messages on answering machines; the fourth, LePage holding the Bill of RIghts in one hand and a torn-up newspaper in the other; and the inner, tiniest doll is a new product, “Lepage Petroleum Jelly.”

Paul Josephson


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