clockOn 9 December, fresh back from Moscow, I wrote a post about time zones and politics. By coincidence, today’s Financial Times carries a full-page article on the same theme. Though I didn’t know it, President Medvedev has recently proposed that Russia’s eleven time zones should be reduced to four. Russian modernists see so many time zones as a drag on the efficiency of the economy. In Soviet times, however, the zones were a source of pride, demonstrating the sheer expanse of the USSR. In China, on the other hand, Beijing time was imposed across the land (though the Uighur population unofficially operates on its own time, two hours behind Beijing). Scientists and doctors argue that time zones are a physical and psychological necessity and they are critical, even of our own one hour switch back and forth between summer and winter time, statistics demonstrating that there are 68% more accidents on the Monday immediately following the switch.