No wonder so many cultural conservatives, from Pat Buchanan to the leaders of the Russian Orthodox Church, adore Vladimir Putin: he projects bare-chested swagger, and he is also developing a form of Russian cultural conservatism intended as a rejection of Western permissiveness. First, there was the anti-gay propaganda law. Then came the assault on N.G.O.s and on press freedoms, from the printed page to television to the Internet. Now Putin has decided to take on the Russian language—in particular, its florid and flexible lexicon of profanity, known as mat. On Monday, Putin signed legislation that has been floating around the Duma for years: as of July 1st, there will be no swearing in movies and theatrical productions or from the concert stage.