Discuss culture, living, traveling, relocating, dating or anything related to Russia, Ukraine, or the former Soviet Republics.
Putin's reputed wealth is a matter of conjecture, said conjecture being first raised by the oligarchs (who without question looted the country) he tossed out or into jail. Anti-Putin propaganda is probably the biggest growth industry in the West today. Since everything I've ever seen the guy do or say seems to be rooted in an idealistic vision of Russia's future, and since he first made his bones with the Russian people by tossing Yeltsin-era oligarchs, I'll need to see plenty of solid, persuasive links before I'll believe he's either a thug or a predator on the economy.
Or state the case in your own words. I've seen it just assumed for years, but I've never seen it actually made. I mean, if he's a thug for ruthlessly suppressing savage Wahibbi terrorists in Chechnya, well (a) they had it coming (b) he probably wasn't half as ruthless the U.S. probably would have been with savages within the country's borders, and (c) Chechnya today is one of the most peaceful and loyal parts of Russia.
Tsar- Keep in mind: any of those things can be instituted by an authoritarian leader. On a side-note, look at the term "authority" for a second. If one were to look at the person doing an action as the "author" of that action, then someone having "authority" is more of the concept of a hi-jacking. I've said it before: that situation is most reminiscent of demonic possession, not a parasite leeching off of someone. That idea doesn't really make all that much sense, either- considering that it's the idea of substitution & one person is not the equivalent of another. It's the counterfactual idea of negating that disparity between people- the structure of the situation is that there isn't the same instance of person.
It's more the concept of coercive inducement through prompting. Guilt trips play a big role in that, because some people play on the social consideration that other people have (the "What if a bad guy did that?" style of reasoning: that if bad guy in a different situation did what you did, it would cause a problem... so you're ruining the world & you're hurting everybody else that doesn't deserve it). They're looking to get people to react to their imagination, basically- as if there's an exchange of situation through imagination. This causes a major problem in the justice department, also. The situation functionally works out as "someone is as guilty as someone else could be. so it doesn't matter what you did."
I know self-defense is kind of hard to argue at this point, given that it's imposing a situation on them & cancelling their endeavors, but self-defense really isn't a collaboration with the attacker, anyway. It was never going to be anything other than impasse.
No doubt Putin is a nationalist, though he sees himself as some kind of Czar. Journalists and others, Russians such as Garry Kasparov, can attest to the fact that opposing Putin may mean you end up dead. To imply that if you oppose what Putin is doing, you are some kind of Western media dupe is a bit much. Repeatedly in the past though, Putin has made statements that were ignored in the West due to their straight up lack of political correctness. He no doubt has total contempt for Obama, and sees playing Obama as child's play.
His background as a career KGB man, would of course make him suspect. Its a bit like a former KKK man working for a civil rights organization. It seems he opposed Yeltsin era oligarchs WHEN THEY OPPOSED HIM. Otherwise, not so much. That was his deal. Do your business, but DO NOT oppose me.
I would withhold final judgement on Putin till I know whether the Russian people and Russian culture are capable of functioning in a democratic style. I have doubts at this point, but I think that is the eventual direction. For many Russians, I think a Czar-like figure is comforting.
I didn't say that Russia was perfect.
I was pointing out the failure of democracy and republics. All modern dictatorships are also failures. It's that every leader on the planet is either corrupt, almost entirely self-serving, or only cares about looting for their own personal fortune without regards to their country.
The world is ruled by tyrants, oligarchs, democratic ideals, plutocrats, and corporations. There are no virtuous leaders. An authoritarian could build a corrupt country or something like a utopia. It all depends on how the power is used, but I would rather live in a good authoritarian system over a good democratic system. No one is ever free is the world and freedom is a myth.
Authoritarian systems could be good or bad. Republics always degenerate into oligarchies which ultimately loot everything from the people into the hands of a few. Every country in the world is an oligarchy and that won't change.
Hitler performed an economic miracle because he had authoritarian power. The tsars like Peter the Great or Alexander II did other good things for Russia. Marcus Aurelias was a philosopher king. Constantine ended the persecution of the Christians in ancient Rome. Not all authoritarians do good, or only do good, but authoritarians that use their power to better their country and all their people are the only ones that can rule effectively and efficiently.
Look at the gridlock, the corruption, how they are bought, how corporations and donors buy candidates, and the media chooses who gets airtime and shown to the voters. It's all the same and anyone that believes democracy exists is a fool and the same for people that believe America is a republic. America is an oligarchy and a banana republic.
Dictators who have created prosperity:
King Solomon the Wise
Napoleon III (France)
Machine politicians who have created prosperity
Caesar Augustus (Octavian)
Machine politicians who have f***ed up an economy:
Commies who have slightly improved an economy:
Commies who have totally f***ed up an economy:
Republicans/Democrats who created prosperity
Republicans/Democrats who f***ed up an economy:
Not a rigorous analysis, just off the top of my head, no careful thought here. Just saying that it seems to me that democracy versus dictatorship has little to do with prosperity. It's WHAT the government does or doesnt do, not WHO does it.
I guess your somewhat correct in that any government type can be prosperous. I wouldn't exactly say that Ronald Reagan created true prosperity because the wealthy benefited the most by Ronald Reagan's policies and ultimately is said to be one of the Presidents that helped push America towards the current banana republic it is today. I also agree that Lenin completely f***ed up the Russian economy and destroyed their chance at more territorial gains from WWI.
Most of the arts were also funded by dictators. Science was also funded by many dictators (excluding many European monarchs during the period when the Catholic Church was against many scientific research and development).
I'll add George W. Bush and Obama to leaders who have f***ed up an economy. Some would also add Herbert Hoover but I believe he was correct in not stepping in to save anyone. Wall Street and all the banks should have been allowed to go bankrupt and disappear, regardless of how much damage it would do to the financial system or the nation's economy in the short-term.
I'll also add Nixon to the list of Presidents that f***ed up an economy. Taking America off the gold peg and allowing it to become pure fiat, allowing America to take more debt than it could repay, and opening up China to American business.
Yeah Nixon and Carter both did that, in phases. Nixon started it, Carter finished it.
Both democratically elected, neither one a dictator or classic machine politician.
What period is that?
Universities were invented by the Catholic Church.
Michelangelo was employed by the Catholic Church.
Galileo was a professor at a Catholic University.
So what period are you referring to?
The Catholic Church did fund many arts and many of the arts in Europe post-Roman Empire were indeed created by the Catholic Church. They also helped contribute to science. At the time the Catholic Church had great influence in Europe and were on level with aristocrats and sometime the power of the popes rivaled or surpassed kings. Tithings were widely practiced.
Both the European monarchies and Catholic Church helped contribute to advancements in the arts and sciences. Both can be called absolute monarchies, with the monarchies hereditary and the pope basically a elected theocratic monarch by the cardinals that were like aristocrats in those times.
Going back to the Catholic Church, during some periods they didn't want certain inventions or discoveries revealed. An example is that one of the beliefs was the sun revolved around the Earth, they didn't want Galileo to share the discovery that the Earth revolved around the sun because that was not in agreement with their teaching at the time. It was only during some periods or moments they didn't really want certain scientific inventions.
In some cases, science does lead to a decrease in morals like we now see like contraception and abortion. If those two relatively modern discoveries didn't happen, then women wouldn't be as much of whores, harlots, and sluts as they are now. Then there's the issue of GMO foods that are toxic and harmful. It takes an authoritarian leader to ultimately control the people and enforce morals. Some scientific inventions shouldn't be allowed for the greater good but most science is usually a benefit to the greater good.
Republics and democracies eventually deteriorate into oligarchies that ultimately cut the arts first and then either cut science or limit the advancements to the elites only and withhold the progress of science to increase profits. Some studies indicate that many inventions and discoveries have been suppressed, that the pentagon and US military is withholding technology 100 years ahead of current technology, and corporations have 20-50 years of new technology stored up. All to keep earning more money and pilfer the wealth of people.
Plutocrats ultimately don't care who is in power, they can go anywhere and have no vested interest in any one country. They can easily invest in any other country to escape and continue the cycle of migration, assimilating, pilfering, then pilfering by profiteering off the collapse of the new country, then moving on to migrate to another country.
Mayer Amschel Rothschild said "Let me issue and control a Nation's money and I care not who makes its laws." That sums up the current plutocrats and oligarchs. The Rothschilds control the money supply along with the fellow plutocratic elites, and corporations basically mint money and earn a record profit at the expense of progress and the people.
Russia has a melancholy underbelly that keeps it down. It also has very corrupt people who keep everybody down. Thievery all across the government; in Russian fortune favors those who steal.
How can we win if we are so easy to sell and buy. How can we prosper if the president is so high and everyone steals.
This is a different view:
A brain is a terrible thing to wash!
Yeah, well maybe someday someone will make the case against Putin's Russia with a fact or two, but I'm not holding my breath.
The second of the two videos above implies that anti-Semitism is a major force in Russia, and that the current government in Ukraine is fighting against this evil on behalf of humankind. That's kind of surprising, given that a substantial portion of the regime in Ukraine consists of Nazis. That's NAZI'S, as in Hitler supporters, professional anti-semites. For true.
But no reason to suppose this issue will ever be anything but a fact-free zone. The propagandists have had it covered like a glove for months.
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