Russia's Economic Decline and Future Implications

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Navarro
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Fri Aug 05, 2016 1:27 am

Vladimir Putin: We should make the situation clear straight away so that your clients don’t get the idea that it’s better to wait and not take out a mortgage loan now at the current rate, which is 12 percent, isn’t it?

German Gref: That’s right.

Vladimir Putin: It’s better not to wait until it goes down to 11 percent because inflation is running at a faster rate, and so whoever is ready and has the desire, it’s better to do it now.

---

German Gref: We finished the first half of the year with a record profit. We made a net profit of 229 billion roubles over the first six months of the year.

Vladimir Putin: How does this compare with last year’s results?

German Gref: It’s up 180 percent on last year’s results. It is difficult to compare to last year because that was a particularly difficult year.
http://en.kremlin.ru/events/president/news/52648

Putin says inflation is on the rise in Russia. Meanwhile, the corporations are making record profits. Is economic turmoil and widening income desparity in Russia's future? Is the Ruble in freefall? Yes, yes it is. The Ruble has lost more than 91% of its value since 1999, and is currently undergoing a sharp decline in value.
Image
http://i.bullfax.com/imgs/b005038b1855f ... 31650e.jpg

The current sharp downward trend of the Ruble appears to clearly coincide with the sanctions imposed on Russia by the EU in 2014. If Russia's economy is in collapse, then we may anticipate desperate actions from Russia to correct this. If the current collapse is a result of EU doing, Russia could easily interpret this as an act of war - economic warfare, which threatens the stability and prosperity of Russia. As such, we can anticipate a dramatic response directed at the EU and its allies, perhaps including Russia's long arch nemesis, the United States.

In the mind of Putin, Russia must survive at all costs, yet the EU and its allies appear to stand in direct contravention of that philosophy. To secure a bright future for Russia must then mean the defeat of the EU and its allies. As Putin's desperation increases, so too must his belief in such a philosophy.

Putin doesn't want a Europe firmly under his control. He needs it. Desperately needs it. The only question is, what action will he take to achieve this goal? He was a career agent of the KGB. He was the head of the FSB. At a minimum, I anticipate there will be some strong usage of the cloak and dagger in the future, most prominently the dagger. If the EU won't play nice, then he must either force them to, or replace them with someone who will. His own people. Directly or indirectly. Through coercision. Through assasination. Through war if necessary.

Following JFK, there is not an American president who would dare stand in oppisition to CIA. Perhaps the future is one where no EU leader would dare oppose the objectives of the FSB. I anticipate this to be the best-case scenario for the west. The alternative may be eventual total war. Russia must survive. At all costs.
PBS wrote: ...the government warned that Russia was heading towards a recession...Among the causes: the weakening ruble, sanctions imposed by the West...
What Putin said: "However, it is equally certain – and I would like to stress this – that there will be what experts call a positive rebound. …
How long will this take? In a worst-case scenario, I believe it would take a couple of years. I repeat: after that, growth is inevitable, due to a changing foreign economic situation among other things."
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/artic ... omic-pain/
I am very curious to know what "other things" Putin has in mind, especially since they are "inevitable."
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Worldwatcher
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Fri Aug 05, 2016 2:32 am

Eh, I don't think war is on the cards just yet.
"There's a cold war coming,
On the radio I heard
Baby it's a violent world"

- Coldplay, Life In Technicolor II

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Navarro
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Fri Aug 05, 2016 4:59 am

Worldwatcher wrote:Eh, I don't think war is on the cards just yet.
In 1914 the prince of Austria was assasinated by some nobody. That prince's name was Ferdinand. Archduke Ferdinand. Maybe you've heard of him. This assasination out of nowhere ignited The Great War, better known today as World War 1. A nineteen year old high school dropout and manual laborer set the world's great powers at war with one another. His greatest skills in life was carrying logs for chump change, yet he alone thrust 32 countries into a war which caused the deaths of over 38 million people. One man. A high school dropout and loser. Nobody saw it coming.

War is always in the cards.
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Worldwatcher
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Fri Aug 05, 2016 5:14 am

Everyone knows the story of the Archduke.
Yes, war is always in the cards, but my comment was addressing the actual topic of the thread. The unsourced parts of the op I presume you wrote yourself. In the sourced parts, there is NO mention of warfare by Putin.

Yes, some of what you have said about Russia is correct, but I find fault with your assumptions of Putin, and greater, how people behave. Have you met him? How do you know what he wants, or how he behaves? Why is your analysis valid and somebody else's isn't? Who are you to tell us what he will do, when you view him over the internet.

To the board: Nothing to be afraid of here, the argument Navarro is presenting is based on his personal opinion. The sky is not falling (yet).
"There's a cold war coming,
On the radio I heard
Baby it's a violent world"

- Coldplay, Life In Technicolor II

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hrng
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Fri Aug 05, 2016 5:33 am

Worldwatcher wrote:Everyone knows the story of the Archduke.
Yes, war is always in the cards, but my comment was addressing the actual topic of the thread. The unsourced parts of the op I presume you wrote yourself. In the sourced parts, there is NO mention of warfare by Putin.

Yes, some of what you have said about Russia is correct, but I find fault with your assumptions of Putin, and greater, how people behave. Have you met him? How do you know what he wants, or how he behaves? Why is your analysis valid and somebody else's isn't? Who are you to tell us what he will do, when you view him over the internet.

To the board: Nothing to be afraid of here, the argument Navarro is presenting is based on his personal opinion. The sky is not falling (yet).
You're not grasping the situation here - Karl von Habsburg is in direct danger! Someone needs to save him!

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Fri Aug 05, 2016 7:16 am

Worldwatcher wrote:Everyone knows the story of the Archduke.
Yes, war is always in the cards, but my comment was addressing the actual topic of the thread. The unsourced parts of the op I presume you wrote yourself. In the sourced parts, there is NO mention of warfare by Putin.

Yes, some of what you have said about Russia is correct, but I find fault with your assumptions of Putin, and greater, how people behave. Have you met him? How do you know what he wants, or how he behaves? Why is your analysis valid and somebody else's isn't? Who are you to tell us what he will do, when you view him over the internet.

To the board: Nothing to be afraid of here, the argument Navarro is presenting is based on his personal opinion. The sky is not falling (yet).
Wars have been fought over salt, and yet you poo-poo the idea that crippling the Bear's economy could lead to dramatic action. Fair enough.

However, I will point out that Russia's economy does appear to be suffering from severe recession with experts expecting that trend to continue. Meanwhile, the trend does appear to show a link between the recent sharp decline and the sanctions placed on Russia by the EU. I didn't say that war was a certainty, but a possibility. I specifically remarked on another possibility in the original post. Obviously, that part is based on my opinion, which is based on the facts at hand - an educated guess.

You don't expect war? Fine. Neither do I, in fact. It is, however, a possibility. In fact, it's probability is increased by the economic circumstances I've remarked on. I didn't say "the sky is falling" nor do I expect anyone, including you, thought that I had. I did however indeed indicate your analysis is invalid, because you're statement was "Eh, I don't think war is on the cards just yet." Your retort even began with the sentence "Yes, war is always in the cards," which stands in agreement with me when I said "war is always in the cards."

As far as I can tell, this is a meaningless debate fueled only by your hurt feelings. I had no intention to upset you, and I do regret how my response made you feel. I never the less stand by what I said to you, just as you apparently do.
Worldwatcher wrote:To the board: Nothing to be afraid of here
Foolish.
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coldFusionGuy
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Fri Aug 05, 2016 11:18 pm

Navarro wrote:
Worldwatcher wrote:Everyone knows the story of the Archduke.
Yes, war is always in the cards, but my comment was addressing the actual topic of the thread. The unsourced parts of the op I presume you wrote yourself. In the sourced parts, there is NO mention of warfare by Putin.

Yes, some of what you have said about Russia is correct, but I find fault with your assumptions of Putin, and greater, how people behave. Have you met him? How do you know what he wants, or how he behaves? Why is your analysis valid and somebody else's isn't? Who are you to tell us what he will do, when you view him over the internet.

To the board: Nothing to be afraid of here, the argument Navarro is presenting is based on his personal opinion. The sky is not falling (yet).
Wars have been fought over salt, and yet you poo-poo the idea that crippling the Bear's economy could lead to dramatic action. Fair enough.

However, I will point out that Russia's economy does appear to be suffering from severe recession with experts expecting that trend to continue. Meanwhile, the trend does appear to show a link between the recent sharp decline and the sanctions placed on Russia by the EU. I didn't say that war was a certainty, but a possibility. I specifically remarked on another possibility in the original post. Obviously, that part is based on my opinion, which is based on the facts at hand - an educated guess.

You don't expect war? Fine. Neither do I, in fact. It is, however, a possibility. In fact, it's probability is increased by the economic circumstances I've remarked on. I didn't say "the sky is falling" nor do I expect anyone, including you, thought that I had. I did however indeed indicate your analysis is invalid, because you're statement was "Eh, I don't think war is on the cards just yet." Your retort even began with the sentence "Yes, war is always in the cards," which stands in agreement with me when I said "war is always in the cards."

As far as I can tell, this is a meaningless debate fueled only by your hurt feelings. I had no intention to upset you, and I do regret how my response made you feel. I never the less stand by what I said to you, just as you apparently do.
Worldwatcher wrote:To the board: Nothing to be afraid of here
Foolish.
From a statecraft standpoint, as of right now it is not realistic for Russia to declare war; the easiest solution would be to wait until the US and NATO are desperate and vulnerable, and then "help out" with the promise of removed sanctions. The nationalism in Russia is not nearly as powerful as it is in China; believe it or not the average Russian doesn't want war with the US.

As to the comment on the archduke, the German Kaiser wrote in his diary immediately following the assassination that there was no reason for Austria-Hungary to go to war. They did anyway. Why? Nationalism was strong in Austria-Hungary. Having written the Austrians a blank check, the Kaiser had no choice. Russia then declared war on Germany and Austria-Hungary because they needed to protect little brother Serbia. While the conditions which created the Great War are similar, we aren't yet in our version of what became known as the July Crisis. Something dramatic (such as Chinese fisherman shooting at either a USN or a Filipino Naval ship and killing one of the leaders of government) would have to happen. That, or tensions could continue to build until a country feels it has no choice but to give another a "bloody nose" (looking at China). The latter scenario is what helped to kick off the Peloponnesian War of Athens against Sparta, and is the foundation of Thucydides' book on the subject. Thucydides is considered the father of the study of international affairs.

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Navarro
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Sat Aug 06, 2016 12:08 am

coldFusionGuy wrote: From a statecraft standpoint, as of right now it is not realistic for Russia to declare war; the easiest solution would be to wait until the US and NATO are desperate and vulnerable, and then "help out" with the promise of removed sanctions. The nationalism in Russia is not nearly as powerful as it is in China; believe it or not the average Russian doesn't want war with the US.

As to the comment on the archduke, the German Kaiser wrote in his diary immediately following the assassination that there was no reason for Austria-Hungary to go to war. They did anyway. Why? Nationalism was strong in Austria-Hungary. Having written the Austrians a blank check, the Kaiser had no choice. Russia then declared war on Germany and Austria-Hungary because they needed to protect little brother Serbia. While the conditions which created the Great War are similar, we aren't yet in our version of what became known as the July Crisis. Something dramatic (such as Chinese fisherman shooting at either a USN or a Filipino Naval ship and killing one of the leaders of government) would have to happen. That, or tensions could continue to build until a country feels it has no choice but to give another a "bloody nose" (looking at China). The latter scenario is what helped to kick off the Peloponnesian War of Athens against Sparta, and is the foundation of Thucydides' book on the subject. Thucydides is considered the father of the study of international affairs.
By no means did I intend to suggest that war will happen tomorrow, but that it is a potential outcome of the events taking place. America and Russia have been repeatedly at the brink over war over the past few decades. The Cuban Missile Crisis. An American destroyer encountered a Soviet boomer attempting to cross the picket. The destroyer fired warning shots at the boomer, which convinced its captain that the USA and USSR were in a state of war. He ordered his SLBMs ready for launch, but required three senior officers to agree. One didn't. In 1968 a USAF B52 carrying a nuclear payload flew over Thule AFB and crashed nearby. The weapon never detonated, but had it crashed into Thule and the weapon then detonated, America would have believed a nuclear attack had just taken place against a SAC air base, and thus a sneak attack was underway. In 1983 Soviet EWR detected that an American missile attack against the Soviet Union was under way. The commander in charge couldn't believe it, and so he chose not to believe it, disregarding the warnings, which turned out to be faults in the system. I could go on, but I'm sure that you've heard of these incidents.

We've nearly destroyed one another on dozens of occasions. It's not unreasonable to suspect that one day we will. Statistically, it even seems unlikely that we should have survived this long. We appear to have had several orders of magnitude greater luck than we should have. Again, I'm not saying that the Russian's are planning for a war tomorrow, nor am I saying that they've already committed to war and are preparing for it now. I'm saying that it could happen, and there's reasons for it to happen. The catalyst for war exists. However, that still wasn't even my argument in the original post. My argument was that the catalyst for a dramatic action from the Russians existed, not necessarily war itself.

I appreciate your post in any case. Very well thought out.
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