Starship Trooper
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#21
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(Original post by TCA2b)
TBF they enjoy that power because it benefits politicians inside the establishment clique. The minute it ceased to, it would go. Which should further highlight how corrupt it is.
I'm not so convinced of that anymore. This is in part because of just how dysfunctional the US state is.
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TCA2b
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#22
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(Original post by Starship Trooper)
Agreed

Russia has a lot if problems, no ones denying that. But things are getting better in Russia. In the west the reverse is true. Putin doesn't need to have 10k troops protecting him in Moscow and there aren't mass protests of people that hate Russia that want to tear down their history and heritage.
Most popular Prez in history. :rofl:
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TCA2b
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#23
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(Original post by Starship Trooper)
I'm not so convinced of that anymore. This is in part because of just how dysfunctional the US state is.
I just think they're intertwined at a deeper level than (nominally) elected politicians. The US has its own permanent bureaucracy, with its own set of entrenched interests, which for now Big Tech seems to be serving rather well, no doubt in part because it owes its origins to some of those bureaucracies. The government has all the legislative power in the world to put a break on what these companies are doing in regards to censorship. It's even better in a sense than outright government censorship, because it is conducted through a third party. While I don't doubt that some billionaires have a lot of sway in the US, the Big Tech guys strike me more as useful lapdogs that are rewarded for their 'service' than those pulling the strings.
Last edited by TCA2b; 1 week ago
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Starship Trooper
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Meanwhile in totally not corrupt USA:

https://nypost.com/2021/04/05/man-ac...sked-for-cash/

And don't even get me started on people like Hunter Biden ...
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Starship Trooper
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(Original post by TCA2b)
I just think they're intertwined at a deeper level than (nominally) elected politicians. The US has its own permanent bureaucracy, with its own set of entrenched interests, which for now Big Tech seems to be serving rather well, no doubt in part because it owes its origins to some of those bureaucracies. The government has all the legislative power in the world to put a break on what these companies are doing in regards to censorship. It's even better in a sense than outright government censorship, because it is conducted through a third party. While I don't doubt that some billionaires have a lot of sway in the US, the Big Tech guys strike me more as useful lapdogs that are rewarded for their 'service' than those pulling the strings.
Oh I agree but I think the government and big tech are both lapdogs to various corrupt Interests and lobbying groups.
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TCA2b
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#26
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(Original post by Starship Trooper)
Oh I agree but I think the government and big tech are both lapdogs to various corrupt Interests and lobbying groups.
Agreed, I am leaning towards such a conclusion. I've just seen several analyses which put them at the top of the hierarchy, but I don't think they are. They're as powerful as they are useful.
Last edited by TCA2b; 1 week ago
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Tempest II
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#27
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The Russian economy since 2014, and especially since COVID, has been in stagnant at best and in recession at worst.
It's true that the post Soviet economy in the 1990s, up until 1998 at least, was in utter shambles. The 1998 ruble devaluation crisis actually saved the Russian economy due to the fact that global oil and other energy prices began to increase in 1999 and continued to do so until 2008.
In contrast, 2009 saw the Russian economy contract almost 8%. It hasn't really recovered since, partly due to economic sanctions after the intervention in Crimea in 2014. It also didn't help that Putin, after 2014, started to really ramp up defence spending, peaking at 5.5% GDP in 2016.

It's certainly laughable to think that Putin isn't corrupt. The only corruption he's clamped down on is the kind that doesn't benefit him and his cronies. It's reported that his wealth, before COVID at least, was in excess of $60 billion; possibly it's as high as $200 billion. At the very least, he appears to have a $500 million yacht and a $1.3 billion Black Sea palace.

The current state of the current economy has led to Putin's lowest approval ratings since 2013; while they're higher than your average world leader, the cult of authoritarianism remains strong in Russia. However, one does have to wonder if the state of the economy and the protests in support of the opposition leader Alexei Navalny are at least partly responsible for Russia's increased posturing regarding Eastern Ukraine.

https://www.themoscowtimes.com/2019/...numbers-a66924

https://www.investopedia.com/article...viet-union.asp

https://www.ft.com/content/63ea4134-...0-0fde43948d86
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Napp
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#28
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(Original post by Rakas21)
No true but I was pointing out that most of us don't really care about Ukraine being weaker in the way we don't care about Catalonia leaving, arguably a weaker Spain and Ukraine is better for everybody but Ukraine and Spain. The problem here is that they would fall into Russia's orbit so regardless of Russia's motives it should not be tolerated or encouraged.
Might one ask why not? What gives us the right to a sphere of influence (or in particular America in this example) and not Russia, especially given by every metric Russia has a *more* legitimate claim to one given its history. That isnt to say it is entitled to one of course by relatively speaking. Equally, Ukraine has traditionally always been in Russias orbit, as ou put it, to say we should yank it out is akin to saying Russia has every right to quasi annex Canada...
In terms of hypocracy again that's not something I care for. As much as I don't like the EU as an institution I view it's member states as western nations that must be captured at the very least in economic terms. Like it or not but while Russia is not the USSR it is sorrounded by smaller, weaker nations. By not being one of us that means that we are in conflict at least in our aims and more pertanantly our rival customs unions (and in the EU's case it's encouragement of democracy). I hold no bones about the fact that I have picked my side and am quite happy for the US/EU to do what is nessesary to expand our sphere.
I am mildly curious as to why you advocate the double standard here?
Probably more it's structure and policial culture. If it was ever close to free and fair democracy, that dream died in 2012 when Putin had opponents arrested. It's credentials as a market economy are sketchy at best given how corrupt it is, full of oligarchs and controlled by corporations. It is a member of OPEC+ (sadly we don't have another large shale producer since the EU won't let Poland go hard and Argentina seems to not know what to do with it). It is in opposition to most of our geo-strategic aims.
I would point out that happens in the west as well, to say we are bastions of virtue and only Russia gets p to these tricks is simply untrue. That isnt to defend it but it does mean we cant really try and pretend to exist on a higher moral plain.
As to oligarchs and corruption, the US (and plenty of other western countries) are thoroghly corrupt, if in different ways, to Russia.
On the last comment though i would contend that is largely our fault. Russia made every effort to join the west (if with some obviously unacceptable caveats like having an equal say with the US) but the fact remains we were the ones who turned them into an 'enemy' and have helped to create a Russia China axis - something Russia decidedly did not want before the choice was foisted upon them.
We hear Westminster and Washington whine about Russia and China yet they ignore it is their fault for treating Russia as a non-entity and ignoring their legitimate grievances (and the illegitimate). Case in pont, we could hae Russia, one of the big 3 militaries in the world, on side - we pushed them to China though. We will now have that problem to deal with for years to come.
Sure it's a nice country in art and history and the like but so is China and Syria. It means at best we might like a holiday.
Indeed, its also a powerful country that, whether we like it or not, need to consider when actng on the global stage these days. Then again, its a moot point - theyre more powerful than Europe and without America hawks like Britain have helped to create a serious problem for themselves for no reason other than petty nationalism (look at Poland). A a si9de note tough, i did always find Polands complaining as bit ironic considering they've historically done exactly what the Russians got up to during the USSR years - albeit a bit before then. It seems their reading opf history is somewhat selective.
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Napp
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#29
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(Original post by Starship Trooper)
Napp

Do you really think Putin would have been able to accomplish what he has under a "liberal democracy" considering the many corrupt and hostile forces against him?
Nope. But i less blame him than Yeltsin and our enabling of his grotesque corruption (and how we interfered in their elections :rolleyes: ). He was an effective leader in his first couple of terms and unarguably (openly the die hard russia/putinphobes dispute tis) did wonders for Russia. It is a shame what he jhas become now thogh in that it is now quite openly a kleptocracy. He brought the original oligarchs to heal but has now enabled a new breed of them, ironically he is now held hostage by them, hence why he wont retire (aside from liking power) he cant reliably retire without fear of being hurled in jail.
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Napp
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(Original post by Tempest II)
The Russian economy since 2014, and especially since COVID, has been in stagnant at best and in recession at worst.
It's true that the post Soviet economy in the 1990s, up until 1998 at least, was in utter shambles. The 1998 ruble devaluation crisis actually saved the Russian economy due to the fact that global oil and other energy prices began to increase in 1999 and continued to do so until 2008.
In contrast, 2009 saw the Russian economy contract almost 8%. It hasn't really recovered since, partly due to economic sanctions after the intervention in Crimea in 2014. It also didn't help that Putin, after 2014, started to really ramp up defence spending, peaking at 5.5% GDP in 2016.
Slighty untrue, Russia recovered faster than most other countries from our 2008 crash through rather good macroeconomic policies - corruption aside, his tecnicrats are generally rather good.

The current state of the current economy has led to Putin's lowest approval ratings since 2013; while they're higher than your average world leader, the cult of authoritarianism remains strong in Russia. However, one does have to wonder if the state of the economy and the protests in support of the opposition leader Alexei Navalny are at least partly responsible for Russia's increased posturing regarding Eastern Ukraine.
Thats more to do with pension reforms than the economy in of itself to be honest.
I am curious though, why do you call Navalny the 'opposition leader' when he has no real support outside of the western cities? It would be akin to calling Farage the opposition leader when using the same metrics. Certainly an interesting fellow but in terms of actually leading an 'opposition, such as there is one, a bit of a misnomer. Ironically though, i do like how people in the west think he'd be more amenable to bending the knee than Putin.. he doesnt like corruption but he is still a nationalist, like most politicians there.
As to Ukraine, its unlikely, theyve tried to keep that rather secret all things considered, little coverage of it, secret funerals and the like. As far as the trite explanation for conflicts goes in that they distract public opinion, this one doesnt seem to really make the grade. In ones view it is a much more simple explanation theyre keeping the conflict on a low simmer for future negotiations and to ensure NATO keeps its nose out. The Ukrainians, however, are preparing for a new offensive, ergo the Russians need to respond to keep the balance. More equation balancing than trying to achieve any 'victory'.
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Starship Trooper
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#31
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(Original post by Napp)
Nope. But i less blame him than Yeltsin and our enabling of his grotesque corruption (and how we interfered in their elections :rolleyes: ). He was an effective leader in his first couple of terms and unarguably (openly the die hard russia/putinphobes dispute tis) did wonders for Russia. It is a shame what he jhas become now thogh in that it is now quite openly a kleptocracy. He brought the original oligarchs to heal but has now enabled a new breed of them, ironically he is now held hostage by them, hence why he wont retire (aside from liking power) he cant reliably retire without fear of being hurled in jail.
I think people are generally not overly bothered by some degree of corruption in their leaders so long as their leaders are competent and also improve things for the country. How often have corruption allegations really hurt the Tories after all?

Russia's leaders may be more corrupt than in the west (*cough* Hunter Biden) but they are largely better than their western components - eg you may think Putin is a monster but you can't deny he is on another level to the likes of Boris, Macron et Al.

Given the choice between a completely corrupt but effective government that improve things for the country and a totally honest and by the books government that is useless I know which one people will vote for.

Lastly as you have hinted at- nationalism and Authoritarianism is in keeping with the Russian character and what their people want. Expecting or wanting them to turn into Sweden or something seems a bit strange.
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L i b
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#32
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(Original post by Rakas21)
To answer your question Napp I don't think the objection is to weakening Ukraine via seperation but to strengthening Russia. They are not one of us.
I don't much like folk invading and annexing bits of other countries. And particularly when it's in Europe. The international order rather depends on this, which is why we don't get together with the Germans and decide to kick the Russians out of Kaliningrad.
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L i b
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#33
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(Original post by Starship Trooper)
I think people are generally not overly bothered by some degree of corruption in their leaders so long as their leaders are competent and also improve things for the country. How often have corruption allegations really hurt the Tories after all?
People might actually care if the lunatic fringe of politics didn't make them so often.

If there was a genuine incident of notable government corruption, it'd be completely squeezed out by Twitter idiots going around claiming that we live in a dictatorship because some PPE provider employed someone who was once married to the second-cousin of someone who donated £10 to the Tory Party in 1992.
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Starship Trooper
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#34
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(Original post by L i b)
People might actually care if the lunatic fringe of politics didn't make them so often.

If there was a genuine incident of notable government corruption, it'd be completely squeezed out by Twitter idiots going around claiming that we live in a dictatorship because some PPE provider employed someone who was once married to the second-cousin of someone who donated £10 to the Tory Party in 1992.
True

(Original post by L i b)
I don't much like folk invading and annexing bits of other countries. And particularly when it's in Europe.

The international order rather depends on this, which is why we don't get together with the Germans and decide to kick the Russians out of Kaliningrad.
Russia doesn't like it when Western leaders organise a covert coup against a next door neighbour, try and incorporate it into a anti Russia military alliance.

Imagine the outrage if Russia organised a coup in Dublin and got it to join a new Warsaw pact.

I doubt "protecting the international order" is remotely the main reason the UK and Germany don't do that.
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Stalin
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#35
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(Original post by L i b)
I don't much like folk invading and annexing bits of other countries. And particularly when it's in Europe. The international order rather depends on this, which is why we don't get together with the Germans and decide to kick the Russians out of Kaliningrad.
No annexation - Crimea voted to secede from Ukraine and join Russia.

Had to laugh at the idea of Germany and the UK attempting to kick the Russians out of Kaliningrad...
Last edited by Stalin; 1 week ago
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Napp
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#36
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(Original post by L i b)
I don't much like folk invading and annexing bits of other countries. And particularly when it's in Europe. The international order rather depends on this, which is why we don't get together with the Germans and decide to kick the Russians out of Kaliningrad.
In fairness i feel youre over simplifying the situation a bit here;
1) As has been noted, Crimea was a somewhat unique case in it being Russia in the first place and gifted to Ukraine as a party political stunt back in the day
2) Whether we like it or not, the Russians did have a genuine fear of Ukraine going towards NATO and them losing their strategically essential base there, its hard to fault a country ensuring its protection when we would do the same (in fact, if you watch the news we are doing the same with Diego Garcia, in manner of speaking).
3) The inhabitants, despite questionable elections, still voted overwhelmingly in the plebiscite to return to Russia - something the west conveniently ignores.

Lastly, and most importantly, no one in the western capitals of power can say with a straight face they give a toss about this. They neither care about Ukraine nor Crimea, this is little more than an excuse to carry on the russophobic policies. Granted its a good excuse but nevertheless.

Just to our international order comment though, might i ask how you can say that honestly? Given us and the Americans regularly flaunt this so called accepted order? Say of it what you will but the Kremlin is correct in their saying that one set of rules applies to the west and another to others. Its very hard to take western complaints seriously when they regularly violate the key tenets of this from invading sovereign states, annexing territory, arming terrorists, ignoring international law, international rulings and so on so forth. Long story short, this is hypocrisy of the rankest order.
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GeorgeFloydPron
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#37
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Who cares Democracy is ****

How many illegal wars has Britain and US to name two been in under guise of Democracy? LMAO
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victorzg
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#38
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(Original post by Starship Trooper)
Putin is an absolute boss who loves his people, loves his country and loves God. Biden, Boris, Macron, Merkel et al- they aren't fit to wash the feet of this great man.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=h538y7jeRW4&t=207s
what leader loves his people when that country has domestic abuse decriminalized

(Original post by The RAR)
God bless Putin, the man is a man of his people and his country
that man has domestic abuse decriminalized in his country
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Starship Trooper
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#39
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(Original post by victorzg)
what leader loves his people when that country has domestic abuse decriminalized
So are you saying it's legal for a husband to beat the hell out of their wife and suffer no consequence for it?
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The RAR
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#40
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(Original post by victorzg)
what leader loves his people when that country has domestic abuse decriminalized


that man has domestic abuse decriminalized in his country
It is a well known fact the Russian government intervenes in people's private lives as little as possible. I rather would have more individual liberty and less political liberty than have more political liberty and less individual liberty.
Last edited by The RAR; 5 days ago
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