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The Vladimir Putin thread
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Mercenary Offline
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Post: #126
RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
Anyone who thinks Putin is bad for Russia has no fucking clue how bad things were there between 1985 and 2000.

No food, money totally worthless, rampant unemployment, crumbling infrastructure, weak & broken military, high level of debt to the outside world, zero birth rate, and (((oligarchs))) that were bleeding the country dry.

The amount of improvement that Putin has achieved for Russia in just 17 years is astounding.

Russia today has full supermarkets, a currency that is stable and accepted abroad, low levels of unemployment, healthy looking people, a rising birth rate, high speed trains, a powerful military kicking ass abroad, and a land free of (((oligarchs.)))

Putin repaid ALL of Russia'a foreign debt...even from the old USSR days. It's now ZERO.
Added to all this he managed to expand Russia's territory by taking Crimea in Ukraine, without firing a single shot.

Which world leader in the last 20 years has been able to turn such a enormous broken country around in such a short time ? (Only the Chinese can claim to have achieved something similiar....and they were not in such a bad state as Russia was 18 years ago.)
(This post was last modified: 03-19-2018 02:56 PM by Mercenary.)
03-19-2018 02:45 PM
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Post: #127
RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
(03-19-2018 02:19 PM)MOVSM Wrote:  
(03-19-2018 02:05 PM)Rocha Wrote:  Has Russia ever had a better leader than Putin?

Never.

Peter I? Catherine II? Alexander II?

Peasants where slaves and serfs... So yeah, Putin is much better to his people than those you mention.

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(This post was last modified: 03-19-2018 03:09 PM by Rocha.)
03-19-2018 02:54 PM
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Mage Offline
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Post: #128
RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
(03-19-2018 02:54 PM)Rocha Wrote:  
(03-19-2018 02:19 PM)MOVSM Wrote:  
(03-19-2018 02:05 PM)Rocha Wrote:  Has Russia ever had a better leader than Putin?

Never.

Peter I? Catherine II? Alexander II?

Peasants where slaves and serfs... So yeah, Putin is much better to his people than those you mention.

Peter I - a butcher who culled many peasants in scorched earth tactics and destroyed much of the unique Slavic culture to accept western values. Killed many nobles also who would not be willing to accept the new order. Tried hard to fit in with the "cool kids" of that age - the other Europeans by accepting their (for that time) modern and liberal customs. Spent huge amounts in building Russian trade ships and trying to make sea colonies witch went nowhere, but was trendy with Europeans. Considered an impostor (after his return from tutelage in Europe) and traitor by many contemporary Russians.

Catherine II - as a typical female ruler was a despot actually a puppet for her lovers particularly Gregory Potemkin and others who all bloody fought and back stabbed each other to get her favor. A cruel and unpredictable woman who made many decisions on a whim. Rumored to be a size queen with enormous sexual appetite and fucking horses to satisfy her appetites.

Alexander II - perhaps the only truly good one on the list, he liberated the serfs and also fought Muslims (Otomans) to liberate Bulgaria.

So actually the list of "all around good" Russian leaders is thin. It's really impossible to rule a country that big and try to be good to everyone. Almost all their rulers are praised by some, damned by others.

It's impossible to apply laws of common morality when speaking about monarchs. Look at Rome for example. There were clearly bad emperors like Caligula, but then are some who would be praised by so many people today like Marcus Aurelius the enlightened philosopher Emperor, but he was still a villain for the German tribes he conquered. We all understand this duality when we look at Romans who were us in a certain sense, bet we condemn it when we look at monarchs of other cultures and expect nothing but absolutely pristine moral behavior from their rulers which is impossible.
(This post was last modified: 03-19-2018 03:39 PM by Mage.)
03-19-2018 03:28 PM
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Post: #129
RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
(03-19-2018 01:11 PM)Mage Wrote:  Even absent any objective reasoning it is preference from someone from your own ethnic group.

But I think there is plenty of objective reasons too, at least the money stays in your country and as I said before you can get benefits yourself the closer you are to the center of the money flow. No matter how greedy a dictator you are - you must share some wealth with those supporting the pillars of your might. It's obviously better if the Tsar lives in your country and your city and you can get contracts to build his villa, get to know some guy from his stuff by having a drink with him or from going to the same church as him.

The whole corruption scheme is actually designed to eventually take the wealth somewhere else. In the longterm, all oligarchs and aspiring gangsters try to invest their funds outside of Russia to avoid being the next Khodorkovsky. The minute you piss off the wrong person things can go south pretty quickly and Russia is not exactly a heaven of judicial independence and rule of law.

What you just described there is a close reflection of what many Russians see as the best way towards a comfortable life: befriend the right person, exploit any connections you might have and essentially become part of the problem. This often demoralizes honest and talented Russians and many end up leaving the country and achieving success in the West.

(03-19-2018 02:45 PM)Mercenary Wrote:  Anyone who thinks Putin is bad for Russia has no fucking clue how bad things were there between 1985 and 2000.

No food, money totally worthless, rampant unemployment, crumbling infrastructure, weak & broken military, high level of debt to the outside world, zero birth rate, and (((oligarchs))) that were bleeding the country dry.

No doubt that Putin did a great job initially but it's been 2 decades since the worst Yeltsin years and the (((oligarchs))) you mention are either still in power or have been replaced by other men that continue to drain the country.

It's the western support for Putin that I don't totally agree with, but overall I understand why many Russians are ok with him.

I remember a conversation with one of my Russian teachers.

She mentioned how lucky she felt that people now had the right to travel abroad, you could live a comfortable life, there's plenty of cheap consumer goods and so on.

She said her sister from Siberia had made a lot of money with her own interior design company and they now lived in a two-story house in their home town and both her and her husband each drive a mercedes. For them all of this would have seemed unimaginable growing up and while she doesn't know whether it's thanks to Putin or not, she'd be happy if things stayed more or less the same.

The vast majority of Russians are not particularly interested in having a fair democracy and are mostly very cynical towards their political class. They are content as long as they can more or less live a comfortable life (and they have pretty modest standards) and unsurprisingly, they generally see political changes as a negative thing.

At the same time, I think those who are blind Putin supporters are actually a small minority. I've read pro-kremlin western journalists praise Putin as having the utmost support of his people but I largely think Russians are just voting for him out of fear of things getting worse if a political change takes place.

It reminds me of a phrase I've heard Russians say a few times. With a grin on their face and about to finish their drink, they'll say:

"Россия - самая стабильная страна в мире, потому что в России всегда все хуёво))"

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(This post was last modified: 03-19-2018 03:51 PM by Gopnik.)
03-19-2018 03:34 PM
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Post: #130
RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
(03-19-2018 03:34 PM)Gopnik Wrote:  Overall, I understand why many Russians support Putin, it's the western support I don't fully get.

He is unashamedly masculine, knows the value in traditional gender roles, knows how homosexuality and other sexual deviances eventually totally destroy strong families and birthrates, knows the propaganda for feminism and/or tolerance is a never ending black hole that brings nothing good to healthy society, can see through the true hidden motives behind the NGOs and all the leftist bullshit charities, realises the white race is under threat in the west and is working to prevent that happening in Russia, does not take orders from the (((globalist))) cabal...


The list goes on and on.
What more do you need ?
03-19-2018 03:57 PM
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Post: #131
RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
(03-19-2018 03:34 PM)Gopnik Wrote:  What you just described there is a close reflection of what many Russians see as the best way towards a comfortable life: befriend the right person, exploit any connections you might have and essentially become part of the problem. This often demoralizes honest and talented Russians and many end up leaving the country and achieving success in the West.


I sometimes wonder if it is not a more righteous system by natural law. Is it not right to support your family members and your friends? is it not right to build friendships and build connections? Is a system where you you are to treat a foreign immigrant and your friend or a family member the same right? Is it not what we as red pill men preach and practice - to unite with a fellow men against foreign opportunists and to? Is the de-personalized sterile anti-family system where your banker can help you more then your brother right? Should your boss have more saying in your life then your Godfather? These are questions I sometimes ponder about. Maybe we are so sure our morals are right, but maybe we have became so domesticated and so alienated to natural laws so much that the natural laws of power sound immoral to us?

(03-19-2018 03:34 PM)Gopnik Wrote:  No doubt that Putin did a great job initially but it's been 2 decades since the worst Yeltsin years and the (((oligarchs))) you mention are either still in power or have been replaced by other men that continue to drain the country.

Overall, I understand why many Russians support Putin, it's the western support I don't fully get.

I remember a conversation with one of my Russian teachers.

She mentioned how lucky she felt that people now had the right to travel abroad, you could live a comfortable life, there's plenty of cheap consumer goods and so on.

She said her sister from Siberia had made a lot of money with her own interior design company and they now lived in a two-story house in their home town and both her and her husband each drive a mercedes. For them all of this would have seemed unimaginable growing up and while she doesn't know whether it's thanks to Putin or not, she'd be happy if things stayed more or less the same.

The vast majority of Russians are not particularly interested in having a fair democracy and are mostly very cynical towards their political class. They are content as long as they can more or less live a comfortable life (and they have pretty modest standards) and unsurprisingly, they generally see political changes as a negative thing.

At the same time, I think those who are blind Putin supporters are actually a small minority. I've read pro-kremlin western journalists praise Putin as having the utmost support of his people but I largely think Russians are just voting for him out of fear of things getting worse if a political change takes place.

It reminds me of a russian phrase I've heard a few times:

"Россия - самая стабильная страна в мире, потому что в России всегда все хуёво))"

Well you said it yourself that standard of life in Russia has increased. Yes Russia will always be drained by the rich because the rich people can buy Mercedes and Iphone and travel and get education and buy property outside - all these things leave money outside of Russia, but if it were not so the only alternative is Communism and total isolation, so banning rich people would be repeating the communist mistake. The drain is inevitable, but at least it is more under control now. For the drain to stop Russia would have to start producing luxus cars, phones and computers but it won't happen and it is not in the power of a president to make it happen. It is an inevitable consequence of being a resource rich country - all the entrepreneurship spirit is flowing along the coasts of least resistance - trading with natural resources. No political person can change that. Maybe a great genius private figure like a Russian Edison or Russian Henry Ford or Russian Bill Gates could do that but he is also more likely to be bought over by USA before that happens.
What the president can do is to observe a fragile balance of people's freedoms and rights to spend money outside and interests of the country to keep resources within and sell for high price only. Putin seems to be doing a good job in this regard.

Also Russians have great sense of humor and can be ironical about themselves and love their country at the same time. It's a bit different from Americans who either believe the extreme that Constitution is as Holy as Bible or the extreme that USA is responsible for slavery all around the world and must die. So when Russians laugh about themselves they don't really hate their country they love it.

What I really like about Putin is that under him you can make jokes about him so he is much more humane then any previous leader and is not paranoid about his own people as a 99% of dictators are, those with truly dirty consciousness, who could tolerate nothing but praises in their regard.

Look at Putin laughing about people joking about him and his politics:




Rhamzan Khadirov - the Chechen leader is also made fun about.




Why Putin is not on Facebook - because ha has FSBook (KGBook):




More jokes, including Putin speaking with Trump on phone:


(This post was last modified: 03-19-2018 04:44 PM by Mage.)
03-19-2018 04:23 PM
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Post: #132
RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
(03-19-2018 03:57 PM)Mercenary Wrote:  
(03-19-2018 03:34 PM)Gopnik Wrote:  Overall, I understand why many Russians support Putin, it's the western support I don't fully get.

He is unashamedly masculine, knows the value in traditional gender roles, knows how homosexuality and other sexual deviances eventually totally destroy strong families and birthrates, knows the propaganda for feminism and/or tolerance is a never ending black hole that brings nothing good to healthy society, can see through the true hidden motives behind the NGOs and all the leftist bullshit charities, realises the white race is under threat in the west and is working to prevent that happening in Russia, does not take orders from the (((globalist))) cabal...


The list goes on and on.
What more do you need ?

The first few things you describe are true, but put in the kremlin any average Russian guy and he'll be just as red pill as he is. Again, this is just the case of the West being so screwed up that any president without an up-talk and feminine mannerisms basically comes accross as the next Clint Eastwood.

What you mention about Putin being a defender of the white race is simply cheap talk from his part and it makes me doubt whether you've ever been to Russia or at least Moscow. It's not like London yet but the presence of muslim migrants from Central Asia is very obvious and Putin doesn't have the slightest interest in changing this.

@mage he is extremely charismatic and well-spoken, no doubt of that. However, if you take a rational stance instead of focusing on his carefully orchestrated PR image, you'll see that his regime is using the government to extract all of the country's wealth, while distracting people with funny memes and clever propaganda stunts.

Putin is like the hot tradthot that ultimately has her own agenda and uses an ideology for her own benefit.

(03-19-2018 04:23 PM)Mage Wrote:  I sometimes wonder if it is not a more righteous system by natural law. Is it not right to support your family members and your friends? is it not right to build friendships and build connections? Is a system where you you are to treat a foreign immigrant and your friend or a family member the same right? Is it not what we as red pill men preach and practice - to unite with a fellow men against foreign opportunists and to? Is the de-personalized sterile anti-family system where your banker can help you more then your brother right? Should your boss have more saying in your life then your Godfather? These are questions I sometimes ponder about. Maybe we are so sure our morals are right, but maybe we have became so domesticated and so alienated to natural laws so much that the natural laws of power sound immoral to us?

If anything it just fosters fake relationships based on economic interests and opportunism. I imagine Vitalik Buterin growing up in Russia instead of Canada and working his ass off brown nosing his way up Gazprom instead of founding ethereum. It's the opposite of a meritocratic and entrepreneurial spirit and it doesn't drive society forward.

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(This post was last modified: 03-19-2018 05:56 PM by Gopnik.)
03-19-2018 05:02 PM
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Post: #133
RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
(03-19-2018 03:34 PM)Gopnik Wrote:  I remember a conversation with one of my Russian teachers.

She mentioned how lucky she felt that people now had the right to travel abroad, you could live a comfortable life, there's plenty of cheap consumer goods and so on.

She said her sister from Siberia had made a lot of money with her own interior design company and they now lived in a two-story house in their home town and both her and her husband each drive a mercedes. For them all of this would have seemed unimaginable growing up
......................

It reminds me of a phrase I've heard Russians say a few times. With a grin on their face and about to finish their drink, they'll say:

"Россия - самая стабильная страна в мире, потому что в России всегда все хуёво))"

What you said above about the general improvement of living conditions in Russia, seems to contradict the popular line that you are quoting below - which as you know means, "Russia, the most stable country in the world, because in Russia all is (все?всё?) always (consistently) fucked up".

In any case, you have a point when hinting at the fact that, out of ten male Russians picked up in the streets of Moscow, 8 would be as red-pill (and patriotic) as V. Putin (I might add, out of ten female Russians picked up in the streets of any large Russian city, 9 would be as red-pill as V. Putin). But in any case, being red-pill in itself is not enough to (efficiently) rule a huge country. It's just a start, a required feature, and many other qualities are needed, of course. For example, an unrelenting will to win, outsmart and overcome adversaries, and this is not shared by 8 or 9 people out of ten.
(This post was last modified: 03-19-2018 06:22 PM by Going strong.)
03-19-2018 06:16 PM
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Post: #134
RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
(03-19-2018 05:02 PM)Gopnik Wrote:  The first few things you describe are true, but put in the kremlin any average Russian guy and he'll be just as red pill as he is. Again, this is just the case of the West being so screwed up that any president without an up-talk and feminine mannerisms basically comes accross as the next Clint Eastwood.

They won't be for long if a western puppet is in charge, that's the problem. As soon as Soros NGOs are allowed in, media starts being taken over, academia is subverted, political parties start joining international coalition(ei international socialist, populist parties of europe), foreigners start sponsoring ethnic parties to the point where it will be impossible for a russian party to form a government without a "coalition", and you will start seeing western problems there. Russians are not inherently immune.
(This post was last modified: 03-19-2018 06:53 PM by 8ball.)
03-19-2018 06:53 PM
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Post: #135
RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
(03-19-2018 02:45 PM)Mercenary Wrote:  Russia today has full supermarkets, a currency that is stable and accepted abroad, low levels of unemployment, healthy looking people, a rising birth rate, high speed trains, a powerful military kicking ass abroad, and a land free of (((oligarchs.)))

This is so delusional, it hints that you've never actually been there.

Their currency is unstable - millions lost half their savings when the ruble crashed in 2014 and the rate still hovers at about 60 rub/$ when it was almost half of that 3 years ago. Ask regular Russians - they often keep part of their savings in euros or dollars.

Just because there's no obesity epidemic like in the US does not mean Russians are healthy. Far from this, life expectancy there is significantly lower than in Europe.

Russia's birthrate is barely above the replacement rate and it's not ethnic Russian women that are having babies (one or two kids is the norm). Much like in France or Sweden, it's muslim minorities that greately increase the national average, the only difference being that most of them are native to Russia since the times of the empire.

I travelled from St. Petersburg to Moscow on the high speed Sapsan train and it was half empty. Most Russians cannot afford to pay 150$ for a return trip like this.

(03-19-2018 02:45 PM)Mercenary Wrote:  a land free of (((oligarchs.)))

My favourite. Russia is oligarch paradise and their ellite is so corrupt and violent, it makes Killary Clinton look like Mother Theresa tard

This irrational love for Putin comes not out of logical facts but rather an inferiority complex from those that are stuck in the West and its pussified, self-hating establishment.

Westerners that actually have skin in the game and have spent decades doing business in Russia end up disenchanted with the whole thing.

Take Jamison Firestone, an American attorney that had to flee Russia after the government thugs killed one of his lawyers for investigating a massive tax fraud scheme. Tired of westerners looking the other way, his actions together with partner Bill Browder led to the Magnitsky act being passed in the US (backed by republicans and democrats) that now limits corrupt Russian officials form owning property in the states.

(03-19-2018 06:53 PM)8ball Wrote:  They won't be for long if a western puppet is in charge, that's the problem. As soon as Soros NGOs are allowed in, media starts being taken over, academia is subverted, political parties start joining international coalition(ei international socialist, populist parties of europe), foreigners start sponsoring ethnic parties to the point where it will be impossible for a russian party to form a government without a "coalition", and you will start seeing western problems there. Russians are not inherently immune.

Fair enough. It's a good thing that Putin banned Soros' NGOs. I belive Viktor Orban did the same, but last time I checked Hungary is not a corrupt shithole where rule of law is meaningless and honest people get killed.

@Going strong I'm not contradicting myself, I'm just trying to paint an accurate picture of the country's reality. Things have definitely improved in the past few decades but Russia still has a lot of catching up to do with the 1st world.

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(This post was last modified: 03-20-2018 11:27 AM by Gopnik.)
03-20-2018 11:16 AM
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Post: #136
RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
Putin is also quite likely a criminal and an oligarch, having replaced the Rothschild pro-Western oligarchs under Yeltsin with his own cronies after he took over, it is just that his interests happen to coincide currently with many Russian national interests so it makes him look patriotic. That is probably why he keeps people like Medvedev and the rest around in spite of them being despised and clearly incompetent and corrupt.

That being said, I don't see any better alternatives to him at the moment.
03-20-2018 12:01 PM
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Post: #137
RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
(03-20-2018 11:16 AM)Gopnik Wrote:  
(03-19-2018 02:45 PM)Mercenary Wrote:  Russia today has full supermarkets, a currency that is stable and accepted abroad, low levels of unemployment, healthy looking people, a rising birth rate, high speed trains, a powerful military kicking ass abroad, and a land free of (((oligarchs.)))

This is so delusional, it hints that you've never actually been there.


I've been to Russia twice.
My experiences do not match yours.
03-20-2018 12:14 PM
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RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
(03-20-2018 11:16 AM)Gopnik Wrote:  Take Jamison Firestone, an American attorney that had to flee Russia after the government thugs killed one of his lawyers for investigating a massive tax fraud scheme. Tired of westerners looking the other way, his actions together with partner Bill Browder led to the Magnitsky act being passed in the US (backed by republicans and democrats) that now limits corrupt Russian officials form owning property in the states.


You picked some quite obscure and controversial people out of nowhere.
Googling those 2 names brings up a lot of suspicious past actions (just 1 example here) and a dubious and suspicious family history, and I'm not surprised they fled Russia.

Care to explain why you name dropped these 2 people ?
(This post was last modified: 03-20-2018 12:36 PM by Mercenary.)
03-20-2018 12:31 PM
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Post: #139
RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
(03-20-2018 12:31 PM)Mercenary Wrote:  
(03-20-2018 11:16 AM)Gopnik Wrote:  Take Jamison Firestone, an American attorney that had to flee Russia after the government thugs killed one of his lawyers for investigating a massive tax fraud scheme. Tired of westerners looking the other way, his actions together with partner Bill Browder led to the Magnitsky act being passed in the US (backed by republicans and democrats) that now limits corrupt Russian officials form owning property in the states.


You picked some quite obscure and controversial people out of nowhere.
Googling those 2 names brings up a lot of suspicious past actions (just 1 example here) and a dubious and suspicious family history, and I'm not surprised they fled Russia.

Care to explain why you name dropped these 2 people ?

Well, I don't know about Firestone, but I do know about Browder. He basically went to Russia and tried to loot as much as he could carry. Got pissed about taxes in the US, so he gave up his citizenship. Got outsmarted by Putin, and has the courtesy of being kicked out by the border police. Fled to the UK, started crying about the whole affair, mad that the establishment in Russia would fight back against his predatory instincts... Anyway, cried to the US (no longer his country) and got them to pass anti-Russia sanctions.

I guess the point is, Browder thought he was playing the game like the players in Russia, but he was not. He was the one forced out... This is also a guy who never bothered to learn Russian either, because he thought it not worth the time. Check out his book, it would be a cautionary tale of how not to do Russia. Along with Peter Pomerantsev's book-- this two are some of the loudest neo-cons in the anti-russia camp, and with Browder at least, have a tremendous amount of cachet in policy making circles.
03-20-2018 12:58 PM
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RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
(03-19-2018 04:23 PM)Mage Wrote:  Well you said it yourself that standard of life in Russia has increased. Yes Russia will always be drained by the rich because the rich people can buy Mercedes and Iphone and travel and get education and buy property outside - all these things leave money outside of Russia, but if it were not so the only alternative is Communism and total isolation, so banning rich people would be repeating the communist mistake. The drain is inevitable, but at least it is more under control now. For the drain to stop Russia would have to start producing luxus cars, phones and computers but it won't happen and it is not in the power of a president to make it happen. It is an inevitable consequence of being a resource rich country - all the entrepreneurship spirit is flowing along the coasts of least resistance - trading with natural resources. No political person can change that. Maybe a great genius private figure like a Russian Edison or Russian Henry Ford or Russian Bill Gates could do that but he is also more likely to be bought over by USA before that happens.

Incorrect. They could start with instituting the rule of law to protect personal property and investment. The current risk with all capital-intensive businesses is that some government-affiliated thugs will come by and shake you down at best, if not force you to sell out at pennies on the dollar via a veiled threat of a prison sentence on trumped-up charges, after you poured in your life savings and years of backbreaking work.

They could continue by creating a stable legal system that remains fairly consistent from year to year, where the environment isn't constantly changing for firms (such as "let's ban X!" laws, rather than focusing on underlying problems).

From there, perhaps they could even behave in a fashion that doesn't result in trade wars which impact multinational supply chains and established import / export relationships.

Perhaps after that, they might find it in them to encourage foreign direct investment by guaranteeing their property rights.

I'm a dreamer, I know.

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Captainstabbin: "girls get more attractive with your dick in their mouth. It's science."
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(This post was last modified: 03-20-2018 02:46 PM by polar.)
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RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
Browder was the head of Hermitage Capital, one of the first and most successful hedge funds in the Russian market. Their strategy was activist investment - buy up enough shares to get additional information on companies, use lawyers to sue the companies to run in the interests of the shareholders, as opposed to siphoning money out. This is where Firestone Duncan, and their lawyer Magnitsky came in.

Magnitsky discovered a $128m tax fraud that was performed via crude forgeries of documents of one of the companies with a stake by Hermitage. Put differently, money intended to be refunded to the company (and thus benefitting the shareholders) was instead siphoned off into the personal accounts of government crooks. Instead of taking the offer of Firestone to move to London with his entire family, Magnitsky decided to stay and continue fighting against this corruption. This led to his imprisonment on bogus charges that were flipped against him. He died in custody after willful ignorance by prison staff to his deteriorating health.

Browder has since left the Russian market, and has been one of the biggest voices against Russian corruption.

Data Sheet Maps | On Musical Chicks | Rep Point Changes | Au Pairs on a Boat
Captainstabbin: "girls get more attractive with your dick in their mouth. It's science."
Spaniard88: "The "believe anything" crew contributes: "She's probably a good girl, maybe she lost her virginity to someone with AIDS and only had sex once before you met her...give her a chance.""
(This post was last modified: 03-20-2018 02:56 PM by polar.)
03-20-2018 02:55 PM
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Dragan Offline
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RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
(03-20-2018 02:55 PM)polar Wrote:  Browder was the head of Hermitage Capital, one of the first and most successful hedge funds in the Russian market. Their strategy was activist investment - buy up enough shares to get additional information on companies, use lawyers to sue the companies to run in the interests of the shareholders, as opposed to siphoning money out. This is where Firestone Duncan, and their lawyer Magnitsky came in.

Magnitsky discovered a $128m tax fraud that was performed via crude forgeries of documents of one of the companies with a stake by Hermitage. Put differently, money intended to be refunded to the company (and thus benefitting the shareholders) was instead siphoned off into the personal accounts of government crooks. Instead of taking the offer of Firestone to move to London with his entire family, Magnitsky decided to stay and continue fighting against this corruption. This led to his imprisonment on bogus charges that were flipped against him. He died in custody after willful ignorance by prison staff to his deteriorating health.

Browder has since left the Russian market, and has been one of the biggest voices against Russian corruption.

Good answer. But should read "he has since then become one of the biggest voices against Russian corruption." Browder was at best, indifferent, to the corruption during his tenure in Russia.
03-20-2018 03:05 PM
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RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
Ah...Mr Bill Browder, the brave anti-corruption and justice-seeking hero. The dude was one of Putin's biggest fans when he was swimming in cash in Russia and only became "His number 1 Enemy" after he had to get in line.

from 2004 at Washington Post

https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/p...e5fa5cdfd9

Quote:To his fierce and increasingly worried critics, President Vladimir Putin is a grave threat to post-Soviet democracy, a would-be authoritarian intent on building "capitalism with a Stalinist face," as one reformist leader put it.

But investor William F. Browder sees it differently. Never mind the arguments about a creeping coup by Putin's KGB colleagues, the war in Chechnya, the state takeover of television or even the jailing of Russia's richest man. To Browder, Putin is a true reformer, "the one ally" of Western capitalists who have come to Russia to create a new market economy but have found themselves adrift "in a sea of corrupt bullies."

"What's the worst-case scenario?" asked Browder, who has bet $1.3 billion in the investment fund he runs on the success of the Putin presidency. "That I misjudged and absolute power corrupts absolutely. But I just don't think the objective here is Stalinism."

This pointed debate about where Putin is taking the country is reaching a new pitch as Russia prepares to reward him with a second term in an election on March 14 in which none of his opponents has registered more than single digits in the polls. In another twist, Putin on Tuesday fired his cabinet, including the prime minister, Mikhail Kasyanov.

No one has been making the case for Putin more ardently than Browder and others in the small but influential class of Western investors, investment analysts and stockbrokers based in Moscow. They have become the most consistent rosy-eyed optimists about the KGB spy-turned-president -- and they are making money hand over fist in Russia's booming market.

So taken with Putin are they that one of these Western brokers termed the president "Saint Vladimir" in a recent report, while others find ways to tout the latest investment case for Russia no matter what the news. Even the arrest of oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky last October created only temporary jitters. By last week, the stock market had recovered the 20-plus percent it had lost and surged ahead to an all-time high, making it the best-performing market in the world since Putin came to power in late 1999.

Putin's economics minister, German Gref, warned last week that the market was in danger of "overheating" with all the money pouring in at a time when needed economic reforms have still not been made. But that, too, failed to cause a slowdown.

"I'm one of the Putin apologists," said Eric Kraus, the chief strategist of the Sovlink investment firm here who coined the "Saint Vladimir" phrase. "No bones about it," he added in an interview.

Sounding the alarm about Putin have been independent political analysts and academics, newspaper editorial writers and the dwindling ranks of Russian liberals who found themselves voted entirely out of the Russian parliament in December.

But investment types like Browder, the grandson of an American Communist leader whose Hermitage Capital Management is now the largest foreign investment fund in Russia, have started fighting back.

Their challenge has come in the form of e-mails circulated to thousands of subscribers, daily investment reports, interviews with Western media and prominently placed op-eds in other publications, including Browder's recent paean in the Moscow Times, "Making the Case for Putin." Foreign investment, though still modest, has followed -- $29.7 billion last year, a 50 percent leap over 2002 -- as Russia's oil-fueled economy grew for the fifth year in a row.

"I just don't buy this critique of him as a KGB thug who wants power for its own sake," said Al Breach, another Putin fan and chief economist at Brunswick UBS, a leading Western investment bank here. "If someone's after that, then they're not spending their time on the details of electricity reform."

For many longtime Russia hands, the increasingly pointed debate harkens back to the Cold War feuds that split Kremlinologists into camps that remain to this day.

"Once again, people's views on Russia are really polarized and nerves are frayed in ways we haven't seen publicly since Putin came to power," said Andrew Kuchins, director of the Carnegie Moscow Center, whose analysts have been critical of Putin's authoritarian drift. "There's that sort of energy and emotion to the debate about Russia that I haven't seen in a long time."

Kuchins called Browder the "chief cheerleader" for the Russian president and questioned the reliability of opinions being offered by pro-Putin business leaders who are getting rich from the bullish Russian market.

"Putin dazzled them. . . . I hope they're right, but there's just too much evidence that suggests the contrary," Kuchins said. "If you believe consolidation of a real democracy in Russia is a good thing, it's just hard not to be concerned about what's going on."

For his part, Browder said Putin's critics are armchair experts so far removed from reality that they have failed to account for the president's 70-plus percent approval ratings among Russians. Browder, 39, has spent more than a decade betting on the place. A Stanford MBA, he came to Moscow eager to explore his family's Communist past but stayed on to become one of the first investors here in the early 1990s as a trader at Salomon Brothers. He started Hermitage Capital with $25 million in seed money back in 1996, lives in an apartment in Moscow and says he has no plans to ever leave.

Since Putin came to power, Browder has touted him as a reform-minded technocrat, able to accomplish liberal economic reforms, such as a 13 percent flat tax and private land ownership, that his predecessor, Boris Yeltsin, only talked about. Browder always disagreed with those who feared Putin, but that difference of opinion has widened into a seemingly unbreachable gulf in recent months as the Russian government has launched an all-out legal assault on Khodorkovsky and his oil company, Yukos.

And in that fight, Browder said, "I would trust Putin any day of the week."

For Browder and many of the other investment types here, taking Putin's side comes as a response to their disdain for Khodorkovsky and the other so-called oligarchs who amassed fabulous riches in 1990s privatization deals.

Browder, who has publicly clashed with Khodorkovsky and other oligarchs over what he considers illegal efforts to dilute the value of minority shareholders in their companies, argues that Putin is the only political leader in Russia to attempt to halt their abuses. "It's like being in a lawless schoolyard where there's bullies running around and beating up all us little people and then one day a big bully comes along and all the little bullies fall into line," he said. "That's what the state is supposed to be -- the big bully."

Indeed, Browder said, in recent years he has shifted his fund's investment strategy in Russia, concluding that it only makes sense to invest in nationally significant companies like Gazprom, the state-controlled natural gas monopoly, or Unified Energy Systems, the electricity monopoly. That way, he said, if he encounters problems with management of those state firms, "my leverage is the president."

In the end, his faith in Russia's economic progress has come down to a very personal faith in the president. For Browder and many of his colleagues, debates about democracy are beside the point, "a fairy tale," as Breach put it, that isn't going to come true anytime soon.

"We're taught to believe in liberte, egalite, fraternite as principles you absolutely cannot compromise on," Browder said. "In Russia, without proper institutions all of these just create chaos. It means you end up with seven oligarchs in control of 60 percent of the economy. If the state has to have a bit more power right now, that seems to be the price most Russians are willing to pay."

President Vladimir Putin has been lauded by Westerners who are prospering because of the booming market.Mikhail Khodorkovsky, Russia's richest man, appeared by video link during a bail hearing in November. His arrest was seen as part of a Putin campaign against so-called oligarchs.
(This post was last modified: 03-20-2018 03:25 PM by AManLikePutin.)
03-20-2018 03:18 PM
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RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
For the record, I am not convinced that Russia , as we know it today, will still be existing by 2030-2040ish. It only takes one drunk/puppet ruler...Yeltsin nearly gave Kaliningrad to Germany in the 90s
03-20-2018 03:32 PM
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RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
(03-20-2018 03:18 PM)AManLikePutin Wrote:  Ah...Mr Bill Browder, the brave anti-corruption and justice-seeking hero. The dude was one of Putin's biggest fans when he was swimming in cash in Russia and only became "His number 1 Enemy" after he had to get in line.

from 2004 at Washington Post

https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/p...e5fa5cdfd9

Quote:To his fierce and increasingly worried critics, President Vladimir Putin is a grave threat to post-Soviet democracy, a would-be authoritarian intent on building "capitalism with a Stalinist face," as one reformist leader put it.

But investor William F. Browder sees it differently. Never mind the arguments about a creeping coup by Putin's KGB colleagues, the war in Chechnya, the state takeover of television or even the jailing of Russia's richest man. To Browder, Putin is a true reformer, "the one ally" of Western capitalists who have come to Russia to create a new market economy but have found themselves adrift "in a sea of corrupt bullies."

"What's the worst-case scenario?" asked Browder, who has bet $1.3 billion in the investment fund he runs on the success of the Putin presidency. "That I misjudged and absolute power corrupts absolutely. But I just don't think the objective here is Stalinism."

This pointed debate about where Putin is taking the country is reaching a new pitch as Russia prepares to reward him with a second term in an election on March 14 in which none of his opponents has registered more than single digits in the polls. In another twist, Putin on Tuesday fired his cabinet, including the prime minister, Mikhail Kasyanov.

No one has been making the case for Putin more ardently than Browder and others in the small but influential class of Western investors, investment analysts and stockbrokers based in Moscow. They have become the most consistent rosy-eyed optimists about the KGB spy-turned-president -- and they are making money hand over fist in Russia's booming market.

So taken with Putin are they that one of these Western brokers termed the president "Saint Vladimir" in a recent report, while others find ways to tout the latest investment case for Russia no matter what the news. Even the arrest of oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky last October created only temporary jitters. By last week, the stock market had recovered the 20-plus percent it had lost and surged ahead to an all-time high, making it the best-performing market in the world since Putin came to power in late 1999.

Putin's economics minister, German Gref, warned last week that the market was in danger of "overheating" with all the money pouring in at a time when needed economic reforms have still not been made. But that, too, failed to cause a slowdown.

"I'm one of the Putin apologists," said Eric Kraus, the chief strategist of the Sovlink investment firm here who coined the "Saint Vladimir" phrase. "No bones about it," he added in an interview.

Sounding the alarm about Putin have been independent political analysts and academics, newspaper editorial writers and the dwindling ranks of Russian liberals who found themselves voted entirely out of the Russian parliament in December.

But investment types like Browder, the grandson of an American Communist leader whose Hermitage Capital Management is now the largest foreign investment fund in Russia, have started fighting back.

Their challenge has come in the form of e-mails circulated to thousands of subscribers, daily investment reports, interviews with Western media and prominently placed op-eds in other publications, including Browder's recent paean in the Moscow Times, "Making the Case for Putin." Foreign investment, though still modest, has followed -- $29.7 billion last year, a 50 percent leap over 2002 -- as Russia's oil-fueled economy grew for the fifth year in a row.

"I just don't buy this critique of him as a KGB thug who wants power for its own sake," said Al Breach, another Putin fan and chief economist at Brunswick UBS, a leading Western investment bank here. "If someone's after that, then they're not spending their time on the details of electricity reform."

For many longtime Russia hands, the increasingly pointed debate harkens back to the Cold War feuds that split Kremlinologists into camps that remain to this day.

"Once again, people's views on Russia are really polarized and nerves are frayed in ways we haven't seen publicly since Putin came to power," said Andrew Kuchins, director of the Carnegie Moscow Center, whose analysts have been critical of Putin's authoritarian drift. "There's that sort of energy and emotion to the debate about Russia that I haven't seen in a long time."

Kuchins called Browder the "chief cheerleader" for the Russian president and questioned the reliability of opinions being offered by pro-Putin business leaders who are getting rich from the bullish Russian market.

"Putin dazzled them. . . . I hope they're right, but there's just too much evidence that suggests the contrary," Kuchins said. "If you believe consolidation of a real democracy in Russia is a good thing, it's just hard not to be concerned about what's going on."

For his part, Browder said Putin's critics are armchair experts so far removed from reality that they have failed to account for the president's 70-plus percent approval ratings among Russians. Browder, 39, has spent more than a decade betting on the place. A Stanford MBA, he came to Moscow eager to explore his family's Communist past but stayed on to become one of the first investors here in the early 1990s as a trader at Salomon Brothers. He started Hermitage Capital with $25 million in seed money back in 1996, lives in an apartment in Moscow and says he has no plans to ever leave.

Since Putin came to power, Browder has touted him as a reform-minded technocrat, able to accomplish liberal economic reforms, such as a 13 percent flat tax and private land ownership, that his predecessor, Boris Yeltsin, only talked about. Browder always disagreed with those who feared Putin, but that difference of opinion has widened into a seemingly unbreachable gulf in recent months as the Russian government has launched an all-out legal assault on Khodorkovsky and his oil company, Yukos.

And in that fight, Browder said, "I would trust Putin any day of the week."

For Browder and many of the other investment types here, taking Putin's side comes as a response to their disdain for Khodorkovsky and the other so-called oligarchs who amassed fabulous riches in 1990s privatization deals.

Browder, who has publicly clashed with Khodorkovsky and other oligarchs over what he considers illegal efforts to dilute the value of minority shareholders in their companies, argues that Putin is the only political leader in Russia to attempt to halt their abuses. "It's like being in a lawless schoolyard where there's bullies running around and beating up all us little people and then one day a big bully comes along and all the little bullies fall into line," he said. "That's what the state is supposed to be -- the big bully."

Indeed, Browder said, in recent years he has shifted his fund's investment strategy in Russia, concluding that it only makes sense to invest in nationally significant companies like Gazprom, the state-controlled natural gas monopoly, or Unified Energy Systems, the electricity monopoly. That way, he said, if he encounters problems with management of those state firms, "my leverage is the president."

In the end, his faith in Russia's economic progress has come down to a very personal faith in the president. For Browder and many of his colleagues, debates about democracy are beside the point, "a fairy tale," as Breach put it, that isn't going to come true anytime soon.

"We're taught to believe in liberte, egalite, fraternite as principles you absolutely cannot compromise on," Browder said. "In Russia, without proper institutions all of these just create chaos. It means you end up with seven oligarchs in control of 60 percent of the economy. If the state has to have a bit more power right now, that seems to be the price most Russians are willing to pay."

President Vladimir Putin has been lauded by Westerners who are prospering because of the booming market.Mikhail Khodorkovsky, Russia's richest man, appeared by video link during a bail hearing in November. His arrest was seen as part of a Putin campaign against so-called oligarchs.

Exactly... I was too lazy to look up his past statements. Great post.
03-20-2018 03:36 PM
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polar Offline
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RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
(03-20-2018 03:05 PM)Dragan Wrote:  
(03-20-2018 02:55 PM)polar Wrote:  Browder was the head of Hermitage Capital, one of the first and most successful hedge funds in the Russian market. Their strategy was activist investment - buy up enough shares to get additional information on companies, use lawyers to sue the companies to run in the interests of the shareholders, as opposed to siphoning money out. This is where Firestone Duncan, and their lawyer Magnitsky came in.

Magnitsky discovered a $128m tax fraud that was performed via crude forgeries of documents of one of the companies with a stake by Hermitage. Put differently, money intended to be refunded to the company (and thus benefitting the shareholders) was instead siphoned off into the personal accounts of government crooks. Instead of taking the offer of Firestone to move to London with his entire family, Magnitsky decided to stay and continue fighting against this corruption. This led to his imprisonment on bogus charges that were flipped against him. He died in custody after willful ignorance by prison staff to his deteriorating health.

Browder has since left the Russian market, and has been one of the biggest voices against Russian corruption.

Good answer. But should read "he has since then become one of the biggest voices against Russian corruption." Browder was at best, indifferent, to the corruption during his tenure in Russia.

Not quite. The activist investment relied on investing in companies with corrupt management (valued like 90% of the assets at book value were stolen), throwing lawyers at them to improve their governance, forcing the management to steal a bit less, and therefore improving cash flows and valuations. If you get company that was valued like 90% of its assets were stolen to go up to 80%, you just doubled your money. Another day at the office.

He didn't have a say about day-to-day corruption, but focused on fighting white collar crime - and profiting in the process. He didn't care if cops were taking bribes instead of writing traffic tickets.

That being said, I am not calling him a saint.

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Captainstabbin: "girls get more attractive with your dick in their mouth. It's science."
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(This post was last modified: 03-20-2018 04:14 PM by polar.)
03-20-2018 04:06 PM
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RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
Re: Washington post article:

After the 90s when the government was in the back pocket of a handful of oligarchs who bought up most of the USSR's assets at fire sale prices, Putin's strong arm law was a welcome change. The hope was a model not dissimilar to China - strong central government setting the rules for corporations, not the other way around.

Economy was also growing and stabilizing after the 90s, and benefited from rising oil prices. A lot of people escaped the poverty of the 90s during Putin's early years as president. Crime was stomped down by law enforcement, with "protection money or your kneecaps" becoming a thing of the past.

Of course, the model then turned into one man rule married with crony capitalism, with the "in" oligarchs paying extra taxes for Putin's pet projects up front, while collecting huge profits on the back end from all of the contracts falling in their lap. Law enforcement became the new "protection..." those failing to pay risked jail time for frivolous reasons. And at the small / medium business level, those with government connections were able to leverage them to steal companies from their rightful owners.

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Captainstabbin: "girls get more attractive with your dick in their mouth. It's science."
Spaniard88: "The "believe anything" crew contributes: "She's probably a good girl, maybe she lost her virginity to someone with AIDS and only had sex once before you met her...give her a chance.""
(This post was last modified: 03-20-2018 04:20 PM by polar.)
03-20-2018 04:12 PM
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RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
Dupe

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Captainstabbin: "girls get more attractive with your dick in their mouth. It's science."
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(This post was last modified: 03-20-2018 04:22 PM by polar.)
03-20-2018 04:20 PM
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Post: #149
RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
Does anyone know how much Putin spent campaigning? I can only find an old article saying he will spend $7M USD. That translates to 6 cents per voter. Hillary spent $6 per voter.

"I sold all stocks and went all cash months ago, just in case." - Kurt Eichenwald, 8 Nov 2016
World Stocks Have Underperformed The US By The Most Since The Financial Crisis - 1 Sep 2018
03-20-2018 04:48 PM
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RE: The Vladimir Putin thread
1) the public numbers are probably a lie (low ball). IIRC there was a ton of advertising and "get out the vote" to try and pump voting participation rates but those probably didn't get attributed to his campaign.

on the other hand:
2) one man race
3) rubber stamp election

So the spend didn't matter much.

What I want to know are the actual participation rates in the election. They can't be anywhere near the stated rates.

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Captainstabbin: "girls get more attractive with your dick in their mouth. It's science."
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(This post was last modified: 03-20-2018 05:03 PM by polar.)
03-20-2018 05:00 PM
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