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Don't Expect Much from the Helsinki Meeting
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putin-trump-meeting

So I know everyone is in a GET HYPE mood for this, fueled by loony interpretations ranging from THE RESISTANCE’s idea that Trump is going there to receive his annual performance review from DARK LORD OF THE KREMLIN, to Trump having chosen Helsinki specifically for Finland’s symbolic value as having played a role in the collapse of both the Russian Empire and the USSR (yes, I have seen this particular theory trotted out on my Facebook feed) – and everything in between.

Reality is that this is almost certainly going to be a damp squib.

There is talk that Trump is going to make concessions on sanctions and/or the Ukraine in return for Russia pressuring the Iranians out of Syria, which Israel, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE have been advocating for.

Yeah, I don’t think so.

Apart from irrelevant ethical considerations, Russia can’t throw Iran in Syria for the simple reason that it provides much of the Syrian government’s budget (~$10 billion per annum), and a large percentage of its most combat-capable units.

To replace the Iranians there, Russia will have to cough up the money itself, and escalate its military involvement on the ground beyond deniable mercenaries. This would be idiotic and ruinous at the best of times. These are not the best of times. Putin’s net approval rating has just plummeted to close to its all-time nadir in 2011 in the wake of the pensions reform. He most certainly does not want the visual of Russian taxpayer money going to “our Syrian bratushki” at this time.

The critical point is that concessions on either sanctions or the Ukraine are not Trump’s to give.

Recognition of Crimea as Russian is out of the question, given that Congress has overwhelmingly declared it part of Ukraine in the CAATSA law and committed to “never” recognizing the annexation.

Any sanctions removal would also have to go through Congress, which would also make this a firm no-go. Indeed, even with the best will in the world, Trump can hardly even be expected to annul any new, harsher sanctions.

What else is there?

Another concession would be for Russia to cancel Nord Stream 2, giving a boon to American LNG suppliers, who have long wanted to establish a foothold on the European market. Hard to see what Putin or Russia get in return for putting the kibosh on their entire energy strategy.

There was a lot of talk half a year ago of arranging UN peacekeepers for the Donbass. At that time, it was raising hackles amongst Donbass supporters and Russian nationalists, who live in a daily paranoia about Putin betraying the Donbass (“Putinsliv”). But that idea has since faded away.

One suggestion that a pro-Russian Western journalist I recently talked to made was for Putin to acknowledge Russian involvement in the US elections, which would be something for Trump to “take back to” as a victory. Maybe I am not thinking laterally enough in this game of ultra-high dimensional chess, but I fail to see what good that will do. So what is Putin supposed to do after that? Extradite Prigozhin and Co. to face Uncle Sam’s justice? What is the Swamp going to do? Forgive Trump, Putin, and join hands to sing kumbaya in a circle?

Anyway, at the end of the day, there’s two things that ensure the stalemate continues:

  • What Russia is expected to offer is unaffordable high.
  • What the US is credibly capable of committing to in return is extremely cheap.

So expect no more than some platitudes and empty, meaningless commitments in the style of the North Korean agreement, one designed to reflect well on Trump’s statesmanship. It’s the best that can be hoped for at this conjecture.

 
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  1. What’s in it for Putin? I certainly wouldn’t be interested in meeting Trump, given the points you also mentioned, that Trump is basically not in a position to give Putin anything he wants. Unlike Kim, the meeting itself can hardly be sold as a prize in itself, and I don’t think Putin himself even cares much for Trump on a personal level.

    So why did he meet? Sentimental weakness? Nostalgia for the good old days of Reagan-Gorbachev?

    • Replies: @Felix Keverich
    , @notanon
  2. Mitleser says:

    This sunmit is just a waste of time.

    Apart from irrelevant ethical considerations, Russia can’t throw Iran in Syria for the simple reason that it provides much of the Syrian budget (~$10 billion per annum), and a large percentage of its most combat-capable units.

    The latter are not really needed anymore, though.
    Syrian loyalists have now enough manpower to deal with Syrian insurgents without support from pro-Iranian militias.

  3. Mr. Hack says:

    So, why doesn’t Putin cave in on Donbas anyway? I don’t think that Donbas 2 will help him raise his recently falling approval ratings anymore? It could be a win/win for both Trump and Putin – they’ll both be made to look like peacemakers. This war has always been a dark spot for Russia, and it’s clear that it doesn’t want to annex it Crimean style. The eventual warming of relations between Russia and Ukraine has to begin someday, what better time than now?

    BTW, I think that there will be a lot of Ukies demonstrating in Helsinki, just to remind everybody what’s really at stake.

    • Replies: @Felix Keverich
  4. @reiner Tor

    I’m actually inclined to a agree with some of the Western commentary on this subject.

    What’s in it for Putin? Perhaps, he wants some extra legitimacy, that comes from being seen in the company of American president? We know that Putin feels insecure about his rule, so do many of his cronies – and all of them are afflicted by Russian (Eastern European really) inferiority complex. So this meeting could provide a much needed confidence boost for the Russian “elite”. It is a “win” simply to have American president talking to you, and not kicking you in face, if only for a few short hours. If that is the case, the impact of this summit will be primarily therapeutical.

    • Replies: @Mikhail
    , @WHAT
  5. Ludwig says:

    The only “benefit” to both Trump and Putin is to thumb their noses at the Western establishment. Otherwise not only will the summit not provide any tangible gains for Trump or Russia but it will provide Trump and Putin critics (ie the Western establishment) with more ammunition to continue to beat them both with.

    Though both hysterical Trump “resisters” and Russians who don’t understand Trump or US dynamics think that Trump is a great friend of Russia who wants to do good things for Russia’s benefit.

    The reality is more mundane: Trump has a business mentality and believes his job entails selling US products worldwide to benefit the US. He sees himself as CEO of US Inc and everyone else essentially as competitors to his business. He would like to increase revenue through new markets and suppressing competitors in these markets, and cut costs in projects which don’t bring in immediate cash flow.

    Russia is a competitor in Gas and Arms Sales, and Trump will do everything he can to suppress Russian sales here. Meanwhile if Russia wants to spend money on projects like Syria where Trump only sees cost without cash flow, sure go ahead. Left to himself, Trump would also love to have US companies invest in Crimea which he would see as prime real estate. But of course the US Congress won’t allow that. In general, the US Congress and establishment will never allow any projects that can normalize or benefit Putin or Russia even if beneficial to US businesses (which is a reverse of how they normally conduct business).

    So what can Trump realistically offer Russia that will be beneficial to Russia. Nothing.

    Meanwhile what can Russia offer Trump? Especially knowing that Trump can offer nothing more than what’s happening that will not impinge on Russian interests or its cash flow? Nothing.

    In the end Putin’s meets with merkel or macron and other Euro leaders are more consequential (if not earth shattering). Putin domestically probably has more to gain than Trump just to given an appearance of normality. The hysteria in the US against Russia will continue to be amped up with this meeting adding fuel to the fire.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  6. @Mr. Hack

    The eventual warming of relations between Russia and Ukraine has to begin someday, what better time than now?

    I think much better times will come. The thing is Russia can afford to wait. Russia isn’t going anywhere. America OTOH will be leaving Europe someday, which will put Russia in the position to impose its will on the feeble, chaotic Ukraine.

    The big reason why Ukrainians are behaving so defiantly towards Russia is the idea, that there is some alternative, “European” future waiting for them in the West. They are hoping that US, NATO and EU will come and solve their problems for them. I feel that their dreams need to be brutally crushed before any warming of relations can begin between Russia and the Ukraine.

  7. Jon0815 says:

    Russia can’t throw Iran in Syria for the simple reason that it provides much of the Syrian government’s budget (~$10 billion per annum), and a large percentage of its most combat-capable units.

    Syria didn’t need Iranian help to retake East Ghouta and Daraa.

  8. @Felix Keverich

    “The big reason why Ukrainians are behaving so defiantly towards Russia is the idea, that there is some alternative, “European” future waiting for them in the West. They are hoping that US, NATO and EU will come and solve their problems for them. I feel that their dreams need to be brutally crushed before any warming of relations can begin between Russia and the Ukraine.”
    But you do want Ukraine and Russia to normalize their relations?

    • Replies: @Felix Keverich
  9. neutral says:

    Putin should have invited him to Russia, the optics of having no mass protests like in London would be a useful propaganda victory. On the one hand you have a supposed ally where the people are foaming at the mouth at Trump (and basically the values of the people that voted for him), on the other hand you have a country that is supposed to be great evil not behaving like this.

  10. Mr. XYZ says:

    : It might make more sense for Russia to maintain the status quo in the Donbass so that it will have a base from which to capture some or all of the other parts of right-bank Ukraine at some future point in time (probably after this territory will experience significant depopulation–given that pro-Russian sentiments in Ukraine have significantly fallen over the last several years even in the traditionally pro-Russian parts of Ukraine).

    It might make sense for Ukrainians from western Ukraine to move to eastern and southern Ukraine in order to ensure that its population doesn’t drop too much. After all, if Russia’s population will decline at a much slower pace than right-bank Ukraine’s population will, then it will probably be easier for Russia to occupy right-bank Ukraine. (Of course, such a move would certainly be extremely risky and thus I strongly doubt that Putin or anyone with a similar mind would ever actually do this. However, if Russian nationalists in the mold of Anatoly Karlin will eventually come to power in Russia, then all bets are off!)

    • Replies: @Hyperborean
  11. Mr. Hack says:
    @Felix Keverich

    You cannot deny that Ukraine is becoming stronger day by day, and that the time for Russia to impose its will on Ukraine was in 2014, not now or into the future, as Karlin has pointed out on several occasions. Only an armchair commentator makes such foolish and cavalier statements, not a leader of any country. What does Russia have to gain by trying to subjugate an extremely recalcitrant Ukraine anyway? Russia needs to learn that its better to gain allies with a carrot, not with a stick.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  12. Beckow says:
    @Ludwig

    Trump has a business mentality and believes his job entails selling US products worldwide to benefit the US

    True, but Trump also has a personal code. He is not just business-reactive, he seems to act on some things that fit his worldview. People who dismiss him as a marketing charlatan miss this about him.

    Trump is not ideological and doesn’t seem to hold deep-seated anti-Russian hatreds that define so much of Western thinking. Current hysteria would not be possible without the generations long build-up. It is not fake hatred, they are not doing it for careers or money. You can see it in the way they twist anything, always ready to believe the worst about Russia. Trump is an exception, that is one reason they hate him so much. Similar hatred was directed at previous non-haters of Russia, like Berlusconi, Fillon, Orban, Schroeder.

    Trump is different. And that’s why ‘two Hitlers‘ meeting in Helsinki is significant. The meeting itself normalises the situation, and we can see the strange last minute attempts to spoil it. They know that once routine, normal relations are allowed, their crazy house of cards will collapse. We will see more nutty stuff soon, the whole ‘meddling’, ‘Skripals’, Crimea-Syria hysteria is part of the preparation. I have said for a while that the current years will be in a history Chapter called ‘Causes’…if anyone is alive to write it.

    • Replies: @Anon
  13. Dmitry says:

    Putin needs to be charming with Trump.

    Trump is a little crazy, but also friendly guy who is open minded on the future relationship.

    I disagree with Karlin, there is no need for miracles- building relationships and reduction of tension is positive and what taxpayers’ pay officials and diplomats for.

    Personal relationships could (for what we know) have more influence on policies decided in Washington, than people on websites like this, or even serious newspapers, imagine (journalists writing these long articles and complex theories for politicians’ behaviour which are epistemically, always, massively underdetermined by evidence).

    And to be personally friendly with Trump doesn’t cost anything.

    -

    Chinese leadership has already followed this pathway (very charming to Trump) – their success is difficult to evaluate. Trump has nonetheless began trade-wars with China. However, all other things being equal, it’s very possible that Trump is using a lot softer policies now, than in an alternative universe in which Chinese leadership had not been charming to Trump.

  14. Let’s think about what each man would want, if he could have his wishes.

    I think Trump would like Russia to join the west, his west. Rejoin the G-7, dump China, dump Iran, manage the world together as a duopoly.

    And probably Putin would love to see America stick to its own hemisphere. Ditch NATO, get out of Europe, restrain Britain and Israel perhaps.

  15. Beckow says:

    to be personally friendly with Trump doesn’t cost anything

    …it also doesn’t do anything. Trump is not in a position to do much, although he can prevent some extreme escalations. As did his predecessors – Obama, Bush…all the way to Reagan – there is a pattern of US presidents who are level-headed but surrounded and pushed by Washington cadres who would like a conflict no matter what. President’s role has been to restrain outright crazies. That’s why Clinton would have been so dangerous, she was one of the worst crazies herself, she wouldn’t restrain anything.

    There is also no point in any new agreements between US/Nato and Russia. First they have to fight some more to establish what are the natural boundaries. US wouldn’t observe any deals anyway. Assad won in Syria, Ukraine is not going to prosper and will not be in EU, sanctions are hurting all sides about the same, Russia cannot betray China (or Iran) after China stood by them in 2014. So what deal? Maybe agreeing that nuking each other would be an overkill is enough.

    • Replies: @Jaakko Raipala
  16. Beckow says:
    @Mr. Hack

    Ukraine is becoming stronger day by day

    It is surviving, but it is still worse off than before Maidan. And it has no realistic path to EU (or Nato). Maidan happened to make things better, to eliminate corruption, to get legal rights in EU, to increase living standards. None of that has happened, as with the previous failed Orange Revolution 10 years earlier.

    Unless a miracle happens, or Europeans wake up one day and decide to send real aid to Ukraine, open their borders to trade, spend $50-100 billion in assistance (as in Poland). Unless that happens Ukraine will stay as it is today, slowly simmering with a bad economy, dropping population, low-level civil war, corruption and an unhappy population. It will explode again, as it did before, and what is it going to be this time? Even more fanatically ‘pro-West’, what are they going to do, tattoo Juncker’s face on their money? This is a cul-de-sac, all Russia has to do is wait. And by 2020 the transit fees will go close to zero. There is no deal there, Ukrainians need to fix this themselves.

    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
    , @jimmyriddle
  17. Surprisingly reasonable. No doubt, Trump’s summit with Putin will yield exactly what Trump’s summit with Un did: PR on both sides and nothing substantive.

  18. @Felix Keverich

    Unfortunately, there are essentially two types of Ukrainian residents. Some think that the US, EU, and NATO will come and solve their problems for them. The others think that Russia will come and solve their problems for them. Neither is going to happen. The US never spent a penny on anyone (Israel excepted: you do pay your masters). Normal US modus operandi is leave a pile of shit and wait for someone else to clean it up. It did leave a pile of shit – current regime in Kiev, but there are no volunteers to clean it up.

    Europe is closer, but the EU would become seriously involved only after a major catastrophe is disintegrating Ukraine, like another Chernobyl or a major accident on one of the remaining chemical plants. Then the EU will pay Putin to take control of nuclear power plants and major chemical facilities, take away the grenade from the monkey, so to speak.

    The realists in Ukraine are the ones who believe that Ukrainians should solve their problems themselves. As long as these are a tiny minority, Ukraine will sink deeper and deeper, with no end in sight. Ukraine is in a hole it dug for itself, financial, economical, administrative, cultural, you name it. Most Russian citizens despise Ukraine residents for what they did to their country, whereas their feeling towards the Americans and Europeans who created this mess in the hopes of using rotten to the core Ukraine as a battering ram against Russia are best described by the German word schadenfreude.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  19. Beckow says:
    @AnonFromTN

    What you have today in Ukraine is a cargo cult. That never goes well. Western geo-politcal geniuses have also not thought through the whole “using Ukraine as a battering ram against Russia“. To batter others one has to stand on a firm ground.

    The issue is some really stupid people close to power who think of Russia as Carthage, and like to whisper to each other Cato’s “Carthago delenda est“. Well, this is not a game, and facile ancient analogies don’t work. The biggest problem with Western thinking today are false analogies. Starting with spotting Hitler behind every bush, dreaming of Churchillian posturing, this systemic misreading of history, using myths as tranquillisers has led to some really bad initiatives. I agree that US will never spend a penny to help Ukraine, it is a toy for them. They are not serious people, they break things and move on.

    • Replies: @Spisarevski
  20. Mr. XYZ says:

    : Russia tried winning over Ukraine with carrots up to 2013. It didn’t work.

    Also, I do suspect that most of the Ukrainian people are indeed lost to Russia. However, due to the depopulation that is going on in right-bank Ukraine, Russia could eventually have some kind of chance to take this territory–by which point this territory will have lost a lot of its people, of course.

    • Replies: @Philip Owen
  21. Mr. Hack says:
    @Beckow

    What I meant by ‘stronger day by day’ is basically militarily, and that it would be much more difficult for Russia to try and subjucate Ukraine today than back in 2014. As for Ukraine’s chances for an economic recovery, I’ve quit attempting to to make such predictions long ago. I know that you’ve heard it before, but it is true, Ukraine does contain many excellent attibutes that would lend themselves for a great economy: great agricultural land, lots of valuable minerals, an educated citizenry, a great location, etc; etc; China has been paying ever more attention to Ukraine, year by year.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  22. @Beckow

    some really stupid people close to power who think of Russia as Carthage, and like to whisper to each other Cato’s “Carthago delenda est“

    Especially when it’s actually America that bears similarities to Carthage – from being a merchant naval power to the occult practices of its elites.

    • Replies: @Felix Keverich
  23. Beckow says:
    @Mr. Hack

    …great agricultural land, lots of valuable minerals, an educated citizenry, a great location

    The location is right next to Russia. One can fight a lot of things, but not geography. But I agree that Ukraine has potential. What it lacks are some other prerequisites: rule of law, safety of assets, people who plan to stay and make it work. And realism, one has to start with understanding where they live, what are the constraints, how to play neighbours against each other, etc…

    For an outsider, Ukraine looks like a typical plunder economy with very little long-term thinking. And low loyalty by its elites. When you have that, outsiders also mostly come for plunder, so Chinese ‘paying more attention‘ might not be such a great thing. They are hungry people, those Chinamen, they are not coming to make Ukrainians rich, they will want stuff…

    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
  24. @Rattus Norwegius

    My preferred scenario would be to have the Ukraine occupied and eventually annexed to Russia. However, so long as any such normalisation happens on Moscow terms, I could live with that.

    If the Ukraine isn’t ready to accept Moscow terms at this time, then we can afford to wait, as the time is actually on Russia’s side. It would be cruel and unfair to the people of Donbass, but realistically Russia has all the time in the world.

    • Replies: @AnonFromTN
  25. @Spisarevski

    Carthage also relied on troops made up of foreign mercenaries, similar to modern US army, which hires immigrants. That rarely ends well, though fortunately for USA, it is unlikely to ever face an invasion of its homeland.

  26. LondonBob says:

    Trump wants out of Syria, Putin can facilitate that happening without body bags. Israel hate this hence the propaganda campaign since Netanyahu came back from Russia empty handed. Trump also needs Russian approval for the Palestine peace plan, firm no from Putin.

    I expect some arms control deal, particularly in regard to nukes.

    Perhaps something on equalising tariffs between the two countries.

    Talk is always good, and Trump will learn something.

  27. @Mr. XYZ

    Did you mean Left-bank Ukraine? Right-bank Ukraine is actually on the west aide of the Dnieper river.

    Because the river flows downwards the directions from the perspective of a map are reversed.

  28. @Beckow

    The previous Clinton and Yeltsin met in Helsinki in 1997 and that one is a good example – Bill Clinton and the Washington political class were totally aligned in pushing for complete humiliation and they got it. The biggest issue there was NATO eastern expansion, Yeltsin arrived with the opinion that its totally unacceptable to Russia and yet the Americans pushed their line through with no concessions.

    Finnish press is of course still in the globalist pocket and full of praise for the 1997 summit while trashing tomorrow’s results before they’re even known. The largest newspaper dug up former US ambassador to Finland from 1997 Mr Derek Shearer, a Clinton loyalist who thinks the 1997 summit was a great achievement.

    https://www.hs.fi/ulkomaat/art-2000005755862.html

    “Putin is a master spy and Trump is a useful idiot”

    (Apparently Clinton succeeded at convincing Yeltsin that NATO expanding into Poland and the Baltic States is no threat to Russia. Strangely I remember a somewhat unconvinced Yeltsin.)

    “Trump doesn’t follow the instructions of political experts, he believes he can get results with his individual qualities.”

    “Trump will publicly criticize his NATO allies, then Britain and then go to Finland to hug Putin and tell us what a great guy he is. Then Putin will deny influencing the US presidential election.”

    “These are not democratic leaders, they are authoritarians. They both attack the press and say things that aren’t true. Then they accuse the independent press of fake news.”

    “Finland is not a neutral country like it was during the Cold War. To me it is important that Finland’s position is the position of the EU. It means that Finns should criticize Putin. Finland should be bold and express its opinion about Trump and Putin.”

    Thank God it’s not Clinton. I would love to see some significant surprise agreement just to keep the salt coming and coming.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  29. Karlin’s analysis is correct, but Vox Day’s saying “Never count the God-Emperor out” applies.

    Trump has truly been impressive lately and has finally hit his stride. Let’s not forget that a GOP delegation from Congress went to Moscow in advance of this as well, and the party realizes it’s now totally dependent on Trump.

    It’s highly unlikely that the US sanctions regime can be moved much, but we could see progress in a totally unexpected area. Arms control or trade for instance.

    If nothing else I’m excited and we should get some great photos.

  30. Trump has truly been impressive lately and has finally hit his stride.

    Can you please elaborate a bit here? I certainly see for example the case of the Supreme Justices appontements — but in that case there was a lot of luck involved too (the fact that 2 slots became available during his tenure rather, say, a couple of years earlier).

    the party realizes it’s now totally dependent on Trump

    If so, then it’s a good development indeed. What makes you say this? What about the influence of entrenched swamp creatures like Ryan or Graham (not mentioning McCain who will probably be decommissioned soon).

    I recently traveled to the USA, specifically to the Left Coast. I was taken to dinner after work by a group of people from our client company: mostly millenials, all tech-types, all whites except for some Indians. A few of the millenials wanted to have me, the euro guest, bash Trump and say how superior the euro polities are better than the US in so many respects, from “healthcare” to “education”, and of course “gun control”. To their great dismay I did not share their liberal zeal — although I had to remain low-key due to the fact that that we’re suppliers of their employer. But nonetheless I delivered a few blows to the liberal/millennial narrative.

    Interestingly enough there was an Italian gal there, who was totally based as far as I could tell, and was positively nodding at pretty much anything I was saying or responding. But she did not say much, being a co-worker of these millennial jackasses.

    I walked away from that dinner being very concerned for the future of whites in the USA: if their 30-somethings are predominantly like that, they won’t put much of a fight against brownish takeover of their country. Oh and I forgot to say that several of these white dudes seemed suspiciously faggish.

    • Replies: @Mitleser
    , @Thorfinnsson
  31. Mitleser says:
    @Guillaume Tell

    I certainly see for example the case of the Supreme Justices appontements — but in that case there was a lot of luck involved too (the fact that 2 slots became available during his tenure rather, say, a couple of years earlier).

    In case of the second one, it was more than mere luck.

    • Replies: @Guillaume Tell
  32. @Guillaume Tell

    Can you please elaborate a bit here? I certainly see for example the case of the Supreme Justices appontements — but in that case there was a lot of luck involved too (the fact that 2 slots became available during his tenure rather, say, a couple of years earlier).

    In his first year he was very much uncertain and even afraid. Now he knows exactly what he’s doing and has great confidence.

    One of those slots, incidentally, he personally made available through negotation.

    If so, then it’s a good development indeed. What makes you say this? What about the influence of entrenched swamp creatures like Ryan or Graham (not mentioning McCain who will probably be decommissioned soon).

    Other than W in the immediate aftermath of 9-11, Trump has the highest Own Party popularity rating ever.

    I recently traveled to the USA, specifically to the Left Coast. I was taken to dinner after work by a group of people from our client company: mostly millenials, all tech-types, all whites except for some Indians. A few of the millenials wanted to have me, the euro guest, bash Trump and say how superior the euro polities are better than the US in so many respects, from “healthcare” to “education”, and of course “gun control”. To their great dismay I did not share their liberal zeal — although I had to remain low-key due to the fact that that we’re suppliers of their employer. But nonetheless I delivered a few blows to the liberal/millennial narrative.
    Interestingly enough there was an Italian gal there, who was totally based as far as I could tell, and was positively nodding at pretty much anything I was saying or responding. But she did not say much, being a co-worker of these millennial jackasses.
    I walked away from that dinner being very concerned for the future of whites in the USA: if their 30-somethings are predominantly like that, they won’t put much of a fight against brownish takeover of their country. Oh and I forgot to say that several of these white dudes seemed suspiciously faggish.

    I won’t deny that this is a serious problem. A large number of white men in the managerial classes are leftist, especially younger men.

    There has long been a deeply embarrassing tendency in the American left to hero worship Western Europe for allegedly being more sophisticated and progressive than America. As someone with actual European origins I look upon this with deep disdain.

    But we’re not all like that, and I’m confident those of us like me can take on ten men each owing to our superior virility.

    Additionally the next generation (Generation Zyklon) is looking very good so far.

    We can’t take anything for granted or be complacent, but I am confident in victory.

    • Replies: @Guillaume Tell
  33. @Mitleser

    Thank you. I am glad to read there was some strategic planning here. Feels good man :)

  34. @Thorfinnsson

    There has long been a deeply embarrassing tendency in the American left to hero worship Western Europe for allegedly being more sophisticated and progressive than America. As someone with actual European origins I look upon this with deep disdain.

    And as a Euro myself I despise this too — maybe even more than you do. All I have is a contempt for these white American faggots who don’t value the 1st and 2nd amendments to their constitution, things that we can only dream of this side of the water.

    Additionally the next generation (Generation Zyklon) is looking very good so far.

    That is interesting — I’m seeing this on my side of the pond where my teens and theirs friends are rabid right-wingers of a type that was all but inexistant when I was in high school myself. Also the self-segregation from the Vibrants is visually observable. Of course there are also a lot young white women who evidently appear to enjoy being with Arabs, but such girls would be on average of the white trash type. My girls for example are very intelligent and perform remarkably well in school — and are more racist than me.

    But we’re not all like that, and I’m confident those of us like me can take on ten men each owing to our superior virility.

    I agree. In the case of an open conflict. The problem is that of a slow submersion — which is what is happening now.

    I recently read G. Cochran’s 10000 YE. It was good — albeit a bit ad hoc in many places. But he tells a good story and he’s especially convincing regarding the Ashkenazim’s history (because unlike a lot of earlier cases we have a lot of recorded evidence to supplement the evolutionary genetics stuff). I am now convinced that many parallels can be made (and I have started to write these down FWIW) with the case of whites (especially of Northern European variety), who under my theory would be undergoing a rapid adaptation phase that will either see us disappear (or be fully mestizized), or weed out the lame alleles that underlie the liberal mindset.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  35. bob sykes says:

    Actually, Trump can eliminate the sanctions and can recognize Crimea as part of Russia. Those are foreign policy choices, and the President controls foreign policy. The laws denying him that power are unconstitutional. He might have bigger fish to fry right now, but anytime in the future he deems it opportune, he can do it.

    Ukraine’s problems are its own doing. Ukraine is currently controlled by the oligarchs, not the government of Poroshenko, and their militias. In order to improve the situation, the oligarchs must be removed forcibly and imprisoned, their assets confiscated, and their militias disbanded.

  36. Mr. Hack says:
    @Beckow

    ‘Low loyalty’ by its elites is not endemic to Ukraine, but pretty much a universal phenomena these days around the world. Also, I wouldn’t worry too much about China invading Ukraine to exploit it anytime soon, and there are more realistic threats to its sovereignty located closer to its north. Outside of occasional vocal threats to Taiwan, and even to Russia, the Chinese don’t seem hellbent on any imminent anschluss type operations. China is showing more adeptness and sophistication in its future plans of conquest, by building its silk road railway system. Ukraine looks perfectly poised to also take advantage of this modern day miracle.

  37. Beckow says:
    @Jaakko Raipala

    ….then Putin will deny influencing the US presidential election…Finland is not a neutral country…

    It is amusing how consistent the narrative is across the globalist media. They all say the same stuff…we get the ‘talking points’ in our (mostly German) owned media. Our ‘journalists’ are often too lazy to do more than translate it and one sees it word-for-word in different Central European countries. And it is not AP or Reuters – those are actually slightly better – the texts come from some mysterious source that never varies. But almost nobody here believes it, propaganda is easy to spot and above all it is predictable and boring. Nobody has also ever figured out how to make money on pushing propaganda so it is a huge money drain for the global elites. They never learn, so many others have been down this road before…

    Regarding the summit: globalist West has been paralysed since Brexit-Trump-Merkel’s fiasco in 2015-16. They cannot win elections any more, they cannot start and win wars, Western economy is fatally dependent on ultra-low interest rates and silly make-work ‘entrepreneurship’. They don’t know what to do about it. If they do nothing, in a few years they will be even worse off. So they are trashing around trying everything from threats to promises. But they are really just playing for time, trying to stall long enough – that is always the latter phase right before a dramatic change. Stalling and endless talk of ‘reforms’. The internal fights have now gone for the jugular (‘Trump is Hitler’), talk of treason etc… another sign that the system is hopelessly unstable.

    This is not 1997 and West has nothing they can negotiate. It is good to meet, I agree, but it is sadly pointless.

    • Replies: @Hail
  38. Beckow says:
    @Mr. Hack

    I agree that elites have been ‘globalised’ everywhere. They mostly look out for only their own narrow interest. But in Ukraine this is made worse by lack of accountability, missing independent upper middle class, and just the more flighty ‘dual-or-triple’ elite citizenships. It is a continuum and in Ukraine it is worse and that matters.

    Chinese are coming to plunder, to get cheap resources and sell their trinkets. Ukraine is not ‘poised’ for anything, because it is actually geographically blocked by Russia. So any participation in the silk road will depend on Russia’s goodwill and China will also not offend Moscow.

    What do you think will happen once the pipelines are irrelevant by 2020? It is not just the transit money, it is also the fact that Ukraine will go to ‘pay-as-you-go’ system: paying more and having no guarantees. Its remaining industry depends on cheap energy. I really don’t think this is going to get better. When you argue with you landlord, he can raise your rent. What then? Where is Ukraine planning to ‘move’?

    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
  39. Mr. Hack says:
    @Beckow

    ‘Chinese trinkets’? C’mon you can do a little better than that?

    If Russia wants to continue its military adventures in Ukraine, by blocking its access to China’s silk road railway, then Russia is risking an even greater war, that I don’t think it really needs or wants. Russia’s energy policies vis-a-vis Europe have been in a state of flux for several years now. And the new sheriff in town is in Europe to try and convince Europeans to not shut the US out of their energy equation. Who knows, Ukraine without Russian energy tariffs may be good thing down the road, like the sanctions against Russia – it’ll force Ukraine to find other revenue generating projects.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  40. @Felix Keverich

    From my conversations with people living in Russia (including Ukrainians and those who have close relatives in Ukraine, which together constitute about a quarter of Russian population), I got an impression that Russians are against that scenario. Many of them say, “with brothers like that, who needs enemies”. Males who served in the Soviet Army also mention that there were lots of Ukrainian NCOs, most notable for their thievery and cowardice. Fits the pattern of the behavior of Ukrainian elites since 1991.

    Bottom line is, most Russian people do not want Ukraine under any conditions. The people of Donbass (both free and occupied by Ukrainian troops) are even more negative: they believe that meaningful discussions can start only after all Ukrainian Nazis hang from lampposts. There is also a purely financial consideration: Ukraine has almost $80 billion debt, and no Russian is willing to contribute a penny to repay it. Donbass people are even more determined not to repay money borrowed to murder them.

    Russians used to be angry. Now they mostly laugh: Ukraine provides an unrivaled circus, with ludicrous statements by its puffed-cheeks “leaders” and supporters, medically certified retard as the speaker of the parliament, etc. Stand-up comedy does not come close.

  41. Mikhail says: • Website
    @Felix Keverich

    I’m actually inclined to a agree with some of the Western commentary on this subject.

    What’s in it for Putin? Perhaps, he wants some extra legitimacy, that comes from being seen in the company of American president? We know that Putin feels insecure about his rule, so do many of his cronies – and all of them are afflicted by Russian (Eastern European really) inferiority complex. So this meeting could provide a much needed confidence boost for the Russian “elite”. It is a “win” simply to have American president talking to you, and not kicking you in face, if only for a few short hours. If that is the case, the impact of this summit will be primarily therapeutical.

    Michael McFaul stated similarly noted here:

    https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2018/07/12/more-mumbo-jumbo-on-russia.html

    Putin clearly doesn’t need the meeting with Trump for appearance sake.

  42. @Mr. Hack

    Why this positive tone about China? Isn’t this a betrayal of the Ukraine’s Western partners and all those brave Ukrainians who died at Maidan for Ukraine’s right to a Yuropean Future? Shouldn’t Ukrainians stand strong against any form of collaboration with a autocratic superpower that seeks to ensnare the whole world?

    Any case the Ukraine’s main value to China lies in its military technology that the PRC would like to acquire:

    China increasingly looks to Ukraine to help its armed forces become self-sufficient in the production of military hardware.

    Beijing Skyrizon Aviation is currently trying to buy a controlling stake in Ukrainian company Motor Sich, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of engines for military aircraft.

    Another company aims to buy two Antonov An-225 Mriyas – the world’s largest cargo planes – but build them in China.

    Previously permitted only for state-owned companies, relaxation of the regulations means that private firms can now cash in on the Chinese export market too.

    While most Nato countries have a moratorium on the sale of weapons and weapon technology to China, it has become Ukraine’s biggest market with US$100 million in annual sales.

    Ukrainian parts can already be found in Chinese military hardware from fighter jets and long-range missiles and aircraft carriers.

    Of course China also has other interests in the Ukraine:

    With Russia sidelined, China takes the lead in pushing deep into Ukraine, investing billions into infrastructure, agriculture and energy.

    https://m.scmp.com/news/world/europe/article/2153624/ukraines-path-nato-complicated-close-ties-china

    But after China has acquired all the military know-how it desires from the Ukraine it seems like the only thing that will remain is a very tributary relationship.

    • LOL: Mr. Hack
    • Replies: @LatW
    , @Daniel Chieh
  43. @Guillaume Tell

    And as a Euro myself I despise this too — maybe even more than you do. All I have is a contempt for these white American faggots who don’t value the 1st and 2nd amendments to their constitution, things that we can only dream of this side of the water.

    The same white American faggots also fail to understand just why Western Europe has–or had–these nice things. An entirely white population (and ethnically homogenous for that matter).

    That said the Americans who actually go to France and learn how to cook deserve some respect. The late Julia Child comes to mind. As does Anthony Bourdain, though he was awful on politics and probably took his own life as a result of repeated suffering owing to his “blue pill” views on women.

    Not American, but we also have the legendary Jacques Pepin here. He was de Gaulle’s personal chef when he was only twenty years old and de Gaulle was arranging the founding of the Fifth Republic. Pepin since made his career on American television and is still working.

    That is interesting — I’m seeing this on my side of the pond where my teens and theirs friends are rabid right-wingers of a type that was all but inexistant when I was in high school myself. Also the self-segregation from the Vibrants is visually observable.

    The American blogger Audacious Epigone documents this well. It has also been documented in Sweden, which I predict will be a Nazi state in 15 years or so.

    Of course there are also a lot young white women who evidently appear to enjoy being with Arabs, but such girls would be on average of the white trash type. My girls for example are very intelligent and perform remarkably well in school — and are more racist than me.

    While it disgusts me, I can’t really blame these girls as it’s natural for them to be attracted to virility and violence. American girls have a better immune system to protect against this (thanks to four centuries of negroes), though it happens here as well of course.

    I agree. In the case of an open conflict. The problem is that of a slow submersion — which is what is happening now.
    I recently read G. Cochran’s 10000 YE. It was good — albeit a bit ad hoc in many places. But he tells a good story and he’s especially convincing regarding the Ashkenazim’s history (because unlike a lot of earlier cases we have a lot of recorded evidence to supplement the evolutionary genetics stuff). I am now convinced that many parallels can be made (and I have started to write these down FWIW) with the case of whites (especially of Northern European variety), who under my theory would be undergoing a rapid adaptation phase that will either see us disappear (or be fully mestizized), or weed out the lame alleles that underlie the liberal mindset.

    An interesting parallel.

    We will also select for religious subgroups.

    I will be driving Amish voters in my area to the polls in November as a result of a recent encounter (I drove some poor fellow to his farm after his horse was injured).

    Their numbers double every 22 years.

  44. Mr. XYZ says:

    @Hyperborean: Yes, I meant left-bank Ukraine.

  45. @Mikhail

    And how would you know what Putin needs? Did you get into his head?

    Putin needs this summit for the same reasons he needed World Cup and Sochi Olympics: he craves legitimacy that these big international events bring.

    • Replies: @Mikhail
    , @Mikhail
  46. Don’t Expect Much from the Helsinki Meeting

    I’ll be satisfied if the press learns to pronounce “Helsinki”.

    They’re getting better at it, but, unfortunately, they’re getting worse at “Moscow”, which doesn’t rhyme with “Roscoe”.

  47. @Mikhail

    Putin clearly doesn’t need the meeting with Trump for appearance sake.

    No, but he might get a hotel or two out of it. “Jobs for the boys!”

    • Replies: @Mikhail
  48. @Thorfinnsson

    It has also been documented in Sweden, which I predict will be a Nazi state in 15 years or so.

    You mean it’s not now?

    The US financial writer Douglas Casey said almost 40 years ago in The International Man that the Scandinavian nations were more accurately viewed as fascist than socialist.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  49. @Reg Cæsar

    The thesis of The New Totalitarians (available free online) was largely correct.

    But Sweden has changed a lot since then.

    And no, the land of Sweden Yes! is not Nazi even if the state itself is quite authoritarian in many respects.

    Let’s not take Doug Casey or any other doomerist at face value either.

    • Replies: @Anon
  50. Anon[298] • Disclaimer says:
    @Beckow

    It is not fake hatred, they are not doing it for careers or money.

    It’s not personal, it’s just business, as a famous person once said. The thing is that the Left has spent ages, not building up a hatred of Russia, but building a conditioned response to the Latest Outrage as dictated by the media. How else does one explain that the same people loudly support dismembering nearly-born babies and practically threaten to assault immigration agents for “separating children” from parents?

    Similar hatred was directed at previous non-haters of Russia, like Berlusconi, Fillon, Orban, Schroeder.

    Precisely; this is not an issue of generations at all, but of one generation.

  51. Anon[298] • Disclaimer says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    All Nazis were authoritarian but not all authoritarians are Nazis– hardly any, in fact. There’s a decent case to be made that the Nazis weren’t “fascist”, either, except in the sense that Scandinavia is.

    • Replies: @LatW
  52. JL says:

    I find it interesting that Trump is insisting on talking to Putin alone, with no advisors present. Is this an insignificant detail, or will there be a potentially more important side deal to what’s announced publicly?

    • Replies: @LondonBob
    , @notanon
  53. notanon says:
    @reiner Tor

    So why did he meet?

    what is the neocon plan for eastern Syria?

    they wanted to detach the territory east of the Euphrates from Syria so they could take oil from both Syria and northern Iraq out via Turkey (for petrodollar reasons)

    to that end the US has a proxy army backed by special forces holding Syria east of the Euphrates

    Isis in the center and the other proxy army on the border with Israel had to be dealt with first but now we are heading for a major superpower confrontation across the Euphrates

    hopefully this meeting will prevent that.

    so it’s a big deal – although i agree there won’t be much visibly to show for it other than not a war

  54. Mitleser says:

  55. LondonBob says:
    @JL

    Very significant, they can really talk shop and not worry about Trump’s unreliable underlyings with their own agendas. Trump is hitting his stride now, he is the boss.

  56. Beckow says:
    @Mr. Hack

    …If Russia wants to continue its military adventures in Ukraine, by blocking its access to China’s silk road railway, then Russia is risking an even greater war…

    They don’t have to ‘block’ anything. They can simply not allow transit through their territory. Look at the problems Kazakhstan and Central Asia have had to get access to Europe. They have to go through Russia, that’s simple geography.

    Now you can come up with a convoluted – and expensive – route that bypasses Russia by using Azeri and Georgian corridor, or Turkey. But the geography of Caucasus mnts is very harsh and Russia’s ability to block it is relatively easy. And if the Silk Road reaches Turkey, it makes no sense to route it up to Ukraine. Why not just use the Balkan route?

    As with gas transit, Russia holds the upper geographic hand with Silk Road, too. China will not choose to antagonize Russia, and risk Silk Road’s success, by helping Ukraine. For that Russia would have to agree.

    I know you hate that reality, I know that you think that ‘it is unfair’, but grown-ups look at reality as it is, not as they would like it. Life is unfair. Regarding finding an alternative $3 billion to replace the gas transit fees: if that is possible, why not do it today? Or is Ukraine so rich that it foregoes business opportunities? What you say makes no sense.

    • Replies: @AP
    , @Mr. Hack
  57. notanon says:
    @JL

    significant – it means he’s trying to shut out the neocons in the state dept

  58. AP says:
    @Beckow

    I know that you think that ‘it is unfair’, but grown-ups look at reality as it is, not as they would like it

    .

    Advice you have failed to apply, yourself.

    • Replies: @Beckow
    , @Anatoly Karlin
  59. Beckow says:
    @AP

    When?

    • Replies: @AP
  60. Surprise, surprise.

    U.K. Poisoning Inquiry Turns to Russian Agency in Mueller Indictments

    LONDON — The same Russian military intelligence service now accused of disrupting the 2016 presidential election in America may also be responsible for the nerve agent attack in Britain against a former Russian spy — an audacious poisoning that led to a geopolitical confrontation this spring between Moscow and the West.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/15/world/europe/uk-skripal-russia-novichok.html

    • Replies: @Beckow
    , @AnonFromTN
  61. Beckow says:
    @for-the-record

    disrupting the 2016 presidential election …

    What is ‘disrupting’? Were they yelling from the sidelines or getting up in the middle of Clinton’s speeches? Why is it illegal to disrupt candidates? Can one disagree with liberals, or is that a form of ‘disruption’? I am at a loss for words, what a f..ing democracy, no disruptions allowed. I think Kim’s version of democracy also has no disruptions. So onward, fearless progressives, you could have disruption-free democracy too.

    The phrase ‘may also be responsible‘ is very creepy. The juxtaposition of ‘also’ with ‘may’ says it all. What ‘also‘? And isn’t ‘may‘ the lowest attribution verb in the English language? I may have done a lot of things. Or maybe, I may have not…

  62. @Beckow

    https://medium.com/mtracey/russian-hackers-provided-vital-information-to-american-voters-d7fb0f9ec50b

    Interfering with the planned coronation of Her Majesty Hil-dawg and empowering the Deplorables was disruption.

    Russians are convenient bogeymen and villains and were thus assigned the blame.

    Watching Democrats pretend to be patriots is stomach turning.

  63. Mr. Hack says:
    @Beckow

    I think that for the Chinese, a stable Ukrainian/Russian relationship would result in the best possible outcome. The Silk Road’s most direct route to Western Europe is right through Ukraine , that’s simply geography. Keeping Ukraine within this transit route also ensures access to Ukraine’s markets too, not to mentions China’s ever present need for more foodstuffs. China is quite interested in kickstarting Ukraine’s usage of arable land, of which a large portion is still uncultivated. Also, don’t forget that there are a lot of providers of gas and oil in the world, it isn’t as if Russia is the only possible provider of this commodity (Kazakhstan comes to mind, as do other countries in Central Asia and the Caucasus).

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    , @LatW
    , @Beckow
  64. @Beckow

    If you read the article you will have to admit that it is quite well done (in its own terms). The “average” person will find it convincing.

  65. @AP

    I’m not exactly a Ukrodoomer, but I don’t see how Beckow is wrong there.

    First, One Belt One Road initiative is several routes, of which the Eurasian route though Russia is only one of several.

    Second, it doesn’t of course have to pass through the Ukraine. Russia is the most critical component; Kazakhstan is important as well. Otherwise, it can just as easily be routed through Belorussia or the Baltics (though latter is ofc unlikely).

    • Replies: @AP
    , @utu
  66. @Mr. Hack

    Ukraine’s market is currently very small; approximately a tenth of Russia’s, though it has the potential to grow much bigger.

    Arable land cultivation is hampered by Ukraine’s bans on agricultural land sales, which they show no signs of wanting to drop.

  67. Brabantian says: • Website

    One of the most ‘pro-Russian’ of the influential dissident websites, has long been Veterans Today (VT), with its well-connected retired military and intel people … the site’s biggest Putin fanboy is Jonas Alexis, a USA black guy with a gig teaching in South Korea, but the site’s two top key people, Gordon Duff and Jim Dean – personal visitors on the ground in Syria, welcomed by the Assad government – have long been Russia boosters, with a number of their pieces published jointly on Russia-linked sites such as New Eastern Outlook

    However, VT is getting quite fed up with Vladimir Putin’s indulgence of Israeli killings of their friends in Syria, and Duff the other day wrote, exploding in anger:

    We have the years-long history of Putin kissing Netanyahu’s ass and letting him bomb Syria at will, when Russia could put a stop to it in seconds. Like nobody notices.

  68. @Thorfinnsson

    The same white American faggots also fail to understand just why Western Europe has–or had–these nice things. An entirely white population (and ethnically homogenous for that matter).

    Yes. I can tell you first-hand that this is changing, rapidly. A lot of the “nice things” that were just a given in my youth are now a thing of the past. Like: safe and good public schools; clean train stations and other sorts of public services; reliable health services with no ridiculous waiting lines, etc.

    That said the Americans who actually go to France and learn how to cook deserve some respect. The late Julia Child comes to mind. As does Anthony Bourdain, though he was awful on politics and probably took his own life as a result of repeated suffering owing to his “blue pill” views on women.
    Not American, but we also have the legendary Jacques Pepin here. He was de Gaulle’s personal chef when he was only twenty years old and de Gaulle was arranging the founding of the Fifth Republic. Pepin since made his career on American television and is still working.

    You obviously know a lot about French cuisine… if we ever get to do the “Russian Reaction Blog International Conference” in wet space, we have stuff to share here. I did not even know that poor Bourdain had killed himself — I knew of him, but I did not realize he was dead. Sad.

    The American blogger Audacious Epigone documents this well. It has also been documented in Sweden, which I predict will be a Nazi state in 15 years or so.

    I did not know that blogger (TBH I do not know very much about blogs — I landed here as a result of your Tesla article in fact!).

    While it disgusts me, I can’t really blame these girls as it’s natural for them to be attracted to virility and violence. American girls have a better immune system to protect against this (thanks to four centuries of negroes), though it happens here as well of course.

    I did not realize about the Negro vaccine, but it does make sense. French women with a family “Pied Noir” ancestry are also extremely racist against north-africans.
    Regarding the attraction to virility and violence, I agree and I believe this is also one of Talha’s points (and a valid one I think; however it must be qualified, in particular because of the widespread praxis of male-on-male [email protected]@my in the Maghreb).

    I agree. In the case of an open conflict. The problem is that of a slow submersion — which is what is happening now.
    I recently read G. Cochran’s 10000 YE. It was good — albeit a bit ad hoc in many places. But he tells a good story and he’s especially convincing regarding the Ashkenazim’s history (because unlike a lot of earlier cases we have a lot of recorded evidence to supplement the evolutionary genetics stuff). I am now convinced that many parallels can be made (and I have started to write these down FWIW) with the case of whites (especially of Northern European variety), who under my theory would be undergoing a rapid adaptation phase that will either see us disappear (or be fully mestizized), or weed out the lame alleles that underlie the liberal mindset.

    I will be driving Amish voters in my area to the polls in November as a result of a recent encounter (I drove some poor fellow to his farm after his horse was injured).
    Their numbers double every 22 years.

    Good for them. And good you for having been a Good Samaritan. And for us too, in fact, because these are the types of Whites we want to help go through the evolutionary bottleneck. Not that we can change the big picture of course — although the genetic legacy of Gengis Khan is absolute proof that one man not only can, but will make a difference (sometimes).

    Now, a question for our upcoming symposium: is propensity towards Liberalism maladaptive? Considering the fact that it lead to the creation of the United States of America, arguably the single most powerful polity that has ever existed under the Sun, we must at least admit that it was very adaptive at least for a couple of centuries. But of course, just like the genes making someone resistant to extreme cold will not longer increase fitness as much in a post-glacial period environment, what used to be a comparative advantage may “overplay its evolutionary hand”, so to speak.

    There is a Jewish-American (Ashkenazi) rabbi, Samuel Dresner, who wrote an interesting book more than 20 years ago:

    https://www.amazon.com/Can-Families-Survive-Pagan-America/dp/1563840804

    where he was arguing that Jews were not only perpetrators of the destruction of the traditional, Christian morality of America, but that in so doing they were creating the very conditions of their own inevitable demise. Having just closed Cochran’s aforementioned book a few days ago, I find that what the good rabbi was seeing from a purely sociological/pastoral point of view makes a whole lot of sense in evolutionary terms too: specifically, comparative advantages that have ceased to be so.

  69. Trump getting into his comedy routine.

  70. @Guillaume Tell

    I did not know that blogger (TBH I do not know very much about blogs — I landed here as a result of your Tesla article in fact!).

    I summarized his Generation Zyklon thing here: http://www.unz.com/akarlin/generation-zyklon/

    Regarding the attraction to virility and violence…

    http://www.unz.com/akarlin/the-strong-horse/

    • Replies: @Guillaume Tell
  71. @Guillaume Tell

    Yes. I can tell you first-hand that this is changing, rapidly. A lot of the “nice things” that were just a given in my youth are now a thing of the past. Like: safe and good public schools; clean train stations and other sorts of public services; reliable health services with no ridiculous waiting lines, etc.

    The only good thing that has come of this is the final end of social democracy.

    But if we solve our problem it will unfortunately emerge again.

    Perhps my idea of “cheap populism” can keep it at bay.

    You obviously know a lot about French cuisine… if we ever get to do the “Russian Reaction Blog International Conference” in wet space, we have stuff to share here. I did not even know that poor Bourdain had killed himself — I knew of him, but I did not realize he was dead. Sad.

    I read his book recently as a result of his demise. An excellent book with interesting tales of visiting France in his childhood (he is, as you can surmise, of French origins), though it is cheapened by liberal use of tawdry kitchen talk.

    I’ve never worked in a restaurant (not counting a spell at Domino’s as a teenager) but in my 20s socialized with many people in the industry. They are basically criminals to a man, but entertaining and endearing.

    I did not know that blogger (TBH I do not know very much about blogs — I landed here as a result of your Tesla article in fact!).

    Well, glad I did more than help some people make some money down the road. What were you searching for?

    I find the Unz Review to be the best source on the internet. Not just Karlin, but also Steve Sailer and Ron Unz himself.

    I agree. In the case of an open conflict. The problem is that of a slow submersion — which is what is happening now.
    I recently read G. Cochran’s 10000 YE. It was good — albeit a bit ad hoc in many places. But he tells a good story and he’s especially convincing regarding the Ashkenazim’s history (because unlike a lot of earlier cases we have a lot of recorded evidence to supplement the evolutionary genetics stuff). I am now convinced that many parallels can be made (and I have started to write these down FWIW) with the case of whites (especially of Northern European variety), who under my theory would be undergoing a rapid adaptation phase that will either see us disappear (or be fully mestizized), or weed out the lame alleles that underlie the liberal mindset.

    The Cochran-Harpending thesis is likely correct, but Ashkenazi intelligence is overrated (as documented by Ron Unz). Probably their mean IQ is around 108–lower than European nobility.

    We can contend with these people. I’ve never been intimidated by Jewish intelligence.

    Now, a question for our upcoming symposium: is propensity towards Liberalism maladaptive? Considering the fact that it lead to the creation of the United States of America, arguably the single most powerful polity that has ever existed under the Sun, we must at least admit that it was very adaptive at least for a couple of centuries. But of course, just like the genes making someone resistant to extreme cold will not longer increase fitness as much in a post-glacial period environment, what used to be a comparative advantage may “overplay its evolutionary hand”, so to speak.

    The United States is powerful simply because of its population and resources. No matter what the political and ideological system unified Americans are fated to be powerful.

    The Declaration of Independence is a pack of lies and liberalism has led us to repeatedly circumscribe our power. We failed to take more of Mexico because of Whiggish opposition to the war.

    There is a Jewish-American (Ashkenazi) rabbi, Samuel Dresner, who wrote an interesting book more than 20 years ago:

    https://www.amazon.com/Can-Families-Survive-Pagan-America/dp/1563840804

    where he was arguing that Jews were not only perpetrators of the destruction of the traditional, Christian morality of America, but that in so doing they were creating the very conditions of their own inevitable demise. Having just closed Cochran’s aforementioned book a few days ago, I find that what the good rabbi was seeing from a purely sociological/pastoral point of view makes a whole lot of sense in evolutionary terms too: specifically, comparative advantages that have ceased to be so.

    The Jews have made things much worse, but nearly all destructive liberal ideas were invented by Anglos themselves.

    I hate to admit it, but probably Martin Luther is to blame.

    • Replies: @Guillaume Tell
  72. @for-the-record

    No surprise. The same scriptwriters for the “Russiagate” fake and UK false flags (possibly fakes), so the same “suspects”.

    Tell you what, the same Russian secret service officers on Putin’s orders killed JFK, crucified Christ, poisoned Socrates, and murdered all dinosaurs. I am surprised NYT and CNN haven’t discovered it yet. Stay tuned.

  73. LatW says:
    @Mr. Hack

    Recently the poster Daniel Chieh and I briefly touched on the topic of the Belarus-Poland trade route that China uses (and where it seems the intensity of traffic will go up as well as the infrastructure development). Currently China and Belarus are developing an industrial park called Great Stone, which may receive up to $2 billion in Chinese investments (potentially even more in the future). Of course, Belarus is not the same as Ukraine, but this provides an interesting context, as well as makes one wonder about how this could influence Russia’s relations with Belarus. Hypothetically, if Russia ever wanted to incorporate Belarus – how would China react now that it has invested there? In the worst case scenario, China would acquiesce to some “soft” type of annexation, but anything of the sort that happened in Ukraine would probably not be to China’s liking at all. Can China diplomatically defend the Intermarium states against Russia because of its growing investments? China would not be interested in any Maidan type of situations, nor in any physical form of Russian expansionism (it would be up to Belarus to decide if it wants permanent Russian troops on their soil or not). The beauty of it is that this is done bilaterally (“na primuyu” as Russians say) – neither Russia (it seems), nor the EU have any leverage there and it is done for mutual benefit. And notice how strategically China places its investments – in non-aligned states right around the EU (Belarus, Serbia). So that they wouldn’t have to directly deal with the EU legislation but could still benefit from the trade with the EU. China is interested that there is peace in the region. Let’s flatter them a bit, they’ll like it.

    Wikipedia mentions investments of up to $30bn at Great Stone:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/China-Belarus_Industrial_Park

    “In the long term, the project might receive up to $30 billion worth of investment. According to Alexander Lukashenko, the implementation of this project will allow receipt of up to an additional $50 billion annually from exports.”

    With regard to the chernozem, Ukraine should be very careful about how it’s used – a lease would be better than a permanent sale (China could still make tons of money). Another thing that Ukraine should be cautioned against is the sale of permanent residences – some money can be made there, but it’s not that great in the long term. I don’t know if Ukraine allows this, but a measured approach there would be great.

    • Agree: Mr. Hack
  74. LatW says:
    @Hyperborean

    Why this positive tone about China? Isn’t this a betrayal of the Ukraine’s Western partners and all those brave Ukrainians who died at Maidan for Ukraine’s right to a Yuropean Future? Shouldn’t Ukrainians stand strong against any form of collaboration with a autocratic superpower that seeks to ensnare the whole world?

    Haha, nice try! :) Yes, the EU is great, but Ukraine is not in the EU. The Ukrainians who were at the Maidan care about freedom in their own country first and foremost. And, btw, didn’t you get the memo from Trump? It’s homo homini lupus now. We’re all “foes”, competitors and adversaries now. Has the Western Europe offered anything tangible that Ukraine can use and benefit from (bezviz doesn’t count as it doesn’t really benefit Ukraine all that much), except for some political support? Do Western Europeans care about human rights in China when they do business with them? Did Sweden care about the dead Arab children when it was still selling weapons to the Saudis? Do as I say, not as I do, right?

    Admittedly, some of those Chinese titles do sound a bit funny, to put it mildly, but why should Ukraine care, it’s not Ukraine’s job to save the world – other than that, the decommunization in Ukraine itself is proceeding nicely. Any more Lenins left to topple?

    • Agree: Mr. Hack
  75. LatW says:
    @Anon

    It almost looks like the Folkhemmet concept of the 1950s is really national socialist in its essence, with a parliament, of course, but still pretty close to real national socialism.

  76. AP says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    I was referring to some of his other statements regarding Ukraine, the usual “hopeful fantasies” about post-Maidan Ukraine. I don’t know enough about One Belt One Road to comment on it.

  77. @Beckow

    Poland wasn’t an oligarch controlled state. So EU transfers did some good.

    Ukraine’s is almost a failed state. The EU won’t give them more than a bare minimum to stave off collapse.

    They need to de-oligarchize. That won’t be easy, but it is a problem they can solve without depending on outsiders.

    At the moment, there seems to be no real effort to do this.

  78. AP says:
    @Beckow

    When you wrote this, which is mostly nonsense about Ukraine. It is typical Sovok wishful thinking:

    It is surviving, but it is still worse off than before Maidan.

    Depends on how one defines “worse off.” Areas not in the war zone have, on average, recovered. It’s no longer under a non-Ukrainian gangster-despot. Ties with the EU have improved and it is not locked out as it would have been. This is what most most Ukrainians wanted. So they now have not all, but much of what they wanted.

    Here is why they protested. The answers of central and western Ukrainians (the ones protesting) are the relevant ones:

    http://www.kiis.com.ua/?lang=ukr&cat=reports&id=231&page=1&y=2014&m=2

    Reasons, in order of popularity, for participation in Maidan:

    1. Overthrow corrupt Yanukovich regime. Done.

    2. Make Ukraine more like a normal Euro country. Getting there. A Yanukovich despotism is more like Turkemistan. Current rough democracy is more normal.

    3. To end police brutality. Done.

    4. Liberate Ukraine from Russia’s dictates. Done.

    5. Nationalism. Yes.

    So goals of protesters were mostly met.

    And it has no realistic path to EU (or Nato).

    Too early to tell, and too early to tell what EU will be like. Ties are closer to Poland.

    Maidan happened to make things better, to eliminate corruption, to get legal rights in EU, to increase living standards. None of that has happened

    See above for reasons.

    There is much more to do, but the goals have been accomplished.

    • Replies: @AnonFromTN
    , @Beckow
  79. @AP

    “Mission accomplished” sounds so familiar. Where could I have heard it already?

    • Replies: @AP
  80. @Hyperborean

    Well, in my experience, Chinese businessmen in Ukraine that I’ve known end up annoyingly identifying with the people there and do not appreciate my comments that it is a fake country. Osmosis is dangerous, I swear.

    Its mostly to setup for OBOR.

    • Replies: @AP
  81. Mr. Hack says:
    @LatW

    China is wisely flexing its reach and influence using the carrot instead of the stick (unlike what Russia often does). Indeed, its ‘bi-lateral’ and strategic approaches are becoming something to marvel at, almost enough to excuse its bizarre behavior in regards to the South China Sea’s islands?

    China is widening its reach around the world too. Were you aware that it fully funded and gifted a large and modern football stadium in San Jose, Costa Rica? Just a few short years back, it was to spearhead a project to create a second Panama canal within Nicaragua, ostensibly with Russian engineering and construction help too. You don’t hear much about it today, however….

  82. Beckow says:
    @Mr. Hack

    You seem quite simple. Have you seen a map? Before Ukraine, any Silk Road has to go through Russia. There are also two perfectly viable – and more convenient – routes: one through Russia and Baltic states, another through Turkey and Balkan.

    It is one thing to have gas, it is quite another to have the ability to deliver it to the consumer markets. Russia can do it, Central Asia only if Russia or Turkey/others cooperate. The logistics are complex and thus more expensive. Same for the US LNG gas.

    • Replies: @AP
  83. Mikhail says: • Website
    @Felix Keverich

    And how would you know what Putin needs? Did you get into his head?

    Putin needs this summit for the same reasons he needed World Cup and Sochi Olympics: he craves legitimacy that these big international events bring.

    Did you get into his head?

    The World Cup and Winter Olympics are truly international events, much unlike a one on one meeting with the US prez.

    https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2018/07/12/more-mumbo-jumbo-on-russia.html

    Excerpt –

    In a June 27 Brian Williams’ hosted MSNBC segment, McFaul suggested that Putin wins by default by just having a summit with Trump – as if the Russian leader is internationally ostracized, which is clearly not so. Actually, some are reasonably wondering if it’s really in Putin’s best interests to have the meeting, with the kind of anti-Russian and anti-Putin theatrics, that will be evident in the background (Washington Post, New York Times, CNN, MSNBC, et al). Trump’s mass media detractors have been constantly critical of his advocacy for improved US-Russian ties. To date, Trump has fallen short in achieving that desire.

    On the other hand, I sense Putin is looking to score some points with the at times brash manner of Fox News’ Chris Wallace – knowing that their exchange will get some high profile play.

    It could be argued that Trump might need this meeting more than Putin does.

  84. Mikhail says: • Website
    @Reg Cæsar

    No, but he might get a hotel or two out of it. “Jobs for the boys!”

    It has been said that Trump failed to secure a hotel/hotels in Russia, thereby that desire is overrated to completely non-existent.

  85. Mikhail says: • Website
    @Felix Keverich

    And how would you know what Putin needs? Did you get into his head?

    Putin needs this summit for the same reasons he needed World Cup and Sochi Olympics: he craves legitimacy that these big international events bring.

    Did you get into his head? The World Cup and Winter Olympics are truly international events – much different from a one on one with the US prez.

    https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2018/07/12/more-mumbo-jumbo-on-russia.html

    Excerpt –

    In a June 27 Brian Williams’ hosted MSNBC segment, McFaul suggested that Putin wins by default by just having a summit with Trump – as if the Russian leader is internationally ostracized, which is clearly not so. Actually, some are reasonably wondering if it’s really in Putin’s best interests to have the meeting, with the kind of anti-Russian and anti-Putin theatrics, that will be evident in the background (Washington Post, New York Times, CNN, MSNBC, et al). Trump’s mass media detractors have been constantly critical of his advocacy for improved US-Russian ties. To date, Trump has fallen short in achieving that desire.

    It could be argued that Trump needs the meeting more than Putin. On the other hand, Putin is probably looking forward to score some points in his scheduled exchange with Fox News’ Chris Wallace (who can be quite brash at times) – knowing that feature will carry some weight in the US.

    • Replies: @Felix Keverich
  86. AP says:
    @AnonFromTN

    I didn’t use those words. But thanks for playing.

  87. Beckow says:
    @AP

    Oh, boy, save yourself the preaching. I made a single point: Ukrainians living standards are worse than before Maidan. And they are, check any reputable source. That is all that matters.

    • Replies: @AP
    , @Philip Owen
  88. AP says:
    @Beckow

    There are also two perfectly viable – and more convenient – routes: one through Russia and Baltic states, another through Turkey and Balkan.

    Baltic states are Russia-friendly?

    Route through Turkey also goes through Iran, Tadzhikistan, etc. More convenient?

    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
    , @Beckow
  89. AP says:
    @Daniel Chieh

    Chinese businessmen in Ukraine that I’ve known end up annoyingly identifying with the people there and do not appreciate my comments that it is a fake country. Osmosis is dangerous, I swear..

    Not osmosis, they simply are not ignorant. You seem to think Ukraine is Russia’s Taiwan, or something.

    They probably also don’t think that it has become another Somalia or Libya, something some Sovoks and Russian nationalists actually believe.

  90. Mr. Hack says:
    @AP

    You seem to be using a straight edge better than Beckow. :-)

    You’ve located the ‘simpler‘ route too!

  91. Beckow says:
    @AP

    The route cannot go through Ukraine unless it first goes through Russia. Alternatives for Russia-Europe bypassing Ukraine:

    - Belarus-Poland (or Lithuania)
    - Russia – through St.Petersburg
    - Russia-Latvia/Estonia
    - Black See to Balkans

    Russia controls the route. If they see benefit in going through Ukraine, it will go there. If they don’t, they have the power to stop it, and neither Ukraine nor China can do anything about it.

    Do you guys know how to look at simple maps?

    • Replies: @AP
  92. AP says:
    @Beckow

    I made a single point: Ukrainians living standards are worse than before Maidan

    So you have reverted to being dishonest. You made several points. You made a claim of what Maidan was about and stated that it’s goals were not fulfilled. I corrected your false claims.

    As for “living standards” being worse than before Maidan, I have a hint for you: it’s not 2015 anymore. It isn’t so simple. Things are much, much worse in Donbas and this certainly brings down the average, but the rest of the country on average has more or less recovered to where it had been, with the Western parts doing better than before Maidan and the Eastern parts doing worse.

    Here is a chart showing poll results up to 2016:

    The same poll has results from May 2018:

    http://kiis.com.ua/?lang=eng&cat=reports&id=773&page=1

    With respect to info in the chart, in May 2018, 13.7% of Ukrainians struggled to afford food. In February 2012 it was 16.3% and in November 2013 it was 8.4%.

    To put these numbers in perspective, in 1998 it was 51.7% and after the 2008 crash it was 20.8%. In 2016 it was 18.5%. Russia was at 6% in 2017; it was at 13% in May 2005.

    So on this measure, Ukraine overall has recovered to where it was somewhere between February 2012 and November 2013.

    Taking into account Donbas collapse, this means the rest is probably close to where it was in 2013.

    Poll has other info. In terms of Index of individual Wellbeing (IIW) Ukraine has surpassed 2013. In two of the domains comprising this index, personal happiness and expectations about the future for the family, scores are the highest recorded. In terms of financial well-being of the family scores are lower than 2013 but about the same as 2012. People feel worse about the country than about their personal situations.

    Overall, the poll concludes : “Ukrainians are, on average, much more satisfied with their own lives than the life of the country (the index is higher by 52 points); over the past three years, the index of individual well-being has increased from -8 to +6 and now corresponds to the pre-war level of 2013.”

    • Replies: @Felix Keverich
  93. AP says:
    @Beckow

    The route cannot go through Ukraine unless it first goes through Russia.

    Did I state otherwise?

    Are you able to read?

    • Replies: @Beckow
  94. @Mikhail

    No, it will not. It will be heavily cut and edited, and accompanied by commentary that Putin is a murderer and lying dictator. I can’t imagine Western leaders giving interviews to Vesti Nedeli program, if only because these people are not suffering from inferiority complex.

    Do you even realise how lame it is, scheduling a summit with Trump to get some airtime on American television?

    • Replies: @Mikhail
  95. @LatW

    Personally, I don’t care if the Kiev government wants be pragmatic or not but then they shouldn’t turn this into ‘values’ thing.

    Considering how Mr. Hack has expressed his opinions about how racism is a bad thing, authortarianism is an unacceptable stage of affairs and that America is a positive force internationally, I feel that the sincerity of his morally evolved words have been lessened.

    Yes, the EU is great, but Ukraine is not in the EU.

    Doesn’t Kiev have at least nominal EU aspirations? The format is that countries are only allowed to accede to the EU once it has reformed along EU lines. Should Kiev abandon this aim?

    And, btw, didn’t you get the memo from Trump? It’s homo homini lupus now. We’re all “foes”, competitors and adversaries now.

    Does this mean Latvia will stop demanding solidarity from Germany and other West European countries in your feud with Russia?

    Do Western Europeans care about human rights in China when they do business with them? Did Sweden care about the dead Arab children when it was still selling weapons to the Saudis? Do as I say, not as I do, right?

    Again, I don’t care, but for people who loudly pride themselves on being morally evolved this should be a big black mark.

    Any more Lenins left to topple?

    I don’t really mind this, Lenin was an awful being whose ambitions led to misery to the Eurasian peoples for decades (then again why should one expect that a mushroom would care about his compatriots?).

    • Replies: @LatW
  96. JL says:
    @LatW

    Wasn’t it called “Euro Maidan” and sparked as a result of the decision to not sign the Association Agreement with the EU? Will there be a China Maidan if OBOR doesn’t work out? Because freedom.

  97. @AP

    AP, as usual you’re talking out of your ass, citing regime-controlled media to tell us, that the Ukraine is “doing fine”.

    How that does a country go from $180 million GDP in 2013 to $112 million GDP in 2017, and does not experience substantial loss in living standards? And I’m not even talking about the energy prices, which have risen dramatically in the Ukraine since 2013.

    The fact is that Ukrainians are refusing to have children ( http://www.ukrstat.gov.ua/operativ/operativ2018/ds/pp/pp_e/pp0418_e.html ), and emigrating en masse ( https://www.pravda.com.ua/rus/news/2018/02/28/7173045/ ), because the country is barely habitable right now.

    Stop lying to yourself that “this is fine”.

    • Replies: @Kimppis
    , @AP
  98. @LatW

    Hypothetically, if Russia ever wanted to incorporate Belarus – how would China react now that it has invested there?

    Probably with great happiness that an unstable place became more stable and predictable. Russia will not, of course, nationalize Chinese investments, but will greatly reduce risks connected with possible ‘regime change’ and other such instabilities. Seems like a win-win situation for China.

    • Replies: @Hyperborean
    , @Philip Owen
  99. @LatW

    other than that, the decommunization in Ukraine itself is proceeding nicely

    One should start with undoing the horrible legacies of holodomorist Stalinism and give back Galicia to Poland.

    They wanted to join Europe anyways, didn’t they?

  100. @anonymous coward

    Although their relationship with Russia is more important than various small countries, the Chinese government seems to dislike formal legal border changes. The Kremlin should probably consult with Zhongnanhai on their position on any future Russian active actions.

    • Replies: @anonymous coward
  101. utu says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    Could anybody explain what is the big deal with the One Belt One Road? It is just a railroad. The railroads already exist. Yes, you can add extra tracks or make them better but the question is whether the existing railways limit transfer of goods from China to Europe? I doubt that the existing infrastructure is completely utilized. Building a railroad is not is not that hard. And it can be done fast. In 1886 on May 31 11,500 miles of railway had gauge changed in 36 hours in Southern states. This require moving one rails only but this illustrates how one can mobilize and overcome all logistical problems when there is need and will.

    http://southern.railfan.net/ties/1966/66-8/gauge.html

  102. Mitleser says:
    @utu

    OBOR/BRI is not just a railroad.
    It is a brand.

    I doubt that the existing infrastructure is completely utilized.

    Polish infrastructure is struggeling to keep up.

    Rail shipments have experienced delays of over ten days at land ports in both Europe and China, bogged down by insufficient infrastructure and paperwork pileups, shippers say. That congestion is anticipated to worsen as Chinese authorities encourage a further ramp up in volumes.

    The situation illustrates how China’s Belt and Road initiative is delivering some successes but also how its partners are struggling to keep up.

    https://de.reuters.com/article/uk-china-europe-silkroad-insight/in-europes-east-a-border-town-strains-under-chinas-silk-road-train-boom-idUKKBN1JM36M

    • Replies: @Philip Owen
  103. Mitleser says:

    You know what you have to do China, Iran, all your neighbour countries.

  104. Kimppis says:
    @Felix Keverich

    Ukraine hasn’t been doing “fine” since 1991, so it actually isn’t much of an achievement to recover back to those levels.

    Also, it seems you’re using nominal GDP. Ukraine is probably quite a bit more import dependent than Russia, but it’s still a very misleading metric. (People. Don’t. Use. Nominal. GDP. When. You. Measure. “Non-Western.” Living. Standards. Few things trigger me as much… this is the ultimate level of autism.)

    Did Russia collapse after the devaluation? Did it “experience substantial loss in living standards”? No, as much as Western propagandists would like that to be the case. Are Brazilian and Mexican living standards currently higher or atleast comparable to those in Russia? No and no.

    Atleast we can try to be as “objective” as possible. Ukraine is as close to Ghana as Russia is to… I don’t know, Equatorial Guinea? I don’t want to go down to the level of Western MSM’s Russia coverage. We should all be better than that.

    (This comment really reminds me how bad things have gotten and how good this blog and its comment section is. I’m almost “defending” Ukraine… What a world.)

    • Agree: AP, Anatoly Karlin
    • Replies: @Felix Keverich
  105. WHAT says:
    @Felix Keverich

    Lol what. In this particular meeting, Trump is the inferior one. Putin, for all his many faults, has consolidated control, and is not hounded by his own media and judiciary. Nor did he publicly shame his lackeys without any practical sense behind it like Donald did the whole week.

  106. @Anatoly Karlin

    Thank you for the summaries. I am going to read your 2015 article (haven’t found the time since yesterday unfortunately).

    I however already started to look at AE’s blog and, quite timely, saw the latest post:

    http://anepigone.blogspot.com/2018/07/galless-gauls.html

    which is EXACTLY what I was telling my teenagers would happen, two days ago: (1) a massive propaganda push for the vibrants and (2) riots all over France.

    If one person in my wife’s family even remotely appears to rejoice of “their” team’s victory I think it is going to be extremely difficult for me to refrain from telling them they’re idiots.

  107. Mikhail says: • Website
    @Felix Keverich

    Less lame than your thought on why Putin needs the summit, thereby supporting my contention that Putin doesn’t really need this summit – in correct contradiction to what you initially said on this matter.

    Let’s see just how heavily edited it’ll be. Fox News has Tucker Carlson. On the one hand, most of the Trump supporters aren’t so gung ho on Russia. On the other hand, they don’t like the Dems, in conjunction with the former’sgeneral support of Trump.

  108. AP says:
    @Felix Keverich

    How that does a country go from $180 million GDP in 2013 to $112 million GDP in 2017 and does not experience substantial loss in living standards

    If you were honest to yourself and others you wouldn’t have to resort to nominal GDP (which reflects currency devaluation) to make your “point.” That you had to do so proves that yours is a failed claim.

    Russia’s nominal GDP went from 2.3 trillion dollars in 2013 to 1.28 trillion dollars in 2016:

    https://tradingeconomics.com/russia/gdp

    By such an “argument” Russia must have seen a collapse its living standards.

    Congratulations, you have made claims about Ukraine that are as dumb as those about Russia.

    The fact is that Ukrainians are refusing to have children

    Large numbers are working abroad, yet birth rate is still better than it was 10 years ago. And higher than it was in Russia 10 years ago.

    Was Russia not habitable in 2008? Think hard.

    and emigrating en masse

    Let me guess: you must think that the large number of Poles working in Germany, UK etc. mean that Poland is barely habitable right now.

    If Kaliningrad or other Russian oblasts close to the EU suddenly had ability to travel and work without visas in Germany, how many people form those regions do you think would look for work in Germany, Finland, etc?

    • Replies: @Philip Owen
  109. The Donbass is a cost to Russia with no pluses. If Trump can give Putin a face saving way out, that could be a deal.

    Missile treaties are good boiler plate PR.

    A joint code of practice on cyber warfare is probably a win-win both sides.

    The US has an all time low area dedicated to wheat. Russia is at an all time high. Keeping food prices down will help Trump.

  110. @AP

    Russia did see a collapse in its living standards. Inflation surged. Households are about 25% poorer and this is continuing albeit at a slower pace.

    • Replies: @Kimppis
  111. @Mr. XYZ

    A customs blockade is a carrot. There were no carrots at the time. Did the gas price rop? It was why Ukraine was trying to develop a negotiating lever by talking to the EU. The $3Bn didn’t turn up as an offer until the blockade failed due to reactance. The Russian attitude to Yanukovich was that he was there man bought and paid for. He was there to serve Moscow not ask for aid.

  112. @Mr. Hack

    China has big projects n Ukraine. Huge farming projects and a backdoor port to Europe. Also purchase of weapons as mentioned elsewhere. China can lend Ukraine money for an infrastructure project or too. This was the plot in Russia. Swop currencies then build a high speed railway paid in Yuan to build up Russian debt. This is how things work in Africa. Russia saw this and the associated corruption and Siemens is now back as front runner for building railways.

  113. @Beckow

    British living standards are barely those of 2007.

  114. @anonymous coward

    Russia is no more predicatable than Belarus. Once Putin goes all kinds of power struggles will be unleashed.

    • Replies: @anonymous coward
  115. Kimppis says:
    @Philip Owen

    What? In dollars?

    Real incomes are quite rapidly recovering this year, I think they forecast a growth of around 6% 2018.

    • Replies: @Philip Owen
  116. @Mitleser

    Exports from Russia to China meet similar problems. It used to be coal. Now its wheat.

    Not enough wagons. Russian is short 7000 wheat wagons even without greater export volumes.

    Poor infrastructure (gauge changes, not enough sidings, single track sections), massive paperwork and few language skills.

  117. @Philip Owen

    The US has an all time low area dedicated to wheat. Russia is at an all time high. Keeping food prices down will help Trump.

    I see the US-China trade war as a possible upside for Trump on this front.

    Next year many of the acres currently planted with soybeans will be planted with corn (maize for you foreigners) instead.

    This should cause prices for meat and eggs to drop.

    Farmers are only seven-tenths of one percent of the US labor force, so I doubt the decline in farm income will be a serious political problem for the Republican Party.

  118. Kimppis says:

    I don’t know much about Twitter, but #TreasonSummit is actually trending… Nothing surprises me at this point, but this timeline really is weird.

    • Replies: @Hyperborean
    , @notanon
  119. @Kimppis

    No roubles over a three year period. inflation is now under control thanks to high interest rates.

  120. @Kimppis

    The New York Times has become acquainted with alliteration:

    Trump, Treasonous Traitor

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/15/opinion/trump-russia-investigation-putin.html

    The guy is really obsessed; so many of his articles are all about Trump and his name and orange-hued face that one has to wonder if that is all he thinks about.

  121. @Kimppis

    People. Don’t. Use. Nominal. GDP. When. You. Measure. “Non-Western.” Living. Standards.

    Define “non-western living standard”. In India they still defecate in the streets in many places. I’m not sure how this factors into Indian GDP figures, but I can guarantee you wouldn’t want to live in this “standard”. Neither would AP for that matter – he does not want to live in the Ukraine.

    PPP is a useful metric, but not the most objective actually, as it assumes that quality of goods and services is identical in America and the Ukraine. And it’s not like the Ukraine has well-developed domestic industries, that could replace imported goods – it’s in far worse position, than Russia in this regard. Their standard of living thus took qualitative as well quantitative hit in 2014-2015.

    • Replies: @Kimppis
  122. LatW says:
    @Hyperborean

    Should Kiev abandon this aim?

    No, but Ukraine should prioritize its own needs at the moment. No need to jump through hoops or abandon lucrative relationships with third countries unless there is something tangible there.

    Ukraine is in some ways more free than the West. Out of the two Maidan values – Patria et Libertas – Ukraine should prioritize the Patria right now.

    Yes, communism is awful, but, as I said, it is disingenuous and hypocritical of any Westerner to try to hold Ukraine to a higher standard when they themselves cooperate with China. And other authoritarian states.

    Does this mean Latvia will stop demanding solidarity from Germany and other West European countries in your feud with Russia?

    You know, it’s not like the West hasn’t had any or still doesn’t have any “demands”.

    then again why should one expect that a mushroom would care about his compatriots?

    What the heck is a “mushroom”? Yes, 27 years since 1991, they are removing Lenin statues. Sometimes they do it in the dead of the night (hilarious and exciting!) and sometimes it is accompanied by brawls.

  123. LatW says:

    Don’t forget the “grey”, or I’d call it cash economy, the percentage might still be high (10-15%?), so there’s probably a bit more cash circulating around than what is reported in the stats.

  124. Kimppis says:
    @Felix Keverich

    By that I meant countries with considerably higher PPP GDP than nominal.

    And no, I certainly wouldn’t like to live in Ukraine, but I’d rather live there than in any “third world” Sub-Saharan shithole with a similar nominal GDP per capita.

    Fair enough, I don’t disagree with you on that. The point was just that nominal GDP is misleading, even when it comes to Ukraine.

    • Replies: @Felix Keverich
  125. notanon says:
    @Kimppis

    twitter boosts hashtags they agree with and suppresses ones they don’t

    if Trump forces social media to abide by the 1A he’s a shoe-in for 2020 cos his supporters are so much better at it than the opposition

  126. Yes, communism is awful, but, as I said, it is disingenuous and hypocritical of any Westerner to try to hold Ukraine to a higher standard when they themselves cooperate with China. And other authoritarian states.

    I don’t disagree with this but this doesn’t Ukrainians shouldn’t adopt the same kind of hypocritical actions.

    I wonder, do you consider me a Westerner?

    You know, it’s not like the West hasn’t had any or still doesn’t have any “demands”.

    But you said:

    And, btw, didn’t you get the memo from Trump? It’s homo homini lupus now. We’re all “foes”, competitors and adversaries now.

    So by your mindset, why shouldn’t Eastern Europeans get screwed over?

    What the heck is a “mushroom”? Yes, 27 years since 1991, they are removing Lenin statues. Sometimes they do it in the dead of the night (hilarious and exciting!) and sometimes it is accompanied by brawls.

    It was a joke: https://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/lenin-mushroom-hoax-russia

    By the way how many statues are left in Latvia, have they all been torn down or are there still some left?

    Apologies if this gets double posted.

    • Replies: @LatW
  127. @Kimppis

    It isn’t misleading. Ukrainians are indeed desperately poor. And much poorer, than they were before the Maidan. The country doesn’t have much in the way of manufacturing economy, and that means when its currency crashes, standard of living crashes. For example, new car sales in the Ukraine used to be around 200.000 per year before the Maidan. It’s 80.000 now because the only cars you can buy in the Ukraine are foreign-made. Ukrainian clothing is crap, and Ukrainian medicine and even Ukrainian food could be hazardous for your health. This is what PPP-comparisons are missing, they just assume this stuff is the same quality everywhere.

    Speaking of Trump-Putin summit, I feel that Trump will have to impose new sanctions just to prove that he wasn’t “dominated” by Putin.

    • Replies: @AP
  128. • Replies: @Mikhail
    , @notanon
  129. LatW says:
    @Hyperborean

    I don’t disagree with this but this doesn’t Ukrainians shouldn’t adopt the same kind of hypocritical actions.

    Ukraine doesn’t owe it to anyone to be or act a certain way.

    So by your mindset, why shouldn’t Eastern Europeans get screwed over?

    I forgot what the original thread was, but my point was that if you destroy the international order, you can’t blame mid-size states if they go rogue. I hope they do.

    I wonder, do you consider me a Westerner?

    I didn’t mean you personally.

    By the way how many statues are left in Latvia, have they all been torn down or are there still some left?

    I haven’t seen. I remember talking to someone from either Belarus or Ukraine, way back in the early or mid 2000s, a young guy, and he at one point said to me: “I always say to my friends, the Balts did the right thing – they removed all the Lenin statues right away but we still have them.” I was very naive at the time, I looked at him all baffled: “What do you mean, they’re still there?” I wonder how he’s doing today (I can’t find his email anymore and regret not having cultivated that relationship).

    The mushroom thing is the weirdest thing ever, I don’t recall anything like that.

    • Replies: @Hyperborean
  130. @utu

    Traditionally, most Polish trade is oriented to the West. That’s why Western Poland is more developed. When the German car makers invested, they wanted locations close to the German border for obvious reasons. When their supply chain companies followed, the effect was compounded. Hence the ‘invest in Eastern Poland’ ad campaign, which aside from being an unintentional meme, has not had much real success.

    The rise of China, and later on, the rise of India, will re-balance the geography of trade and will provide impetus to faster development and infrastructure of neglected regions.

    The Reuters article on the Polish eastern border towns have already been posted, but it deserves to be quoted in length.

    The rail network handled 3,673 train trips between China and Europe in 2017, up from 1,702 in 2016 and just 17 in 2011, according to China Railway, the national operator.

    While congestion occurs across the network, much of the shippers’ frustrations are being directed at Malaszewicze, which handles roughly 90 percent of the cargo.

    There, containers which travel from China through Kazakhstan, Russia and Belarus on Russian gauge tracks are transferred to other trains running on European standard ones.

    The land port processed nearly 74,000 containers in 2017, four times the volume it handled in 2015, earning Poland nearly 400 million zlotys (£82.4 million) in tax and customs revenues last year, Polish tax and customs authorities said.

    In short, the growth for a very small village has been absolutely bonkers. Poland is a much more trade-oriented country than Russia (as evidenced by exports to GDP ratio), so I don’t buy Philip Owen’s lazy comparison with Russia.

    The problem is that there has been a huge explosion all concentrated in a small choke point in a very neglected part of Poland, and all of it happened in the span of a few short years. That the place didn’t collapse is a minor miracle itself. But the article goes on to say that the network line is still unprofitable. So there is still more to be done. Maybe some Chinese gentlemen finally saw the light in one of those airports all those years ago when faced with the ad campaign /s

    • Replies: @utu
    , @Mitleser
  131. Is Trump under the control of Yuri??

  132. Mikhail says: • Website
    @Thorfinnsson

    Pretty rich coming from a bigoted liar, who once went with the CPUSA.

    On par with Clapper.

  133. utu says:
    @Polish Perspective

    3,673 train trips between China and Europe

    This is 10 trains per day. Switch to a different gauge can be challenge. But Poland has several railway crossings with Belarus and Ukraine. It does not have to be one crossing. Poland should not be a bottleneck. I suspect that the bottleneck will be the current infrastructure in China and Russia Far East.

  134. utu says:
    @for-the-record

    Wow, one would think they all gone mad but the truth is that this is all orchestrated. They even use the same phrases:

    This are headlines in Daily Mail:

    John McCain calls Trump’s press conference with Putin ‘one of the most disgraceful performances by an American president in memory’

    ‘You have been watching one of the most disgraceful performances by an American president I have ever seen’: Anderson Cooper eviscerates Trump

  135. @Philip Owen

    The Donbass is a cost to Russia with no pluses. If Trump can give Putin a face saving way out, that could be a deal.

    Nonsense.

    1. It is a very minor cost – approximately $1 billion per year.

    2. It’s not in Trump’s power to give.

    3. Any Russian withdrawal from the Donbass will be as interpreted (correctly) as a Russian defeat by, well, everyone. Not a good idea when Putin’s approval rating has just taken a 15% point hit from the pensions reform.

  136. @utu

    If I recall that article correctly, paperwork was a bottleneck. Basically beyond the technical challenges, there’s an entire level of infrastructure challenge on the soft elements and it hasn’t been ready for this degree of volume; traffic has been diverted and ended up going to Finland and Estonia in the meanwhile.

    • Replies: @utu
  137. @utu

    They really need to learn how to “paraphase” rather than “parrot” when they get these orders.

    • Replies: @utu
  138. @utu

    Wow, one would think they all gone mad but the truth is that this is all orchestrated.

    Nonetheless, they have all truly gone mad.

    • Replies: @utu
  139. AP says:
    @Felix Keverich

    Typical; cluelessness about Ukraine. From one of the resident clueless people. You have actually compared Ukraine to sub-Saharan Africa :-)

    The country doesn’t have much in the way of manufacturing economy

    Ukraine has about the same mix of agriculture, manufacturing, and service as Argentina.

    Manufacturing is up:

    https://tradingeconomics.com/ukraine/manufacturing-production

    and that means when its currency crashes, standard of living crashes. For example, new car sales in the Ukraine used to be around 200.000 per year before the Maidan. It’s 80.000 now because the only cars you can buy in the Ukraine are foreign-made.

    Car sales are uniquely affected by the currency devaluation because cars are very expensive, not particularly necessary, and foreign-made.

    Ukraine makes its own clothes, food, furniture, medicine, and construction material. Ukraine also makes household appliances (refrigerators, etc.). Currency collapse has been good for some domestic industry:

    https://open4business.com.ua/household-appliances-producer-ktd-group-will-launch-refrigerator-plant-ukraine-cherkasy-region/

    Ukrainian firm recently opened a new plant in Cherkassy, making refrigerators.

    Ukrainian clothing is crap

    And in Felix’s world, Ukraine is like sub-Saharan Africa.

    Vogue had a thing for Ukrainian-made clothes:

    https://www.vogue.com/article/made-in-ukraine-designers-fashion

    Ukrainian medicine and even Ukrainian food could be hazardous for your health.

    Lviv restaurants are no worse than Moscow restaurants but much cheaper. Polish tourists also love food in Ukraine. Good beers and cognac also.

    I haven’t used Ukrainian medicine.

    In general, your “arguments” mirror the same one that Western Russophobes say about Russia.

    This is what PPP-comparisons are missing, they just assume this stuff is the same quality everywhere.

    Food in Ukraine is certainly tastier as well as cheaper than food in the West. The strawberries are incredible (same as in Russia), bread is very good, etc.

  140. @LatW

    Ukraine doesn’t owe it to anyone to be or act a certain way.

    That is fine, then I just won’t take their rhetoric about European Values or the tragedy of Russian un-democracy seriously. My objections are more about Mr. Hack who suddenly seems to have made a volte-face and become an amoral pragmatist.

    I forgot what the original thread was, but my point was that if you destroy the international order, you can’t blame mid-size states if they go rogue. I hope they do.

    That is fine, but then it seems like they are reading from the wrong book if they want to preach from the sky while squatting on the ground.

    I didn’t mean you personally

    So why did you bring up Western hypocrisy again? I already said I consider it a big black mark for them.

  141. @utu

    This is 10 trains per day. Switch to a different gauge can be challenge.

    Sometimes the absolute volume in of itself isn’t always the problem, but the velocity of change.

    Going from 17 trains in a single year to over 3673 in a matter of six years is a massive increase, especially as nobody could have foreseen it rationally in 2011 or even after OBOR was announced (plenty of grand plans are announced, the follow-through is another matter).

    But Poland has several railway crossings with Belarus and Ukraine. It does not have to be one crossing.

    I will confess to my ignorance when it comes to Eastern Poland’s geography and raillines at the outset, however my instinct is to believe that isn’t quite as simple as that.

    If there was an easy parallel substitute on the Polish-Belarussian or Polish-Ukrainian border, it would have been used already a long time ago due to geographical proximity and speed. Re-routing to the Baltics is too cumbersome unless there are a series of costs. Paperwork may be some of it, but I doubt it is all of it. If it was just paperwork, then there is no reason why the traffic wouldn’t be split along several lines equally even if all crossings had logistical problems due to the massive and sudden surge over the past few years.

    But as the article states: it is over 90% in that single location, so there are likely significantly more factors at play here than just paperwork and I don’t think it is forgetfulness/sloppiness either. Way too much money is on the line. There is likely some complexity here which the article doesn’t delve into and which frankly neither of us are knowledgeable enough to opine on. You’d probably have to probe some local official involved in the area or some exporter who ships stuff through that route to get a good handle on it.

  142. LatW says:

    That is fine, then I just won’t take their rhetoric about European Values or the tragedy of Russian un-democracy seriously

    Oh, that’s not there to impress you. That’s just because they genuinely do not wish to live under a Kadyrov.

  143. Beckow says:
    @AP

    You tendency for ad hominem attacks is unhelpful.

    Did I state otherwise?

    Since you ask: yes, you did. You have tried to suggest that Ukraine is somehow well positioned to be on the ‘Silk Road’ from China to Europe. I, and others, pointed out to you and Mr. Hack that it almost entirely depends on Russia’s good will.

    You do the same argument by chaos with the simple fact of the Ukrainian living standards. Polls and surveys are not living standards. And I am skeptical about any data coming from institutions that have a political agenda.

    The facts are that Ukraine’s GNP is substantially below where it was in 2014. Its exports are down, production is down, value of Ukrainian currency is way down. Down, down, down. The population has also dropped with a few million moving to EU and Russia. Per capita income is lower than in 2014.

    Maidan had as its primary goal an increase in living standard. Yes, there were other goals, but without improving living standards they are unimportant. Since Maidan has failed to improve living standards, it has failed so far. Maybe it has worked for some in Western Ukraine, or the people who managd to escape to EU, or the people with government jobs in Kiev – but overall Maidan has failed.

    Failed revolutions – in Ukraine so far two in a row – have consequences.

    • Replies: @AP
  144. utu says:
    @Daniel Chieh

    Do not look for excuses for the idiots.

    During communism there was one railway company in Poland. Now they have many of them. One of the greatest post-communist thievery and infrastructure destruction in the name of neo-liberalism. One company owns the left hand side rail and one company owns the right hand side rail… One company owns stations and one company owns wagons and another locomotives and still another repair shops. This was all necessary to create many management sinecures for former and new nomenklatura.

    Poland has Russian gauge railway going where they used to bring iron ore to steel mills in Silesia. So they do not have to stop at the border. One could do switching to European gauge along the line and merge them into regular lines. Trains could go one every several minutes. 50 or 100 trains per day just on one line.

    In 1886 on May 31 11,500 miles of railway had gauge changed in 36 hours in Southern states. This require moving one rails only but this illustrates how one can mobilize and overcome all logistical problems when there is need and will.

    http://southern.railfan.net/ties/1966/66-8/gauge.html

    The reason there are problems is simple: there is no political will plus the usual indolence and ineptitude and thievery.

  145. notanon says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    i thought Helsinki would be important (eastern Syria) but only behind the scenes

    but it now looks like Trump may have finally started his grand offensive.

    assassination or deep state btfo incoming?

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  146. AP says:
    @Beckow

    You tendency for ad hominem attacks is unhelpful.

    Did you not write, above, “Do you guys know how to look at simple maps?”

    So you are a hypocrite as well as a liar.

    And these are factual descriptions of you, not mere insults. See below:

    Did I state otherwise?

    Since you ask: yes, you did.

    No I did not. And you have failed to back up your lie with evidence that I did.

    You have tried to suggest that Ukraine is somehow well positioned to be on the ‘Silk Road’ from China to Europe.

    So the liar has gone from I “stated” to I “tried to suggest.”

    I suggested no such thing. I wrote:

    “Baltic states are Russia-friendly?

    Route through Turkey also goes through Iran, Tadzhikistan, etc. More convenient?”

    You are now making things up.

    Maidan had as its primary goal an increase in living standard.

    Nonsense. People participating in Maidan and supporting it were polled. Number one reason was to get rid of Yanukovich regime. Since you did not even participate in Maidan whatever you think it’s goals were or should have been is irrelevant.

    And I am skeptical about any data coming from institutions that have a political agenda.

    Same data source shows very bad situation in 2014-2015. No political agenda then? Or maybe it is just inconvenient for you now, because you pretend it is always 2015 in Ukraine.

    The facts are that Ukraine’s GNP is substantially below where it was in 2014

    Nominal only. By that metric Russia’s seizure of Crimea was a failure because of the hit Russia took to its own nomianal; GNP.

    GDP PPP is about the same as in 2013, only slightly lower. Which means that outside of Donbas (where due to war decline has been extreme) it is the same.

    Its exports are down

    Not from the same places that were part of Ukraine in 2013 and 2018. About 25% of Ukraine’s exports came from Donbas (steel). Some small % also came from Crimea. Ukraine’s exports are now about 70% of what they were in 2013. This is exports of goods. Ukraine’s growing IT services industry compensates for the small difference. This means that Donbass-less Ukraine exports about as much now as it did in 2013.

    production is down

    Production was actually declining even before Maidan. In Donbassless Ukraine, new factories are being built all over the place. It’s probably at least as high now as it was then.

    Maybe it has worked for some in Western Ukraine, or the people who managd to escape to EU, or the people with government jobs in Kiev

    By 2018 GRP in most of Ukraine is as it was in 2013, or better.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  147. @notanon

    Frankly I’m surprised he’s still alive. Probably helps that Trump kept some of his personal bodyguards, and no doubt his relationship with Roger Stone (who wrote a book about LBJ having Kennedy whacked) is useful.

    Then again the Dweeb State isn’t exactly full of A-list talent these days to judge by Peter Strzok’s hearing.

    • Replies: @notanon
    , @LondonBob
  148. Beckow says:
    @AP

    Desperate, desperate. So ‘about the same‘, only ‘slightly lower‘, exports down by 30% – but that is ok…

    You are not helping with rational analysis: your attempt to paint a rosy picture is desperate. I talk to Ukrainians (in Europe) all the time, they all say that the situation back home is very bad, they don’t plan to go back, east, west, Subcarpathia, Kharkiv, Odessa, Lviv,… nobody except you and Mr. Hack seems to think that the economy there is good. If it is good why have millions left?

    If I mixed up what you said vs. what your ally Mr. Hack said, well, that happens, I responded to arguments from your side, you generally agreed with each other.

    Simple question: given what we saw today in Helsinki, who is going to provide additional – desperately needed – aid to Ukraine? US is out, EU is not interested, and China doesn’t give anything for free. Who is going to provide aid, especially as the transit fees disappear? Maybe Poland will take it on?

    • Replies: @AP
    , @Mr. Hack
    , @AP
  149. @Thorfinnsson

    There is, I believe, in what we call “social democracy”, the underlying egalitarian traits of our ancestors, which proved so successful in homogenous, high-trust, and on average intelligent societies. A functional family is a communist entity — and a good one, one that must be promoted. I think it is entirely fine to extend in concentric circles, with decreasing level of obligations (i.e., “duty of state” in Catholic moral theology), to the extended family, the parish/village, the diocese/county, all the way up to the nation. But of course the “duty of state” applies also to those on the receiving end, meaning that freeloading is heavily discouraged and possibly even punished. Of course of all that breaks down when faced with inter-race realities. But my point is that I don’t mind charity to my next-of-kin. But I don’t have any obligation vis-à-vis the little negro kids of Africa, whatever fake pope Frankie might say to that effect.

    Speaking of which — Martin Luther. Yes, he can take some blame. But there had been so many abuses in the renaissance Roman church. In the end I think the protestant innovations all stem from the Roman innovative mindset — which has lead me to Eastern Orthodoxy.

    The Jews have made things much worse, but nearly all destructive liberal ideas were invented by Anglos themselves.

    As much as I like to blame the Anglos just for fun, I recognize their impressive contributions to the advancement of mankind. I think there are many things we cannot blame them for. Take Freudianism for example: it’s hard to blame that on the Anglos, and yet this intellectual fraud has proven extremely effective in destroying traditional morality, in the Anglo world in particular but certainly not only. Western Europe has been ravaged by it too. And how about Marxism, which seems to be the official dogma (in its “Cultural” variety) of humanities colleges in the USA and Western Europe nowadays. It’s completely Talmudic in its very essence. But maybe you means Liberalism itself; in which case we French or Francophones must take our share of responsibility: we were blaming Luther earlier, but how about Calvin (whose prose, by the way, is IMO at the apex of French literary style)?

    The United States is powerful simply because of its population and resources. No matter what the political and ideological system unified Americans are fated to be powerful.

    Certainly. But it did not work out that well in the Southern part of the continent, did it? But the general configuration of South America is very different from the Northern part (Amazonia, Andes, etc.), maybe that’s why. That’s also one of the questions that keep puzzling me. Cortez seemed to have gotten a good start, but there were too many Mesos left, that’s probably why South America failed in the end.

    Well, glad I did more than help some people make some money down the road. What were you searching for?

    I like internal combustion engines and I hate electric vehicles because there are sold to the general populace through a despicable lie, the so-called “green” one. While I think that electrical vehicles make sense for the centralized governments because they will allow for tighter control of the population (one cannot store electricity, unlike diesel fuel for instance if one keeps it in appropriate storage containers, etc.). I have been convinced for some time, but based on intuition more than thorough research because of lack of time mostly, that Tesla is a fraud — at least the car-making side of things. When I got started on some contrarian research, I landed here. I hope your analysis is correct because I would hate to see Tesla succeed.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
    , @utu
  150. @utu

    Interesting article about the gauge change. I had no idea about this impressive feat. Thank you.

  151. AP says:
    @Beckow

    Desperate, desperate. So ‘about the same‘, only ‘slightly lower‘, exports down by 30% – but that is ok…

    Let me repeat to you -

    Ukraine no longer has territory that was responsible for 25% of exports of goods- Donbas.

    I don’t know how much Crimea exported. 2% perhaps?

    Since exports of goods from Ukraine within its current borders are down 30% – little has changed. When you add increase in export of services it evens out.

    Do you really not understand, or are you being dishonest as usual and feigning.

    I talk to Ukrainians (in Europe) all the time

    So you claim. You aren’t an honest person, as anyone can see by following the discussion.

    Most people who leave do so for a few months, and come back. You claim to speak to people who have chosen to settle permanently. Maybe their opinions are not so representative?

    nobody except you

    Nobody except me has actually been to Ukraine recently. When poll numbers match what I observed, you claim polls are political and fake. When economic data match what I state, you pretend that you don’t understand them.

    If it is good why have millions left

    Millions have also left Poland. Are you going to claim that it is terrible there, because people take advantage of the opportunity to earn 4x the income somewhere else?

    Simple question: given what we saw today in Helsinki, who is going to provide additional – desperately needed – aid to Ukraine?

    I don’t know. Ukraine paid more than it took in this year, and is stable.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  152. @Guillaume Tell

    There is, I believe, in what we call “social democracy”, the underlying egalitarian traits of our ancestors, which proved so successful in homogenous, high-trust, and on average intelligent societies. A functional family is a communist entity — and a good one, one that must be promoted. I think it is entirely fine to extend in concentric circles, with decreasing level of obligations (i.e., “duty of state” in Catholic moral theology), to the extended family, the parish/village, the diocese/county, all the way up to the nation. But of course the “duty of state” applies also to those on the receiving end, meaning that freeloading is heavily discouraged and possibly even punished. Of course of all that breaks down when faced with inter-race realities. But my point is that I don’t mind charity to my next-of-kin. But I don’t have any obligation vis-à-vis the little negro kids of Africa, whatever fake pope Frankie might say to that effect.

    Nassim Taleb likes to state that his politics differ based on scale. He claims to be:

    Federal level–Libertarian
    State level–Republican
    Local level–Democrat
    Family level–Socialist

    I don’t entirely agree (Taleb has apparently not noticed massively corrupt urban Democratic machines in America) but it’s a good way of thinking about things.

    The German concept of the “Social Market” is not bad. Capitalism, discipline, efficiency, and private enterprise. But also powerful labor unions as a check on capitalist greed and universal social insurance (with skin in the game) to insulate ordinary workers from the business cycle, illness, and old age.

    The issues with Social Democracy are the punitive taxation rates, benefits for parasites, hordes of government bureaucrats, and of course thinking that benign intentions matter more than outcomes.

    Speaking of which — Martin Luther. Yes, he can take some blame. But there had been so many abuses in the renaissance Roman church. In the end I think the protestant innovations all stem from the Roman innovative mindset — which has lead me to Eastern Orthodoxy.

    The issue with Protestantism is that by stressing a personal relationship with God that people begin to question everything and start applying the Bible (and ultimately other things) in novel ways. It’s not surprising that later in life Luther himself endorsed burning heretics and allied with the Princes.

    The problem was solved on the Continent by putting the state in charge of the church, but the problem continued to fester in England with its nonconformists. Then of course a ship full of post-millenarian religious fanatics departed England for the New World to land at Plymouth Rock. The rest, as they say, is history.

    Republicanism presents the exact same sort of problem.

    As much as I like to blame the Anglos just for fun, I recognize their impressive contributions to the advancement of mankind. I think there are many things we cannot blame them for. Take Freudianism for example: it’s hard to blame that on the Anglos, and yet this intellectual fraud has proven extremely effective in destroying traditional morality, in the Anglo world in particular but certainly not only. Western Europe has been ravaged by it too. And how about Marxism, which seems to be the official dogma (in its “Cultural” variety) of humanities colleges in the USA and Western Europe nowadays. It’s completely Talmudic in its very essence. But maybe you means Liberalism itself; in which case we French or Francophones must take our share of responsibility: we were blaming Luther earlier, but how about Calvin (whose prose, by the way, is IMO at the apex of French literary style)?

    In fact it was the Anglos, with their commitment to empiricism, who invented scientific psychology. William James.

    In fairness to the Jews quite a number of them were involved in dismantling Freudianism, most notably Karl Popper.

    I’ve started using the term bioleninism over the unwieldy term “Cultural Marxism”. It was invented by the blogger Spandrell, an American who is learned Far East Hand. His blog can be found here: https://bloodyshovel.wordpress.com/

    Liberalism has degenerated into bioleninism, but it was frankly flawed from the very beginning. The Declaration of Independence is a pack of lies and The Rights of Man is pagan nonsense not even fit for use as toilet paper.

    I don’t know much about Calvin, but Calvinist denominations which still practice Calvinist theology (i.e. the modern Presbyterian Church doesn’t count) seem to be very healthy demographically and psychologically. Certainly Calvinism sustained the Afrikaners well through centuries of struggle against nature, the hottentots, the Zulus, the British Empire, and finally the entire world. If not for Anglo voters the Conservative Party (KP) would’ve taken over the government and there would still be a volkstaat in Pretoria today.

    Certainly. But it did not work out that well in the Southern part of the continent, did it? But the general configuration of South America is very different from the Northern part (Amazonia, Andes, etc.), maybe that’s why. That’s also one of the questions that keep puzzling me. Cortez seemed to have gotten a good start, but there were too many Mesos left, that’s probably why South America failed in the end.

    Spaniards and Portuguese are plainly inferior to Anglos, and widespread miscegenation did the rest. Not much of a mystery.

    The Puritans arrived as in tact families, and the ambitious planters who settled Virginia and the Carolinas imported wives from Barbados and England rather then reduce themselves to taking Indian wives (John Smith aside).

    Quebec is successful as well thanks to Louis XIV wisely sending French brides to the rough trappers, fur traders, explorers, and soldiers living there. The first white men to explore the part of the United States I live in were Frenchmen. We of course also have Americans of French descent in Louisiana–the cajuns, who are renowned for their cuisine: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Prudhomme

    In fairness to the Iberians, much of their portion of the New World was both densely settled and had very mountainous regions impenetrable to Europeans which allowed for demographic recovery of the Indians.

    I like internal combustion engines and I hate electric vehicles because there are sold to the general populace through a despicable lie, the so-called “green” one. While I think that electrical vehicles make sense for the centralized governments because they will allow for tighter control of the population (one cannot store electricity, unlike diesel fuel for instance if one keeps it in appropriate storage containers, etc.). I have been convinced for some time, but based on intuition more than thorough research because of lack of time mostly, that Tesla is a fraud — at least the car-making side of things. When I got started on some contrarian research, I landed here. I hope your analysis is correct because I would hate to see Tesla succeed.

    EVs have some advantages to be fair. Superior torque, lower operating costs (especially for those with no need to drive long distances), and of course zero emissions.

    Gasoline and diesel aren’t practical to store because the fuel additives break down and render the fuel useless. You can add STA-BIL, but even fuel with stable can’t be stored for more than two years.

    One can store kerosene however.

    Tesla’s success wouldn’t be a bad thing for America. It’s the only brand in my lifetime which has been able to crack the previously invincible luxury brands of Germany, Inc.

    The Japanese have failed utterly, and despite Cadillac radically reinventing themselves no one seems to care.

    If nothing else Musk certainly has brass balls for choosing to enter the world’s most brutally competitive and capital-intensive industry and radically reinventing it.

  153. Mr. Hack says:
    @Beckow

    Where have I ever tried to sell the rosy picture that Ukraine finds itself in today? All that I see that AP is doing is adding some balance to your overly pessimistic views. And you’ll have to readjust your doom and gloom prognosis by taking note that Russia seems amenable to allowing gas to still pass through Ukrainians territory, unless you think that Putin is just a baldfaced liar:

    Mr. President [Donald Trump] expressed concerns over the possible disappearance of transit via Ukraine. I assured him that we were ready to go on with the transit via Ukraine and we are ready to extend the [transit] contract, which is about to expire next year, if the issues are resolved in the Stockholm Court of Arbitration between the economic entities, Gazprom and Naftogaz,” Putin told a joint press conference with Donald Trump following the talks between the two leaders in Helsinki.

    Read more on UNIAN: https://economics.unian.info/10189851-putin-assures-trump-russia-ready-to-preserve-gas-transit-via-ukraine-after-nord-stream-2-built.html

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
    , @Beckow
  154. utu says:
    @Guillaume Tell

    The Jews have made things much worse, but nearly all destructive liberal ideas were invented by Anglos themselves.

    Many ideas would not get much traction if they did not serve Jewish group interests. Immigration would always be promoted for economic reasons by business but no former immigrants except for Jews would advocate for more immigration. W/o Jews separation of state and church would not be as strongly enforced. We would have crosses in offices or schools and Nativity and Christmas trees on public square we would have public prayers.

    You can go through the list of everything that you do not like and what have developed in last 50 years and you would be able to identify Jewish interest.

  155. @Mr. Hack

    I propose a variant of Godwin’s Law for Karlin’s blog comments.

    As a comment thread grows longer, the probability of a discussion about The Ukraine breaking out approaches 1.

    We can call this Hack’s Law.

    • LOL: Anatoly Karlin
    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
    , @for-the-record
  156. AP says:
    @Beckow

    nobody except you and Mr. Hack seems to think that the economy there is good. If it is good why have millions left?

    LOL, I just saw that 150,000 Slovaks work abroad in 2017:

    https://spectator.sme.sk/c/20668215/the-number-of-slovaks-working-abroad-is-decreasing.html

    Ukraine has 7.4 times more people than does Slovakia (40 million vs. 5.4 million).

    For Ukrainians to work abroad at the same rate as Slovaks, 11.1 million Ukrainians would have to be working abroad.

    Beckow, do you think Slovakia is in poverty with a collapsed economy?

    • Replies: @Beckow
  157. Beckow says:
    @Mr. Hack

    Well, I try to balance others’ overly optimistic views… I don’t like pointless ad hominem attacks and playing with statistics. AP is into both. (I will respond to him separately.)

    we were ready to go on with the transit via Ukraine and we are ready to extend the [transit] contract, which is about to expire next year, if the issues are resolved in the Stockholm Court of Arbitration between the economic entities, Gazprom and Naftogaz,” Putin

    Read it and think. There are so many conditionals that the statement has no actionable value. Russia can extend the contract at 20% of today’s level and you couldn’t really call it a ‘bald-face lie’. (You could and many would but that is more of a psychiatric issue than business.)

    The issues are resolved at Stockholm Court‘ literally means that Russia gets to collect its claims against Ukraine for past deliveries of gas. A pretty high price to pay. Russia is learning from the West the annoying method of managing its interests with indirect and unenforceable statements.

    I think given the deep underlying hostilities, Russia will squeeze Ukraine as soon as they are in a position to do so. And calling them names won’t solve anything.

    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
  158. Beckow says:
    @AP

    You play with the numbers in your head and remain completely oblivious to the fact that life is not that good in post-Maidan Ukraine. Your silly refuge in looking for ‘honesty’ is meaningless, it is an admission of weakness. Try real arguments. Nobody in their right mind would ‘honestly’ describe today’s Ukraine (all of it!) as being better off than 5 years ago. And nobody does. You can cherry-pick success stories all day long, it doesn’t change the realty that most people, in most of Ukraine, have not benefitted from Maidan. Yet.

    Ukraine no longer has territory that was responsible for 25% of exports of goods- Donbas.

    I thought Kiev controls 50% of Donbass, incl. Mariupol, its main steel export center. Be so kind and adjust your 25% to be accurate. Global economy has also grown by 7 % since 2014, services increased 1.5% (World Book 2015-17).

    With those adjustments: 30 – (25/2) – 2 (I give you Crimea) +7 -1.5= 21%. The best estimate would be that Ukrainian adjusted export have dropped by 21%. Great. And this is with the celebrated EU Association ‘free trade’ agreement in effect.

    Ukraine is not ‘stable’. It has been given a reprieve of 3-5 years to start paying its $80 billion in loans to the West. maybe Trump will not agree to extend again, what then?

    • Replies: @AP
  159. Beckow says:
    @AP

    For Ukrainians to work abroad at the same rate as Slovaks, 11.1 million Ukrainians…

    I see that you are not really good with numbers. 7.4*150k is 1.1 million, not 11.1. million. An order of magnitude error.

    To your point: somewhere around 100-150k people from Slovakia work abroad, around half by commuting to Austria (Vienna is literally 45 minutes away), and many in Czech Rep. They do it for a variety of financial and cultural reasons (Prague is a fun city). Given that Slovaks have a full and unrestricted right to move and work anywhere in EU, that is a relatively small number. GNP is growing at 4%, the unemployment is very low, and there are significant labor shortages. There are an estimated 20-30k Ukrainians who have moved to Slovakia since Maidan to work. Many claim ‘Slovak’ or ‘Rusyn’ descent and are from Subcarpathia.

    When you make a comparison that is so widely of the mark you undermine your own argument. Try to calm down, and go back to the drawing board. Where is the growth, investment, trade for Ukraine going to come from?

    • Replies: @AP
    , @AnonFromTN
  160. AP says:
    @Beckow

    You play with the numbers in your head and remain completely oblivious to the fact that life is not that good in post-Maidan Ukraine.

    For most of the country it is better than in pre-Maidan Ukraine. Ukrainians themselves say so.

    http://kiis.com.ua/?lang=eng&cat=reports&id=773&page=1

    “Ukrainians are, on average, much more satisfied with their own lives than the life of the country (the index is higher by 52 points); over the past three years, the index of individual well-being has increased from -8 to +6 and now corresponds to the pre-war level of 2013.”

    Your silly refuge in looking for ‘honesty

    Naturally for you, a proven liar, it is silly to expect honesty from someone one debates with.

    Nobody in their right mind would ‘honestly’ describe today’s Ukraine (all of it!) as being better off than 5 years ago

    Donbas is clearly much worse. The rest is collectively about the same. The West is clearly better, the Center is about the same, probably slightly improved, and the East is worse (but not catastrophically so, as in Donbas).

    Ukraine no longer has territory that was responsible for 25% of exports of goods- Donbas.

    I thought Kiev controls 50% of Donbass, incl. Mariupol, its main steel export center.

    You either thought wrong you are are being dishonest again.

    About 2/3 of Donbas’ pre-war populated and industrial areas are gone. As is Crimea. Only in terms of geographical area does Kiev control around half of Donbas.

    But it is true that Ukraine has kept about 1/3 of Donbas’ population/industry. Naturally, much of the remaining industry there is disrupted due to the loss of the other 2/3. I’m not sure how much of the Ukraine-held 1/3 has been left viable. GRP loss of 50% in Ukraine held areas suggests that only half of it.

    Global economy has also grown by 7 % since 2014, services increased 1.5% (World Book 2015-17).

    Irrelevant. Lagging from global average is not a “loss.” Would you also count Russia’s lagging from 7% as a “loss?”

    With those adjustments

    Based on false idea that Ukraine retains 50% of Donbas’ prewar economy and counting lag from 7% global growth as “loss.”

    Nice try.

    Ukraine is not ‘stable’.

    Three years of solid (though not spectacular) GDP growth, foreign reserves higher than in 2013, and foreign debt lower than two years ago would be stability.

  161. AP says:
    @Beckow

    I see that you are not really good with numbers. 7.4*150k is 1.1 million, not 11.1. million. An order of magnitude error.

    I was indeed off by a decimal, as I was hurrying. A normal mistake.

    To your point: somewhere around 100-150k people from Slovakia work abroad, around half by commuting to Austria (Vienna is literally 45 minutes away), and many in Czech Rep.

    So half live in Slovakia but cross the border every day to work?

    Poland is close to Ukraine. Ukrainians who work there often come home to visit. Salaries are the same in Poland for Ukrainians as for Poles.

  162. @Beckow

    Do you realize that you are arguing with Ukies like you’d argue with humans? Discussing Ukraine with Ukies makes about as much sense as discussing finer points of quantum physics with a stone wall. Leave them to their delusions. Maybe they don’t even believe their BS themselves, but who cares? These are the people that keep saying for four years that Russia will disintegrate. These are the people that kept saying that the bridge to Crimea cannot be built for geological reasons, that all footage of construction is shot at Mosfilm (a movie studio in Moscow). Then they were saying that part of the bridge (which cannot be built) has sunk more than a meter and therefore the two halves cannot be joined. Then they were saying that Crimean bridge (shot on Mosfilm, as it cannot be built) somehow impedes navigation in the Azov Sea. Probably telepathically. Then when Putin opened that bridge, Ukrainian “president” Poroshenko also opened… “Not a bridge”, as Ukrainian investigative journalist and video-blogger Anatoly Shariy (currently living in Europe) aptly put it. These people will say anything, whether they believe it or not. Like all mental disorders, inferiority complex is incurable. Leave them be.

    • Replies: @Beckow
    , @AP
  163. Beckow says:

    A normal mistake.

    To multiply a number by 10 and claim that it proves something is not ‘normal‘. You were comparing a relatively small, and often very local, movement of Slovaks to work with an estimated 3-5 million Ukrainians who left Ukraine to work in Poland, Russia, Hungary, etc…

    Even if one gives Kiev only 1/3 of Donbas, and we subtract the 7% growth – you are still left with a 10% drop in exports. Not much to boast about after all the hoopla about how EU Association Treaty will be a boom to Ukraine. It has not been.

    You seem unable to refrain from personal attacks. That either shows deep insecurity or a character flaw. But, as we say, ‘budiz, a boh s vami’ (probably understandable to you if you know any Slavic language)…

    • Replies: @AP
  164. Beckow says:
    @AnonFromTN

    discussing finer points of quantum physics with a stone wall. Leave them to their delusions…

    Well, I have this crazy faith that one can argue rationally with everyone, that reality will prevail. We have a saying ‘pravda vitazi‘, roughly that ‘truth will prevail’. It goes back to the 15th century Czech Protestant movement. It hasn’t always worked all that well for us so maybe it is a part of our inability to see stone walls.

    Like all mental disorders, inferiority complex is incurable.

    Yes, deep down this is about their inability to accept themselves as they are, what they are, where they live. That cannot be cured. It is very sad, the endless yearning that leads to creating myths and waiting for salvation from outside (almost always from somewhere West). As we discussed before, it is really a modern version of a cargo cult. The cargo isn’t coming.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
    , @AnonFromTN
  165. @Beckow

    Well, I have this crazy faith that one can argue rationally with everyone, that reality will prevail. We have a saying ‘pravda vitazi‘, roughly that ‘truth will prevail’.

    This is complete rubbish, and you should disabuse yourself of this dangerous nonsense.

    I’m autistic and love the truth but 90% of people–maybe more–don’t give a shit.

    Charisma, social proof, good propaganda, etc.–these are the things that matter.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  166. Mr. Hack says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    It’s true, I’m not the impresario of so many varying and ‘interesting’ topics as you present here:

    1) YOUR OFFICE SPACE
    2) THE UPS AND DOWNS OF TESLA
    3) THE UNDESIRABILITY OF WOMEN WITH SMALL BOOBS
    4) WHY THE US NEEDS TO ANNEX CANADA

    Did I miss anything? …

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  167. @Beckow

    I think you underestimate Czechs. Czechs (including people who could claim any Czech ancestry), who lived there since tsarist times, were the first to run out of Ukraine right after Maidan, in 2014. Shows foresight and common sense.

    I was in a few Eastern European capitals over the last 10 years or so, and Prague compares favorably to them all. It is a vibrant city, much smaller than Moscow, but very much alive and prosperous. Pretty much all waiters speak sufficient Russian, German, and English to serve customers. Actually, I drove to Prague from Leipzig and did not feel any big contrast, except that waiters understood English much better. In contrast, Budapest and Zagreb look poor and ran down, worse than many provincial Russian cities. Most grocery stores in Budapest don’t even keep high quality expensive sausage we were looking for: apparently, there are no buyers. We bought the last piece of it in the store near our hotel in Budapest (we lived in the residential area, to get a taste of real life in Hungary), and then the same thing happened in a small Hungarian town West of Balaton, where we stopped for the night on our way to Munich. So, looks like Czech Republic is doing much better than the rest of Eastern Europe.

  168. Mr. Hack says:
    @Beckow

    What you say is basically true. However the ‘conditionals’ point to the unknown that the future holds for Ukraine, for the world. As I pointed out recently, perhaps the diminishing of transit fees will force Ukraine to find other avenues to expand its economy. It’s happening in Russia, when many thought that the sanctions would bury it, and it can happen in Ukraine too. Or, do you really think that transit fees are the only way for Ukraine to make money, the only arrow in its economic arsenal? Your concerns for Ukraine’s welfare is touching, but perhaps a little over the top?

    • Replies: @Beckow
  169. Beckow says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    … I’m autistic and love the truth but 90% of people–maybe more–don’t give a shit

    It is our tradition that ‘not living in truth‘ is not a real life. One has to do it, or try, regardless of what happens. It can be self-defeating. But the basic idea is that trying to be as true to reality, free of lies, is what we are meant to be. I have tried to figure the evolutionary benefit, so far with no success. In practise it often creates dysfunctional situations and our history is a bit spotty with inevitable compromises and regrets. A good example is Czech President Zeman who exhibits an almost obsessive bluntness and outspokenness, his attitude is that if he restrains himself from speaking what he sees as the truth, how can others be expected to do it.

    To outsiders the bluntness often borders on autism, and there might be a genetic link. Part of it is also that giving to others one’s true views of them is a gift, something positive and not meant as an insult. They obviously don’t always take it that way. Knowing the truth, seeing reality as it is, there is a beauty in it: Jesus didn’t rise from dead, we are not all equal, people don’t like to work, quality cannot be sustained, open borders and social benefits cannot coexist, blood relations matter, etc…things that are true but unspoken.

    It is a road not frequented by most Westerners who have been beaten down into obedient, slogan-spouting shallow thought, and live in fear because they don’t want to lose access to the good life. Then again, a road less travelled is often less travelled for a good reason. Maybe it is just stubbornness.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  170. Beckow says:
    @Mr. Hack

    Your concerns for Ukraine’s welfare is touching, but perhaps a little over the top?

    Well, I like Ukrainians, and have some close friends among them. So I do care, it is a sad spectacle of avoiding reality at all costs. Your analogies are creative, but also escapist. I don’t see a real plan or a workable idea – and miracles don’t happen. Future is contained in our present, it builds from it, nobody is coming to make it work.

    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
  171. Mr. Hack says:
    @Beckow

    I don’t see a real plan or a workable idea – and miracles don’t happen.

    Your pessimism is depressing. And you don’t own a crystal ball. Ukraine is lucky that you’re not Ukrainian…The basic difference between you and AP (I’ve been watching your discussion with him with some interest), is that he sees the glass as being half full, whereas, you see it as being half empty.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  172. AP says:
    @Beckow

    To multiply a number by 10 and claim that it proves something is not ‘normal‘

    To be off a decimal place when writing quickly, and then acknowledging the mistake immediately, is indeed normal.

    You were comparing a relatively small, and often very local, movement of Slovaks to work with an estimated 3-5 million Ukrainians who left Ukraine to work in Poland, Russia, Hungary, etc…

    By population, Slovaks working abroad is 1/3 to 1/5 the number of Ukrainians working abroad. If working abroad means the country is in bad shape, does this mean Slovakia is 1/3 to 1/5 as bad as Ukraine?

    Even if one gives Kiev only 1/3 of Donbas, and we subtract the 7% growth you are still left with a 10% drop in exports.

    As I explained to you, the 1/3 of Donbas within Ukraine was linked to the rest of Donbas; Kiev-controlled Donbas’ economy collapsed about 50%. That’s probably around another 4% of national export loss.

    So now you are left with 6% drop in exports from Ukraine outside Donbas and Crimea.

    Not much to boast about after all the hoopla about how EU Association Treaty will be a boom to Ukraine. It has not been.

    It’s only been 4 years, and exports were up 16% in 2017 and are up this year. Exports to EU were up 29%.

    After recovering from the the 2008 crash, from 2011, 2012, and 2013 Ukraine’s exports were stagnant. They actually declined in 2013 from 2012. The status quo promised more stagnation.

    Maidan brought a sharp drop and now a high increase. Will it come back to 2013 status quo and them stagnate? Or will it continue to grow? At current increase, outside Donbas and Crimea, it will surpass 2013 by the end of 2018.

    You seem unable to refrain from personal attacks.

    You lied, and I called you a liar. Try not to lie.

    My policy is one of reciprocation. I actually wait until I have been attacked several times, as you have done, before responding in kind.

    I’m not sure why you complain, when you initiated this sort of interaction with me.

    That either shows deep insecurity or a character flaw

    Given that you are the one who initiates personal attacks this must be a confession disguised as a personal attack?

    When AnonfromTN writes “you realize that you are arguing with Ukies like you’d argue with humans? Discussing Ukraine with Ukies makes about as much sense as discussing finer points of quantum physics with a stone wall.” – is that also deep insecurity or character flaw? Or do you extend special consideration for fellow Sovoks?

  173. AP says:
    @AnonFromTN

    These are the people that keep saying for four years that Russia will disintegrate. These are the people that kept saying that the bridge to Crimea cannot be built for geological reasons, that all footage of construction is shot at Mosfilm (a movie studio in Moscow). Then they were saying that part of the bridge (which cannot be built) has sunk more than a meter and therefore the two halves cannot be joined. Then they were saying that Crimean bridge (shot on Mosfilm, as it cannot be built) somehow impedes navigation in the Azov Sea.

    No one here claimed this things, AFAIK. I certainly did not. You imply that I did.

  174. notanon says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    Then again the Dweeb State isn’t exactly full of A-list talent these days to judge by Peter Strzok’s hearing.

    yes – this is an unexpected factor for me – although i guess if a “deep state” has to select primarily on sociopathy it might have to relax selection on competence

  175. LondonBob says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    Police and Secret Service guys love Trump. Actually extremely hard to assasinate a President, ask De Gaulle. Even JFK would have survived Dallas had his driver stepped on the accelerator rather than braked and looked around. A lot military and rank and file intelligence officers love the Trump, JFK had few allies. Also compare James Angleton to John Brennan, Hoover to Comey, just not the same level.

    De Gaulle’s driver pressed on the accelerator.

  176. @Hyperborean

    Although their relationship with Russia is more important than various small countries, the Chinese government seems to dislike formal legal border changes.

    That’s untrue. The Chinese are planning their own ‘formal legal border change’ with Taiwan, and they want to prepare for a smooth change.

    • Replies: @JL
  177. @Philip Owen

    Russia is no more predicatable than Belarus. Once Putin goes all kinds of power struggles will be unleashed.

    Of course not. Putin is just the TV face for their synedrion. They picked him as the frontman because he is telegenic and embodies all the ‘strong Russian autocrat’ tropes. (Compare with Medvedev, who is actually much more autocratic and inflexible as a person, but people don’t take him seriously because he’s a bad actor.) When Putin retires, they’ll replace him with Sobyanin, I presume.

    That said, it’s all beside the point. The risks of regime change in Belarus come from outside — EU and USA.

  178. JL says:
    @anonymous coward

    I thought it was just the opposite, that Taiwan belongs to China de jure, and that they wish to return it de facto, hence their distaste towards formal legal border changes.

  179. Hail says: • Website
    @Beckow

    almost nobody here believes it

    I wonder how what percentages in U.S., Western EU, eastern EU, and elsewhere:

    (1) honestly believe it [Russia-Trump election hoax],
    (2) push it in bad faith knowing it to be false,
    (3) actively disbelieve it,
    (4) neutrals/unaware of the allegation.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  180. First consequence of the Trumputin summit?

    Unless the Russian side is planning to resell those to Iran, I do not understand commercial logic here. This move basically eliminates domestic market for any future Russian transport plane, that might appear.

    • Replies: @Mitleser
  181. @Thorfinnsson

    As a comment thread grows longer, the probability of a discussion about The Ukraine breaking out approaches 1. We can call this Hack’s Law.

    More formally: The probability of a discussion about [The] Ukraine breaking out approaches 1 asymptotically.

  182. @Mr. Hack

    These are all fascinating topics.

    Are you presenting Thorfinnsson’s Law?

    The longer any comment thread continues, the greater the probability Thorfinnsson will make it about himself (or Tesla).

  183. @Beckow

    I’m wired this way. Fortunately I’m charismatic so it works out for me.

    Just reminding you that people in general are not wired this way.

    • Agree: Mr. Hack
  184. AP’s basic shtick is that he generally agrees with criticisms of the Western media on their Russia coverage, but notices much the same things with respect to how Russians view the Ukraine.

    * His general observation that GDP and living standards (outside the Donbass) have mostly recovered ring true. Certainly that’s what statistics (for the former) and opinion polls (for the latter) indicate.

    While one might make the claim that opinion polls might not be very accurate in response to politically sensitive topics, such as Crimea, Russia, etc., certainly that can’t be the case in relation to anodyne questions about living standards.

    * Also correct on exports, once adjusting for the Donbass (map shows % of exports accruing to Ukrainian oblasts in 2013):

    That said, this is not a huge achievement since the grivna’s devaluation would have made Ukrainian exports much more competitive.

    * Beckow clearly right about emigration trends in Slovakia (150k) and the Ukraine (3-5mn not being comparable). In per capita terms, the Ukraine is 5x worse afflicted.

    However, I suspect that AP is correct on the transitory nature of much Ukrainian emigration. Bus ticket from Lvov to Poland only costs a couple of dollars. Working there for 5x the wages, while keeping their families in cheaper Ukraine, and commuting back every so often, seems to be what is happening there.

  185. Mitleser says:
    @Felix Keverich

    First, more Russian transport planes have to appear.
    Ilyushin seems to be underperforming.

  186. Mitleser says:
    @Polish Perspective

    I blame the West-centric, China-sceptic EU.
    In a recent Spiegel article, it was stated that that trains from Chongqing can reach Brest (10.000 km) within 5 1/2 days, but need 7 days for the remaining 1.300 km (destination Duisburg) thanks to insufficient infrastructure and paperwork pileups.

  187. @Anatoly Karlin

    Sound soooo good! Too bad even Ukrainian stats don’t support this rosy picture.

    External debt. According to Ukrainian economist Tatiana Bogdan (publication in Ukrainian newspaper “Mirror of the week”), external debt of Ukraine equals 210% of its exports, whereas 200% is considered the limit. This debt equals 100.3% of its GDP, whereas 60% is considered the limit. Short-term external debt reached 259.7% of the level of currency and gold reserves, whereas 100% is considered the limit.

    Economic development. Carlsberg Ukraine, Coca-Cola Ukraine, and PepsiCo are stopping their production because they don’t have chlorine, which used to come from DneprAzot, which stopped production on June 15th. On the “plus” side, Ukraine took the first place as the source of illegal timber entering the EU. Congrats!

    Emigration. According to the data of Ukrainian railways (“Ukrzaliznutsya”), in the first half of 2018 it transported 187,000 passengers from Ukraine to EU, and only 111,000 back. The stats for the first half of 2017 were 81,000 to the EU and 47,000 back.

    BTW, independent estimates suggest that current number of Ukrainian residents is ~ 22-24 million. The “government” of Ukraine is afraid to conduct a census, as it would reveal this sad reality (Ukraine had 52 million residents in 1991). There are a lot more citizens, though: 2-3 million Ukrainian citizens currently work in Russia, 2-3 million in Poland, and likely more than a million in other EU countries. Polish farmers hire Ukrainians for the simple reason that they can pay them several times less than Poles would be paid for the same work. Millions of Western Ukrainians who can “prove” their Polish ancestry (you can purchase this “proof” in Ukraine for $2,000-10,000, depending on the greed of the faker you deal with) have already acquired “Karta Polaka’ (Polish card) that gives them a chance to claim Polish citizenship. Hundreds of thousands of Trans-Carpathian region residents have got Hungarian passports. According to Ukrainian polls, more than half able-bodied citizens wish to emigrate and not return. No matter how you slice it or dice it, the people feel that the ship is sinking and try to get off it any way they can.

    • Replies: @AP
  188. Beckow says:
    @Mr. Hack

    Crystal balls and miracles are indeed not part of my make-up. Optimism is something that makes sense in one’s personal life, applying it to geo-politics is misplaced. But let’s try this:

    - Would you (or AP) buy a 12% hrivna denominated Ukrainian bond?

    If not, your optimism is an empty suit. Half-full, half-empty, half-this or that, the only question is would you drink from that glass?

    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
  189. Beckow says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    … living standards (outside the Donbass) have mostly recovered

    Is that why they had Maidan? To ‘recover‘ living standards after 5 years? My point was that revolutions are always about improving living conditions (other than the small nihilistic-revenge driven element). How is climbing back to where they were – if one even believes that – how is that a success?

    The export situation is pretty straight-forward: after 3-4 years, the exports are down (6, 10, 25%?). Donbas exports also dropped because of Maidan, so subtracting them – as I agreed to -was maybe a concession too far. These are all direct consequences of Maidan and the desired EU Association. They didn’t think it through.

    As AnonFromTN points out the debt situation in Ukraine has exploded. The current debts are un-payable, and the only reason there is some ‘stability’ is that Western creditors have agreed to postpone the repayment by a few years.

    AP is correct on the transitory nature of much Ukrainian emigration

    He is not. Large numbers of Ukrainians are trying anything they can to leave permanently. Suddenly, none of them are actually ‘Ukrainian’, they have all discovered their Polish, Hungarian, Czech, Slovak, or ‘Rusyn’ ethnicity. Go to any Prague hotel and I guarantee you that almost all ‘dezurnaya’ staff, the cleaners, kitchen staff are Ukrainian professionally educated women (teachers, doctors, etc…). You can probably marry half of them if you have the right passport.They desperately yearn to leave Ukraine behind.

    Ukraine will go on, that is not so hard. But that is not what we are discussing, we are discussing whether Maidan was a success based on some very basic measurable criteria.

    • Replies: @AP
  190. AP says:
    @Beckow

    Is that why they had Maidan? To ‘recover‘ living standards after 5 years?

    As I said, the primary purpose was toe get rid of Yanukovich.

    Everybody understood living standards would drop in the short term. They hoped it would take no more than 3 years or so to recover, not 4 years (it is now about 4 years since Maidan, not 5).

    If you look at economic performance under Yanukovich, it was rather stagnant after partially bouncing back from the 2009 crash. .2% growth in 2012 and 0% growth in 2013. Exports dropped in 2013. Ukraine seems to have reached a fairly low ceiling, under an increasingly despotic non-Ukrainian ruler.

    Ukraine now has 3 straight years of 2%-3% growth (projected 3.5% in 2018). Ukraine outside Donbas is set to recover for 2018. Exports up 16% in 2017, probably more in 2018. If Ukraine’s economy doesn’t hit a ceiling and continues to grow at 2% to 3% it may very well turn out that the reorientation was a good long-term solution for the non-Donbas parts of the country. Better than being under a Yanukovich dictatorship, with tracksuited Donbas thugs shaking down your businesses, and languishing in perpetual 0% to .5% growth.

    AP is correct on the transitory nature of much Ukrainian emigration

    He is not.

    I am. You provide anecdotes, I have them too. I know three people from Ukraine working in Poland. All of them have families in Ukraine and come back after six months. Money goes much further in Ukraine than in Poland. They send money back, and/or return with a money. Why settle your family there?

    Go to any Prague hotel and I guarantee you that almost all ‘dezurnaya’ staff, the cleaners, kitchen staff are Ukrainian professionally educated women

    Poland is full of them too. They work in Poland and come back.

    https://financialobserver.eu/poland/a-new-wave-of-ukrainian-migration-to-poland/

    An important feature of the economic migration from Ukraine is its circular nature, which means that the migrants from Ukraine come and go, i.e. come to Poland for a few months, and then return home. Until 2014, the size of immigration in the subsequent years was shaped by the same group of people who travelled regularly between the two countries.

    Article does indicate one subgroup that does not plan to return: those studying in Polish universities.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  191. Beckow says:
    @Hail

    In eastern EU my estimates are (skewed towards the Central eastern part that doesn’t suffer some historical pathologies):

    (1) honestly believe it [Russia-Trump election hoax] – 5%
    (2) push it in bad faith knowing it to be false – 20%
    (3) actively disbelieve it – 50%
    (4) neutrals/unaware of the allegation – 25%

    And that was before a Western (Latin) referee stole the World Cup final from Croatia and handed it to France. The (3) portion could go way up, people can see through the Western endless manipulations.

  192. Mr. Hack says:
    @Beckow

    I don’t know about buying a 12% Ukrainian bond, however, I have put off buying some investment property there (to be used for mostly my own purposes), because of the unstable situation in Ukraine due to Moscow’s support of ‘separatists’ etc; Who knows, perhaps someday Russia might find more ‘separatists’ throughout Ukraine, as they did in the Crimea, foment more wars etc; who needs it, ‘with friends like Russia, who needs enemies?’ Isn’t that Russia’s real game in Ukraine, to sabotage it, keep it unstable and create an environment that is not conducive for prosperity? Of course it is. Just imagine how much better off Ukraine would be today, if Russia had not created war in Ukraine? Your discussions with AP would be all one sided, in favor of AP.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  193. AP says:
    @AnonFromTN

    You are full of funny claims.

    BTW, independent estimates suggest that current number of Ukrainian residents is ~ 22-24 million.

    That would mean Ukraine’s per capita GDP is almost double the official one. Huge increase! LOL.

    Hundreds of thousands of Trans-Carpathian region residents have got Hungarian passports.

    LOL. So you believe that 30% or 40% of the population in this oblast have Hungarian passports.

  194. utu says:
    @for-the-record

    IDENTICAL letters appear in 21 newspapers across 12 states slamming Trump’s Supreme Court pick – and they’re all signed by different people

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5955289/Newspapers-run-IDENTICAL-letters-slamming-Trumps-Supreme-Court-pick.html

    • Replies: @for-the-record
  195. Beckow says:
    @AP

    the primary purpose was toe get rid of Yanukovich

    No, Yanukovitch was elected in 2010 and nothing happened until he refused to sign the EU Association. Maidan was directly triggered by that refusal in November 2013. People who came out on Maidan did it to get better life and access to EU. Improving living standards was the primary and often-stated goal – they talked about having living standards ‘like in EU‘. Personalities and their follies were secondary. (You are mis-remembering it.)

    It will be 5 years in 4 months. The economy numbers are pretty bad, as we pointed out to you: GNP is down, population is down, currency is way down, exports are down (and quality of what is exported even more so). Debt is way up. Ukraine is not in EU and Brussels has explicitly stated that Ukraine will not be in EU for a very long time, if ever. Another issue is that EU might not expand at all.

    The number of people who left Ukraine is in millions, probably around 5 million. I am sure some will go back, and some ‘commute’. But it is still a very large percentage of the active, working age population. To have a ‘revolution’ and promptly start leaving is an odd way to claim success.

    Many of our observations will be ad hoc. But there are also official statistics, e.g. the number of Ukrainians claiming different ethnicity in order to move to Poland-Hungary-Czech is in tens of thousands per year. I also talk to Ukrainians almost every day and their general attitude is ‘forget anything about Ukraine, Maidan, get me out of there‘. It is unlikely that is unrepresentative. It just doesn’t look either statistically or based on personal testimonies that Maidan is seen as success. We will know more by 2020-2022.

    • Replies: @AnonFromTN
    , @AnonFromTN
    , @AP
  196. Deep State is no longer ashamed of showing its hand? That’s new. They used to hide and pretend they don’t exist.

  197. @AP

    BTW, independent estimates suggest that current number of Ukrainian residents is ~ 22-24 million.

    That would mean Ukraine’s per capita GDP is almost double the official one. Huge increase! LOL.

    This actually makes a lot of sense. Personally, I think the real number is in low 30s.

    The only way to know for certain is to hold a census, which Ukrainian regime refuses to do for some reason…

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
  198. Beckow says:
    @Mr. Hack

    …I don’t know about buying a 12% Ukrainian bond

    And that says it all about your stated optimism.

    Blaming Russia is very one-sided. What did you expect, what did people behind Maidan expect? Actions have reactions. Russia’s ‘real game’ is to protect its interests. To stick a finger in Russia’s eye and yell ‘kill Moskali’ (and then actually murder a few in Odessa), to pass a law banning Russian language in official communication when at least 25% of people in Ukraine are Russian native speakers, to disregard the economic interests of people trading with Russia. And trying to join Nato and kick out Russia’s Naval base from Crimea (they had been there for over 200 years). And then be upset that Russia didn’t just sit there and took it.

    It was entirely predictable that Russia would look out for its own interests, and protect its side in this fight. Everybody does that, EU, US, Turkey,…why is it unacceptable for Russia to do it on its own borders?

    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
  199. @Beckow

    Maidan was a failure in many ways. Sheeple driven by puppet masters never achieve what they want, always achieve what puppet masters want.

    Sheeple thought they will get rid of oligarchs. Now they have a thieving oligarch for president. Some of his accounts were even revealed in “Panama papers”, but sheeple were not informed by their oligarch-controlled media. Many “Maidan heroes” also amassed huge loot, although not at the level of Poroshenko.

    Sheeple thought they fight against corruption. Corruption today exceeds even previous ruinous levels.

    Sheeple thought they are against police brutality. Police brutality is up, with numerous secret prisons run by Ukrainian security services, where torture is widespread. Even rabidly anti-Russian Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch noticed that (https://www.hrw.org/news/2018/03/19/ukraine-justice-needed-former-secret-prison-detainees). Not to mention that there is overwhelming evidence that the same puppet masters that sponsored Maidan also hired snipers that killed more than a hundred people there, protesters as well as with police. The shooting was from the building controlled by Maidan leaders. The authorities removed all the trees to ensure that the direction of bullets cannot be determined.

    Sheeple thought they are for freedom. They’ve got what they deserved: in today’s Ukraine only Nazi thugs have freedom, including the freedom to burn people (Odessa, May 2 2014) or murder them in broad daylight (Oles Buzina murder in Kiev, April 16, 2015). Nobody was punished for these crimes.
    Sheeple thought that they are for the EU. EU functionaries at different levels repeatedly said that Ukraine “is not ready” to join the EU. By the time it is deemed “ready” there may not be any EU left.

    Sheeple wanted visa-free travel to Europe. They’ve got that, so now they can slave away on Polish farms for fraction of the pay the Poles would demand. Smarter ones are getting Karta Polaka (Polish card) that gives them the right to claim Polish citizenship. Some got Hungarian passports (there are more than 100,000 of those, according to Ukrainian sources https://www.kyivpost.com/ukraine-politics/112-ua-ukrainian-mfa-reports-hungary-distributed-100000-passports-transcarpathia.html). Anyone who could claim Czech ancestry has already run away to Czech Republic.

    Basically, sheeple were fooled, as always. Many Ukrainians now realize that. However, don’t mistake Ukies for Ukrainians. Ukrainians are gullible, but basically decent people, whereas Ukies are the scum of the Earth.

    I was born and grew up in Ukraine, have lots of friends and relatives there. Therefore, I can’t just laugh at Ukraine, like most Russians. I deeply resent what Ukies did to the country.

  200. LatW says:

    why is it unacceptable for Russia to do it on its own borders?

    No, inside of another sovereign state – the Russian Grads were shooting inside the Ukrainian territory. The Russian hardware inside of the Ukrainian territory is very serious and sophisticated. Not to even mention the mercenaries (who was paying them btw?). “Brotherly people” on top of that. Call it what it is.

    And, btw, Beckow, you weren’t completely honest about the Slovak outmigration – there are a lot of Slovaks in the UK, not just Czech Rep and Austria. Don’t get me wrong, Bohunks are awesome, it’s just that we’re not that much better off than these “poor” Ukrainians that you’re going out of your way to denigrate.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  201. @Anatoly Karlin

    His general observation that GDP and living standards (outside the Donbass) have mostly recovered ring true. Certainly that’s what statistics (for the former) and opinion polls (for the latter) indicate.

    However, I suspect that AP is correct on the transitory nature of much Ukrainian emigration.

    I really don’t understand where your Ukro-optimism comes from:

    -Results of opinion polls are easily manipulated by pollsters with an agenda.
    -If living standards have recovered, why is the emigration rising?

    Saying that Ukrainian emigration is “transitory” implies that these people will want to return home someday. It’s like hoping that Russian Tadjik diaspora will self-deport – it will never happen. Temporary living arrangements have a tendency to become more or less permanent, so long as the factors causing migration remain in place, and let’s face it, living standards in the Ukraine are not going to converge with Poland (or Russia) any time soon. On an individual level I suppose everything is possible, but in the bigger picture percentage of Ukrainians living and working abroad will be rising, not falling.

    • Replies: @Mitleser
    , @AP
  202. @Beckow

    Maidan was a failure in many ways. Sheeple driven by puppet masters never achieve what they want, always achieve what puppet masters want.
    Sheeple thought they will get rid of oligarchs. Now they have a thieving oligarch for president. Some of his accounts were even revealed in “Panama papers”, but sheeple were not informed by their oligarch-controlled media. Many “Maidan heroes” also amassed huge loot, although not at the level of Poroshenko.
    Sheeple thought they fight against corruption. Corruption today exceeds even previous ruinous levels.
    Sheeple thought they are against police brutality. Police brutality is up, with numerous secret prisons run by Ukrainian security services, where torture is widespread. Even rabidly anti-Russian Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch noticed that (https://www.hrw.org/news/2018/03/19/ukraine-justice-needed-former-secret-prison-detainees). Not to mention that there is overwhelming evidence that the same puppet masters that sponsored Maidan also hired snipers that killed more than a hundred people there, protesters as well as with police. The shooting was from the building controlled by Maidan leaders. The authorities removed all the trees to ensure that the direction of bullets cannot be determined.
    Sheeple thought they fight for freedom. They’ve got what they deserved: in today’s Ukraine only Nazi thugs have freedom, including the freedom to burn people (Odessa, May 2 2014) or murder them in broad daylight (Oles Buzina murder in Kiev, April 16, 2015). Nobody was punished for these crimes.
    Sheeple thought that they are for the EU. EU functionaries at different levels repeatedly said that Ukraine “is not ready” to join the EU. By the time it is deemed “ready” there may not be any EU left.
    Sheeple wanted visa-free travel to Europe. They’ve got that, so now they can slave away on Polish farms for fraction of the pay the Poles would demand. Smarter ones are getting Karta Polaka (Polish card) that gives them the right to claim Polish citizenship. More than 100,000 got Hungarian passports. Anyone who could claim Czech ancestry has already run away to Czech Republic.
    Basically, sheeple were fooled, as usual. Many Ukrainians now realize that. However, don’t mistake Ukies for Ukrainians. Ukrainians are gullible, but basically decent people, whereas Ukies are the scum of the Earth.
    I was born and grew up in Ukraine, have lots of friends and relatives there. So, I can’t just laugh at Ukraine, like most Russians. I deeply resent what Ukies did to the country.

  203. Mitleser says:
    @Felix Keverich

    -If living standards have recovered, why is the emigration rising?

    Because emigration requires money.

  204. @Felix Keverich

    The fundamental problem with these theories that the Ukrainian population is much lower than what the Ukraine claims it to be is that it would double GDP per capita and other indicators of living standards, and increase the fertility rate to Israeli levels. In other words, Ukraine would become a reasonably successful country, and the most fecund in the industrialized world.

    Of course, perhaps not just the population stats, but all Ukrainian stats, are getting fixed. If so this would be a most impressive organizational achievement, not less so than a doubling of GDP per capita.

  205. @Anatoly Karlin

    All Ukrainian stats are not fixed, but faked. Your hairsplitting arguments show that you never were in Ukraine. I was born and grew up there, and then visited my parents there every year before the coup, last time in 2013. In terms of faking things and lying Ukraine has no peer in the post-Soviet world. That applies not only to the current regime, but all of them, particularly the ones after 1991, when they did not have any external control.

    • Replies: @AP
  206. AP says:
    @Felix Keverich

    Saying that Ukrainian emigration is “transitory” implies that these people will want to return home someday.

    They work in Poland for 6 months, making 4x what they make in Ukraine. That’s 2 years worth of income earned in 6 months. Their wife and kids stay home and collect the money. After 6 months they come back for a few months, and then return to Poland. Or not. This is how it works in every case I know.

    It is a lot faster and easier to travel between Ukraine and Poland than between populated Russia and Central Asia. It is an eight and a half hour drive from Zhytomir to Warsaw, you can leave at noon and be in Warsaw in time for a late dinner.

    living standards in the Ukraine are not going to converge with Poland

    Money goes much further in Ukraine than in Poland. With the money they made in Poland (or in Germany – it happens) these workers end up building houses in Ukraine that they would not be able to build in Poland or Germany.

  207. AP says:
    @AnonFromTN

    Thanks for admitting that when Hungary distributed “more than 100,000 passports” to ethnic Hungarians, you claimed “100,000s of passports.”

  208. Mr. Hack says:
    @Beckow

    There were many reasons in the minds of Ukrainians for what took place on the streets in 2014 during the Maidan. Both dissatisfaction with Yanukovych and aspirations to break away from Russia’s grip and to become part of the EU were undoubtedly the two highest motivating forces. Yanukovych’s popularity was plummeting before the Miadan, as I’m sure AP will point out to you. In an attempt to regain some favor with Ukrainians, Yanukovych had been indicating for a full year before the Maidan that he was interested in cementing a relationship with the EU, not with Russia and the CIS. At the very last moment, after stoking the aspirations of Ukrainians with EU involvement, he made an abrupt U-turn and decided to pursue matters with Russia instead. Hence the discombobulation that occurred, and Yanukovych’s subsequent ouster. Yanukovych was a thug of the worst sort, and nobody in Ukraine is wishing to see his return, and neither should you.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  209. AP says:
    @AnonFromTN

    I was born and grew up there

    You grew up in Donbas, the most corrupt and criminal part of Ukraine. Place with the highest abortion and HIV rates in the former Soviet world, and one of the highest murder rates. Both lowest fertility rate in Ukraine and highest percentage of children born out of wedlock. Ultimate example of Soviet culture and morality. One of my friends in Moscow had grandparents from Donetsk oblast. I have heard all kinds of shocking stories, every girl for sale, massive drunkenness, etc. It’s a different world from both Russia and real Ukraine.

    Thank God Donbas is gone from Ukraine, although too bad Russia doesn’t want it, either. Losing Donbas is certainly worth the loss of steel export.

    In terms of faking things and lying Ukraine has no peer in the post-Soviet world.

    True of Donbas, and in your case, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree :-)

  210. @Anatoly Karlin

    You are using a strawman here. A population of 32 million would imply per capita GDP at 131% of the current official level – hardly implausible given that the country is trailing North Africa in per capita GDP. It would also imply a TFR of 1.47*1.31=1.926 for 2016, assuming that women are just as likely to move for work as men (which we know isn’t true).

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    , @AP
  211. @utu

    The Russians are behind it, of course. Part of their plan to create dissension and distrust.

  212. AP says:
    @Beckow

    No, Yanukovitch was elected in 2010 and nothing happened until he refused to sign the EU Association.

    His popularity kept dropping.

    Maidan was directly triggered by that refusal in November 2013.

    It was the speak, but the buildup was ongoing. He had become widely despised in the central and western parts of the country.

    Making such a fundamental decision, cutting Ukraine off from Europe and tying it to Russia (apparently because Russia gave a few billion dollars, much of which would probably end up in his and his cronies’ pockets), was just the breaking point.

    People who came out on Maidan did it to get better life and access to EU.

    This was the long-term expectation, but the short-term reason was to get rid of Yanukovich before he consolidated his grip further.

    As I explained in my post, Ukraine had become stagnant under Yanukovich. .2% growth in 2012 and 0% growth in 2013. It had reached its ceiling. Ukraine is projected to grow 3.5% this year, 2.5% next year, etc. This is too modest, but still represents significant improvement.

    The parts of Ukraine – central and west – who overthrew Yanukovich are the ones benefiting most from economic growth. They are already better off than they had been in 2013 and it is only getting better. The parts of Ukraine most opposed to Maidan are not even in Ukraine anymore. This is fair.

    It will be 5 years in 4 months

    It will be 5 years in February. That’s when the government was overthrown. By then, at current growth rate, the overall GDP PPP in non-Donbas areas will be back to where it had been in 2013 (it is already past that, in regions such as Lviv). And from there, it is only improvement.

    GNP is down

    Nominal is down a lot. PPP is down slightly, and is on track to be back to where it was by the end of the year, at least outside Donbas.

    exports are down (and quality of what is exported even more so)

    Taking into account loss of Donbas and Crimea, down about 6%. Improved 16% in 2017, so on track to be back at the end of 2018. As for quality – exports of IT services and R & D have been booming. It’s now Ukraine’s third largest export.

  213. Beckow says:
    @LatW

    …no, inside of another sovereign state

    Really? I am assuming that US and EU know that it is ‘unacceptable’. Let’s see: bombing Serbia to create a new country, Kosovo. Iraq, Libya, Syria,… a rather fluid definition of what is acceptable. Why do you have different standards for different people?

    …there are a lot of Slovaks in the UK

    Of course there are, and some in Ireland too. I said that about half are in Czechia/Austria, the rest are all over. I also don’t denigrate the Ukrainian out-migration, I am simply pointing out that it is a factor to consider when evaluating Maidan.

    • Replies: @LatW
  214. Dmitry says:
    @Felix Keverich

    If there were so many ten millions of ordinary Ukrainians emigrating, we would see much more of them everywhere abroad, whereas when abroad you see them sometimes, but not in huge numbers.

    Recall what happened last year, when they removed visa-restrictions, and Poland was flooded with Ukrainians. Population in Poland was suddenly complaining about Ukrainians, and the problems about Ukrainians are reported all over the media, and YouTube was flooded immediately with videos by Ukrainian YouTubers talking about life in Poland, and how difficult it is.

    -

    For example, from Poland itself about 2-3 million Polish people have emigrated to other EU countries. Everywhere abroad you see hear speaking Polish language in Europe (this number of people is very visible).

    We are saying 10 million more Ukrainians have emigrated, than Ukrainian officials admit? But we don’t see that many Ukrainians abroad.

    Also usually feel like I can see (non-rich) illegal immigrant Ukrainians abroad from the other end of the street. Often they are kind of visibly poorer from their clothes compared to local people, so it’s not a group you don’t notice when they are abroad.

    • Replies: @LatW
    , @Felix Keverich
  215. Beckow says:
    @Mr. Hack

    The main reason was a desire to live better. You and AP are over-thinking it and twisting the story to make it fit. A few discrepancies:

    - How is a President who had spent his 4 years in office negotiating an Association treaty with EU a ‘pro-Russian’? Russia hated it, they made it repeatedly clear, Yanukovitch hardly met with them – he was indecisive, but he was not a Russian puppet.
    - Ukraine was divided, 50-50, or 55-45, whatever. To force a change in government and then proceed to implement policies that attack the losing side (Russian leaning east and south of Ukraine) is not only very democratic, it is also directly against EU values that Maidanistas were so enamored with.
    - I am still waiting for an explanation on how can an anti-Russian language law, passed within days of Maidan, not be a trigger for separatism. The same would – and did – happen in Catalonia, Kosovo, etc…

    None of this really matters because at the end physics and geography will decide it: it is materially not feasible to have a successful economy in Ukraine when it is outside of EU, doesn’t get massive aid, and is in a de facto state of war with Russia. Consequences of this stupidity will be dire. Let me remind you that miracles don’t happen, future grows out of present conditions, and a war with one’s physical and geographic constraints is a fool’s errand. Good luck, anyway. (And don’t tuck the sheets Tatiana, we will read Gogol later.)

    • Replies: @AnonFromTN
    , @AP
    , @Mr. Hack
  216. AP says:
    @Felix Keverich

    You actually bring up a good point, although your numbers are off. The upper estimate for Ukrainians working abroad is 5 million. Estimated population is 44 million with Donbas – so 40 million. Subtract the 5 million people out of the country at any given time, and you have 35 million people. If you adjust the GDP per capita figures accordingly, you will see that Ukraine is well ahead of 2013 figures PPP. How would one deal with remittances sent back home by those out of the country, however?

  217. @Beckow

    Ukies can spout their BS all they want, but Ukraine is not doing well even by estimates of explicitly anti-Russian international institutions. Here is the most recent World Bank take on Ukraine: https://www.worldbank.org/en/news/opinion/2018/03/15/what-is-the-cost-of-crony-capitalism-for-ukraine
    Diagnosis: crony capitalism
    Even though WB takes Ukrainian data as real, the picture is far from rosy. More than 25% of the population is below the poverty line (as compared to 15% in 2014) (http://world.24-my.info/the-poor-in-the-ukraine-more-than-five-years-ago-vb/).
    I guess that’s one of the achievements of Maidan. To rephrase Russian joke, “Ukraine suffered a glorious success”.

  218. AP says:
    @Beckow

    How is a President who had spent his 4 years in office negotiating an Association treaty with EU a ‘pro-Russian’? Russia hated it, they made it repeatedly clear, Yanukovitch hardly met with them – he was indecisive, but he was not a Russian puppet

    Yanukovich was neither pro-Russian nor pro-Ukrainian. He was pro-Yanukovich criminal gang. He got a better deal from the Russians and went with them in the end. You must appreciate the optics however: a half-Russian half-Belarussian President and his Russian immigrant PM sign a deal opposed by most Ukrainians that cuts Ukraine off from deepening ties to Europe and binds it to Russia. It would be like a half-Mexican, half-Salvadoran US president born in LA and his Mexican immigrant House Speaker decided to open the borders with Latin America against the wishes of the American heartland. The heartland rose up, and Donbas/California is no longer part of the country.

    I am still waiting for an explanation on how can an anti-Russian language law, passed within days of Maidan

    It was not actually a law but a cancelling of a previous law that Yanukovich made in a not very democratic way. The cancellation of the law was passed but never signed into law. So the language rules remained the same until February 2018 when the Constitutional Court ruled ruled that the law was unconstitutional.

    So nothing changed in 2014.

    You just revealed that you trust Russian nationalist and Sovok sources too much.

    As for the law being “anti-Russian” – do you consider American laws to be anti-Spanish because in the USA Spanish is not an official language in any state where 10% of he population speaks Spanish?

    Here is info about the law that the Rada tried to get rid of in 2014:

    What was in the Kivalov-Kolesnichenko language law? The law kept Ukrainian as the state language, yet considerably expanded the use of regional languages, should the native speakers of these languages constitute at least 10 percent of the population of a region. The law embraced eighteen languages but was clearly directed at Russian, as few of the other languages met the 10 percent threshold in any region.

    Which regions fell within the law’s scope of action? After the law was passed, Russian became an official regional language in thirteen of Ukraine’s twenty-seven administrative units: Kyiv, the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, and Donetsk, Luhansk, Dnipropetrovsk, Zaporizhia, Odesa, Kherson, Mykolayiv, Kharkiv, Sumy, and Chernihiv Oblasts.

    What was the response to the Kivalov-Kolesnichenko law in 2012? The law resulted in a heated public discussion. There was political opposition, and citizens and much of the expert community spoke against the law. To many, the law was a political gesture aimed at dividing Ukrainian society. Those in opposition argued that the law should have been based on the will of the people rather than imposed in a top-down manner; they also pointed out that the threshold for a language’s special status should have been 50 percent of a region’s population, not 10 percent. Given a 50 percent threshold, Russian would have qualified in only Crimea and Donetsk and Luhansk regions.

    None of the language institutions of the National Academy of Sciences supported the law. The Ministry of Finance stated that it would cost between $1.5 and $2.1 billion annually to implement the law and did not support its adoption. Internationally, the Venice Commission stated that the draft law failed to ensure a balance between the use of the state language as a consolidating factor for society, and the protection of minority languages.

    • Replies: @AnonFromTN
    , @Beckow
    , @Mr. Hack
  219. @AP

    As for the law being “anti-Russian” – do you consider American laws to be anti-Spanish because in the USA Spanish is not an official language in any state where 10% of he population speaks Spanish?

    Funny when people who know nothing about the US use it as an example. There is NO official federal language in the US, period. NO official language in any state. Although everybody understands that speaking and writing good English is necessary for success. However, ATMs in all states, as well as store notices are in both English and Spanish. There are official state languages in many countries: four (!) in Singapore, four (!) in Switzerland, three (!) in Belgium, etc. That’s why these countries are stable, whereas those where rabid primeval nationalism became state policy are not. It’s just the survival of the fittest.

    • Replies: @AP
  220. Mr. Hack says:
    @Beckow

    ‘pro-Russian’?

    You put quotation marks around ‘pro-Russian’ and attribute this to me, but yet, show me where I wrote this? In fact, I fully agree with AP’s characterization of Yanukovych:

    Yanukovich was neither pro-Russian nor pro-Ukrainian. He was pro-Yanukovich criminal gang.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  221. LatW says:
    @Dmitry

    We are saying 10 million more Ukrainians have emigrated, than Ukrainian officials admit? But we don’t see that many Ukrainians abroad.

    There are recent arrivals in parts of the US. They are often better dressed than the locals, so it’s evident that it is the middle class (or lower middle class). They are thinner, tidier, without tats, women are soft spoken, men are diligent, with beautiful, well behaved children. It’s a real shame – they should be in Ukraine.

    The outmigration may not be as large as some of the Ukrainophobes claim, but it is too intense, and the Ukrainian nationalists are up in arms about it and talk about it all the time. It may not be just because they’re oppositionists. And you can say all you want about the EU closing its doors, but the absolutely insane thing is that the EU still needs labor – there are recruiters everywhere. Countries will continue to compete for quality populations. All of the EE is now washed out and Ukraine is the last place. Where is Ukraine going to get white labor from?

    On the other hand, there is money in Ukraine, too. Some sectors are definitely improving. If I’m not mistaken, the wages have been growing (in all of the EE). There are Ukrainians that invest in the neighboring countries. It seems the cities are getting nicer (as everywhere in the EE). I think Ukraine is at a great point where it has retained some of the cultural purity, it’s still very free and gritty, while at the same time has become a little nicer, but not yet too sterile.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  222. AP says:
    @AnonFromTN

    There is NO official federal language in the US, period.

    Correct. Nobody claimed otherwise. I simply stated that Spanish is not an official language in any US state.

    You have a pattern of attributing fantastic statements to people. Nonsense about Kerch bridge not being built, etc.

    NO official language in any state.

    Wrong. I guess you don’t know anything about the USA.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Languages_of_the_United_States#Official_language_status

    There is no official language at the U.S. federal level. However, 32 states of the United States, in some cases as part of what has been called the English-only movement, have adopted legislation granting official status to English. Out of 50 states, 30 have established English as the only official language, while Hawaii recognizes both English and Hawaiian as official, and Alaska has made some 20 native languages official, along with English.

    English is the official language of the State of California.

    — California Constitution, Art. 3, Sec. 6

  223. LatW says:
    @Beckow

    Why do you have different standards for different people?

    The double standards would be a different question. I was just calling you out on presenting this inaccurately as something that happened on Russia’s borders, as opposed to inside another country. You’ve used such inaccuracies before to substantiate your ideological position, to blur the lines. Your passive aggressive humor is quite amusing, on the other hand.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  224. Beckow says:
    @LatW

    …as something that happened on Russia’s borders, as opposed to inside another country

    Ok, I get the point. But this is grammatically quite complex. I said:

    …why is it unacceptable for Russia to do it on its own borders?

    I was trying to say that Russia intervened to protect its interests ‘on its own borders‘. As compared to Kosovo, Iraq, Libya, that are not on the borders of the countries that intervened there.

    But English grammar is a b..ch, one can never quite get it right. English lacks grammatical nuances to signal small variations in meaning.

  225. Beckow says:
    @AP

    …It was not actually a law but a cancelling of a previous law that Yanukovich made in a not very democratic way. The cancellation of the law was passed but never signed into law.

    Oops, nuance on top of nuance. There was a law, then there wasn’t, and even so it wouldn’t matter, and we all know people can’t speak Spanish in offices in US (or can they?) And when all else fails, there is a Venice Commission to make it ok, or to ditch it as an issue, or maybe to organize a bunga-bunga party, whatever you prefer.

    Good job, AP. So there was absolutely nothing the damn Russians had to worry about. Yeah, 50 of them were burnt to death in Odessa, mobs were marching around Kiev yelling ‘death to Moskali‘, the language law was passed, new rulers announced that Russia will be out of its Crimea bases and Ukraine will be in Nato in no time. But nothing to worry about, people who just came to power, in a proudly unconstitutional way on the shoulders of street demonstrations were perfectly reasonable and no resistance was justified. Why? Because it would be against the constitution. Who has ever broken any rules in Ukraine?

    Right. That’s the way it works, when you attack your avowed enemy, he will nuance himself into a circle, obey all laws that you yourself have just broken, and above all never dare to win.

    • Replies: @AP
  226. Beckow says:
    @Mr. Hack

    Yanukovich was neither pro-Russian nor pro-Ukrainian. He was pro-Yanukovich criminal gang.

    I think we are close to agreeing on this one. Although to describe X as a ‘pro-X criminal gang’ is about as informative as saying that tomorrow the sun will rise. Ehh.

  227. AP says:
    @Beckow

    No nuance, it was quite clear.

    For the law to have been cancelled, the acting president had to sign what the Rada passed. He did not. So nothing changed.

    Yeah, 50 of them were burnt to death in Odessa,

    Terrible accident caused when two groups of violent thugs clashed. There is a fairy tale that this was a deliberate massacre. Some versions claim that hundreds were killed in the basement by nationalists, and this was covered up.

    Do you believe that fairytale?

    Rebels shot down a civilian jet, hundreds dead, no one was punished. We can now play a similarly dishonest game where we claim rebels go around slaughtering innocent airplane passengers.

    the language law was passed

    Again, a law passed but not signed is meaningless.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  228. Mr. Hack says:
    @AP

    Thanks for this detailed synopsis of the language laws circa 2014. It helps to clarify a lot of grey areas and contradictory information.

  229. Beckow says:
    @AP

    he acting president had to sign what the Rada passed. He did not. So nothing changed.

    Passing the language law inflamed passions on both sides. It sent a message to the majority Russian speaking regions. You are hiding behind minutia, it was a catastrophic mistake to pass that law. Backtracking didn’t fix it, the damage was done.

    two groups of violent thugs clashed

    I saw the French documentary about it (on Arte TV), it was a cold-blooded mass murder by nationalist thugs. It was not a fairy tale and it was never investigated by the Kiev government, another catastrophic mistake.

    Mistakes have consequences.

    • Replies: @AP
  230. AP says:
    @Beckow

    You are hiding behind minutia,

    Whether something became a law or not is much more than mere minutia.

    It was never signed, so it never became a law. Period.

    I saw the French documentary about it (on Arte TV), it was a cold-blooded mass murder by nationalist thugs.

    Fake news and you are hopelessly gullible. UN report and videos tell a very different story.

    You believe in fairy tales.

    About the movie you saw and believed:

    http://khpg.org/en/index.php?id=1453944128

    Moreira has unfortunately chosen to present an extremely distorted version of the events in Odesa on May 2, 2014. It is clear that they were in possession of the facts since Moreira actually contacted Tatyana Gerasimova from the 2 May Group, a civic initiative made up of journalists and others which has investigated the tragic disturbances and fire in Odesa on May 2. She was startled that Moreira asked only for commentary on scenes with members of Right Sector and the police doing nothing, and showed no interest in the undisputed fact that the disturbances were provoked by anti-Maidan activists. If he was so interested in police inaction, why did he not at least cover the open shooting by anti-Maidan activist Vitaly Budko which almost certainly killed the first – Right Sector – victim, Ihor Ivanov?

    Gerasimova assumed that journalists producing a film for Canal Plus were interested in the truth and now feels understandably deceived.

    Moreira has followed Russian propaganda in claiming that far-right paramilitaries “slaughtered in full impunity” people. Even the number of fatalities is given incorrectly. 42 people lost their lives in a fire caused by activists on both sides of barricades throwing Molotov cocktails at each other. Specialists from the bipartisan 2 May Group, as well as the International Advisory Panel studied hours of video footage, forensic material and witness accounts and have concluded that there is no way of knowing whose incendiary device caused the fire, and certainly no evidence that there was any intention to cause death. The fatalities were due to the fire brigade taking 40 minutes to appear.

    This was clearly not what the French filmmaker needed. He was quoted by the Russian RIA Novosti back in December 2015 as follows: “In September I went to Ukraine and shot a film called ‘Masks of the Revolution’. I wanted to get to the bottom of the Odesa massacre – it was totally muffled in Europe, and nobody knew anything about it, including me. When I arrived, I was stunned – 45 people were killed in the centre of Europe and nobody knows!”

    If you arrive wanting to make a film about a ‘massacre’ that never happened, you have two options. The 2 May Group would have happily assisted him in providing a truthful account. He could have also watched their film, available in Russian, English and in German. He unfortunately chose to use selective and highly deceptive video footage and biased witness accounts to push a false massacre narrative. The trailer, for example, presents one pro-Russian ‘witness’ claiming that it “was like when an animal smells blood and goes crazy”.

    Reality backed up with lots of links to video is here:

    http://khpg.org/index.php?id=1407453894

    • Replies: @Beckow
  231. @Dmitry

    For example, from Poland itself about 2-3 million Polish people have emigrated to other EU countries. Everywhere abroad you see hear speaking Polish language in Europe (this number of people is very visible).

    Anecdotal evidence of this kind is not a good argument. The places in Europe that you frequent may be too posh for Ukrainians to go to, and why do you assume that they are going primarily to Europe? A Ukrainian in streets of Moscow will be indistinguishable from any Russian. He will be speaking fluent Russian as this is the native language for most people in the Ukraine.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    , @Mr. Hack
    , @Dmitry
  232. @Felix Keverich

    Assuming that the Russian statistics somehow didn’t catch ten million Ukrainians.

    • Replies: @Felix Keverich
  233. Beckow says:
    @AP

    You clearly understand that the the language law banning Russian and the Odessa killings of Russians were catastrophic mistakes. So you go to some lengths trying to put it in ‘context’, to explain it away. That shows desperation, both those events did happen right after Maidan, you cannot wish them away.

    Your endless justifying it by saying that the ‘law actually didn’t go into effect‘, or that ‘some of the killing was also done by pro-Russian thugs’ (1 guy against 50?, good one, I guess then it is ok according to your logic) misses the point. Perception matters and in the tense atmosphere of early 2014 – right after an elected president is overthrown by Kiev street demonstrations – those two events were rightly seen by Russian speakers as an attack on their rights, or even very existence. So it backfired miserably and today post-Maidan Ukraine is effectively f..ed.

    The crazy thing is that Maidan is presented by its supporters as ‘moving towards European values’. How is suppressing minority rights or attacking one’s opponents on streets, how is that in any way, shape or form a “European value’? The idiocy of this is mind-boggling.

    • Replies: @AP
  234. Mr. Hack says:
    @Felix Keverich

    A Ukrainian in streets of Moscow will be indistinguishable from any Russian. He will be speaking fluent Russian as this is the native language for most people in the Ukraine.

    Save your lies for your beer drinking buddies. Yous should know better than to spread this kind of malarkey here at this site:

    In an 11–23 December 2015 study by the Razumkov Centre taken in all regions of Ukraine other than Russian-annexed Crimea, and separatist controlled Donetsk, and Luhansk, a majority considered Ukrainian their native language (60%), followed by Russian (15%), while 22% used both languages equally. Two percent held an other native language. For the preferred language of work, an equal amount chose either Ukrainian or Russian (37%) and 21% communicated bilingually. The study polled 10,071 individuals and held a 1% margin of error.[1][2]

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Languages_of_Ukraine

    • Replies: @AP
  235. AP says:
    @Mr. Hack

    I think he meant, not native language, but language spoken at home. In this case the split is about 50/50:

    http://www.kiis.com.ua/materials/articles_HVE/16_linguaethnical.pdf

    Moreover, I suspect migrants in Russia would more likely be from the eastern more Russian-speaking parts of Ukraine.

    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
  236. AP says:
    @Beckow

    You clearly understand that the the language law banning Russian and the Odessa killings of Russians were catastrophic mistakes

    Language law that was never implemented was a mistake. However the way it was presented by pro-Russian sources was false. You believed the falsehood.

    Odessa events were an accident, not a deliberate act, initiated by pro-Russians. It was used to create a false narrative that gullible people like you believe.

    So in summary: pro-Russian sources twist real events to create fake stories, you believe fake stories, and you blame the Ukrainians for the problem because they made actions that could be twisted into fake stories that gullible people like you believed.

    ‘some of the killing was also done by pro-Russian thugs’ (1 guy against 50?

    The first killing was done by pro-Russian thugs. An unlike the fire, this was a deliberate killing. Someone shot someone.

    You admitted that you watched and believed a documentary about Odessa that failed to mention that the first killer was a pro-Russian and the first victim was a pro-Ukrainian. That’s like watching a documentary about World War II in the Pacific that forgets to mention Pearl Harbor.

    Your documentary also apparently forgets to mention the violent things the pro-Russians in the Trade Union building were doing – throwing Molotov cocktails also, shooting, etc. They were even throwing Molotov cocktails on pro-Ukrainians who were trying to rescue people from the burning building! This is like a documentary about World War II in the Pacific that forgets to mention Japanese attacks and atrocities, and only focuses on American ones. Creating a fake narrative that this theater was simply an American invasion and brutalization of innocent Japan and Asia.

    You claim to value objectivity and reality but we see quite clearly just how afraid of reality you are :-)

    • Replies: @Felix Keverich
    , @Beckow
  237. @reiner Tor

    Actually, this is possible. Unlikely, but possible. Authorities in ex-USSR are very bad at tracking migration. This applies to both Russia and the Ukraine. Nobody knows what Moscow’s real population is.

    We do know that there is more, than 2 million of them in Poland alone.

    https://www.kyivpost.com/ukraine-politics/2-mln-ukrainians-working-poland-says-polish-ukrainian-economic-chamber.html

    Russia + EU could easily accomodate 10 million Ukrainians between them.

    • Replies: @AP
  238. @AP

    Your documentary also apparently forgets to mention the violent things the pro-Russians in the Trade Union building were doing – throwing Molotov cocktails also, shooting, etc. They were even throwing Molotov cocktails on pro-Ukrainians who were trying to rescue people from the burning building!
    :-)

    Karlin needs to comment on this IMO, cause he seems to respect you for some reason. But like I said a “refined” and “well-travelled” hohol troll is still a holol troll.

    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
    , @AP
  239. Mr. Hack says:
    @AP

    He needs to be clearer in expressing his views. I don’t possess your skills at discerning someone’s real, inner thoughts. :-)

  240. Mr. Hack says:
    @Felix Keverich

    And a dumb Moskal, alas, remains just a dumb Moskal…

  241. AP says:
    @Felix Keverich

    There is video of this happening, you know.

    pro-Russians throwing Molotov cocktails from the roof of the building

  242. AP says:
    @Felix Keverich

    So only 20% of Ukrainians working abroad are in Poland? Very unlikely.

    • Replies: @Felix Keverich
  243. Beckow says:
    @AP

    This is not about me (or you), but about a fairly well documented recent history in Ukraine. So you constant personal vilification is besides the point, it literally does nothing. Focus on what happened, what it meant, and what is likely to happen next.

    I had two problems with Maidan and its aftermath:

    1. Maidan people were representing only one side of Ukraine. They were passionate about it, probably a majority, and they controlled Kiev, so they won. I don’t put much weight on either the foreign interference or the nationalist extremists – they were there, but so what? The emotions behind Maidan were local and predominantly focused on EU and economy.

    My issue is that they didn’t think it through what was likely to happen by being blocked from Russia’s markets, had unrealistic fantasies like a huge ‘Marshall Plan from the West‘ and to be allowed into EU. Yanukovitch – and his ‘criminal band‘, more like the economists at Ukr. Academy – had a point: signing the Association agreement was going to cost Ukraine a lot of money, lost business, exports, and it didn’t open EU markets. It was a pretty bad deal, EU went extremely cheap. When someone offers you a bad deal, you should not agree to it just because you want them to be your friends. Unfortunately for all their faults, Yanukovitch’s government was more correct about the EU Association treaty than the Maidan demonstrators.

    2. After Maidan, instead of doing the rational thing of trying to unify the country, the new rulers went out of their way to antagonise the more pro-Russian areas. The unfortunate language law, the triumphalism and purges, street attacks (like Odessa), talk of immediate Nato membership and kicking Russian Navy out of Crimea. Kiev did all of this before consolidating their power and they quickly lost Crimea and civil unrest started in Donbas. Russia also had an easy excuse to squeeze them even more on trade.

    Westerners frantically flew to Kiev to try to moderate it: from Biden, to CIA chief, to EU bigwigs – what do you think they were doing there? I can tell you: they were pleading for quiet, for unity, for observing EU rights, for reaching out to Crimea and the Russian minority. Only later when that opportunity for a compromise was missed did the Western advisors switch to organising the military attack on Donbas. But by then it was really all lost.

    If you are open-minded you must see that Maidan mistakes were real and potentially fatal. I am a realist, I have no dog in the fight between Ukrainians and Russians. I prefer not to have a war or conflict in eastern Europe and I favor business development, incl. trade with Russia. That means one has to be rational and smart. Nobody is ever going to get everything they want and overarching ambition is dangerous and not much fun in practise.

    Think about how Ukraine can fix this, and doubling down on bad policies won’t do it – the geography will not allow it. West is losing interest in Ukraine – they don’t really want 40 million (or even 30) in EU, they don’t want to offer massive aid, they don’t want to import too much. And the neo-cons mostly cared about getting Crimea, once that was gone the strategic value of the rest of Ukraine is questionable. It can be used as an irritant against Russia, but that is not worth much and it is not sustainable and expensive. West is not riding to the rescue.

    So think about your options. Stop dreaming and stop justifying the mistakes that were made. We cannot go back.

    • Replies: @AP
  244. @AP

    Very likely, unless you don’t regard Russia as part of abroad. ;)

    Traditionally Russia is no 1 destination for Ukrainian заробитчане, and would only grow more popular after economy in the East has imploded.

    • Replies: @AP
  245. Good question. Why is Trump such a moron?
    And how is Russia supposed to do business with these people?

  246. AP says:
    @Beckow

    about a fairly well documented recent history in Ukraine.

    Indeed. And UN report about what happened in Odessa contradcits the fairy tale that you believe.

    Maidan people were representing only one side of Ukraine. They were passionate about it, probably a majority, and they controlled Kiev, so they won. I don’t put much weight on either the foreign interference or the nationalist extremists – they were there, but so what? The emotions behind Maidan were local and predominantly focused on EU and economy.

    I mostly agree with this statement, although you left out the deep hatred they felt for Yanukovich, their wisht o prevent hiom form consolidating his rule and becoming a despot, and their desire to have him gone. Creeping authoritarianism works if the leader is popular, but when he is hated it is a recipe for unrest. Don’t underestimate that. When I visited Kiev in summer 2013 even a taxi driver made some bitter comment about a Yanukovich motorcade hitting someone, and therefore Yanukovich being a murderer. It made blue-state hysteria about Trump look like nothing. There was no indication that summer that a revolution would happen, but the kindling was there, waiting for a spark.

    After Maidan, instead of doing the rational thing of trying to unify the country, the new rulers went out of their way to antagonise the more pro-Russian areas. The unfortunate language law, the triumphalism and purges, street attacks (like Odessa), talk of immediate Nato membership and kicking Russian Navy out of Crimea. Kiev did all of this before consolidating their power and they quickly lost Crimea and civil unrest started in Donbas.

    I do not disagree with most of this, either. The part that I bolded is a particularly accurate description of Kiev’s blunders.

    My problem with your arguments has been that you have ignored the anti-Kiev role in this and accept fake interpretations at face value. The language law was a mistake, but the reality of that law was completely different from how you (and Russian nationalists) portray it to be. The Odessa clashes weren’t a one-sided Ukrainian nationalist assault on pro-Russians – the pro-Russians attacked first and indeed killed first. The fire was an accident, transformed by Russian propaganda into a deliberate massacre. This fake story was used to further fuel people’s fears and inspire further rebellious acts.

    In essence, you are blaming Kiev not for real actions (Russian language was never banned, Odessa events were never a deliberate mass slaughter) but for actions that Moscow was able to twist into a fake story. You did this by repeating the fake story as true. Do you really believe it?

    We see this with Trump and the Democrtstic hysteria about him. He made the mistake of having his people meet with Russians at sensitive times. It was a mistake simply becasue it made him open to fake news about collusion and committing treason. You should blame those who transform events into fake versions, instead you blame the victim of the false interpretations.

    signing the Association agreement was going to cost Ukraine a lot of money, lost business, exports, and it didn’t open EU markets.

    Everyone understood there would be a lot of short-term pain. However trade with the EU is actually growing significantly. Factories are opening up all over the place. It isn’t 2015 anymore. Under Yanukovich Ukraine had hit a ceiling (no real economic growth in 2012 and 2013, decline in exports in 2013). It is now improving, approaching or surpassing Yanukovich’s ceiling, at least in per capita PPP terms. If it continues to improve we can conclude that the re-orientation was a good idea economically. But economics wasn’t the only reason. Most people didn’t want to live under a Donbas dictatorship. Those that did, in Donbas, are gone now.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  247. AP says:
    @Felix Keverich

    Your idea that the 2 million Ukrainians in Poland are only 20% of Ukrainians working abroad isn’t very realistic. Wages are higher for Ukrainians in Poland than they are in Russia. Most Ukrainians do already speak Russian, but Polish is very easy to learn for Ukrainians. Ukrainians need no visas to go to or work in Poland. And large Polish cities such as Warsaw are closer to Ukraine than are large Russian ones such as Moscow or St. Petersburg (Kiev to Moscow 870 km, Kiev to St. Petersburg 1200 km; Kiev to Warsaw 760 km). Odessa to Moscow is 1300 km; Odessa to Warsaw is 1240 km. If distance is the same, language can be easily learned, why go to a place that pays less?

    Russia would get a lot of people from Donbas and Kharkiv of course but overall it’s doubtful that it would exceed Polish numbers, which are at 2 million, by much.

  248. Dmitry says:
    @Felix Keverich

    We know the largest part are in Russia.

    But numbers are quite well known.

    By the way, for another way to roughly try to feel for this, look at naturalization statistics.

    Highest ever number – 85,000 citizens of Ukraine received Russian citizenship last year (compared to 25,000 Armenian citizens who received Russian citizenship last year).

    Armenia has a total population 3 million citizens, yet each year 25,000 of Armenians achieve Russian citizenship.

    Yet citizens of Ukraine – with population of a population 14 times larger than Armenia, are naturalizing only 3,4 times more than Ukrainians (in the year with the highest Ukrainian naturalization ever).

    Even in the highest ever year for Ukrainian naturalization in Russia, Armenians are achieving Russian citizenship at per capita rate 4,1 times higher than Ukrainians.

    -

    As for Poland and EU. We know what happened in 2017 when visa restrictions were lifted between Ukraine and EU. Suddenly Poland was flooded with a million Ukrainians came as seasonal workers.

    The number reached 2 million.

    Poland went crazy about this and demanding an end to Ukrainian immigration.

    If you follow Ukrainian media, there are constant stories about racism in Poland, and how they are discriminating to Ukrainians.

    There’s no reports of this from any other country, because there are not such large numbers in any other country (except Russia – where Ukrainians are happy and equally treated).

  249. Dmitry says:
    @Dmitry

    Since last year, a lot more Ukrainians large scale going to work as slaves in Poland for almost no money, and suddenly all over YouTube. (The “enlightenment” of working in the EU).

    And when holding national parades in Poland – local nationalists are taunting them.

    • Replies: @AP
  250. Dmitry says:
    @LatW

    Sure, there is skilled immigration from Ukraine, where people apply for a good job, getting a visa from a company first, and immigrating this way (in the US you need to get the H-1B visa).

    There are also a lot of millionaires from Ukraine, who are travelling around and buying property in other countries, and studying in the best schools and universities in the West.

    These people you cannot visibly be able to notice from local population, so it’s a kind of invisible emigration.

    But the large-scale emigration is not this. Large-scale Ukrainian emigration, is people just leaving (often on a tourist visa) and looking for work in the other country. I think they are usually quite visible – and you can see them around when you are abroad – I’ve seen them in some places, but it cannot not yet in huge numbers (of the millions which some people claim – perhaps except than in Poland where it’s widely reported about).

  251. AP says:
    @Dmitry

    Top video used slaves somewhat in jest. Generally speaking Ukrainians earn as much as Poles do in Poland. These guys remind me of westerners getting scammed in fruit-picking in Australia:

    Bottom video is from two years ago. The Ukrainians there are most likely not migrants but locals born in Poland. It is in SE Poland where there is a remaining indigenous Ukrainian population who experience discrimination from local Poles (there was UPA activity there, etc.).

  252. @Dmitry

    Well, Armenians are exceptionally adept at obtaining Russian citizenship, they’ve also beaten Uzbekistan in 2017, which has 10x more population! This doesn’t mean that Uzbeks are less interested in moving to Russia, it’s just that Armenian mafia in Russia is very strong. :)

    You don’t need to be a citizen to get a job. Millions of Ukrainians are currently living and working in Russia “undocumented”. We will never know exactly how many: Russian migration system is broken, it doesn’t work. To be sure, being “undocumented” must limit their employment opportunities, but it is still better, than staying in the Ukraine.

  253. Beckow says:
    @AP

    …you have ignored the anti-Kiev role in this and accept fake interpretations at face value

    If you have Maidan side, you will have anti-Kiev or anti-Maidan side, too. They exist, and have a right to exist. That is the European way, those are the European values that Kiev talks about so much.

    What you call ‘fake’ is your biased interpretation. Stop quoting one-sided sources and let’s just agree to disagree. As with blue-state hysteria about Trump, we could apply it to the one-sided Kiev hysteria about Russia-Putin behind every tree. There is a lot of mindless exaggeration on all sides.

    How do you fix this? It won’t get sufficiently better on its own in spite of you optimism. Given the EU current situation (economy, migrants, enlargement fatigue, Brexit,…) Europe will not be of much help, Ukraine will not be in EU. China won’t save Kiev either, they value their Russia relationship. US never gives aid, they ‘loan’ Kiev money to buy stuff rom US (mostly arms). Poland’s economy is too small to be of much help. No matter how you cut it, coming to some sort of accommodation with Russia, getting back some of the trade, is essential for Ukraine. Time is also on Russia’s side – North Stream by-pass, reorientation on China – so longer Kiev delays, worse deal they will get.

  254. Mitleser says:

    More than I expected.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  255. Mr. Hack says:
    @Dmitry

    where Ukrainians are happy and equally treated).

    You’re sounding like an old school sovok when you try to blast this very Putinesque sentiment, Dmitry. Sure, Ukrainians are treated equally, as long as they keep a low profile and don’t try to organize or show any inclinations toward fostering a separate Ukrainian identity. Old school Rusification of Ukrainians is on full display in Russia (it’s never really stopped, and don’t try to show me some footage of somebody dancing a ‘gopak’ to contradict the information below):

    [MORE]

    • In November 2010, the High Court of Russia cancelled registration of one of the biggest civic communities of the Ukrainian minority, the “Federal nation-cultural autonomy of the Ukrainians in Russia” (FNCAUR). The reason for such court ruling was the conclusion of the Justice of Ministry of Russia to the effect: “…the activity of the FNCAUR is aimed at discrediting the political course of the Russian government on interracial unity, and such activity threatens the constitutional regime…”.

    • On January 3, 2011, Russian Foreign Minister Segey Lavrov officially stated that “FNCAUR’s activity was targeted at damaging bilateral Russian-Ukrainian relations”.

    • In December 2010, we witnessed a new round of repressions against the Ukrainian library in Moscow (the only official Ukrainian literature library in Russia). The Russian Prosecutor’s Office launched a criminal investigation based on charges of distribution of the printed materials with xenophobia content at the library. During the past three months, the Extremism Department of the Interior Ministry of Russia conducted three searches at the library, seized books and computer hardware, as well as inflicted wounds to the Director of the library Nataliya Shariniy. At present the library is closed for the undetermined time-frame.

    • Russian media continues to report that the Russian Ministry of Justice petitioned the High Court of Russia for liquidating the other Russian-wide civic Ukrainian community organization: “Unity of the Ukrainians in Russia”, which comprised 41 regional associations such as “Batkivshina”, “Blakytna Desna”, “Prolisok”, “Mriya”, Ukrainian regional center “Dnipro”, “Yasen – Ural Ukrainian national culture center”, “Ukraina-Seim” partnership, Association of Ukrainians from Povolzhie, “Kyiv Rus”, Ukrainian culture centers “Promin”, “Svitanok”, and “Krynytsia”.

    The abovementioned cases followed the previous year’s actions by the Russian authorities, such as:

    • In April 2008, the Moscow city authorities shut down the Ukrainian educational center that allegedly did not have the necessary licensing documentation. The Ukrainian educational center in Moscow had worked for more than 10 years under School #124 license, and its members were employed in accordance to the law of the Russian Federation. After the shut-down of the center its employees were questioned by the Federal Security Service (FSB).

    • On May 10, 2009, Russian authorities Yuriy Kononenko persona non grata, who was the first deputy director of the Unity of the Ukrainians in Russia, an activist of the Ukrainian cultural-educational movement in Russia, founder of the Ukrainian literature library in Moscow.

    • In 2008-2010, a series of administrative measures were imposed on the Ukrainian cultural movements in Saint-Petersburg, Surgut, Voronezh, and Ufa.

    Such situations inflict uneasiness of the Ukrainian community representatives in Russia. The Unity of Ukrainians in Russia and Federal nation-cultural autonomy of the Ukrainians in Russia urged Russian authorities to stop the harassment of the Ukrainian organizations. They claim that state authorities of Russia are set to eradicate the well-organized Ukrainian community in Russia and replace it with new pseudo-Ukrainian ones.

    Harassment of the Ukrainian community in Russia is accompanied with the decrease of civic rights and democratic freedoms in the country, and aggravation of xenophobia in the Russian society.

    Real ‘happy’, eh, Tovarishch?

    Read more: https://web.archive.org/web/20110914153452/https://www.kyivpost.com/news/opinion/letters/detail/95689/#ixzz5Lh9TKxzY

    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
  256. Mr. Hack says:
    @Mr. Hack

    2018 update:

    It is reported that the Library of Ukrainian Literature in Moscow has been definitively closed down.

    In addition, the library website has been blocked. When we tried to access the site at mosbul.ru, we received the following message: “Sorry, but the site is closed for reconstruction.”

    Apparently, the library building has been transferred to the Department of Sports in Moscow, which plans to open the Center for Tourism Development in Moscow on the premises.

    http://euromaidanpress.com/2018/04/23/library-of-ukrainian-literature-destroyed-in-moscow/

  257. Dmitry says:
    @Mitleser

    I also think Trump’s main political role model is Netanyahu (border walls, fake news, battles with media and local elites, etc).

    Trump also admires and would like to repeat the success of Putin, but Putin’s personality and ideology is completely opposite of Trump, and Trump could not even understand it (Putin’s political actions and understanding of ideology is far too intelligent and subtle).

    Netanyahu’s political role model himself – some kind of synthesis of Berlusconi and Reagan. But with an original component of focus on things like demographics, security and border walls, which is a result of local politics and disastrous situation of Israel in these areas, but which Trump has copied. The most similarity to Trump is in his weakness – his situation relative to police investigations and local media.

    Putin himself has a similar thing where he copies ideas from leader of a small, dependent country – Lukashenko. But their rapport is something else – Lukashenko always tries to dominate Putin. And both have an opposite situation in relation to local media and elites (position of strength).

    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
  258. Mr. Hack says:
    @Dmitry

    No reply to my comments to you, #258 & #259? I don’t blame you, I wouldn’t want to have to admit that I live in a country where these kinds of discriminatory practices routinely take place too. :-(

  259. The curve-ball effect complete body evaluate conclusion.

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