Upgrading of Russia’s economic outlook

Russia’s economy will expand much more rapidly this year than previously expected (…) Gross domestic product is forecast to rise 2.6 per cent this year, more than double the pace the IMF predicted (…) The Russian upgrade, by 1.5 percentage points, is the largest for any economy featured in an update to the fund’s World Economic Outlook.” That’s what Financial Times has to say.

Russia is expected to grow faster than all advanced economies this year,” announces CNBC and continues that “Russia is expected to grow 3.2% in 2024, the IMF said in its latest World Economic Outlook published Tuesday, exceeding the forecast growth rates for the world’s advanced economies, including the U.S.” The growth forecasts for other countries are: the U.S. (2.7%), the U.K. (0.5%), Germany (0.2%) and France (0.7%), as we can read in the same source.

Also the BBC informs us that “Russia [is] to grow faster than all advanced economies” and refers its readers to an IMF report

Oops… So many sanctions (is it sixteen thousand by now?), so much anti-Russian propaganda, the freezing of Russian financial assets, and all for nothing! Yet, the collective West – its leaders – should have known better. When did ever sanctions had their expected effect? In recent history it was North Korea, Iran and Cuba to name just a few which were severely sanctioned for years and despite those efforts to break their leaders or populations they remain politically defiant. Drawing on examples from more remote history: Napoleon Bonaparte imposed a continental blockade of the British Isles and it, too, was to no avail. The whole continent against one isolated country and the country continued to scheme against Napoleonic France and eventually brought about Napoleon’s downfall.

Notice that it is the Western media and Western agencies that speak about flourishing Russian economy. No propaganda on the part of the Kremlin, you see. The West feels itself compelled to reveal such data, data that prove how ineffective the West’s sanctions are, data that undermine the West’s policies. What are they going to do now? Impose a further two or five thousand sanctions? But then I suppose they have run out of the items they can put on the sanction list… Besides, in the face of Russia’s developing close economic ties with most of the world – be it the BRICS group or otherwise – and in the face of Russia’s self-sufficiency in terms of resources and Russia’s growing autarky, any new sanctions will fail miserably. They will effect one thing, though: they will strengthen Russian resolve to defy the West and to rely on and develop self-sufficiency even more.

The Western leaders must really be uneducated. It was during World War Two that Americans and the British used to bomb German towns and cities on a more or less regular basis, razing them with the ground. The allies pinned their hopes on the calculation that the German people, the common people, being exposed to enormous suffering, would eventually lose faith in the victorious outcome of the war and would rebel against the authorities. As we know nothing remotely resembling a loss of morale or willingness to resist the allies occurred. Rather, quite the contrary was true. The people were united behind their leaders even if some of them did not hold those leaders in high esteem. Does anyone learn anything from the past? Does anyone study past events?

With all the natural resources in their territory, with a well-developed industry and millions of educated people, Russia can really develop an autarkic economy. If additionally the country can rely on the help from China, India, Iran, Brasilia, Vietnam, Kazakhstan, then all the sanctions in the world are doomed. Why impose them then?

To save face. The Western world is in a position similar to that that the American Democratic Party finds itself in: once the party has rolled out Joe Biden, it feels compelled to stick to this candidate for president, even though it is clear that he is a sorry sight to see. In for a penny, in for a pound.

Argentina’s President Milei successful against the Davos elites

In December last year, we wrote about Javier Milei – the recently elected President of Argentina. Now, with his recent speech in Davos, he has turned the bottom into the top.

To understand what happened and what Milei got himself into, you first need to comprehend what exactly the World Economic Forum (WEF) is and who makes it up. The WEF is the world’s elite: the CEOs of the world’s richest companies (only companies with billions in revenue are invited to the Forum), leading bankers and technology specialists, politicians, representatives of major business organizations, lobbyists, selected intellectuals, journalists and activists of all kinds. The WEF meetings are therefore full of people who use their connections and influence to try to steer the world in a direction that benefits them and not necessarily the majority of people. It’s about power and money, not about a better life for ordinary citizens.

The aforementioned elite meet every year in Davos to present their proposals on how they want to intervene in our lives. They negotiate agreements among themselves and exert pressure on the world’s most influential politicians. In the meantime, of course, there is a lot of empty talk and boring debates about the world’s social and economic problems. The founder of the forum is Klaus The-Great-Reset Schwab, who became known as an advocate of collectivism. He is credited with the famous saying: You will have nothing and be happy.

This is where Milei comes into play. In a place where the ideas of feminism, birth control and increased government intervention in the economy are supported year after year, where the foundations for Agenda 2030 and its associated eco-terrorism were laid, Milei looks the globalists in the eye and dismantles their propaganda simply and vividly by exposing the lies of the globalists.

In many of his interviews and speeches, Milei refers to the so-called culture war. In his view, the causes of Argentina’s decline are cultural problems and moral decay. Among other things, this gives rise to the deep belief that the state is the guarantor for the satisfaction of citizens’ needs. At the same time, the Argentinian president points out that state intervention is counterproductive, as it should only contribute to the opposite when trying to solve a problem.

Here we summarize the most important theses of his speech in Davos:

1. Capitalism creates prosperity and is moral

Socialism leads to impoverishment and is based on violence. Wherever socialism has been introduced, it has brought more harm than good.

“The West is in danger because it has opened itself up to socialist ideas. It was capitalism that liberated humanity from mass poverty and created unimaginable prosperity. (…) In the countries where we should be defending the values of the free market, private property and other institutions of libertarianism, parts of the political and economic establishment – some because of flaws in their theoretical approach, others out of a desire for power – are undermining the foundations of libertarianism by opening the door to socialism and potentially condemning us to poverty, misery and stagnation. It should never be forgotten that socialism is always and everywhere an impoverishing phenomenon that has failed in all countries where it has been tried. It has failed economically as well as socially and culturally. It has also contributed to the deaths of more than 100 million people.”

So capitalism, rather than today’s Western neo-Marxism, is the way to abolish poverty.

2. Socialism is a repressive and unjust system:

“(…) Social justice is neither fair nor beneficial to society. Quite the opposite. It is an inherently unjust idea because it is based on force. It is unjust because the state is financed by taxes and taxes are levied by force. Or would any of you say that you pay taxes of your own free will? In other words, the state finances itself through coercion, and the higher the tax burden, the greater the coercion and the less the freedom. Advocates of social justice assume that the entire economy is a cake that can be shared. Yet, this cake did not fall from the sky. It is wealth created by what Israel Kirzner, for example, calls the process of market discovery. If there is no demand for the goods produced by a company, that company will fail if it does not adapt to the demands of the market. If it produces a good quality product at an attractive price, then it will be successful and produce more because the market is a process of discovery in which the capitalist finds the right direction in the course of his actions. If the state, however, punishes the capitalist for his success and blocks him in this discovery process (through excessive regulation, as in the EU – author’s note), it destroys his motivation, and the result is that he produces less and the pie shrinks, which damages society as a whole. By inhibiting these processes of discovery and making it difficult to adopt what has been discovered, collectivism inhibits the entrepreneur and prevents him from flourishing.”

3. The fight for women’s rights or nature conservation is just a pretext:

“When the socialists realized that the workers were not getting poorer under capitalism, but richer, they changed their strategy. Today, the class struggle between capitalists and workers has been replaced by alleged conflicts between men and women or between man and nature. It is claimed that to save the environment, population growth must be controlled; abortion is promoted”.

4. Public opinion is the result of decades of “brainwashing” in the direction desired by the elites

“The neo-Marxists have changed public opinion in a long process of taking control of the media, the universities and even international organizations. As everyone here knows, the WEF is one of the latter. Socialist ideas must be fought frontally and vociferously.”

5. Socialists have more than one name:

“There are many varieties of socialism in the broadest sense. Socialists are not only those who call themselves socialists, but also social democrats, Christian democrats, communists, Keynesians, Nazis, nationalists and globalists. They all share a belief in regulation and the state”.

6. The real heroes are the entrepreneurs. The state, on the other hand, is only a threat to freedom:

“The real heroes of society are entrepreneurs. They are creators of wealth who can be proud of making profits by meeting the needs of others. They should not be allied with the state, not even through the WEF. The state is not the solution. The state is the problem. The state is a threat to freedom.”

Since Milei’s speech, the number of views of his video on the official WEF channel has exceeded half a million. Is that a lot? Just look at the other “great speakers” who have lagged far behind. The conversation with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, for example, reached 56,000, the speech by EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen 42,000, and the other speeches received even less attention. (As at the end of January 2024)

An interesting case is the speech by Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez, who, as the country’s extreme socialist leader – i.e. in complete opposition to Milei – made a staid appearance and barely reached 12,000 views. In his speech, he talks about everything and nothing. He mentions the current problems and challenges, but offers no solutions. The Spanish Prime Minister’s speech was preceded by congratulations on Spain’s strong economic growth, which the Prime Minister himself also boasted about. So let us quote here the conclusions of one of Spain’s leading independent economists, Daniel Lacalle, who summarizes it as follows: ‘The reality in which Spain finds itself today is different from the one presented by the Spanish government under Pedro Sanchez. The ruling socialists are using the same techniques that the Greek socialists resorted to at the end of the 1990s. Namely, they are increasing public spending and debt to hide the fact that investment and consumption in the country have stalled and exports are falling. Taxes are being increased because/although tax revenues have been falling in recent years. The choice between because and although in the last sentence reveals what you think about the right economic policy.

Forward presence

How they love coining new phrases! Planned parenthood, pro-life, pro-choice, women empowerment, migrations, Euroscepticism, Anti-Europeanism, MAID (medical assistance in dying)… They all serve the purpose of painting white black and the other way round.

Planned parenthood is a code name for abortion on demand. The terms pro-life and pro-choice have been designed to remove a black-and-white distinction (good versus evil) and replace it with two positive choices. What a sleight of hand! Women empowerment is another word for disapproval of manhood and the role of men in society. Migrations obscure the fact that we are dealing with IM-migrations (of the Third World people into the white man’s world). The term Euroscepticism enfeebles the attitude that is antagonistic (not sceptic) towards the idea of uniting the Old Continent while the term Anti-Europeanism mendaciously suggests that there are weird Europeans who do not like themselves… through not liking the European Union! MAID is a contortion of the understanding of the word assist (with synonyms like help, support, save): it does not stand for saving, helping or supporting but for… putting an end to someone’s life! The association with the common word maid – a girl, a woman, who serves (but does not terminate the life of) the sick, the needy, the weak, the dying – has been hijacked and made to serve an entirely opposite purpose: the purpose of helping and advising someone how to die. One feels tempted to quote a poet who wrote:

One of these days when I die,

I won’t be expecting your help,

nor will I need your advice:

I’m sure I can do it myself.

(Władysław Broniewski)

Have you heard about such terms as forward presence and framework nation? Take forward presence. How does that term differ from the ordinary word presence? Maybe the difference is like that between democracy (i.e. the rule of the people) and people’s democracy (i.e. the people’s rule of the people). That’s at least the way the socialists or communists in eastern Europe before 1989 referred to the political systems that they had created and ran, and that’s the way they wanted to stress the difference between their system and that of the so called Western democracies. Forward presence in turn is a term coined by NATO masterminds who indicate with it a stronger (or enhanced, as they love to say) presence of the alliance’s troops in Eastern Europe, within the borders of the alliance’s eastern members. But why should this presence be called forward rather than eastern? 

This forward presence is divided into a number of battlegroups made up of contingents from the host nation (the one where a battlegroup is deployed), contributing nations (those whose troops are deployed to the host nation) and a framework nation, which appears to be the nation in charge of a battlegropup. Why can’t a framework nation be referred to as simply a nation in charge or a leading nation or a commanding nation, i.e. why can’t a framework nation be known by the term that actually corresponds to reality? Host nations are those eastern countries that are closest to Russia, while framework nations are (apart from Czechia and Hungary) the countries of the old NATO, western European countries along with the United States and Canada. Obviously, Germany or France or the United Kingdom as framework nations by sheer economic, financial and military clout occupy political high ground: the host and contributing nations can only comply with what the framework nations decide. Not that the eastern European nations have anything against this subordination: with their deep-seated inferiority complex towards the West, submission comes naturally.

So, why the term forward presence rather than deployment of NATO troops as close to Russia as possible? Precisely for the purpose of concealing the fact of this (enhanced) deployment. The troops are not hostile, nor are they deployed: they are merely forward present. Were the Soviet missiles in 1962 also forward present in Cuba? What a pity this term did not have currency then. Imagine the then CIA director notifying the president of the United States of the (enhanced) forward presence of the missiles and military advisors from the framework nation of the USSR in the host nation of Cuba! JFK would have had a hard nut to crack, or would he? Something tells us that the CIA director did not mince words then; something tells us that the CIA director would have informed the president in no uncertain terms about the military threat and would have urged the resident to take action.

Eternal tilting at windmills

On February 18, UN Secretary General António Guterres graced the world with another of his many uplifting speeches. Of the limited range of topics that are routinely broached – climate change, discrimination, the pandemic and racism – he chose to focus on the last of the mentioned. It went something like this: Ladies and gentlemen, in case you have not noticed, (which is even absurd to assume but never mind) racism plagues our world. Then António Guterres – in the Alfred Hitchcock style: first an earthquake, then the tension rises – hyporbelised this breathtaking gambit with the usual adjectives to the tune of “abhorrent”, “ugly”, and the noun “repudiation”. Racism – despite decades of reeducating the humanity and despite the Charter of the United Nations – is !everywhere! and so it will take a long time to combat it. The top representative of humanity went on to appealing to his worldwide audience that it must – without reservation, without hesitation, without qualification – reject and condemn racism which still permeates institutions, social structures and everyday life. Furthermore, António Guterres said that although racism, a repudiation of our common humanity, is deeply entrenched in centuries of colonialism and slavery and is a complex cultural phenomenon, especially because our world is letting go of the primacy of reason, tolerance and mutual respect, leaving place for – yes, of course – growing anti-Semitism, anti-Muslim hatred (some undefined minority Christian groups have also been thrown in), intolerance and – yes, again an easy guess – xenophobia, which, again is everywhere, around the world. António Guterres coupled the above mentioned phenomena with the COVID-19 pandemic, which exposed the inequalities, systematic prejudice and discrimination against marginalized, racial and ethnic groups, against – surprise, surprise – gender, age, class, caste, religion, disability, sexual orientation as if we all did not know this string of adjectives by heart by now.

The solution? There you have it. António Guterres says that we must build a better world (since the dawn of history we are nothing but engaged in building a better world), forge a new social contract (is António Guterres another embodiment of Jean-Jacques Rousseau?) based on – now the usual fashionable buzz words – inclusivity and sustainability; we must invest in social cohesion (obviously by) making societies more and more diverse, more and more multi-ethnic, multi-religious and multi-cultural. People must be made to see the benefits of diversity rather than perceiving it as a threat.
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Turkey: the Game Changer

The deal between Ankara and Moscow has been signed and sealed and the first shipments of the S-400 air defence system have just landed on Turkish soil, at a military airbase located at the vicinity of the country’s capital. The second-largest NATO army is acquiring weapons and materiel from a state that by the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation is viewed as inimical.

Turkey occupies an area which is bridging Europe with Asia and neighbouring some of the war-ridden countries like Iraq and Syria in the volatile region known as the Middle East. It is also strategically important for NATO because it controls the Straits between the Mediterranean and the Black Sea and because it outflanks Russia from the south. A NATO member since 1952 Turkey – although a Third World country – wanted to remain a loyal member of the Alliance with ever closer ties to the Western world. Not only did Ankara join its troops to the NATO but also lent its territory to the pact. The reader will have remembered that it was the American missiles deployed to Turkish territory which caused anxiety at the Kremlin and induced Nikita Khrushchev to retaliate by deploying Soviet missiles to Cuba, which led to the international conflict threatening to culminate in a third world war. The strained relations between the two superpowers were only eased when both the Soviets withdrew their missiles from the largest island in the Caribic and the Americans removed theirs from Turkey.

Turkey’s membership in the Alliance has never meant that Ankara was a patsy in Washington’s hands. It skilfully guarded its sovereignty and pursued its own interests. Thus in 1974 Turkish armed forces landed in Northern Cyprus, establishing there of a separate Turkish state and a permanent – as yet – division of the island predominantly inhabited by Greeks. Thus Ankara dared to thwart the interest of another NATO member – Greece – and Athens could do nothing about it. Turkey was strategically too important and that is why it could afford to act independently of NATO’s most important allies.

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