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Fallout from the Ukraine invasion


Spekulatius
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59 minutes ago, Spekulatius said:

@Castanzasounds like there is some sympathy for Russian Oligarch which I don’t share. These Oligarch belong to Putins inner circle and the money is tied to Putin, directly or indirectly. if you don’t believe, it just check out how they made their money. None of them is just an entrepreneur, they got formerly state owned assets for Pennys with the help of the government and who knows exactly how the financial links work. These are not Jeff Bezos that build an empire out of nothing.

Just look at Abramovich, the Chelsea football club owner. Lives in Britain, but hasn’t said peep bout Putin or the invasion. He rather lets the club go than breaking away from Putin. this tells you all you need to know, Other Oligarchs are way worse and I bet most have some dead bodies in their closets.

As for the sanctions, it is important to keep in mind that we have only seen the effect of the financial part yet. The effects of the technology and trade part will become evident in a month or two, when consumables, spare parts etc run out in Russia all over the place. Then many things will just stop working and while the Russian are good at improvising, I think it will cause a total collapse, which hopefully will affect their army as well


I would not be surprised if in a month or two we see pictures of Russian soldiers abandoning their equipment and take a bus or walk home.

Did a little reaching on Alisher Usmanov who seems to have been the primary target thus far. Again, I'm not giving these guys a pass on their shady dealings and "loan for shares" arrangements that allowed them to enrich themselves post USSR. I'm just saying at face value they don't seem that different than some iconic American Businessmen (Rockefeller, Ford, etc.)

I mean they sound like just a bunch of rich assholes who were ruthless businessmen and took advantage of a bad situation. Fuck'em I don't really care and I can see the strategic advantage of cracking down on them. But just like the thought experiment of "What would the US do if Russia or China build missile systems in Canada or Mexico" I wonder what the US would do if assets were seized of US "oligarchs". Bezos built his company initially on his own grit there is no doubt. But you know damn well he has lobbying power and has used his money for different governmental influences. 

I think when you're doing business in the big leagues that's just the name of the game. Difference is that Russian Oligarchs were in bed with Putin so like I said fuck'em. Trump, Biden, and Obama is a far cry from him.

Some interesting investments that from Usmanov. I don't think the apple falls too far from the tree. He was the second largest funder of FB in the beginning. Something that FB does not mention on their history timeline. Microsoft didn't even take as big of a stake. Half these guys (oligarchs) are living in NYC or London, own ton of assets in these countries, give tons to philanthropic causes etc. These countries are perfectly fine taking their taxes, seed money etc. during the "good times". 

In 2009 Facebook’s founder and chief executive, Mark Zuckerberg turned to the Russian investors at a meeting brokered by Goldman Sachs. Usmanov made his first investment to Facebook in 2009 by Mail.ru, investing $200 million for a 1.96-percent stake that valued Facebook at $10 billion. He accepted Zuckerberg’s conditions and gave up the voting rights on those shares to him.[41][42]

Facebook’s IPO in 2012 valued it several times and selling his stakes Usmanov won around $1 billion on it.[28][43]

In 2011 the DST made $800m investment to Twitter.[44]

Through Mail.Ru Group Usmanov made notable investments in other international technology companies, including Groupon, Zynga, Airbnb, ZocDoc, Alibaba and 360buy.[45]

In 2013, he was said to have invested $100 million in Apple.[46] He subsequently disposed of his shares in early 2014.[47]

The Alibaba investment was said by Usmanov to be up 500% in late 2014. The Facebook investment Usmanov implied he had sold, saying "I admire Facebook, but I said 'arrivederci' Facebook". At the same time, he said he had made an investment in "Chinese low-cost smartphone maker Xiaomi", saying it is a "future technology giant", and that he is looking to invest in India, particularly the online trade sector.[48]

In September 2018, it was reported that Mail.ru would enter into a $2 billion joint venture with Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.[49] The agreement would merge the online marketplaces of both companies in the Russian market and was backed by the Kremlin via the Russian Direct Investment Fund.[50]

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The Swiss are also on board. More Russian money frozen:

https://finance.yahoo.com/news/swiss-adopt-eu-sanctions-russia-134501401.html

It is quite possible that some of the sanctions against Oligarch will turn out to be overreach. The way I look at this right now is that we are fighting a real war against Russia/Putin.

It is just that West has chosen to use finance and trade embargoes as a weapon, not guns, airplanes or tanks. The reason is simple, the Russian economy is tiny compared to the west (size of Texas or less in terms of GDP). Russia simply can't fight back on that level and without economy, eventually the Russian army should fall apart sooner or later. You can't run a large army without money and a functioning economy.

That's my framework. In a war there is going to be some collateral damage. It could well be that some of he Oligarch are clean (or clean enough) and frozen assets should be returned in time.  But right now the goal is to win the war, not play nice. To win the war, you need to remove Putin's means to feed his beast and most Oligarch are likely play a  part in that.

Besides that, It is unlikely that the targeted Oligarch will suffer too much, it's not that they have to work as janitors to make ends meet all of a sudden. The people in Ukraine on the receiving end have a much larger problems.

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I guess on the bright side (on this dark day; attacking a nuclear reactor WTF) Hollywood movies for the next 15 years will go back to Russian as villains, such that when I travel people will look at me less in a “funny way”

 

saw this on social media. Pretty funny. 

3D2D0B79-758D-4EAC-9FB4-C74111B1B7C4.jpeg

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57 minutes ago, Xerxes said:

I guess on the bright side (on this dark day; attacking a nuclear reactor WTF) Hollywood movies for the next 15 years will go back to Russian as villains, such that when I travel people will look at me less in a “funny way”

 

saw this on social media. Pretty funny. 

3D2D0B79-758D-4EAC-9FB4-C74111B1B7C4.jpeg

As you state, the branding is everything.

I also think it's time for another Rambo movie. Rambo did already duty in the US, Vietnam, Birma and Mexico, so it's time for the Ukraine edition. You really don't need an US army, Rambo can mess up things all by himself.

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https://www.understandingwar.org/

Solid resource for quick no bullshit analysis of what's going on. The noise is definitely getting louder on twitter and it's becoming impossible to get a grasp on this situation. 

Fucking morons last night fighting at the nuclear plant. One of the blocks was possibly hit by a tank round and other small arms fire. Apparently a fire started and firefighters couldn't get in because of the firefight....Not to mention they store a ton of spent fuel rods outside in the open in concrete casks...

Honestly if those dipshits threaten the integrity of the plant I think NATO should consider getting involved. Chernobyl was bad enough....can you imagine trying to contain a meltdown when the rest of the infrastructure (bridges, roads, powerlines, fuel stations, air space) is either destroyed or too dangerous to navigate? 

 

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https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Madman_theory

replace Ho Chi Minh with Zelensky. Replace Hanoi with Kiev and replace Nixon with Putin.

our best hope is that Putin is rationally acting irrationally. That is how low we have come.

—————

Nixon's chief of staff, H. R. Haldeman, wrote that Nixon had confided to him:

I call it the Madman Theory, Bob. I want the North Vietnamese to believe I've reached the point where I might do anything to stop the war. We'll just slip the word to them that, "for God's sake, you know Nixon is obsessed about communism. We can't restrain him when he's angry—and he has his hand on the nuclear button" and Ho Chi Minhhimself will be in Paris in two days begging for peace.[7]

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34 minutes ago, Spekulatius said:

As you state, the branding is everything.

I also think it's time for another Rambo movie. Rambo did already duty in the US, Vietnam, Birma and Mexico, so it's time for the Ukraine edition. You really don't need an US army, Rambo can mess up things all by himself.

I liked his Burma movie. 

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11 minutes ago, Castanza said:

https://www.understandingwar.org/

Solid resource for quick no bullshit analysis of what's going on. The noise is definitely getting louder on twitter and it's becoming impossible to get a grasp on this situation. 

Fucking morons last night fighting at the nuclear plant. One of the blocks was possibly hit by a tank round and other small arms fire. Apparently a fire started and firefighters couldn't get in because of the firefight....Not to mention they store a ton of spent fuel rods outside in the open in concrete casks...

Honestly if those dipshits threaten the integrity of the plant I think NATO should consider getting involved. Chernobyl was bad enough....can you imagine trying to contain a meltdown when the rest of the infrastructure (bridges, roads, powerlines, fuel stations, air space) is either destroyed or too dangerous to navigate? 

 

I remember Chernobyl. Mushrooms (which grow quickly and soak up radioactive material) all over were contaminated. We were often picking wild Champignons in cow pastures in early fall and there actually places and that year, there were places you could get them checked with Geiger counters.

 

FWIW, I don't think NATO is getting involved (almost) no matter what happens in Ukraine. The risk of a clash between nuclear armed powers is just too large. Realpolitik (German word).

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Posted (edited)

One of the last things we need is Russophobia. The article is interesting and I have not seen much of this personally. There is a good amount of emigrants with Russian ties in the Boston are.  OST of these people fled because they don’t like Putin style oppression or come from groups that were optioned in the former Soviet Union (Jewish people, ethnic minorities).

https://www.nytimes.com/2022/03/04/us/immigrant-identity-russia-ukraine.html

Edited by Spekulatius
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21 hours ago, Spekulatius said:

One of the last things we need is Russophobia. The article is interesting and I have not seen much of this personally. There is a good amount of emigrants with Russian ties in the Boston are.  OST of these people fled because they don’t like Putin style oppression or come from groups that were optioned in the former Soviet Union (Jewish people, ethnic minorities).

https://www.nytimes.com/2022/03/04/us/immigrant-identity-russia-ukraine.html

Would be appreciated if you could add some color; are German politicians talking these days about supply chain independence? Are there any new budgets in place? Or is it just that 100 billion? I mean, did Germany really wake up and we'll be seeing reversal of some regulations from the past 20 years? Or the idiots running Berlin are pretty much all over the place (those price controls without increasing supply)? Thanks!

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"LONDON METAL EXCHANGE SAYS CANCEL ALL NICKEL TRADES EXECUTED ON OR AFTER 00:00 UK TIME ON 8 MARCH 2022 IN THE INTER-OFFICE MARKET AND ON LMESELECT"
 
 
Edited by meiroy
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