Why the Russia fearmongering? It's about Nord Stream 2 and money, of course

While the fearmongering from the warmongers about Russia have reached a deafening level, it's important to look at how the money-based (aka reality-based) policy is trending.
Back in February the IMF stopped giving Ukraine more loans because of the endemic corruption.

Further loans have been frozen due to the slow pace of reforms.
The IMF was also concerned about the government’s decision made in January to regulate household gas prices.

“Very predictable the latest IMF mission “departs” with no deal ... Gas price cap was the last nail in the coffin of hoping to get sign off,” Timothy Ash, head of emerging market research at Blue Bay Asset Management, wrote on Twitter.

Ukraine has since accomplished almost no more reforms, but the IMF released some money anyway because of Russia.
Speaking of Russia, it seems Ukraine has been firing American-made Javelin missiles at Russian-backed separatists, but no one cares about that.
What people do care about is that Russian troops are being stationed in Russia, hundreds of kilometers away from the border of Ukraine. Well, the media cares about that.
What the insiders care about is the recently completed Nord Stream2 pipeline. Washington managed to put enough pressure on Germany, so that last week Germany's energy regulator suspended its certification process. It's interesting what conditions it wants to impose on the Russian company.

Germany has suspended its approval process for the controversial Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline which would double its reliance on Russian gas following growing geopolitical pressure to scrap the project...
The German energy regulator said it would not continue its approval process until the Nord Stream 2 company, which is registered in Switzerland, transfers its main assets and staffing budget to its German subsidiary.

Uh, when has this EVER been necessary? And outside of an obvious political answer, why?
The whole pipeline was built and approved at every stage according to approved contracts and legality.
Until Gazprom had dropped billions into the project and it was almost completed. Then the U.S. imposed sanctions and chased away almost all of the European companies in the project. Gazprom then said "Fine, we'll finish it ourselves." Much to Washington's surprise, they did. So now Washington has decided to change the rules.
The problem is that Russia is capable of waiting it out.

Europe faces a looming winter gas crisis, which has fuelled fears of a widespread industrial slowdown due to factory shutdowns and potential power outages. It is also expected to drive a cost of living crisis for homes and small businesses.

Gas prices have reached record highs in recent months, ignited by a global surge in demand after the Covid-19 economic slowdown last year, and fuelled by Russia’s reluctance to export extra supplies to Europe to help meet demand despite rocketing market prices.

The boss of commodities trading giant Trafigura, Jeremy Weir, warned that Europe could face “rolling blackouts” this winter due to tight gas supplies and low gas storage levels.

That's one Hell of a price to pay for Washington's political agenda.
We already know that approving Nord Stream 2 would alleviate the problem.

So what is Ukraine doing, while under the threatening shadow of a "Russian invasion"?
Surely if they are talking to Russia at all, it's with threats and warnings, right?

Ukraine has asked Russia’s gas behemoth Gazprom to extend the current gas transit deal that expires in 2024 for another 15 years and offered to cut transit fees in half.

Sure, if you feel threatened by military invasion your first instinct is to cut a deal in which you offer that invading army "half off".
What is obviously happening is that this entire "Russia is gonna invade" garbage is nothing but a negotiation ploy. And a badly handled one at that.

Gazprom signed off on a new transit deal at the last minute in December 2019 that commits the Russian gas giant to send 40 bcm via Ukraine’s Druzhba pipeline until 2024.

Currently Gazprom has been sticking scrupulously to the deal that will earn Ukraine’s pipeline operator, the Gas Transmission System Operator of Ukraine (GTSOU), some $2bn in fees this year. But the Russian gas company is sending exactly the amounts stipulated in the deal and no more, despite the gas shortage crisis in Northern Europe. At the same time, Gazprom has increased exports to Europe, mostly via the southern TurkStream route that came online in January.

It's obvious what is going on. If Ukraine keeps going in the anti-Russia/pro-NATO direction, then the Kremlin will refuse to fund their government with transit fees.
And speaking of TurkStream.

Russian President Vladimir Putin told his Turkish counterpart Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday that Turkey is shielded from a gas crisis, which has gripped Europe, thanks to the Russian-built TurkStream gas pipeline.

Turkstream also runs through Greece, Bulgaria, Serbia, and Hungary.
Washington is 'deeply concerned'...about Bulgaria.

"The United States is deeply concerned by the recent statements of Bulgarian President Rumen Radev in which he referred to Crimea as 'Russian,'" the embassy's statement said...
"The sanctions that were imposed because of Crimea and Ukraine are not yielding results," Radev said, per the AP, calling Crimea "currently Russian" and even adding, "What else can it be?"

Radev recently won re-election, so he's not going anywhere soon.

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Pricknick's picture

They can sell all of their output to china and asia very shortly.
Let europe suck the american straw for lng.
The best part is nobody with a correct thought can blame russia for europe running on fumes.
Unfortunately, the ptb will consider invasion for the resources.
Which would lead to a war nobody wins.

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Regardless of the path in life I chose, I realize it's always forward, never straight.

snoopydawg's picture

But it’s okay for us to import Russian gas for us. lol I love the smell of American hypocrisy. Russia sent us 4 boats of diesel, but it’s not okay for Europe to buy anything but our gas. Seems that Ukraine was doing just fine after the USSR broke up until Obama decided to futz with them and now lots of people are struggling to stay alive and are in poverty. Bet they wish they never heard of the USA.

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It is not until the tide goes out that you discover who has been swimming naked.

Oops Heritage forgot to mention this.

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and climate change control. I wish Trump got the blame.
I dream...
We will all be dead, nobody to lay blame on to the above, which will likely b dead, or learning how to grow food in nuked soil.

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mimi's picture

explain the role of former German Chancellor Schröder in all of it? What is he doing?

I try to come back later to read your response.

All the best to all of you and Happy Thanksgiving.

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mimi

mimi's picture

@mimi At first glance it makes one wonder how long that the coalition will last?

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zed2's picture

Even if human pollution went away we would still have ENSO famines every few decades.

So this shows that we all have to look after one another. There is no way around looking out for one another. We have to help[ one another. There is no way we cannot rise to the challenge. Its inhuman to not help one another now. Nobody should be starving in this world.

But that is against neoliberal dogma (if its governments helping people, they say its a theft from corporations, who they gave human rights..) They claim subsidized aid "distorts trade". That's why the rules forbid public healthcare and many other services, unless they are already free in a country and was never sold after Jan 1, 1995. (the cutoff date)

Financial services corporations rights must be put on top. They are demanding that governments support their interests by switching to cashless money.. They did this it seems with India's demonetization.

And digital payments so the money people have will be firmly in corporate control. But what if a solar storm wipes out the global energy grid for years as some have said is quite possible, especially in the US Northeast?
Don't expect to fall back on cash.Gold? Well, at th end of the day, its inedible. Its hard to say, its a toxic heavy metal. It has little to no intrinsic value in an emergency, unless people agreed to a use as money. Would they?

But cashless control is what the free trade cult demands, So people cant bypass the global grabbing thats intended to make sure financialization of everything is total. You'll either have digital money, or you wont. Instantly. And doors and possibly, roads, even, will quite possibly be shut for you, literally. Digitally. People never voted to do this. Nor do people want the surveillance state to have that much power, it seems. Also there is the huge risk of the system going down in a solar storm like the huge one in `859. Had that happened now (and we just missed one a few years ago, as explained by NASA) we would still be picking up the pieces.

So all these billionaires are irresponsibly BSing us. Because they know this. And are still intent on giving us bad advice to get us trapped into this system. Sound familiar?

They are unfit to lead us. What they are trying to hide is anything discussion of which of any kind of the things that need to be discussable to have anything resembling democracy.

Will there be internal passports, like the infamous spravka under Communism? Thats what some likely want to do. Privatize new public roads. And access control will be tied to your cell phone's MAC address? If your'e in debt you may only be able to drive to and from work if your bank account has a negative balance.

You'll only be able to enter these privatized spaces if your bank account shows you could buy things there.

This is the scary aspect of so called "smart cituies" Keeping the unwanted peons out. Thius will prevent their voices fro ever being heard, which is of course their true intent. Its all about disenfranchising those being pushed out. Because the "outs" cant remain being ins if they are no longer working and are losing everything they have. Society wont tolerate the poor remaining around, complaining about having been pushed to the margins. Could we somehow prevent that happening? No, because its forbidden for governments to stand between corporations and their customers, as it devalues their investments. Its certainly like that with housing, the most expensive part of the problem. Millions of Americans just will lose housing. Its already like this in many areas. They just yhave become too expensive for many people in what the rich insist is a "natural" process. But its not "natural" as its a coup thats been planned and engineered by the undemocratic ultrarich. They just don't want to be reminded of anything unpleasant.

Even if it means the sacrifice of so many lives of poor people. Its the poor folks fault for not being rich!

Womens rights? What about the rich's investments. Women who dont have babies are stealing their investments. So they wnt to repeal Roe vs. Wade. To return us to the era when the rich were really rich and the poor really poor. Thats natural they say.

This coup is making countries regress. They are rolling back the whole 20th century's gains..
Anything that stands in the way of their selling off and stealing of everything, they have made it illegal for governments to help anybody except totally destitute people, the bare minimum. people. This push to prevent our evolution is now being led by the US and the EU. EU is rolling back EU citizens rights to please the big corporations.

I'm sorry that they don't tell us, but imagine if they did. People would stop voting for politicians if they realized they were lying about what they could or would do.

If there wasn't a Bernie Sanders promising change to help the people whoare spending their every penny on healthcare bills or "co pays and deductibles" , Draining the life blood of the poor people (As in reality a treaty forbids subsidizing everything that is "supposed to be bought" even education, we are supposed to roll back the services we depend on, if they are committed. Higher and adult education are in danger.) , people would demand real change. And they would run into our brick wall. We signed this treaty that forbids it all, So Biden wont allow it. He is the Senator from Delaware, one of the worlds, most corporate states. Lots of Delaware corporations are banking on getting a huge slice of the money from the digital payments scheme they are cooking up.

and demands that good jobs be outsourced.

But it is not as simple as we would wish. There are governments that put it all in perspective.

In this video Cherie Yang, a new US citizen ! (hooray!) tells us that North Koreans actually wish for a war with the US.

She also shows us that there are a great many good people, even military in North Korea.

They are people just like us..

By the way, the mountains she was imprisoned (in the mayors villa there), concealed at that time a truly infamous concentration camp that reputed to be one of the worst in the world and its entire history, It was right over the hill from Hoeryong.

So, Maybe they were afraid she would stumble upon the Valley of Death, the Sugol Valley area.. .. was their killing field.. perhaps thats the real reason why 400 soldiers were looking for her. She has an incredible story.

Her father should be very proud of his beautiful, smart daughter. Don't you think?

Please keep North Korean human rights in mind. We need to focus on freeing people from extreme tyranny everywhere. Lets not embrace digital totalitarianism, which will follow if we allow the suppression of online voices. Better to see the would be totalitarians as a problem, that could make life intolerable. Let people make up heir own minds. If we do our jobs (politicians I am talking to you) people wont feel drawn to right wing extremism, BTW, neoliberalism is right wing extremism of a kind. Because of its extremist economics. The neoliberals are trying top steal the planet's people's economic rights. And give them to shady corporate players, not the poor like they claim, they are devoted to helping the ultra rich.

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Germany was close to energy self-sufficiency with heavy reliance of solar. Quite a feat because of the high latitude. German engineers can do anything when they have the sipport of the government.
Apparently someone convinced them that greenhouse negative natural gas was better because it was cheaper. Probably some neoliberal.

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I've seen lots of changes. What doesn't change is people. Same old hairless apes.

CB's picture

@The Voice In the Wilderness
to get all their power from renewables. In 2020 it got 44.9% of it's total power usage from renewables plus 11.3% nuclear (to be reduced in future). The balance was from carbon sources - lignite 16.2%, hard coal 7.5%, natural gas 16.1% for a total about 40%. They originally planned to quit coal by 2040 but have pushed this ahead to 2030. The major factor to reduce coal is to use natural gas/hydrogen from Russia plus hydrogen generated by renewables to store to use when the sun/wind are insufficient.

Gross electricity production in Germany from 2018 to 2020

But, the Germans have done remarkably well considering their latitude and climate. Their new building codes are much more stringent and efficient than the US and waste little heat.

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mimi's picture

@The Voice In the Wilderness

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mimi

zed2's picture

Natural gas is the preferred form of energy I suspect because of its use in electricity generation. That is also probably why electricity prices track the price of natural gas.

There is a lot of energy that can be used for other things available in the daytime in the summer in sunny areas. So the key to energy affordability is better batteries. If we could store that summer energy for several months so we could use it in the winter, that would solve the whole heating cost problem.

Maybe we could use compressed air? Imagine a big tank in your house or apartment to save energy by some means like s PV system compressing air when your rooftop PV system was running and energy was the cheapest, so it could be used when its most needed.

Better batteries are the key.

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CB's picture

@zed2
China is pushing it big time. It is relatively easy to produce from renewables such as wind and solar, it is convenient and portable to store, the only pollutant is pure water, it has a VERY high energy output (it can be even be used for metallurgy) and it can used with current technology as a direct substitute for propane in car, bus, truck and train engines - all of which are in current commercial use in China. They get from 350 to 600 km per fill, the same as current vehicles. Hydrogen can also be added to the mix for electric power generation.

Rechargeable batteries are not efficient for transport. They weigh too much (waste energy) and are not sustainable to manufacture and eventually dispose of. They are not a long term term solution except for hand held devices.

China’s Green Hydrogen Projects: Exponential Growth Begins

Keeping track of China’s green hydrogen projects is becoming hard.

We saw explosive growth of new green hydrogen projects in the first quarter of 2021.

For investors, technology suppliers, and developers hoping to get a foothold in the Chinese green hydrogen bloom, this is the time to pay serious attention.

China Power-to-Gas: 50+ Projects and $20B

According to Energy Iceberg’s intelligence database, China already has +50 green hydrogen production projects by the end of May 2021.

China's first hydrogen refueling station with hydrogen production starts trial operation

Operation began on Tuesday on the world's largest solar powered hydrogen plant in China. The project, owned by Baofeng Energy Group, uses a 200-MW solar power plant located in northwest China's Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region to electrolyze water to make hydrogen, which replaces coal.

China to adapt power generation to run on hydrogen

Country aims to produce low-carbon or carbon-free power by using hydrogen, gas and renewable energy

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your writing, especially on this subject, is among the many things I'm most thankful for. I hope you have a delicious Thanksgiving Day.

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zed2's picture

than they do now if they make housing more expensive. German families are unable to afford housing. And heat. They are throwing out energy guzzling appliances like computers. Want some servers? Free?

Are you willing to pick them up?

Germany is the US in a few years. Energy is becoming too expensive to buy. Even cutting edge houses could find themselves too expensive to heat.

What happens to northern and western Europe if the (warm water that makes the weather warmer there) Gulf Stream fizzles out, We don't know enough to say. The prolem is quite complex, involving lots of factors particularly the salinity of the water in the Atlantic, various dissolved gases in the water, the melting of glacial ice, etc.

Although this is perhaps unlikely, suppose the current fizzles out? The weather in Europe could get much colder, and unpredictable, more like the rest of the world at that latitude.This has happened before. Some of you might remember a discussion in the classic film "The Wicker Man" (this is the part that was largely cut out by the studio, much to the consternation of the films viewers. This was an early example of the kind of censorshit that governments always try to give themselves permission to practice. ) In the film, the immortal British actor Christopher Lee in his favorite all time role as the Lord Summerisle. And he was one of the most prolific actors ever in any medium. so thats saying quite a bit.. .) dicussed the historic relationship between climate, crop[ failures and -gasp, human sacrifice.. (Volcanism too, as any fan of B-movies can attest to). It even seems human sacrifice may have been practiced in the last days of Santorini's Minoan culture, before the huge eruption blew a gigantic hole in the middle of the island destroying what was most certainly the most advanced civilization of that time, (1700 BC) and creating a truly spectacular caldera lake and a global winter effect that may have driven the Bible's plagues of Egypt. The eruption, which seems to have ben a very violent one, like the Mt St Helens eruption in Washington State - an eruption an aquaintance of mine at the time was caught in, he barely escaped with his life.

Like that it was quite comparable to an atomic explosion in firocity and we know today that it sent wave after wave of monstrous tidal waves all around the Mediterranean. Instantly obliterating a great many coastal communities in around 1767 BCE The tidal waves went clean over smaller islands, it seems, (as shown by the pumice tufa layers in the coastal areas for hundreds of miles. recogn