Our sanctions have only negative outcomes

This was an unusual headline to see on the NY Times.

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Paradoxically, however, those sanctions and the policies Russia enacted in response prepared the Kremlin for what came this month: a universal dislocation of the global economy from the coronavirus pandemic and an oil price war that led to a collapse in oil prices and the revenues that Russia relies upon to support social spending.
Far from being a basket case, Russia enters the crisis with bulging financial reserves, its big companies nearly free of debt and all but self-sufficient in agriculture. After Russia was hit with the sanctions, President Vladimir V. Putin’s government and companies adapted to isolation and were virtually forced to prepare for economic shocks like the one hammering the global economy today.

Like our wars, even if you can justify imposing the sanctions on moral grounds, you can't justify the results.
If what you are doing is helping your enemies then you can either stop doing it, or you can admit that you are intentionally undermining your nation.

Speaking of moral grounds.

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They concluded that in a best-case scenario — in which the government quarantines all high-risk areas, people strictly obey quarantine rules, and access to sufficient medical supplies is guaranteed — the country would reach the peak of the epidemic in roughly one week, and the death toll would exceed 12,000.

Yet that scenario is unrealistic in all three instances: The government can't impose quarantine, people will not obey quarantine rules, and the medical supply situation is catastrophic thanks to US sanctions and chronic mismanagement.

Accounting for those realities, the researchers estimate Iran will not reach the peak of the epidemic until late May, and they estimate as many as 3.5 million people could die as a result.

The Armenian Genocide didn't kill so many.
There is no moral justification for denying medical supplies during a pandemic.

When it comes to helping other nations, its the countries that we demonize that lead the way.

The Italian government lamented that “not a single EU country” has responded to its request for medical equipment — unlike China, which immediately helped.

And it is not just Italy; Britain has also relied on Cuba to help it battle the contagious virus.
In response to the crisis, Lombardy’s government requested that China, Cuba, and Venezuela send doctors and other medical personnel to help to contain the outbreak.

“We are in touch with Cuba, Venezuela, and China, who have made doctors available,” said Lombardy’s health minister, Giulio Gallera, in a press conference.

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Centaurea's picture

over-crowded Gaza just reported its first confirmed COVID cases today.

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2020/03/gaza-confirms-coronavirus-cases-o...

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"Don't go back to sleep ... Don't go back to sleep ... Don't go back to sleep."
~Rumi

"If you want revolution, be it."
~Caitlin Johnstone

Pricknick's picture

@Centaurea
I guess they should be thankfull for their open air prisons. /s
Humans suck.

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

Pricknick's picture

I guarantee the definition is not capitalism.
Russia has played it's cards correctly. Minimal investment into global dominance. Maximum investment into survival of it's nation. I must love Putin, or be a communist sympathiser, or something.
I see little need to stock up on toilet paper. Dollar bills will soon be worth less than the shit that's upon them.
Hate the crash. Love to rubberneck the dystopia.
Where's George Carlin when he's needed?

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

snoopydawg's picture

@Pricknick

Russia stole all of ours didn't you know? Why? Become Russia is covering up the total.....and has been...well you get the drift. Russia bad. The USA good. Except for Trump who is in Vlad's pocket. Some days I wish I was kidding.

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America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

Hawkfish's picture

@snoopydawg

There is no shortage of TP in this country. After a week of looting, this is what I saw at my local grocery store this AM:

96EF51A2-944B-4DA1-91D1-45CC41A5FDFF.jpeg

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We can’t save the world by playing by the rules, because the rules have to be changed.
- Greta Thunberg

Centaurea's picture

@Pricknick

He got out before the shit really hit the fan.

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"Don't go back to sleep ... Don't go back to sleep ... Don't go back to sleep."
~Rumi

"If you want revolution, be it."
~Caitlin Johnstone

CB's picture

I don't blame them.

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ovals49's picture

@CB

is definitely hazardous to your health.

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"An oligarchy of private capital cannot be effectively checked .....because under existing conditions, private capitalists inevitably control, directly or indirectly, the main sources of information."
Albert Einstein

dervish's picture

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"Obama promised transparency, but Assange is the one who brought it."

dominated by our 2 party system has pretty much the same goal. The republicans cater to the top 1%. The democrats cater to the top 10%. Everything else is just mismanagement.

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@Snode

Democrats only care about the 1%, too.

I’m in the top 10% by income (barely, for now). Democrats don’t give a shit about me: I have student debt still, medical debt from our first child’s birth and subsequent issues (he’s ASD, barely, and requires ongoing therapy for social and some physical issues), and my health insurance doesn’t cover even half the bills. It’s also tied to my employment. I may not live paycheck to paycheck, but the loss of my job would absolutely destroy my family.

This isn’t an unusual position for a “top 10%-er” to be in. As far as I’m concerned, folks in my bracket are just viewed as slightly richer sources of cash to transfer to the insurance companies, pharmacies, and other 1%-er special interests that own the DP. Screw them.

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@BayAreaLefty so the %'s may not be right. I have a relation that fits that category,though. Has a home in Cambridge, Mass. Bought a lakefront home for 1.3m, rents a condo in Vt. for the ski season, and can take advantage of all kinds of tax breaks. Private school for the kids. He considers himself a democrat, but thinks Sanders is the devil socialist. Everything that would help me is too radical an idea.

I own a dilapidated house and never made it up to the threshold to get that mtg. deduction, or had enough deductions to offset income, except once. Any savings got eaten up hanging on to the house in downturns. Blah, Blah, Blah. So, for me being part of the 10% would be like heaven. I just get so sick of having to ask how much something costs, and usually the answer is "too much".

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@Snode @Snode

Had a younger brother and we lived with a single mom who worked two and sometimes three jobs to make ends meet. Frequently she couldn’t and we were always on the verge of homelessness.

Compared to that my current position is almost infinitely better. I don’t want to lose it. But what you’re describing sounds like a 1%-er to me. Maybe 5%.

My point is for 99% of us, Democrats are as hostile as Republicans are.

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Hawkfish's picture

@Marie

That’s libertarians for you: anarchists who want police protection from their slaves.

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We can’t save the world by playing by the rules, because the rules have to be changed.
- Greta Thunberg

and he's handling it the same way he took down Jeb, Cruz, Rubio and HRC with bluster, bullying, lies, ignorance, scapegoating, and his version of "happy talk."

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It never ends. I have read speculation that this is Putin's sanctions counter attack--to basically destroy the American shale/oil industry. It appears to be working so far...don't see how sanctions are going to pressure Russia to cut production.

TRUMP ADMINISTRATION MIGHT RESORT TO SANCTIONS TO END SAUDI ARABIA-RUSSIA OIL WAR: REPORT

Since the first sanctions, Western media has constantly portrayed sanctions hurting Russia big time. (ha ha we gave it to the Russkis) Sanctions have hurt but hurt the EU even more. In watching a segment of The Duran, one of the guys claimed that oil/energy is 10% of Russia's GDP. And it seems that oil/energy as part of the exports is not the majority segment for cash.

And Russa is now helping Italy after Italy was thrown under the bus by EU. Serbia declared only China can save it. Will there even be an EU after the virus has be controlled?

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I visited Russia before and after sanctions were applied. No difference for daily life. Stores, supermarkets, pharmacies still fully stocked. Lots of restaurants,no difference in selections or prices. Oil prices tanking in 2014 caused more harm, but then their central bank got smart and let the Ruble float. The net result is that they doubled the number of Rubles per dollar making up for a large part of the difference in price per bbl. When oil increased to 50 to $70 Russian oil was making a killing. The only downside was to increase the cost of imported products, encouraging Russia to further implement import substitution, a really good move. One funny upside is that American fast food chains in Russia significantly improved the taste and quality of their meals, to the point that the same items were better in Russia than America. This is because the restaurants were using local grown foods which are more wholesome and fresher than American factory farm food (GMO is illegal).

I have noticed that some MSM outlets are claiming that Russia is fudging their COVID-19 numbers. The WHO put out a video rating Russia's reaction to the pandemic. The WHO is 99.99% sure that Russia is reporting all cases. They tried to find hidden cases by looking for patients with pneumonia. They found nothing. WHO gave Russia a really high rating in reacting to the pandemic. Closing off borders early, screening all arrivals, case detective work. Lots of supplies, equipment and hospital beds, 9.5 per thousand compared to our 2.5 per thousand. Any individuals arriving at the border must self isolate for 14 days. There are serious penalties if they find you in violation.

You get the feeling that Russia really cares for her people and takes good care of them.

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Capitalism has always been the rule of the people by the oligarchs. You only have two choices, eliminate them or restrict their power.

@The Wizard for a new virus or disease. Just as South Korea did, but without the disadvantage of SK's secretive "christian" sects that account for a high percentage of SK's infections and deaths.

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