The Pillaging of Russia
The accusation that Putin has a connection to Trump, so widely repeated now by the corporate media and the Democrats with whom they coordinate, is nothing new. It also came up in the primaries. Republican political operatives and the neoconservative intelligentsia, unable to understand the threat or accept the repudiation of their failed policies, claimed that Trump’s rise was somehow aided by Russia, and that his online supporters were “Kremlin-funded trolls.”
This last charge is repeated even now. And Hillary Clinton makes dark hints about “celebrations in the Kremlin” if Trump were to win. His prudence and restraint in wanting to avoid war with Russia are presented as “evidence” that he is “Putin’s agent” by the same reckless political and foreign-policy establishment that has brought one humiliation after another to the United States over the past three decades.
There’s more than just jingoistic hysteria behind the many accusations that Trump is “Putin’s agent.” In a poetic way, this is true. The international interests that financially wrecked Russia in the ’90s are doing the same to the United States now. Putin stopped them in Russia and Trump is promising to stop them in America. They recognize Trump as the enemy and slander in the only style they know—the paranoid style.
“The international interests that financially wrecked Russia in the ’90s are doing the same to the United States now.”
Trump was once blamed for praising Putin’s performance. But he was right. Pensions, salaries, GDP, and the value of gold reserves in Russia have risen greatly since 1999—in some cases tenfold or more. This was while both inflation and the debt-to-GDP ratio declined by orders of magnitude. The rise in living standard under Putin is reflected in longer life expectancy: It had dropped to a third-world level during the 1990s, to around 55–57, and has now risen back up to 70 by most measures. Birthrates have normalized and recently overtaken the United States. Visit Moscow and you will see infrastructure, buildings, and development that are more impressive than those found in any American city—though the same could be said, of course, for many other countries now.
By contrast, Russians remember the liberal and globalist experiment of the ’90s as a time of great suffering. The early death of literally millions of people from economic deprivation, the utter ruin of many of Russia’s formerly world-class industries: This is the legacy of economic liberalization in Russia. How did it happen?
In short, “entrepreneurs” would run fraudulently acquired businesses into the ground, fire-sale the assets internationally, and move abroad with the profits. This is globalism in its purest form, without the slogans and boosterism. American economists, academics, and businessmen played an important part in all of this. Marc Rich—a fugitive later pardoned by Bill Clinton—was, for example, “the largest trader of Russia’s oil and aluminum on a spot basis,” according to Steve Sailer, who has documented the “rape of Russia” in some detail. George Soros was a large investor in these ventures, which provided the international market with financial backing, and cover for the oligarchs’ robbery of their own people. This was done especially under Boris Jordan’s CS First Boston bank and later Renaissance Capital, Moscow “investment banks” staffed by Soros associates.
Even more important was a group of Harvard and MIT economists who advised and assisted the Russian government in the reforms. These are men still involved in public life in the United States: current vice chairman of the Federal Reserve Stanley Fischer, Jeffrey Sachs, Jonathan Hay, Andrei Shleifer, and Larry Summers, who was later Secretary of the Treasury under Bill Clinton. As late as 1998, months before Russia defaulted, Fischer claimed that the Yeltsin regime had to be praised for following the advice of this group. Using the rhetoric of liberalization and globalism, American academics and financiers played a key role in the pillaging of Russia.
Russian politics and media in the 1990s served only one purpose: to make room for this pillaging, and to prevent all popular or legal obstacles to its happening as fast as possible. Russian media was only “free” in the perverse sense that it served entirely the private interests of men like Boris Berezovsky, Mikhail Khodorkovsky, and Boris Jordan. They owned TV stations, newspapers, and magazines, and news was edited to facilitate and cover up their criminal enterprise and their control of puppet politicians, like the besotted Yeltsin. Many journalists during that time lost their lives when they tried to expose corruption. The Western journalists and politicians who cry crocodile tears now over Putin’s supposed crimes had nothing to say then.
This all sounds and feels familiar. If Putin really is responsible for the DNC leaks, he has done a great service to journalism and to America. The emails reveal what was widely known but previously dismissed as a “conspiracy theory”: The American political system as it now exists is rigged by party apparatchiks in thrall to corporate donors and lobbyists. These same few financiers own most of the media outlets, which coordinate with the marionette political class to promote an oligarch-approved narrative. The entire edifice of American government and media of our time serves here the same purpose that the controlled government and media of Russia served in the 1990s.
Several recent studies have documented the catastrophic decline in the life expectancy and living standard of the white working class in the United States. But this has exactly the same causes as the great suffering experienced by the Russians in the ’90s, and in many cases it is the same people and corporations who are profiting by it. The offshoring of America’s industries and jobs, the devastation of American manufacturing and most kinds of engineering, the massive national debt are, in their beginnings, the same process of national destruction that began in Russia in the 1990s, but to which Putin put a stop in the 2000s.
Hillary Clinton, like Jeb Bush, is not running for president. With the exception of Trump and maybe Sanders, all other candidates this year were running for the analogue of Yeltsin’s position in the Russia of the ’90s. That is, a puppet who will give a rubber stamp to a few oligarchs to extract as much wealth as possible in America’s hour of decline and prepare for themselves a refuge abroad. Mass immigration, reckless wars, and the various international trade deals proposed are the principal policies by which this is to be done. “Diversity,” “the global economy,” and other such platitudes are the rhetoric meant to hypnotize the people to their own dispossession. And the same international vampires who raped Russia and who hate Putin for stopping their schemes are now shaking with fear that an American can stop them at home.