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Thursday, February 25, 2016

US Fascism i.e. Needlessly Picking On the Russian Bear

~ Putin:  'That is a very good impression of Mussolini but you're still a smug yet incompetent lightweight..'

If we were to say that the US is a fascist nation, what would be be talking about exactly?

For many, they hear the word 'fascism' and mistakenly confuse it with 'nazism' but that is not the case.

A 'Nazi-like' government is always going to be fascist BUT a 'fascist' government does not have to necessarily have all that racial/ethnic purity bullshit..

Fascism is the merger of government and private business into one entity where even if it appears they are separate, the government has the power or ability to dictate terms to private businesses large and small on how to run their affairs and make decisions in the best interests of the State vs their own...
To be clear, this is not the same as government passing an environmental or anti-discriminatory law and enforcing it so all comply..

All nations have this power and if they didn't, there'd be no point in government of any kind... 

A better example of why the US is a fascist nation is the following..

Russia wants to sell some bonds and President Obama who seems to have an irrational dislike toward Russia and Putin, isn’t happy about it.
Moscow is looking to issue “at least” $3 billion of foreign bonds in what amounts to the country’s first international issuance since the West imposed sanctions on The Kremlin in 2014 after the legal annexation of Crimea 

In addition, supposedly Russia’s alleged role in “destabilizing” backwards nation and NATO pawn Ukraine (because the religious-ethnic intolerant state was sooo very “stable” before).

Since the sanctions were imposed, relations between Moscow and Washington have only gotten more contentious and when Russia began flying combat missions from Latakia on September 30, 2015, it was trotted out as 'evidence' that Vladimir Putin is indeed determined to reassert Russian influence by sheer force.

Meanwhile, the Russian economy is in trouble. 
Russia isn’t in Brazil-like trouble but times are most assuredly tough. The ruble has plunged, inflation is running high, and collapsing crude threatens to weaken Moscow’s fiscal position.

You didn't think you were getting to drive your car at $1.85 a gal by accident did you?  Someone had to cause the destabilization of oil prices for global strategic purposes..    'Give me an O!  Give me a B!..  Give me an A!....'

All of that is just fine with Washington and its European allies who attribute a large part of the malaise to sanctions even though slumping crude probably plays a larger role.

So it is against this backdrop that Russia is set to sell $3 billion in debt and officials in the State Department and the Treasury are out warning US banks not to underwrite the deal. 
From WSJ:

“The U.S. government has warned some top U.S. banks not to bid on a potentially lucrative but politically risky Russian bond deal, saying it would undermine international sanctions on Moscow.. The rules don’t explicitly prohibit banks from pursuing the business, but U.S. State Department officials hold the view that helping finance Russia would run counter to American foreign policy.”

Russia has invited BofA, Citi, Goldman, JPMorgan, and Morgan Stanley to bid on the business, but Washington’s threats have left the Street in a rather tenuous position - Do the banks do what is best for their privately owned businesses or obey government?

In response to banks’ inquiries as to whether they are allowed to participate, John Kerry’s State Department said this: “It is essential that private companies—in the U.S., EU and around the world—understand that Russia will remain a high-risk market so long as its actions to destabilize Ukraine continue. [There will be] reputational risks of returning to business as usual with Russia.”
By warning of "reputational risks" it certainly appears as though Washington is threatening to ostracize banks that help to arrange deals for the Russian government. 

As Moscow's foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova accurately put it: "The US is trying to intimidate banks on our bonds."

The US not only can sanction whoever they want for whatever reason they wish but turn the thumbscrews to prevent private enterprise from entering business relationships with Russia

The US sure didn't mind all the corporations such as General Electric who had private contracts with Iran for most of the last 15 years while the position of government for most of that time was to issue sanctions.
And yet Russia is to be treated differently..

You'd think there were some assholes in our government including one who sits in the Oval Office who longed for the treasury-draining Cold War days to return!

We're also not entirely sure why the federal government feels like it has the right to dictate with whom private enterprises can do business. 

Besides, if impotently weak John Kerry is really interested in curtailing the financial activities of evil, soulless nefarious actors, he should be warning the Russians not to do business with Wall Street 

Bankers, traders and Investors are much more dangerous than Putin.