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#601
Alislaws

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/\ To be fair I liked Phoenix's post because this bit, "How interesting, people already discussing my possible response. But I already said everything I wanted to say in previous posts. You "didn't noticed" them and continue to attribute to me your own thoughts... " is true.

I don't agree with Phoenix's positions 9/10 times given he's a nationalist and I'm an anarchist. But some people here do genuinely ignore him and believe their own propaganda as you pointed out in the absurdity of Putin supposedly being incapable of understanding high school political science.

Of course it was easy to predict his response, as he had already given it before :)

 

 

Yes, some people do believe their own propaganda...

Socialism Chic:

https://thebulwark.com/socialism-chic/

(Too much of a conservative slant for my tastes... but it does raise an interesting point.)

As someone who is not too far from 50 years of age, I have seen Socialism Chic come and go; and all the various flavors of conservatism and liberalism -- and each accusing others of "propaganda".          

 

Interesting article, I think the best bit is this:

 

 

conservatives have spent decades painting mainstream liberals as socialists, if not outright communists...

Such rhetoric was meant to stigmatize Democrats; instead, it ended up weakening the stigma of those labels, just like many liberals’ habit of calling mainstream Republicans racist took the sting out of that label and helped pave the way for Trump. When you cry wolf all the time, all you really do is normalize wolves

 

Although I think the real reason socialism has not been stamped out in spite of the negative examples of people attempting to implement it (or at least claiming that that is what they are trying to do) is simply that the contrast between socialism and capitalism is very simple, and is not really affected by real world events. 

 

Socialism arises from the belief that a group of people, who are altruistic, working together for the good of all will result in the best society we can manage at the moment. 

 

Capitalism is based on the idea that people are incapable of consistent altruism, and so the best way to organise society, is to arrange a system where everyone operates selfishly, for their own benefit, and the system channels this in productive directions. 

 

I personally believe that humans can behave in a consistently altruistic way provided their survival needs are met, and they exist in a society that rewards altruism over selfishness. Which is why effective socialism requires advanced technology and productivity levels high enough to meet everyone's essential needs reliably. 

 

Capitalism encourages selfishness, which is why people seem to get less "honourable" over time, (that and small communities keep people honest, anonymity (of the sort experienced by living in a city of millions) allows people to be assholes and escape consequences...

 

aaand I've gone way off topic, what were we discussing?!



#602
Outlook

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I think everyone should just follow the principle that getting heated on an obscure forum is not worth it, and your real life only matters.


Outlook's secret song of the ~week: https://youtu.be/QAlMaVYIzqw

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#603
Yuli Ban

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post

Another reason why socialism remains in vogue while fascism, monarchism, aristocracy, etc. aren't considered "proper" mainstream beliefs is due to its focus on egalitarianism. Any belief that espouses egalitarianism will be popular with the majority of people and especially in a society that values egalitarianism, such as the West. 

 

Fascism and National Socialism stand against egalitarianism. They espouse that people are fundamentally unequal, that some are better than others, and even that some deserve more than others. Monarchism and aristocracy take this to its extreme by saying there are some families that just deserve to rule and be wealthy on the basis of being of that bloodline, rather than on the basis of any merit or accomplishment.

 

Capitalism is in a sort of Goldilocks Zone for all of this. Adam Smithian capitalism, Georgism, and whatnot even moreso, since they tend towards redistributive/commons-protecting policies. Theoretically, everyone is legally equal in a capitalist society and any inequality is due to peoples' own actions and merits. Obviously this isn't how it works in real life, but capitalists still put forward the ideal that anyone could become a wealthy owner, and it is true: in the USA, for example, you're not prevented from becoming wealthy because you were born a certain way— the capitalist elite can't simply take your wealth away or prevent you from becoming one of them just because you were born a certain race, gender, religion, ethnicity, or nationality. Hell, these days, they'll celebrate you entering their ranks if you're not a cishet Anglo-European male. For the elite, it's very egalitarian. It's just much more difficult in certain situations, often due to institutional biases and systemic flaws. 

 

In a fascist or aristocratic society, only the Party, the Party's preferred group, or the nobility could become wealthy and privileged. It enforces unfairness as a principle.

 

Socialism— which goes that no group should become rich off the labor of others— posits that capitalism is still anti-egalitarian because property owners have to exploit others' labor to become wealthy (you can't run a massive corporation on your own labor, after all; it's physically impossible) and private property is theft from the commons. From there, of course, there's still plenty of variation in how to go forward with it, but socialism is at its purest when pursuing communism. And this is why socialism and communism often have to be shown in relation to Stalinism, Maoism, Khmer Rougism, and whatnot (aka the "socialism in practice" argument)— these examples all saw inequality in society, or they presided over periods where the quality of life for the masses dipped in tandem (i.e. "everyone is now equal—ly poor" argument).   

 

Nevertheless, people are still attracted to socialism and always will be as long as egalitarianism is popular and promoted in society. Hell, even when it's not actively promoted as a cultural more, it's still sometimes sought because solving unfairness is a universal desire. Not even among humans, but among primates in general.


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And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future.


#604
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Yes, some people do believe their own propaganda...

Socialism Chic:

https://thebulwark.com/socialism-chic/

(Too much of a conservative slant for my tastes... but it does raise an interesting point.)

As someone who is not too far from 50 years of age, I have seen Socialism Chic come and go; and all the various flavors of conservatism and liberalism -- and each accusing others of "propaganda".

 

The left has biases I agree completely. One of the most glaring ones is that the left often ignores the subjective needs of white men pushing them away. 

And propaganda actually exist on all sides and the ability to not get up in it is important. You can't just act as if you're completely immune to it and brush off everyone's claims as "all sides accuse each other of propaganda." You posted this.

 

Basically, Putin and his circle always seem to think the president has more power than he does -- they think he can just pick up the phone and tell congress what to do. The system in the U.S. doesn't work like that. The "checks and balances" are real; and different parts of the government have the power to effectively resist the president, and cancel his orders.

 

How is that not cartoonish? As Alislaws pointed out the head of a state like Russia with teams of analysts and advisors is not going to be so dense that they can't comprehend high school political science. Your statement was clearly painting Putin's administration as less competent than a high schooler which is ludicrous. I'm not saying you have to agree with Putin, I don't. But any strategy that treats the adversary like incompetent morons, even though incompetent morons wouldn't have been able to oppose the U.S to begin with, will fail. 

 

This reminds a lot of how Europeans viewed the Japanese prior to their victory over Russia in the Russo-Japanese war of 1905. Those "monkeys" can't defeat a European country in open war. They're inferior. They can't comprehend our strategic expertise. They can only emulate it. Then the Japanese sunk the Imperial Russian Pacific Fleet in the Battle of Tsushima and dominated the field on land. The Europeans were completely blinded by their own arrogance and they would continue to pay for it as their colonies were conquered all the way up until America and the USSR defeated the Japanese Empire in 1945.

 

Those Russians can't understand what even our children can. Hah, what idiots. 


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Current status: slaving away for the math gods of Pythagoras VII.


#605
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How is that not cartoonish? As Alislaws pointed out the head of a state like Russia with teams of analysts and advisors is not going to be so dense that they can't comprehend high school political science. Your statement was clearly painting Putin's administration as less competent than a high schooler which is ludicrous. I'm not saying you have to agree with Putin, I don't. But any strategy that treats the adversary like incompetent morons, even though incompetent morons wouldn't have been able to oppose the U.S to begin with, will fail.


You're completely wrong, again.

Look at Trump, and all the moronic decisions he makes. Yet, he has all the advisers in the world. How could he make such stupid errors?

Or look at Climate Change action. You would think they would take it more seriously, but they don't.

The world doesn't work the way you think it does. The people in charge aren't that competent, and don't always listen to the good advice. 

 

And Putin has been compared to Trump, by Masha Gessen.  "Weaponized incompetence":

 

https://www.newyorke...ng-incompetence

....

I have had my own advisory role for the government, serving on a few panels. Often, one doesn't have perfect expertise about the thing one is passing judgment on -- and there isn't time to read all the information super-carefully. It's a miracle that the system works halfway decently.



#606
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Russia's Natural Resources Make Up 60% of GDP

 

 

Russia’s Natural Resources and Environment Ministry estimates that the combined worth of the country’s oil, gas and other resources amounts to 60 percent of its gross domestic product, the RBC news website reported on Thursday.

 
As one of the world’s top producers of natural gas and oil, Russia’s economy is heavily reliant on exports of its resources.
 
These resources added up to a combined 55.2 trillion rubles ($844.58 billion) in value as of 2017, or 60 percent of Russia’s GDP that year, RBC reported.
 
The Natural Resources and Environment Ministry estimates the value of 9.04 billion metric tons of oil reserves at 39.6 trillion rubles. The 14.47 trillion cubic meters of gas reserves cost 11.3 trillion, the ministry is cited as saying.
 
Russia’s 1,407 tons of gold and 375 million metric carats are worth a respective 480 billion rubles and 505 billion rubles, the figures say.
 
This is the first time Russia has officially estimated the value of all its resources and these figures are expected to be updated annually, the outlet reported.

 

https://www.themosco...-reports-a64800



#607
PhoenixRu

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Russia's Natural Resources Make Up 60% of GDP

 

Where did they get this? Probably "make up 60% of export revenues"? The real stucture of Russian GDP (in 2017, but i don't think there were significant changes since then):

 

4% - agriculture

10% - mining industry

16% - manufacturing industry

3% - housing and utilities

8% - construction

17% - wholesale and retail trade

9% - transportation and communication

33% - other

 

24-04.jpg

 

This picture is a bit outdated (2012) but again, there were no significant changes since then. Share of oil export in country's GDP:

 

365px-%D0%94%D0%BE%D0%BB%D1%8F_%D1%8D%D0



#608
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Russia Ditches Real Income Data That Has Slumped for Five Years

 

 

Russia will stop publishing monthly data that’s shown a slump in disposable incomes for five straight years after the indicator was criticized for using methodology that’s decades out of date.

 
The Federal Statistics Service will start releasing quarterly income data starting next month and historical numbers will be recalculated going back to 2013, head Pavel Malkov said at a briefing with journalists in Moscow. The new methodology will include data on online sales and sales from smaller retailers among other things, he added.
 
“We must admit that when we calculate monthly data, a significant part of the information is missing, so it’s modeling,” Malkov said. “Sometimes the data raises serious questions.”
 
Incomes have declined since 2014 amid a rise in retail sales, prompting many analysts to question the reliability of the underlying data. Moscow-based VTB Capital published a three-page research note earlier this month criticizing the outdated methodology and recommending that economists disregard the income data entirely.
 
The statistics service comes under regular fire for the quality of its data, especially after growth numbers for 2018 released last month massively outstripped economist estimates. The Economy Ministry took control nearly two years ago and Malkov, a former economy ministry official, was appointed head late last year to address issues including the collection of primary data.

 

https://www.themosco...ve-years-a64877



#609
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Russia Ordered a Killing That Made No Sense. Then the Assassin Started Talking. - The New York Times

https://www.nytimes....in-ukraine.html

#610
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Kremlin doubts figures showing Russians too poor to buy shoes

 

 

The Kremlin press secretary has said he cannot understand a survey that shows that Russians struggle to afford new shoes.

 
Dmitry Peskov was commenting on a report by state statistics agency Rosstat.
 
It found that a third of households polled could not afford two pairs of shoes per person, per year.
 
The data also revealed that 80% of Russian families found it difficult to make ends meet.
 
The survey actually indicates a slight improvement in some areas of family finances. But its stark headline figures - and Mr Peskov's annoyance - have captured attention, suggesting that officials are out of touch with everyday reality.
 
Asked to comment on the findings, President Vladimir Putin's spokesman sighed deeply before saying that the Kremlin "struggled" to understand the data.
 
"Why shoes? Why one third? Where are these figures from?" Mr Peskov asked, adding that he would be "grateful" for an explanation from Rosstat.
 
The details are clearly available online, alongside the agency's "monitoring of living standards" survey, conducted every two years. The latest figures are from a poll conducted in September 2018 which covers some 60,000 homes across the Russian Federation.
 
Amongst its findings, the survey reveals that close to half of all households cannot run to a week's annual holiday, even staying with friends or family. About 10% of those questioned could not afford to eat meat or fish three times a week, and 12.6% of homes either shared a communal toilet or had an outside loo.
 
In rural Russia, where many village homes still have an outhouse, that figure is above 38%.
 
The Kremlin's irritation with the statistics partly stems from an awareness that economic difficulties now present a significant challenge to President Putin. After overseeing a period of economic growth during his first terms in office, fuelled by high oil prices, Mr Putin's approval rating has fallen as Russian families live through a fifth straight year of shrinking incomes.

 

https://www.bbc.com/...europe-47800419



#611
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https://www.salon.co...lp-elect-trump/

 

Russians targeting Bernie Sanders voters

 

Why?  Won't Sanders treat Russia right?

 

Maybe they think Trump will be a better ally.  Some speculation:  Bernie might lift sanctions and/or make life easier on Iran and Venezuela, which will unleash more of their oil onto markets, reducing its price, and leaving Russia with less income.  Faced with a potential demographic problem of too many people retiring early, and not enough $$ to pay benefits, Putin will be blamed; and some super-rich Russians will make less money from oil -- their personal fortunes will suffer.

 

If Bernie is elected, it will set off a chain of dominos falling, that will be a disaster for the powers that be in Russia.

 

Like that theory?


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#612
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/\ It also makes sense to me that nationalists arn't too fond of social democrats in general.


Current status: slaving away for the math gods of Pythagoras VII.


#613
PhoenixRu

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Kremlin doubts figures showing Russians too poor to buy shoes

 

Well, I'm on side of Kremlin here...



#614
wjfox

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Robot news presenter causes a stir on Russian TV

 

18 April 2019

 

Russian state news channel Rossiya 24 has introduced a robot presenter for some of its bulletins.

'Alex' has already caused a stir, with some viewers complaining about his appearance and accusing him of peddling political propaganda.

The robot was developed by Promobot in the city of Perm. His silicon head is modelled on the face of the company's co-founder Alexei Yuzhakov.

At the moment, the robot anchor can only move his facial features and neck.

However, the final robot will have fully mobile limbs as well.

 

https://www.bbc.co.u...nology-47981274

 

 

_106507987_robot123.jpg

 

 

 

 

Edit:

 

Found a video –

 

https://youtu.be/3RL8whGc-xQ



#615
Sciencerocks

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Norway finds 'Russian spy whale' off Arctic coast

Source: BBC


A beluga whale found off Norway's coast wearing a special Russian harness was probably trained by the Russian navy, a Norwegian expert says.

Marine biologist Prof Audun Rikardsen said the harness had a GoPro camera holder and a label sourcing it to St Petersburg. A Norwegian fisherman managed to remove it from the whale.

He said a Russian fellow scientist had told him that it was not the sort of kit that Russian scientists would use.
Russia has a naval base in the region.

The tame beluga repeatedly approached Norwegian boats off Ingoya, an Arctic island about 415km (258 miles) from Murmansk, where Russia's Northern Fleet is based. Belugas are native to Arctic waters.

 


_106639600_whaleindexevn.jpg

Read more: https://www.bbc.com/...europe-48090616


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#616
Sciencerocks

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Moscow plane fire: At least 13 killed on Aeroflot jet

Source: BBC


At least 13 people were killed after a Russian plane caught fire mid-air before making an emergency landing at a Moscow airport.

Videos on social media showed passengers using emergency exit slides to escape and run away from the burning Aeroflot aircraft.

Russian news agency Tass said two children were among the dead.

One witness though said it was a "miracle" anyone escaped, which was reportedly carrying 78 passengers.

 

Read more: https://www.bbc.co.u...europe-48171392



#617
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Russian president Vladimir Putin recently spoke publicly about the threat of nuclear war and argued that the world has gotten more dangerous.
 
Putin naturally has a Russian worldview. For Russia the world is, in fact, getting more dangerous. NATO has expanded into Eastern Europe, the countries that form Russia's western buffer (Ukraine, Belarus, and Moldova) are destabilizing, and jihadist movements have spread from the Middle East into the Russian Caucasus.
 
As the world gets more dangerous for Russia, Putin must make Russia appear as intimidating as possible. Similar to when an animal is backed into a corner, it hisses or makes itself look big in the hope of warding off enemies.
 
Part of this involves restoring the image of Russia being the Soviet Union, a superpower that was feared partly because of its nuclear weapons. But Russia today is just a shadow of its former self and much has been learned about nuclear weapons since the Cold War.
 
By warning about nuclear conflict, Putin is trying to replant that fear of the Soviet nuclear threat while at the same time laying blame on any such escalation on the US.
 
But the threat of nuclear war has greatly diminished. Russian and American-backed forces have clashed in the war in Ukraine. Not even during the Cold War was there an armed conflict happening so close to the Russian frontier. Yet nuclear weapons have never been an issue there. Despite engaging in numerous skirmishes (including one earlier this year) India and Pakistan, both nuclear powers, have never escalated any conflict very far. Even North Korea, which is often viewed as having a wild regime, has been very careful not to push its nuclear program too far and provoke a military response by the US. 
 
After having been on the brink during the Cold War, the world has gotten a lot wiser about the use of nuclear weapons.  Every country that possesses these weapons today knows that their military use would equate to national suicide. So instead of using them in war, governments are using nuclear weapons as bargaining chips, and as a way to shape expectations. 

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#618
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Russia still has a substantial military --- it has been building up in recent years. It may not be on par with the US, but it's still strong compared with its neighbors. The problem for Russia is that many of these countries are tied into military alliances that are hostile to it, and any action could provoke a dangerous response from foreign powers such as the US.
 
In particular, a military alliance is forming between countries in the Intermarium (the Baltic States, Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, and Romania) to counter Russian expansion into Western Europe. The Americans have been heavily backing this alliance. Just this week, the Trump administration agreed to send more troops to Poland and to possibly set up a permanent military base there. At the moment, the alliance remains informal, but it's still growing.
 
By igniting the fear of a nuclear threat, Russia hoped to keep foreign powers from pushing too far and to keep some of the countries on its periphery firmly within its orbit. But the US has only toughened its stance against Russia. Belarus, of all countries, has started to court with the EU and NATO. So that tactic doesn't seem to be working well.


#619
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U.S. Escalates Online Attacks on Russia's Power Grid

Source: New York Times


The United States is stepping up digital incursions into Russia’s electric power grid in a warning to President Vladimir V. Putin and a demonstration of how the Trump administration is using new authorities to deploy cybertools more aggressively, current and former government officials said.

In interviews over the past three months, the officials described the previously unreported deployment of American computer code inside Russia’s grid and other targets as a classified companion to more publicly discussed action directed at Moscow’s disinformation and hacking units around the 2018 midterm elections.

Advocates of the more aggressive strategy said it was long overdue, after years of public warnings from the Department of Homeland Security and the F.B.I. that Russia has inserted malware that could sabotage American power plants, oil and gas pipelines, or water supplies in any future conflict with the United States.

But it also carries significant risk of escalating the daily digital Cold War between Washington and Moscow.

 

Read more: https://www.nytimes....ussia-grid.html



#620
PhoenixRu

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Not such a big news, but may be interesting for those who believes in "backward Russia can only produce oil and vodka" stereotype.

 

Nothing special, just "Storm-600" - the AI-driven solar-powered hovercraft with unlimited power reserve. Currently being tested in Neva river. Will be used as search/refueling/patrol boat or (hypotetically) as command center for lesser drones:

 

26945571.png

 

Link (in Russian)


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