Category Archives: Russia

Why Rand Paul?

Viewed from left to right: Rand Paul, Jeb Bush, George W. Bush, Loyd Blankfein, George H. W. Bush, Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton, Barack Obama, Janet Yellen
Viewed from left to right:
Rand Paul, Jeb Bush, George W. Bush, Loyd Blankfein, George H. W. Bush, Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton, Barack Obama, Janet Yellen. Ron  Paul background.

Why Rand Paul?

Why should anyone really consider Rand Paul as a presidential Candidate?

Rand Paul is a conservative. He is the son of long time Libertarian Ron Paul and he is certainly not a main stream Republican. He, like his father, is not very well liked by the Media, and many Republicans consider his views to be too
radical( though not quite as radical as the father’s views.)

For a long time now both father and son have insisted that the lending policies
of the Federal Reserve, and the increasing obligations held by the American people in lieu of the vast expansions of the past twenty years will become an ever greater burden on our liberties. They have opposed everything from our
wars in the Mid East and our unstable relationship with Russia, all the way to
the enormous power now garnered by the NSA under Geoge W. Bush, and maintained by liberal Democrat Obama. They have maintained that all of this vast expenditure is going to place the nation under the increasing control of the
Federal Government and in so doing compromise the freedom of Individual Americans and their communities.

These two, and their affiliates are standing against  the Democratic party, but also against most of the Republican party. They are both,  father and son, outsiders, outlanders to
the two main power broker parties in the nation. They are in some ways  Revolutionaries, rebels with a definite cause.

Yet in their defense, it should be stated that the only real rebellion they espouse is to return the nation back to the constitution, and to the basic individual freedoms there written by the founding fathers.

But in our rather “Liberal” age, they are indeed radical, and they have little support among the mainstream parties. Anything they would try to do, would be difficult, and their struggle will be uphill and difficult even if they should succeed to cast Rand Paul as president. Then again everything has been uphill for them, so they would not feel all that out of character.

Still we should understand, the first thing someone like Rand Paul would do as
president would be to change the Federal Reserve forevermore. The first major assault will be on America’s Bank, and he will there attempt to change the fundamental wealth structure of the nation. This is a big deal, and its radical. So radical that almost no other candidate will even mention any such intent, even as a joke, much less seriously attempt it. But Paul would indeed attempt to bring the Federal Reserve under the full control of the American people, and
the most powerful bank on Earth would probably lose its independence a few months after a Paul victory. There is probably no change more potentially explosive than this. Such a move would probably change the order of the world
as we know it. It would almost overnight take the world to a  firm conservativism unlike any we have seen this century, in fact not since the
Federal Reserve itself was founded in the early 1900’s has there been any kind of fundamental change as what is proposed by Rand Paul.

The United States Federal Reserve is indeed the most powerful bank on Earth, yet it is controlled by a few private independent Bankers with little authority or control vested in the American people whose money the Federal Reserve is actually playing with.

Should Rand Paul succeed in becoming president, we would be looking at nothing less than Revolution. The world’s wealth structure would have major surgery. And Dr Rand Paul is indeed a practicing surgeon as was his father Dr Ron Paul.
They are probably not afraid to cut.

But why now? Why risk supporting Rand Paul who is indeed an outsider and not very likely to have much support from the two main parties? Why risk so radical a change at this time?

The only answer we can give is that the world is in trouble. The real reason its in trouble, in the simplest terms, is because there is too much credit around.

But what’s wrong with too much credit? What’s wrong with a world awash in easy money? What is wrong with lending money around like its thin air?

The short answer is everything!

Too much money creates too much risk

The trouble with lending too much money is that too many things can happen that maybe shouldn’t! Too many risks taken, that perhaps shouldn’t be taken.  As we all are aware in our daily lives, there are some things we just shouldn’t try unless we know that they are reasonably certain to have a good outcome.
But when credit is lenient, too lenient, we can try anything at all, why not, the money’s there, its free almost, since no interest is going to be charged, there is really no reason not to take it, no reason at all not to try the fantasy, no matter
how unrealistic it may be. There is plenty of printed money available, there is little standard of credit to uphold, once you’ve made the first payments, the money’s there, and lots of it, just take it- take the easy money, and if you fail,
no problem just take more where that came from, and hope for the best. As long as there is Federal Bank that is willing to lend money for nothing there is no problem for those willing to take endless risks.

And risk has been taken…for a long long time now, its been taken quite liberally.
Almost without respite. Even when in 2008 we had the gigantic housing meltdown, there was still money available for bailout. And it was taken, and we have taken more and more with no real end in sight, no matter what we hear in
the Media.

However, when money is loaned out, there is a price after all- even if interest rates are zero.

The basic assumption is that any money loaned is going to lead to some betterment of the society in general. Some service, some good product, some
long lasting viable new way of doing things will evolve that is good for the society at large and also profitable to the borrower. And if a new productive service or product is attained-that is long lasting and evolutionary- we call the loan a success. If not, then its a failure. After all if we borrow too much, take too many chances that are not suitable, then of course there is a terrible
danger for ultimate failure. If we are not prudent in our choices, we will soon come to grief, as happened during the housing crisis.

Why Rand Paul?

The now bitter truth is that we have not actually attained much good, or success in the way of the world, yet trillions of dollars have been borrowed world wide, with very little hope of it ever being paid back, or of it ever doing anything of
value for the society at large. Except perhaps to prompt us all to consume far more than we can afford for evermore. Instead of to conserve our resources, which are after all limited by nature, we are instead told to spend everything we
have, borrow all we can, and hope there is a tomorrow to speak of. Yet as we all know, the good Earth provides only so much, and resources have always been limited, and forever will be limited. Conservation, both natural, and
existential, is always part of a realistic equation.

Excess availability of money and/or the desire for that available money also leads to other imprudent actions that can have dire consequences for the vitality of nations, and therefore for the Global community at large.

We have started war after war with that borrowed money too, yet what have
we attained? The world is exploding at the seams with strife and instability. Rancor and discontent are everywhere, even in our own homes. The world is more unstable today than it was 12 years ago when George W. Bush started the Iraq war(though we were all promised peace at the onset of the new Democratic regime that replaced Bush.) Moreover there is very little reason to think, no matter what we hear, that anything is about to get better. The disorder
of Pandora, once let out, is difficult to put back in.

On the “productive” commercial side, we have seen developed and produced endless numbers of gadgets, but what real good has been attained? Billions of gadgets sit on the shelf waiting for people to buy them while they accrue more
and more debt. There is still monstrous unemployment, and under employment, and even those who do turn a paycheck each week find that most of it goes to pay some hidden form of tax or other. We have hundreds of millions of people all around the world burning scores of hours a week checking their Facebook status. Yet these same people can hardly get a word
out to a person standing five feet away while under the influence of the “wire”. There is a price for everything.

We have invested trillions of dollars all over the world, but are we really any better off? Or do we simply owe all this money with very little promise of it ever being returned to the ordinary people from whom it was actually borrowed? All
of this lent out money actually comes from the devaluation of the ordinary person’s currency. Will that buying power ever be returned to the ordinary person from whom it was borrowed in the first place?

We have inflated the population of our nation with millions of people-all because that borrowed money needs to be put to use, “laundered”, but is there really any hope that these people will actually prosper, or that we as a nation
will prosper by those vast, less than legal increases in population size? Or are
we simply seeing more and more debt for our children and their children’s children with no real hope of ever paying it back? We have inflated the world’s economy to levels that probably cannot lead to any real prosperity except for the few who control the flow of money at the pinnacle. Meanwhile the rest of us are expected to pay all this money back-but how? Through all sorts of taxation on our meager earnings?

The present policies only inflate the labor market(as well as the renter’s market) leaving little hope of any real gains in wages for the average person. Meanwhile wherever there is a strong demand for any product, inflation roars
no matter what we are told by the Federal Reserve. Just ask the average person on the street if their paycheck today can purchase what it did even five years ago.

Even a good thing for the mass of people, like oil price reductions has turned to a bad thing. Firstly there is devastation to those actively seeking to increase this most fundamental of resources-for energy is, next to water and food, most fundamental to a “civilized” society. Most of the energy producers borrowed the money to risk exploration. It was freely available so they took the gamble. Yet now these companies have seen their earnings drop by fifty percent in a few short months.  This was the most profitable business in the United States! How can that be good for the general economy?

Even the ordinary automobile driver sees little benefit. How much of any road trip is really dependent on gas prices? Most of the trip, especially if long is mostly dependent on the tolls and taxes on the way. Indeed, even gas prices
have actually gone up(in order to pay the refiners own debt and taxes) and little benefit overall has been gained, or will be gained save but a severe
depletion of our most valuable resource. And be aware…resources are always limited by nature. And indeed, there will come a time of need and privation.

Resources are limited. Always.  What we have used today will not be available tomorrow. That is Nature’s way, and her dictums are inviolable. Today we burn gas that perhaps we do not need to burn. Today’s excesses will almost certainly lead to tomorrow’s privations. This is Natural order, and for us it is absolute in authority.

What this means essentially, is that we are looking at payback in the future, and a long road back to sanity. And it will be painful, of that you can be sure.

We have squandered much, and achieved little. And we owe far more than we can really pay. We are unstable as a Global society, and there is little to suggest that we will be able, under the present system to correct this outlook. For all of us, this is indeed a dire situation as we can see by what is now transpiring all over the world. The growing instability will eventually harm our cause and our economy.

All this was made possible with inordinately loose credit.

The fundamental reason for rebellion is that people find their own personal freedoms restricted.

You see when the central bank prints and lends, by implication it devalues the currency of a nation, therefore ordinary people’s money is worth  less because of the “new” money being added to the existing money supply.  Loose credit policy greatly increases the money supply while not necessarily increasing the actual value of the underlying society(and this “value” is complex and not quantitative, but qualitative.) The Federal Reserve actually stopped reporting the money supply some ten years ago, yet that money supply is really what creates price pressures-especially the new money created does not have the intended effect of positively stimulating the economy. The higher the money supply goes, the weaker is the underlying currency, the weaker the economic power of the individual consumer, or investor.

That means everybody pays for bad loans by having their buying power, therefore their investment power weaken. So essentially people have to work a lot harder to pay for the same thing they could buy yesterday with a lot
less effort! This is also because inflationary policies do not depend merely on inflating production, but also on inflating demand. This is the real motive behind the increase in population through importation of labor.  But increased availability of demand also means increased supply of labor, and a significant additional drop in buying power for the average person is the consequence.  The artificial expansion of labor may increase demand as desired, but it also decreases wages. Therefore demand goes up, but actual purchasing power may not.

Greece is not alone!

Like Greece, we are looking at tens of nations round the world that are faltering, that are buckling under the weight of their loans. One of these is the United States itself..(another is Japan)..oh little is said of it, since it is not really
in the interest of the major news outlets or the stock holders that control the media to advertise the Debt problem, but the debt problem is here, and it is a terrible burden and is the real reason that after all this money has been lent out
at Zero interest all over the world, hardly any good economic news can be found! All sorts of taxes, and private debt payments interfere with the price of purchases and make it impossible to hope for real prosperity for the majority of
people.

The return on all this money lent has been little when we take it as a whole. The added complexity alone is expensive and little mentioned. But it takes a great deal more effort to deliver ten pizzas, than it does two. The society as a
whole must pay for that extra service, and if it is not equipped, it will suffer for it (instead of gaining from it overall as might be expected.) Moreover in order to sustain this system till collapse we will need even more money printed, lent out and borrowed from now on. We will not see the end of this system until it actually collapses under its own weight, under our own feet, and on our heads…..but when that happens…its going to be too late! There are no possible bailouts this time, there is no more credit available should the next crisis appear. When that day comes, and it will eventually, we are done.

This is why we need to consider Rand Paul!

As for Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush, the most likely candidates for the Democratic and Republican parties?…same ole same ole..possibly worse!

What these essentially promise, if you read the fine print, is still heavily dependent on the privately controlled and “independent” Federal Reserve and heavily dependent on borrowed money charged to the public. You cannot continue profitless wars without charging them to the public, you cannot increase the population without charging its added expense to the general public, you cannot increase services(whether good or bad in conception)
without charging that increase to the working public. Essentially these candidates are saying they will continue to allow the Federal Reserve(and the private-“elite”-interests behind it)  to spew out gigantic volumes of money, enriching the few at the top while the rest of the population actually has to foot the bill. But this is not a change- rather this is the “same ol, same ol”.

When we look at all the other candidates what we see is people tied to the same old lending machine that has gotten us to this point in the first place. We see Hillary Clinton with her strong ties to certain sectors of the banking industry, and we see Jeb Bush-George W’s brother – with ties to nearly all the Banking Industry that caused the GREAT RECESSION in the first place. We see the Democrats on the one side promising to continue inflating the population with millions of people while doing nothing to provide a better condition for the people already here…and we see the Republicans who promise us trillion dollar wars to secure our allies’ borders(while opening ours wide open to anyone from anywhere on Earth so they can work for nearly nothing) and then we hear these same Republicans screaming about social disorder while doing everything in their power to continue the social disorder. We see two parties deeply connected to the way things have been for a long long time, and two parties most likely to continue doing business as it has been practiced for a very long time-since their success, as privately sponsored parties, seems to depend on continuing these same policies. We see no possibility of change…everything Hillary
Clinton wants to do is going to require lots and lots of credit from the Federal Reserve and ever more New Debt added to an already prohibitive amount. ……And everything Jeb Bush wants to do is going to require even more new debt than Hillary Clinton’s agenda…and that’s an awful lot of credit and debt to add to our already overwhelming national, state, and corporate debt.

What these main party candidates want is to  continue to expand all over the world, while at the same time fighting wars that are of little real profit to those same people actually footing the bill. Though we talk about the mid east as being oil rich, and therefore deserving of all this military investment,  the truth is there is probably more oil on the American continent than there is in the Mid East. We dont even import any oil from the Mid East! Most of that oil goes to Asia and Europe. There are actually more proven reserves in Canada, Mexico, Venezuela and Brazil than there is in Iraq, Iran, and Saudi Arabia! So what are we doing there exactly?

Why are we spending these massive amounts of money fighting these destabilizing wars in the first place?

Moreover we have brought upon ourselves a real terror threat from these wars that did not exist before. We are now forced to spend trillions of dollars “protecting ourselves” here at home. All the while we ourselves are being spied upon by the NSA, which threatens the very liberty we are supposed to be defending. To say nothing of the increasing amount of tax that we are liable for,
and threatened by. The tax we owe is indeed a “personal” liability. The Lois Lerner case is notable. The Tea party had been singled out as a target. Was this politically motivated? How much more danger are our liberties now subjected to because of this monstrous debt that we all owe? Moreover where is the benefit to all this? How does this benefit the individual tax payer anyway?

The world is today in economic and political disarray. We all owe monstrous amounts of debt and there seems to be little hope of it ever being dissipated without a very definite loss in personal freedom. Where is the logic in all of this? Where in this “world view”,  this “system” , can we see sound, viable policies for the future?

As if that were not enough we are now seeing new war fronts opening in Europe, and Russia to add to the difficulties we are having in South America, and the Mid East! As if dealing with China and Asia, themselves suffering,  were
not enough of a burden,  we have recklessly decided to make Russia an enemy as well! Where is the reason in this? Where is the sound logic in this? How is destabilizing Europe, heretofore our most loyal ally, going to help our cause?

More to the point, all of this is adding to our already heavy burden as private citizens-both economically and politically as we see both our paychecks and our liberties threatened-to say absolutely nothing about the dangers of terrorism.  For what?

We are being burdened for the interests of the few and this burden is not about to cease, but only increase under the policies of the two major parties as they have been sworn to allegiance to the existing private concerns.

Is it time to say Enough is Enough?

Our personal burdens, and liabilities for the future, as Individuals, under the present system are just TOO MUCH! We need some real change…we need someone to come from somewhere else, some other enclave, to give us any chance for real change.

The way to stop this downhill ride is to stop the lax credit, stop the endless supply of easy money and therefore force a more serious consideration of what is feasible, and profitable, and what is not. In essence to make the credit answerable to the people from whom it is really borrowed in the first place.

Yet no candidate is seriously talking about it. All we ever hear are more promises to continue along this present path, and even add to our already nearly unbearable burden. None of the other candidates even discuss the debt, as if it isn’t there at all, as if its not important enough for them to even mention it. But anyone who understands economics understands that it is
important, and if something is not done, we will never be able to overcome our present economic situation. It should be understood that borrowed money automatically adds a potential for general economic contraction at some point in the future, even if it is successful as originally envisioned. Therefore the money that has been borrowed will at some point in time create negative pressure on the economy no matter how much economic velocity is gained.

You cant prosper if everything you buy is taxed ten times before it ever gets to the consumer. You cant prosper if everything you buy is leveraged with the burden of an existing debt. This is the real reason we are not seeing any real change in the economy. No matter how many jobs are created, they will not be prosperous ultimately, if they are created out of nothing but debt, and yet this is the going formula.

Only by controlling the debt can we ever hope to rise above it.

Rand Paul comes from a long line of fiscal “Revolutionaries” willing and able to
actually do what it takes to bring the fiscal, and financial house to order. He derives from the original Tea Party, named after the historical event of the Boston Tea Party of 1773 , where the American colonists rebelled against the British authorities because of too much taxation with very little representation. Rand Paul’s father. Ron Paul, has for decades argued that there is no way to prosper if all we do is borrow gigantic sums of money and pay taxes, though few in the congress, senate or executive branch wanted to listen. Yet, at this point we can safely say he was right. Looking at the present situation, it is unlikely that we are going to overcome these debts with more debt. At some point loose credit policies will have to stop and we will have to begin the long road back to sound economics.

Rand Paul’s Rivals

Rand Paul has supposed rivals of similar tone…but some of his rivals seem to be married to the banks that are the source of the problem. They are not trustworthy because of this. They are not likely to do what they promise because of their strong affiliations to those same forces that
promote loose monetary policy in the first place. Senator Rand Paul, who really is independent of the current power structure  just might do what he says….and that’s a risk worth taking – at least it is for some.

Rand Paul can stop this fiscal circus if he does as he has said he will do, for only Rand Paul realistically has even a small chance of returning the world to some kind of sanity and order because he derives from a political clan that has promised to do this from its inception. Only Rand Paul is suggesting he will take any control of the Federal Reserve. Most of the other candidates have promised us more of the same old debt based civilization with no end in sight to increases in taxation and debt burdens for the American people. Oh they all claim they will lower taxes, but they never actually show us any policies that can stop the bleeding. Rather most of them seem to promise grandiose ideas, but never actually say how the voters will pay for them. Leaving out the unseemly details of having to borrow the money from some bank, that first borrowed money from the Federal Reserve, whose money actually belongs to the voters themselves.

Sure, the public may believe in the verbal promises of the politicians, but where
is the substance, where is the real dedication to change? Anyone can promise to redistribute the debt, and therefore make others pay for it, but who among these promises to do something realistic to end the debt monster?

This then, is Rand Paul, this then is the viable cause for his candidacy.

All these thoughts are really what Rand Paul and his father Ron Paul have been harping at all this time. And what they say is significant no matter where you might stand ideologically. Essentially they are saying there is too much movement, too little care about where the movement takes us, and in the end, it has not taken us where we want to be-instead of looking forward to a prosperous society where everyone can live fully and free, we are for the most part overwhelmed with debt and taxation. More than that,they say, if we continue, it will only get worse, for Corruption knows no bounds. The only way to stop the fundamental corruption of our society is to take its money away-no money no honey!

Sobriety is not easily achieved.

But to be sure, any change will be painful. Perhaps very painful and discombobulating…for the entire world. As with any sudden cessation of a toxic substance, there will be severe withdrawal symptoms and a long recuperation to deal with if indeed credit policies are tightened. But such is the price of sobering up, of getting off the credit wagon.

But It has to stop some time, and the only one talking seriously and realistically about popping  this credit bubble, this “lottery “, winner-takes-all economy is the Senator from Kentucky, Rand Paul.  Yet if we don’t stop, or at least slow the credit , we cant stop the disorder that’s destroying the nation and the world. We cant say NO to stupid ideas that are just not going to work no matter how much money we throw at them until we actually stop throwing money at them. To correct the problems, we have to stop financing their causes. To say you’re going to end the problem while still financing its cause is not a valid argument.

Rand Paul  just might convince this nation, and the world, that something different is possible, something better, if even more difficult. For all the promise, and all the hoopla during the campaigns of 2008 the Democrats failed miserably to deliver any kind of fundamental change, though they had a chance to do so.

Most of the mainstream Republicans are the same stuff as George W. Bush, and for this we need say no more..and we don’t need more of those deceptions as a nation.  For many who have been discouraged by the present policies of the Republican party, senator Rand Paul is the only real alternative left. He’s the only real Revolutionary out there, he is the Rebel Right at its universal best, and this time most of the world may resonate with his cause . He’s the only one who offers any real fundamental change, at the very source of power-the United States Federal Reserve, and for any lack he may have he’s the only one serious enough to do it, and he’ll have to do if we are going to have any
chance going into the future.

This nation desperately needs change….if you
are convinced of that…Rand Paul represents real change in a new and fundamental direction. Sure its a risk(as there is always a risk when tampering with fundamental economic policy)…but sometimes you have to go for the risk if you’re going to have any hope of seeing a better world.

At least this is the “sentiment” I think behind Rand Paul. To be sure he is a severe underdog in these campaigns. And most of his supporters probably know that. The media will almost certainly attack him, and try to make him look
incapable of leading the nation. His fate may in the media spotlight be worse than Hillary Clinton’s when she ran against Obama in the primary, as the media absolutely destroyed her. But Paul also represents a more dynamic constituency, long fed up with the foibles of the ruling parties, and those who pull their
strings-these supporters will likely put up a ferocious fight no matter what the Media does.

One thing is for certain, unless something changes drastically, Rand Paul(or at the very least, his sentiment) is going to be around for a long time-one way or the other.

Is Putin a Monster? Or are we trying to make him one?

Vladimir Putin, Bellicose War-Monger?  Or just doing his duty?
Vladimir Putin, Bellicose War-monger? Or just doing his duty?

Are the Russians the Real Aggressors?

Who is Vladimir Putin?

Putin was born in October of 1952. He is 62 years old.  He was born to a Russian family that apparently knew the pain of World War II well. He had two brothers who were older than he, both dying before the second world war. One of the two, Victor, succumbed to Diphtheria during the siege of Leningrad, the other, Albert died a few months after birth .  Both parents suffered mightily at the hands of the German dictator. Putin’s father, Vladimir Spiridonovich,  was drafted as a submariner, which is about as tough on the nerves as military assignments can get(especially during those times when this technology was new.) He later served as a member of the internal police, demolitions squad and was severely wounded during the second world war at the front.  His mother Maria Ivanova was a factory worker.

His grandparents have no notable history other than what is common for Russians who lived during the very difficult times of Stalin’s rule. However, his maternal grandfather, Spiridon Ivanovanich  was a chef who cooked for Vladimir Lenin’s wife, and on a few occasions for Joseph Stalin. His maternal grandmother died at the hands of German occupiers during the war; his uncles disappeared at the Russian front, events which would not likely have left the boy Vladimir untouched emotionally by the personal tragedy of that terrible war.

Although he was brought up under the communist doctrine on religion, yet, by all accounts Vladimir Putin is a devout Christian, often professing a deep faith in the Russian Orthodox tradition, a religion which particularly emphasizes compassion as the cornerstone of faith. Though his father may have been a “dedicated” atheist who lived under the stern communist apprehension of mass religion, it seems his son Vladimir was perhaps influenced by his mother’s faith which, apparently,  survived the Communists .

As a boy Putin was rowdy, and apparently often tried to emulate a popular screen characterization  of an intelligence officer. Putin quickly learned Judo and other martial arts becoming strong and athletic in the process. This aggressive side of his persona is also quite often made visible by his public demeanor, and it seems the Russian voters are impressed since his popularity is quite high; he seems personally dedicated to law and order, and the Russian people seem to have the same desire-perhaps there they feel they can find individual justice -something elusive in their turbulent internal history. Putin strongly opposes the use of capital punishment though the majority of Russians still want it. (you can find much more about him at wikipedia)

Politics

Putin’s political history is extensive- about the only thing he has done in his life is to serve the public. Of importance is that he was a KGB agent fully aware of the international scope of Russia’s history. Whether he was a great KBG agent is disputed. There were times in his career where he seemed to be a menial stamp jockey for the service. Yet he was fully consumed by Russia’s dealings with the West, and especially on the commercial front.

It is notable that he himself seemed to have no confidence in the old Soviet Union, something which is quite evident in many of his speeches- Putin is no communist, and most probably the exact opposite. Yet he was a loyal public servant all of his life, and walked a very fine line at times between loyalist and traitor.  We should note carefully that he resigned from the KGB when he had realized that they intended to overthrow Michael Gorbachev on the very next day. From this we must conclude that Putin was indeed prone to a democratic Russian state from a very early point in his career, and though deeply loyal to the KGB, he was still able to maintain a personal conscience and an obligation to what he thought was the greater good of the Russian state.

Even after the fall of the Soviet state, Putin maintained his intelligence activities but this time for the purpose of promoting free enterprise.

For a long time he was hired as a front man for the Mayor of St Petersburg seeking to entice western businesses with an appetite for expansion into the new Russian state.  He had gone from an intelligence officer to an international marketing specialist of sorts. Having served in East Germany before its fall he had apparently acquired some skills in the language and customs of Western Europeans and used that experience to help promote closer business ties to the newly capitalist Russian Federation.

Boris Yeltsin’people  saw in Putin a man with the right views at the time, and so assigned him to take a position in the lower level of the government. Placed in the Property Management division, he was charged with the task of transferring foreign property from the former Soviet Union to the new Russian Federation. Thus his knowledge of international affairs and systems was once again put to use; his connections to, and knowledge of western entities also probably increased. Later on he would become chief of the FSB under Yeltsin, which was the new incarnation of the old KGB.

It is quite possible that he never actually left the intelligence field altogether. Perhaps he was charged with more than just transferring property while working at the property office, since his assumption of head of the FSB was abrupt and had little precedence in his career path. He went from property manager to leader of the intelligence service, a long jump so it is possible he was doing a little more than stated for Boris Yeltsin, perhaps listening where ears were needed.

From 1997 on, he rose very quickly through the ranks. He assumed full power after the resignation of President Yeltsin while serving in the less powerful position of Russian prime minister in 1999. At the time Yeltsin was accused of corruption and once again Putin would have to decide between the lesser justice and the greater good.  He quickly cleared Yeltsin from any possible prosecution.

Being that he was present, and probably working in a quasi-intelligence position of sorts at the time, he was able to see first-hand what was needed to bring the Russian system to a better purpose while serving under Yeltsin during the highly volatile period of Russia’s early formation, when corruption was rampant, and almost necessary since laws were not yet clearly established, or prosecuted in the courts.

In a state like Russia at that time, corruption is sometimes the only way to anything even remotely pragmatic, yet Putin seemed from the start inclined to those principles promoted by Gorbachev, Perestroika and Glasnost, openness and free markets, and kept a long eye on the prize of a free and well regulated democracy.

Much like Libertarian Ron Paul is in the United States, an idealist with good intentions, Putin too must have realized that ideals take time and effort to be put into practice, and as Ron Paul has to deal with a sometimes rowdy self serving congress not usually too idealistic, so too Putin had to deal with the Russian body politic which was hardly in a position to be idealistic,  and oftentimes it was easier and less costly in the long run to make do with what was available than requiring immediate change, if even that was  the ultimate objective. While Ron Paul’s ideas are targeted towards an advanced democracy, Putin’s ideas and practice was targeted to a nascent, still forming democracy. In some ways we can think of Putin as the Russian counterpart of an American Libertarian from what we can see. He seems to respect personal freedom for as long as it does not impinge upon the sanctity of the Laws which protect everyone’s freedom. Putin however, is dealing with a very young state, albeit a very old people, and so the problems of personal freedom versus the integrity of the state may be quite different than what a consummate Libertarian might face in the United States.

In a nascent state, that is in the early stages of consolidation, personal power, and reach, as well as immediate force is often the determining factor between success and failure of an implementation. Putin’s connections to the secret service with all its apparent powers must have lent effectiveness to his power of persuasion, especially if he really had been listening and noting all that was said  while at the property management office. Inside knowledge always gets respect in every government, and there is little doubt that he had inside knowledge to leverage his opinions, and implement his strategies.

What is notable in Putin however, and should not be disputed by this time,  is that he really seems to believe in the Free Market system, at least his history, actions and dialogue support this conclusion. But like many Libertarians he feels that this Free Market system-which seeks to be fair to everyone in the market, while giving no one a political advantage- is easily corrupted and that maintaining the Free Market system can only be accomplished by thorough diligence over a very long period of time.

We are not saying that Putin is a Libertarian, but that given time, in an advanced democracy like ours, his fundamental impulse could well evolve in that direction. It is easy to understand his defense of religion, for example, when you consider that under communism it was banned altogether. Putin does seem inclined, despite the bad press in the West, to allow expression, as long as it is not disruptive. He is a staunch conservative by all appearances, at least from our vantage point in the Western hemisphere.

The habit of personal discipline is a trait that takes time to build in any society and only by long insistence can these traits be expected to exist in the Free Market system-you have to train the performers well before they can appear in the circus where their true talents can become visible to all the world-for even freedom must  have form, just as all good games, must have rules.

Battles against the Russian Oligarchy

Putin’s  first major battles were to be with the powerful capitalists,  the so called Russian “Oligarchy” which had laid claim to most of Russia’s wealth, and he was to somehow bring them into law and order however he could. Once again, his experience at the property management office could not have hurt his cause.

A long story short, he cleaned up the Russian Business Oligarchy(in most ways), bringing them under the control of the nation, but at the cost of leaving them with substantial power, money, and influence. The so called “grand bargain” between Putin and the “Oligarchy” left the capitalist elite still very powerful and rich, but managed to channel that power and wealth into the legal system of the nation. Perhaps we should say here that in all democracies there will be those few wealthy elite who direct large sums of money and resources to wherever they have to go,  but making certain that ultimately the nation is enriched by these elite capitalist elements, and not undermined, is an absolute requirement for the stability and vitality of a nation. In the end everyone must serve the nation to some extent, even the elite, and if they fail to do so, they too are ultimately expendable-or they must be rehabilitated, which is what Putin managed to do.

The Russian Federation

Russia has suffered centuries of corruption on all levels, and it was no small task to bring the system into a centralized legal system. Putin’s main objectives here seem again to be the establishment of a working, honest market on the way to an ideal democratic state. However, being pragmatic, or so he seems, there are times when he will himself put into law whatever he feels is needed. For example he did not prosecute Yeltsin on corruption charges probably not so much as an act of loyalty to his former boss, but because it would have consumed too many resources at the time, and the Russian nation was already in deep despair.

At around that same time Putin minimized the power of the various states, making certain that the central government was the absolute political entity in the state, as was the wish of Abraham Lincoln for the United States. On assuming power, Putin very quickly canceled any prior agreements with the federated entities within the Russian state. Putin believed in the absolute authority of the Federal Government and intended to make certain that this power was not in any way usurped or minimized by any particular coalition of Russian states.  In most ways he had little choice but to pull all states to a center authority,  if he was to maintain the Russian state at all, remembering that this state was still in its formative period.

The Russian Federation consists of some eighty smaller states with differing populations and ethnic groups. Keeping a nation like this, with so large an area together,  was not going to be easy under any system other than a strong centralized Union. Any attempts at a true federation would have probably resulted in disaster for Russia,  fragmenting the nation into small unsustainable elements that would have quickly found themselves at war with one another-it would have sent Russia back to the stone age.

His actions in the West

In his dealings with the West Putin has been forthright but tough and pragmatic. If we remove the propaganda that we are daily bombarded with by private interests we see that Putin for the most part was as honest as he could have been.

When it came to Georgia, his partner Dimitri Medvedev chose to invade and occupy two rebellious Georgian states that had declared their independence from Georgia. But the real reason behind this military move, something not usually mentioned in the press,  was that the Georgian president of the time, Mikheil Saakashvili,  began to entertain the notion of making Georgia a part of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization(NATO).  The Russians have in the two world wars lost nearly fifty million lives. There is absolutely no question as to why they would not want a hostile nation on their border, especially since that whole region is unstable and prone to turn against Russia. Allowing Georgia to turn to NATO gives Armenia and Azerbaijan the same right and tendency, something that would get NATO all the way into the Caspian sea from NATO member Turkey.  The Russians were not likely to let that happen as this might entail NATO ships touring the Caspian sea.

This was the strategic reality at the time,  and all one would have to do is look to the history of Russia to see why it is that Joseph Stalin himself decided to occupy many of the Eastern European nations. It is well understood that after the German invasion the Russians wanted a buffer between them and their violent neighbors, the Europeans who have thrice invaded Russia with catastrophic consequences for the Russian people. These historic realities may be softly impressed on Western minds, but its not that way with the Russians, who had to endure those slaughters.

The same pretty much goes for the Ukraine. It is not that Russia wants the Ukraine so badly as it does not want the Ukraine to become a threat to Russia. The idea of Right wing extremists of the same mind as Adolph Hitler creating a nation hostile to its neighbor, and armed and supported by the power and might of the United States and Europe did not appeal to Putin. There is no mystery here. What’s more is that in both cases there was little strategic choice for Putin-either act to stop this before it gets out of hand, or explain to one hundred fifty million angry Russians why a troubled partner and sister nation, as the Ukraine is most often viewed by Russians, was allowed to turn into a hostile threat on the Western border. There was nothing presentable in having right wing extremists establish a threatening nation on the Russian border.

Too often free nations who have internal economic problems produce self serving political elements that get the idea that they can auction off their own nation to the highest military bidder,  using their strategic geographical location as currency.  It was a lucrative idea for Mikheil Saakashvili of Georgia and the right wing extremists of the Ukraine to offer to move their respective nations to NATO with all military benefits, but this was seen as a direct threat by the Russians. It might have even been seen as a direct insult-in the latter case- considering the slaughter endured the last time an extreme right wing government invaded Russia.

The Russians could care less if either the Ukraine or Georgia were to develop economic ties with the West, in all probability they would actually welcome this, but this was not the problem. It was unlikely that the Russians would sit back and allow NATO military ties to develop as the underlying price for the western economic support, and this is exactly why Russia is involved in either of these nation’s internal divisions. It is true that in Ukraine there are ethnic Russians to be considered as well, and some Russian loyalists were also to be found in Georgia(not forgetting that Joseph Stalin himself was from Georgia.) But the true reason for the military actions on these nations is that the Russians considered them a military threat, and a nation that has lost so many lives in recent history would not be expected to tolerate any threats of this kind if they can negate them using careful military interventions. In both cases we can see that the Russians have tried to make minimal incursions with minimal collateral damage.

The truth here seems to be that the present leaders of the West do not know the history of Russia, or don’t respect it, but either way that does not seem to us to be a flaw of Putin’s. The West is plagued through and through with special interests. This is the price that all of us who live in the West pay for freedom. These special interests will often develop ideas and objectives that have little in stride with the common good and very often will  easily sacrifice large portions of a free nation’s wealth and resources to achieve a special objective of interest.

Putin, to his credit, has stood against the unbridled licence given to special interests. He has spoken against it, and has opposed it openly at times. Though the leaders of many nations in the West profess their loyalty and love of the people they are supposed to be serving through representation you would not know this by their actions. Five wars later and the Obama administration is still fighting in the Middle East as if the United States and its people have endless resources to spare so that a few special interests can have their way.

Yet the United States is deeply in debt, its economy is buckling even as the Federal Reserve is spewing trillions of dollars into the economy, though credit is endless and nearly unregulated, and the cost of this, still not visible, is huge and will come to be called up to account in the coming years-you cant just turn the Federal Reserve loose and not have consequences or a price to pay for those actions. Yet we have no end to any of this in sight, rather, there are endless calls for escalation!

These acts of special interests are mostly not in the interest of the American nation as a whole, no more than they would be for the Russian nation if they were taking place there. Yet while Putin, descended from a people having long and terrible experience with the deleterious effects of allowing special interests unbounded free reign with a nation’s policies and economy has taken action both local and global to stop this, while  our representatives are still being chosen by the very same lobbies that are time and again usurping the nation’s objectives, both national and international.

Our own nations in the West, seem to have some serious structural infirmities which all too often lead to uncontrollable urges to act, no matter how inappropriate these acts may be; and its these uncontrollable urges which may be most responsible for Putin’s demeanor towards the West rather than any impulse coming from him or his people.

In the end we cannot fully know what kind of character Putin is, we can only guess, but only advise that our leaders be attentive and cautious, as well as courteous to a man who has so much vested interest in the survival of humanity on Earth. This is common sense. The sad part is that our leaders have often acted as if they were dealing with some school boy in their district. Calls to arm the Ukrainian military are the most immature statements that any elected official can make considering what would happen if the Russian’s were to do the same for our “enemies”.

Putin from all accounts we can see is a technocrat, pro-business, pro-democracy, and pro-world community. However he has an aversion for discordant special interests . So much is nearly certain.

If we treat him with reason, he will probably respond with reason, assuming we are honest about it and self contained. Yes he was once a “snitch” and that is something to worry about. Giving him details about your past personal foibles might not be wise if you meet him.