FAO Mr Robin Hood
Well , this of course is what you do. I refer to it as "bludgeoning", having borne witness to it so many times
You bury everything in ever decreasing, hair splitting and obfuscating detail until the person you're engaging with dies of exasperation and disappears. This, in your parlance, is referred to as "shooting them down". The reality though is anything but. I did LMFAO (as they tend to say around here) at your earlier comment about my having "fixed views"
What's that word? In all of the people I have come across in 10 years of Forum activity you are without doubt the most intransigent I have ever had the pleasure to meet. I don't recall you changing or modifying any of your views on anything. Not one iota. Ever. In fact, I always thought you were quite proud of it.
Here we have an article cut n pasted from one of your favoured, rabidly anti-West websites. It's written by quite a young man who turns out to be Deputy Editor of a Moscow based news outlet "Russian Insider
". Even a cursory glance at their output reveals two things. It's stuffed with virulently anti-West articles (mostly the USA) and supportive of Russian views, but then, as it operates from Moscow it really isn't likely to be anything else, is it? Unlike your other sites which mostly pour out their anti-West stuff whilst safely ensconced, free to operate unhindered and actually do OK for themselves, from the very place they so obviously despise. Well, come to think of it, that sums you up perfectly!
You can't seem to appreciate the irony of such organisations producing material from that situation which is in support of countries where they would be jailed - or worse - for even attempting it. So, your earlier scathing taunt about Paphitis saying it was propaganda? Well, he would have been spot on I reckon.
The idea being inferred in the Op is that a large cut in the Russian defence budget is some sort of magnanimous peace gesture. That's total rubbish.
Despite your upbeat analysis the reality is that the Russian economy has been tanking (excuse the pun) since 2014. Principally due to a huge drop in the price of oil and Western sanctions.
Russia's overriding profit maker has been oil, which alone accounted for 68% of total exports. They ain't got an Apple, Intel, Google, Oracle, Boeing, GM, et al. A global glut of oil and the advent of fracking have severely depressed the price and the present outlook is that there will be little change in the foreseeable future. The combination of that and Western sanctions have seen Russian GDP and the international value of the Rouble drop precipitately.
Cuts to the defence budget reflect those realities. If people are inclined to believe it's a big olive branch being held out then they should go to bed early and wait for Santa and the Tooth fairy.
As far as your comments on the military aspects go. I know you are one for becoming an "expert" on such things, from behind your keyboard but perhaps Members will indulge me. I have (you know what's coming
) got over 30 years experience in the field, much of it relating to Soviet weapon systems. A small contemporary example. I was on the first crew to meet the Kuznetsov when it exited the Turkish straits in 1991 to head for the Northern Fleet at Severomorsk. We shadowed her all the way through the med and out into the Atlantic from Akrotiri, Sigonella and Gibraltar. Whilst you could no doubt blag convincingly after a few hours of tapping away I have probably forgotten more about that ship than you would (think you) know.
Given what's happened since the Soviet Union fell you will find that not an awful lot of their equipment inventory has changed if you look at the resource count. So, I think your punchy take on it is ............................... seriously flawed.
It's not about "superiority" but hard-headed common sense (do the math) as opposed to some sort of hero-worship on your part.
As far as the development of what would clearly be war-winning weapons systems by the Russians goes? I find it both a funny, comic book idea and also wonder why having developed such world beating equipment they would openly use it in some sort of ridiculous cowboy, boasting exercise. Don't you find that a little odd?
Even if true though - we still have Kryptonite of course.
RUSSIAN ECONOMIC FIGURES
.........................2011 2012 2013 2014 2015
Population (million) 143 143 144 144 144
GDP per capita (USD) 13,192 14,28 15,340 15,390 8,181
GDP (USD bn) 1,886 2,048 2,204 2,212 1,176
Consumption (annual variation in %) 6.8 7.4 4.4 1.5 -9.6
Investment (annual variation in %) 10.2 6.0 0.9 -2.6 -7.6
Industrial Production (annual variation in %) 5.1 3.4 0.4 1.6 -3.4
Retail Sales (annual variation in %) 6.9 6.5 3.9 2.7 -9.7
Unemployment Rate 6.6 5.5 5.5 5.2 5.6
Fiscal Balance (% of GDP) 0.8 0.0 -0.7 -0.6 -2.8
Public Debt (% of GDP) 9.5 10.5 11.4 13.2 13.6
Money (annual variation in %) 22.3 11.9 14.6 2.3 11.5
Inflation Rate (CPI, annual variation in %, eop) 6.1 6.5 6.5 11.4 12.9
Inflation Rate (CPI, annual variation in %) 8.4 5.1 6.8 7.8 15.5
Inflation (PPI, annual variation in %) 12.0 5.1 3.7 5.9 10.7
Policy Interest Rate (%) 5.25 5.50 5.50 17.00 11.00
Stock Market (annual variation in %) -21.9 10.5 -5.5 -45.2 -4.3
Exchange Rate (vs USD) 32.02 30.48 32.73 56.26 72.88
Exchange Rate (vs USD, aop) 29.67 30.36 30.03 35.24 68.73
Current Account (% of GDP) 5.2 3.5 1.5 2.7 5.9
Current Account Balance (USD bn) 98.8 71.3 34.1 59.5 69.6
Trade Balance (USD billion) 197 192 181 190 149
Exports (USD billion) 515 527 522 498 341
Imports (USD billion) 319 336 341 308 193
Exports (annual variation in %) 31.3 2.3 -1.1 -4.6 -31.5
Imports (annual variation in %) 29.7 5.4 1.6 -9.7 -37.4
International Reserves (USD) 499 538 510 385 368
External Debt (% of GDP) 28.9 31.1 33.1 27.1 43.9
Less imports = people eating Quark instead of Camembert - throughout the entire consumer range of products.
The US exported 25 million tons of grain in 2016. It's imports from the entire World were 3.5 million tons
I don't want to provide a platform excuse for another "debt" and "money creation" post but have the gut feeling that printing huge amounts of Roubles would have the effect of turning it into international toilet paper.
Then there's another Paphitis taunt. Ahhh, the good ole days - ehh? Ohh, how much you so obviously miss him.