I decided to post this short update to let you know that I am trying to take just a little time off to recover from a regular (non-COVID19) flu. Mostly, I am still exhausted and I need to rest a bit. Still, since the world does not stop rotating for yours truly, here area few comments I want to share with you about different matters and I post that here, instead of my weekly analysis, to give these announcements more visibility.
1) Telegram: as I have mentioned in the past, it turns out that a good friend has created a Telegram channel for the Saker blog. All that friend did is to make it possible for Telegram to (almost) immediately post a link and a short blurb for each item we post on the Saker Blog. This is a terrific idea and I want to bring that to your collective attention. But there is more: with this friend we have agreed that from now (well, in the near future) on I will use this official “Saker Telegram Channel” to share quick news, comments, reactions, etc. with you. So please download either the Telegram app (from here: https://telegram.org/apps#mobile-apps) or the Telegram extension (from here: https://telegram.org/apps#web-apps) and sign up to this channel:
One more IMPORTANT thing: I plan to cancel my mailing list, which I very rarely used anyway. If you are on that mailing list, or if you would want to be on it, please now join my Telegram channel which, from now on, will serve as a replacement for my mailing list. So you need to sign up!
I hope that this new capability will prove useful to the Saker Community!
2) Putin: yup, they did it. Courtesy of a constitutional amendment proposed by the first woman in space, Valentina Tereshkova, now allows Putin to run again and, apparently, for as many times as he wants. So what do I think about that? Well, I never liked any term limits, especially not for Russia, but, more relevantly, I think that this is the wrong problem. The real problem is not how many times Putin will be reelected and as far as I am concerned, I would be happy to see him as “President for life”. The real problem is double:
- Putin is a one man show, not a stable system, which is what Russia truly needs.
- There are no viable successors to Putin (at least none that I know of).
And for these two reasons, yes, allowing Putin to run again is the correct decision, but all for the wrong reasons. Generally, the proposed changes to the Russian Constitution are definitely a step in the right direction towards making modern Russia a more viable system, but it is not enough. What Russia really needs is a patriotic opposition and that can only come through new and better (more parties, more new faces) elections.
3) COVID19: I have been following this virus, but I don’t feel that I can say much about it, at least not about the medical aspects. Still, for all those who claim it to be a bioweapon, I very much doubt it. First, modern militaries do not need bioweapons simply because they are very hard to use and because if you get caught using it, you will land in instant political hell. Besides, a bioweapon would have a much higher mortality rate (1%-6% should be laughable for a bioweapon). Many others disagree (see, for example, here: https://saker.community/topic/protocol-non-pharmaceutical-for-covid-19-for-consideration/) so don’t take my word for it. Personally, I am much more concerned about the social and economic consequences, especially while living in the USA whose “healthcare” system is somewhere in between terrible and non-existent. Besides the usual things to stock up on in preparation of social unrest (water, food, meds, guns, ammo, energy, transportation, medical emergency gear such as a CAT (Combat Application Tourniquet), hemostatic powder and bandages, etc.) I would recommend getting the few meds which can be used in supportive care such as Z-paks (for secondary bacterial infections), saline solution (if you know how to administer it), meds which can help your lungs (Colchicine, Ventolin, etc.), Vitamin C and whatever else a person, especially an elderly one, might need in terms of home-based supportive care. Also, check out the Saker Community link above for non-big-pharma options (which I personally neither endorse nor condemn) on how to resist this virus! If breathing becomes a problem, then your only chance is a hospital bed with a respirator. Bottom line: don’t panic, do what you can do, hope for the best and prepare for the worst. And always remember that your best protection is God and your Guardian Angel. Finally, none of that is competent medical advice, this is just what my family did. As they say, YMMV and speak with any medical specialist you trust.
4) Turkey vs Syria and Russia: as predicted, the Takfiri nutcases reject the agreement between Russia and Turkey and now call Erdogan a “traitor”. Which is truly excellent news, not because I want the deal to collapse, but because this state of affairs now sows discord in the Turkey-Takfiri alliance. Reports from the region say that the Turks are pulling their heavy gear back out across the border. This suggests that Turkey is not currently planning to protect the Takfiris. The said Takfiris, however, are still attacking Syrian government forces, unsuccessfully so far. The situation is too new and too fluid to call, but by early next week there will be much more clarity about where this is all headed, by then I hope to have a regular weekly analysis ready. The important thing is that as of *right now* there are no signs of a major flare-up, if something important happens, I will report it here.
5) Biden vs Bernie: in my strictly personal opinion, these two are both frauds. Total frauds. Bernie no less than Uncle Joe. Bernie Sanders is nothing else but a “Clinton Safety Valve” while Biden is just a Clinton front. The only Dem with a brain and a conscience, Tulsi Gabbard, will never be allowed to win the nomination. Sadly, I don’t expect her to run as an independent either (which she ought to do with a guy like Rand Paul as a VP). I know hear rumors about Biden possibly choosing Michelle Obama as VP. If that happens, the chances of civil war (at least in major urban areas) will go dramatically up. Logically, Trump ought to win, but any Trump victory will immediately be rejected by hysterical US pseudo-liberals and, yet again, civil unrest appears to be inevitable. Those of us residing in the USA better make contingency plans.
6) Oil wars: oh the sweet taste of revenge! Let’s see how the Idiot-in-Chief and his KSA nutcase counterpart will deal with Russia now :-) First Russia emerged as a military power, now she is about to start a very different kind of war against the Empire, and simply bombing Russia to smithereens is no longer an option. As I have mentioned it many times, I sure am an economy-ignoramus so don’t take my word for anything related to economic wars, but in my personal ignorance I see prices fluctuating but with a steady downward trend. The only thing stopping that trend now would be some *major* concessions to Russia, but I have a hard time imagining what Russia might want from the Empire (really, think about it – what does Russia want from the Empire in 2020?).
7) My kinda-open-thread thingie: I invite you all to share your comments ONLY on either one of the topics listed above: Saker Telegram channel, Putin forever, COVID19, Turkey vs Syria, US primaries, oil wars. Please do NOT flood the comments section with anything distracting from these topics. If I have time and energy, I might join in :-)
Still, trolls will be purged as usual, so please don’t abuse it.
Now your turn, chime in on any and all of the topics I mentioned.
Hugs and cheers,
UPDATE1: I just forced myself to listen to the Idiot-in-Chief telling us that the US is the greatest nation in the galaxy, it has the strongest economy, the best medical care, the best EVERYTHING!!! Merica’ is the best, rah rah rah. That’s actually scary. In the USA the flagwaving is always in inverse proportion to real achievements or successes. The more they wave them, the worse things are in reality. About the actual measures, I think that the 30 day ban of people and (so he said) cargo from Europe is too little too late, the virus is already all over the USA, and will only further contribute to the social and economic crisis. The exclusion of the UK shows the real motives behind this move: politics. Why? As of March 11 2020, a total of 27,476 people in the UK have been tested for COVID-19, with 460 testing positive for the illness. Six patients in the UK who tested positive for COVID-19 have died (source); not to mention that 27’476 people have been tested from a population of the UK (just under 68 MILLION people). That is not huge, but remember how big Heathrow, Gatwick and the other UK airports are? What about flights from Europe to Canada or Mexico? I also notice that Trump has made no promises about testing kits, ICU beds, respirators or, especially, to the number of beds currently available vs the projected number of critically sick people in, say, 30 days. Frankly, I have exactly ZERO trust in the local, state or, especially, the federal authorities: they are mostly corrupt AND underfunded, they are typically demoralized and fantastically incompetent (just look at the morons, say, the USPS hires, it’s both comical and outright scary). All we can do now is wait and hope that the kind of “federal assistance” we all will get won’t be like during Hurricane Katrina. I am not holding my breath.
BEGIN SILLY JOKE (I think of it as “levity in a time of crisis”)
Finally, my idea of a “brilliant Trump plan”: promise small businesses all sorts of money, but ONLY if the coronovirus is PROVEN to be the cause. Then don’t order “too many” testing kits. If there are too many, seize them in requisitions “to help hospitals” and “to stop Mexicans” or, worse, Muslim (!) from bringing the virus in. No proof, no money. Brilliant no?
Okay, not brilliant. But that is exactly the kind of crap the people of the USA expect from “their” federal government.
END SILLY JOKE
UPDATE2: I just had a great idea: I hope that China (or Russia or, even better, Iran) develop a vaccine (or treatment) and then I hope they agree to sell to the USA, but for a very steep price. Let’s see capitalism do something right (for once!). I am not holding my breath too much here, but hope dies last ;-)
Okay everybody – “see you” tomorrow!