Putin and The Destruction of A Worker’s State

Below is an exclusive video from Russia, with English subtitles, exposing the existence of a palace owned by Russian premiere Vladimir Putin on the coast of the Black Sea. According to the New York Times, this opulent, crime-as-substance cost somewhere around $1 billion dollars. What does this all include?

The ground floor includes a spa, a movie theater, a wine cellar and an outdoor area with fountains described as an “aqua disco.” The next floor up, according to the report, has a larger theater, a casino hall and a windowless hookah lounge with a pole-dancing stage. The report also describes an underground hockey rink, a church, a tunnel to the seaside and a 260-foot-long bridge leading to a teahouse.

And in the text version of the investigation, which you can translate from Russian, you can take a virtual look-around Putin’s classy hookah lounge/private strip club which is beyond sleazy.

This ostentatious temple built to one mans avarice and megalomania is maybe one of the sickest shows that can be conceived by the radical left.

This work of investigative journalism is hosted, and produced by top Russian dissident Alexei Navalny and his associates. The AP describes Mr. Nalvany as…

Navalny, 44, is an anti-corruption campaigner and the Kremlin’s fiercest critic. He has outlasted many opposition figures and is undeterred by incessant attempts to stop his work.

He has released scores of damning reports exposing corruption in Putin’s Russia. He has been a galvanizing figure in mass protests, including unprecedented 2011-12 demonstrations sparked by reports of widespread rigging of a parliamentary election.

And there is another great profile of Mr. Navalny here in the NYT here.

Today, as further reported by the AP, an estimated 15,000 demonstrators gathered in and around Pushkin Square in Moscow to protest the unjust incarceration of Mr. Navalny. They were joined by other protesters across the country standing outside in sometimes -58 F weather. Navalny’s being held on trumped up charges of financial crimes clearly levelled against him as a political hit and and an excuse to imprison him. (The charges brought against him and his brother the European Court of Human Rights have declared unwarranted.) Further, these protests have led to the arrests of more than 3,000 peaceful protesters, many more beaten, by the Russian authorities.

Watch the beatings here:

The breadth and depth of the above investigation is unbelievably expansive. Just scroll through the text, as I did, if you can stomach it, and observe the images , 3-D models, and linked .pdf files of floor plans. Remarkable. This video/text also shows one of the many cases of theft (by the “believed” richest man in the world, according to a Fortune report) from the Russian people by Putin, his cronies, and fellow oligarchs.

Why do I find this so upsetting? Because from the momentous days of the October Revolution of 1917, to the fall of the U.S.S.R. in 1989-1991, there was so much work, sacrifice, and eventual loss of dreams for the creation of a true workers’ state. Now look what it has turned into. A plutocracy where the man with more money than Jeff Bezos or Bill Gates has the people beaten in the streets when peacefully protesting. And just over false charges against a rival who wants the best for everyone.

If I were not Kentucky White Trash, I would like to have the money to visit Russia some day and see all of the great sites: St. Basil’s Cathedral, the Winter Palace, Lenin’s Mausoleum. But I swear to you now and to the day of my death, I would never spend a single kopek in the Russian state because, more than likely, it would end up in one of the chests belonging to Vladimir Putin.

5 New STL Images!

Five new pics for propaganda use (a day late). Thanks!!!

https://photos.app.goo.gl/TUomKrYbsYCMEWC59

Media Post: Why Flee El Salvador, and The French ‘Yellow Vests.”

A short post today with two important video reports from The Guardian and The New York Times showing why Salvadoran migrants are leaving their homes to apply for asylum here in the U.S. (hint: Washington’s crimes), and the latest on the French “yellow vests” movement

NYT: “The Making of a U.K. Millennial Socialist”

Stand with our British sisters, brothers, and comrades!!!

nyti.ms/2GEXexS

Maduro Critic Even Argues A U.S. Coup Attempt is Occurring in Venezuela

A great Democracy Now! interview with a Caracas professor who, though being a Maduro critic, explains how U.S. aid is an attempt to incite the Venezuelan publics support for a Guaido/U.S. coup.

Also explains how U.S. sanctions are true cause for Venezuelan economic crisis.

Plus, for good measure, they have snippets of Trump spewing lies at one of his rallies calling Maduro a “Cuban Puppet.”

www.democracynow.org/2019/2/22/this_is_not_humanitarian_aid_a

Americans Should be Envious: “Why Infants May Be More Likely to Die in America Than Cuba”

nyti.ms/2HieZUR

A great op-Ed by Nick Kristoff at the NYT explaining how, though lacking in first rate medical technology, the infant mortality rates are actually lower in Cuba. We could take away many good practices from the Socialist, island nation so close to our shores.

On Yesterday’s Riot in Baltimore

1430186936_baltimore-riots-poilice– Short Post and Rant:

Yesterday Baltimore’s Finest’s victims of police discrimination and brutality, namely, the poor African-American population of the city’s West End, took a violent stand against their oppressors. And all I hear from yesterday to today is the condemnation of the violent actions and the damage it has done to the movement’s image and goals.

But what about the emotion? What about the anger and the rage? Should it not be expressed through these actions?

When you hear everyone criticizing the rioters’ actions they assume that they are rational actors with set goals and objectives. But they were not rational yesterday. The ages of discrimination against blacks needed to be released, almost as catharsis, by these enraged masses with earned distrust and hatred for the police. Freddy Gray’s death just brought these emotions to the fore.

And as for the request by the Gray family for protests to be quieted for the day in honor of Gray’s funeral was irrelevant. The issue is bigger than Gray’s death. It’s about police discrimination, not just the tragic death of a single person. Gray’s death was just the spark and it is now a raging wildfire.

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Venezuela’s Pres. Maduro Interview and Article

Venezuelan President Nicolas MaduroA great piece in The Guardian on recent Venezuelan unrest with a print and video interview with Pres. Nicolas Maduro.

Maduro claims that the U.S. is almost directly involved with the middle- to upper-class revolt their in an effort to procure Venezuela’s vast oil reserves.

I am not backing that assessment but the U.S. has had a century of destabilizing activity in Latin America. The evidence is clear.

But what is important to take away from this piece, and the protests in general, is that it’s the revolution of the rich. U.S. political assessments of it are wrong. It is not a “Spring” revolt.

Now there are problems in Venezuela, and The Guardian lists them, but they are getting better as The Guardian also reports. It’s like Maduro said in the interview: “What country doesn’t have problems?”

There is no justification in these protests which are a coup attempt to overthrow a democratically elected government without major crime.

Read Here.

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On The Venezuelan Crisis

lead_001A great piece in The Atlantic for anyone who is interested in the current crisis in Venezuela. Author Moises Naim gives a rebuke of the Maduro administration while siding with the protesters in the streets.

But keep in mind the caveat that in the article Naim discloses that he was Venezuela’s minister of trade and industry and director of its Central Bank from 1989-1990. So he may favor the upper/middle class opposition in his arguments.

Read Here.

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Conflict In Kiev

0219_UKRAINE_langMap_web-720A great multimedia-included article in the NYT takes you into the protests, violence, and general disarray occurring right now in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev.

Read Here.

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