Source – off-guardian.org
- “…But you don’t have to take his word for it: What do ordinary Russians think? Does Russia have oligarchs, and are they involved in political decision-making? A poll from December 2018 found that 94% of Russians were certain of the presence of oligarchs in their country. Only 9% of respondents believed these businessmen used their wealth, influence and power in positive ways”
SM:…If anyone believes there’s a dime’s distance between the level of ambition, manipulation & gregarious greed of Western Oligarch’s Verses Eastern Oligarch’s – they’d be wise to reference the decade’s old purchase order….The system (…both in fact) been bought & paid for & they have the receipt to prove it….
They have oligarchs. We have socially responsible entrepreneurs.
Thomas Röper’s “war of the systems” seems a bit fishy
(Also Read: What makes an Oligarchy and why isn’t it extinct yet? @ https://canadianpatriot.org/2023/01/25/what-makes-an-oligarchy-and-why-isnt-it-extinct-yet/)
The world’s benevolent captains of industry gathered in the Swiss Alps last week to discuss tax-extraction schemes and other sustainable ways to make life intolerable.
This Tony Blair guy is a real jerk. https://t.co/KReb8KJhOi
— Edward Slavsquat (@RileyWaggaman) January 19, 2023
All the famous space lizards were in attendance, except for the Russian ones, who were blacklisted by the World Economic Forum last April.
As expected, Thomas Röper, curator of German-language Anti-Spiegel, announced that Russia’s exclusion from SchwabCon 2023 was ultimate proof that Moscow “opposed the West’s plans with all [its] might.”
“The WEF meeting in Davos shows the front line in the war of the systems,” Röper wrote.
What are these two distinct systems, purportedly locked in mortal combat?
The western system is an oligarchy controlled by unscrupulous, conniving fat cats; in sharp contrast, the Russian system is run by a sovereign government that doesn’t allow oligarchs to make political decisions.
Think what you will of Russia’s and China’s political systems, but one thing is clear: they want the political decisions not to be made by oligarchs, but by governments. Putin very quickly broke the power of the Russian oligarchs after taking office more than 20 years ago …
Russia is about building a world order in which people are allowed to get rich but have to stay out of politics, while politics in the West has long been dominated by oligarchs, their foundations and lobbyists …
In fact, Vladimir Putin “offers the world an alternative to neoliberal globalism”—an offer that you can read more about if you buy Röper’s new book, Putin’s Plan.
Okay, first of all: “Western democracies” are at the mercy of unhinged oligarchs—yes, I fully agree. 100%.
It is also true that western governments and their stenographers in the trusted corporate media use flowery language when referring to homegrown oligarchies.
Confused by the language MSM uses to describe Russia? Here’s a cheat sheet: pic.twitter.com/mNLF4hzrc2
— Wyatt Reed (@wyattreed13) November 28, 2022
But to deny the existence of oligarchic power in Russia…Yeah, no. Lost me there.
Coincidentally, on January 17—a day after Röper insisted that unlike the West, Russia wasn’t tormented by parasitic oligarchs—Russian outlet Nakanune published a story about Russia’s parasitic oligarchs.
State Duma deputy Mikhail Delyagin told the outlet:
The funds accumulated by the oligarchs allow them to maintain both influence and start new projects. Therefore, to say that the time of the oligarchs is over is a very naïve statement, or designed to distract attention from the real problems of Russia related to the dominance of the oligarchy.
I just want to reiterate that on January 16, Thomas Röper claimed oligarchs didn’t exist/had no power in Russia; and 24 hours later, a State Duma deputy warned of the “dominance of the oligarchy” in Russia.
(During peak Virus Tyranny in autumn/winter 2021, Delyagin spoke openly about how the “pandemic” was being used by Russia’s “feral oligarchs” to consolidate power.)
But you don’t have to take his word for it: What do ordinary Russians think? Does Russia have oligarchs, and are they involved in political decision-making?
A poll from December 2018 found that 94% of Russians were certain of the presence of oligarchs in their country. Only 9% of respondents believed these businessmen used their wealth, influence and power in positive ways.
(Earlier in the year, Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich channeled Gogol when he declared: “I don’t think we have oligarchs, this is the concept of the 1990s. Now we have good, hard-working, socially responsible businessmen who take care of the country and earn money doing responsible business.”)
As for Putin’s crusade against neoliberalism: A survey conducted by the Levada Center in April 2020 determined that 38% of Russians thought Putin primarily represented the interests of oligarchs, bankers and big businessmen.
(I’m sure you’d get a similar figure if you asked Americans about their own government, the difference being that half of respondents would accuse the “DemoRATS” of being errand boys for oligarchy, while the other half would insist the “ReTHUGlicans” were corporate bootlickers. As it turns out, both sides are correct, but they still hate each other and refuse to cooperate—what a magnificent scam!)
But forget about Delyagin and the public opinion polls. Just look at what is happening right now in Ukraine.
Yevgeny Prigozhin—a tycoon with close ties to Russia’s president—has his own private army of convicted felons, which is in open competition with the Defense Ministry for resources and clout.
Is it even possible to be more neoliberal than that?
Sure. What about trading 100+ Azov fighters (including senior commanders) for an oligarch (and also close Putin pal) who may have single-handedly sabotaged Russia’s “special military operation”?
Official prisoner exchange details, as stated by the Head of the Presidential Administration Andriy Yermak.
– 200 Azovstal defenders (108 servicemen of Azov) for Viktor Medvedchuk
– 5 Azovstal commanders for 55 Russian POWs#UkraineRussiaWar
— MilitaryLand.net (@Militarylandnet) September 21, 2022
As an added bonus, a Russian oligarch came to the rescue of foreign fighters “sentenced to death” by the DPR, and like a true gentleman flew them to safety in his private oligarch jet.
“He went over to him on the plane and asked where he was from and Roman said ‘London’.
“Then Shaun said, ‘You really look like Roman Abramovich’ and he replied, ‘That’s because I am him, sir’. He couldn’t believe it.https://t.co/j3AkdKCkuB
— max seddon (@maxseddon) September 23, 2022
Oligarchs aren’t involved in “political decisions” in Russia? Are you sure about that, Röper?
It seems appropriate to recall the prophetic words of murdered Lugansk rebel commander Aleksey Mozgovoy:
I’d like to appeal to everyone who is fighting—on both sides. People on both sides are fighting against the oligarchy. But somehow we only kill each other, ourselves. So we’re committing a slow suicide of sorts.
The “gladiators” need to break out from the “Colosseum”. Instead, a new Colosseum is being organized. We’re burying ourselves. Do we need it all? War for the sake of war? It’s stupid.
Does anyone remember why we have rebelled? Isn’t it clear that the ones we rose up against are ruling us now? For both sides. Isn’t it time for us to come to our senses, military gentlemen? Otherwise, there won’t be a single one of us left.
And the ones we should be fighting against…they will be living on. Without problems. And everything’s going to be as it was before.
If only Mozgovoy were alive today.
Instead we’re stuck with Röper; not the “Russia expert” we need, but probably the one we deserve:
The West has deadly genetic injections, while Russia has a safe and effective vaccine.”
The West will use CBDCs to usher in a totalitarian dystopia, while the digital ruble will be completely voluntary to use.”
The West is ruled by oligarchs, while Russia doesn’t allow rich people to get involved in politics.”
Yes I see very interesting, danke schön.
Riley Waggaman is your humble Moscow correspondent. He worked for RT, Press TV, Russia Insider, yadda yadda. In his youth, he attended a White House lawn party where he asked Barack Obama if imprisoned whistleblower Bradley Manning (Chelsea was still a boy back then) “had a good Easter.” Good times good times. You can subscribe to his Substack here, or follow him on twitter or Telegram.