Originally published on Sep. 6, 2022 by TraderStef at CrushTheStreet
While the western United States bake in another heat wave with relatively affordable but inflated prices for gas and electricity compared to Europe via hydrocarbon-based power that’s taken for granted with EVs and air-conditioned flats, European Russophobic lords are unabashedly guiding the sanction-driven train wreck and arrogantly blaming Russia for an approaching Dark Age winter of economic turmoil with a pub- and peasant-filled caboose. The authorities fear a surge in crime and civil unrest driven by the cost-of-living crisis, and an uprising among the plebes will be televised. Gazprom has wasted no time in trolling the West with a video showing Europe freezing over this winter.
A majority of European politicos have ignored the desperate pleas from bankrupt businesses and the populace on rampant energy-driven inflation, and instead squawking about the “end of an era of abundance” and “stick with Ukraine’s war as long as it takes” euphemisms to cower behind their feudal incompetence.
German Foreign Minister Says Support For Ukraine Will Continue… “Despite soaring energy prices that threaten the stability of the country, Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said she would continue to support Ukraine ‘no matter what German voters think… If I give the promise to people in Ukraine – we stand with you, as long as you need us – then I want to deliver. No matter what my German voters think, but I want to deliver to the people of Ukraine,’ she said. The German official said that such an approach would not change even if large numbers of people were out in the streets protesting against crippling energy bills.” – Summit News, Sep. 1
Reminiscent of the WW2 era, experts in the U.K. warn of rationing to conserve energy for homes, hospitals, schools, councils, businesses, and 60% of British factories at risk of closing. Success will supposedly be achieved via no cooking or use of appliances until after 8pm, closing pubs and cafes at 9pm, turning off lights and burn candles in Italy when the wind doesn’t blow through wind turbines or else people will suffer the consequences of rolling blackouts and the lack of heat to keep warm this winter.
West wants to defeat Russia on battlefield? ‘Let them try’: Putin… “The Russian leader said that Russia had barely gotten started in terms of its war in Ukraine and dared the West to try to defeat it in warfare, while also insisting that Moscow was still open to the idea of peace talks… In a hawkish speech, Putin said prospects for any negotiation grows dimmer the longer the conflict dragged on. ‘Today we hear that they want to defeat us on the battlefield. What can you say? Let them try,’ Putin said.” – Aljazeera, July 2022
Logistic Peril for NATO Weapons to Ukraine… “Beginning the diplomatic resolution would be distasteful, perhaps seen as defeatist, but as there is little chance of climbing out of the current morass, it may be better to negotiate now than later… The military often talks about the ability to see things clearly and comprehensively… Zelensky and NATO must face up to tough decisions before those decisions are forced on them.” – U.S. Army Brigadier General Mark T. Kimmitt (Ret.) via WSJ Opinion, Sep. 1
Italy’s Salvini says West should rethink sanctions for Russia… “Western sanctions against Russia are not working and actually harm Italy, according to Matteo Salvini, the leader of Italy’s far-right League party, suggesting allied countries should reconsider their approach… ‘Do we have to defend Ukraine? Yes,’ Salvini said. ‘But I would not want the sanctions to harm those who impose them more than those who are hit by them’… Salvini said the League has supported measures to help Ukraine at both the national and EU levels and he would not break with Western allies if they continue to impose sanctions, but he also called on other leaders to rethink their tactics.” – Politico, Sep. 4
I noted in “A Dark Age Winter of Discontent in Europe” Part 1 (Twitter thread):
“Europe’s failed renewable energy policies, the shuttering of nuclear power plants, sanctions against Russia and its energy exports via Gazprom’s network of natural gas pipelines, and worsening inflation due to higher energy prices has created a situation so dire that some Europeans are being advised to burn wood, prioritize coal, and petroleum derivatives to stay warm this winter and not freeze to death… The confluence of crises guarantees hardship across Europe this winter no matter what governments do. Resorting to the money printing press will only worsen the situation… Soaring prices for fuels create higher levels of inflation, undermines currency, and disrupts manufacturing. As Europe trends into recession this fall and winter and politicos fail to mitigate the energy crisis, it heightens the threat of social unrest and political upheaval as blackouts arrive, folks freeze in their homes, and families are unable to afford basic necessities amid food insecurity with regional famines around the world.” – TraderStef, Aug. 31
“Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake.”
Unfortunately, the newly-elected Prime Minister of Britain and existing E.U. leadership are resorting to debt-based money-printing solutions for a crisis that’s solvable in short order by swallowing some pride, negotiating a face-saving halt to NATO’s proxy war in Ukraine instead of phony diplomacy that provoked a bear for two decades, and bringing relief to the global economy and its people who are burdened with unnecessary misery and skyrocketing inflation fueled by a sanctions regime and additional debt that’s impossible to repay. We’re entering “This Is Global 1848,” as the 1840s were known as “the hungry 40s” and we’ll soon enter the hungry 2020s.
Czech Republic the first to fail over war and rising inflation – TFIglobal, Sep. 5
Tens of thousands protest in Prague against Czech government, EU and NATO… “The far right and far left joined forces to rally against the country’s pro-Western Czech government… Police estimated 70,000 in Wenceslas Square… Protesters demand resignation of the government led by Prime Minister Petr Fiala… They condemn the government for its support of the sanctions against Russia over its war in Ukraine, for not tackling soaring energy prices, and criticized NATO and the EU bloc’s plan to reach climate neutrality… Fiala said everyone has a right to demonstrate, but those protests are expressing pro-Russia views ‘that are not in the interest of the Czech Republic.’” – AP, Sep. 3
Sweden, Finland step in to avert Lehman-like situation for power companies… “Finland and Sweden announced plans to offer billions of dollars in liquidity guarantees to power companies after Russia’s Gazprom shut the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline, deepening Europe’s energy crisis… ‘The government’s programme is a last-resort financing option for companies threatened with insolvency,’ Finland’s Prime Minister Sanna Marin told a news conference… The rapid rise in electricity prices has resulted in paper losses on electricity futures contracts of power companies, forcing them to find funds to post additional collateral with financial exchanges.” – Reuters, Sep. 4
UK weighs huge support package as Europe battles energy crisis… “Liz Truss, who took over from Boris Johnson on Tuesday, is planning to freeze household energy bills at the current level for this winter and next, paid for by government-backed loans to suppliers… UK is also working on help for businesses, but this is likely to be more complex and would be reviewed more frequently. European governments are pushing through multibillion-euro packages to prevent utilities from collapsing and protect households amid soaring energy costs triggered mainly by the fallout from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.” – Reuters, Sep. 6
Russia only leveraged stupidity by the collective West’s leadership that brought natural gas pipeline flows to zero over several months and indefinitely this past weekend. Moscow has never threatened to turn off the gas tap as a quid pro quo due to implementation of any sanction. Reactive commentary by Western leaders and media presstitutes over the U.S. Labor Day weekend spun the final shutdown as their moment to claim that Moscow always planned to “weaponize” its abundant energy reserves and exports.
“Russia weaponizing gas is ‘part of its hybrid war strategy to try to persuade Western countries to reduce their support for Ukraine,’ one expert said… ‘Russia is blackmailing us. Russia is using energy as a weapon,’ European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said.” – NBC News, Jul. 21
Russia switches off Europe’s main gas pipeline until sanctions are lifted… “Dmitry Peskov, president Putin’s spokesman, blamed EU, UK and Canadian sanctions for Russia’s failure to deliver gas through the key pipeline to Germany from St Petersburg via the Baltic Sea… ‘The problems pumping gas came about because of sanctions western countries introduced against our country and companies. There are no other reasons that could have caused this pumping problem’… Peskov said the sanctions made it impossible to service the turbines or receive guarantees they would be repaired. ‘It was these sanctions, that western governments introduced, which brought the situation to what we see now… Obviously life is getting worse for people, businessmen, and companies in Europe. Of course, ordinary people in these countries will have more and more questions for their leaders.’” – Financial Times, Sep. 5
What is likely to be the worst possible action the West could embark upon is to try to force a global price cap on Russian crude oil purchases, which is impossible to implement and very counterproductive. The conspiracy was first floated by Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi and taken up by U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen earlier this year. One glaring impediment besides convincing half the world and OPEC, which won’t play ball anyway, is that Russian oil already sells at a steep discount to alternatives. Also, do you actually think that Russia will accept such folly and not retaliate? The whole idea might look good on paper to the political architects that haven’t built back better anything, but it’s not feasible in practice.
Why The Russian Oil Price Cap Won’t Work… “The chances of a G7 price cap on Russian oil being remotely effective are best summed up by a Bloomberg energy and commodities columnist: ‘My friends and I have agreed to impose a price cap on our local pub’s beer. Mind we actually do not plan to drink any beer there. The pub’s owner says he won’t sell beer to anyone observing the cap, so other patrons, who drink a lot there, say they aren’t joining the cap. Success.’” – OilPrice.com, Sep. 5
There will be additions to this Dark Age series in the near future, so stay tuned for more insanity from the lords as fall and winter reveal reality.
Going for Broke – TheDuran, Sep. 6
G-7 Price Cap on Russian Oil, Russia Won’t Sell It To Them – Emil Cosman, Sep. 3
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