Earlier this week, American President Joe Biden caused quite a stir when he called Russian President Vladimir Putin a "killer."
Listen, I am going to go out on a ledge and defend Putin because Americans are bad at history.
Back during the second world war, all American kids learned about how "the Greatest Generation" saved us from the purest form of evil to ever walk the Earth, Adolf Hitler and the Nazis.
What is often glossed over is that there was a very real possibility that we wouldn't have defeated the Nazis without the help of Stalin and the Soviet Union.
It is a fact that Hitler had over 6 million Jews killed. Also a fact:
"Hitler was responsible for between 11 million and 12 million noncombatant deaths, while Stalin was responsible for at least 6 million, and as many as 9 million if “foreseeable” deaths caused by deportation, starvation, and incarceration in concentration camps are included." - China File
Stalin purged his own countrymen almost at the same rate as the Nazis purged theirs. I want you to look at the picture above. Again. America and Russia were allies despite Stalin's atrocities. Did FDR know about Stalin's dark side? He had an inkling.....
What does World War II have to do with today? Putin is not purging his own people. He simply isn't. You bring up Alexander Litvinenko? That is more than a fair accusation.
Let's just say, for argument sake, that Putin ordered the hit on Litvinenko. You, the reader, do know there's a lot easier ways to kill people than by Polonium poisoning right? If Putin ordered the murder, he was clearly using Polonium as a message to his enemies that if you cross him, you will die a horrible death as your life slowly and painfully drains from you.
"Wow Fred Hunt, how is that defending Putin?"
According to the USA Today, Putin has had 120 of his enemies assassinated. So Putin has been in charge 17 years, that's about 7 people per year. Historically, if the 120 number is accurate, that's, uh, well, that's not Ten Million.
A closer analogy to today is that Vladimir Putin is Jeff Bezos. How do I figure? Oh, you'd be surprised.
Depending on who you ask, Vladimir Putin could be worth as much as $200 Billion. Jeff Bezos' net worth? $180 Billion. You argue that Jeff Bezos never killed anyone? Between 2013 and 2018 alone, according to Newsweek, 189 Amazon employees tried to kill themselves, WHILE AT WORK.
Seriously, where you work, right now, has anyone ever tried to kill themselves during their shift?
People killing themselves at work is oligarchical level shit.
Putin exploited the mechanisms of government to become a billionaire in Russia like Bezos exploited labor law to become a billionaire in America. It's really that simply. Basically Putin's riches came at the expense of common Russians, just like Jeff Bezos gets ahead at the expense of common Americans.
Jeff Bezos didn't invent shipping and logistics, he didn't invent shopping, and he didn't invent the internet. Jeff Bezos perfected online shipping and mastered the art of getting you your crap as fast as possible. You're arguing Putin didn't invent anything? Listen, after the Soviet Union crumbled, it was Putin who stabilized the country and returned it to the world stage. I would argue that Putin did more for Russia than Bezos did for the United States.
The World Cup and the Olympics were crowning achievements for Russia Inc., the company run by cutthroat CEO Vladimir Putin. Not a fair comparison you say because Putin controls the media. You do know that Jeff Bezos owns the 6th largest paper in America, and the largest newspaper in the Nation's Capital, right? The Washington Post was founded over 140 years ago and has found controversy in repeatedly comparing nemesis Donald Trump to Hitler. The last time that happened? Just a few months ago:
No matter how much you or I didn't like Trump, TRUMP WASN'T HITLER.
Technically Trump killed 13 people and gloated about it: Trump Leaves Office with the Most Executions in the past 100 years. If it was up to Trump, I think that he would have executed 100 Federal Prisoners if it was politically advantageous. If your angle is that Putin has more people in prisons, that's not true either. During the Trump Administration, .7% of Americans were in prison or local jails, about the same percentage as the Obama/Biden Administration. About .4% of Russians were incarcerated during the same time period.
When it comes to free speech you argue that Bezos is clearly better than Putin? Not so fast.
Write bad stuff about Putin? Go to jail.
Try to organize a union under Bezos? Fired.
Both are restrictions of free speech.
"Employees shall have the right to self-organization, to form, join, or assist labor organizations, to bargain collectively through representatives of their own choosing, and to engage in other concerted activities for the purpose of collective bargaining or other mutual aid or protection..." - NLRA 1935
You don't want to talk about labor unions? You don't want to talk about Putin or Bezos, you want to talk about the real criminal of the new millennium, Donald Trump, and how he killed a half a million Americans with Covid? Okay, let's talk about that. There's a narrative out there that a different president would have stopped Covid (i.e. Hillary Clinton).
Beacon of Speech is very clear on their historical perspective. Donald Trump could have done a better job at stopping the virus, but even countries like Italy that did everything "right" couldn't stop the pandemic. Donald Trump will be remembered in the same light as Woodrow Wilson in relation to Covid 19. How do I figure? States like California and Florida took 2 totally different approaches in regards to the virus, and ended up with nearly identical infection rates.
Donald Trump used the coronavirus like a political prop. Jeff Bezos and Vladimir Putin used the coronavirus to get richer. But of the 3, Trump was initially more worried about impeachment, Bezos was slow to get safety measures into his warehouses, and Putin rushed the Sputnik Vaccine into production.
Don't forget, it wasn't the Pfizer Vaccine that was first on the public stage, but the Sputnik Vaccine. Not only was it first, but the BBC now reports that it has a 92% success rate.
"The development of the Sputnik V vaccine has been criticized for unseemly haste, corner cutting, and an absence of transparency. But the outcome reported here is clear and the scientific principle of vaccination is demonstrated, which means another vaccine can now join the fight to reduce the incidence of Covid-19. - BBC News
The leader of Russia outhustled the leader of America and the richest man in America? Remember, Jeff Bezos only instituted social distancing measures when he was shamed into instituting social distancing measure.
Answer this for yourself, would YOU consider working for Amazon? If you asked me if I would rather keep my job and transfer to Russia or stay in America and work for Amazon? Ugh.
"доброе утро товарищ"
Would I consider moving to China? Oh, hell no. And here's the crux of the story, China has
1,000,000 citizens in Concentration Camps. Not 75 years ago. Not 50 years ago. TODAY. No other country in the world has over a million of their own citizens in concentration camps.
Right now, there's a Documentary on Netflix called Cannibal Island. Cannibal Island is the story of when Joseph Stalin (in 1933) took 5,000 prisoners and dropped them off with no supplies on a Siberian Island. Guess what happened? (See Title.) Nobody is doing any of that mass execution stuff anymore in 2021......
Except for Xi Jinping.
Trump isn't Jinping. Bezos isn't Jinping. Putin isn't Jinping. Jinping is a ruthless dictator in the mold of the worst of the 20th Century dictators.
Putin's greatest crime for CNN and the American Left? Putin isn't woke.
Again, both Bezos and Putin achieved their monetary goals through exploiting the workers and tilting the systems of the economy in their favor.
You argue that their private lives aren't even close to the same?
Vladimir Putin married Lyudmila Putina in 1983. The Putin's settled down, had children, and raised a family until the couple divorced in 2014. Since then, Putin has become an alleged Playboy (with rumors of a secret family.)
Jeff Bezos married MacKenzie Scott in 1993. The Bezos' settled down, had children, and raised a family until the couple divorced in 2019. Since then, Bezos has become an alleged Playboy.
Let's circle back around to BIden's "killer" comment to cement our point.
When Putin heard about the comment, he wished Joe Biden "good health."
But Putin isn't really going to pull a Polonium Surprise on Joe Biden, that would risk damaging his revenue streams.
But what if Joe Biden instituted a "Billionaire tax" at 90% for the richest men in America? Would Jeff Bezos just say, "Okay, " and silently take a multi-billion dollar hit to his pocketbook.
Or would Bezos lawyer up and wish Biden "good health?"