Russia in 2022
Don’t want to go too much into Orwell’s ‘1984’ but Russia is going very fast to get onto the pages of the book written by a prophet back in 1948.
Every flower of the real opposition is rooted out. Now Putin has come to pin-point, not mass, repressions: to pick dozens and to frighten millions. This is, so far, not Stalin’s way yet, but it works like this pretty well in our so-called ‘vegetarian times’.
Lots of people are declared ‘foreign agents’ or ‘extremists’. Some have left the country. Some are in jail like Navalny, an absolutely honest and brave man. The absolute majority of those who oppose the president and the government, not the country, are frightened now.
Like me. This is Putin’s precise goal.
I’ve myself had a nice talk with an FSB guy in 2020 regarding my ties with the United States and my online projects. That time they couldn’t indict me anything even remotely correlated with ‘extremist’ activity or ‘treason’ – just because there was and is nothing behind it. But I felt the stinking breath of a monster.
There is a proverb in Russia related to the KGB/FSB thinking: ‘The fact is that you’re free is not your merit, it is our problem’.
I see so many cases of why Russia is fast coming back to the time of mass repressions with lots of media or citizens declared so-called ‘foreign agents’ or ‘extremists’. Really, we don’t learn from our own history. Sad.
Really, I don’t feel safe now. I’m ashamed of my fear, too: we’re coming back to Russia’s darkest periods of time.
Putin is preparing for his 2024 moment: either to stay in power for indefinite period of time or to hand it to somebody else 200 per cent reliable to him. This is why we’re experiencing all these civic oppressions now. Everything must be rooted out. Be calm. There should be absolute still. No voices of disagreement or you’ll be punished.
The Putin’s state is everything. Citizens or civil society are nothing. We’re population now, we’re herd. Just like the ‘Animal Farm’: welcome back to the USSR.
This is why I’m pretty pessimistic on the 2022 outlook. The fundamental shifts are going to happen here. The minority is frightened. The majority is the ‘Farm’.
2022 – what’s the point?
Exactly a year ago, I wrote, in this very blog: “The pandemic was always going to happen at some time for all sorts of human-activity reasons. And, unless we change, it will happen again, and again, and again. Will we change? You know what, the world seems so divided right now, more than I can remember in my 68 years, that I have to say, I haven’t got the slightest bit of confidence that enough of us will learn anything beneficial from the past 12 months.”
I will change a bit of that script, if I may. I will change “68 years” for “69 years” and nothing else.
Despite 2021 being the most disappointing and destructive 365 days in memory, I feel nothing has changed. We seemed to have learned sod all. We continue to let global warming have its way, despite all our promises, and as for the pandemic, no country has a clue how to control the way it is decimating our health services. Certainly not in England. Our beloved NHS is a shadow of its former self, and now is not fit for purpose. I have close family who are simply not getting the treatment they have paid for and deserve. 2022 will see more efforts to privatise the NHS, and it won’t be too long before we have the disastrous American model where half a million Brits will go bankrupt because of their medical bills.
Politically, Britain enters 2022 still split over Brexit, and despite the most obvious reasons for ruing the decision to leave the EU, supporters unbelievably still think it was ok, despite UK insolvencies expected to rise in 2022. The UK government continues with its corrupt and selfish ways, with no decent opposition parties to hold them to account.
There is so little to which we can look forward. My American and Russian co-writers, I am sure, will paint a similar picture. It’s quite dreadful. We can’t deal with the pandemic, we can’t look after our planet, and the only thing we can guarantee is global conflict on an epic scale. So what’s the point of 2022??
2022 – what’s the point?
2022 is going to be a huge year for the US. This is the year that will set the stage for America’s future. Notice I said “set the stage” not determine. The Congress will almost certainly return to Republican control and any doubt about the Party of Lincoln now being the Party of Trump will be removed.
Nothing is set in stone:
- Trump’s hold on the Party seems to be loosing somewhat
- Hundreds of millions of dollars in loans to Trump mature
- Trump may be in serious legal trouble:
- Attempts to overturn the election in Georgia
- Attempted coup on January sixth
- Tax evasion in New York
As you know, there’s more but these are the biggies
- There is an element within the Party, led by Mitch, which may rebel
- Trump may have created a MAGA monster that he can no longer control
The mechanics are complex and there are many countervailing currents:
- Kevin McCarthy truly doesn’t give a damn about America and only lusts for power
- Trump still controls the discourse at Fox News
- Trump’s base is donating millions – maybe allowing him to pay his bills
- The court system is, somewhat, rigged & will drag out cases to help Trump
- His lieutenants remain loyal
- The US House Republicans will kill the Jan. 6th Committee after the Mid-Terms
- The Department of Justice seems timid
- Many will not be able to vote in the next election
- Some who can vote may have their ballots thrown out
Everything is in flux and nothing is decided. Personally, I don’t think 2022 will bring an end to the game show that is The United States. This is a victory for The Donald. By keeping democracy in chaos, there is still room for his triumph. Nothing is set, and the rule of law remains fluid.
2023 could be a big year. If any of the felonies dogging Trump are allowed to go to trial he could face conviction. If New York State finds him guilty, I understand he may actually go to jail. Apparently, calling a State Prosecutor names is a bad idea. Who would have guessed?
As an aside, there is nothing in the Constitution preventing a President from holding office from inside a cell. I suppose that’s something the Founding Fathers never contemplated. The big show will be 2024 – the next opportunity for a coup but that’s another Blog.