Monday, January 19, 2009

Putin Can Teach West A Thing Or Two About Capitalism

CEO of Russia in Perpetuity, Vladimir Putin, was faced Monday with the tough truth of plummeting oil prices. Oil, of course, has been the lifeblood of Russia's renaissance in recent years. Instead of running to congress, or in his case the Duma, and begging for zillions of rubles in bailout funding without acknowledging the deplorable state of affairs, the Judo black belt ordered his finance minister to rebase Russia's new budget on a price of $41/barrel, or less than half the $95/barrel that was factored in the existing budget. While this will probably have a dramatic adverse impact on both Russia's GDP and its existing Reserve Fund surplus of $137 billion, Yelena Lebedinskaya, a budget analyst, said "there will be borrowings, but they won't be large." What, there is a way out of a crisis that does not involve printing $5 trillion in new money?

Well, if all else fails, Russia can always default like in 1997. But at least Karl Marx is happy... with what is going on in D.C. and London.
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