Russia bans U.S. food imports

Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev today announced that fruit, vegetables, meat, fish, milk and dairy imports from the United States, the European Union, Australia, Canada and Norway are all banned.

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  1. Australia, Canada and Norway

    Someone paid attention to us!

  2. I am not sure Russia is an environment where people say they hate putin over the phone to strangers. But at the very least, they do fear him. The russian people seem so brave in their internet video, yet so timid in politics.

  3. Interestingly enough, this Kremlin threat happened last year to the polling company that just published those high numbers. The Kremlin threat was reported multiple places. Here's a direct link to the poll site, and you'll see that Putin's popularity was steadily declining - right up until the Kremlin threatened to shut down the pollsters. It's been up, and stayed up, ever since.

  4. Russia joins the international community and imposes sanctions on itself, this time prohibiting other countries to trade food with Russia, further widening the already harsh trade embargoes in place. Good Job.

  5. Russia slapped itself. Not letting people sell you stuff means you pay more for said stuff. Yeah, it will make European farmers sad, but farmers are not exactly the lifeblood of Europe's economy. So, Russia did essentially no damage to Europe's economy and just increased the cost of living for all of their citizens. Brilliant.

    The simple European response to doing so something so incredibly stupid would be to ban Russian commercial air travel over its airspace. Guess who loses that game? Flying around Russia is annoying and imparts an extra cost on business travel for Europeans. Europe banning Russian flights cripples Russian's economy.

    Russia has nothing to threaten with other than it can beat up on its non-NATO neighbors militarily. The only real leverage Russia has beyond kicking the snot out of its defenseless neighbors is its gas supplies but again, it hurts them more than it hurts Europe. Cut off Europe from natural gas and the Americans and Canadians, the people sitting on the largest natural gas supplies in the world, will just let out three cheers.

    I want what you are smoking.

    There is no financial cost to the US; at all. The absolute worst thing Russia could do is cut off European gas supplies and make the Americans filthy rich. Americans can only economically win. They are laughing their way to the bank as Europe slowly shifts their natural gas consumption away from Russia. The only reason why the US does just go, "No world wide banking for you!" and economically decapitate Russia is because the US wants something to hold over Russia so that if they really go to town on one of their neighbors, the US still has rocks to throw over the wall.

    Russia has outmaneuvered itself. They have gotten some worthless land at the cost of economic sanctions. Maybe they can gobble up a little more (also worthless) Ukrainian land before this is all done. It is a raw deal for Ukraine, but it is worse for Russia. Russia has finally convinced Europe that it isn't a trustworthy trading partner. People were not exactly kicking down the doors to work with Russia to begin with, but after this, you would have to be a fool to enter into long term contracts with Russia. The chances of your business getting sunk by sanctions is simply too high. Russia is currently fucking its own economy. The only thing they are getting out of this is that it play well for the domestic crowds. The rest of the world is just slowly backing away.

    Russia isn't some new pole unless you happen to be one of the poor bastards that have to share a border with it. Russia is an economically worthless and their GDP is only propped up by resource extraction. They have a per capita GDP below Argentina and Poland and again, it is propped up by resource extraction. The unipolar world is certainly slowly fading, but Russia has nothing to do with it. The EU and China are the reason why American power is relatively declining in importance. If Brazil and India get their shit together, they will probably act as poles. Russia though? Russia is terrifying to its non-NATO neighbors and a nothing more than a nuisance everywhere else.

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