Russia, Germany and Mutually Assured Stupidity

Posted: April 4, 2022 by datechguy in war
Tags: , , ,

Which of you wishing to construct a tower does not first sit down and calculate the cost to see if there is enough for its completion? Otherwise, after laying the foundation and finding himself unable to finish the work the onlookers should laugh at him and say, ‘This one began to build but did not have the resources to finish.’

Or what king marching into battle would not first sit down and decide whether with ten thousand troops he can successfully oppose another king advancing upon him with twenty thousand troops? But if not, while he is still far away, he will send a delegation to ask for peace terms.

Luke 14:28-32

Saturday we talked about how stupid is was for Russia to complain about Ukraine hitting fuel dumps in Russia under the argument that it hurts potential peace talks on the grounds that if you decide to go to war with someone they retain the right to fight back.

Now it’s Europe’s turn to be stupid. Don Surber pointed out that virtue signaling by the Chemical Giant BASF (whose name I remember from the old blank VHS tapes I used to by in the 80’s) might just prove costly.

But in the meantime, Brudermuller described that “It’s not enough that we all turn down the heating by 2 degrees now” given that “Russia covers 55 percent of German natural gas consumption.” He emphasized that if Russian gas disappeared overnight, “many things would collapse here” – given that we would have high levels of unemployment, and many companies would go bankrupt. This would lead to irreversible damage.” He continued:

But in the meantime, Brudermuller described that “It’s not enough that we all turn down the heating by 2 degrees now” given that “Russia covers 55 percent of German natural gas consumption.” He emphasized that if Russian gas disappeared overnight, “many things would collapse here” – given that we would have high levels of unemployment, and many companies would go bankrupt. This would lead to irreversible damage.” He continued:

“To put it bluntly: This could bring the German economy into its worst crisis since the end of the Second World War and destroy our prosperity. For many small and medium-sized companies in particular, it could mean the end. We can’t risk that!”

The dire warning of coming disaster in the event Russian gas is shut off came in response being questioned over whether it’s at all possible to abandon Russian energy. 

Now remember what got them to this point, Germany joined others in going after Russia’s financial industry to punish them for their moves in Ukraine and of course like Russia’s shock and surprise that Ukraine would dare to hit back Europe in general and Germany in particular are shocked and surprised that Russia didn’t take this lying down.

After European nations imported the most gas from Russian sources yesterday in months, scrambling to stock up on supplies as Russian President Vladimir Putin’s deadline to either pay for gas in rubles (or be cut off) came and wentRussian gas giant Gazprom has officially halted all deliveries to Europe via the Yamal-Europe pipeline, a critical artery for European energy supplies.

Instead of flowing toward Germany and the EU, gas supplies on Friday and Saturday started flowing in the opposite direction, according to Gascade, the network operator.

Well there is US LNG but they’re already at full import capacity there, well what about Nuclear Power, oh wait:

Germany on Friday is shutting down half of the six nuclear plants it still has in operation, a year before the country draws the final curtain on its decades-long use of atomic power.

The decision to phase out nuclear power and shift from fossil fuels to renewable energy was first taken by the center-left government of Gerhard Schroeder in 2002.

His successor, Angela Merkel, reversed her decision to extend the lifetime of Germany’s nuclear plants in the wake of the 2011 Fukushima disaster in Japan and set 2022 as the final deadline for shutting them down.

The three reactors now being shuttered were first powered up in the mid-1980s. Together they provided electricity to millions of German households for almost four decades.

Alas for Germany Russia and before them the Old Soviet Unions investment in the Greens and anti-nuke activists have paid off handsomely.

One might argue that this will not stop Russia’s economic woes and possible short term collapse and you might be right but it must be remembered a people with a history of destroying their own cities and crops to harm an enemy are likely not going to flinch at a hardship if they can get revenge on those they consider its source.

It’s very possible that the war in Ukraine will cause long term damage to Russia’s economy but it’s also very likely that they will be very happy to take as many of those who decided to take them down with them.

Comments
  1. bob sykes says:

    Russia’s economic woes are greatly overstated. They are as close to an economic autarky as you can get, the benefit of numerous previous sanctions. Sanctions generally create the opportunity for a protected monopoly, and Russian companies have benefited by being able to enter markets once served by importers without competition.

    The current oil and gas sanctions are a windfall for Russia and OPEC and an economic disaster for the rest of the world. The collapse of wheat exports from Russia and Ukraine are a disaster for the whole world.

    The dollar will not survive as the world’s reserve currency if the sanctions persist for long.

    By the way, there is not a single country in Latin America that supports the US sanctions, except the French colony Guiana. Mexico doesn’t. There is not a single country in Africa or the Middle East that does, not even our ally Turkey. India, China, Pakistan… no country in Asia supports the sanctions except for the few that are our allies.

    One should bear in mind that the Russian economy is actually much more diversified than the American economy (largely de-industrialized), and that they make a range of things we no longer make.

    The Mackinder nightmare of a united Eurasia is coming into reality before our eyes.