To The Good People Of Russia

unhappy men sitting on bus stop during rain

Vlad The Mad Is Bad News For All Of Us

Vladimir Putin is possibly the richest man in the world, according to some people.

I say possibly because it is difficult to be sure. Putin hides his money in so many different accounts and assets. This is interesting in a couple of ways.

Firstly, why would anyone hide money if it had been earned honestly and legitimately? There can only be one reason: the money has not been earned legitimately.

Secondly, how did a man who earned just 131,900 USD in 2020 from his position as Russian president become so rich? The only way he could possibly have managed this is illegally, by stealing from his own country.

The estimates of his wealth range from 70 billion USD to 200 billion USD. Let’s assume the true number is somewhere in that range, say around 100 billion USD. There are just over 146 million people in Russia. If Putin did steal that money from the Russian state, that means he has effectively taken 684 dollars from every man, woman and child in his own country. That’s 57217 rubles at today’s exchange rate. Double that if the higher estimate is more accurate.

What is so sad about all of this is how much damage Putin is doing to the future of his own people. No country will want to engage with Russia while he is in charge, and the changes he has made to the Russian constitution mean that he will be around for years and years to come, no matter what his testosterone habit does to him. His increasingly erratic behaviour does not bode well for the future of Russia, or the world as a whole.

What is even more saddening is the loss to the wider world of the positive contribution his country might otherwise have made. There are good people in Russia, and they are intelligent and productive and hard working. Imagine what they could bring to the world if they had an honest leader. Imagine what they will think in future years when they find out the truth about what he has done to them, about the lies he has told them, about the riches he has stolen from them.

And now we have to watch as Russian sons and husbands spill their blood and lose their lives fighting a war that they do not believe in for a man who does not really care about them, who does not care about anything except his own greedy, selfish interests. Putin sits safely in one of his many palaces while Russians fight their Slavic cousins for no reason other than his megalomania.

The Russian people deserve better.

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