Your right, it has. Probably even further. And not just for Russians, but proportionately for any foreigner working in Russia whose income is in rubles, such as myself. As a U.S. citizen living abroad, I declare my income to the IRS every year as required by law and in fact just filed my 1040 form for 2016 today. Up to and including 2014 when the ruble crashed in December, my annual income had been inching towards 6 figures (in dollars). Now it’s only about half that, despite the fact that I’m earning the same amount, if not more, in rubles. This makes it much more expensive to go to the U.S. to visit my family. I even sarcastically joked at the time that the world had just doubled in size and America was twice as far away. In any case, it is twice as expensive to travel abroad. To say that this is a difficult and frustrating situation for a lot of people in Russia is to say nothing.
But you are really misguided in placing the blame on just how and why this happened. At the time sanctions were being place against Russia, I wrote the following article for The Moscow Times. I quoted President Obama in his State of the Union address when he was openly taking credit for ‘isolating Russia and leaving it’s economy in tatters’ through sanctions. The real hit to the ruble rate was a combination of dropping oil prices with sanctions and experts disagree on just how much each factor affected the economy.
Many foreigners visiting Moscow for the first time notice how gray and colorless it can be. However, a lot has changed…themoscowtimes.com
If what Obama said isn’t trying to ‘undermine’ Russia’s economy, than what is? You posted in your follow up to Svetlana that:
The west hasn’t tried to “undermine” Russia’s economy. It was Putin’s choice to take Ukraine, and he knew full well that it would lead to sanctions.
I guess Putin could have chosen to not do anything when a neighboring government was violently overthrown by a U.S. backed coup, but he didn’t. He acted by doing what most Russians consider the right thing: take Crimea back. Many Ukrainians in Donetsk and Luhansk wish he had done more. Why do so many Americans so easily overlook the fact that the U.S. started this chain of events by continuing its destructive rampage of regime change in other countries? If the U.S. hadn’t done what they did in Ukraine, Russia would not have felt the need to take action. And U.S. meddling in Ukraine has led to predictable results, similar to Libya and Iraq and other countries before that, where we end up backing radical forces beyond our control and then leaving a power vacuum. That the Russian people have chosen to back Putin’s actions despite the hit to their economy speaks to their closer understanding of the situation. Have you talked to anyone from Crimea? If so, I’d be interested to hear what they think. Since the U.S. elections, it’s been fashionable for lots of Americans who really don’t know much about Russia at all to speak out, unfortunately in most cases just regurgitating the news they’ve been fed without doing any critical thinking.
Take a look at some of the other things I’ve written elsewhere about Russia, and if you’re open to have an honest discussion about what’s going on, I’m ready. Don’t be so quick to dismiss other people’s views and experience as propoganda. Some of the holes in your ‘arguments’ with Svetlana are so big they’re embarrassing.
On the U.S. elections:
(This is an unpublished piece I wrote last fall after the final presidential debate but before the election. I have added two brief notes…medium.com
On arming Ukraine:
Sometimes it can be difficult to keep up with all the requirements that come with being a foreigner living in Russia. In…themoscowtimes.com
On racial diversity in Russia and media bias: