DISINFORMATION: Romanians will regain the country's wealth if they isolate themselves from the West, like Japan did

Three young Romanian nationalists men wear national flags labeled with black wolves on their shoulders, during a protest against a new mandatory vaccination law project and against new measures ordered by the Romanian government during the third wave of the Covid-19 Coronavirus pandemic, at University Plaza in Bucharest, Romania, 20 March 2021.
© EPA-EFE/ROBERT GHEMENT   |   Three young Romanian nationalists men wear national flags labeled with black wolves on their shoulders, during a protest against a new mandatory vaccination law project and against new measures ordered by the Romanian government during the third wave of the Covid-19 Coronavirus pandemic, at University Plaza in Bucharest, Romania, 20 March 2021.

Sovereignist proposals: Romanians must boycott Western products, resign from corporations and abandon democracy

Romania's assets have been confiscated by foreigners, and Romanians can only get them back if they isolate themselves from the West, according to a false narrative typical of the sovereignist trend. Romanians are urged to stop buying Western products, to stop working in corporations and to stop participating in the democratic process, as Japan did in order to become an economic power after World War II. But the Japan example is simply bogus. The catastrophic results of sovereignty and isolationism are evident if we look how the states that have chosen this path have failed.

NEWS: “It is impossible to be Romanian and not notice that your country is slowly sinking. No matter how stupid and brainwashed you may be, it’s impossible not to see that the big foreign corporations hold the economic monopoly and that politicians are obviously protecting their financial interests. And now, because the industry and the natural and mineral resources have already been taken from us, they’ve moved on to the second phase: the purchase of agricultural land. During the Turkish, Hungarian, Austrian or Russian rule you were only a serf; you had a patch of land, and the landlord would take tribute from you. Now you are going to be a slave; you will have nothing, and the masters will do what they want with you! It's as if we lost a war and now the invaders are methodically annihilating us.


- Focus on the market of agricultural goods produced by the Romanian peasants. For now, they too are using chemical fertilizers...but not as bad as the poison that the big foreign corporations are using. Ask them to sell you clean products. You have no idea what a sincere plea can do.


- Stop using foreign services. Withdraw your accounts from their banks, or move them to Romanian banks. For maintenance utilities, build your local facilities: solar panels, thermal plants, water wells with pumps, etc. Stop letting strangers take your money for nothing.


- Try not to get hired by foreign companies. At first it won't be possible, because there aren't many Romanian companies left. But as we recover economically, move to domestic companies.


- Stop participating in their corrupt game of “democracy”. It's a hoax and a strategy to legitimize foreign domination! They will laugh in your face and say: “You voted your representatives, now listen to them!”. But they have already been corrupted by your conquerors! They do not represent your interests, but those of foreigners. You can't expect anything good from them”.

Isolationism leads to economic collapse. The so-called post-war Japanese isolationism, a big lie

NARRATIVES: 1. Romania became the property of foreign corporations. 2. The Japanese economic miracle is repeatable by refusing to purchase imported products. 3. The only solution for freeing the country from occupation is a closed economy, where interactions with foreign capital and products are lacking completely. Politically, liberation can only be achieved by abandoning the democratic process. 4. In Romania, democracy hasn’t worked, it has only translated into the country getting occupied by foreigners and losing its independence.

CONTEXT: Sovereignist, anti-Western ideas are a reality of political life in most liberal democracies, where they have been assimilated by various groups (populists, right-wing and left-wing extremists to a certain extent and by parties that are not at the extremes of the political spectrum), so-called opinion leaders or influencers, a certain type of media (especially online), etc. The actual popularity and influence they have may vary from case to case.

Such ideas are also promoted by the Russian Federation, on the one hand to present itself in antithesis with a West portrayed as decadent, immoral and rapacious (for its own image) and to undermine the Western values ​​- which represent the main threat to the Putin regime, obsessed with keeping such values ​​away from Russians – and democratic countries, which it sees as geopolitical adversaries. Moscow has been seeking to maintain direct relations with sovereignist circles in democratic states and, in parallel, through disinformation, fake news and propaganda campaigns has been promoting such themes and narratives for years. The online environment is extremely important for the propagation of sovereignist narratives and themes, especially because, by its very nature, it allows the origin of this disinformation and fake news to be covered, at least at the level of a superficial search.

With the invasion of Ukraine , Russia has increased its propagandistic interventions in countries that support the Ukrainian cause, with the clear aim of generating tensions among the European Union and the North Atlantic Alliance, in accordance with the principle “divide et impera”. In ex-communist countries, still captive to historical narratives of Stalinist origin, the Kremlin's propaganda camouflages its own manipulations with domestic themes, apparently of exclusively local interest. In Romania, generating an extremely toxic and primitive patriotism, Russia feeds the public space with false Eurosceptic and anti-NATO narratives, many of which have already been debunked by Veridica, such as the alleged  desire of Romanians to leave the EU and NATO  because the EU is planning to poison the population to assasinate the patriots and  push the country into the war .

PURPOSE: To undermine the population's trust in the EU and NATO, to promote the sovereignist discourse, as well as to trigger protest movements and civil disobedience that would lead to an economic crisis.

WHY THE NARRATIVES ARE FALSE: Romanian economy is not at all under the control of foreign capital, although indeed, in some sectors, it is predominant or even holds the monopoly.  An analysis of private companies, differentiated according to the criterion of the origin of the capital, shows that the share of companies with Romanian capital in the turnover is approximately equal to that of foreign companies. However, the problem of Romanian capital is quality and not quantity. With a number of employees working on domestic capital twice as many as those “enslaved” by foreign capital, the economic results are roughly equal. Add to these statistics the number of those who work “for the state” and thus the image of a people toiling for the well-being of non-indigenous becomes extremely unclear.

Retail trade, the economic sector that generates perhaps the biggest controversies related to product quality and prices, is more than 55% a Romanian business. In much higher percentages, so are transport, the food industry, construction, agriculture, the HoReCa industry or businesses in the healthcare sector. We should also say that, besides the oil and natural gas extractive sector, where the proportion of foreign capital exceeds 95%, in the rest of the extractive activities, Romanian companies have a share of 80%. Also, when it comes to an extremely hot topic of recent years, Romania's forests and wood, it is good to know that 93% of the companies whose activity is “Forestry and logging” are Romanian. And we are only talking about private companies, without taking into account the largest owner and operator of forests in the country, the state-owned company Romsilva.

Post-war Japan was practically a country in ruins, with a demoralized population. Its great cities had been turned into heaps of rubble and ashes. Years of American bombing had destroyed most of the country's industrial capacity. Astronomical hyperinflation had almost buried the national currency, and living conditions were awful, with the majority of the population not having access to the means to satisfy their most basic needs. Under these circumstances, it is absurd to think that anyone could afford the luxury of refusing certain products solely on the basis of their place of production. Furthermore, with industry at a standstill, it was virtually impossible for the production of domestic goods to meet the needs of Japan's entire population.

The absurdity of the story is also highlighted by the premise from which the entire narrative construction starts: “American companies had occupied all economic niches”.  If they were all occupied, how did the local entrepreneurs manifest themselves? In fact, the Japanese economic miracle   is due equally to the American policy (the Dodge Plan) and the enormous resilience of the Japanese people. Worried about the spread of communism in Asia, the Americans realized that a free and strong Japan could be a decisive factor in stopping this phenomenon.

Thus, the US actively encouraged the integration of the Japanese economy into world trade. Gradually, Japanese products penetrated other markets, which also stimulated an increase in imports. During the Korean War, 1950 – 1953, the Americans bought huge amounts of food and war materials from Japan. It was basically a sizeable transfer of wealth from American taxpayers to the Japanese economy, along with other aid pumped into the Japanese economy. Coupled with an extremely rigorous fiscal policy, but above all with an extraordinary educational policy, they eventually led to an economic revival so rapid that it was rightly considered a true miracle.

But no economic history lessons are needed to demonstrate that the feasibility of a hermetic economy, in which financial and human capital moves only in a restricted space, is nil. It is enough to take a look at the economies of states like North Korea, Iran or Cuba, isolated (voluntarily or not) from the global economy, to understand that such a model can only work in the very short term, and then more on a declarative rather than concrete level. But the most recent and eloquent example is, although there are voices claiming the contrary, the Russian economy. Subject to economic isolation and unprecedented international sanctions, it shows signs of severe regression , although the country has, in theory, huge resources in the most varied fields.

Urging people to consume only local products is oxymoronic from the start. The large store chains are already supplied with many Romanian products, which are more accessible from all points of view (financially, logistically, etc.) than imports. But in the absence of a steady supply chain, it is obvious that the differences between the demand and the supply capacity of the local market is covered by imports. In addition, there is an extremely wide range of products that can only be procured through imports, from food to electronic devices.

As a personal curiosity, we would like to know how the population would be warned about the danger generated by foreign capital only with the help of means of communication made in Romania. The idea that an agricultural producer would give up using poisonous substances  just because they are asked nicely, is, at best, a joke. So is the divestment of financial services provided by foreign corporations. The biggest financial scams in this country were authored by Romanian companies (Dacia Felix, Caritas, Bancorex, Astra Asigurări, Carpatica Asigurări, Banca Carpatica, FNI), and, when it was possible, Romanians' savings and investments were saved with the money from the guarantee funds established by foreigners. The rethinking of one’s career according to a patriotic model doesn’t have much ground either, given that, according to all statistics, average salaries in companies with foreign capital are double compared to those with Romanian capital.

But one thing is certain. Not only democracy in Romania works (it's true, failing many times and still far from the ideal standards), but the country is currently going through the best moments in its entire history. From individual liberties (including the right to freely express admiration for criminal dictators) to objective statistical data, everything shows that compared to the years when imports of goods accessible to the population were zero, Romania has made huge progress. The GDP is five times higher and the purchasing power of an average salary is more than double. Ultimately, the whole plea for getting freed from the foreign yoke is actually one for giving up democracy, as the end of the article under review clearly shows. And this, we hope, needs no further comment.

Tags: suveranism , Romania
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    Romanians will regain the country's wealth if they isolate themselves from the West, like Japan did
Cezar Manu

Cezar Manu

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