_73638255_73638254For several weeks now the anti-Russian stance in the US press has quieted down. Presumably because the political leadership has moved its attention on to other things, and the media flock has followed suit. Have you read much about Ukraine and Russia recently? I thought not, despite the fact that there’s plenty of serious action — both there as well as related activity in the US — going on that deserves our careful attention. As I recently wrote, the plunging oil price is a potential catalyst for stock market turmoil and sovereign instability. Venezuela is already circling the drain, and numerous other oil exporters are in deep trouble as they foolishly expanded their national budgets and social programs to match the price of oil; something that is easy to do on the way up and devilishly tricky on the way down. But consider the impact on Russia. From the Russian point of view, everything from their plunging ruble to bitter sanctions to the falling price of oil are the fault of the US, either directly or indirectly. Whether that is fair or not is irrelevant; that’s the view of the Russians right now. So no surprise, it doesn’t dispose them towards much in the way of good-will towards the West generally, and the US specifically. More