Biden tries to climb down from Ukraine ledge, by David P. Goldman

Being on a ledge implies you can get off. Biden is more like up a creek without a paddle. From David P. Goldman at

Twin strategic and economic crises prompt search for a way out of Ukraine trap

Joe Biden faces stark and clear choices. Photo: Tasnim News

President Joe Biden’s administration faces a double disaster after its Ukraine miscalculation, namely a US recession and a second strategic humiliation in the space of a year.

The US economy is almost certainly in recession, while oil prices drive inflation that has cut workers’ real pay by about 6% year on year.

Washington’s earlier boasts of driving Russian President Vladimir Putin from power, destroying Russia’s capacity to make war and halving the size of the Russian economy look ridiculous in retrospect.

The world economy is reeling from supply shocks in energy and food provoked by Western sanctions on Russia. Monetary policy can reduce inflation only by forcing consumers to stop buying, which forces retailers to liquidate inventory at lower prices and crushes demand for raw materials – a cure that is worse than the disease.

Russia meanwhile earned a record €93 billion (US$97 billion) from energy exports during the first 100 days of the war, a Finnish study concluded. China and India, which refused to join Group of Seven sanctions against Russia, reportedly are buying oil at a discount of $30 to $40 per barrel, while American and European consumers are paying the full price.

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