On Sanctions

“Sanctions” as deployed by the United States to supposedly punish the bad behavior of other nation states are problematic. First of all, “to sanction” used to mean to approve of or permit. Using the word as a dysphemism is disingenuous.

Secondly, restricting trade and exchange by private persons and corporations in order to penalize a strongman whose position is the result of an illegitimate claim to power strikes me as counter-productive. What if the Russian people perceive the U.S. government as punishing them on Putin’s behalf? Is the reality not that Putin’s claim to power is being sanctioned, in accord with the original meaning of the term?

If the Dude is confused, that is another matter.