Fact Check

Vladimir Putin Didn't Call Obama an Idiot for Socialist Policies

A years-old fake quote from Vladimir Putin started recirculating on the internet for some reason in February 2016.

Published Feb. 17, 2016

Vladimir Putin called President Obama an idiot for touting socialist policies.

On 15 February 2016, the Facebook page "The Original Wake Up People" posted a years-old meme featuring a quote ostensibly uttered by Vladimir Putin:

putin obama idiot

This is not a real quote from the Russian president. The above-displayed quote has been circulating since 2009 in one form or another (usually in the form of a meme such as the above image) when it was originally published on the satirical web site Scooter's Report:

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has warned the Obama administration against adopting further socialism, saying Russian history clearly proves it is a recipe for failure.

"Any fourth grade history student knows socialism has failed in every country, at every time in history," said Putin. "President Obama and his fellow Democrats are either idiots or deliberately trying to destroy their own economy."

Scooter's Report, which frequently featured anti-Obama rhetoric, has a disclaimer on the web site that states, "Like I have to tell you: This is fictitious satire and any resemblance to persons, places, or events is coincidental."

Putin has, however, addressed the responsibilities of businesses to the community in the past:

We need business to understand its social responsibility, that the main task and objective for a business is not to generate extra income and to become rich and transfer the money abroad, but to look and evaluate what a businessman has done for the country, for the people, on whose account he or she has become so rich.

Dan Evon is a former writer for Snopes.

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