Dec 012020
 
 December 1, 2020  Posted by at 9:52 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , ,


Vincent van Gogh Women Picking Olives 1889

 

Vitamin D Insufficiency May Account for Almost 9 of 10 COVID19 Deaths (MDPI)
The Wuhan Files (CNN)
It Could Take 4 Years To Regain The 22 Million Jobs Lost During COVID19 (F.)
Black Friday Foot Traffic Down More Than 52% (RetailDive)
US Billionaires Have Gained $1 Trillion Since The Pandemic Started (ZH)
Trump’s Hill Allies Could Take One Last Shot To Overturn The Election (Pol.)
GA Govt Lawyers Defend Dominion ‘Trade Secrets’ To Stop Forensic Analysis (NP)
Neera Tanden: Unhinged, Venomous, Corrupt, Pathologically Dishonest (Greenwald)
Biden Picks Budget Director Who Pushed Social Security Cuts (DP)
The Case Against Sally Yates (Turley)
Behind the Scenes in Swamptopia (Kunstler)
Trump Pardons Flynn…It’s a Good Start! (Ron Paul)
We Can’t Vote ‘Em Out (Lee Camp)
Establishment Journalists Are Piling On To Smear Robert Fisk (Cook)

 

 

Fauci get kids back into school

 

 

How Churchill procured alcohol during prohibition.

 

 

White Hat hackers
https://twitter.com/i/status/1333500580287950849

 

 

“..statistically attributable..”

Vitamin D Insufficiency May Account for Almost 9 of 10 COVID19 Deaths (MDPI)

Evidence from observational studies is accumulating, suggesting that the majority of deaths due to SARS-CoV-2 infections are statistically attributable to vitamin D insufficiency and could potentially be prevented by vitamin D supplementation. Given the dynamics of the COVID-19 pandemic, rational vitamin D supplementation whose safety has been proven in an extensive body of research should be promoted and initiated to limit the toll of the pandemic even before the final proof of efficacy in preventing COVID-19 deaths by randomized trials. We read, with great interest, the recent article by Radujkovic et al. that reported associations between vitamin D deficiency (25(OH)D < 12 ng/mL) or insufficiency (25(OH)D < 20 ng/mL) and death in a cohort of 185 consecutive symptomatic SARS-CoV-2-positive patients admitted to the Medical University Hospital Heidelberg, who were diagnosed and treated between 18 March and 18 June 2020 [1].

In this cohort, 118 patients (64%) had vitamin D insufficiency at recruitment (including 41 patients with vitamin D deficiency), and 16 patients died of the infection. With a covariate-adjusted relative risk of death of 11.3, mortality was much higher among vitamin D insufficient patients than among other patients. When translated to the proportion of deaths in the population that is statistically attributable to vitamin D insufficiency (“population attributable risk proportion”), a key measure of public health relevance of risk factors [2], these results imply that 87% of COVID-19 deaths may be statistically attributed to vitamin D insufficiency and could potentially be avoided by eliminating vitamin D insufficiency.

Although results of an observational study, such as this one, need to be interpreted with caution, as done by the authors [1], due to the potential of residual confounding or reverse causality (i.e., vitamin D insufficiency resulting from poor health status at baseline rather than vice versa), it appears extremely unlikely that such a strong association in this prospective cohort study could be explained this way, in particular as the authors had adjusted for age, sex and comorbidity as potential confounders in their multivariate analysis. There are also multiple plausible mechanisms that may well explain the observed associations, such as increased concentrations of pro-inflammatory cytokines, as well as decreased concentrations of anti-inflammatory cytokines in vitamin D insufficiency..

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The timing for this report is a tad curious perhaps.

The Wuhan Files (CNN)

A group of frontline medical workers, likely exhausted, stand huddled together on a video-conference call as China’s most powerful man raises his hand in greeting. It is February 10 in Beijing and President Xi Jinping, who for weeks has been absent from public view, is addressing hospital staff in the city of Wuhan as they battle to contain the spread of a still officially unnamed novel coronavirus. From a secure room about 1,200 kilometers (745 miles) from the epicenter, Xi expressed his condolences to those who have died in the outbreak. He urged greater public communication, as around the world concerns mounted about the potential threat posed by the new disease. That same day, Chinese authorities reported 2,478 new confirmed cases — raising the total global number to more than 40,000, with fewer than 400 cases occurring outside of mainland China.

Yet CNN can now reveal how official documents circulated internally show that this was only part of the picture.In a report marked “internal document, please keep confidential,” local health authorities in the province of Hubei, where the virus was first detected, list a total of 5,918 newly detected cases on February 10, more than double the official public number of confirmed cases, breaking down the total into a variety of subcategories. This larger figure was never fully revealed at that time, as China’s accounting system seemed, in the tumult of the early weeks of the pandemic, to downplay the severity of the outbreak. The previously undisclosed figure is among a string of revelations contained within 117 pages of leaked documents from the Hubei Provincial Center for Disease Control and Prevention, shared with and verified by CNN.


Taken together, the documents amount to the most significant leak from inside China since the beginning of the pandemic and provide the first clear window into what local authorities knew internally and when. The Chinese government has steadfastly rejected accusations made by the United States and other Western governments that it deliberately concealed information relating to the virus, maintaining that it has been upfront since the beginning of the outbreak. However, though the documents provide no evidence of a deliberate attempt to obfuscate findings, they do reveal numerous inconsistencies in what authorities believed to be happening and what was revealed to the public.

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You’re not going to “regain” them, they will have to be new jobs.

It Could Take 4 Years To Regain The 22 Million Jobs Lost During COVID19 (F.)

As the bull market for stocks rages on and even bests pre-pandemic levels, some American households are bouncing back much more slowly than others, unearthing a pattern indicative of a K-shaped (or lopsided) economic recovery, Goldman Sachs said on Sunday–and without additional fiscal relief, it could take years for employment to fully recover. The biggest driver of the K-shaped recovery taking shape is that pandemic job losses were “highly concentrated in virus-sensitive industries” like retail, leisure and hospitality–all of which disproportionately employ low-wage workers, Goldman analyst Joseph Briggs wrote in a weekend note. Some companies have turned to technology in an effort to boost productivity in the absence of real workers, and it’s working (which is bad news for American workers).

Productivity is up 4% this year despite major job losses, according to Moody’s Analytics, which now estimates the 22 million jobs lost this spring won’t come back until early 2024. While stimulus measures have helped keep overall disposable income afloat during the pandemic, Americans making less than $30 per hour are feeling the most economic pain. Slowed wage growth has also been markedly worse for lower-income workers–further contributing to the disparate economic recovery, the Goldman report goes on to say. Goldman projects a lack of new fiscal relief will cause a fourth-quarter decline in disposable income that will hit the bottom 25% of earners “particularly hard,” while also weighing on consumer spending this winter.

The outlook for lower-income workers will get “significantly worse” if Congress doesn’t pass another fiscal stimulus package of at least $700 billion in the first quarter, Goldman notes, adding that additional relief coupled with widespread vaccination could actually help yield a V-shaped recovery, which is characteristic of a quicker, more equitable economic bounceback. “The largest pandemic casualties have been less productive industries including retailing, leisure and hospitality, while the biggest winners have been in more productive industries like technology, wholesaling and professional services,” Moody’s Analytics Chief Economist Mark Zandi said in a weekend note, adding that within industries, smaller businesses have fared worse than their larger, more productive counterparts, which are more able to afford large investments in technology and organizational changes.

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Shopkeepers will become Amazo delivery workers.

Black Friday Foot Traffic Down More Than 52% (RetailDive)

With COVID-19 cases hitting new highs, it comes as little surprise that many shoppers opted to stay away from physical stores this year. That said, the differences between Black Friday 2020 and those that preceded it were stark. “Our traditional store checks over the holiday weekend were like none other we’ve ever experienced in our lifetime — no hustle and bustle, no lines at the register,” said MKM Partners Managing Director Roxanne Meyer in an emailed research note. Retailers have anticipated and prepared for that, even nudged consumers into changing up their holiday shopping plans to keep them from packing into stores. Major players like Walmart and Target have been spreading Black Friday-like discounts through the month of November and encouraging online purchases and curbside pickup.


Many also followed Amazon’s lead by launching online sales events in October, which pulled holiday purchases into the month and heralded the beginning of the holiday shopping spree. Black Friday still had a major impact. Sales in the U.S. were up 177% Friday against their October average, according to Criteo data emailed to Retail Dive. By category, fashion was up 240%, consumer electronics were up 359% and home goods were up 148%. However, year-over-year Black Friday sales were down 5%, meaning that even the online sales surge couldn’t fully make up for the lost foot traffic. Criteo’s data shows, however, that the prior weeks’ discounting may have affected sales on Black Friday itself — which was the plan among retailers all along. Sales in the first three weeks of November were up 7% year over year, Criteo said.

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Tax the crap out of them.

US Billionaires Have Gained $1 Trillion Since The Pandemic Started (ZH)

American billionaires haven’t been just immune to the pandemic, they have been thriving in it, drastically increasing their collective wealth. An analysis by Chuck Collins at the Institute for Policy Studies found that American billionaires have been their wealth grow by $1 trillion since March of this year – more than 34 percent. That was not the case during the 2008 financial crisis when it took Forbes’ 400 richest people three years to recoup their losses from the Great Recession. Collins’ findings highlight a wealth gain by a mere 650 individuals that, as Statista’s Niall McCarthy notes, seems obscene at a time when nearly 7 million Americans are at risk of eviction when moratoriums expire at the end of the year.


There are 650 billionaires on the list, out of which 47 are new arrivals with 11 dropping out due to death or financial decline. There were numerous impressive financial gains among notable billionaires on the lit with Jeff Bezos growing his fortune by $69.4 billion between March 17 and November 24. The Amazon boss and richest man on the planet is now with $182.4 billion. The most impressive gain on the list was recorded by Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk who has seen his fortune experience a meteoric rise. In the above period, his weath surged a whopping 414 percent, climbing from “just” $24.6 billion to $126.2 billion, making him the world’s second richest man after Bezos. Illustrating the gulf in financial inequality in the U.S. today, the analysis states that U.S. billionaires own $4 trillion, 3.5 percent of all privately held wealth in the country. Billionaire wealth is now twice the amount of wealth held by the bottom 50 percent of all American households combined, approximately 160 million people.

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By running a plan the Dems used extensively.

Trump’s Hill Allies Could Take One Last Shot To Overturn The Election (Pol.)

The framers declared that the presidential election isn’t official until lawmakers certify the winner. The voters, on Nov. 3, picked 306 electors for Biden and 232 for Trump. Those electors will cast their formal votes for president on Dec. 14. An obscure 1887 law called the Electoral Count Act, and several subsequent updates, spell out the process, setting Jan. 6 after a presidential election as the official certification date and outlining vague, complicated procedures. On that day, the House and Senate meet in a joint session at 1 p.m. — just three days after a newly constituted Congress is sworn in. One of their first orders of business is to pass judgment on the Electoral College vote. That same federal law also gives a tiny number of lawmakers enormous power to challenge the results.

If a single House member and a single senator join forces, they can object to entire slates of presidential electors. They must do so in writing and provide an explanation, though there are no guidelines on how detailed it must be. If they do, the House and Senate must retreat to their chambers and debate the outcome for up to two hours before voting on the matter. Each state’s electors are certified separately, meaning lawmakers bent on challenging the results have multiple chances to force lengthy delays. If the Democrat-run House and GOP-controlled Senate disagree? That outcome has never been tested before, though it would likely give governors in key states — including the Democrats who lead Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan — a larger role.

A few House Democrats have previously tried and failed to challenge GOP presidencies in 2001 and 2017 — after Al Gore and Hillary Clinton won the national popular vote but lost the Electoral College to George W. Bush and Trump, respectively. And congressional Democrats went even further in 2005, when John Kerry lost to Bush, forcing a full-fledged debate on Ohio’s electoral votes before both the House and Senate voted to reject the challenge.

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“..defending a private, foreign company’s “trade secrets” instead of attempting to secure the vote of the American public..”

GA Govt Lawyers Defend Dominion ‘Trade Secrets’ To Stop Forensic Analysis (NP)

A buried lead in Judge Timothy C. Batten’s order released late last night from an Atlantic District Court describes Georgia State lawyers – ostensibly acting on behalf of the public via the local government – defending Dominion Voting Systems’ “trade secrets”. The court ordered that voting software and information contained therein should not be destroyed, or erased or altered in Cobb, Gwinnett, and Cherokee Counties. But the order also revealed: “Defendants’ counsel also argued that allowing such forensic inspections would pose substantial security and proprietary/trade secret risks to Defendants.”


The bizarre nature of government lawyers defending a private, foreign company’s “trade secrets” instead of attempting to secure the vote of the American public will raise further questions about the company’s involvement in U.S. voting systems. The term “trade secret” is used no fewer than NINE times in the contract between Georgia and Dominion Voting Systems.

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Is she what the country deserves?

Neera Tanden: Unhinged, Venomous, Corrupt, Pathologically Dishonest (Greenwald)

The announcement that Joe Biden intends to nominate Neera Tanden as his Director of the Office of Management and Budget — a critical position overseeing U.S. economic and regulatory policy — triggered a wide range of mockery, indignation and disgust from both the left and the right. That should not be surprising: though a thoroughly mediocre and ordinary D.C. swamp creature from the perspective of both ideology and competence, Tanden’s uniquely unhinged, venomous, corrupt and pathologically dishonest conduct as a Clinton Family and DNC apparatchik and President of the corporatist-and-despot-funded Center for American Progress (CAP) has earned her a list of enemies far longer and more impressive than her accomplishments.

[..] Tanden owes her entire career to the patronage of Hillary Clinton, and her devotion to Hillary approaches restraining-order levels of creepiness (here you can watch Tanden beam with adoration as then-Senator Hillary Clinton, on the Senate floor in 2004, explains her steadfast opposition to marriage equality for same-sex couples on the ground that “marriage is a sacred bond between a man and a woman” and “exists between a man and a woman going back into the mists of history” for the primary purpose of raising children — just a few short years before Democrats changed views on this, after which it instantly became the hallmark of an unreconstructed hateful bigot to say this). Few people took Hillary’s 2016 loss to Donald Trump as hard as Tanden, or handled it as poorly. Indeed, she refused to believe it really happened, and encouraged others to similarly refuse to accept its reality.

In the weeks after Trump’s victory, Tanden joined numerous Democrats in encouraging electors of the Electoral College to ignore their states’ votes and refuse to elect Trump as President (many rationale were invoked for this: Tanden’s was a CAP article promoting #Resistance fanatic Richard Painter’s argument that Trump’s violations of the Emolument Clause precluded an Electoral College win). She insisted that Hillary lost because of Russia, claiming the “Russians did enough damage to affect more than 70k votes in 3 states.” And she was not only one of the first to push the Steele Dossier’s claim that Russia held blackmail power over Trump but also one of the last to do so — insisting in 2018 that “the dossier been mostly proven to be true” and claiming as late as 2019 that nothing in this discredited junk report had been disproven.

But what really distinguished Tanden when it came to unhinged and toxic behavior was her repeated (and obviously baseless) claims that Hillary only lost because Russian hackers invaded the U.S. voting system and clandestinely changed Hillary’s votes to Trump’s, costing the real winner — Hillary — her rightful place on the throne, behind the Resolute Desk.

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The left doesn’t like Tanden either.

Biden Picks Budget Director Who Pushed Social Security Cuts (DP)

President-elect Joe Biden will reportedly nominate a White House budget director who has been one of the country’s most prominent critics of U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders and who has previously backed Social Security cuts. Biden — who has repeatedly pushed for Social Security cuts throughout his career — announced his selection of Center for American Progress president Neera Tanden as his choice to run the powerful White House Office of Management and Budget. A longtime aide to Hillary Clinton, Tanden touted her think tank’s 2010 proposal to reduce Social Security benefits in 2012, as Biden was pushing for such cuts in the Obama administration. Tanden’s Social Security push followed the 2010 midterms, during the deficit reduction negotiations between the Obama administration and the new GOP Congress.

Republicans drew a hard line but Obama sought a middle ground. Central to the administration’s efforts, which were led by Biden, was a plan called the “chained CPI” that would have slowed the rate at which Social Security benefits increase over time. Sanders led the fight in the Senate against chained CPI, while outside groups were divided over whether to line up behind the president. Some, like the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, vocally opposed the cuts. The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a liberal think tank, found that the chained CPI “would cut Social Security retirement benefits by about 2 percent, on average.” The organization, nevertheless, said it would support the concept under certain conditions.

Tanden’s CAP, at the time considered to be the largest liberal think tank in Washington, also supported the idea and was a significant voice in favor of the administration’s plan. Tanden explained her views in a February 2012 C-SPAN interview. Asked by a caller about entitlement reform, she named Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid as targets for possible cuts, noting that “the president has $300 million in his budget in cuts in Medicare.” “That comes on top of cuts in Medicare for the Affordable Care Act. So he has put specific cuts in the budget in Medicare,” she said. “And they had savings in Medicaid in the past. I think the question really is: If we’re going to have a deal to address long-term deficit reduction, we need to put both entitlements on the table as well as taxes.”

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Russiagate in the flesh.

“..she ordered a federal department to refuse to assist the president…”

The Case Against Sally Yates (Turley)

As Joe Biden fills out his Cabinet, more attention is drawn to the position of attorney general and one of the most cited names on the short list, which is Sally Yates. Her consideration is surprising for a president-elect who has pledged to unify the country and move beyond the destructive politics of the last four years. I always admired the obvious talent and intellect of Yates. But my overall assessment of her changed dramatically almost four years ago, when she staged an epic battle with a newly inaugurated President Trump and thereby forged her own legend. Yates had only a few days left in government when she became acting attorney general in January 2017, following the departure of Attorney General Loretta Lynch.

One week later, Trump signed an executive order that restricted travel to the United States from seven Muslim majority countries. Yates then took the unprecedented step of ordering the Justice Department to refuse to assist the president in implementing the ban. I was an early critic of the travel ban, which had glaring errors like the absence of exceptions for legal residents or green-card holders. (Those errors were corrected in an amended order.) The ban was an issue upon which Trump campaigned and won the presidency and he wanted to move in that first week to carry out some of his core promises. But the order was poorly drafted, poorly executed and, ultimately, poorly defended. Yates could have worked with the White House to seek changes, as would later occur; instead, she ordered a federal department to refuse to assist the president.

[..] This was not her only controversy. Yates signed off on the application for secret surveillance of Carter Page, which was found by the inspector general to be riddled with errors and based on faulty information. Page was never charged with any crime. There is no indication that Yates made any substantive inquiries on the basis for the application, which she now says she would not have signed if she knew what she knows today. She just signed it and assumed it was legal, despite the targeting of a campaign aide in the opposing party. Yates also showed little concern over the basis for investigating Michael Flynn, another key aide to the incoming president of the opposing party.

While she recently expressed a lack of clear memory on the issue, prior reports linked her to raising the possible use against Flynn of the Logan Act, a notoriously unconstitutional law that has never been used to secure a single conviction since its creation in 1799. The basis was Flynn’s conversations with Russian diplomats shortly before becoming Trump’s national security adviser. There was nothing unlawful or even uncommon in such a communication. Indeed, then FBI Director James Comey reportedly told President Obama and Vice President Biden that the meetings appeared legitimate. Yet Yates reportedly went to the White House to raise the alarm and, in a 2017 interview, she had no memory problems in declaring that “there is certainly a criminal statute that was implicated” by the conduct of Flynn.

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“Do you suppose that Gen. Flynn does not know about the agency’s cyber-warfare capabilities?”

Behind the Scenes in Swamptopia (Kunstler)

There is the matter of the Kraken. Perhaps Sidney Powell was not speaking just figuratively about the lurking monster of the deep. The Kraken, apparently, is an actual computer system developed by the Department of Defense (DOD) to ferret out malevolent computer programs as might be deployed in cyber-warfare… or janky elections. Miz Powell has had legal consort all year with General Mike Flynn, the former chief of the Defense Intelligence Agency railroaded on a fake charge by the FBI, now pardoned, free to speak and act. Do you suppose that Gen. Flynn does not know about the agency’s cyber-warfare capabilities? Or that he does not know skilled military technicians who can spell out, say, in a court of law, exactly how the Kraken might be put to use? Or how the Kraken intersects with the two CIA proprietary election hacking programs, Hammer and Scorecard?

Next, there is the matter of where these agencies stand with each other these days. It was not for nothing that the president sacked cheeky Sec’y of Defense Mark Esper and replaced him with Christopher Miller, a Special Forces warrior, lately, as Deputy Assistant Sec-Def, in charge of counterterrorism, Military Information Support Operations (MISO), Information Operations, unconventional warfare, irregular warfare, direct action, special reconnaissance, foreign internal defense, counter proliferation, sensitive special operations. Kind of sounds a little bit like exactly the skill-set you’d need to battle the rogue “resistance” operations across several US government agencies in their four-year quest to overthrow the chief executive climaxing in this election caper — for one example, the CIA.

Somehow, when I think of the CIA, I think of the sinister John Brennan, architect of RussiaGate and probably also somehow behind the activation of his protégé, “whistleblower” (and CIA agent) Eric Ciaramella, the impeachment mole who was allowed to retreat back into the CIA fortress with no consequences after his seditious deed was done. Notice, Mr. Brennan has been tweeting like mad in recent days denouncing election skeptics. Is he worried about something? All of which raises the questions: what role did the agency play in the election, with its mystifying vote-tallying irregularities? Does Mr. Brennan still wield influence in the CIA? And is the agency an enemy of the people?

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Not pardoning Snowden and Assange would be nuts.

Trump Pardons Flynn…It’s a Good Start! (Ron Paul)

Last week President Trump granted a “full pardon” to Gen. Michael Flynn, his first National Security Advisor. In a White House statement announcing the pardon, the Administration pointed out that the relentless pursuit of Flynn was a partisan effort to overturn the results of the 2016 election. The pursuit of Flynn was spearheaded by people who refused to accept the results of the 2016 election and worked to undermine the peaceful transfer of power, said the White House. These same people are the ones accusing Trump of undermining the election by challenging what appears to be serious voting irregularities in the 2020 presidential election. That is called “projection.”

The White House statement also cites partisans in politics, the media, and the Deep State which sought to prevent Trump from being elected, to prevent him from taking office once elected, and to remove him on false pretenses once in office. In order to push the false narrative that Trump was somehow elected due to the intervention of Russian President Vladimir Putin, the coup-masters had to make it appear that a high-ranking official was involved in monkey business with the Russians. Flynn was the unlucky victim of their smear machine, accused of “Russia collusion” over an innocent telephone call with the then-Russian Ambassador in Washington during the transition to a Trump Administration.

Yet when Joe Biden’s transition people bragged recently that Biden was connecting with foreign officials before inaugurated, the media praised it as a welcome return of the “experts” to foreign policy. While it is very good news that President Trump is in the mood to pardon those victims of the warmongering Deep State, I very much hope that he is only warming up. It would be a great tragedy if other Deep State victims are left to suffer for their non-crimes. Tweeting about her legislation that calls for charges against Edward Snowden and Julian Assange to be dropped and the Espionage Act reformed, US Rep. Tulsi Gabbard told President Trump, “since you’re giving pardons to people, please consider pardoning those who, at great personal sacrifice, exposed the deception and criminality of those in the deep state.”

My good friend Rep. Thomas Massie, a Ron Paul Institute Board Member, is a co-sponsor of Rep. Gabbard’s legislation, making it a real bipartisan effort to restore the rule of law in the United States and to rein in the Beltway warmongers. Edward Snowden and Julian Assange are not criminals. They are heroes for telling us the truth about what criminals in government were doing in our name and with our money. The fact is we were lied into war over and over again. While those wars were profitable for the military-industrial-Congressional-media complex, they snuffed out the lives of hundreds of thousands of innocent people overseas and robbed our own children and grandchildren of trillions of dollars wasted on neocon lies.

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“We already know that Biden’s first national security briefing included two board members of the massive defense contractor Raytheon.”

We Can’t Vote ‘Em Out (Lee Camp)

It doesn’t matter when you read this, the assholes will still be in power. I know that because here in America we can’t vote out the assholes. We can trouble them, scare them, annoy them, and sometimes even pressure them into doing some small thing that’s mildly progressive. But we can’t vote out the assholes. Of course, right now, if you’re a Joe Biden supporter, you’re yelling out loud to your laptop or phone, “That’s not true! We just DID! We just did vote out the assholes!” And I’m not arguing that Donald Trump and his motley squad of parasitic shit stains aren’t awful. (They are “parashits,” if you will. Copyright pending.) I’m not arguing Trump’s goons aren’t awful. I’m just saying that if you even take a momentary peak at the people Biden is already putting in power for his transition and his future cabinet, they’re still more assholes.

He’s putting war hawks in charge of creating peace, fossil-fuel puppets in charge of fixing the environment, propaganda enthusiasts in charge of the media and cops in charge of fixing a brutal white supremacist police system. I’m pretty sure he’s getting ready to put Rudy Giuliani in charge of election integrity, and a dead skunk who formerly worked for Dow Chemical as the head of the EPA. We can’t vote out the assholes. We already know that Biden’s first national security briefing included two board members of the massive defense contractor Raytheon. Raytheon CEO Gregory Hayes said in a CNBC interview a couple months ago that it would be “ridiculous” to think military spending will be cut under Biden. But it doesn’t stop there.

We now know Biden’s pick for defense secretary is Michele Flournoy and his selection for secretary of state is Tony Blinken. As The Grayzone has reported, these two have played central roles in all the wars waged by Democratic presidents all the way back to Bill Clinton. But to give Biden the benefit of the doubt, it makes sense that one would want a defense secretary with a standard American war criminal past because otherwise they wouldn’t know their way around the Pentagon. You don’t want to get a new guy (or gal) in there as head of our murder machine, and he’s bumbling around muttering, “What lever do I pull to blow up a village in Somalia? I’m sorry. I wasn’t paying attention during the introductory tour. I thought I launched a drone bomb in Libya this morning, and it turned out to be just the button for the coffee machine. But the cappuccino was great. I will say that.”

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Smells of what happened to Assange.

Establishment Journalists Are Piling On To Smear Robert Fisk (Cook)

Something remarkable even by the usually dismal standards of the stenographic media blue-tick brigade has been happening in the past few days. Leading journalists in the corporate media have suddenly felt the urgent need not only to criticise the late, much-respected foreign correspondent Robert Fisk, but to pile in against him, using the most outrageous smears imaginable. He is suddenly a fraud, a fabulist, a fantasist, a liar. What is most ironic is that the journalists doing this are some of the biggest frauds themselves, journalists who have made a career out of deceiving their readers. In fact, many of the crowd attacking Fisk when he can no longer defend himself are precisely the journalists who have the worst record of journalistic malpractice and on some of the biggest issues of our times.

At least I have the courage to criticise them while they are alive. They know dead men can’t sue. It is complete and utter cowardice to attack Fisk when they could have made their comments earlier, to his face. In fact, if they truly believed any of the things they are so keen to tell us now, they had an absolute duty to say them when Fisk was alive rather than allowing the public to be deceived by someone they regarded as a liar and fantasist. They didn’t make public these serious allegations – they didn’t air their concerns about the supposedly fabricated facts in Fisk’s stories – when he was alive because they know he would have made mincemeat of them.

Most preposterous of all is the fact that the actual trigger for this sudden, very belated outpouring of concern about Fisk is a hit-piece written by Oz Katerji. I’m not sure whether I can find the generosity to call Katerji a journalist. Like Elliot Higgins of the US government-funded Bellingcat, he’s more like an attack dog beloved by establishment blue-ticks: he is there to enforce accepted western imperial narratives, disguising his lock-step support for the establishment line as edgy, power-to-the-people radicalism.

Read more …

 

 

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Home Forums Debt Rattle December 1 2020

Viewing 27 posts - 1 through 27 (of 27 total)
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  • #66223

    Vincent van Gogh Women Picking Olives 1889   • Vitamin D Insufficiency May Account for Almost 9 of 10 COVID19 Deaths (MDPI) • The Wuhan Files (CN
    [See the full post at: Debt Rattle December 1 2020]

    #66224
    V. Arnold
    Participant

    I’m fine everybody. Just needed a break…
    I am truly humbled by these responses; thank you all very much.
    Gobsmacked is another adjective that is apropos…
    TAE is like a white cane, guiding us through a world we can’t quite clearly see…
    I’ve never doubted TAE’s relevance and importance; just my own part/contribution…
    I like the idea of being a part of TAE’s furniture (thanks Polder Dweller)… 😉

    Boogaloo also e-mailed me this morning wondering what was going on…

    zerosum
    I’m missing the wisdom and inputs from V. Arnold.
    Raúl Ilargi Meijer
    Yes, zero, I was wondering about V. Arnold as well
    Polder Dweller
    I hope V. Arnold is OK – he’s part of the TAE furniture.
    sumac.carol
    I miss V. Arnold too.
    John Day
    I hope V.Arnold is OK.
    VietnamVet
    I miss V.A. too.

    #66226
    Basseterre Kitona
    Participant

    The Vitamin D deficiency info is hardly surprising. As this vitamin is created by sun exposure, North Americans and Northern Europeans have been suffering from it for year now. Especially given the sometimes fanatical efforts of some people to avoid the sun because it “causes cancer”,

    Supplements help, but firstly, people need to get outside more and into the sunshine. Leave the fear in the basement with Biden & lock the cellar doors. Too many health benefits to even list.

    #66227
    upstateNYer
    Participant

    Doc Robinson (from yesterday). Thank you! The prb.org link is interesting. I saved that one.

    #66228
    madamski
    Participant

    @ V. Arnold

    Being an inveterate trickster, I refrained from wondering where you’d gone or expressing worry about your well-being. Humor being my staunchest ally after love, I wanted to but refrained from wisecracking that if Raul et al wanted you to stick around, paintings by Jackson Pollock and the like needed to be replaced with something like Vermeer or Corot.

    Today, Raul posts a lovely Van Gogh and voila! V. Arnold is back.

    ‘It’s the art, stupid.’

    Nicolas Roerich

    #66229
    zerosum
    Participant

    Population control
    Only those who deserve it

    Iranian Nuclear Program Gains Steam Following Assassination Of “Nuclear Soleimani” Near Tehran
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_assassinations_by_the_United_States#:~:text=Successful%20assassinations%20%20%20%20Target%20%20,%20%20Yemen%20%2014%20more%20rows%20
    This is a list of individuals who have been the targets of assassination by the United States. American authorities usually define these killings as ‘targeted killings’.

    US Has Killed More Than 20 Million People in 37 “Victim Nations” Since World War II


    This carefully researched article by James A. Lucas documents the more than 20 million lives lost resulting from US led wars, military coups and intelligence ops carried out in the wake of what is euphemistically called the “post-war era” (1945- ). The extensive loss of life in Lebanon, Syria, Yemen and Libya is not included in this study.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_killings_by_law_enforcement_officers_in_the_United_States,_June_2020
    This is a list of people reported killed by non-military law enforcement officers in the United States in June 2020, (in one day), whether in the line of duty or not, and regardless of reason or method. (37 individuals)

    #66230
    zerosum
    Participant

    Vitamin D is coming

    SpaceWeather warns that from Dec. 1-2, Sunday’s M4.4-class solar flare might sideswipe Earth’s magnetic field.
    https://www.zerohedge.com/technology/biggest-solar-flare-strikes-earth-years-ahead-super-active-solar-cycle

    Covid19 …. because of the sun

    #66231

    ZS: The sun is finally “waking up” and currently has some serious sunspots.
    It makes me happy.
    “Just needed a break.” Welcome back VA. I know what you mean.

    #66232
    Dr. D
    Participant

    “you’ve seen it gone offshore to Frankfurt, Germany?”

    We have heard that it went to a CIA center, as they perpetually try to depose the President. We heard there was a firefight when they came in and took the servers. We heard several people were killed and reported as a helicopter crash. But one hears a lot of things.

    “It Could Take 4 Years to Regain The 22 Million Jobs Lost During COVID19 (F.)”

    Meh. Like the Great Depression, there’s nothing wrong with the economy: people still need things, we still have all the resources, and everybody’s willing to punch the clock to turn #2 into #1. You just need to stop intentionally murdering the economy so the rich can buy up the distressed assets by intentionally murdering the poor. But it’s like talking to a wall: “King George/King Louis/Jeff Bezos would never Blockade Boston/let the poor starve/transfer all small business to his pocket at the rate of $171,000/per employee in 6 months” They’re my Daddy! They’re my Friend! Fauc-U would never lie when he contradicts himself newly each day. He follows the Science.

    Grow up. We can turn the economy on full blast in 60 seconds. Enforce the law. Bankruptcy law. Assembly law: the 1st law in the whole nation. Anti-trust law. Any law at all, just start somewhere. But that would be #Logos.

    “Walmart Thanks Government for Completely Obliterating Their Small Business Competition”

    When you have a merger of corporation and state, we call it what? And that system is known for what, historically? A) Fascism. B) Mass murder. Right on schedule, as predicted, with riotous cheers of approval and adoration. Please more! Please! We love our King/Chancellor/Fuhrer/National Health Director.

    “Tax the crap out of them.”

    Um, the people who run the multi-merged system are going to tax themselves? And when they tax themselves, therefore take the money for themselves to distribute to…themselves? The Government is NOT different from the monopolies right now. They ARE the monopolies. So we’ll tax the monopolies to pay the monopolies. And why? Because this kiting-scheme fools people into not showing up with the necessary pitchforks. Daddy government is our friend. Daddy will help.

    No, they won’t. THEY’RE the sole reason these monopolies exist, they’d have long been destroyed by competition if not for the D.C. protection racket.

    “Tanden”

    I’m seeing hazy outlines, and if this is the worst election in 200 years – which is necessary to reveal and straighten things out – then the Contingent Election plan is on, as well telegraphed, Military Intel is going to start breaking things, yes, BUT: who are you going to present your election and/or other evidence to? State Assemblies? Pudunk Court Judge? Congress? They’re the criminals who supported this, save the 10% just elected. So I expect SCOTUS will rule, they will present to the House/Congress, who will simply refuse to act. Ever. I mean, they’ve never done their jobs before, why start now? So you have a freeze: both/neither President Both/neither Congress both/neither military. And they standoff for months, piddling with court cases and delays.

    …Which to me is good, since as I’ve said, we can kill a million people in about 20 minutes, in any city of any state. And the DNC blue checkmarks are out daily saying we should create the hit lists. Delaying’s not bad. It’s siege warfare instead. The new Aquarian warfare, of propaganda and the mind. Fine by me. Never cared about any of them anyway, don’t want anything from them, and the busier they are, the more they leave me alone. …Like bars in Staten Island throwdown to DeBlasio and the Governor, hand-gun-armed joggers visiting gun-free D.C. by the hundreds and the police merely wave.

    What makes me think so? The DoD “Kraken” is common knowledge now, even for Kunstler. That targets who? The CIA. And their overseas office in Hamburg. The expat-military/DeepState is attacking the Domestic military/DeepState. That’s what, children? “AmericaFirst” vs, as Joe would say, “America not first,” i.e. the global empire and globalists. Corporations, in a way. That’s been the whole noodle since the generals lost Bush’s gambit to take over the world: retreat and recover in our borders, or double-down planetwide and lose all, including our souls. Nation vs Empire. It was always coming. Maybe since 1820, “Monroe Doctrine” and the “Empire” Style https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Empire_style

    “Establishment Journalists Are Piling on to Smear Robert Fisk (Cook)”

    An adult American said it, AND they have a checkmark, therefore it is a lie. Gosh life is simple sometimes.

    #66234

    Affidavit of Dr Navid Keshavarz-Nia Phd: (available over at scribd)
    “My analysis of the 2020 Election from NY Times data shows statistical anomalies across the battleground state votes. These failures are widespread and systemic – and sufficient to invalidate the vote counts.
    “I conclude with high confidence that the election 2020 data were altered in all battleground states resulting in hundreds of thousands of votes that were cast for President Trump to be transferred to Vice President Biden.”

    This guy has some serious credentials.

    #66235
    Susmarie108
    Participant

    @madamski: LOVE your keen observations (including bub-bye Pollack). The art of making magic is always in motion. A sincere Heart with clear intention delivers: “Today, Raul posts a lovely Van Gogh and voila! V. Arnold is back.”

    Souls unite in the PRESENCE of beautiful art. The Vincent van Gogh Women Picking Olives 1889 is a harmonious and serene expression. The brush-stroked curvy waves of complimentary, subtle colors moves us into this glorious moment. Captivating! The sky. Soft rounded edges everywhere, painted with ease seen in the women and trees. The only straight lines form the ladder and create a strong focal and gathering point. Listen carefully and you will hear laughter floating through the trees, ringing – like the happy chatter of playful songbirds. The simple rituals of daily living come to life.

    #66236

    Something tells me Van Gogh would have understood and loved abstract art like Jackson Pollock’s. Vincent himself was already on his way there. A look at the colors and shapes he used even just in this painting make that very clear. A pinkish sky?! And look at the field, not exactly figurative art, but abstract. Vincent started with recognizable shapes, but was already going for feeling, much more than reason, i.e. recognition. If you look only at that field, it could have been Pollock. Only, the latter infused that with much
    more energy. At a certain point, it’s no longer about what do you see, but what do you feel.

    #66237
    sumac.carol
    Participant

    Those of you with a strong artistic sensibility, please continue to share – for those of us who do not have much to offer in this Dept, it is like a breath of fresh humanity.

    #66239
    Susmarie108
    Participant

    “At a certain point, it’s no longer about what do you see, but what do you feel.”

    Yes. From seeing to feeling and BEYOND.

    I agree that Van Gogh would have understood and appreciated Pollock’s works.

    Since TAE Gallery posts one piece at a time, it is natural to react to the ONE piece in front of you. This is my experience – and it does not always serve me well. The Jackson Pollock Greyed Rainbow 1953 from yesterday was disturbing. It fit my mood + matched the news perfectly. And so I roamed the grey zone most of the morning.

    This conversation creates an opening for me to revisit my reaction. It’s all about perspective. When viewing multiple Pollock works another picture emerges. His work is created, is driven/inspired totally by FEELING and not sight. Voila!

    It feels like WE are living in an abstract world now more than ever. Welcome pink skies and greyed rainbows.

    #66240
    WES
    Participant

    Because I am a logical technical type person, devining the feelings of an artist’s art is basically lost on me unless someone explains it to me. I had the same problem explaining Shakespeare’s plays to my English Lit teachers who could see it so clearly, when I could not. I did, however, greatly admire Shakespeare’s incredible ability with words.

    That is not to say I don’t appreciate art. That so many paint but fail, shows how difficult it is to become a great painter. I tend to focus on the skill of the images painted.

    Since I can draw quite well, I do have some basic artistic abilities. I choose to hone those skills in the engineering field. I tend to design things I want to build on the back of envelopes!

    In my travels I have always visited the great art museums of Rome, Athens, Madrid, Paris, London, Brussels, etc,.

    Up here in the great white north, my Father met one of Canada’s Group of 7 painters, A. Y. Jackson, up in Northern Quebec/Labrador. He came up to do pencil field sketches which he would then take back to his studio.

    Now my Father, an engineer, was even better at drawing than I am. He directed his talents into all kinds of wood carvings. We still have his Loons and Blue Jays. Naturally I can carve too but more into wooden airplanes. My Father’s Father was studying to be an architect when the depression hit. Now my Grandfather could really draw!

    And did I mention my Daughter attended a special 4 year art high school? Yes, she can really draw!

    That ability to draw has now been passed down through 3 generations!

    #66241
    straightwalker
    Participant

    @WES

    Love the story, three generations of people who care. I started drawing at 70 without a clue. Betty Edwards book helped me a lot. Here’s something I wrote about it:

    Why Draw?

    Talk has limitations. Vocabulary is ever shifting and is shared imperfectly. Talk is necessarily linear, one word at a time, excellent for lists, describing events in time, cause and effect, but it is clumsy at describing, say, the New York subway system or the liberation of first love.

    I’m not the first writer to have begun painting in his or her dotage. Perhaps I’ve not much left to say. Perhaps I’m inhibited by the suspicion that our culture has talked too much.

    Our schools teach students that the road to success is paved with correct answers, generally, correct words. The correct answer for a power hitting third baseman is a home run. The correct answer for a chef is a sauce that enhances without overwhelming. Correct words are distinctly secondary in most endeavors, it turns out.

    Why draw? A camera does a better job of preserving light reflected from the subject. Photography is the tool of choice for archiving. Drawing involves sustained attention: the more you look, the more you see. There is action and reaction as the drawing develops; a relationship forms between you and the subject. Feeling influences your hand. The drawing is modeling the subject and how you feel about it. Your light mingles with that of the subject. A drawing discovers and celebrates; it is both egotistical and profoundly humble.

    Finally. Because a drawing stills time, it leads to the present moment, the ultimate reward.

    #66242
    WES
    Participant

    Interesting day in the swamp!

    Bill Barr sees no election fraud. So Biden is now in the clear.

    Durham has been turned from a DofJ prosecutor into a truly harmless special prosecutor!

    Trump’s legal options are now zero! No judge will now hear his rigged election case.

    The swamp has now won 100%!

    P.S. Turning a DofJ prosecutor into a Special prosecutor is a very nasty trick that congress plays on the American voters. It sounds good but the reality is Durham now reports directly to Congress’s politicians! This guarantees that nobody will be prosecuted!

    #66243
    V. Arnold
    Participant

    madamski

    Today, Raul posts a lovely Van Gogh and voila! V. Arnold is back.

    ‘It’s the art, stupid.’

    Indeed, the art; lost without it…

    Basseterre Kitona

    Supplements help, but firstly, people need to get outside more and into the sunshine. Leave the fear in the basement with Biden & lock the cellar doors. Too many health benefits to even list.

    Absolutely true; it’s where I get my D3; good ‘ol Sol…

    #66244
    John Day
    Participant

    Good find on that vitamin-D article. I had been openly speculating a relationship of approximately that magnitode more than once , today.
    V.Arnold: Sawat Di Krap, Mate! Glad you are OK. The banana patch is planted down in Yoakum, and it got it’s first freeze last night. I may replace some plants in March, if there is a lot of difference in response to this winter.
    Dr.D. Serious speculation today, man. Where do you “hear those things”?
    Wes: Drawing is practical. I do it for practical reasons.
    @All-Y’all: I liked the Van Gough museum a LOT, and the Don McLean “Starry Starry Night” song.
    I liked to paint murals in college. I made drawings first, then overlaid a grid, and color schemes. It took a long time. Glad I did it when I could. I only made 4, but they were nice.

    #66245
    John Day
    Participant

    Ah, Dr.D. (Dr Demento? A good show, that) I see you got some of that rumor from Kunstler, but not the part about the casualties and faking a chopper accident to explain them.
    DIA vs CIA? MAD Magazine? Which spy is white?

    #66246
    V. Arnold
    Participant

    V.Arnold: Sawat Di Krap, Mate! Glad you are OK. The banana patch is planted down in Yoakum, and it got it’s first freeze last night. I may replace some plants in March, if there is a lot of difference in response to this winter.

    Thanks and Sawat Di Krap to you as well.
    Well, you’re in new territory for this one; freezing cold here is 18°c… 😉
    The picture of your banana patch looked great; it will be interesting to see if the plants survive that; I have no idea.

    #66247
    madamski
    Participant

    Art like Pollock’s mostly evokes no feeling in me. Get too abstract and my emotions have nothing to hang their purse on even if, like yesterday’s Pollock, the color fields, textures, and rhythms actually evoke some tri-dimensionality (something Pollock never did for me before; and Id I’ve seen a few Pollocks in the real canvas flesh.)

    Van Gogh’s art abstracts aspects of the image, but the image remains and communicates itself that much more for the liberties Van took with images. Some semblance of image is necessary for me to feel emotion unless the abstract art is simplified into the power of color and proportion with minimal motion/rhythm. So while I don’t like Pollock, I often enjoy the better ultra minimalist stuff that is often little more than a square or three of carefully chosen color.

    Paul Klee, I feel, straddles the fine line of abstract vs. representative art with an uncanny feel for the sweet spot between the two. Like this:

    Paul Klee

    Final Pollock dig. His art looks to me like the condition he usually was in to paint: thoroughly drunk.

    #66248
    Huskynut
    Participant

    I enjoy interacting almost daily here with art that I’d normally not experience. For whatever reason (cost, distance, timing?) there’s very little classic European art in NZ galleries (let alone my poor attendance therein). And perhaps mellowing with age a bit helps too – I used to be far too quick to judgement, as opposed to being able to “hang out” for a bit with an image and see if it resonated or grew on me.

    Unrelated, I came across this article just now and immediately thought of Dr D. Familiar themes, and well articulated: https://www.zerohedge.com/political/politics-positivism-science-tyranny

    #66249
    straightwalker
    Participant

    @huskynut
    Thanks for the link to the positivism piece. In different terms it describes the breakdown of clear thinking presently occurring. The politicization of science… The author frames the situation clearly and explains the nagging irritation I have when listening to main stream media experts. Usually I just say, I think he/she is full of shit, but that doesn’t leave me with much.

    #66266
    John Day
    Participant

    OK, I found a link to a version of the story of US military (DIA) crashing the Frankfurt Dominion server party the CIA was holding, and taking fatalities. It’s a recording of voice discussions of the story.
    This is a deeper dredge than I do, usually. http://mediaarchives.gsradio.net/rense/special/rense_113020_MH.mp3
    I hear there is another source, but can’t find it, and have asked the correspondent to send me a link.

    #66272
    Susmarie108
    Participant

    It was nice of YOU (so many) – to share personal experiences with art.


    @madamski
    : a beautiful Paul Klee selection. I love the dynamics of the “slices”. The colors are wonderful together. So many shades of turquoise/blue! The “tiles” fit with ease; they produce a harmonic vibe I can BE with. You might call this one HOME. What is the title? And the early piece you posted – that was a Pollock?

    Abstract art like Pollocks splatter-piles produce a reaction (in me) that I might have avoided feeling otherwise. I don’t spend much time in minimally colored random chaos. It’s good for me to go there now and then….

    #66304
    Bill7
    Participant

    Straightwalker said: Why draw? A camera does a better job of preserving light reflected from the subject. Photography is the tool of choice for archiving. Drawing involves sustained attention: the more you look, the more you see. There is action and reaction as the drawing develops; a relationship forms between you and the subject. Feeling influences your hand. The drawing is modeling the subject and how you feel about it. Your light mingles with that of the subject. A drawing discovers and celebrates; it is both egotistical and profoundly humble.

    Finally. Because a drawing stills time, it leads to the present moment, the ultimate reward. <

    Thank you for that bit on drawing, Straightwalker; it’s a great reminder to this guy who can’t draw for sh!t, but needs to anyway, for the reasons you laid out.

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