Dec 132020
 December 13, 2020  Posted by at 10:14 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,

Detail of a fresco from the House of the Tragic Poet, Pompeii, 2nd century BC


Sputnik V Likely Provides COVID Immunity For 2 Years, Pfizer For Months (Sp.)
Russian Cooperation Saves British Vaccine (MoA)
No Need For Vaccine This Year: Australia’s Chief Medical Officer (Yu)
Global Economy To Contract By 5.6% This Year Due To Pandemic – UN (RT)
Millions Of Working-Poor Americans Forced To Turn To Food Banks (ZH)
SCOTUS Had One Last Chance To Keep The American Republic Together (Malic)
Reporters Disclosing Embarrassing Comments From Joe Biden (Turley)
How NBC News Helped the Biden Campaign Ruin an Innocent Man (PJM)
Pascrell Seeks To Block 120 House Republicans From Being Seated (Turley)
GOP Megadonor Celebrates His Profits From “Huge Increases In Rents” (DP)
Sweden Considers E-krona Amid Rapid Growth Of Cash-free Transactions (RT)
UK Ministers Warn Supermarkets To Stockpile Food On No-deal Brexit Fears (R.)
Australian MP Calls On Trump To Pardon Assange Before Leaving WH (RT)





Now coming to an AstraZeneca place near you.

Sputnik V Likely Provides COVID Immunity For 2 Years, Pfizer For Months (Sp.)

Russia’s vaccine showed efficacy of over 95 percent during Phase III trials. According to Kirill Dmitriev, CEO of the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), the organisation that invested in the development of Russia’s inoculation, over 50 countries have already ordered 1.2 billion doses of Sputnik V. The Sputnik V vaccine, developed by Russia’s Gamaleya Research Institute, will likely provide immunity from COVID-19 for two years, while the inoculation developed by Pfizer will shield for 4-5 months, said the institute’s director Alexander Gintsburg. Gintsburg emphasised, however, that this data needs to be checked during experiments.

“The method used in Sputnik V was used in the vaccine against Ebola and experimental data has proved that it provides immunity from the disease for a minimum of two years, but it could be more. I don’t know how long Pfizer’s vaccine will protect from infection”, Gintsbur said. The director of Gamaleya Research Institute also said there is a 96 percent chance that people who have received the Sputnik V jab won’t get sick with COVID-19. Only 4 percent of people who got the vaccine might get sick, Gintsburg said, but stressed that this would be a mild case of the disease that will not affect the lungs. Most likely an individual will have a cough, sniffles, and minor temperature.

Both Sputnik and Pfizer vaccines showed efficacy rates of 95 percent. However, two UK National Health Service workers who received the Pfizer inoculation had allergic reactions to the jab, which prompted UK’s health department to issue a warning that people with a history of allergic reactions should not receive Pfizer’s vaccine. Alexander Gintsburg previously said that the Sputnik V vaccine can be used by people with allergies.

Read more …

Excellent background.

“The possible reason for 62% efficacy of AstraZeneca’s full dose regiment is that immunity to chimpanzee adenoviral vector from the 1st shot makes 2nd shot not effective. #SputnikV addresses this issue by using two different human adenoviral vectors for two shots (92% efficacy)”

Russian Cooperation Saves British Vaccine (MoA)

In late November Debs is dead and I wrote about the ruthless vaccine competition. The cause were the ambiguous results of the non-profit AstraZeneca vaccine trials which led to delighted criticism from those who prefer commercial vaccine suppliers. The good news today is that cooperation between vaccine developers is still possible and can lead to better results. As Debs had opined: “In the real world that means if the AstraZeneca vaccine is more than 60% efficacious (which is better than any flu vaccine – 95% is new big pharma BS IMO) and has no major side effects (one case of MS tells us nothing for the reason I outlined above), then it will be that or nothing for a sizeable slab of the world’s population. If everyone falls for big pharma’s transparent attempt to stop this possible vaccine in its tracks, prior to testing completion, then that will mean no vaccine for billions of our fellow humans, so rather than joining in the big pharma sabotage, it makes better sense to consider that vaccine more objectively than de Noli, that Harvard minion of corporations seems to do.”

I agreed with that and discussed the most likely reason why the AstraZeneca vaccine did not create a higher efficacy: “The AstraZeneca vaccine uses an adenovirus as ‘vector’ to deliver a DNA sequence that human cells then use to create one specific (but harmless) SARS-CoV-2 protein. The immune system will then learn to attack that protein. Afterwards it should be able to protect against SARS-CoV-2 infections. … In order to safeguard against cases where an already existing immunity to human adenoviruses may impede inoculation AstraZeneca is using a chimpanzee-originated version of an adenovirus as a vector. The Russian Sputnik V vaccine, hyped by Prof. de Noli on RT, uses two doses with different human adenoviruses (Ad-26, Ad-5) as vectors to increase the chance of inoculation.

Other vaccine developers, CanSino Biologics and Johnson & Johnson, are also using adenovirus vectors. Sinopharm’s vaccine uses an inactivated SARS-CoV-2 virus. AstraZeneca found by chance that its vaccine works best when the first dose is smaller than the second one. Vector immunity can explain why this is the case. A first high dose will create some immunity against the SARS-CoV-2 virus but also some immunity against the vector virus, the chimpanzee-originated adenovirus. When a first high dose has trained the immune system to fight the vector virus the second ‘booster’ vaccine dose using the same vector will become inefficient. A lower first dose can make sure that the second higher dose is not prematurely defeated by vector immunity but can still do its work.

Unbeknownst to me the Russian developers of the Sputnik V vaccine had come to the same conclusion: Sputnik V @sputnikvaccine – 13:10 UTC · Nov 23, 2020 “The possible reason for 62% efficacy of AstraZeneca’s full dose regiment is that immunity to chimpanzee adenoviral vector from the 1st shot makes 2nd shot not effective. #SputnikV addresses this issue by using two different human adenoviral vectors for two shots (92% efficacy). They had offered AstraZeneca to cooperate with them: Sputnik V @sputnikvaccine – 2:41 PM · Nov 23, 2020 “Sputnik V is happy to share one of its two human adenoviral vectors with @AstraZeneca to increase the efficacy of AstraZeneca vaccine. Using two different vectors for two vaccine shots will result in higher efficacy than using the same vector for two shots.” Today the Sputnik V website announced that AstraZeneca has accepted the proposal. Trials will start immediately.

Read more …

How many Australians are still stuck abroad after 11 months?

No Need For Vaccine This Year: Australia’s Chief Medical Officer (Yu)

Acting Chief Medical Officer Paul Kelly says Australia’s success against coronavirus means, unlike other countries, we can wait for full vaccine approvals. Australia’s top doctor says news of the U.S. drug regulator granting emergency use of the Pfizer vaccine – like the UK and Canada have also recently done – is not necessary in Australia. “We don’t need any vaccine this year,” Kelly told reporters in Canberra on Saturday. “Other countries are in far different state than us and they should be prioritised.” Australia will wait for the Therapeutic Goods Administration—the national drug regulator—to run through its own approvals of the Pfizer vaccine with the expectation it will be distributed in early 2021.

He highlighted the nation’s success at controlling virus transmission. “Today is eighth day in a row we’ve not had any community transmission,” Kelly said. “That’s the first time we’ve been able to say that since February.” This is compared with the fact that Friday was the most deadly day of the virus yet, with more than 13,000 deaths and skyrocketing infections, Kelly said. The emphasis right now is on having an impenetrable hotel quarantine system. “Whilst we’re concentrated on bringing Australians home… we have to make sure absolutely that our hotel quarantine system is the very best it can be,” Kelly said.

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Feels a bit much like guesswork.

Global Economy To Contract By 5.6% This Year Due To Pandemic – UN (RT)

The volume of global trade is set face the sharpest decline since the end of the global financial crisis, falling as much as 5.6 percent this year, the UN Conference for Trade and Development (UNCTAD) predicts. The figure, announced by the agency earlier this week, is more optimistic than its previous forecast, which expected global trade to contract by nine percent year-on-year. The previous largest decline was seen in 2009, when global merchandise trade took a 22-percent nosedive. However, the UNCTAD downgraded its forecast for the service sector, which was hit hard by a steep decline in travel, transport and tourism activity during the pandemic.

The troubled sector is on path to fall by a staggering 15.4 percent to levels last seen in the 1990s, according to nowcasts – data-led projections for the immediate future – from UNCTAD’s 2020 Handbook of Statistics. Even following the previous crisis, services trade was down by less than 10 percent. The pandemic has also transformed business as usual in 2020, the UN agency said, adding that it had to adjust statistics methods to provide up-to-date figures on the economic fallout. “Unlike previous years however, the models that nowcast international trade and GDP had to grapple with some of the most unusual circumstances in living memory,” said UNCTAD’s chief statistician, Steve MacFeely.

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“Feeding America handed out 4.2 billion meals from March through October, the most ever.”

Millions Of Working-Poor Americans Forced To Turn To Food Banks (ZH)

For the first time, millions of Americans waited in food bank lines this year, unlike anything seen since the Great Depression of the 1930s. According to AP, as the pandemic rages on, with more than 20 million still claiming unemployment benefits, food banks are dishing out more meals than ever. The one place millions of Americans found themselves this year, as readers may recall, really starting in mid-March, have been food bank lines. We highlighted this phenomenon sweeping across the country as the pandemic wrecked the working poor as they grappled with food insecurity. Among some of the most memorable sights this year, reminiscent of the Depression-era, were mile-long food bank lines.

Huge traffic jams captured by civilian drones documented large lines in San Antonio, Texas to Toledo, Ohio to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to Orlando, Florida, where thousands of vehicles carrying hungry people waited for care packages. Feeding America, a nationwide network of more than 200 food banks, was overwhelmed with demand as 20% of the organization’s food banks were at severe risk of running out of food earlier this year Demand at food banks has been so high, that Feeding America handed out 4.2 billion meals from March through October, the most ever. The organization reported a 60% average increase in food bank users during the pandemic – and at least 30% are first-timers. Data from Feeding America showed 181 food banks in its network distributed nearly 57% more food in the third quarter than the same period in 2019.

Estimates from the food bank suggest 1 in 6 Americans, from 35 million in 2019 to more than 50 million by the end of this year, will have food insecurity problems. The problem is worse for children – nearly 1 in 4 will go hungry as the pandemic deeply scarred the economy. Shockingly, Feeding America found that 1 in 5 residents in Mississippi, Arkansas, Alabama, and Louisiana could not put food on the table.

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“The Silicon Valley tech giants, who in the run-up to the election censored and suppressed the story about Joe Biden’s family business deals overseas – that later turned out to be accurate – and slapped “disputed” warnings on Trump’s claims of electoral fraud the way they never did on ‘Russiagate,’ are now openly censoring any notion that 2020 wasn’t perfectly legal. You’re now forbidden to say that. Soon you won’t be allowed to think it.”

SCOTUS Had One Last Chance To Keep The American Republic Together (Malic)

By washing its hands of responsibility to hear the Texas challenge to the 2020 presidential election, the nine Justices of the US Supreme Court may have sealed the country’s fate and made a kinetic civil war much more likely. On Friday, the highest court in the land decided that Texas “lacked standing” to challenge the conduct of elections in Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin under Article 3 of the US Constitution. Yet the article in question explicitly states that the SCOTUS will be the original jurisdiction in “Controversies between two or more States; – between a State and Citizens of another State; – between Citizens of different States,” among other things. Contrary to media reports, Texas did not seek to “overturn” the election of Democrat Joe Biden.

The motion filed by Attorney General Ken Paxton very explicitly called for the court to order the state legislatures thereof to seat the electors, as is their constitutional prerogative. Yes, those legislatures are majority Republican, but nothing guaranteed they would actually back President Donald Trump. After all, Georgia has a Republican governor and secretary of state, and both declared the election clean as a whistle, brushing off all evidence of alleged irregularities. The very same media that brayed for the past four years about how the 2016 election was somehow tampered with by Russia – never offering any evidence for that – have declared the 2020 one pure as driven snow, the most secure in history, perfect in every way.

In what was surely a massive coincidence, it even happened to exactly mirror the 2016 result, with Biden getting 306 electoral college votes to Trump’s 232. The Silicon Valley tech giants, who in the run-up to the election censored and suppressed the story about Joe Biden’s family business deals overseas – that later turned out to be accurate – and slapped “disputed” warnings on Trump’s claims of electoral fraud the way they never did on ‘Russiagate,’ are now openly censoring any notion that 2020 wasn’t perfectly legal. You’re now forbidden to say that. Soon you won’t be allowed to think it. In America, the country that invented the constitutional amendment guaranteeing the freedom of speech and thought!

Democrats and their allies in the media and Silicon Valley were eager to declare the Texas motion “seditious.” One influential House Democrat said any Republican backing the lawsuit was “engaging in rebellion against the United States” and should be stripped of their office under the 14th Amendment, originally written to justify disenfranchising the Confederates after 1865. The irony here is that the Supreme Court could have actually prevented another civil war had it chosen to hear the Texas lawsuit, and then ruled against it on non-pretextual grounds. That, at least, would have sent the message to Trump supporters that the System works, and that they should continue to place their trust in it. There would always be the possibility of a rematch in the 2022 midterms or 2024.

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“I am not sure when it became acceptable for politicians to expressly refuse to state their intentions and policies until after they are elected.”

Reporters Disclosing Embarrassing Comments From Joe Biden (Turley)

We have been discussing the open bias shown by the media in the last four years. It is not clear if we can regain the ground lost for journalism as even journalism professors call for the rejection of objectivity in favor of advocacy. This has included shielding Joe Biden from any challenging questions during the recent election. That includes the news blackout on reporting on the Hunter Biden scandal, the subject of my column today in the Hill. CNN’s April Ryan personifies this trend. Even as the media is facing widespread criticism for burying the Hunter Biden story (and is now doing the same with the Swalwell scandal), Ryan lashed out at confidential sources responsible for leaking a recording of Joe Biden making embarrassing comments about the “defund the police” movement.

Ryan is demanding to know who is responsible for allowing the embarrassing comments to be made public despite her past enthusiastic discussion of such leaks against President Donald Trump. President-elect Biden lashed out at the “defund the police” movement this week in a meeting with civil rights leaders, stating “That’s how they beat the living hell out of us across the country, saying that we’re talking about defunding the police. We’re not.” The recording was obtained by The Intercept. What I felt was most notable was that Biden said that he would not share his plans for reforming the police until after the Georgia runoff to avoid any backlash from voters. While NBC paraphrased the quote as Biden warning “about getting ‘too far ahead of ourselves’ with critical Senate runoff elections in Georgia on Jan. 5,” it was more direct and disturbing than that.

Biden stated: “Just think to yourself and give me advice whether we should do that before Jan. 5th, because that’s how they beat the living hell out of us across the country, saying that we’re talking about defunding the police.” It was precisely what Biden did with regard to packing the Supreme Court. He expressly refused to tell voters whether he would support such a plan because it might cost him votes. The key issue in the Georgia runoff is whether, once in control of the Senate, the Democrats would move forward on what are viewed as radical proposals, including sweeping police reforms. Biden’s answer again is not to tell the voters what they have planned. As I mentioned yesterday, I am not sure when it became acceptable for politicians to expressly refuse to state their intentions and policies until after they are elected.

Biden has now twice said that he does not want voters to know in case it might cost votes. There are a host of issues raised by Biden’s remarks, but Ryan lashed out at the use of such tapes, which are standard in journalism; “I asked an incoming White House source was the meeting contentious with civil rights leader and @JoeBiden and the answer was ‘no’. A rights leader at the meeting says @JoeBiden was passionate,” Ryan tweeted. “The question is who taped this meeting and why? What is the agenda?”

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We’re not allowed to find out what went on with Balding and his story.

How NBC News Helped the Biden Campaign Ruin an Innocent Man (PJM)

Hunter Biden was the October Surprise that wasn’t. A report so explosive, so potentially damaging, so dangerous for national security that it should have destroyed Joe Biden’s bid for the White House. In any other election, fleets of investigative reporters would have been unleashed to verify the claims in the report. Instead, in the ultimate expression of Trump Derangement Syndrome, a major media company set out to personally destroy the man who they thought put the report together and thereby discredit the report to the point that the entire media complex in America took turns ridiculing the story instead of investigating it. The results could have dire implications for national security. But hey, at least they got rid of the Bad Orange Man.

The week before Election Day, RedState published a series of articles about Joe Biden and Hunter Biden, based on a 64-page report from researchers who combed public records to reveal how compromised the Biden family is to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). You can read Part 1 here. The four-part series lays out deeply disturbing connections between Hunter Biden, Joe Biden, John Kerry, and the CCP. The pro-democracy news outlet Apple Daily, based in Hong Kong, used an earlier 40-page version of the report and was the first to report on its findings. In response, NBC News launched a coordinated attack on one of the publishers of the report, Christopher Balding. This attack had all the appearances of being coordinated with the Biden campaign and it had the effect of benefiting the CCP.

The report goes into intimate detail about the deep connections between the Biden family and the CCP. In fact, Hunter Biden’s company BHR is listed as a subsidiary of the Bank of China, owned by the CCP. Balding, who taught English for several years in China before moving to Vietnam to teach there for a couple of years, appeared on a Facebook Live event for the Oregon Republican Party (ORP) on October 30 to talk about his report. In that event, he said, “Hunter Biden started going to China, the first trips that we picked up were shortly before Biden became vice president in 2008, and there was a steady stream of visits to Beijing over time. I would say it was probably almost once a year to China during that time. He was meeting with individuals and institutions that would ultimately become the investors in the BHR Fund.”

“The first thing to note,” Balding said, “is this appears to significantly predate 2013 going back to probably 2008, that’s when you really see the groundwork being laid for this. I think another thing that is very important to note is that all of the individual institutions that are surrounding everything’s going on here … are very closely linked to the state, whether it is with a quasi-state type of organizations, whether it is state-owned banks, whether it is part of the actual government, everyone that you’re seeing here is very closely linked to the state. A lot of people that you’re seeing are also very closely tied to Chinese organizations that are known by the U.S. government and other governments to be intelligence, their cover institutions for Intel, and until an influence operation, and what I mean by that is China has a lot of very innocuous-sounding institutional or organizational names, you know, one of the ones that pops to mind is the Chinese Council for the Promotion of International Trade.

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“Such challenges and concerns are brought to the courts where we can have disputes resolved without violence in a constitutional system.”

Pascrell Seeks To Block 120 House Republicans From Being Seated (Turley)

It appears that Rep. Bill Pascrell (D., NJ) has a serious problem with Republicans going to court. We recently discussed Pascrell’s absurd effort to disbar roughly two dozen Republican lawyers for challenging the results of the 2020 election. Now Pascrell is declaring that 120 House Republicans signing a “Friend of the Court brief” (or amicus brief) is tantamount to supporting a rebellion against the United States and that they should be blocked from taking their seats in Congress. I previously denounced Pascrell for his “dangerous form of demagoguery.” This latest call shows the demagoguery has reached a level of utter delusion.

From the outset of the Texas lawsuit, I stated that it was virtually guaranteed to fail on standing. It did fail last night. However, courts are where we take cases alleging such injuries. Tens of millions of American believe that the election was not fair, including many Democratic voters. Roughly 70 percent of Republican voters believe the election was stolen. Such challenges and concerns are brought to the courts where we can have disputes resolved without violence in a constitutional system. Rather than welcome such review, Democrats have launched a scorched earth campaign, including an abusive campaign of harassment and abuse by the Lincoln Project. These efforts notably began shortly after Biden was declared the presumptive winner of the election and before any challenges were actually ruled upon by the courts.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi has also fueled such reckless rhetoric, declaring that the Republicans are “subverting the Constitution by their reckless and fruitless assault on our democracy which threatens to seriously erode public trust in our most sacred democratic institutions, and to set back our progress on the urgent challenges ahead.” Pascrell’s move against his colleagues mirrors language in the response of Pennsylvania’s Attorney General Josh Shapiro calling the Texas lawsuit “seditious.” Seeking judicial review is the antithesis of sedition or rebellion. It is working within our constitutional system for a legal opinion on the merits of a challenge. These litigants have complied with court orders, as has President Trump.

On Twitter, Pascrell declared: “Stated simply, the men and women who would act to tear the United States Government apart cannot serve as Members of the Congress. These lawsuits seeking to obliterate public confidence in our democratic system by invalidating the clear results of the 2020 presidential election undoubtedly attack the text and the spirit of the Constitution, which each Member swears to support and defend.”

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GOP Megadonor Celebrates His Profits From “Huge Increases In Rents” (DP)

The world’s largest private equity firm has bankrolled campaigns against rent control and been accused by the United Nations of fueling a global housing crisis. Now, as millions are threatened with eviction during the pandemic, Blackstone’s top executive is openly bragging that the firm is making huge profits off of rent increases. At the Goldman Sachs’ Financial Services Conference on December 9, Blackstone’s billionaire CEO Stephen Schwartzman boasted that after the 2008 financial crisis, his firm was able to cash in on the mortgage crisis. At the time, the company was able to buy up foreclosed homes and convert them into rental properties subsequently plagued by accusations of dilapidation and excessive fees — all while it received a big financial boost from the government. Schwartzman, a top Republican donor and close ally of President Trump, indicated his firm is positioning itself for a similar jackpot.

“You always have winners and losers — Blackstone was a huge winner coming out of the global financial crisis and I think something similar is going to happen,” he said. Noting that about half of his private equity firm’s revenues are now from real estate, Schwarzman added: “We’re the largest owner of real estate in the private world. And that asset class has boomed with huge increases in rents, almost no occupancies, [and] rent collections from almost everyone.” Blackstone recently made billions selling off its single-family residential rental business — but in the last year, the company has been buying new stakes in residentialrental properties. In 2018 and 2020, it gave millions to political groups that successfully fought to defeat rent control ballot initiatives in California, where Blackstone has significant real estate investments.

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Is there any paper money left in Sweden?

Sweden Considers E-krona Amid Rapid Growth Of Cash-free Transactions (RT)

Swedish authorities have announced plans for a step-by-step replacement of the traditional krona with a digital equivalent, signaling a potential shift away from paper money in one of the world’s most cashless societies. A detailed review of the possibility was launched earlier this week, and is expected to be completed by the end of November 2022, according to the country’s financial markets minister, Per Bolund. It followed the launch of a pilot Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) earlier this year. The ministry reportedly set up a committee to oversee the review headed by Anna Kinberg Batra, a former chairwoman of the central bank’s finance committee. Sweden is among the world’s pioneers when it comes to integrating a digital currency into a national financial system.

Earlier this year, the Riksbank, the country’s central bank, launched a pilot project to introduce an electronic krona based on the same blockchain technology that underpins digital currencies like bitcoin. The government will officially launch e-krona as soon as the review is completed. “Depending on how a digital currency is designed and which technologies are used, it can have large consequences for the entire financial system,” Bolund told Bloomberg, stressing that “it’s crucial that the digitalized payments market functions safely, and that it’s available to everybody.” The use of paper money in Sweden has significantly declined in recent years, with that trend strongly reinforced during the peak of the coronavirus pandemic. The national mobile payment system, Swish, has bolstered the move since it was introduced in 2012 by Sweden’s six largest banks.

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The Brexit stories will increasingly come in fast and furious for the rest of the year.

UK Ministers Warn Supermarkets To Stockpile Food On No-deal Brexit Fears (R.)

British ministers have warned supermarkets to stockpile food amid possibilities of a no-deal Brexit, with shortages feared as talks with the European Union remain deadlocked, The Sunday Times newspaper reported. UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson is set to take control of planning if Britain opts for no deal and will chair an exit operations committee to prepare the response, the newspaper reported. Ministers have told suppliers of medicines, medical devices and vaccines to stockpile six weeks’ worth at secure locations in the United Kingdom, the report added.

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How about his own government?

Australian MP Calls On Trump To Pardon Assange Before Leaving WH (RT)

Australian MP George Christensen called on Donald Trump to pardon WikiLeaks founder and fellow Australian citizen Julian Assange while he still can, as it seems to be the US president’s last month in the Oval Office. Christensen – a member of the Liberal National Party who represents Dawson, Queensland – launched a petition this week encouraging the president to pardon the journalist, who faces up to 175 years in prison for publishing classified material. Christensen also appeared on Sky News Australia to make his case. He told the network that Assange “has been a target of the Democrats,” noting that his persecution started under the administration of former president Barack Obama.

“I mean Hillary Clinton hates his guts, obviously, for exposing who the real Hillary was, and you’ve had a war on Assange by the Democrats and the deep state,” he claimed, pointing out that projected president-elect Joe Biden has called Assange a criminal and a “hi-tech terrorist.” The MP argued that a pardon is “one way that Donald Trump can stand up for free speech,” and against the Democratic establishment, and would also allow him to “poke the deep state in the eye.” At the center of the United States’ “great document of democracy that is the United States Constitution” is free speech and freedom of the press, Christensen declared, before concluding, “So I’m hoping that he will pardon Julian Assange. It’s the right thing to do.”

During his Sky News appearance, Christensen also sided with Trump’s allegations of 2020 election voter fraud, claiming that the Democrats have “successfully stolen an election from Donald Trump.” Also on Saturday, Stella Morris, Assange’s partner and the mother of his children, told the Australian government in her own Sky News Australia interview to “pick up the phone and speak to its closest allies” in order to get Assange freed.

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Home Forums Debt Rattle December 13 2020

Viewing 34 posts - 1 through 34 (of 34 total)
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    Detail of a fresco from the House of the Tragic Poet, Pompeii, 2nd century BC   • Sputnik V Likely Provides COVID Immunity For 2 Years, Pfizer Fo
    [See the full post at: Debt Rattle December 13 2020]


    Mr House asked: Where did c-19 come from again? Have we figured that out yet?

    Imho this qu. is vital.

    One answer. (I’m not a med. doc or a virologist – and might list many questions and some objections)

    Dr Luc Montagnier, co-winner of a Nobel prize for discovering the HIV virus, says that the Sars-cov2 virus is a human creation. Montagnier is derided as a nut-case in F. MSM, since a long time.

    He says it was manufactured in a lab as a part of an effort to create a vaccine for HIV, the virus somehow escaped from the level 4 lab in Wuhan – they were working on bat-corona-viruses.

    sidebar: In Spring 2018 alarms about safety at the Wuhan lab were signaled by US authorities. The US collaborated with that Lab, visited it.

    link > Daily Mail, yeah, — a short summary w-out paywall

    link > Mint, gives a brief description of an interview of Montagnier. Eng

    the interview – intro text, audio, in F

    And now in Australia a Covid vaccine trial is stopped because of false HIV positive tests.


    That can’t be accidental, no way.

    Dr. D

    “an electronic krona based on the same blockchain technology that underpins digital currencies like bitcoin.”

    Doubt it. XRP is a “crypto” that isn’t a crypto at all. It’s a private ledger, like an Excel spreadsheet run from Citibank’s basement. They can add, remove, edit, anything they want, you won’t know. Just like now, with the Fed/Swift system. That’s the OPPOSITE of crypto, and not reading Sweden since I don’t live there, that’s what the Fed coins and others are reputed to be. Of course.

    UK Ministers Warn Supermarkets To Stockpile Food On No-deal Brexit Fears (R.)”

    Remember when UK would perish from even THINKING about leaving? The Pound would collapse? Business would end? FTSE would drop 90%. Yeah, more threats. EU will NEVER EVER let Britain leave. They will nuke them first, except they don’t have a military, they have a bunch of limp-wristed gum-flappers. But here you go: how many years is it now since the referendum? How many both open and underhanded attempts to stop democracy? And still at it, nobody taking it seriously and moving wheels?

    Speaking of food: news back in Yankee-land. Food supply and distribution here is shocked and terrible, and worse, no news reporting on it at all, which means it’s real. Weirdest events, some totally random: scarcely-usable toilet paper, only one brand. …But too much of it. Whole peanut butter shelf wiped out, except one brand in one weird size. No bread in one major store, every offered variety of 30 breads in the store next door. Shelves almost always empty down whole rows: curtains maybe, something random. Yet endless Christmas decorations, something also from China and equally unnecessary. Oil, for example, car supplies are fully available. Car parts randomly unavailable.

    And no price rises anywhere to ration supplies.

    So basically we are Argentina, or any Socialist countries: you can get all the bacon you want for $1, but there isn’t any. We provide everything at a reasonable cost, but the shelves are empty. You can get anything you like here, just like any 1st world nation, but here in the 3rd world, it will appear only once in surplus for one week and if you want any you’ll have to stockpile it at home and trade with your neighbors.

    So when you set up a fully-Soviet, centrally-planned, rapacious, monopolistic, competition-free, oligarchic system, you get Soviet, starvation, hardship, impoverished, polarized, totally unworking, nation-crippling results. Congratulations: you have arrived where you were heading.

    Also not in the news, (mostly) because they just report “cases” that aren’t cases and mean nothing with a test 90% false positive, the hospitalization rates ARE going up into danger territory, and that IS real. Now I wouldn’t trust a second what they claim that is, and YES Flu goes up and even overflows into parking garages every year now, (unlike, say the ’50s when we were “Capitalist” health care) but I’d be shocked if it weren’t COVID somehow at root. Here’s the problem: One, they disrupt all their wards and procedures by having “clean” and “dirty” areas. That makes them less efficient in their use of space and resources. Two, they may have had an attack of a year’s delayed care, that is, all those non-cancer-screenings came due. Three, still hearing both Heart Disease and Influenza have been cured by Covid and no longer kill anyone, so try to clean up the numbers/lies here as to what’s ACTUALLY happening. Four, they did f* -all, literally nothing in the whole year they were screaming about a “Second wave” that you could guess would happen the minute Vitamin D drops. That is, they have NO MASKS (N95 of course), no people, no wards, no planning, no therapies, nothing.

    Hey, you’re the smart guys, you have white coats and claim to have graduated from somewhere, you couldn’t figure out how to HIRE anyone in the world’s biggest recession and unemployment cycle? No? Can’t figure it out? Governor suddenly can’t figure out how to borrow money to “stimulate” high wages in healthcare? In a police state Napoleon would be green with envy for, can’t figure out how to activate the State National Guard? Can’t figure out how to re-open all those perfectly-intact abandoned hospitals they been closing for 20 years? N O P E .

    …And you wonder why I have no respect for them at all, and if they told me my temperature was 98f I’d grab the thermometer and look for myself. Lying, cheating, thieving, *ss-covering, weasel-minded, double-talking, mass-murdering, or at least mass-neglecting, fiends. Who think after this I should or would listen to or credit a thing they say after failing the whole state and making, expecting, demanding 6-and-7 administrative figures for the privilege of failing every person, who slowly dies.

    …Oh and I’m ALSO mad about their murdering everybody ELSE with the economic shutdown. Double-the-murder, double-the-fun. As Texas/CA shows, didn’t matter, just like the most illiterate, uneducated boobs like me said a year ago. So IF we had an ECONOMY, we MIGHT be able to come up with the goods, the money, the masks, to provide all this additional health care we need. Now it would be a miracle if we could.

    N O P E . We provide neither, and now slowly the shelves are empty, as they soften us up into total ruin and death with slow, siege warfare on mankind itself. War on POOR men. It’s probably $10T transferred to the richest already, and they’re buying bonds ALONE, one mechanism, NOT including shutting businesses, NOT including stimulus checks, NOT including deficits, JUST central bank private bond purchases, of $2 BILLION dollars. A DAY.

    Gee, why dat Dow go up? Why dem rich get richer? Such a mystery.

    Applause all ‘round. Socialism doing what Socialism does. Murder, inequity, oppression, and despair. All middle class wiped out. Maximum percentage of lives ruined. No gains made. They aren’t going to stop until you stand up and stop them.

    Mr. House

    As far as i’m concerned C-19 is a crime, and we’re watching a cover up.

    Mr. House

    Just like the GFC, it was a crime and we watched the cover up.

    Mr. House

    Iraq war, 9/11, crimes and we watched the cover ups. And wouldn’t you know, it was the exact same group of people running the show. Perhaps they have so little respect for us they just think they can do this forever and we’ll never call their bluff.

    Mr. House

    Raul, what do you think the average age of your readers is? The thought crossed my mind while reading comments on NC the other day. I would imagine the average age of someone reading and commenting at NC is in their 60’s. Old hippies who went yuppie and now hope they can redeem themselves by screaming at other people about not wearing masks.


    In addition to what Dr. D said,
    I’ve always hear the seniors commenting on the younger generation of not being as “good, capable, devoted, tough”, etc as when “we” were young.
    Our societies has multiple complex systems of rules, regulations, standard practice and procedures to follow so that everything will keep functioning.
    However, I am seeing, more and more, that the gears are gumming up and things are not functioning as they were designed to function.
    What I’m seeing, that our systems are breaking down, has nothing to do with “ism”.
    Its because the leaders, supervisors, foreman, enablers, are not doing their jobs.
    Too many of them are not shouldering their responsibilites, don’t want to be liable, and work smart not hard, by delegating all their work to someone else.

    Mr. House

    “Too many of them are not shouldering their responsibilites, don’t want to be liable, and work smart not hard, by delegating all their work to someone else.”


    Mr. House

    When i talk to people my parents age 65 or so, they don’t care how the stock market gets to its valuations, as long as they get to collect on it. Greed and Fear, seem to work best when you want people to give up things they “believe” in.

    Mr. House

    “Imho this qu. is vital.”

    And it never will get answered, because even if it wasn’t released intentionally and only “escaped” from a lab, the fingers would still be pointed at them. People would demand all research like that be stopped, and we can’t have that now can we. And my oh my the lawsuits, can you imagine the class action lawsuit that would occur. They never accept blame nor do they accept alternatives to their way of doing things, its like we’re ruled by 1000 hillary clintons.

    Doc Robinson

    “How many Australians are still stuck abroad after 11 months?”

    More than 30,000 are reportedly waiting to return to Australia.

    In January, about 2.3 million people came to Australia. By September, the figure was 16,720…

    A similar collapse in travel has occurred across Asia, where restrictions are tougher than in the United States and Europe, though without Australia’s tight quarantine caps. Visitors to Japan fell to 13,700 in September from 2.7 million in January; to 64,000 from 1.3 million in South Korea over the same period; and to 13,800 from 2 million in Vietnam…

    It is the quarantine system that has allowed us to go back to a semi-normal state… When they arrive, travelers are escorted under police or military guard to sealed hotels, where they are not allowed to leave their rooms…

    The last coronavirus case diagnosed in the community in Australia was a cleaner, on Dec. 3, who works in a hotel where travelers from overseas are locked in their rooms. Among those in quarantine, 62 cases were identified over the past week — cases that policymakers say illustrate the danger of repatriating more citizens and residents.

    Mr. House

    Why do these people never quit? They believe in something so much, sexual harassment is bad (i agree) but they never quit the job where this is happening? Only years later do they ever mention it. A combination of greed and fear perhaps?

    PS Gov meatball should be on trial for sending infected into nursing homes to infect more older people and goose his fatalities numbers.


    I’m really curious about the long lines reported at food banks throughout the US. I have had an income well below the federal poverty line for eight years (my ex successfully hid his income from the commissioner overseeing child support hearings…it’s a long story.) I’ve gotten food from a foodbank regularly (about once per month) and have been on food stamps for 8 years. I’m familiar with the lines of the local foodbank — rarely, you can walk right in, register, get food and be out in 15 minutes, but usually it takes a little over an hour and I have to plan accordingly. During the pandemic, I’ve had many more experiences of the former (15 minutes or so) and I think the absolutely longest I’ve waited from first arrival to leaving was 30 minutes. From my end, it is difficult to ascertain the exact reason why — although I’m sure the food bank knows how many people it is serving, the information is not readily available. The volunteers have been replaced with National Guard, and we don’t get to go around and select our food during the pandemic, it is delivered to the car pre-selected. However, I suspect that either the local food bank traffic has been reduced somewhat, or possibly stayed about the same or slightly increased, and the lower wait times are due to increased efficiency because choosing food has been taken out of the picture.

    This is a hyper-local observation, so I’m not sure how it relates to the larger picture — perhaps many of the usual recipients were older folks who have been scared to go out? Maybe they are getting their food through some other manner now, some sort of delivery? Perhaps, because I live in Arizona where lockdowns have always been pretty light-handed, and right now the only Covid rule in affect that affects most everyone are the local mask mandates for stores, and some school districts that are doing online only learning, the economic downturn is less steep here? Perhaps the numbers seeking food at the local food bank will increase markedly if unemployment runs out at the end of December?

    Not sure what it means, but I find it curious.


    Yeah, Mr. House, I’m thinking we’re not far off from the formation of Covid-19 truth commissions. Virologists and doctors for COVID 19 truth dot com. Grab the domain while you can.


    Hang your head is shame for letting USA gov. prevent trade
    Iran Sends Ship to Load Venezuela Oil in Defiance of Sanctions
    Lucia Kassai and Fabiola Zerpa

    Tehran has been supplying gasoline, food for Venezuela while Caracas has supplied gold as payment for the assistanceRelated: Biggest Iranian Flotilla Yet En Route to Venezuela With Fuel


    ‘Why this campaign of terror? Never outside war time have populations been subjected to such outrageous assault and battery by government propaganda machines’:

    Why this campaign of terror?

    Outstanding piece, I think.


    @ Dr D – something to think about
    “So when you set up a fully-Soviet, centrally-planned, rapacious, monopolistic, competition-free, oligarchic system, you get Soviet, starvation, hardship, impoverished, polarized, totally unworking, nation-crippling results. Congratulations: you have arrived where you were heading.”

    Lenin told the USSR before his death that although their goal was “socialism,” what they had achieved a few years after the Russian Revolution was “state capitalism.” State capitalism is where the (major) business owners have been replaced by “the state” or a political party (i.e. the former USSR’s Communist Party or CCP.) Once Stalin ascended to power, he told the people of the USSR that they had achieved “socialism” — the USSR economy had not changed significantly in the interim years — this was doublespeak on the part of Stalin.

    Capitalism is very unstable — there are economic downturns every 4-7 years on average. Another unstable feature of capitalism is how it vacillates constantly between being a competitive playing field of small and/or innovative players and a non-competitive field of monopolist or oligopolist players. Markets tend to distribute goods and services efficiently when both the buyers and the sellers are all on more-or-less equal footing — i.e. buyers all have adequate means to purchase what they need and to supply many of their wants, and sellers do not have so many resources that they can manipulate the buyers (i.e. advertising campaigns that misrepresent their products/services, monopolies that restrict competition, buying up all the patents of products that could potentially be better than their own, etc.) However, over time capitalism tends to naturally accrue profit and resources into the hands of the few. (Piketty proved this a few years ago.) Minor wealth/income inequality is not a problem in an economic system nor in a society, but when wealth/income inequality becomes very large, markets become inefficient at distributing goods and services — the price of scarce items gets bid up so that many who need/want them are unable to get them, and simply go without. While this is not critical for some items — such as art pieces of famous masters — it is socially catastrophic for others — such as when the epipen price is so high that people who are highly allergic and ought to carry one around do not have the financial resources to do so. Or when the wealthy are buying up all the milk to give their cats, and impoverished families do not have the means to buy milk for their children.

    The reason why governments that fully support capitalism “interfere” with the market is because without some sort of regulation it became apparent during the Great Depression that there was a real probability that the impoverished folks might rise up and overthrow the entire system. Instead, in the US, FDR gave us The New Deal — which was a way to appease the masses who were in economic pain — and a way to save capitalism from being upended in revolution, and maintain the economic power of those who had that power in the existing system. In Germany during the same time period, economic pain led to the rise of Hitler.

    In my view, without government intervention, unregulated private capitalism will give us, “… starvation, hardship, impoverished, polarized, totally unworking, nation-crippling results….” Although the USSR failed, the People’s Republic of China has not. In fact, this system is currently ascending in world power. Do I lionize China? Certainly not — but to ignore its economic success is to put one’s head in the sand.

    What is really needed is a system that is free of monopoly, free of oligopoly, free of top-down control, includes enough competition and wealth/income inequality to give people incentives and goals, as well as enough shared prosperity that we meet in marketplaces more or less as equals. Scarce items need to be allocated in some fashion to those who need them most, not merely to those who have access to the most wealth. We need a system that prioritizes the needs of local economies that serve local folks — because it is when we meet face-to-face that we have compassion for one another and our better natures tend to be activated. We need a system that doesn’t throw local economies under the bus to serve some far away goal or need.

    Often, those who praise capitalism like to place it in the context of a small town, where transactions are face to face, where business owners care about the livelihood and well-being of their employees and customers. (I understand that desire — I run a small business, I have had an employee at times — I paid her when I couldn’t pay myself. I work directly with my clients.) Perhaps what needs to be praised is that local, face-to-face economy that prioritizes human relationship along with economic relationship. Although capitalism may have been birthed in this small-town setting, it has never stayed there. Due to capitalism (granted, there are other social drivers as well,) we have mega-cities, mega-corporations, and mega-nationstates. The face-to-face transactions that capitalism started with are in today’s economy often either non-existent, or the faces on the “sellers end” are low-end employees who have little to no power given to them to actually act on any compassion they may have for the buyer. This is by design — having compassion for buyers does not lead to the greatest level of profit being extracted from the transaction for the seller’s organization.

    Rather than fight over whether the economic titans in capitalism should be private (such as has been the case in most cases in the Western-dominated world) or dominated by a political party (i.e. The Communist Party in the former USSR or current CCP,) I’d rather participate in discussion of what sort of system could achieve better results than capitalism. We have some passing familiarity with alternative economic systems — feudalism, slavery, tribal, etc. Can we take what we’ve learned from capitalism — take its best parts — and incorporate it with new ideas so that our economy does a better job serving ALL people involved and encourages wise stewardship of the Earth and its resources?

    Dr. D

    Living in America, you can’t take responsibility living in a world of cheats and toddlers because the first man who takes the slightest responsibility will be blamed for everything that happens. Anything in the office, on the floor, the block, any problems in the whole city will be blamed on this poor, naive, trusting soul who had the good intent of taking his logical and appropriate responsibility. The other 200k people living in the city, abdicating all responsibility, shirking every duty known to man or adult, doing nothing, will sleep like a babe every night having blamed and walked away. Hopefully he would be jailed then executed for his failure to, you know, stop COVID nationwide despite being the Janitor.

    No, you can’t take responsibility in a world of victims, liars, and indolent blamers. Nothing is ever my fault. It’s YOUR fault. SO why don’t YOU go do some work while I eat cheetos and complain?

    Three things here:

    #7: “Thou shalt no steal.”
    #9: “Thou shalt not bear false witness (and lie).
    #10: “Thou shalt not covet they neighbor’s goods”, say “oooh, pretty, I want some, give it to me now, you’re rich, I’m poor, so I deserve all your stuff.

    You get YOUR stuff. If you’re lucky, probably people will undoubtedly just give you stuff. That’s a happy bonus.

    Guess why? If you DON’T follow these rules, nobody makes ANY stuff, and you all starve together. If you lie, cheat, and steal, nobody’s going to make or do anything? Why should they? You’ll just take it, and not only will they not have it, they’ll be helping thieves, murderers, and lazy connivers. I’d not make stuff and live poor JUST TO PISS THEM OFF and not let them prosper. Given 100 years of Socialism, apparently everyone agrees with me.

    If the society has no honesty, no responsibility, and only envy and violence, nothing can help them. One man alone can do little except adjust to the weather.



    What is really needed …. ????? ….. a controller to make lalaland a reality

    Dr. D

    “without government intervention, unregulated private capitalism”

    It’s an interesting argument, focused on definitions. WHERE on earth has there ever been a lack of government intervention? People exist, and as soon as there are three, someone’s in charge. Get over 1,000 and there’s a government. When has it ever been unregulated? As far as I know, Thou shalt not murder, steal, etc… So when a company poisons a river, then commits fraud on their customers, I’m pretty sure it’s a crime. Always has been, before the first corporation, and no government anywhere at any time dares even CLAIM that it isn’t — regardless of whether they actually enforce it or not.

    So there IS no “unregulated” capitalism. Fraud is fraud. Theft is theft. Murder is murder. The problem you seem to find is that the government does not enforce the laws of the civil society. Is that “Capitalism’s” fault? “Capitalism” just means you can make and trade stuff. Your neighbors aren’t allowed to steal it. That predicates a government that prevents the stealing and both enforces and ajudicates justice. Although with only three humans the individual himself will mete that justice, Capitalism basically depends on a functioning government, rule of law, and functioning society. And the rules must be reliable and can’t change constantly to create fake winners and losers.

    So where is the drawback here? You say monopolies. Who enforces them? Government. Who regulates them? Government. Who violently attacks any attempted competition in epipens seeking to fill the human need? Government. Who is creating unjust laws that benefit these monopolies? Government. Who is taking the bribes to accomplish this? Government. Who isn’t enforcing bribery laws on themselves to make this happen? Government. Who prevents alternative means to solve these problems, not only in competition, but in health, in justice, in services like social welfare? Government.

    So if the people allow government to do all these things, allow, love, support, enthusiastically vote for, fight and die for, the people in government who most strongly malign, bankrupt, imprison, kill anyone who reveals them or the crimes they commit on behalf of the wealthy, what am I going to say? A man had gold. He offered it to the Senator. Was he arrested for the bribe? Was the Senator? Then the illegal, unjust crimes they committed in exchange for this gold, were any of those arrested, protested, did you the citizen rise up and shut them all down? No. You blame the idea that people should be able to make things. You say they don’t own the things they make and need permission to trade them. You say people shouldn’t be prosperous, but impoverished, as that gold makes crimes. …If gold makes crimes, you’ve ain’t seen the crimes that the LACK of gold makes. That’s the real paint-peeler.

    “Capitalism” is not society. It’s not meant to be. It’s just making stuff. YOU are society, which has religious, justice, familial, ecological, and a thousand other considerations and responsibilities. The whole society has failed justice, failed the poor, failed to prevent theft, failed to stop bribery, extortion, blackmail, murder. You blame “Capitalism” for that? Blame yourselves. A complete lack of responsibility, total abdication of all SOCIAL duties, not economic ones, of all RELIGIOUS morality, not market-based ones. If you clean up all that, Capitalism will reflect your morality and justice with great and responsible behavior.

    …Meanwhile, if you outlaw it, you will create worldwide poverty, the desperate, violent crime that accompanies it, a violent black market run by ruthless warlords and racketeers, and STILL the corrupt, violent, unjust government perched on top of the dung heap. Yet “Capitalism” will continue to exist and prosper, whether you allow it or not. You can get a 14-year old hooker to deliver 10 bags of coke and a full-auto right now with a phone call, and you can murder her and pay off the judge in every town. Is that “Capitalism”? No, that’s humanity refusing to do their job, and giving up, ceding all power, asking the government to do what THEY refuse to do for themselves. …And guess what, when all men cede all religion, all society, all responsibility and power, things go badly.

    I’m going to keep making and selling stuff, with or without your permission. But if you don’t give me permission the price of all things will be much, much higher, and you’ll be a lot, lot hungrier.


    Dr. D
    Enjoyed your very well stated comments on capitalism but I’d like to add my own thoughts on one more comment that Phoenixvoice presented.

    Phoenixvoice Re: Piketty
    ” However, over time capitalism tends to naturally accrue profit and resources into the hands of the few. (Piketty proved this a few years ago.) ”

    Piketty was completely wrong. Capitalism is the victim here. Capitalism doesn’t tend to naturally accure profits. Not at all. It is the capitalist (would be plutocrats) who take advantage of the system and the government to concentrate wealth in the hands of the few that distort capitalism into plutocracy and destroy the capitalist systems that have served the people so well. Once the wealth is concentrated in the hands of the few then it’s no longer capitalism. Capitalism is dead, Plutocracy rules. A proper government’s duty to it’s citizens is to keep the capitalist system from becoming a plutocracy.

    Capitalism is at the core of human nature. The desire to explore, create and improve one’s lot in life is driven by clever human who enlist other humans to help create their visions. It is not so much the job of government to regulate capitalism as it is to protect the ever evolving human nature of capitalism from a hostile takeover. Unfortunately most “bought and paid for” governments choose to be part of the takeover.

    John Day

    @Phoenix Voice: Thanks, Sister. Good work. You are human.

    : Good stuff you posted Friday and Saturday. I agree.

    @Mr. House, I’m 62 and I read TAE a lot more that NC these days.
    Also, people who are compromised and have to put up with sexual predation are carefully selected by the sexual predators. When there is a change of situation, the prey will strike back.
    What, you never had to put up with anything?
    Back when I had to hitchhike an hour to work and back near Ft. Hood, Tx in the summer of 1977 I got a fair number of rides from “gay” GIs on the make. I was 19. I put up with a lot of sweet talking, and moved fondling hands away, to get to work. Nothing overtly criminal happened, and it never came to a fight.
    I was relieved to get fired for smoking a joint and moved back to Austin, to a different learning opportunity, then college again in the fall.

    Mr. House


    So play the game just because? My point being if she didn’t like what she saw she coulda done something about it, but it would have cost her any kind of future in politics. Does that disqualify you from pointing it out later, no, but it doesn’t make you seem like some sort of zenith of moral fortitude in my mind.

    Mr. House

    “When there is a change of situation, the prey will strike back.”

    I disagree, most people just want to be left alone.

    “Conquered men, women, children, elderly people — they don’t spontaneously rise up and try to kill people who abuse and oppress them. Most people are not heroic. Most people are easily terrified, especially once they have already been placed in subjugated position. And if they are heroic, they usually die heroic deaths, alone. It continues to happen all over the world. Right now, somewhere, someone is being beaten and horribly abused and even if given the opportunity to strike back at the person doing the abuse, they won’t take it.
    In Roman Britain, the tribes didn’t stage a successful coup against the occupying forces even when given ample opportunity and more than enough reason to unite. On three separate occasions, the governor of Britain broke off from the empire. Even in a state of Roman civil war, the tribes were unable to eject the Romans. The one very notable case of rebellion was during Suetonius Paulinus’ campaign in what is now Wales. The leader of the Iceni, Boudica, was beaten and her daughters were raped because Boudica challenged the transition of her late husband’s authority to the Roman governor (Paulinus). Only with Londinium essentially vacated of military forces did the Iceni and Trinovantes dare to attack. They were successful in causing a huge amount of civilian damage, but in the end, Paulinus’ troops rolled over the Iceni and routed them. The nearby Brigantes provided essentially no help to the Iceni and at least one source suggests Boudica may have even been poisoned by the Brigantes’ queen. Someone mentioned Nero earlier; it’s worth noting that all of this happened under Nero’s rule and Rome still easily held Britain despite Nero’s general lack of… being good as an emperor.
    This pattern can be found a lot in history. It’s rare for spontaneous uprisings to happen against conquerors. Or rather, it’s more appropriate to say that it is extremely common for abusive occupation to go effectively uncontested for years, decades, or even centuries.”

    John Day

    Gotta eat and pay rent before you can take a stand.
    Again, sexual and other predators are smart. Predators watch the prey and move in when they hold all the advantages.
    Predators are smart, cunning, conniving and know how to do this. It’s a series of sequenced preparations and attack. Epstein had it to a complete science, a Mossad honey-trap-Disneyland operation.
    Jeffrey is hiding out somewhere, and an unlucky guy who looked kinda’ like him got snuffed.

    Mr. House
    Mr. House

    “Gotta eat and pay rent before you can take a stand.”

    She looks like an intelligent women, plenty of other jobs she could have had. You’re missing my point, which when it comes to people like that can be reduced to “shit or get off the pot”. I think we’re coming to a tipping point with that phrase with regards to both the left and the right. Shut up or do something. Power concedes nothing without a demand.


    I feel like I’m a bystander listening to a debates of the educated elites.

    The most important phrase that I’ve hear, for the past 3 weeks. ” Have you had a bowel movement today?”
    Biden’s helpers

    Look, read and bookmark this elitist discussion.

    BlackRock Investment Institute
    AUGUST 2019

    Dealing with the next downturn:
    From unconventional monetary policy to
    unprecedented policy coordination
    Elga Bartsch – Head of Macro Research, BlackRock Investment Institute
    Jean Boivin – Head, BlackRock Investment Institute
    Stanley Fischer – Senior Advisor, BlackRock Investment Institute
    Philipp Hildebrand – Vice Chairman, BlackRock
    Key contributor
    Simon Wan – Senior Economist, BlackRock Investment Institute




    In 1983, I spent 6 months working in a Siberian coal mine.

    I was an experienced world travel by then.

    The most glaring thing that hit me, was the complete lack of hope I saw all around me.

    This was because no one could improve their lot in life. One could not even change your job or where you lived!

    As a result everyone in Russia drank heavily to try and escape their reality, if only for a while.

    I concluded, communism was the worst governing system available to mankind. Communism is now outlawed in Russia! They should know!

    Dictatorships, were better but often not very much better.

    To be honest, as bad and corrupt as the US and Canada are, most of the rest of the world is worse!


    Dr. D.:

    I laughed when you mentioned Soviet centrally planned … economy!

    When I was working in Siberia in 1983, one day I insisted to my Russian interpreter that I wanted to visit the town’s only non-food store. Yes, they had a food store with empty shelves but that is another story!

    Reluctantly she took me!

    Once inside the store, more like a dark empty warehouse with one clerk behind a long counter, I struggled mightly to find something to buy! There was virtually nothing I wanted!

    I had to forced myself to buy something! You know just for the experience!

    I bought a Russian made thermos!

    On the way home, the thermos separated into 3 pieces! Once home I reassembled the thermos and poured water into it to see how it worked!

    Sadly the stopper didn’t keep the water in, if the thermos was laid on it’s side! The drinking cup didn’t screw on top properly. The bottom half didn’t screw into the main body properly either!

    In short nothing about the thermos worked! No wonder the Russians had all left it at the store for a greater fool, like me, to buy!

    P.S. Before, while in Moscow, I had visited G.U.M. the world’s biggest empty department store! I bought a pair of D sized batteries! That is a separate story in itself!

    P.S. There is no toliet paper in Siberia!


    I grew up with the adage – “we don’t know if socialism works – it’s never been tried”. Literally true, but also a fig leaf for the intellectual failure of the ideology. It’s not generally said, but the same is also true about capitalism (it generally gets the more positive version – “its the least worst system”.

    But nowhere in the history or the future of the world do we get to observe these systems free of human greed, power, coercion. Government and financial systems are like electron pairs – not only are they interdependent, one doesn’t exist without the other. So all talk of the theoretical merits and advantages of one vs the other is just farting in the breeze.

    Personally I think Piketty (and his rich vein of intellectual predecessors) was spot on the money in saying that unchecked capital tends to monopoly. I’d go farther and say it’s self-evident. And where a modicum of competition persists, it becomes oligarchy instead. Which is precisely what the incentives would predict.

    However – capitalism unleashes human creativity in ways socialism can only dream of. That speaks to human motivation, and some humans are born with an outrageous amount of individual drive. Capitalism harnesses that drive, whereas socialism homogenises it away, diluting it towards the norm for the sake of conformity and “equality”.

    I’ve not been able to shake the brilliance of the insight since I first heard it (hat tip Caitlin Johnstone, though she may have plagiarised it) that the system of choice where you need more of something is capitalism. It delivers in spades. And the system of choice where you need to optimise something (as opposed to incentivising growth) is socialism. Which is why socialised medicine over almost the entire planet is vastly more efficient than US capitalised medicine (which in it’s constant focus on growth might better be characterised as a cancer in its own right).

    One of the most toxic changes of the last couple of decades has been the expansion of the Intellectual Property (IP) industry. To be clear – fuck IP. As originally conceived – to protect innovative investment for a moderate period to incentivise R & D – excellent. As weaponised by the metastacised legal industry in the US – utter and complete insanity. Write a book, film or song and enjoy windfall profits for 70 years +? Utter, utter, utter madness, at a cost of stifling human growth and ingenuity.

    Unconstrained Capital – through power – weaponises the political and legal system to it’s advantage. That’s perhaps a third of all history, paraphrased.


    > Personally I think Piketty (and his rich vein of intellectual predecessors) was spot on the money in saying that unchecked capital tends to monopoly. I’d go farther and say it’s self-evident. And where a modicum of competition persists, it becomes oligarchy instead. Which is precisely what the incentives would predict..

    Thanks for this, HN. AFAICS capital *easily and inevitably* buys the political process- that’s where we are now, IMO- with the consequent elevation of figures like Gates, Bezos, Schwartzman as apolitical (heh!) Smart Guys
    who will Save Us.. no thank you, please. Bertam Gross’s book ‘Friendly Fascism’ ca. 1980 is worth a read,
    or reread, except it’s not so “friendly” now- as Gross predicted.

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