Saul Leiter Man in straw hat 1955
What happened to us?
.@elonmusk on @theallinpod $TWTR
The company is no longer in the fast lane to bankruptcy.
At the same time releasing more features then ever before, while improving cost structure by a factor of 3 or 4.
MSM would hype up any other public CEO if they did this in six weeks. pic.twitter.com/3I90Rqh57g
— Rahul (@rhemrajani9) December 24, 2022
"To be totally frank, almost every conspiracy theory that people had about Twitter turned out to be true." pic.twitter.com/zBDY3AcrRq
— Gretchen 🇺🇸 (@GretchenOO8) December 25, 2022
BREAKING NEWS: U.S. Doctors warn the world to stop taking the Covid Vaccines, they are toxic, lethal, ineffective and must be stopped. They damage the brain, heart, liver, bone marrow, fetus, causing all sorts of harm in the body. CDC, FDA misinformation causing death and injury. pic.twitter.com/yNyO0xWtMK
— Truth Justice ™ (@SpartaJustice) December 24, 2022
Never leaves the human body
The entire world needs to understand they can no longer take these gene therapy injections. They are toxic, lethal and ineffective, they have completely failed, can only be viewed as harmful, and they need to be stopped immediately!
Full video here:https://t.co/kIPbymIrrD
— Coronavirus Plushie (@c_plushie) December 25, 2022
They are terrified of the unvaxxed as we are not falling sick and suffering any increase in myocarditis/cancer/fertility issues etc.
In effect we are the control group and the ultimate proof that the inject and not long covid is causing harm.
Our life is our message!! pic.twitter.com/cTvZxPsaxZ
— Kat A 🌸 (@SaiKate108) December 24, 2022
“..the nuclear triad. It is the main guarantee that our sovereignty and territorial integrity, strategic parity and the general balance of forces in the world are preserved..”
• Ukraine War Tolls Death Knell for NATO (Bhadrakuma)r
The defining moment in US President Joe Biden’s press conference at the White House last Wednesday, during President Zelensky’s visit, was his virtual admission that he is constrained in the proxy war in Ukraine, as European allies don’t want a war with Russia. To quote Biden, “Now, you say, ‘Why don’t we just give Ukraine everything there is to give?’ Well, for two reasons. One, there’s an entire Alliance that is critical to stay with Ukraine. And the idea that we would give Ukraine material that is fundamentally different than is already going there would have a prospect of breaking up NATO and breaking up the European Union and the rest of the world… I’ve spent several hundred hours face-to-face with our European allies and the heads of state of those countries, and making the case as to why it was overwhelmingly in their interest that they continue to support Ukraine… They understand it fully, but they’re not looking to go to war with Russia. They’re not looking for a third World War.”
Biden realised at that point that “I probably already said too much” and abruptly ended the press conference. He probably forgot that he was dwelling on the fragility of Western unity. The whole point is that the western commentariat largely forgets that Russia’s core agenda is not about territorial conquest — much as Ukraine is vital to Russian interests — but about NATO expansion. And that has not changed. Every now and then President Putin revisits the fundamental theme that the US consistently aimed to weaken and dismember Russia. As recently as last Wednesday, Putin invoked the Chechen war in the 1990s — “the use of international terrorists in the Caucasus, to finish off Russia and to split the Russian Federation… They [US] claimed to condemn al-Qaeda and other criminals, yet they considered using them on the territory of Russia as acceptable and provided all kinds of assistance to them, including material, information, political and any other support, notably military support, to encourage them to continue fighting against Russia.”
Putin has a phenomenal memory and would have been alluding to Biden’s careful choice of William Burns as his CIA chief. Burns was Moscow Embassy’s point person for Chechnya in the 1990s! Putin has now ordered a nation-wide campaign to root out the vast tentacles that the US intelligence planted on Russian soil for internal subversion. Carnegie, once headed by Burns, has since shut down its Moscow office, and the Russian staff fled to the West! The leitmotif of the expanded meeting of the Board of the Defence Ministry in Moscow on Wednesday, which Putin addressed, was the profound reality that Russia’s confrontation with the US is not going to end with Ukraine war. Putin exhorted the Russian top brass to “carefully analyse” the lessons of Ukraine and Syrian conflicts. Importantly, Putin said, “We will continue maintaining and improving the combat readiness of the nuclear triad. It is the main guarantee that our sovereignty and territorial integrity, strategic parity and the general balance of forces in the world are preserved. This year, the level of modern armaments in the strategic nuclear forces has already exceeded 91 percent. We continue rearming the regiments of our strategic missile forces with modern missile systems with Avangard hypersonic warheads.”
“..Zelensky has laid out a series of 10 conditions that must be met for peace to be achieved..”
That’s what you do when you’re losing.. You come with conditions.
• Putin Says He’s Ready To Negotiate ‘With Everyone Involved’ Over Ukraine (Hill)
Russian President Vladimir Putin said that he’s ready to negotiate “with everyone involved” in the war with Ukraine. Putin told a Russian news reporter in an interview that aired on Russian media on Sunday that the Kremlin is ready to negotiate but their enemy are the ones refusing to talk. The comments from the Russian leader follow intense Russian shelling on the Ukrainian city of Kherson on Christmas Eve that killed at least 10 people and injured more than 50 others. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky denounced Russia as “absolute evil” on Saturday following the deadly strikes, which he said were for “the sake of intimidation and pleasure.” Zelensky and President Biden discussed what a “just peace” would look like when Zelensky visited the United States on Wednesday for his first international trip since the war started in February.
Zelensky has laid out a series of 10 conditions that must be met for peace to be achieved, including total Russian withdrawal from Ukrainian territory. This would also include a Russian withdrawal from the Crimean Peninsula under the Ukrainian demands. [..] Putin has previously called on Ukraine and the international community to recognize Crimea as part of Russia, which they have been unwilling to do. Putin said in the interview that Russia is defending its national interests and its citizens in the 10-month conflict, The Associated Press reported. But he said Russia is prepared to negotiate “some acceptable outcomes” with all participants in the conflict. Putin called the conflict a war for the first time in a televised news conference on Thursday, saying it is Russia’s goal to end it. He previously only referred to it as a “special military operation.”
Putin: Russia has long sought to integrate with the West but was ultimately rejected. pic.twitter.com/X6JtEhZTrx
— Putin Direct (@PutinDirect) December 25, 2022
“..we are defending our national interests, the interests of our citizens, our people..”
• Putin “Ready” To Negotiate, But West Wants To “Tear Apart” Russia (ZH)
In a Sunday interview with Rossiya 1 state television, Russian President Vladimir Putin said his country is now ready to negotiate an end to the conflict in Ukraine. However, he once again pointed the finger at the West for making any dialogue toward an acceptable end to the fighting all but impossible. “We are ready to negotiate with everyone involved about acceptable solutions, but that is up to them – we are not the ones refusing to negotiate, they are,” Putin said. “I believe that we are acting in the right direction, we are defending our national interests, the interests of our citizens, our people. And we have no other choice but to protect our citizens,” he added. From Moscow’s point of view, a signal of Ukraine’s ‘seriousness’ about talks would likely hinge on Kiev’s willingness to compromise on territorial concessions, especially regarding the Donbas in the east.
Additionally the Ukrainians would likely have to acknowledge Russian control over the Crimea. However, President Zelensky on Wednesday in his speech before Congress pledged “absolute victory” and has of late been vehement in rejecting any talk of letting go of territory as a non-starter, especially as the months-long Ukrainian counteroffensive has met with some significant successes.Also in the interview Putin continued his theme of the US and NATO waging a proxy war using Ukraine as a pawn. He said in the Sunday comments that the West is attempting to “tear apart” Russia. “At the core of it all is the policy of our geopolitical opponents, aiming to tear apart Russia, the historical Russia,” Putin said. “They have always tried to ‘divide and conquer’… Our goal is something else – to unite the Russian people.”
“..were orchestrated to provide Europe with more expensive liquefied [natural] gas from America.”
• Only One Nation Benefits From Sanctions On Russia – Minister (RT)
The sanctions the West has slapped on Russia over the Ukraine conflict are taking a heavy toll on the European economy, while the United States is the only actor profiting from the restrictions, Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said on Saturday. Speaking to Asharq News daily, the minister claimed that Western sanctions had helped the Americans to achieve what they wanted, saying “their supplies of oil and gas to the European market have increased.” Energy shipments from the US, however, have proved costly for Europeans, resulting in skyrocketing inflation and decreased competitive power for European businesses, Siluanov said. According to the minister, both Western sanctions and the blasts that ruptured the Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines in late September “were orchestrated to provide Europe with more expensive liquefied [natural] gas from America.”
“America benefits, Europe loses,” he explained. Moscow has called the sabotage a terrorist attack, claiming that the US stood to benefit the most from the explosions. While Washington has denied any involvement, Secretary of State Antony Blinken described the incident as a “tremendous opportunity” for Europe to wean itself off of Russian energy. Siluanov went on to admit that sanctions have affected the Russian economy. “But they inflicted on the West no less, and perhaps even more pain,” he said, adding that the sanctions rhetoric has now become routine. The minister noted that the EU price cap on Russian oil “will certainly lead to price and market distortions,” reiterating Moscow’s position that it would not provide crude under contracts conforming to Western-mandated restrictions.
Russian oil companies are rerouting their oil shipments from the West in other directions, the minister said. “We will be looking for new markets, looking for new logistics. It is possible that this would be more expensive,” he stated. Earlier this month, the EU, the G7 countries and Australia introduced a price limit on Russian seaborne oil, set at $60 per barrel. The measure also prohibits Western companies from providing insurance and other services to shipments of Russian crude, unless the cargo is purchased at or below the indicated price. Following the move, Kremlin Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov warned that the restrictions would wreak havoc on global oil markets, while Russian President Vladimir Putin said that Moscow was not planning to sell oil to nations supporting the price cap.
Erdogan plays his cards.
• Erdogan Accuses West Of ‘Provocations’ Over Ukraine (RT)
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has praised Türkiye’s role in securing a grain deal between Russia and Ukraine, claiming in a speech on Sunday that unlike Ankara, Western nations did not make any tangible diplomatic efforts to resolve the conflict. “Unfortunately, the West has only made provocations and failed to make efforts to be a mediator in the Ukraine-Russia war,” Erdogan said at a youth event in Türkiye’s eastern Erzurum province on Sunday. Türkiye has thus “assumed this mediator role in 2022” and is set to continue its diplomatic efforts next year, building up on the success of the Black Sea corridor created as part of an Istanbul grain deal in July, Erdogan said.
The grain corridor was touted as a way to secure food supplies to the neediest nations as a matter of priority, but Erdogan confirmed Russia’s long-standing concerns, saying on Sunday that some 44 percent of the grain exported from Ukraine went to Europe instead. In the meantime Moscow voiced its readiness to supply African nations with “large volumes” of grain and fertilizers out of its own stocks for free. Ankara adopted a neutral position early in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, refusing to take part in the Western sanctions on Moscow, while continuing its military cooperation with Kiev – including selling a number of Bayraktar attack drones. A preliminary peace agreement was reportedly reached in Istanbul as early as March, but was later rejected by Ukraine under alleged pressure from the West.
The grain deal, touted as a rare victory for diplomacy, was signed in July by representatives of Russia, Ukraine, Türkiye and the UN, with a Joint Coordination Center set up in Istanbul to oversee the shipments. In late October, Russia briefly suspended its participation in the agreement, after accusing Kiev of launching a terrorist attack on the Crimea bridge, and drone strikes on ships involved in securing safe passage for agricultural cargo. Moscow ultimately returned to the accord after receiving unspecified “written security guarantees” from Kiev. Last month, Moscow allowed “a technical prolongation” of the deal, but Russian officials have repeatedly voiced concerns that the deal is not meeting its stated goals, and have also insisted that the provisions on lifting the restrictions on Russian agricultural exports were not being fulfilled. The Turkish president expressed hope that the issue of fertilizer exports and Moscow’s other concerns would be resolved through “more intense” negotiations next year.
Keep on poking…
• West Issues Ultimatum To Serbia – Media (RT)
Several Western countries have “sent an ultimatum” to Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic, demanding that Serbs in the northern part of breakaway Kosovo end their stand-off with local authorities, news website Pink.rs reported on Sunday. The outlet claims that ambassadors of the Quint group, comprising the US, the UK, France, Germany and Italy, are calling for barricades in the region be removed within 24 hours. If Belgrade fails to ensure this, the Western powers will reportedly let Albin Kurti, Kosovo’s ethnic Albanian prime minister, attack local Serbs. Earlier, Kurti warned that the “removal of these barricades cannot exclude casualties.”
Tensions between Belgrade and Pristina flared up earlier this month when Serbs, who make up the majority in the northern part of province, put up barriers to protest against the arrest of a former police officer, accused of attacking a Kosovo law enforcement patrol. After this, Vucic asked NATO’s KFOR peacekeepers for permission to deploy up to 1,000 Serbian troops and police officers in Kosovo, as it is entitled to do under UN Security Council Resolution 1244, which put an end to the NATO bombing of the former Yugoslavia in 1999. However, these plans were resisted by the US, with Gabriel Escobar, the State Department’s special envoy for the region, saying Washington had given Kosovo “very firm security guarantees.”
On Sunday, KFOR said that shots had been fired near a NATO patrol in northern part of Kosovo, close to the roadblocks, adding that there were no casualties. It stopped short of assigning blame. However, Serbian media, citing eyewitnesses, claimed that the incident took place when Kosovo’s special forces attempted to clear barricades near a town of Zubin Potok. With no sign of tensions abating, Milan Mojsilovic, Chief of General Staff of the Serbian Armed Forces, told local media on Sunday that the situation is complex, and requires the presence of the Serbian military along the administrative line which divides Kosovo from the rest of Serbia. NATO took control of Kosovo in 1999, after bombing Serbia on behalf of ethnic Albanian separatists. The province’s provisional government declared independence in 2008, which Belgrade has refused to recognize.
They’re shot down but still kill.
• Ukraine Hits Airbase 300 Miles Deep into Russia (GR)
Ukraine attacked with a drone an airbase in Russia’s Saratov region which lies about 500km (310 miles) northeast of the border with Ukraine. Three Russian military personnel were killed at Engels bomber base Russian news agencies reported, citing the defense ministry. Russian state media agency Tass quotes the defense ministry as saying: “On December 26, at around 01:35 Moscow time (2235 GMT), a Ukrainian unmanned aerial vehicle was shot down at low altitude while approaching the Engels military airfield in the Saratov region. “As a result of the fall of the wreckage of the drone, three Russian technical servicemen who were at the airfield were fatally injured.”
Russia accuses Ukraine of carrying out a similar attack on the airfield, home to strategic bombers, on 5 December. In that attack three servicemen were also killed by debris from a downed Ukrainian drone, Moscow said at the time. Two aircraft were lightly damaged. According to Reuters, the twin strikes dealt Russia a major reputational blow and raised questions about why its defenses failed, analysts said, as attention turned to the use of drones in the war between neighbors. Ukraine has never publicly claimed responsibility for attacks in Russia, but has said, however, that such incidents are “karma” for Russia’s invasion. As CNN reported recently Ukraine’s state-owned weapons manufacturer Ukroboronprom has indicated several times in the last few weeks that it is close to finishing work on a new long-range drone.
“..Unfortunately, our supporters aren’t going to buy it either.”
• GOP Senators Blast McConnell For ‘Arrogance,’ Voter Betrayal (JTN)
Conservative GOP senators blasted Minority Leader Mitch McConnell on Sunday for shepherding with Democrats a $1.7 trillion year-end spending bill into law over the objections of House Republicans, saying it was an act of “arrogance” that betrayed promises to voters. “Our party leadership turned on Republican voters, turned on the Republican base, turned on most Republican senators,” Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, told “The Cats Roundtable” and host John Catsimitidas on WABC radio in New York. “It has happened before, but this is one too many times. For me, this is the final straw.” Lee called the omnibus spending bill signed into law Friday “the ugliest spending bill on record” and one that signaled “that voters don’t see much of a defining difference with Democrats.”
Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., mocked those of his GOP colleagues who voted for the bill and celebrated its passage. “To declare that a victory, to say that’s a win, that’s like a football team that just lost the game 60 to 0, and they kick a field goal in the waning seconds and say the field goal is a big win,” Johnson told Catsimitidas. “No, we just got our you-know-whats handed to us.” Johnson said that McConnell’s maneuver not only betrayed conservative voters but also undercut House Republicans about to take over in January who had asked for a short-term spending plan. “Unfortunately, the arrogance of our leadership who said, ‘We know better than House members. We’re going to pass this.’ … I’m not buying it,” Johnson said. “Unfortunately, our supporters aren’t going to buy it either.”
Other senators took to Twitter to express their disdain for the spending law, warning it will worsen inflation next year. “I voted AGAINST the $1.7 TRILLION spending bill because I promised Florida families I’d fight every day to make Washington work for them,” Sen. Rick Scott, R-Fla., tweeted. “This reckless inflation bomb is a disaster for our economy and a slap in the face to Floridians struggling to make ends meet.”
“The Senators were nestled all snug in their beds, while visions of pork danced in their heads. No budget was found, just mischief and debt.”
• Rand Paul Savages DC Elites With Epic “’Twas the Night Before Christmas” (DCE)
This Wednesday, Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) posted a parody of the classic Christmas poem “‘Twas the Night Before Christmas” to this social media, this time directed at the Democrat’s omnibus spending bill — which costs America a whopping $1.7 trillion dollars. “Twas the week before Christmas, and through the Senate and House, not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse. The earmarks were hung by the chimney with care, in hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there,” Paul begins.= “The Senators were nestled all snug in their beds, while visions of pork danced in their heads. No budget was found, just mischief and debt. While the taxpayers hung their poor heads and wept. When out on the lawn arose such a clatter — Senators sprang from their oxygen. What was the matter?” Paul added. “Away to the window, they flew like a flash, tore open the shutter when they heard the word cash.”
Then Senator Paul decided to name names — and he was genuinely bipartisan here, scorching high spenders on both sides of the aisle! Note: This article may contain commentary reflecting the author’s opinion. This Wednesday, Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) posted a parody of the classic Christmas poem “‘Twas the Night Before Christmas” to this social media, this time directed at the Democrat’s omnibus spending bill — which costs America a whopping $1.7 trillion dollars. “Twas the week before Christmas, and through the Senate and House, not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse. The earmarks were hung by the chimney with care, in hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there,” Paul begins. “The Senators were nestled all snug in their beds, while visions of pork danced in their heads. No budget was found, just mischief and debt.
“While the taxpayers hung their poor heads and wept. When out on the lawn arose such a clatter — Senators sprang from their oxygen. What was the matter?” Paul added. “Away to the window, they flew like a flash, tore open the shutter when they heard the word cash.” Then Senator Paul decided to name names — and he was genuinely bipartisan here, scorching high spenders on both sides of the aisle! “With a little old driver so lively and quick, I knew in a moment it must be Saint Nick. More rapid than eagles. His coursers they came, and he whistled and shouted and called them by name: Now, McConnell! Now, Schumer! Now, Pelosi and Vixen! On Biden! On Stupid! On Dumber and Blitzen! To debt! To bankruptcy! To free money for all”
“We need to halt everything with the FBI, all funding, until they come forward and explain to Congress exactly what they were doing..”
• Rep. James Comer Calls For Defunding the FBI (DCE)
On Tuesday, Rep. James Comer, who is expected to be the incoming chair of the House Oversight Committee, spoke to Fox News’ Maria Bartiromo about the recent revelations from the “Twitter Files” about the FBI’s influence in the silencing of the Hunter Biden laptop story in October 2020. When asked about the latest releases of the Twitter files, which outlined the FBI’s cooperation with Twitter to counter “misinformation” and “disinformation” on the social media site, Comer emphasized that the initial discovery proves wrongdoing, but additional investigations will have to be conducted.“Well, it means a lot more evidence of wrongdoing,” he told Bartiromo. “You know, in the beginning, I thought that there were probably two or three rogue employees who were orchestrating this cover-up of the Hunter Biden laptop story. But now we know the FBI had a division of at least 80 agents.”
“We also know that the FBI paid Twitter over $3 million for their time, all the time they took over the past couple of years in telling them who to suppress, who to ban,” the congressman explained. “You know, it’s just things that the government has no role in. The FBI was never granted the authority to create any type of disinformation task force that policed the social media sites.” “Now, this we know with Twitter, we’ve heard similar stories from Zuckerberg,” the Kentuckian explained referencing Zuckerberg’s admittance that Facebook deemphasized stories at the request of the FBI. “Who knows what went on at YouTube and Google? This is an agency that’s out of control.”
“And the most frustrating thing for me right now, Maria, is the fact that in this omnibus bill, there’s increased funding for the FBI, plus a $1.75 billion headquarters facility for the FBI,” he explained in reference to the $1.7 trillion omnibus bill currently being considered in the Senate. “We need to halt everything with the FBI, all funding, until they come forward and explain to Congress exactly what they were doing, why they were doing it, and who gave them the authority to do it.”
“..No weapons system is too costly. No war, no matter how disastrous, goes unfunded. No military budget is too big..”
• The Democrats are Now the War Party (Chris Hedges)
The Democrats position themselves as the party of virtue, cloaking their support for the war industry in moral language stretching back to Korea and Vietnam, when President Ngo Dinh Diem was as lionized as Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. All the wars they support and fund are “good” wars. All the enemies they fight, the latest being Russia’s Vladimir Putin and China’s Xi Jinping, are incarnations of evil. The photo of a beaming House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Vice President Kamala Harris holding up a signed Ukrainian battle flag behind Zelensky as he addressed Congress was another example of the Democratic Party’s abject subservience to the war machine.
The Democrats, especially with the presidency of Bill Clinton, became shills not only for corporate America but for the weapons manufacturers and the Pentagon. No weapons system is too costly. No war, no matter how disastrous, goes unfunded. No military budget is too big, including the $858 billion in military spending allocated for the current fiscal year, an increase of $45 billion above what the Biden administration requested. The historian Arnold Toynbee cited unchecked militarism as the fatal disease of empires, arguing that they ultimatley commit suicide.
There once was a wing of the Democratic Party that questioned and stood up to the war industry: Senators J. William Fulbright, George McGovern, Gene McCarthy, Mike Gravel, William Proxmire and House member Dennis Kucinich. But that opposition evaporated along with the antiwar movement. When 30 members of the party’s progressive caucus recently issued a call for Biden to negotiate with Putin, they were forced by the party leadership and a warmongering media to back down and rescind their letter. Not that any of them, with the exception of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, have voted against the billions of dollars in weaponry sent to Ukraine or the bloated military budget. Rashida Tlaib voted present.
The opposition to the perpetual funding of the war in Ukraine has come primarily from Republicans, 11 in the Senate and 57 in the House, several, such as Marjorie Taylor Greene, unhinged conspiracy theorists. Only nine Republicans in the House joined the Democrats in supporting the $1.7 trillion spending bill needed to prevent the government from shutting down, which included approval of $847 billion for the military — the total is boosted to $858 billion when factoring in accounts that don’t fall under the Armed Services committees’ jurisdiction. In the Senate, 29 Republicans opposed the spending bill. The Democrats, including nearly all 100 members of the House Congressional Progressive Caucus, lined up dutifully for endless war.
DNC, FBI, FTX, Twitter, Soros. Nice.
• Soros Behind Twitter Operation to Shut Down Hunter Biden Laptop Story (BN)
First Draft News, a now-defunct nonprofit that left-wing billionaire George Soros’ Open Society Foundations funded, played a key role in Twitter’s preparation to shut down the Hunter Biden laptop story in 2020, according to internal documents published by author Michael Shellenberger as part of Elon Musk’s “Twitter Files.” The Aspen Institute hosted a September 2020 training exercise for members of the media and social media leaders regarding the handling of hypothetical data leaks which were similar to the Hunter Biden laptop report that broke in October, according to Shellenberger. Claire Wardle, former executive director and co-founder of First Draft News, appeared to be an attendee of the exercise, according to an email published by Shellenberger.
The address that apparently belonged to Wardle was one of multiple recipients in an email to top national security reporters, Facebook’s head of security policy and others, according to Shellenberger. The Open Society Foundations, which left-wing megadonor Soros chairs, once funded First Draft News. The organization shut down in June. “Today we are announcing that First Draft is closing its doors to make way for the next chapter — its mission will continue at the newly launched Information Futures Lab, an initiative from Brown’s School of Public Health,” an announcement from Wardle reads.
The Aspen Institute training exercise, titled “The Burisma Leak,” involved a series of hypothetical leaks during October 2020 showing that Hunter Biden had made more money in his role at Burisma than previously disclosed and had communicated with his father about his work there, Shellenberger reported. The exercise was meant to shape how the media covered the eventual leak of the Hunter Biden laptop story and the way social media platforms carried it. The Aspen Institute, a left-leaning think tank funded by massive philanthropic organizations including the Rockefeller Foundation and Ford Foundation, runs the Commission on Information Disorder, an anti-disinformation project that’s drawn ire from conservatives for its alleged far-left partisanship. The commission has urged social media platforms to censor accounts it considers misinformation “superspreaders” through demonetization, the removal of what it considers inaccurate posts and penalties for offending users.
Pretty brilliant history lesson.
• In Post-Soviet Russia, New Years Remains A Bigger Holiday Than Christmas (RT)
Present-day Russia is almost the only major Christian country in the world where New Year festivities are more prominent than those of Christmas. While Westerners are unpacking gifts on December 24th, Russians are still immersed in an atmosphere of their upcoming holiday, which, when it comes around, is filled with age-old traditions and lasts almost two weeks. To understand why the New Year has become a special celebration in Russia and what sets it apart from other countries, we must first dive into the history of the holiday. It was only in 1700 that Russia joined the pan-European tradition of celebrating the New Year on January 1, following a decree by Emperor Peter the Great. Before that, Russians had celebrated New Year’s on March 1, when it was time to prepare for the new season of agricultural work.
However, despite the will of the emperor, Russia did not fully synchronize with the rest of Europe – the country at the time functioned according to the old Julian calendar, while most European countries had already switched to the Gregorian one. Therefore, the new year in Russia began 13 days later. This became a key aspect that influenced the modern traditions of New Year celebrations. Thanks to Peter the Great, the New Year moved closer to the main Christian holiday, Christmas. For the next two hundred years, New Year and Christmas celebrations in Russia were a lot like those in Western Europe. The difference was only in the religious form – Russia followed Christian Orthodox canons, while the likes of France and Germany followed Catholic and Protestant ones.
Everything changed with the October Revolution, the overthrow of the emperor, and the creation of the new state – the USSR. The Bolsheviks carried out several reforms in the first years after the revolution that directly affected how Russia celebrates the New Year today, in the 21st century. On January 26, 1918, the Council of People’s Commissars of Russia issued a decree on the transition to the Gregorian calendar. As a result, the country celebrated the start of the year 1919 simultaneously with Western Europe. In 1929, the celebration of Christmas was officially ‘canceled.’ Although by this time the New Year had become a completely independent secular holiday, Christmas was privately celebrated in many homes.
Even in 1924, shortly before Lenin’s death, a Christmas Tree celebration was held for children. But, after 1929, the most important Christian date was erased from the calendar and remained exclusively in the homes of religious people. At the same time, the Orthodox Church did not switch to the Gregorian calendar, and therefore Orthodox Christmas is still celebrated on January 7, not December 25.
Brilliant bloopers from
BETWEEN TWO FERNS (2014)#ZachGalifianakis
— Michael Warburton (@MichaelWarbur17) December 24, 2022
The tortured genius that was PETER SELLERS tells a Michael Caine story on The Late Late Show in 1970 – cue Caine & Co instantly and brilliantly brought to vocal life…
— Michael Warburton (@MichaelWarbur17) December 25, 2022
A croc floats by.pic.twitter.com/BWbezOSXSD
— Fascinating (@fasc1nate) December 24, 2022
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