Pablo Picasso Portrait de femme (Dora Maar) 1943
BRICS+ is taking over and there’s nothing the West can do about it. The US dollar won’t be the worlds reserve currency and the US Govt won’t be able to print money on the backs of other nations. US Govt bonds will be junk because of insane US debt. The End pic.twitter.com/DTl8nIEuhE
— Kim Dotcom (@KimDotcom) December 18, 2022
New Jersey child asks Santa to gift him Covid19 vaccine pic.twitter.com/8ylBsaDJP8
— Wittgenstein (@backtolife_2023) December 18, 2022
“NATO and the Americans categorically refused to discuss the main political issue: a formal rejection of NATO expansion.”
• One Year Ago, Russia Gave The West A Last Chance (Lukyanov)
It’s been a year since a Russian document outlining proposals (or demands, if you prefer) for long-term guarantees on European security was delivered to NATO and the US. This was the starting point of the major politico-military crisis that defines the global situation today. Was the Russian ultimatum (and that is how it was formulated) designed to be rejected, or did it envisage a path to negotiations? President Vladimir Putin probably reasoned along the following lines: after so many years of ignoring our wishes and convictions, let’s give it one last chance. Let’s put forward the maximum set of demands, everything that has been said before, but outline them in one place and in a concentrated form, and see what happens.
If they realize that this time that it’s extremely serious, and with that in mind, decide on a real discussion, we are ready. However, if they start to waste time again, then that’s it. Let’s cut to the chase. If the response from the West was not satisfactory, the military operation in Ukraine would be the next step. There was apparently no chance of avoiding it by then. After all, the logic behind the need for the offensive was outlined in Putin’s big article in the summer of 2021. That is, the security demands were made when the internal readiness for action was already in place. The scale of the consequences leads many to return to the question: Was what happened inevitable? The argument that “we had no choice,” often heard at the highest level in Moscow, is problematic because it effectively means that Russia’s previous policies were wrong. A policy which leads to no alternative solution, i.e. forcing one to act in a certain way and no other way, cannot be considered successful.
So an analysis of the long period since the early 2000s will at some point be an important lesson for the future. Was there an urgent need to make demands and initiate the military operation at that point in time? Based on what we know now (which is probably not everything), there was room for maneuver and an opportunity to prepare better. Strategically, a conflict over Ukraine was probably inevitable, but the specific circumstances and timetable could have been different. Is anyone in the West kicking themselves right now? An ultimatum can only be accepted by great powers, and even more so by superpowers, as a result of a military defeat. So there was, I think, no chance of the demands being accepted. I have to say that the consultations that took place in January 2022 showed that the US was ready for some concessions on specific issues of military security.
To a greater extent than they had indicated before the demands were made. However, this amounted to very little relative to the overall picture. Most importantly, NATO and the Americans categorically refused to discuss the main political issue: a formal rejection of NATO expansion. For them, this is unacceptable because the military bloc’s enlargement is the basis of the entire international security philosophy as it has been understood in the West since the end of the Cold War. But even beyond this, in the West there is a complete absence (or perhaps a disappearance) of reflection on the history behind current events.
Arms treaties and diplomacy have been abandoned. They’re bad for business.
• A Lexicon for Disaster (Scott Ritter)
With no common language, there can be no common vision, no common purpose. Russia continues to seek arms control agreements which serve to restrict the arsenals of the involved parties to prevent dangerous escalatory actions while imposing a modicum of predictable stability on relations. The U.S. seeks only unilateral advantage. Until this is changed, there can be no meaningful arms control interaction between the U.S. and Russia. Not only will the New START treaty expire in February 2026, but it is also unlikely the major verification component of the treaty — on site inspections — will be revived between now and then. Moreover, it is impossible to see how a new arms control agreement to replace the expired New START treaty could be negotiated, ratified, and implemented in the short time remaining to do so.
There is no trust between Russia and the U.S. when it comes to arms control. With no treaties, there is no verification of reality. Both the U.S. and Russian arsenals will become untethered from treaty-based constraint, leading to a new arms race for which there can be only one finishing line — total nuclear war. There is a long list of things that must happen if meaningful arms control is ever to resume its place in the diplomatic arsenals of either the U.S. or Russia. Before either side can resume talking to one another, however, they must first re-learn the common language of disarmament. Because the current semantics of arms control is little more than a lexicon for disaster.
62 lawsuits. So far.
• EU Sued Over Anti-Russia Sanctions (RT)
Dozens of Russians and Belarusians have filed lawsuits at the EU Court of Justice, to challenge their inclusion on the sanctions list, the German newspaper Bild am Sonntag reported on Saturday. The Luxembourg-based court has reportedly received claims from one company and 61 individuals from Russia and Belarus, placed on the EU blacklist over their alleged support for Moscow’s military operation in Ukraine. The business figures are seeking to challenge what they view as a violation of their rights, and the freeze of their assets by EU authorities. According to the media report, the plaintiffs in Luxembourg include Russian billionaire and former owner of the English football club Chelsea, Roman Abramovich, ESN Group owner Grigory Berezkin, and Gennady Timchenko, who owns Volga Group, a Russia-based company with interests in energy, transportation and construction.
Alfa Group co-founder Mikhail Fridman and Alisher Usmanov, the owner Russia’s largest iron ore producer, are also among those suing. The EU has adopted nine rounds of anti-Russia sanctions since February 24, when Moscow launched its military operation in Ukraine. Aside from business people, the penalties include measures against Russian journalists and companies. On Friday, the EU blacklisted 141 Russian individuals and 49 legal entities, including ministers, governors, judges, parliament members, singers and presenters, as well as five political parties. The latest measures also deprived four more Russian media outlets of their broadcasting licenses in the EU, introduced a number of export bans, and extended restrictions on three more banks. Export restrictions were extended to 168 additional Russian entities closely linked to the Russian military-industrial complex, bringing the total number of sanctioned companies to 410.
Could be an interesting court case. Note Borrell’s involvement.
• Lawyer Claims Eva Kaili Followed EU Parliament Chief’s Orders In Qatar (Eur.)
Qatar had no need to bribe socialist MEP Eva Kaili as the latter was implementing a wider EU plan and was getting orders from EU Parliament President Roberta Metsola, Kaili’s lawyer Michalis Dimitrakopoulos alleged on Tuesday. Metsola’s office told EURACTIV that the president gave instructions on how to represent the institution’s position and “nothing else”. Last Friday, Greek MEP Eva Kaili, her partner Francesco Giorgi, and ex-MEP Pier Antonio Panzeri, president of the NGO Fight Against Impunity, were arrested by the Belgian police on suspicion of corruption. On a political level, with an overwhelming majority, the EU House sacked her yesterday from the vice presidency.
In an almost unanimous vote, EU lawmakers removed Eva Kaili as vice president of the European Parliament on Tuesday (13 December), following the so-called Qatargate, one of the biggest corruption scandals in the EU’s history. On Thursday, Belgian courts will decide whether she will remain in jail until the adjudication of the case. In an interview with Greek MEGA TV channel, Dimitrakopoulos said Kaili has nothing to do with bribery from Qatar. “What the public opinion needs to know is that Qatar did not need to bribe Ms Kaili because she went to Qatar as a representative of the European Parliament, the speeches, the interviews she gave were after the agreement and order of the President Roberta Metsola,” Dimitrakopoulos said.
He added that documents prove this and explained that Kaili did not take any initiative or have an agenda. “Ms Metsola sent her to Qatar, what she was going to say had Ms Metsola’s approval […] Ms Metsola had also sent EU official Mr Roberto Bendini with her to watch all of Ms Kaili’s meetings”, he explained. “I am telling you the words of Ms Kaili, she was carrying out a plan that had started in 2019, High Representative Josep Borrell and Ylva Johansson [Commissioner for Home Affairs] had decided at the Commission level, to cooperate with Qatar, Kuwait and Oman,” the lawyer added.
“..he resisted those calls and in 2020 was bumped up to the European Commission, as so often happens with scandal-tarnished domestic politicians in the EU…”
• Will the Fallout from “Qatargate” Splatter the European Commission? (NC)
For the moment, it is far from clear just how far this burgeoning scandal will reach. One thing that is clear is that the reputational damage will be large and lasting. The European Union’s ability to lecture the misbehaving governments of Member States and third-party countries on how to govern will be further diminished. As Hungary’s Victor Orban said in a video uploaded to his Facebook page, “It is time that we drain the swamp here in Brussels.” And he is right. EU institutions need to get their house in order once and for all, and fast. And that is unlikely to happen. The EU ombudsman Emily O’Reilly said this week that Von der Leyen’s proposed plan for a new ethics body is likely to end up as “something with no teeth, something that will possibly sit there passively, wait for complaints to come in.”
What the body really needs, O’Reilly said, is investigatory and sanctions powers. But that might actually threaten to derail the gravy train Brussels has become. And the problem is not just illegal cash payments stuffed away in paper bags and briefcases; it is the vast lobbying apparatus that has built up in Brussels, which is now the second largest lobbying capital in the world after Washington. As in Washington, lobbying reaches into just about every aspect of governance. In its 2015 report, CEO reported that lobbyists representing businesses and trade associations made up 75% of all high-level Commission lobby meetings and more than 80% in certain areas such as financial regulation or the internal market. The inevitable result, as in Washington, is that policies are made almost exclusively in the service of vested corporate interests.
Sometimes corporate lobbies even draft the EU’s legislation. This is the business model of modern governance. Lastly, if Borrell is indeed caught up in this burgeoning scandal and, by some miracle, loses his job, it would be no great loss to the EU’s 450 million citizens. He is the least diplomatic of diplomats. Just about every time he speaks, whether on the wonders of European colonialism or the vast untamed jungle that lies beyond Europe’s borders, damage is inflicted on the EU’s relations with some other part of the world. Since long before the Ukraine conflict he has played a leading role in escalating tensions with Russia, the EU’s biggest neighbor and energy supplier. He is also no stranger to scandal, having been convicted, in 2018, of insider trading in Spain. That resulted in him being placed on the Spanish market regulator’s blacklist. The ensuing scandal triggered calls for his resignation as Spain’s then-Foreign Minister. But he resisted those calls and in 2020 was bumped up to the European Commission, as so often happens with scandal-tarnished domestic politicians in the EU.
“..two days later and on a complete whim, he decided to sneak back into the police station carrying a gun and shoot a man he had never met for no reason at all..”
• Biden’s Latest JFK Document Dump Is A JOKE (OffG)
Waiting for a government – any government – to release their “secret” files is a waste of your time, and reading anything they eventually publish is doubly so. If you didn’t learn that from the nothing-burger that was the 28 pages on 9/11, or the pathetic exercise in revisionism that made up the Afghanistan Papers…you should definitely have learned it today. Yes, Joe Biden’s administration has just released their promised “secret” JFK papers. Turns out that Oswald acted alone. I know, I was shocked too. Further, the release dials back on the (very slight) anti-Russia messaging of last year’s release. In December 2021, the previous batch of “secret” files revealed Oswald met with a KGB agent in the days running up to the assassination.
The latest batch reassures us that Oswald never worked for the KGB, and that the Russians thought he was “too crazy” to recruit. One gets the impression that has as much to do with managing propaganda positioning over the war in Ukraine as anything else. Either way, its a ridiculously transparent attempt to reinforce the “lone wolf” lie. “He was too crazy and unstable even for the Russians!” Laughable. Further, one particular “secret” memo claims… the Central Intelligence Agency has no indication that Ruby and Lee Harvey Oswald ever knew each other, were associated, or might have been connected in any manner”. Yes, before Jack Ruby killed Lee Harvey Oswald they were apparently “not connected in any manner”. He had never met Oswald before the assassination, and barely had any idea who he was when he shot him on November 24th.
This means the current “official story” is that Ruby randomly chose to attend the press conference where Oswald spoke on the evening of November 22nd, despite not being a member of the press. During this press conference, Ruby correctly pointed out Oswald had joined the “fair play for Cuba committee” (presumably an inspired guess, seeing as they did not know one another). Then, two days later and on a complete whim, he decided to sneak back into the police station carrying a gun and shoot a man he had never met for no reason at all, in the parking lot of a police station, while surrounded by police officers. That’s what these “secret files” tell us…the same ridiculous story as the very unsecret Warren Commission.
While we have been talking about bloodclots fior at least two years, the FDA only just discovered them. But: “..still under investigation and require more robust study.”
This costs lives.
• Pfizer’s COVID-19 Vaccine Linked to Blood Clotting: FDA (ET)
Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine has been linked to blood clotting in older individuals, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). FDA researchers, crunching data from a database of elderly persons in the United States, found that pulmonary embolism—blood clotting in the lungs—met the initial threshold for a statistical signal and continued meeting the criteria after a more in-depth evaluation. Three other outcomes of interest—a lack of oxygen to the heart, a blood platelet disorder called immune thrombocytopenia, and another type of clotting called intravascular coagulation—initially raised red flags, researchers said. More in-depth evaluations, such as comparisons with populations who received influenza vaccines, showed those three as no longer meeting the statistical threshold for a signal.
Researchers looked at data covering 17.4 million elderly Americans who received a total of 34.6 million vaccine doses between Dec. 10, 2020, and Jan. 16, 2022. The study was published by the journal Vaccine on Dec. 1. The FDA said it was not taking any action on the results because they do not prove the vaccines cause any of the four outcomes, and because the findings “are still under investigation and require more robust study.” Dr. Peter McCullough, chief medical adviser for the Truth for Health Foundation, told The Epoch Times via email that the new paper “corroborates the concerns of doctors that the large uptick in blood clots, progression of atherosclerotic heart disease, and blood disorders is independently associated with COVID-19 vaccination.”
“The FDA said it was not taking any action based on the study because the findings do not prove the vaccines cause any of the four outcomes.”
• FDA Uncovers Yet Another Dangerous Side Effect of the Covid-19 ‘Vaccines’ (KB)
A recent study drawing on over thirty million datapoints from the the US Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) data system shows a heightened risk of pulmonary embolism, as well as the known elevated risk for myocarditis. “We evaluated 14 outcomes of interest following COVID-19 vaccination using the US Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) data covering 30,712,101 elderly persons,” the international study in the journal Elsevier stated. “The CMS data from December 11, 2020 through Jan 15, 2022 included 17,411,342 COVID-19 vaccinees who received a total of 34,639,937 doses. We conducted weekly sequential testing and generated rate ratios (RR) of observed outcome rates compared to historical (or expected) rates prior to COVID-19 vaccination.”
The findings supply yet more evidence that the Covid mRNA shots should not be recommended without the standard risks of serious side effects. “Four outcomes met the threshold for a statistical signal following BNT162b2 vaccination including pulmonary embolism (PE; RR = 1.54), acute myocardial infarction (AMI; RR = 1.42), disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC; RR = 1.91), and immune thrombocytopenia (ITP; RR = 1.44),” the study found. The term RR [Risk Ratio] is an expression of the relative risk of the pharmaceutical product versus a placebo. An RR of 1.5 represents a 50% heightened risk for the given side effect.
The study couches the findings in the typical manner: Claiming that the benefits of the ‘vaccines’ outweigh the ‘risks.’ However, that would only be clearly the case if a patient did not have natural antibodies and was at increased due to risk factors such as age, obesity, or immunocompromisation. Seroprevalence data show that nearly every American in the United States has been exposed to SARS-CoV-2. The FDA said it was not taking any action based on the study because the findings do not prove the vaccines cause any of the four outcomes. The FDA claimed the findings “are still under investigation and require more robust study.”
Musk has shaken the tree pretty hard. It’s now up to the rest of us.
• TWITTER FILES Supplemental (Taibbi)
On Friday, I posted a series of exchanges between Twitter and the FBI. One that required a bit too much explaining was left out. But it’s an important document, because it clearly demonstrates that Twitter will not only take requests from the government, it will even act quickly to align its analyses with its “partners.” 2. In July of 2020, San Francisco FBI agent Elvis Chan tells Twitter executive Yoel Roth to expect written questions from the Foreign Influence Task Force (FITF), the inter-agency group that deals with cyber threats. 3.The questionnaire authors seem displeased with Twitter for implying, in a July 20th “DHS/ODNI/FBI/Industry briefing,” that “you indicated you had not observed much recent activity from official propaganda actors on your platform.”
4 .One would think that would be good news. The agencies seemed to feel otherwise. 5.Chan underscored this: “There was quite a bit of discussion within the USIC to get clarifications from your company,” he wrote, referring to the United States Intelligence Community. 6.The task force demanded to know how Twitter came to its unpopular conclusion. Oddly, it included a bibliography of public sources – including a Wall Street Journal article – attesting to the prevalence of foreign threats, as if to show Twitter they got it wrong. 7.Roth, receiving the questions, circulated them with other company executives, and complained that he was “frankly perplexed by the requests here, which seem more like something we’d get from a congressional committee than the Bureau.” 8.He added he was not “comfortable with the Bureau (and by extension the IC) demanding written answers.”
The idea of the FBI acting as conduit for the Intelligence Community is interesting, given that many agencies are barred from domestic operations. 9. He then sent another note internally, saying the premise of the questions was “flawed,” because “we’ve been clear that official state propaganda is definitely a thing on Twitter.” Note the italics for emphasis.10. Roth suggested they “get on the phone with Elvis ASAP and try to straighten this out,” to disabuse the agencies of any notion that state propaganda is not a “thing” on Twitter. 11. This exchange is odd among other things because some of the “bibliography” materials cited by the FITF are sourced to intelligence officials, who in turn cited the public sources. 12. The FBI responded to Friday’s report by saying it “regularly engages with private sector entities to provide information specific to identified foreign malign influence actors’ subversive, undeclared, covert, or criminal activities.”
”..the question is finding a CEO who can keep Twitter alive.”
• Musk Asks Twitter If He Should Step Down (ZH)
Elon Musk, perhaps finally fed up with micromanaging twitter or just really drunk after partying with Qatari royals (and Jared) after today’s terrific World Cup Final… … has asked Twitter users and his 122 million followers whether he should step down as head of the social media site and pledged that he would abide by the result of the 12 hour unscientific poll. Four hours into the vote, with some 9 million votes cast, 56.7% of those polled said Musk should, in fact, stand down. It wasn’t clear what percentage of bots of mailed in ballots had been cast. Musk prefaced the vote by tweeting that “Going forward, there will be a vote for major policy changes. My apologies. Won’t happen again.”
Subsequently, in response to tweeted comments that Musk should “hire someone as Twitter CEO… that way when things go wrong you can blame that person, but you still ultimate control as the owner”, the billionaire responded that “The question is not finding a CEO, the question is finding a CEO who can keep Twitter alive.” Musk also clarified to prospective replacements that any new CEO “must like pain a lot. One catch: you have to invest your life savings in Twitter and it has been in the fast lane to bankruptcy since May. Still want the job?” Musk then stated that the whole exercise is a Catch 22 as “No one wants the job who can actually keep Twitter alive. There is no successor.” Which then begs the question how Musk will abide by a poll that seeks his replacement if there is “no successor” in mind.
He then doubled down by paraphrasing Jack Handey and, of course, Gladiator:
Those who want power are the ones who least deserve it
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 19, 2022
Whether Musk was drunk or not when he sent out the tweet (early am Qatari time), the outcome as some cynics have noted, is unlikely to have any material impact on what happens at twitter. Musk’s pledge to hold votes on policy changes came after Twitter on Sunday announced it will remove accounts “created solely” to promote other social media platforms. Accounts promoting rivals and containing links to sites such as Facebook, Instagram and Mastodon will be taken down, the company said. A few hours later the tweet revealing that policy change was deleted.
“When decisions were being made in 2020 and imposed upon the public, that’s when censorship counted the most..”
• Twitter Censorship Contributed to Destructive Pandemic Policies (ET)
The recently revealed censorship that has plagued Twitter in recent years is “criminal,” according to former White House COVID adviser Dr. Scott Atlas, as it allowed “lies to be imposed on the public” during a pandemic that wrought untold damage worldwide. “When correct science policy is blocked, people die, and people died from the censorship,” Atlas, a special coronavirus adviser during the Trump administration and contributor to The Epoch Times, said in an interview. Atlas was speaking days after Elon Musk, the new owner of Twitter, released troves of internal files showing how the previous Twitter team built a blacklist to limit disfavored tweets’ visibility without the knowledge of those using the platform.
Among those flagged was Dr. Jay Bhattacharya of Stanford, whose tweet criticizing pandemic lockdowns shortly after joining the platform last August got him on the “trends blacklist” preventing the amplification of his tweets. But such revelations, Atlas said, are “only the tip of the iceberg.” “There’s a far larger story here that we need to hear,” he said, which he considers “far more nefarious and more systemic than isolated tweets being pulled down.” “This seems to be criminal behavior, and I think it needs to be investigated in the courts,” he said. Atlas wants to direct attention back to 2020, when health officials followed in the Chinese Communist Party’s footsteps to implement blanket COVID-19 lockdowns. In November of that year, while Atlas was still on the White House’s coronavirus task force, Twitter took down his post that argued mask-wearing was not effective in curbing the spread of the virus—a decision celebrated by some proponents of the measures, including fellow task force member Dr. Deborah Birx.
“One would think that the American public should hear what the adviser to the president is saying during the pandemic of 2020. Yet Twitter decided to simply block that discussion from the public,” he said. [..] Despite most states having a mask mandate until early this year, a number of studies found children and teenagers to be at a far lower risk of getting or dying from COVID-19, even with the emergence of new variants. But the “censorship of 2020,” be it deleting individual tweets, suspending accounts, or blocking the amplification of posts, had done its damage. “When decisions were being made in 2020 and imposed upon the public, that’s when censorship counted the most,” Atlas said.
“It created this illusion that there was a consensus among science and public health policy experts that lockdowns should be imposed; it created and perpetrated lies that if you were opposed to lockdowns, you were choosing the economy over lives, and that if you were opposed to lockdowns, you were somehow calling for letting the infection spread without any mitigation whatsoever,” he said. “They absolutely contributed to policies that killed massive numbers of people and destroyed children and low-income people, who are the most vulnerable. That’s why it’s criminal.”
They will lose their powers when the new Congress is installed.
• Democratic Members Warn Facebook Not to “Backslide” on Censorship (Turley)
With the restoration of free speech protections on Twitter, panic has grown on the left that its control over social media could come to an end. Now, some of the greatest advocates of censorship in Congress are specifically warning Facebook not to follow Twitter in restoring free speech to its platform. In a chilling letter from Reps. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), André Carson (D-Ind.), Kathy Castor (D-Fla.) and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Facebook was given a not-so-subtle threat that reducing its infamous censorship system will invite congressional action. The letter to Meta’s president of global affairs, Nick Clegg, is written on congressional stationery “as part of our ongoing oversight efforts.”
With House Republicans pledging to investigate social media censorship when they take control in January, these four Democratic members are trying to force Facebook to “recommit” to censoring opposing views and to make election censorship policies permanent. Otherwise, they suggest, they may be forced to exercise oversight into any move by Facebook to “alter or rollback certain misinformation policies.” In addition to demanding that Facebook preserve its bans on figures like former president Donald Trump, they want Facebook to expand its censorship overall because “unlike other major social media platforms, Meta’s policies do not prohibit posts that make unsubstantiated claims about voter fraud.”
Clegg is given Schiff’s telephone number to discuss Facebook’s compliance — an ironic contact point for a letter on censoring “disinformation.” After all, Schiff was one of the members of Congress who, before the 2020 presidential election, pushed the false claim that the Hunter Biden laptop was Russian disinformation, and he has been criticized for pushing false narratives on Trump-Russia collusion in the 2016 election. (Schiff has previously pressured social media companies to expand the censorship of opposing views).
“Dangerous and unfounded election denial content” must be kept off the platform…”
• Democrats Like Adam Schiff Are Scrambling To Save Censorship (Devine)
Adam Schiff popped up on CNN’s “State of The Union” show Sunday morning to issue barely veiled threats to Elon Musk for trying to restore free speech on Twitter. Ostensibly, the lame duck chairman of the House Intelligence Committee joined Jake Tapper to crow about expected charges against Donald Trump Monday from his January 6 star chamber. But Schiff moved on to complain about the “big problem right now with social media companies and their failure to moderate content and the explosion of hate on Twitter, the banning of journalists on Twitter.” Then he suggested ominously that Twitter and social media companies may not continue to enjoy “immunity from responsibility and liability.” In other words, keep policing free speech as an arm of the federal government or watch your business go up in smoke.
Schiff is a calculated propagandist, who lies under oath as easily as breathing, and knowingly peddles misinformation to Congress and to media outlets like CNN and MSNBC, whose gullible hosts keep bringing him back on their shows to mislead their audiences. In the dying days of his powerful reign as overseer of the nation’s intelligence agencies, abusing his access to the nation’s secrets, Schiff’s final assignment is to preserve the censorship regime his side of politics entrenched across Big Tech. On Tuesday he, and three other Dems he roped in, wrote a menacing letter “as part of our ongoing oversight efforts” to Nick Clegg, president of global affairs at Meta (Facebook’s new name), warning that, if the company went down Twitter’s path of free speech, the consequences would be dire. “Dangerous and unfounded election denial content” must be kept off the platform.
This is not 2 or 3 years ago, this is now
There’s evidence Donald Trump committed criminal offenses in his effort to overturn the 2020 election.
He tried to interfere with a joint session.
Pressed officials to find votes that didn’t exist.
And set a bloodthirsty mob on the Capitol.
If that’s not criminal, nothing is. pic.twitter.com/TSjLX3l0Up
— Adam Schiff (@RepAdamSchiff) December 18, 2022
“That is a far cry from overthrowing the U.S. government by force of violence.”
“‘Absurd’ To Call Oath Keepers Insurrectionists Or A National Security Threat, Former FBI Agent Testifies”
• Former FBI Agent Calls Assertion Oath Keepers are Anti-Government ‘Absurd’ (ET)
The Oath Keepers did not try to overthrow the U.S. government on Jan. 6 and are not a threat to national security because the group is anti-tyranny, not anti-government, a former FBI agent and Department of Defense analyst testified Dec. 15-16 in Alaska Superior Court. John Guandolo, who handled counter-terrorism and criminal investigations during nearly 13 years as an FBI special agent, said he found “absurd” the idea that Oath Keepers tried to overthrow the federal government. Guandolo was at the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, in a personal capacity. Some of the Oath Keepers might have broken federal laws on Jan. 6 for allegedly trying to delay the counting of Electoral College votes, Guandolo said, “but to conflate that to being the same as the entire organization wants to overthrow the U.S. government by violence … that’s absurd,” Guandolo said.
“And I think it’s an unprofessional assessment.” Guandolo’s testimony came on the third and fourth days of a state trial to determine if Rep. David Eastman (R-Wasilla) should be removed from office under the Alaska Constitution because he is a life member of the Oath Keepers. Eastman won reelection on Nov. 8 by a 24-point margin. Alaska Superior Court Judge Jack McKenna issued a temporary restraining order preventing the state of Alaska from certifying the House 27th District election results until the trial ends. Former GOP candidate Randall Kowalke—who left the Republican Party in 2019—sued Eastman personally in July, claiming a loyalty clause in the Alaska Constitution should bar him from office because the Oath Keepers allegedly advocate for the overthrow of the federal government.
Earlier in the bench trial before McKenna, two analysts from centers on domestic extremism testified that the Oath Keepers went into the Capitol on Jan. 6 and tried to overthrow the government. Testifying from his office in Dallas, Guandolo told the judge there is no evidence to support that accusation. He ripped the testimony of analysts Jonathan Lewis and Matthew Kriner as “grossly incomplete” and “wholly unprofessional.” Oath Keepers founder Elmer Stewart Rhodes III and Oath Keepers Florida leader Kelly Meggs were found guilty of seditious conspiracy on Nov. 29 for actions on Jan. 6, in a jury trial in U.S. District Court in Washington. Four other defendants were acquitted of seditious conspiracy, but convicted of other offenses.
“The phrase that I saw most often [in indictments] was that so-and-so intended to affect the government by stopping or delaying the congressional proceeding, which was to certify the election,” Guandolo said when questioned by defense attorney Joseph Miller. “That is a far cry from overthrowing the U.S. government by force of violence.”
“$300 trillion of global debt and $2 quadrillion of quasi debt in the form of derivatives can only end in currencies going to zero..”
• US Doublespeak Will Not Stop Gold’s Imminent Surge (Von Greyerz)
The clouds look extremely dark for 2023 and beyond. As I have pointed out above, there is no attempt to reach a peace settlement in Ukraine. Weapons and money are pouring in to keep the war going. And the sanctions forced upon Europe by the US are having a devastating effect for the citizens of most European countries. Energy costs are up 2-3X or more for many consumers and food inflation in Germany for example jumped 21% year on year in November. In the UK, many ordinary people cannot afford to keep their heating on or to eat properly. And this is before the cold winter sets in. The situation in Ukraine seems to deteriorate and with Russia and the US involved, as well as China in the periphery, it could easily escalate.
But as I have spelt out numerous times, $300 trillion of global debt and $2 quadrillion of quasi debt in the form of derivatives can only end in currencies going to zero and sovereign borrowers defaulting. A global sovereign default should be seen as an indisputable fact and it is only a question of how long it takes. These events are normally a process. As Hemingway said, you go bankrupt “Gradually and then suddenly”. The beginning can be a slow process and then at some point the shock comes so fast that no one will have time to react. So no-one must believe that there will be time to get out once the early “gradual” phase starts. Just to be clear, the gradual phase is here already although the world is in denial. The buy the dip mentality is still prevailing as evidenced by the partial recovery in stock markets.
Few realise that this is it and the next devastating fall in stocks is going to fool practically all investors. The majority will not get out but hope for a correction so they can exit at a higher level. And once the correction comes, they will be bullish again. Once everyone is back into the market it will fall again. Most of the investors will be fooled most of the time until their portfolio is virtually worthless. The Western world hasn’t experienced a real bear market since 1929-32. That time it took 25 years for the Dow to recover to the 1929 high. The generosity of Central banks has made stock investments a one way game since the early 1980s. But now the game is up and few will realise it until they have lost everything. So the “suddenly” will be like an earthquake seemingly coming out of nowhere. It can come in 2023 or it might take a few years.
The new trailer for Christopher Nolan’s
“They won’t fear it until they understand it. And they won’t understand it until they’ve used it.”
— Michael Warburton (@MichaelWarbur17) December 19, 2022
Boys keep swinging
Support the Automatic Earth in virustime with Paypal, Bitcoin and Patreon.
Home › Forums › Debt Rattle December 19 2022