Debt Rattle May 6 2022


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    Observing what Russia is doing in the Ukraine reminds me of what Russia did in Syria.

    Russia has put pressure on only certain parts of the Ukraine. This has forced the Ukraine to defend it’s major cities at the expense of supporting the eastern Donbas front. Russia has left the route open for the Ukrainians and Nato to try and reinforce the Donbas front. Russia has shaped the battlefield. It has done all of this using a smaller attacking force.

    In the early first phase, Russia took calculated risks in moving quickly with light mobile forces. This move exposed these mobile forces to higher levels of casualties. Now in the second phase, Russia has consolidated and secured it’s gains and moved to greatly reduce the risks it’s attacking forces are now exposed to.

    Now it is the fixed Ukrainian Donbas forces that are badly exposed, trapped in their very own fortified positions, just like the neo-nazis in Mariupol’s steel plant tunnels. Being sitting ducks without air cover is not a very good situation to be stuck in. Using long range artillery, the Russians can now minimize their risks while exponentially increasing risks for the Ukrainians. Grinding is slow but deadly.

    So far Russia has refused to be baited by the US into widening the war, despite numerous provocations. Russia is only using a small fraction of it’s professional army in the Ukraine.
    The bulk of it’s forces are sitting ready to engage Nato.
    Russia is the turtle. The US is the hare.
    The turtle is winning in Syria.
    I sometimes think Russia is baiting the US instead.


    @Mr House re:

    Question: Has anyone noticed differences in gas prices? When i was growing up gas was always, always more expensive in the city. Nothing huge but it was always five to ten cents cheaper in the rural areas but in the last few years i’ve noticed the opposite. Anybody have any ideas as to why the change?

    From a strictly California perspective, I’ve seen it as a ‘where you can’ spectrum of wallet rape. In places where serious work gets done using hydrocarbons, it’s usually the cheapest. Truckers’ towns like Mojave (CA-14/CA-58) or Visalia (CA-99/CA-198) are cheap-to-mid $ for low-to-hi pop density. Mojave is raw desert, so only shipping/tourist. Visalia is agriculture-heavy, more trucks, variety of other diesel machines. I haven’t been in a few years, but I’m sure in places like San Rafael, Petaluma, it’s probably $6.50+, less than 30km from the Chevron refineries in Richmond.

    Low-mid class suburbs is the average (I’m in Northridge, currently ~$5.50/gal of 89). Tourist towns/traps (Fish Camp, south gate of Yosemite, ~$7.00), upscale urban areas (Beverly Hills, ~$6.75) are highest. Between my area and ‘fancy town’ (Beverly/WeHo) there has been, historically, a $1.00 gap. Likewise, a $1.00 gap the other way when compared to Palmdale/Lancaster (possible ‘mil warp’ of price from nearby AFB). These gaps are shrinking or are gone in many places, but Bev/WeHo is the center of a money vortex, so they can afford to ‘compete at the pump’ also.

    EDIT: Adding…diesel was always ~15% cheaper everywhere.


    The money is not going to the same place as the guns that came out of inventory.



    Yeah, it is called corruption!

    John Day

    Re: American fuel prices in Texas:
    I’m seeing regular gas for $3.69/gal @ Costco ,$3.89 as a common better-price and up to $3.99 (psychological limit?)
    Diesel runs about $1 more than gasoline here.
    Prices are all up and down from day to day, and the lowest one daymay be the higher of the 4 I watch closely on another day.
    Costco is never highest (and not always lowest).

    Mr. House


    No need to apologize my good man, i’m just trying to figure out why things are different all of a sudden. Just another conspiracy in my mind 😉


    Just got back from doing groceries. Everywhere, I’ve noticed that the cashier must be forced to ask everyone, “Would you like to make a donation to …..”.
    Now, I just answer, “I’ve already donated.” (to the oil Co.)


    Gas Price War:

    It would appear that the deranged psychopath that controls gas prices is still alive and well!
    I remember noticing “it” way back in the 1960s, well before I could drive!
    Prices always rose before long weekends.
    “It” always raised gas prices when your tank was running on empty!
    “It” always lowered gas prices when your tank was full!
    No matter how hard you tried to out smart “it”, “it” always out smarted you!


    One little interesting tidbit I read, if true, said the Canadian General was caught in a sewer pipe trying to escape from the Mariupol steel plant while the first hostages were being released. I guess not even a sewer rat, never mind a fly, can escape!

    Figmund Sreud

    Oh, those crazy car prices!

    At the end of June ‘19, my son purchased a new Toyota RAV-4, “Trail” model with only option, colour: “lunar rock with ice edge roof”. He paid C$40,018.- all included, drive out price.

    Toyota advertised MSRP at that time was C$8,982.80 + C$1,840.- shipping charge + C$540 (not lunar rock, since no longer available).

    Yesterday, we drove by near nearby Honda dealer ( ) and noticed a same colour car, which turned out to be ‘20 model with ~47,000 km on its odometer. Asking price was C$47,999.99, … plus taxes (5%), documentation, dealers fees – all unspecified.

    Curious enough, we made and inquiry, … and we found out that the dealer is taking offers on that car, and there are already few offers over the asking price, … and the bidding ends Friday at closing time!

    Anyway, needless to say, we were just curious, … and that car just disappeared from the lot right this evening. Gone! No idea what the final price was. But at the Toyota dealer my son bought his ‘19 car, one can buy the same ‘22 model for C$39,778.- plus 5% sales tax, with promised delivery in not later than 4 months from order date.

    Un-phlunkin’-believable what one has to pay if one needs a good, used car right away!

    … fwiw,


    Figmund Sreud

    … er, C$38,982.80



    One of the dilemmas of the current world is that several world leaders, while certain of their rectitude, could be viewed as making fools of themselves and their countries.
    The media are largely participants in promoting this propaganda, presenting themselves as purveyors of truth and counters to disinformation – a touch of arrogance and ignorance to my mind.
    Countering this is difficult because access to the media and debate are largely denied, except for a few sites such as this, which only slowly percolate through to a wider audience.
    My idea for a counter attack is not to focus on detailed figures, arguments, and research reviews which are not very productive at changing what are in effect emotionally held beliefs eg Russia bad USA good.
    What may penetrate are brief say aphorisms, easily adopted, and which expose these positions to ridicule.
    What we have here in NZ are a series of billboards sponsored by a brewery, taking the form of atatement followed by Yeah right, conveying pull the other one.
    Thus we get “Safe and effective. Yeah right.”
    Where Britain goes we go. Yeah right.
    We have nuclear shelters. Yeah right.
    US & US yeah right.
    Go WWW3 yeah right
    Boris and Joe. Yeah right
    Ministry of Truth. Yeah right.
    I suggest bumper stickers. Not that I have any experience in that field or idea of costs. Sure, coverage and impact would be limited, but it might be a start.

    Dr D Rich

    As to any question who is in charge and running the show.
    Yesterday we had Bill Burns CIA Director executing foreign affairs instead of the Secretary of State.
    Today, whether true or not, Israel extracted an apology from Vladimir Putin, deserved or not.

    Israel is always the belle at ball.

    those darned kids

    The unwanted child that learns why to survive,
    Despite the whole family- outside of the hive-
    Sees things the beloved ones cannot perceive-
    Knows what to reject, and learns what to believe.

    So a child that escapes the abortionist’s knife
    And survives all the misery that comes from that life
    May- maybe- just maybe- grow wise and do well:
    Well enough to build lifeboats to save some from hell.

    I’m not just sun-smacked, I’m a bit sweet on some wine. It was the first beautiful day in ages.

    D Benton Smith


    Tacking the sardonic additive comment of , “Yeah, right” onto the tail end of the obvious bullshit lies is a brilliant idea, for all of the reasons you stated, and I intend to take your advice and do just that at every opportunity.

    Thank you for that, and keep ideas like that coming. We can use the assistance.

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