Aug 212022
 
 August 21, 2022  Posted by at 9:00 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  58 Responses »


Giambologna Colossus of the Apennines 1579-80 (35ft tall)

 

Car Blast Kills Daughter Of Russian Philosopher Dugin (RT)
Modern Empires Keep Taking What They Want From ‘Lesser’ Powers (Kovalik)
Russian Soldiers In Ukraine Hospitalized With Severe Chemical Poisoning (RT)
Two Lives: Victoria and Victorine (Batiushka)
Russia Continues To Stockpile Forex Reserves (RT)
UN Recruited Over 100,000 Digital First Responders to Push COVID Narrative (SN)
Houston, We Have a Problem – Part 1 of 3 (Ethical Skeptic)
Insufficient Vitamin D Linked To Fourfold Increase In Covid-19 Mortality (IT)
China Backs African Union Bid To Join The Group of 20 (SCMP)
Chinese Ambassador Outlines BRICS Vision (RT)
Millions Could Be Left Without Heat And Food In Winter, London Mayor Warns (RT)
Just How Bad Could Things Get This Winter? (RT)
Swiss Revolt Warning Issued (RT)
Amish Farmer Fighting US Government For Right To Sell His All-natural Food (RN)
Dutch Farmers Confront Billionaire ‘Green’ Elite’s Food System Reset Plan (GZ)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Biden’s bribe tapes

 

 

 

 

 

 

Too early to say if the father was the intended target. But Putin can’t let cars be blown up near Moscow. He has to act.

Car Blast Kills Daughter Of Russian Philosopher Dugin (RT)

A powerful explosion ripped apart an SUV near Moscow on Saturday night, instantly killing its driver. According to preliminary reports, the victim was identified as Darya Dugina, the daughter of a veteran Russian political commentator Alexander Dugin, who is often painted in the West as one of the Kremlin’s “ideological masterminds.” The incident took place on a highway some 20 kilometers west of Moscow around 21:35 local time, with witnesses saying that the blast rocked the vehicle right in the middle of the road, scattering debris all around. The crippled car, fully engulfed in flames, then crashed into a fence, according to photos and videos from the scene. Emergency services said one person was inside the car and was instantly killed by the blast and crash – a female whose body was reportedly recovered burned beyond recognition.

Authorities have yet to officially confirm the identity of the victim, but multiple Russian Telegram channels and media sources reported that the victim was 30-year-old Darya Dugina (Platonova). Her father, Alexander Dugin, was spotted at the scene soon after the incident, visibly shocked, according to several videos circulating on social media. Preliminary reports suggested that a home-made explosive device might have been involved, but investigators have yet to confirm the cause of the blast, or any possible motive in case of a foul play. Earlier on Saturday evening, Aleksandr Dugin was giving a lecture on “Tradition and History”at a traditional family festival in the Moscow region, while his daughter attended the event as a guest. Some unconfirmed reports suggested that Dugin initially planned to leave the festival alongside his daughter, but later decided to take a separate car, while Darya took his Toyota Land Cruiser Prado.

Darya Dugina was a political commentator and daughter of Professor Aleksandr Dugin – a veteran Russian philosopher known for his staunch anti-Western and “neo-Eurasian” views. Western media repeatedly painted Dugin as one of the driving forces behind President Vladimir Putin’s foreign policy over the past decade. Just in recent months, CBS dubbed him “the far-right theorist behind Putin’s plan,” while the Washington Post called him a “far-right mystical writer who helped shape Putin’s view of Russia.” n Russia, however, the supposed shadowy puppet master is largely considered to be a relatively marginal figure with some of his views deemed controversial even in nationalist circles. While he has served as an adviser to several politicians, Dugin never enjoyed official endorsement from the Kremlin.

Dugina

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“A child asks his parent, “Why are there pyramids in Egypt?” The parent answers, “Because they were too big to take to Britain.“

Modern Empires Keep Taking What They Want From ‘Lesser’ Powers (Kovalik)

There is an old joke which still has resonance. A child asks his parent, “Why are there pyramids in Egypt?” The parent answers, “Because they were too big to take to Britain.” Of course, many a true word is spoken in jest. Indeed, there is an apocryphal story that back in the day when Vladimir Lenin was in exile in London, he would enjoy taking friends to the British Museum and explaining to them how and from what far-flung lands all the antiquities there were stolen. One might have thought that these days of colonial plunder had ended, but one would be very wrong. Current examples abound. A notable one is, of course, the freezing by the US of $7 billion from the Afghanistan treasury – monies the US continues to hold even as it watches Afghans begin to die from starvation.

Apparently, the US believes that, after laying waste to Afghanistan through 20 years of war and, even before that by supporting the mujahideen terrorists, it is entitled to some compensation. This upside-down type of reasoning abounds in the minds of those in the West who simply believe they can take whatever they wish. Similarly, the US is now plundering Syria – another country utterly devastated in no small part by Washington-backed militants in a campaign to overthrow the elected president – of most of its oil, even as Syria suffers from severe energy blackouts. Thus, according to the Syrian Oil Ministry, “US occupation forces and their mercenaries,” referring to the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), “steal up to 66,000 barrels every single day from the fields occupied in the eastern region,” amounting to around 83 percent of Syria’s daily oil production.

According to the ministry’s data, the Syrian oil sector has incurred losses of “about $105 billion since the beginning of the war until the middle of this year” as a result of the US oil theft campaign. Additionally, the statement added that alongside the financial losses incurred by the oil sector were “losses of life, including 235 martyrs, 46 injured and 112 kidnapped.” One of the biggest heists the US has carried out is against Russia. After the launch of Russia’s military operation in Ukraine, the US seized an incredible $300 billion of Russian treasury funds which were deposited abroad. This was done, of course, without any due process, and to the great detriment of the Russian people – and with barely a critical word from Western pundits.

The US treatment of Venezuela abounds with other examples. As I write these words, the US is maneuvering to seize a commercial 747 airliner from Venezuela on the grounds that it once belonged to an Iranian airline which had some connection to Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps (which Washington has designated as terrorists) – which might sound like a tenuous justification, but the US really needs no reason. And this is simply the tip of the iceberg. The US has already seized Venezuela’s biggest single source of revenue – its US-based oil company CITGO – and is now in the process of selling off this company in pieces, even as Washington lifts restrictions on Venezuelan oil to shore up its own economy. The UK, meanwhile, has decided to keep over $1 billion in gold which Venezuela naively deposited in the Bank of England for safe-keeping. To add insult to injury, the US continues to criticize Venezuela for the hardships its people endure as a direct consequence of this plunder.

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Botulinum toxin.

Russian Soldiers In Ukraine Hospitalized With Severe Chemical Poisoning (RT)

Several Russian soldiers involved in the military operation in Ukraine have been hospitalized with severe chemical poisoning, the Russian Defense Ministry said on Saturday. Traces of Botulinum toxin Type B, which is an “organic poison of artificial origin,” have been discovered in samples taken from the servicemen, the ministry said, accusing Kiev of “chemical terrorism.” The Russian troops were “hospitalized with signs of severe poisoning” after being stationed near the village of Vasilyevka in Zaporozhye Region on July 31, the statement said. “The Zelensky regime has authorized terrorist attacks with the use of toxic substances against Russian personnel and civilians” following a string of military defeats in Donbass and other areas, the ministry insisted.


Moscow plans to send laboratory tests from the soldiers to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW). Botulinum toxin, often called the “miracle poison,” is one of the most toxic biological substances known to science. Produced by the Clostridium botulinum bacteria, it blocks the release of the acetylcholine neurotransmitter, causing muscle paralysis. Botulinum toxin Type A has been used in medicine in small doses in recent decades, especially to treat disorders characterized by overactive muscle movement. It’s also well known in cosmetology under its shortened name, Botox. However, Botulinum toxin poses a major threat as a bioweapon due its ease of production and distribution, and the high fatality rate resulting from poisoning. Recovery is only possible after a lengthy period of intensive care.

Donbass residents

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“How does she sleep at night?”

Two Lives: Victoria and Victorine (Batiushka)

Victoria Jane Nuland was born in 1961 to Sherwin Nudelman, the son of Ukrainian Jewish immigrants, and a British-born mother, Rhona Goulston. Already in his teens Nudelman had changed his name to Nuland in order to carve out a career. With the British-named Victoria, an Anglo-Zionist was clearly in the making. Indeed, she duly studied at an elite private boarding school in Connecticut, whose alumni include many US politicians. Then she went to Brown University, where she studied Russian literature, political science and history. She married Robert Kagan, the future leading Jewish neocon. Her worldview relects exactly the folly of the US since 1990 under the influence of the neo-imperialist neocons and Blairite-Clintonian ‘liberal interventionists’.

This has resulted in mass poverty in the USA, as well as 9/11, and millions of deaths in wars and tensions outside the US with the Islamic world, Iran, Russia, China and anyone else that resists US imperialism. From 2003 to 2005, during the US rape of defenceless Iraq and the theft of its oil and gas, Mrs Kagan was a foreign policy advisor to the notorious Cheney. She must have many deaths on her conscience from that particular mess. The Iraq catastrophe led to terrorism and counterterrorism and disastrous new wars in Libya and Syria. Meanwhile, her husband was demanding an ever more warlike foreign policy against the background of US fears of the coming multipolar world, a world which it would no longer be able to dominate.

So Mrs Kagan, who yearned for permanent NATO expansion and the encirclement of Russia, was deeply involved in the US ‘regime-change’, that is, the plot to overthrow Ukraine’s democratically-elected government by violence in 2014. This led to America’s responsibility for the ensuing civil war that had killed at least 14,000 people, women and children among them, even before 24 February 2022 and had left Ukraine the poorest country in Europe. Her $5 billion coup in 2014 in the wretched Ukraine, a strategic candidate for NATO on Russia’s border, was implemented through Oleh Tyahnybok’s neo-Nazi Svoboda Party and the new Right Sector militia. We do not forget that it was Tyanhnybok who had delivered a speech praising Ukrainians for fighting Jews and ‘other scum’ during World War II.

In February 2014 their protests in Kyiv’s Maidan Square turned into running battles led by neo-Nazis and extreme right-wing forces that the US had financed and orchestrated. A mob led by the Right Sector militia marched on Parliament and the President and others fled for their lives. Facing the possible loss of its naval base in Sevastopol in the Crimea, Russia accepted the overwhelming result (a 97% majority) of an internationally-observed referendum in which Crimea voted to leave the Ukraine and rejoin Russia, of which it had been a part from 1783 to 1954. The Russian provinces of Donetsk and Luhansk in eastern Ukraine, part of Russia until the terrorist Communists had given them away to the Ukraine in 1922, similarly declared independence from Neo-Nazi Kiev. This starting a bloody war between US-backed separatists in Kiev and the local Eastern Ukrainian people.

Mrs Kagan wants an ever-more dangerous War with Russia and China to justify her militarist foreign policy and Pentagon budgets. She relies on her mythical version of Russian aggression and US ‘democratic’ intentions. She claims that Russia’s military budget, one-tenth of that of the US, is proof of ‘Russian confrontation and militarisation’. She wants ‘permanent bases along NATO’s eastern border’ and sees Russia’s desire to defend itself after so many successive (and failed) Western invasions as an obstacle to NATO’s expansionism. In short, the deluded Mrs Kagan has with others unleashed intractable violence, chaos and the risk of nuclear war. How does she sleep at night?

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Feb 2022: $643.2 billion. Half of that was frozen. Now it’s back up to $580.6 billion. In assets that can’t be frozen.

Russia Continues To Stockpile Forex Reserves (RT)

Russia’s international holdings have reached $580.6 billion as of August 12, according to data published by the country’s central bank on Thursday. Moscow has been boosting its reserves as a shield against sanctions. The central bank regularly publishes updates on its reserves with a one-week lag. International reserves consist of foreign-currency funds, special drawing rights with the IMF and monetary gold. Total reserves surged by $5.8 billion from the previous week, the regulator said, noting that the 1% rise was due to a positive market revaluation.


The historical maximum of $643.2 billion was recorded in February 2022. Russia lost access to roughly half of its foreign reserves in early March after they were frozen by Western central banks as part of sanctions introduced by the US and its allies in response to the conflict in Ukraine. Despite this, the Russian Finance Ministry said the country would be able to cope with sanctions thanks to its abundant reserves.

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“..we’ve recruited 110,000 information volunteers..”

UN Recruited Over 100,000 Digital First Responders to Push COVID Narrative (SN)

At the height of the pandemic, the United Nations recruited over 100,000 “digital first responders’ to push the establishment narrative on COVID via social media. The revelation actually slipped out in October 2020 during a World Economic Forum podcast called ‘Seeking a cure for the infodemic’, although it is only going viral on Twitter today. In the podcast, Melissa Fleming, head of global communications for the United Nations, explains how the COVID pandemic and lockdowns created a “communications crisis” in addition to a public health emergency. Fleming acknowledged that in order to fight so-called “misinformation” about the pandemic, the UN tapped up 110,000 people to amplify their messaging across social media.

“So far, we’ve recruited 110,000 information volunteers, and we equip these information volunteers with the kind of knowledge about how misinformation spreads and ask them to serve as kind of ‘digital first-responders’ in those spaces where misinformation travels,” Fleming stated. That was nearly 2 years ago. It is not known how many ‘digital first responders’ have been recruited up to this point. Similar efforts to create astroturf campaigns to push a specific message are nothing new, but when entities such as oil companies engage in it, they are lambasted for rigging the discussion. However, when globalist technocrats at the UN or the WEF do it, apparently it’s fine.

Last year, it was revealed that the British government used “propagandistic” fear tactics to scare the public into mass compliance during the first COVID lockdown, according to a behavioral scientist who worked inside Downing Street. Scientists in the UK working as advisors for the government admitted using what they later conceded to be “unethical” and “totalitarian” methods of instilling fear in the population in order to control behavior during the pandemic.

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Epic from The Ethical Skeptic. “The following work is the result of thousands of hours of dynamic data tracking and research..”

Houston, We Have a Problem – Part 1 of 3 (Ethical Skeptic)

Seven of the major eleven International Classification of Diseases codes tracked by the US National Center for Health Statistics exhibit stark increase trends beginning in the first week of April 2021 – featuring exceptional growth more robust than during even the Covid-19 pandemic time frame. This date of inception is no coincidence, in that it also happens to coincide with a key inflection point regarding a specific body-system intervention in most of the US population. These seven pronounced increases in mortality alarmingly persist even now.

The following work is the result of thousands of hours of dynamic data tracking and research on the part of its author. The reader should anticipate herein, a journey which will take them through the methods and metrics which serve to identify this problem, along with a deductive assessment of the candidate causal mechanisms behind it. Alternatives as to cause which include one mechanism in particular, that is embargoed from being allowed as an explanation, nor even mere mention in some forums. At the end of this process, we will be left with one inescapable conclusion. One which threatens the very fabric and future of health policy in the US for decades to come.

On March 21st 2021, a longtime mentor, friend, and business partner of mine, an otherwise healthy 68 year old male, unexpectedly suffered an autoimmune cascade which ended up shutting down his pancreas, liver, kidneys, and finally heart. He had just received his second dose of the Pfizer vaccine on that Thursday prior. Carl quickly descended into a coma, and then died on March 26th.1

On May 29th 2021, a rather odd signal began to develop in my regular Covid-19 tracking models. The change which alerted me resided inside the magnitude of the ‘Symptoms, signs and abnormal clinical and laboratory findings, not elsewhere classified (R00-R99)’ ICD death code group. About this time and as a result of this observation, I began to track R00-R99 deaths, along with eleven other ICD-10 death codes, non-natural cause deaths (suicide, overdose, assault, etc.), and finally a statistic called ‘Excess Non-Covid Natural Cause Deaths’. As the reader reviews the calculated trends featured inside each of these death categorizations, they should note that this was indeed both a prescient and sound decision.

On December 1st of 2021, attending a business meeting at client’s medical complex, passing through the facility I took notice that their large oncology department waiting room was slammed full with patients. This queue of persons awaiting their oncology appointments spilled out into the hallway and finally on into the building atrium.2 While tempted at first blush to pass this off as a result of patients and their physicians ‘catching up on deferred screenings’ and/or ‘Covid-limited office days/hours effect’, my prior observational lessons suggested that I hold-off on such a knee-jerk inference, at least until the CDC – National Center for Health Statistics data (three bullet point sources below) proved out over the coming months. This as well, proved to be a wise decision.

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Is there even one country today with a Vit. D program? This article, too, does not define a satisfactory level. Why is it so hard?

Insufficient Vitamin D Linked To Fourfold Increase In Covid-19 Mortality (IT)

Covid-19 patients with low vitamin D levels are more likely to suffer severe disease and death, according to a study by Irish scientists. Unvaccinated Caucasian adults with low vitamin D have higher mortality due to Sars CoV-2 pneumonia, according to the small-scale study by researchers at Connolly Hospital Blanchardstown and Technological University Dublin. This is not explained by confounders such as age or obesity and is not closely linked to inflammation, they say. Having an insufficient level of vitamin D was associated with a greater than fourfold increased mortality risk, according to the study, published in the journal Nutrients.

The study looked at the outcomes of 232 unvaccinated patients at Connolly hospital, all of whom had Covid-19 and required supplemental oxygen. Patients on steroid treatment were not recruited for the study in order, the authors say, to eliminate the effect their use might have on measures of both vitamin D and inflammation. The mortality rate among patients aged under 70 and who had “insufficient” vitamin D levels (less than 30 nanomoles per litre) was 11.8 per cent, compared to 2.2 per cent who had higher vitamin levels (greater than 30 nanomoles per litre). Among over-70s, the mortality rate for those with insufficient vitamin D levels was 55 per cent, compared to 25 per cent for those with high vitamin D levels.

“Unvaccinated Caucasian adults with a low vitamin D state have higher mortality due to Sars CoV-2 pneumonia, which is not explained by confounders and is not closely linked with elevated serum CRP (C-reactive protein, an indicator of inflammation),” the authors state. The authors say their data adds to a growing body of literature that appears to support a causal link between low vitamin D status and Covid-19 disease severity and death. Although the research was conducted only on unvaccinated patients, they say vitamin D supplementation may play a vital role in protecting both unvaccinated patients and patients in whom the effect of vaccination wanes. Vitamin D is available from sunlight and in foods such as fish, eggs and fortified cereals. About half the Irish population is deficient in the vitamin.

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As NATO tries to get Zelensky in.

China Backs African Union Bid To Join The Group of 20 (SCMP)

Beijing will support the African Union in its decades-long quest to join the G20, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said on Thursday, as China vies with other powers for influence on the continent. South Africa is the only representative of the continent in the Group of 20 despite the African Union pushing for inclusion since its creation in 1999. Indonesian President Joko Widodo said last month he would invite the African bloc, representing 55 countries and 1.4 billion people, to the G20 summit in Bali in November to help the continent’s bid. The G20 comprises 19 countries and the European Union. European Council president Charles Michel also voiced his support last month for the AU’s bid for the G20.

Wang’s pledge also came as Widodo told Bloomberg on Thursday that Chinese President Xi Jinping planned to attend the Bali summit in person, along with Russian leader Vladimir Putin. Xi could meet US President Joe Biden, who is also expected to attend the gathering. If so, it would be the first in-person meeting for the two leaders since Biden took office last year. Beijing and Washington are at odds on everything from Taiwan, Xinjiang, Hong Kong to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. While the Biden administration has moved to expand its global alliances to counter China’s rise, Beijing has responded by focusing on shoring up ties with developing countries in Africa, Asia, and the South Pacific. A seat for the African Union at G20 is believed to be in Beijing’s interests in rallying support to counterbalance the US-led West.

Speaking at a virtual meeting with his African counterparts, Wang hailed African support for Beijing’s “one-China principle” and described their ties as “a pillar force” in defending the rights and interests of developing countries. “In the face of the various forms of hegemonic and bullying practices, China and Africa have stood with each other shoulder to shoulder,” he said. In a veiled swipe at US Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s trip to Africa early this month, he also tried to present Beijing as an alternative to Washington and defend his country’s expanding presence there. “What Africa wishes for is a favourable and amicable cooperation environment, not the zero-sum cold war mentality. What Africa would welcome is mutually beneficial cooperation for the greater well-being of the people, not major-country rivalry for geopolitical gains,” he said.

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As the west disintegrates, east and south unite.

Chinese Ambassador Outlines BRICS Vision (RT)

Russia and China remain key pillars of BRICS, an international alliance also comprising India, Brazil and South Africa, the Chinese ambassador to Moscow wrote in a guest opinion piece for Russia’s TASS news agency, published on Saturday. The two nations are the major “drivers” behind the development of the group, which is gradually becoming a leading force in the international arena, Zhang Hanhui, added. The BRICS countries account for 42% of the world’s population and 25% of the global economy, Zhang said, adding that they account for roughly half of global economic growth, meaning that “the value of cooperation within BRICS is constantly rising.”

The group of emerging economies is increasingly attracting the attention of other nations, the envoy said, noting that representatives of 50 countries took part in various BRICS+ events in the first half of this year alone. He also welcomed the development of the BRICS+ format, which allows other countries to join the group’s permanent members in certain discussions. Three such events this year were attended by the leaders of 13 non-BRICS states, Zhang said. International challenges, including the Covid-19 pandemic, the Ukraine conflict and rising tensions between major world powers, demand that Moscow and Beijing “strengthen their strategic cooperation,” the ambassador said, adding that BRICS should also “support efforts opposing hegemony and contribute to the establishment of real multilateralism” in international relations.

The ambassador pointed out that since the start of 2022, the BRICS nations have agreed on several initiatives in the field of economic digitalization and technology sharing. Beijing, which heads the group this year, has put forward a number of initiatives that would further enhance cooperation between members in the fields of innovation, he added. The Covid-19 pandemic also demonstrated the need for closer cooperation in medical research, the ambassador said, pointing to the need for sharing healthcare products with developing nations to help them overcome the pandemic. Zhang noted that in March, the BRICS countries launched a joint vaccine development center, offering joint research and development platforms to developing nations.

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Hey, Khan! Talk to Putin!

Millions Could Be Left Without Heat And Food In Winter, London Mayor Warns (RT)

Millions of people in the UK could find themselves unable to put food on the table and heat their homes this coming winter if the government doesn’t intervene, London Mayor Sadiq Khan said on Saturday. “We’ve seen nothing like this before,” Khan wrote on Twitter, referring to soaring energy prices and record inflation of more than 10%. “We’re facing a winter where for millions it won’t be about choosing between heating or eating but tragically being able to afford neither,” he warned. “This can’t happen,” the mayor insisted, adding that the British government “needs to step in so that people can meet their basic needs.”

He accompanied the post with a data from the Auxilione energy consultancy, predicting that energy bills in the UK could increase by 80% in October, exceeding £3,600 ($4,292) per year on average. For comparison, the cap set by energy industry regulator, Ofgem, in October 2021 stood at £1,400 per year. Khan also spoke on the same issue on Friday while visiting a warehouse that distributes supplies to food banks in one of London’s boroughs. He gave assurances that his administration is“committed” to providing support for struggling Londoners, but called on the government to work harder, as there is “no sign of this rise in costs slowing down”.

“Ministers must act now to help prevent this cost of living crisis becoming a national disaster,” the mayor said. Economic difficulties caused by the Covid-19 pandemic in Europe have been further exacerbated by Western sanctions imposed on Moscow over the conflict in Ukraine and the subsequent decrease in Russian natural gas supplies to the EU.

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“Europe really needs to act as a negotiator between NATO, Russia and Ukraine, and include China in the discussions..”

Just How Bad Could Things Get This Winter? (RT)

Natural gas prices across Europe have quadrupled this year. Looking ahead to winter and imagining the new heights energy values may hit, consumers are starting to opt for an alternative (old) form of heating – wood. Huge demand for combustibles, as well as for wood stoves, has been detected in several Western states. In Germany, where almost a half of homes are heated with gas, people are turning to a more guaranteed energy source. Firewood sellers tell local media that they are barely coping with the demand. The country is also witnessing a rise in cases of wood theft. Next door, in the Netherlands, business owners note that their clients are buying wood earlier than ever. In Belgium, wood producers are struggling with demand, while prices are going up – as they are across the region.

In Denmark, one local stove manufacturer told the media that, while demand for his product was on the rise since the start of the Covid pandemic, this year’s profit is forecast to reach over 16 million kroner (€2 million), compared with 2.4 million in 2019. A huge increase. Even Hungary, a country that didn’t support the EU’s decision to phase out Russian fossil fuels and agreed a new gas purchase with Moscow this summer, is making preparations for a tough winter. The country has announced a ban on the export of firewood and relaxed some restrictions on logging. The World Wildlife Fund Hungary has expressed its concern on the matter, declaring: “There has been no precedent for such a decision in our country for decades.” In fact, the conflict in Ukraine is not the only reason for the energy crisis. The increase in prices had already been observed in 2021.

“It was the effect of supply chain interruptions due to COVID, a very cold winter, very hot summer and China’s energy crisis, that led to [the] buying [of] huge amounts of LNG around the world,” says Professor Phoebe Koundouri, Director of the Research laboratory on Socio-Economic and Environmental Sustainability at Athens University of Economics and Business, and President of the European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists. When the conflict in Ukraine came about, the sanctions against Russia – followed by Moscow’s response to the restrictions – sent prices through roof. “Europe really needs to act as a negotiator between NATO, Russia and Ukraine, and include China in the discussions, in order to find a solution that is meaningful for the millions of people that are being affected by this geopolitical crisis,” Prof. Koundourisays.

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“It is conceivable that the population would rebel or that there would be looting..”

Swiss Revolt Warning Issued (RT)

Swiss people may revolt and resort to looting if the Alpine nation is hit by a severe energy crunch this winter, the police chief of one of its cantons told local media on Saturday. Fredy Fassler, the head of the Security and Justice Department in the canton of St. Gallen, told German-language daily Blick that a blackout would have “far-reaching consequences.” “Imagine, you can no longer withdraw money at the ATM, you can no longer pay with the card in the store or refuel your tank at the gas station. Heating stops working. It’s cold. Streets go dark. It is conceivable that the population would rebel or that there would be looting,” he said, adding that the country’s authorities should take measures to prepare for such extreme scenarios. According to Fassler, while he does not think such a disaster is likely, police have prepared for such an eventuality.


Exercises that were conducted in 2014 to prepare for a blackout scenario revealed major shortcomings, including lack of emergency generators for police, hospitals and other critical infrastructure and services, he said. “These shortcomings have been addressed in recent years, so the security forces are ready,” the police chief added, noting that his agency is even prepared to provide the Swiss with cash if they are unable to use cards in stores, given that relevant agreements with banks have been signed. Fassler’s comments come after Swiss authorities said last week that they may place restrictions on energy consumption this coming winter, signaling that “power shortages [are] among the most serious risks” for the landlocked country. Earlier, Werner Luginbuhl, the head of Switzerland’s electricity regulator ElCom, complained that electricity was being used “completely thoughtlessly,” and urged citizens to stock up on candles and firewood due to possible power outages in the country this winter.

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“..I think going through your regulatory process will actually hurt the quality of my food and that’s what I’m being paid top dollar for, it is this high quality food.”

Amish Farmer Fighting US Government For Right To Sell His All-natural Food (RN)

Miller’s Organic Farm is located in the remote Amish village of Bird-in-Hand, Pennsylvania. The farm supplies everything from grass-fed beef and cheese, to raw milk and organic eggs, to dairy from grass-fed water buffalo and all types of produce, all to roughly 4,000 private food club members who pay top dollar for high quality whole food. The private food club members appreciate their freedom to get food from an independent farmer that isn’t processing his meat and dairy at U.S. Department of Agriculture facilities, which mandates that food be prepared in ways that Miller’s Organic Farm believe make it less nutritious. Amos Miller, the farm’s owner, contends that he’s preparing food the way God intended — but the U.S. government doesn’t see things that way. They recently sent armed federal agents to the farm and demanded he cease operations. The government is also looking to issue more than $300,000 in fines — a request so steep, it would put the farm out of business.

“There’s this farmer named Amos Miller and he’s been farming for 25 years. No electricity, no fertilizer, no gasoline. He has really, really impressive crop yields using only the only the oldest of methods, totally organic. He has milk, he has beef, he has different types of sheep. He has chicken, all types of vegetables. And he has a private buyers club of about 4,000 people all across the country that pay him top dollar for his food. And the government doesn’t like this idea of a private buyers club. They have raided his farm with armed federal agents and they have said he needs to stop selling his meat until he gets regulated by the federal agencies whose job it is to, you know, regulate food.

And he says, “you know, the way you guys regulate it, it kind of hurts the nutrition of the food — you know, you wash it in these things, you’ve given these vaccines and the cows get all types of medicine, I don’t do any of that. So I think going through your regulatory process will actually hurt the quality of my food and that’s what I’m being paid top dollar for, it is this high quality food.” So they are fining him hundreds of thousands of dollars, and they’ve actually sent armed federal agents there to take inventory of his meat, of his dairy, and they visit him to make sure that he’s not selling anything and that he’s not ramping up his production in any way. So that’s where he is now. He’s figuring out how to fight the federal government, what he’s going to do. And you know, he’s been put in this really tight spot along with the people who, you know, look to him for this food. They’re not getting their meat and dairy right now because of the government.

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“No farms, no food.”

Dutch Farmers Confront Billionaire ‘Green’ Elite’s Food System Reset Plan (GZ)

Dutch farmers’ protests offer a preview of the resistance to come as transnational “green” billionaires advance a “reset” of the global food system. The elite agenda threatens to deepen an international cost of living crisis and spark unrest well beyond The Netherlands. Ingrid de Sain is a Dutch farmer who lives in the Northern Holland town of Schellinkhout, where she and her family tend to a 62 acre farm with about 100 dairy cows. Like thousands of fellow citizens in her industry, she now finds herself locked in an existential conflict with her government. “Farming is in your heart,” de Sain told The Grayzone. “And you don’t want to do something else. You’re a farmer or you’re not.” She says she will oppose any efforts requiring her to give up a farm that guarantees prosperity for future generations of her family.

The Dutch government announced plans to slash nitrogen oxide and ammonia emissions in June 2022, enforcing an ambitious agenda in the name of protecting the climate. The imposed reductions could spell devastating consequences for the country’s farming industry and add enormous stress to already chaotic global food supply chains. Today, the Netherlands is Europe’s top exporter of meat and the second largest agricultural exporter overall in the world, right behind the US. The tiny nation’s agricultural success is the product of its traditional dependence on generously sized farms that use nitrogen-rich fertilizer to produce heavy yields. Such methods were encouraged by Brussels through the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy, which prioritized the growth of cattle lots, incentivized the use of chemical fertilizers, and pushed many smaller family farmers out of operation.

In 2019, a Dutch court order declared in 2019 that nitrogen-compound fertilizer was a top threat to the climate and biodiversity, and mandated a 70-80% decrease in its use. If implemented in the country, the proposed reductions could destroy a full third of its farming output and eliminate somewhere between 30 and 50% of Dutch livestock. The stage was set for open conflict. Once the pro-EU coalition government of Dutch PM Mark Rutte took steps to implement the restrictions in June 2022, local farmers responded immediately with ferocious mass protests that have blocked roads, airports, and grocery distribution centers. Since the outbreak of demonstrations, supermarkets shelves have gone empty as the farmers’ cry of “No farms, no food” reverberates nationwide.

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Same bike, same couple – 1955 and 2015

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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May 242022
 
 May 24, 2022  Posted by at 8:27 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  64 Responses »


Giovanni Bellini Pietà 1474

 

We’re in It Now for Sure (Kunstler)
False Russia Collusion Story Began And Ended With Hillary Clinton (JTN)
FBI Alfa-Bank Inquiry Based On DOJ ‘Referral’ That Came From Sussmann (WE)
Durham Puts FBI Investigators On Stand (JTN)
What It Means That Hillary Clinton Did It (AT)
A Major National Embarrassment Is Being Hidden From Ukrainians (Storozhenko)
UK Backs Lithuania’s Plan To Lift Russian Blockade Of Ukraine Grain (G.)
A Breakdown Of The Ukraine Aid Bill (Semler)
In Davos, Ukrainians Host “Russian War Crimes House” (Y!)
Republicans Will Target ‘Public Health Bureaucrats’ When In Majority (JTN)
Pfizer Moves to Dismiss Lawsuit From COVID-19 Vaccine Trial (ET)
Supermarkets Could Soon Urge You Not To Use Cash Or Card To Pay (MEN)
Albanese Squandering Leverage on Assange (Lauria)

 

 

 

 

Tulsi
https://twitter.com/i/status/1528687472359575552

 

 

 

 

Build Back Amish.

We’re in It Now for Sure (Kunstler)

Lately, a new derangement is overtaking Western Civ, for the excellent reason that Western Civ gave birth to techno industrial societies and is now first to undergo the alarming demise of that system. I speak of the World Economic Forum (under one Klaus Schwab) and its stated ambition to Build Back Better — based on its unstated premise that the current system must be nudged to its death sooner rather than later, and on-purpose. All the governments of Western Civ nations seem coordinated on this. But it’s not going to happen as Mr. Schwab and his followers hoped, for at least a couple of reasons. First, as already stated, God is a prankster and likes to throw knuckleballs at the human race.

Anyway, the “better” that Mr. Schwab expects is an ultra-techno-industrial “trans-human” scheme that is unlikely to come about if the support system of the older techno-industrial system is no longer available to support it. As currently conceived, BBB depends on electric power, and that is one of the major sub-systems of our system that already looks like it’s going janky. You get the idea, I’m sure, so I’ll cut to the chase for now. About a year ago I had my French easel set up on a country road nearby and was busy painting a motif at-hand when along came a horse-drawn wagon filled with four men in severe black-and-white clothing, wearing beards.

They were apparently a bit surprised by the strange sight of me painting a picture and they stopped to chat. They were Amish and had lately moved to the county from down in Pennsylvania, which was running out of farmland for their fruitful people. Not a half-hour later a second horse-drawn wagon passed by. I admit, the incident gave me a thrill — not just the sensory pleasure of the horses’ ripe animal smell, and the gentle rhythm of their clip-clopping along. But since I had lately been writing a bunch of novels about life in a post-economic collapse town like my own (the World Made by Hand series), I enjoyed the strange delight of being transported briefly into a scene of my own imagining — the prequel of my own books.

Many more Amish are landing in the county these days. I hear they go around to the failing or inactive farms with bundles of cash and make an offer, just like that. Evidently the method works. It’s given me a business idea: to start an Amish skills school, buy a few acres with a barn and hire some Amish men to teach all us non-Amish how to do a few things that might be good to know in the years ahead, like how to harness horses to a cart or a mule to a plow. (The Amish like to make a bit of cash-money when they can.) That’s my idea of how to build back better. What do you think?

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Put Obama on the stand as well.

False Russia Collusion Story Began And Ended With Hillary Clinton (JTN)

In an era where the hunt for disinformation has become a political obsession, Hillary Clinton has mostly escaped having to answer what role she played in spreading the false Russia collusion narrative that gripped America for nearly three years. On Friday, that dodge ended with a most unlikely witness: her former campaign manager Robby Mook, who was supposed to be a witness helping the defense of her former campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann on a charge of lying to the FBI. Instead, under cross-examination by Special Counsel John Durham’s team, Mook was forced to concede two extraordinary facts. First, the Clinton campaign wasn’t “totally confident” about the accuracy of computer data suggesting Donald Trump had a secret communications channel to the Kremlin via Russia’s Alfa Bank.

And second, Hillary Clinton herself personally approved spreading the story to the news media, despite the concerns about its accuracy. “I discussed it with Hillary as well,” Mook testified. “I don’t remember the substance of the conversation, but notionally, the discussion was, hey, we have this and we want to share it with a reporter,” Mook said. Prosecutors asked Mook if Clinton approved leaking the story to the media. “She agreed,” Mook testified. The testimony confirms what CIA Director John Brennan told President Barack Obama secretly in July 2016 and what the CIA later told the FBI two months later: There was intelligence that Clinton had approved a plan to dirty up Trump with Russia allegations to distract from her own email server scandal.

Kevin Brock, the FBI’s former assistant director for intelligence, called Mook’s revelation a “startling piece of testimony, particularly since he was a defense witness.” “On the surface it looks like a major victory for John Durham,” Brock said. “Don’t forget he’s trying to paint an overall picture here. Sussmann is just one pixel on that photo. “The trial is the vehicle that Durham is using to help bring out the truth, to tell a story of a political campaign that in two instances pursued information that was totally fabricated or at least misinterpreted with the Alfa Bank connection to Trump and use that disinformation to mislead the American voter,” he added.

Slowly over six years, the Russia collusion story has been exposed for what it was: a three-legged political dirty trick in which highly credible figures with deep law enforcement, intelligence and news media ties were paid by the Clinton campaign to flood the FBI, the CIA and the public with unproven allegations that Trump was secretly colluding with Russia to steal the election from Clinton.

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Who investigates the FBI?

FBI Alfa-Bank Inquiry Based On DOJ ‘Referral’ That Came From Sussmann (WE)

The FBI opened a full-fledged counterintelligence investigation into since-debunked Trump-Russia collusion claims just four days after Michael Sussmann pushed the allegations to the bureau. The electronic communication marking the opening of the investigation cited a “referral” from the Justice Department rather than saying the Alfa-Bank allegations came from a lawyer for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign. The opening communication, titled “Alfa Bank,” was authored by FBI agents Curtis Heide and Allison Sands, both of whom may testify this week, and the investigation initiated on Sept. 23, 2016, four days after Sussmann’s meeting with FBI General Counsel James Baker.

Sussmann was indicted in September for allegedly concealing his clients — Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign and “Tech Executive-1,” former Neustar executive Rodney Joffe — from Baker when he pushed since-debunked claims of a secret back channel between the Trump Organization and Russia’s Alfa-Bank. Sussmann has pleaded not guilty. Sussmann had worked at the Justice Department in the past, and testimony from Baker last week stated that he had a badge that allowed him access to the FBI. The case identification was “Alfa Bank, Russia — Contacts / Agents, Sensitive Investigative Matter,” and the opening document said it “documents the opening of a Full Field Investigation into the network communications between a U.S.-based server and the Russian ALFA BANK organization.” Enclosed was a “White Paper.”

“On or about September 19, 2016, FBI received a referral of information from the U.S. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE, detailing an unusually configured email server in Pennsylvania belonging to the TRUMP ORGANIZATION,” the FBI wrote in September 2016. “In that referral, the DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE provided the FBI with a white paper that was produced by an anonymous third party. According to the white paper, a U.S.-based server that is owned by the TRUMP ORGANIZATION has been communicating with the Russian-based ALFA BANK organization in Moscow, Russia.”

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Trying to cover their asses.

Durham Puts FBI Investigators On Stand (JTN)

In the trial of former Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann, prosecutors on Monday called two FBI witnesses who testified that clarity regarding the source of allegations of a secret hotline between the Trump Organization and Russia’s Alfa Bank would have influenced the bureau’s investigative approach to the now-debunked collusion allegations. Special Counsel John Durham alleges Sussmann lied to former FBI General Counsel James Baker in September 2016 when he said he was not representing any clients as he fed the bureau information purportedly revealing a Trump Organization backchannel to Moscow through Russia’s Alfa Bank. At the time, Sussmann was a partner at the Perkins Coie law firm and representing the Democratic National Committee and a tech company executive, according to the prosecution.

Sussmann has pleaded not guilty to the charge of making a false statement to the FBI. As part of its effort to substantiate the materiality of Sussmann’s alleged lie to the FBI, the prosecution brought FBI agent Ryan Gaynor and former FBI agent Allison Sands to the witness stand on Monday. Both were involved in the investigation into the Alfa Bank allegation Gaynor testified that had he known Sussmann was representing the DNC, he likely would not have volunteered to assist in the investigation. He also said that if Sussmann was paid by the DNC or the Clinton campaign, it might have impacted how the investigation was opened and the close-hold he says was placed on Sussmann’s identity, which prevented him from being able to discuss it with the Chicago branch.

Sands testified that she was informed the investigation began with a referral of information from the Department of Justice. Only later did she find out that the information actually came from then-FBI General Counsel James Baker. After that, she eventually learned that an anonymous third party gave Baker the data. Sands said that knowing the source of the information would have helped her assess its credibility. Sands explained that believing the information came from the DOJ gave it more weight than if someone just walked into the FBI with the data. She said that if the information hadn’t come through the Justice Department, then she didn’t know if it would have triggered a full investigation.

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“..the Clinton-Obama attempted takeover of the government. (Call it the COAT campaign.)”

What It Means That Hillary Clinton Did It (AT)

[..] the Journal explained how the Clinton campaign used the self-generated news of the investigation and the initial Slate article that came of it, both of which they had planted, as the basis for making tweet after tweet to the press about the Slate report to churn up mass coverage about it in the press and convince the public that the investigation was about something serious.

The concluding paragraphs of the editorial are worth quoting in full: “In short, the Clinton campaign created the Trump-Alfa allegation, fed it to a credulous press that failed to confirm the allegations but ran with them anyway, then promoted the story as if it was legitimate news. The campaign also delivered the claims to the FBI, giving journalists another excuse to portray the accusations as serious and perhaps true. Most of the press will ignore this news, but the Russia-Trump narrative that Mrs. Clinton sanctioned did enormous harm to the country. It disgraced the FBI, humiliated the press, and sent the country on a three-year investigation to nowhere. Vladimir Putin never came close to doing as much disinformation damage.”

The harm done to the United States by the perfidy of the Clintonistas cannot be overemphasized. That “three-year investigation to nowhere” represented the Clinton-Obama attempted takeover of the government. (Call it the COAT campaign.) With congressional Republicans unwilling to prevent the COAT campaign, the Trump administration was blocked from putting U.S.-Russia relations on a rational, mutually beneficial footing, to the point that, under the present Senate leadership, the specter of war with Russia is no longer an unthinkable thought. The COAT campaign succeeded in keeping the Ukraine pot boiling, with the water first heated by Obama’s stirring up of anti-Russian feelings in Ukraine, leading to the Maidan revolution that ousted the legitimately elected president of Ukraine, Viktor Yanukovych.

A political opposition ready to lie about Donald J. Trump, supported by a media prepared to believe the worst about Mr. Trump has given us the current reality where the deep state is using NATO as an instrument to humiliate Russia, and Republican leaders in Congress are going along with the plans of the deep state to make the globe an unsafe place except for the globalist hegemony. Most of the press will indeed ignore disclosure of the source of the baseless accusations of Trump-Russia collusion — it is no accident that the New York Times ignored the Mook testimony in its May 20 editions. It is, moreover, unlikely that the press will be humiliated by its mendacious coverage of Hillary Clinton; the media, on the contrary, wears its mendacious coverage of Clinton and the anti-Trump neo-totalitarians as deserving of journalistic honors.

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“Not an evacuation, not an exit, not an “extraction”, but captivity.”

A Major National Embarrassment Is Being Hidden From Ukrainians (Storozhenko)

The myth of heroic 82 day defense is already actively promoted by Ukrainian media, even though since late March that defense consisted largely of Azovite efforts to break out of the trap. First on helicopters, then with the help of Macron and Erdogan. And recently they’ve tried to involve everyone who came to mind: Israel, UN, Doctors Without Borders, the Pope, and Elon Musk. In the end, on May 16 and 17 we saw what we were fated to see. Some of the Azovites and AFU soldiers came out of Azov Steel underground, existed using the corridor specified by Russia’s military, were searched and sorted (the wounded to hospitals, the rest to filtration points) and…went into captivity.

Not an evacuation, not an exit, not an “extraction”, but captivity. A simple Russian word, though not a merry one. But that’s what we saw. The Ukrainian viewer saw and was told something entirely different. The Ukrainian language also contains a word for captivity. But Ukrainian media try to avoid it at all costs. Azov’s commander was actually the first. Already on the evening of May 16, as if anticipating questions, he said he’s implementing a decision by top military authorities. OK, but what decision? We know, but Ukrainians viewing his statement in a Telegram channel could not understand a thing and said as much. Then came Zelensky. He mentioned the AFU, UN, ICRC, and at the end: “…soldiers were transported to occupied territory for future exchange.”

Who did the transporting? Not a word about that. But instead we learned this is called an “operation to preserve the lives of Azov Steel defenders.” Russians think they took someone prisoner. But in reality there’s an ongoing military operation, so stop panicking. And it’s not just any operation. No, it’s an operation by Ukraine’s military intelligence (that’s how it was officially reported)! These announcements were picked up by not only Kiev-controlled media but also the most authoritative (well, until recently) world media platforms, including CNN. They also don’t use the word “captivity”, only “evacuation”!

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The craziest plan to date.

UK Backs Lithuania’s Plan To Lift Russian Blockade Of Ukraine Grain (G.)

Britain has backed in principle a proposal by Lithuania for a naval coalition “of the willing” to lift the Russian Black Sea blockade on Ukrainian grain exports. The Lithuanian foreign minister, Gabrielius Landsbergis, proposed the plan during talks with the UK foreign secretary, Liz Truss, on Monday in London. “Time is very very short. We are closing in on a new harvest and there is no other practical way of exporting the grain except through the Black Sea port of Odesa,” he told the Guardian. “There is no way of storing this grain and no other adequate alternative route. It is imperative that we show vulnerable countries we are prepared to take the steps that are needed to feed the world.”

Landsbergis proposed that a naval escort operation – not run by Nato – could protect the grain ships as they headed through the Black Sea and past Russian warships. He suggested that, apart from Britain, countries that were affected by the potential loss of grain such as Egypt could provide the necessary protection. “What we have seen now is just the beginning. The worst is yet to come in the next five to seven weeks when the first harvest arrives and there is no place to put it, so that means people in northern Africa, the Middle East and south-east Asia will be paying exorbitant prices for wheat, corn and the other commodities they need to put food on their table”. He said Ukraine needed to export 80m tonnes of wheat alone this year and the only option was through Odesa,.

His plan, under gestation for weeks, would require demining parts of the Black Sea to ensure safe passage, as well as the agreement of Turkey, which guards the entrance to the Black Sea. “This would be a non-military humanitarian mission and is not comparable with a no-fly zone,” he said. “In this endeavour military ships or planes or both would be used to ensure that the grain supplies can leave Odesa safely and reach the Bosphorus without Russian interference. We would need a coalition of the willing – countries with significant naval power to protect the shipping lanes, and countries that are affected by this”.

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More such bills will follow.

A Breakdown Of The Ukraine Aid Bill (Semler)

Joe Biden signed a bill over the weekend that provides $40.1 billion in emergency funding for Ukraine. The Senate passed it on Thursday and the House had passed the thing the week before. It was a bit touch and go in the Senate following an objection by Rand Paul (R-KY), but all told the legislation practically flew through Congress, at least by Washington’s standards: Biden submitted the funding request to Congress on April 28 and it was sent back to his desk just three weeks later. Based on the bill text, I counted $40.1 billion worth of provisions; $24.6 billion for military programs and $15.5 billion for non-military ones.

Not all of the funding provisions are for aid. The money for for the Department of Treasury and Department of Justice to seize and track Russian assets aren’t, for example, and neither are a portion of the funding for the Pentagon to develop and procure weapons. Moreover, a good bit of the included appropriations covers the operating expenses and overhead of US agencies implementing the aid and not for the aid itself, like for the deployment and hazard pay of US troops to eastern Europe or extra operating expenses for USAID. Of the provisions that are unmistakably for military and non-military aid, it’s tough to say how much will end going to Ukraine, for two reasons. First, there’s a “…and other countries” suffix following most of the major economic, humanitarian, and military assistance provisions.

Second, the bill raises the legal limit on existing authorities that allow the executive branch to authorize additional aid transfers, which could raise the top line amount given to Ukraine (and/or other countries). I estimate that for-profit military contractors will derive about $17.3 billion in revenue from the bill, which exceeds the total amount of non-military aid included in the legislation ($15.5 billion). This doesn’t mean that the money going to military contractors isn’t going to Ukraine. It’s just that giving military aid to Ukraine (or wherever) means giving money to military contractors. The funds given to the Pentagon by Congress through the bill are generally to provide Ukraine either with goods (weapons, equipment) or services (logistical support, intelligence, training). Military contractors get paid by the Pentagon for both, to varying extents.

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Welcome to the WEF.

In Davos, Ukrainians Host “Russian War Crimes House” (Y!)

With Russians banned from Davos, their den in the Swiss mountain resort was taken over by Ukraine and given a new name: “Russian War Crimes House”. The “Russia House” was traditionally used by Russians to hold events and network during the annual World Economic Forum in the Swiss Alps. But organisers excluded them from the meeting of the world’s business and political elite following Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine. Instead of a place to entertain, the house with red shutters on Davos’ main street is now used by Ukrainians to display the atrocities the say Russia is committing. It features photos of cemeteries, people in body bags, a bloodied hand on a pavement, a child in a respirators in a hospital, a baby in a soldier’s arms, buildings in ruins.

Ukrainians are using the building to hold several events during the four-day Davos summit as part of efforts to win more support against Russia, three months after the invasion began. “If we tell the story of this tragedy as wide as possible, maybe it will save some lives,” said Ukrainian oligarch Viktor Pinchuk, whose foundation is among the organisers of the event. After the presentation at the “House of Russian War Crimes”, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenksy used the WEF congress to plead for more weapons for his country, and more sanctions against Russia. A parade of Ukrainian lawmakers and officials attended other events on the summit’s first day to hammer home the need for weapons and sanctions to defeat Russia.

At the “Russian War Crimes House”, the goal is to bring attention to the alleged atrocities committed by Russia. Next to the photos, an entire wall is covered by a map that lists the “war crimes” committed by Russia. On top, a toll as of May 6: 4,177 civilians killed, including 226 children, and 4,378 wounded, including 417 children.

WEF

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Promises promises.

Republicans Will Target ‘Public Health Bureaucrats’ When In Majority (JTN)

Republicans plan on holding public health bureaucrats such as Dr. Anthony Fauci accountable after the 2022 midterm elections, according to a Republican Study Committee (RSC) memo on Monday from Chairman Jim Banks (R-Ind.). While many of the left’s COVID-19 policies “went unchallenged… public health authorities soon started issuing nonsensical, contradictory directives and embracing partisan rhetoric,” according to the memo. “If Congress fails to hold the Fauci clique accountable, and fails to reform public health agencies, we will be giving far-left bureaucrats a blank check to shut the country down whenever they want,” Banks said. “We need to send a message that the restrictions, the mandates and the school closures can never happen again.”


Republicans are likely to take back the House and gain what Banks has claimed will be a “historic majority.” As the RSC is the largest ideological congressional caucus, Banks’ memo may be a preview into GOP actions after midterms. “Holding partisan public health bureaucrats accountable should be a major oversight priority for House Republicans after 2022,” he wrote in the 4-page RSC memo. “Leftists have abused Americans’ willingness to make sacrifices for public health. They have sought to define everything from racism to policing to gun rights to the minimum wage as public health issues,” he noted. Republicans plan on reigning in the CDC’s “mission creep” by refocusing the agency on emergency public health response and requiring it to “be transparent,” among other things. The GOP will also consider restoring the basic science mission at the National Institutes of Health, which oversees Dr. Fauci and his National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases department.

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Laws do not apply to Pfizer.

Pfizer Moves to Dismiss Lawsuit From COVID-19 Vaccine Trial (ET)

Pfizer has asked a U.S. court to throw out a lawsuit from a whistleblower who revealed problems at sites that tested Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine. Brook Jackson, the whistleblower, alleged in a suit that was unsealed in February that Pfizer and associated parties violated clinical trial regulations and federal laws, including the False Claims Act. In its motion to dismiss, Pfizer says the regulations don’t apply to its vaccine contract with the U.S. Department of Defense because the agreement was executed under the department’s Other Transaction Authority (OTA), which gives contract holders the ability to skirt many rules and laws that typically apply to contracts. That means that Jackson’s claim that Pfizer must still comply with the Federal Acquisition Regulations “is simply wrong,” Pfizer said.

Warner Mendenhall, a lawyer who is working on Jackson’s case, said in a recent interview that Pfizer has “clearly not followed federal procurement laws.” “And now they’re saying, ‘of course we didn’t follow federal procurement laws, we didn’t have to—this was just for a prototype,’” he added. Mendenhall, who declined an interview request, said lawyers for Jackson are working on figuring out legal ways to counter Pfizer’s argument. “We may lose on this issue because their contract imposes … none of the normal checks and balances on quality control and consumer protection that we fought for decades in this country,” he said. [..] The government agreed to pay up to $1.9 billion for 100 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine pending U.S. regulatory clearance.

That included the manufacturing of the vaccine on top of researching and developing it. The contract was granted under the “prototype” provision, which falls under the OTA. The rules for prototypes state that just one of four conditions must be satisfied. The condition that was satisfied in the Pfizer contract was the involvement of a “nontraditional defense contractor.” Federal law defines nontraditional defense contractors as “an entity that is not currently performing and has not performed” a contract or subcontract for the Department of Defense for at least one year preceding the solicitation of the OTA agreement. Pfizer has dozens of contracts with the military.

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How to cancel people completely.

Supermarkets Could Soon Urge You Not To Use Cash Or Card To Pay (MEN)

Supermarket giants across the UK could soon ask shoppers to ditch cash and card payments, and instead use their face or fingerprints at the checkout. A trial is in place to increase shopper security at the tills, though some may see it as a step closer to a cashless society. Mastercard is trialling a biometric payment system that could see customers just use their face rather than contactless cards, smartphones or PINs. Shoppers would be able to smile or wave a hand at a scanner to pay for their shopping. It is understood that a customer would be able to scan their face or fingerprint using a supermarket’s smartphone app and link their likeness to a bank card. Payments Card and Mobile website says it would work in a similar way to Apple’s facial ID.

The Telegraph reports how Mastercard, the payments company, wants to roll the programme out worldwide for small and large retailers. Ajay Bhalla, the president of cyber and intelligence at Mastercard, was quoted in the Telegraph as saying: “The way we pay needs to keep pace with the way we live, work and do business, offering choice to consumers with the highest levels of security. Our goal with this new programme is to make shopping a great experience for consumers and merchants alike, providing the best of both security and convenience.” A pilot programme is currently under way in Brazil at five St Marche supermarkets in Sao Paolo. More trials are also planned for Asia and the Middle East.

The biometric facial recognition software would lead to shorter queues, be more hygienic than tapping in a pin, and less vulnerable to fraud linked to credit and debit cards, Mastercard said. It said: “No more fumbling for your phone or hunting for your wallet when you have your hands full – the next generation of in-person payments will only need a quick smile or wave of your hand. The trusted technology that uses your face or fingerprint to unlock your phone can now be used to help consumers speed through the checkout. With Mastercard’s new Biometric Checkout Programme, all you will need is yourself.”

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A vassal state.

Albanese Squandering Leverage on Assange (Lauria)

Anthony Albanese, the newly-elected Australian prime minister, has what might be the best opportunity he will ever have to exchange Julian Assange’s freedom for Australia’s continued cooperation with U.S. aims in the Pacific region. Albanese is set to have his first bilateral meeting on Tuesday with U.S. President Joe Biden after a Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (Quad) summit in Tokyo, when the leaders of the four nations — Australia, India, Japan and the U.S. — meet to discuss relations with China. But in remarks made on Monday before he even left for Japan, Albanese already said his Labor government is fully on board with the Quad’s agenda, as the previous government of Scott Morrison had been. Perhaps more importantly, Albanese said Australia would sign on to Biden’s just announced creation of a new, 13-nation Asian economic bloc aimed at opposing China’s economic dominance in the region, according to reports in The Australian and The Sydney Morning Herald.

Biden had only just announced the new bloc on Monday. Even before he was sworn in, Albanese apparently told Biden about Australia joining the bloc during a telephone conversation they had on Sunday as Biden flew to Japan. Albanese was quoted in The Australian as saying that “he would ‘send a message to the world that there’s a new government in Australia’, while reassuring partners there would be “continuity in the way that we have respect for democracy and the way that we value our friendships and long time alliances.” Albanese also spoke with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson. The Herald reported:

“Albanese spoke to UK counterpart Boris Johnson while flying to Tokyo on Monday. A spokesman described the conversation as friendly and positive. The discussion with Johnson included a commitment from Albanese to support the AUKUS alliance on nuclear submarines and talks on climate change.” Apparently asking for nothing in return, Albanese gave away the store to Biden and Johnson, not even raising Assange’s name, according to these reports. He had the leverage of asking Biden to drop the case and Johnson to block the extradition in exchange for continuity from the Morrison government on AUKUS, the Quad, and on joining Biden’s new economic bloc. Of course, not everything discussed between the leaders was reported. There remains an outside chance Albanese did raise Assange. But there has been no movement on Assange after Albanese gave Biden and Johnson what they wanted.

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Oct 112021
 


Paul Gauguin Bathing, Dieppe 1885

 

Hundreds of thousands of US Troops Remain Unvaccinated (DM)
Southwest Cancels 1,800 Flights In 2 Days, Rumours Of Employee ‘Sickout’ (RT)
More Info Surfaces On Southwest Airlines Flight Cancellations (CTH)
If This Is True…. (Denninger)
Judge Rules Against Natural Immunity Claim Challenging Vaccine Mandate (ET)
Natural Immunity and Covid-19: Twenty-Nine Scientific Studies (BI)
Amish: No Hospitalization, Isolation Or Vaccines = Herd Immunity (Attkisson)
China Prepares for Possible Large-Scale COVID-19 Outbreak (ET)
New Zealand Makes Covid-19 Vaccinations Mandatory For Health Workers (R.)
Getting Flu With Covid Doubles Risk Of Death, Says UK Health Chief (G.)
Shelves Stripped Bare As Brits Rush To Panic-buy Ahead Of Christmas (RT)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Molnupiravir
Cost in India: 40 capsules 0.13 USD
Cost in US: 10 capsules: 700 USD

 

 

This is a war

 

 

“Biden added that country is still on a wartime footing..”

So they can courtmarshal them?

Good luck trying to make the entire army woke.

Hundreds of thousands of US Troops Remain Unvaccinated (DM)

Hundreds of thousands of United States servicemembers remain unvaccinated or are only partially vaccinated against the coronavirus, as the deadline to have the shot draws closer. The vaccination rates vary between military branches, according to data obtained by the Washington Post, with 98 percent of the active duty Navy fully vaccinated. There are almost 340,000 such personnel, with the two per cent who haven’t been jabbed representing close to 7,000 people. Meanwhile, just 72 percent of the 181,000 active Marine Corps personnel have been vaccinated – meaning close to 51,000 have yet to have the jab. Both branches have to be fully vaccinated by November 28, under the Defense Department’s August mandate.

Figures show that 81 percent of Army members are fully vaccinated. That branch of the military has 485,000 members, with the 19 per cent who remain unvaccinated representing well over 95,000 personnel. And more than 60,000 people in the Air Force have just three weeks to meet their deadline to be fully vaccinated. The rate, though, is worse for members of the Army National Guard and Army Reserves – which have until June to meet the vaccination requirement. Military officials said the rates have varied due to the staggering deadlines, and have expressed hope that the vaccination rates will increase as the deadlines near. Since the pandemic began, about a quarter million service members have been infected with the virus, and more than 2,000 were killed, with a large outbreak last year aboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt that showed how quickly the virus could spread in close quarters.

The outbreak served as a wake up call when the ship was sidelined for two months after about 1,100 crew members were infected and one soldier died. In August, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin announced that he was seeking President Joe Biden’s approval to mandate that all service members get vaccinated against the virus. which the president later approved. He said in a statement at the time that he strongly supports Austin’s decision, noting the plan would add the COVID vaccine ‘to the list of required vaccinations for our service members not later than mid-September,’ according to the Associated Press. Biden added that country is still on a wartime footing and ‘being vaccinated will enable our service members to stay healthy, to better protect their families, and to ensure that our force is ready to operate anywhere in the world.’

LA firefighters

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A strange denial game. It was the weather…

Southwest Cancels 1,800 Flights In 2 Days, Rumours Of Employee ‘Sickout’ (RT)

Thousands of passengers that booked Southwest Airlines flights for their weekend travel have been stranded in the US airports after the airline cancelled the flights amid reports of a protest against the vaccine mandate. SouthWest, known for its relatively low prices, cancelled at least 1,018 flights on Sunday, that is in addition to 808 flights that were cancelled on Saturday, US Today reported, citing flight tracking data. In a statement on Saturday, SouthWest blamed the abnormal rate of cancellations on air traffic control issues and “disruptive weather,” adding that they were working to “recover” the operation. However, the situation appeared to have only worsened on Sunday, with SouthWest account on Twitter being inundated by complaints from the disgruntled passengers claiming that flights had been cancelled out of the blue and that the airline’s employees were nowhere to be seen.

“Flight cancelled out of nowhere and now NO ONE is seen at the front desks to assist customers,” actor Kevin Michael Martin complained. Another passenger, who has been apparently stranded at a Dallas, Texas, airport, posted a photo of a long line of people, tweeting: “Ticket agent counter before security is a mess,” to which SouthWest responded by insisting that the chaos was merely a result of “ATC issue and disruptive weather.” “Thanks for hanging in there with us today,” SouthWest said. Southwest Airlines Pilots Association (SWAPA), which represents some 10,000 pilots, also poured cold water on the speculations of an ongoing strike, saying on Sunday that the group was “focused on the safety of our crews, passengers, and overcoming operational challenges, not unofficial job actions.”

However, media citing “airline sources” have reported that air traffic controllers were staging a mass “sickout” or walkout at the federal air traffic control center in Hilliard, Florida, over mandatory vaccinations. The reported protest caused “ripple effect” paralyzing SouthWest operations, Leland Vittert, national correspondent for NewsNation, reported on Twitter. Responding to the rumours of a mass walkout on Sunday afternoon, The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) dismissed the report, insisting that “no FAA air traffic staffing shortages have been reported since Friday.” “Flight delays and cancellations occurred for a few hours Friday afternoon due to widespread severe weather, military training and limited staffing in one area of the Jacksonville Air Route Traffic Control Center,” the agency said.

Psychiatrist

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“Essentially, the union cannot organize or even acknowledge the sickout, because doing so would make it an illegal job action.”

More Info Surfaces On Southwest Airlines Flight Cancellations (CTH)

People inside Southwest Airlines are speaking out carefully and pointing out why there are so many flight disruptions. Essentially, the background issues are what were discussed earlier. Pilots are pushing back against vaccine mandates; and if you think about the curriculum vitae of a typical pilot, it makes sense.A big percentage of commercial airline pilots are former military pilots. That group of people carry a strong disposition toward the principles of patriotism, service, liberty and freedom. It is a simple truism that upsets leftists, but it makes sense for this specifically skilled workforce group to be the tip of the push back spear. Alex Berenson provides some background details after being contacted by a Southwest pilot:

“The pilot emailed following the first Southwest post today (and provided his SWA ID to prove his identity). He asked that I paraphrase the email. Essentially, the union cannot organize or even acknowledge the sickout, because doing so would make it an illegal job action. Years ago, Southwest and its pilots had a rough negotiation, and the union would not even let the pilots internally discuss the possibility of working-to-rule (which would have slowed Southwest to a crawl). But at the moment the pilots don’t even have to talk to each other about what they’re doing. The anger internally – not just among pilots but other Southwest workers – is enormous. The tough prior negotiations notwithstanding, Southwest has a history of decent labor relations, and workers believe the company should stand up for them against the mandate. Telling pilots in particular to comply or face termination has backfired.”

[..] Factually I do not believe a federal mandate for a vaccine is even possible or legal. It appears to me that all of Biden’s threats in this regard are simply that, threats. The purpose of the threat is to push people to take the vaccine without actually attempting a legal federal mandate; and that approach so far has been successful. However, now they are going to encounter the more hard-core groups who will not concede liberty or freedom to a federal mandate. It is obvious Anthony Fauci also knows a federal mandate will lose in court when challenged. The fact that Fauci brings up state vaccination requirements for education, as examples of historically forced vaccinations is both a strawman argument and structurally false. There has never been a FEDERAL mandate for any vaccination. All the vaccinations Fauci discusses (ex. his kids) were state mandates. Each state also has a different set of standards and laws for children and vaccines. There is nothing federal.

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“I trust animal meds in this sort of context far more than human ones. Go kill someone’s tens-of-millions of dollar racehorse and see how long you live. Whack Fluffy and it will be all over the news for a week..”

If This Is True…. (Denninger)

“Fun fact: Between 100-200 United States Congress Members (plus many of their staffers & family members) with COVID.. were treated by a colleague over the past 15 months with ivermectin & the I-MASK+ protocol at http://flccc.net. None have gone to hospital. Just sayin’.” There are 535 members of Congress. On the lower boundary this is 19% of the members, plus staff and family or close to one in five. On the upper boundary it is more than a third. Remember folks that doctors have been threatened with loss of their medical licenses for writing prescriptions and chain pharmacies, which are most of them, have in many cases refused to fill said prescriptions. The entire reason people have gone out and bought “pony paste” is that they can’t go to the local doc-in-a-box and get a script for Ivermectin.

Incidentally I trust animal meds in this sort of context far more than human ones. Go kill someone’s tens-of-millions of dollar racehorse and see how long you live. Whack Fluffy and it will be all over the news for a week with the responsible vet run out of town. But killing Granny, if you’re a hospital and can come up with a positive PCR test you get a $33,000 bounty — and everyone, including the media, yawns. Do I believe Ivermectin is the entire answer? No. It wasn’t for me, and I used it when I got Covid in early August. But was it part of the answer? I believe it was. It certainly didn’t kill me and on the data it is about 100 times safer than Tylenol. We have 40 years of data on its safety and it has a risk of seriously harming you of about 1 in 600,000. With close to four billion human doses dispensed and consumed that data is pretty solid; I certainly trust it.

Can you OD on it or worse, find some product that has it and other things in it too and those other drugs are unsafe (or at least untested) in humans? Certainly. But remember folks: We had an out-and-out fraud, a actual medical practitioner, who stated their entire ER was full of people who poisoned themselves with the drug. The hospital, a day or two later when they realized they had been named, issued a formal statement that exactly zero persons had shown up in their Emergency Room having been poisoned by self-administration of Ivermectin. Did anyone go to prison for this lie? Nope. Did that person’s medical ticket get punched permanently for their false presentation? Nope. What sanction was placed on said person for their intentional fraud? None.

Is Covid serious? It certainly can be. While there are predictors of increased risk the fact is that just as with any drug who gets hammered and who does not is not certain. I used a prophylactic protocol for close to a year and a half and despite somewhere around two dozen known exposures I did not get the virus. I was still using that protocol when I finally did get the virus via an exposure that was close enough to get me, but was hardly as close as many of the others. I also was under a serious immune assault due to a yellowjacket swarm during the incubation period; without that I might well have once again avoided infection. There’s no way for me to know that with any degree of certainty.

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Jacobson 1905. Wasn’t that about eugenics?

Judge Rules Against Natural Immunity Claim Challenging Vaccine Mandate (ET)

A federal judge on Oct. 8 denied a request to block Michigan State University’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate on the basis of natural immunity. An employee at the school, Jeanna Norris, filed a lawsuit against the mandate and asked a judge to intervene on the basis that she had already contracted COVID-19 and recovered. She presented two antibody tests showing her previous infection, and her doctors told her that she didn’t need to get the vaccine at this time. Despite her natural immunity, Norris faces termination from the university for not complying with the school’s mandate that all students and staff get the shot unless they have a medical or religious exemption.

U.S. District Judge Paul Maloney, an appointee of former President George W. Bush, declined her lawsuit. The mandate, Maloney said, didn’t violate her fundamental rights and pointed to a 1905 Supreme Court ruling. “This Court must apply the law from the Supreme Court: Jacobson essentially applied rational basis review and found that the vaccine mandate was rational in ‘protect[ing] the public health and public safety,’” Maloney said in his order. “The Court cannot ignore this binding precedent.”

[..] “Ms. Norris courageously brought this lawsuit to vindicate the constitutional rights of individuals with naturally acquired immunity to COVID-19 who are subject to irrational vaccine mandates,” Jenin Younes, a lawyer who works for the New Civil Liberties Alliance, who represents Norris, told the paper. “While we are disappointed by today’s order, we are committed to fighting for the rights of COVID-recovered Americans to decline a medically unnecessary vaccine without having to sacrifice their livelihoods.” It comes just days after a federal judge in California ruled against a professor who argued that his previous infection should make him exempt from the University of California’s vaccine requirement.

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“..people who prefer an exposure risk to the virus in order to gain robust immunity deserve the freedom to make that choice.”

Natural Immunity and Covid-19: Twenty-Nine Scientific Studies (BI)

From the beginning of the March 2020 lockdowns for the SARS-CoV-2 virus, the subject of natural immunity (also called post-infection immunity) has been neglected. Once the vaccination became widely available, what began with near silence at the beginning turned nearly into a complete blackout of the topic. Even now, there is an absence of open discussion, presumably in the interests of promoting universal vaccination and required documentation of such vaccination as a condition of participating in public life and even the jobs marketplace. Still, the science exists. Many studies exist. Their authors deserve credit, recognition, and to have their voices heard.

These studies demonstrate what was and is already known: natural immunity for a SARS-type virus is robust, long-lasting, and broadly effective even in the case of mutations, generally more so than vaccines. In fact, a major contribution of 20th-century science has been to expand upon and further elucidate this principle that has been known since the ancient world. Every expert presumably knew this long before the current debates. The effort to pretend otherwise is a scientific scandal of the highest order, especially because the continued neglect of the topic is affecting the rights and freedoms of billions of people.

People who have contracted the virus and recovered deserve recognition. For that matter, people who prefer an exposure risk to the virus in order to gain robust immunity deserve the freedom to make that choice. The realization that natural immunity – which pertains now to perhaps half of the US population and billions around the world – is effective in providing protection should have a dramatic effect on vaccine mandates. Individuals whose livelihoods and liberties are being deprecated and deleted need access to the scientific literature as it pertains to this virus. They should send a link to this page far and wide. The scientists have not been silent; they just haven’t received the public attention they deserve.

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“You’re changing our culture completely to try to act like they wanted us to act the last year, and we’re not going to do it.”

Amish: No Hospitalization, Isolation Or Vaccines = Herd Immunity (Attkisson)

The Amish are a Christian group that emphasizes the virtuous over the superficial. They don’t usually drive, use electricity, or have TVs. And during the Covid-19 outbreak, they became subjects in a massive social and medical experiment. Sharyl: So, it’s safe to say there was a whole different approach here in this community when coronavirus broke out than many other places? Calvin Lapp: Absolutely. Calvin Lapp is Amish Mennonite. Lapp: There’s three things the Amish don’t like. And that’s government— they won’t get involved in the government, they don’t like the public education system— they won’t send their children to education, and they also don’t like the health system. They rip us off.

Those are three things that we feel like we’re fighting against all the time. Well, those three things are all part of what Covid is. After a short shutdown last year, the Amish chose a unique path that led to Covid-19 tearing through at warp speed. It began with an important religious holiday in May. Lapp: When they take communion, they dump their wine into a cup and they take turns to drink out of that cup. So, you go the whole way down the line, and everybody drinks out of that cup, if one person has coronavirus, the rest of church is going to get coronavirus. The first time they went back to church, everybody got coronavirus. Lapp says they weren’t denying coronavirus, they were facing it head on.

Lapp: It’s a worse thing to quit working than dying. Working is more important than dying. But to shut down and say that we can’t go to church, we can’t get together with family, we can’t see our old people in the hospital, we got to quit working? It’s going completely against everything that we believe. You’re changing our culture completely to try to act like they wanted us to act the last year, and we’re not going to do it.

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Recognize this?

“..you can be quarantined at any time and put in a quarantine site. And the quarantine sites can also be a place of political persecution,” Lin said.”

China Prepares for Possible Large-Scale COVID-19 Outbreak (ET)

The Chinese regime has notified local authorities to prepare for a large-scale outbreak of COVID-19, according to leaked internal documents obtained by the Chinese Epoch Times. One document, titled “Notice of Further Strengthening of Epidemic Prevention” was issued by the Chinese regime’s State Council, and forwarded by Fujian provincial government to local authorities on Sept. 30. The other is a “National Day Epidemic Prevention Notice” issued by the State Council on Oct. 1 and distributed by the Fujian provincial officials to local authorities. The documents are both marked “extra urgent.” Both notices request enhanced preparations for an emergency response to the outbreak, with the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) putting forward at least two standards for local authorities.

One is to build central isolation sites, with local authorities required by the end of October to set up isolation centers and rooms of not less than 20 rooms per 10,000 people. The scale of each isolation site must be more than 100 rooms. According to public data, the population of Fujian Province in 2020 was 41.54 million. As of Sept. 19, the province has set up 35,691 quarantine rooms in 296 central sites. Based on the standard in the epidemic prevention notice, Fujian Province will need to build at least 83,000 quarantine rooms by the end of October, which is around 47,000 rooms in less than a month. According to one expert, the requirements for the COVID-19 quarantine sites reveal the real situation of the pandemic in China. Dr. Sean Lin, a former virology researcher at the U.S. Army Research Institute, told The Epoch Times: “This reflects the CCP’s concern about the rise of the epidemic. It must have been concealing the true epidemic in mainland China, otherwise it would not suddenly issue a national notice of emergency preparedness.”

“Notice of Further Strengthening of Epidemic Prevention” requires the establishment of a five-layered control system. It states: “Township and street CCP cadres, community grid staff, grassroots medical workers, police, and volunteers shall jointly implement community epidemic prevention,” such as “strictly implement[ing] community prevention and control,” or locking down residential communities. Lin said that the control system is actually to tighten social management in local areas, and “the CCP’s purpose is to tighten control.” “If there is no nucleic acid test, all the CCP’s epidemic prevention measures are the same as political campaigns. For example, you can be quarantined at any time and put in a quarantine site. And the quarantine sites can also be a place of political persecution,” Lin said.

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New Zealand is walking backwards.

New Zealand Makes Covid-19 Vaccinations Mandatory For Health Workers (R.)

New Zealand will require teachers and workers in the health and disability sectors to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said on Monday, as she extended restrictions in Auckland, its largest city, for another week. New Zealand is fighting the highly infectious Delta outbreak that forced it to abandon its long-standing strategy of eliminating the new coronavirus amid persistent infections and is looking to live with the virus through higher vaccinations. “New Zealand is at one of the trickiest and most challenging moments in the COVID-19 pandemic so far,” Ardern told reporters in Wellington. Ardern, however, said “there is a clear path forward” in the next few months to live with fewer curbs and more freedoms once the country reaches a higher level of vaccinations.


About 2.38 million New Zealanders have so far been fully vaccinated, or about 57% of the eligible population, with officials promising to end lockdowns once 90% of the eligible population is vaccinated. Health and disability sector workers will have to be fully vaccinated by Dec. 1, while school and early learning staff must get their two doses by Jan. 1, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said. The decision of mandatory vaccinations comes as New Zealand reported 35 new cases, all of them in Auckland, down from 60 on Sunday, taking the total cases in the current outbreak to 1,622. Having largely controlled the virus last year, New Zealand has recorded just over 4,600 cases and 28 deaths.

Psychologist

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Nothing the UK Health Security Agency chief executive says makes any sense to me.

Do people really believe there was no flu last year?

Getting Flu With Covid Doubles Risk Of Death, Says UK Health Chief (G.)

People who catch flu and Covid at the same time this winter are twice as likely to die than those who only have coronavirus, according to the UK Health Security Agency chief executive, Dr Jenny Harries. The former deputy chief medical officer for England warned that the UK faces an “uncertain” winter – with both flu and Covid-19 circulating for the first time – and urged people to take up both the coronavirus and flu jabs if eligible. Asked how worried the public should be about flu this winter, she told Sky’s Trevor Phillips On Sunday: “We should be worried about flu each winter. I think people still don’t realise it can be a fatal disease.

“But I think the important thing about this winter is, we are likely to see flu, for the first time in any real numbers, co-circulating with Covid. So the risks of catching both together still remain. And if you do that, then early evidence suggests that you are twice as likely to die from having two together than just having Covid alone. “So I think it’s an uncertain winter ahead – that’s not a prediction, it’s an uncertain feature – but we do know that flu cases have been lower in the previous year so immunity and the strain types are a little more uncertain,” she said. Harries also warned that the UK could have a multi-strain flu this year, with lowered immunity, as last year’s Covid restrictions meant that levels of the virus were extremely low.

She said that on average, about 11,000 people will die from flu each year. “The difference here is because we have, if you like, skipped a year almost with flu, it’s possible we might see multi-strain flu – we usually get one strain predominating,” she added. Harries said there are four strains of virus in this year’s flu vaccine, after taking advice from the World Health Organization (WHO), the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) and looking to countries in the southern hemisphere, where winter and therefore flu season arrives earlier.

“So we’ve got a pretty good array in our toolbox to try and hit whichever one becomes dominant but it could be more than one this year, and people’s immunity will be lower. So I think the real trick here is to get vaccinated in both Covid and flu, but obviously to continue to do those good hygiene behaviours that we’ve been practising all through Covid”, Harries added. Harries also said that making children wear masks in school would not be at the top of her list of Covid-safe measures.

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A can of spam for Christmas

Shelves Stripped Bare As Brits Rush To Panic-buy Ahead Of Christmas (RT)

The supply crisis in Britain has worsened as deep concerns over supply-chain woes, soaring energy bills, and staff shortages prompted millions of locals to stockpile festive essentials ahead of Christmas, leaving shelves empty. About eight million Britons were unable to purchase essential food for two weeks between September 22 and October 3, while one in six said they were struggling to find non-essential items, according to data tracked by the Office of National Statistics (ONS). Two-thirds of British shoppers polled by retail magazine The Grocer were worried or very worried at the prospect of food and drink shortages over Christmas.Hundreds of thousands of British consumers have reportedly booked their delivery slots for Christmas.


Nearly 22,000 slots had been reserved by lunchtime on the first day after supermarket chain Waitrose made dates available last week. Britain has been struggling with a series of severe crises due to supply shortages attributed to several factors, including the Covid-19 pandemic, soaring gas prices, and breaching of trade and labour relations with the European Union. Last week, London called in the army to help the authorities ease the fuel crisis by providing troops and transport to make deliveries to petrol stations after many of the outlets ran dry due to panic buying. Earlier, the UK government issued more than 10,000 three-month visas for drivers of fuel tankers and food lorries, as well as poultry workers. The step was taken to tackle a severe labour crisis that has had an enormous negative impact on food retailers, fast-food chains, and distributors of fuels.

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Ode to Joy
https://twitter.com/i/status/1447120940744253441

 

 

 

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Oct 102014
 
 October 10, 2014  Posted by at 12:17 pm Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , ,  Comments Off on Debt Rattle October 10 2014


NPC Berberich shoe store window, Seventh Street, Washington, DC June 1920

Buckle-Up: Global Stocks In For Long Roller Coaster Ride (CNBC)
Fed Aim Off Target as Inflation Descends Near Danger Zone (Bloomberg)
Why The Strong Dollar May Sink Junk Bonds (CNBC)
Iran Matches Saudi Oil Discounts in Bear Market for Crude (Bloomberg)
OPEC: Milder Winter To Pressure Oil Price Further (CNBC)
US Shale Drillers Hugely Overestimate Reserves Before Investors (Bloomberg)
US Firms Could Make Billions From UK Via Secret TTIP Tribunals (Independent)
Draghi Clashes With Germany’s Schaeuble Over Steps for Europe (Bloomberg)
Is China’s Bubble the Next Financial Crisis? (Bloomberg)
Health Of Global Economy Is Worrying: Stiglitz (CNBC)
Bad Loans At Italy Banks Up 20% In August To Record High (Reuters)
Barcelona Stirs as Spain Warns of Separatist Tinderbox (Bloomberg)
UKIP: From ‘Clowns’ To Contenders (CNBC)
Dark Money Groups Set Record in 2014 US Midterm Elections (Bloomberg)
MH-17 Report False Flag Exposed (Zero Hedge)
The Amish Farmers Reinventing Organic Agriculture (Atlantic)
The Ominous Math Of The Ebola Epidemic (WaPo)
Ebola Is ‘Entrenched And Accelerating’ In West Africa (BBC)

“Overnight the mindlessly bullish JBTD (Just Buy the Dip) crowd felt the cold steel of Edward Scissorhands.”

Buckle-Up: Global Stocks In For Long Roller Coaster Ride (CNBC)

Whipsawing global markets scream fears about global growth conditions and unless data from the world’s major economies improve, a deeper correction is on the cards, say strategists. Asian markets tumbled on Friday, extending the sharp selloff in U.S. and European equities overnight as intensifying concerns over the health of the euro zone economy hit risk appetite. Australia’s benchmark S&P/ASX 200 index led losses, falling 1.8% in the morning session, while Japan’s Nikkei 225 and South Korea’s KOSPI were both off 1.2%. “There are a lot of questions at the moment and not a lot of answers in regards to Europe’s economy, the stability of China’s housing market and the timing of the Fed’s first rate hike,” Chris Weston, chief market strategist at IG told CNBC.

“The hallmarks are in place for a stock market correction – Brent crude prices are falling, long-end U.S. bonds are telling the story that markets are starting to look at low growth and low inflation for a long period of time,” he said. In order to arrest the volatile downtrend in stocks, there needs to be a good run of economic data out the world’s leading economies, Weston said. Nicholas Ferres, investment director, global asset allocation, Eastspring Investments say the bearish price action suggests a market correction is already underway. “Overnight the mindlessly bullish JBTD (Just Buy the Dip) crowd felt the cold steel of Edward Scissorhands. Failure of the market to extend the rebound from the prior day probably suggests that a deeper correction is likely underway,” he said. “From my perch, this reflects a genuine growth scare, evident in the macro news flow from Europe, China and Japan, rather than a direct fear of U.S. policy normalization,” he said.

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People are not spending. They’re broke. How can you raise inflation in those conditions?

Fed Aim Off Target as Inflation Descends Near Danger Zone (Bloomberg)

Federal Reserve officials are hunting for new tactics to raise price increases to their target as slowing global growth, cheaper commodities and flat wages sound warnings that inflation is descending toward the danger zone. The Fed needs a clear strategy for getting the inflation rate higher after falling short of its 2% target for 28 consecutive months. Now, as longer-run inflation expectations erode in financial markets, the Federal Open Market Committee is shifting its focus toward prices after putting its main emphasis on jobs for months. Several officials worried that “inflation might persist below” the committee’s target for “quite some time,” minutes from the Sept. 16-17 meeting said. Too-low inflation “is getting to be a real issue again,” said former Fed Governor Laurence Meyer. With inflation at 1.5% according to the Fed’s preferred index, Meyer said FOMC policy makers aren’t likely to raise interest rates, even if the economy approaches full employment, defined as a jobless rate of 5.2% to 5.5%.

Unemployment was 5.9% last month. “The timing of the first rate hike is all about inflation,” said Meyer, now a senior managing director at Macroeconomic Advisers LLC in Washington. Policy makers including regional Fed Presidents William Dudley of New York, Charles Evans of Chicago and Narayana Kocherlakota of Minneapolis have in recent days all mentioned below-target inflation as a risk that weighs against raising interest rates too soon. An inflation rate approaching zero is bad for the economy because of its impact on behavior by businesses and consumers. Companies’ inability to raise prices hurts profits, and they rarely compensate by cutting wages, so they fire workers instead. Consumers anticipating falling prices may postpone discretionary purchases. This can combine to create a vicious circle of less spending and further downward pressure on prices.

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Not just junk bonds.

Why The Strong Dollar May Sink Junk Bonds (CNBC)

A simmering mix of a strong U.S. dollar and weak commodity prices may be brewing up trouble for junk bond exchange-traded funds (ETFs) with a hefty weighting in materials companies. “If the U.S. dollar stays strong, that will exacerbate the impact of the weaker commodity prices” on miners’ cash flow and the ability to meet debt payments, said May Zhong, a credit analyst at Standard & Poor’s. Coal companies, especially U.S.-based ones competing in the export market, are a particular concern, she said. Faced with oversupply, thermal coal prices have fallen to near five-year lows, while the U.S. dollar index has risen as much as 8.3% so far this year. But Australian miners may also take a hit, she said. “The Australian dollar hasn’t fallen to the same extent as major commodity prices. It’s still relatively strong compared to the U.S. dollar,” she said.

“You do need a weak local currency to help those [B-rated] miners or shield them from weaker commodity prices,” Zhong said. That may have a knock-on effect on the high-yield bond ETFs, which in turn may weigh the entire junk-bond segment. Around 14.7% of the holdings of the iShares iBoxx high-yield ETF, which tracks the Markit iBoxx index, are in the oil and gas industries, while another 6.5% are in basic materials. The ETF has around $13.3 billion in net assets. While that’s a drop in the bucket compared with a total bond market estimated at around $38 trillion, some analysts consider bond ETFs a market risk as they are more susceptible to hot money flows, potentially affecting the trading liquidity of underlying bonds. Around 37% of U.S. corporate credit is held by households and funds, according to RBS data from August.

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Everything must go.

Iran Matches Saudi Oil Discounts in Bear Market for Crude (Bloomberg)

Iran will sell its oil to Asia in November at the biggest discount in almost six years, matching cuts by Saudi Arabia as global crude benchmarks slide deeper into a bear market. State-run National Iranian Oil Co. cut official selling prices of its crude to buyers in Asia for November, two people with knowledge of the pricing decision said yesterday. The decrease came a week after Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest oil exporter, reduced the price of Arab Light crude for Asia to the lowest since December 2008. Brent crude, the international benchmark, fell to the lowest in almost four years today. “The timing of Iran’s price cuts makes the price war more and more probable,” Eugen Weinberg, head of commodities research at Commerzbank AG in Frankfurt, said by phone yesterday. “Iran is fully aware of the direction of and the mood in the market. Given that we’ve seen consecutive cuts, this would seem to be some kind of action and reaction.”

Middle Eastern oil producers are facing greater competition in Asia, their largest market. Cargoes from the U.S., Russia and Latin America are finding buyers there amid a surplus on international markets. The pace of demand growth is lower in the region as the economy slows in China, the world’s second-largest oil consumer. Futures for Brent and West Texas Intermediate, the U.S. benchmark, have both fallen more than 20% from their June peaks, meeting the common definition of a bear market. Front-month Brent traded as low as $88.11 a barrel today on the ICE Futures Europe exchange in London, the lowest since December 1, 2010. WTI dropped as low as $83.33 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the lowest since July 3, 2012.

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WTI is looking at $80 today. $84 now.

OPEC: Milder Winter To Pressure Oil Price Further (CNBC)

The oil price could face further downward pressure as a warmer winter is expected to hit demand further, the supplier of about 40% of the world’s oil warned. Official forecasts expect heating degree days in the U.S. to be 12% lower than last winter, implying lower demand, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) said in its monthly oil market report as Brent traded close to a four-year low. At the same time, OPEC said the weather has been less of a factor determining U.S. fuel consumption, as heating oil now contributes below 20% of the demand for “middle distillates” or medium weight refined oil products in the country.

Brent crude fell below $90 on Friday, as supply rises and markets digested more grim economic news, with analysts now slashing their oil price forecasts. The free fall in the oil price has increased pressure on OPEC members to take action to cut supply, which analysts said is unlikely before its meeting at the end of November. But Saudi Arabia has shown reluctance to cut production at the risk of losing market share to other countries.

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This is just too crazy. This is what business in America has come to.

US Shale Drillers Hugely Overestimate Reserves Before Investors (Bloomberg)

Lee Tillman, chief executive officer of Marathon Oil Corp., told investors last month that the company was potentially sitting on the equivalent of 4.3 billion barrels in its U.S. shale acreage. That number was 5.5 times higher than the proved reserves Marathon reported to federal regulators. Such discrepancies are rife in the U.S. shale industry. Drillers use bigger forecasts to sell the hydraulic fracturing boom to investors and to persuade lawmakers to lift the 39-year-old ban on crude exports. Sixty-two of 73 U.S. shale drillers reported one estimate in mandatory filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission while citing higher potential figures to the public, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Pioneer’s estimate was 13 times higher. Goodrich’s was 19 times. For Rice Energy, it was almost 27-fold. “They’re running a great risk of litigation when they don’t end up producing anything like that,” said John Lee, a University of Houston petroleum engineering professor who helped write the SEC rules and has taught reserves evaluation to a generation of engineers.

“If I were an ambulance-chasing lawyer, I’d get into this.” Experienced investors know the difference between the two numbers, Scott Sheffield, chairman and CEO of Irving, Texas-based Pioneer, said in an interview. “Shareholders understand,” Sheffield said. “We’re owned 95% by institutions. Now the American public is going into the mutual funds, so they’re trusting what those institutions are doing in their homework.” Investors poured $16.3 billion in the first seven months of the year into mutual funds and exchange-traded funds focused on energy companies, including drillers that create fractures in rocks by injecting fluid into cracks to enable more oil and gas to flow out of the formation. That’s almost twice as much as in the same period last year, bringing total assets to $128.2 billion, according to New York-based Strategic Insight.

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The TTIP is a malignant tumor growing secretly underneath our skins.

US Firms Could Make Billions From UK Via Secret TTIP Tribunals (Independent)

Britain faces a real risk of being ordered to pay vast sums to US multinationals under the controversial TTIP trade deal being negotiated between Washington and the EU, an analysis of similar agreements has revealed. The Government has repeatedly played down concerns that secret tribunals established by TTIP will lead to large numbers of American corporations suing the UK in trade disputes. But United Nations figures uncovered by The Independent show that US companies have made billions of dollars by suing other governments nearly 130 times in the past 15 years under similar free-trade agreements. In one case alone the US oil company Occidental Petroleum successfully sued the government of Ecuador for $1.8bn. A separate case claiming $6bn has also be filed. The tribunals are used to rule on disputes between nation states and aggrieved companies.

Details of these cases are often kept secret, but notorious precedents include the tobacco giant Philip Morris suing Australia and Uruguay for restricting advertising and putting health warnings on packets. TTIP has provoked storms of protest from European campaign groups and largely left-leaning politicians. On Saturday, protesters will stage a “day of action” against the proposed deal in hundreds of cities across the UK and Europe. Critics say the tribunals, held under the so-called Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) system, subvert democratic justice, giving power over foreign citizens to big companies. Hearings are held in private, in international courts at the World Bank in Washington DC, bypassing the legal system of the country being sued, meaning details are often impossible to uncover. In some cases the very existence of the case is not made public.

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Draghi, Larry Summers, everyone has a go at Germany. Which is really bad timing gicen recent economic data coming from Berlin.

Draghi Clashes With Germany’s Schaeuble Over Steps for Europe (Bloomberg)

European Central Bank President Mario Draghi and German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble differed over what further steps to take if the euro-area economy keeps weakening as the region came under renewed foreign pressure to revive growth. As the International Monetary Fund’s annual meeting in Washington began, Draghi pledged anew to loosen monetary policy more if needed and called on those governments with the room to ease fiscal policy to do so. By contrast, Schaeuble warned against U.S.-style quantitative easing and urged continued budgetary discipline. The differences demonstrate the lack of a common front in euro-area policy making as its economy continues to deteriorate and the IMF estimates there is as much as a 40% risk of a third recession since 2008. Finance ministers and central bankers from the Group of 20 economies meet today, and Europe’s economic performance will be among the issues discussed, officials said.

“There is a concern about a deflationary spiral, we aren’t predicting it, but we want to preclude it,” Canadian Finance Minister Joe Oliver told reporters. “No one is saying it’s a piece of cake, far from it.” The euro-area has re-emerged as the main concern of officials worldwide after its economy stalled in the second quarter and inflation slowed to the weakest in almost five years. The IMF this week cut its euro-area growth forecasts to 0.8% for 2014 and 1.3% next year and said the ECB should consider buying government debt. “More, we hope, will be done,” IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde told reporters. Speaking in Washington yesterday, Draghi reiterated his call on governments to overhaul their economies now and repeated the ECB is “ready to alter the size and/or the composition of our unconventional interventions, and therefore of our balance sheet, as required.”

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China is a danger first and foremost to itself, internal strife will rule the day. Its impact on the world will come after.

Is China’s Bubble the Next Financial Crisis? (Bloomberg)

Will China be the source of the next global financial disaster? The evidence increasingly offers reason for concern, though the nature of any calamity could be very different from what the world endured in 2008. At a time when consumers and governments in the U.S. and Europe have been trying – with limited success – to pare down or at least stabilize their debt burdens, China has been doing the opposite. Over the past five years, it has pumped more than $13 trillion of credit into its economy, in an effort to keep its growth rate up amid a weak global recovery. The Chinese credit boom has rapidly turned the country into one of the developing world’s most indebted, according to a new report from London’s Centre for Economic Policy Research. As of 2013, total private and government debt, excluding that of financial institutions, stood at 217% of gross domestic product, up from only 147% in 2008.

That’s more than in any major developing nation other than Hungary, though still significantly less than in advanced nations such as the U.S. or Japan. Such credit-fueled growth can’t be sustained for long without causing major distortions and setting the country up for a fall. The stimulus is already running into diminishing returns. Over the five years through 2013, government and private debt grew by about 3 yuan for each added yuan of economic activity, a level of credit intensity that the U.S. exceeded only in the years leading up to the 2008 crisis. As in the U.S., much of the money is going to borrowers with questionable ability to pay, fueling overbuilding and excess capacity.

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Nobel=clueless.

Health Of Global Economy Is Worrying: Stiglitz (CNBC)

The euro zone is “very much” at risk of a recession and U.S. continues to struggle with a mediocre recovery, said Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz, sounding the alarm on the deteriorating global economy. If Europe were to enter a recession it would likely be “relatively minor,” but persistent stagnation puts the single-currency bloc “on target for a lost decade,” he said. “To me, the problem is not whether [euro zone countries] are growing a little positive or negative, the real point is they are not back to where they should be,” Stiglitz, a professor of economics at Columbia University, told CNBC on Friday. Austerity is the wrong prescription for repairing the euro zone economy and underlies economic stagnation, he said.

“European leaders have consistently overestimated where the economy was going. Unfortunately, the leaders of Europe, in particular Germany, don’t seem to recognize that austerity is one of the reasons Europe is doing so poorly,” Stiglitz said. There is a lot of slack in the U.S. economy, Stiglitz said. “The U.S. has been moving along in this very mediocre way. What’s remarkable is how low the growth is in spite of the fact that… we have some very strong positives,” he said, referring to the country’s huge discoveries of natural gas and thriving high-tech sector. Furthermore, a stronger U.S. dollar may prove to be a bane for the economy, putting the country’s exporters at a competitive disadvantage, he said. Asked whether the world’s largest economy will be strong enough to justify an interest rate hike by mid-2015, he said “almost surely no.”

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Get out of the EU, amici.

Bad Loans At Italy Banks Up 20% In August To Record High (Reuters)

The Bank of Italy said on Thursday bad loans in the country rose 20% year-on-year in August reaching a new record high as the third-largest economy in the euro zone struggles to recover from recession. The loans that are least likely to be repaid were worth €173.9 billion ($222 billion) in August, the highest level since the start of the current statistical series in 1998, central bank data showed. In July, non-performing loans rose 20.5% to €172.4 billion. At the same time, lending to companies and families continued to contract, with loans to households down 0.8% in August after falling 0.7% a month earlier. Credit to non-financial companies fell 3.8% after a contraction of 3.9% in July.

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There’d better be no blood flowing in Catalunya, or the world’s Hemingways may once again descend on Spain.

Barcelona Stirs as Spain Warns of Separatist Tinderbox (Bloomberg)

Tensions are rising in Barcelona. As Catalan President Artur Mas goads the Spanish courts, threatening to defy their suspension of a Nov. 9 vote on independence, Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy is preparing measures to ensure he can retain control of the police in Catalonia. Politicians and civic leaders in the region who want to remain part of Spain say they have been threatened by separatists. “There’s been a cat let out of the bag,” said James Amelang, a professor of Spanish history at the Autonomous University of Madrid. “I really think the politicians might have lost their capacity to put it back.” Mas’s independence drive has been propelled by a surge of support on the streets, with hundreds of thousands attending peaceful rallies in Barcelona last month. As the date of the proposed vote approaches, officials in Madrid are preparing for when the force of Catalan separatism crashes into the immovable object of the Spanish constitution.

Spanish Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Garcia-Margallo warned last week that events in Catalonia could be moving too fast for the regional leader to control. Mas “may see the political process shift away from the institutions, and particularly the regional government, and move onto the streets, which is extremely dangerous,’ Garcia-Margallo told state radio broadcaster RTVE. ‘‘When institutions lose control, we head down an unknown path.’’ Spain’s national police force put more officers on the streets of the Catalan capital this month to beef up security at government buildings, a government press officer said on Oct. 1. Europa Press reported reinforcements total about 300 policemen. The central government has also drafted a law that would give officers from the regional police, the Mossos d’Esquadra controlled by Mas’s government, the chance to transfer to the national police force commanded by Madrid.

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Ho much longer will Britain stay in the EU?

UKIP: From ‘Clowns’ To Contenders (CNBC)

Just last year, Conservative Party grandee Kenneth Clarke described them as a “collection of clowns” – yet now they represent the greatest electoral challenge to the three main U.K. political parties for decades. The U.K. Independence Party (UKIP) – the closest the U.K. has to the U.S. tea party – has emerged from the fringes to the limelight, winning its first seat in the U.K. parliament in a by-election on Thursday. UKIP candidate Douglas Carswell won a by-election in Clacton, south east England by a majority of 12,404 to become the party’s first member of parliament. The election was triggered by incumbent member of Parliament (MP) Douglas Carswell’s defection from the Conservative Party to UKIP. The party briefly had one MP in 2008, when then-Conservative MP Bob Spink defected. Clacton – with its working class, elderly, white and economically left-behind population – was already identified as one of the constituencies most likely to vote UKIP in May’s general election by Matthew Goodwin and Rob Ford, authors of “Revolt on the Right” and experts on the party.

A by-election further north may actually be more concerning for the main political parties. In Heywood and Middleton, a safe Labour seat to date, the death of the local MP has triggered a vote. Labour candidate Liz McInnes won the vote by a margin of 617 — a far cry from a 5,971 majority at the 2010 general election. The results suggest that UKIP has made significant inroads there and gone beyond attracting only right-wing Conservatives, but also left-wing voters, who feel threatened by cheap labor from immigrants. “UKIP supporters are very pessimistic on the economy,” John Curtice, professor of politics at the University of Strathclyde, told CNBC. “The improvement in the economy hasn’t trickled down to the older working-class, and that’s UKIP’s constituency.”

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The new way to spell democracy.

Dark Money Groups Set Record in 2014 US Midterm Elections (Bloomberg)

The Internal Revenue Service calls them “social welfare” groups – they don’t disclose their donors and so far this cycle they’ve spent $100 million trying to influence elections. Never before have these types of organizations spent so much, so soon in Congressional races, according to a new analysis by the Center for Responsive Politics. If the past is precedent, that means roughly $200 million in dark money will go toward influencing the 2014 elections, CRP estimates. The trend means it’s harder than ever to know who the big spenders are or which interest is taking which side in an election. The social welfare groups, organized under section 501(c)(4) of the tax code, raise and spend unlimited amounts of money. Their cousins, super PACs, also raise and spend unlimited cash, but must disclose contributors. Some of the election cycle’s mega-groups toggle between using dark money groups and super-PACs depending on need and donor preference.

The David and Charles Koch-backed political network stopped using their dark money group for TV ads in the final 60 days of the cycle, and are now funding election spots with their new super PAC. Generally, the nonprofits spend in multiple races — but there are a few examples this year of 501(c)(4)s dedicated to one candidate. The highest profile is the Kentucky Opportunity Coalition, a nonprofit that started running commercials this summer to support Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. One hint as to who’s behind the group: The treasurer is listed as Caleb Crosby. He’s also the treasurer for Karl Rove’s American Crossroads – which just started running ads in Kentucky against McConnell’s Democratic opponent, Alison Lundergan Grimes. Democrats don’t tend to use dark money groups as much. They favor super PACs, and so far this year their super PACs are better funded than the Republicans’.

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It’s being reported as an unfortunate incident, but it says much more. The report by the Russian Union of Engineers has been totally silenced in the west.

MH-17 Report False Flag Exposed (Zero Hedge)

When exactly a month ago the supposedly objective, impartial Netherlands released its official, 34-page preliminary report of the MH-17 crash over Ukraine, presumably based on black box data, air traffic control records, and other “authentic, verified” information, there were precisely zero mentions of “oxygen”, “mask” or “oxygen mask.” Which is odd, because in what should become the biggest Freudian slip scandal in false-flag history, certainly since the Gulf of Tonkin, yesterday Dutch Foreign Minister Frans Timmermans accidentally revealed for the very first time ever, that one of the Australian passengers aboard the doomed airplane “appears to have donned an oxygen mask before the fatal crash, suggesting some on board might have been aware of their impending deaths, a Dutch official disclosed.”

Clearly a crucial aspect of the crash, as it points at the severity of the alleged explosion, yet one which was not noted until yesterday and which completely skipped the purvey of the official crash report for reasons unknown. Needless to say, this makes a complete mockery of the story that the plane had exploded upon impact with the “Russian” missile, and is why there was supposedly no trace of any impact on the flight’s black box recorder. Whether or not it also means that the alternative theory that a Ukraine jet had purposefully downed the Malaysian aircraft to serve as a pretext to implicate Russia, is unclear. But it also means that yet another conspiracy theory becomes fact: namely that whoever were the western powers who doctored and manipulated the “official” crash report of MH-17 to implicate Putin, not only lied but fabricated evidence.

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What happens when you don’t throw out in 1 generation the knowledge acquired in 1000.

The Amish Farmers Reinventing Organic Agriculture (Atlantic)

“In the Second World War,” Samuel Zook began, “my ancestors were conscientious objectors because we don’t believe in combat.” The Amish farmer paused a moment to inspect a mottled leaf on one of his tomato plants before continuing. “If you really stop and think about it, though, when we go out spraying our crops with pesticides, that’s really what we’re doing. It’s chemical warfare, bottom line.” Eight years ago, it was a war that Zook appeared to be losing. The crops on his 66-acre farm were riddled with funguses and pests that chemical treatments did little to reduce. The now-39-year-old talked haltingly about the despair he felt at the prospect of losing a homestead passed down through five generations of his family. Disillusioned by standard agriculture methods, Zook searched fervently for an alternative. He found what he was looking for in the writings of an 18-year-old Amish farmer from Ohio, a man named John Kempf. Kempf is the unlikely founder of Advancing Eco Agriculture, a consulting firm established in 2006 to promote science-intensive organic agriculture.

The entrepreneur’s story is almost identical to Zook’s. A series of crop failures on his own farm drove the 8th grade-educated Kempf to school himself in the sciences. For two years, he pored over research in biology, chemistry, and agronomy in pursuit of a way to save his fields. The breakthrough came from the study of plant immune systems which, in healthy plants, produce an array of compounds that are toxic to intruders. “The immune response in plants is dependent on well-balanced nutrition,” Kempf concluded, “in much the same way as our own immune system.” Modern agriculture uses fertilizer specifically to increase yields, he added, with little awareness of the nutritional needs of other organic functions. Through plant sap analysis, Kempf has been able to discover deficiencies in important trace minerals which he can then introduce into the soil. With plants able to defend themselves, pesticides can be avoided, allowing the natural predators of pests to flourish.

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Yes, the numbers keep getting worse.

The Ominous Math Of The Ebola Epidemic (WaPo)

When the experts describe the Ebola disaster, they do so with numbers. The statistics include not just the obvious ones, such as caseloads, deaths and the rate of infection, but also the ones that describe the speed of the global response. Right now, the math still favors the virus. Global health officials are looking closely at the “reproduction number,” which estimates how many people, on average, will catch the virus from each person stricken with Ebola. The epidemic will begin to decline when that number falls below one. A recent analysis estimated the number at 1.5 to 2. The number of Ebola cases in West Africa has been doubling about every three weeks. There is little evidence so far that the epidemic is losing momentum. “The speed at which things are moving on the ground, it’s hard for people to get their minds around. People don’t understand the concept of exponential growth,” said Tom Frieden, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“Exponential growth in the context of three weeks means: ‘If I know that X needs to be done, and I work my butt off and get it done in three weeks, it’s now half as good as it needs to be?’ Frieden warned Thursday that without immediate, concerted, bold action, the Ebola virus could become a global calamity on the scale of HIV. He spoke at a gathering of global health officials and government leaders at the World Bank headquarters in Washington. The president of Guinea was at the table, and the presidents of Liberia and Sierra Leone joined by video link. Amid much bureaucratic talk and table-thumping was an emerging theme: The virus is still outpacing the efforts to contain it. “The situation is worse than it was 12 days ago. It’s entrenched in the capitals. Seventy% of the people [who become infected] are definitely dying from this disease, and it is accelerating in almost all settings,” Bruce Aylward, assistant director general of the World Health Organization, told the group.

Aylward had come from West Africa only hours earlier. He offered three numbers: 70, 70 and 60. To bring the epidemic under control, officials should ensure that at least 70% of Ebola-victim burials are conducted safely, and that at least 70 percent of infected people are in treatment, within 60 days, he said. More numbers came from Ernest Bai Koroma, president of Sierra Leone: The country desperately needs 750 doctors, 3,000 nurses, 1,500 hygienists, counselors and nutritionists. The numbers in this crisis are notoriously squishy, however. Epidemiological data is sketchy at best. No one really knows exactly how big the epidemic is, in part because there are areas in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea where disease detectives cannot venture because of safety concerns. The current assumption is that for every four known Ebola cases, about six more go unreported.

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There is very little out there that doesn’t signal a gross incompetence, lack of urgency and lack of understanding.

Ebola Is ‘Entrenched And Accelerating’ In West Africa (BBC)

The World Health Organization (WHO) has warned that Ebola is now entrenched in the capital cities of all three worst-affected countries and is accelerating in almost all settings. WHO deputy head Bruce Aylward warned that the world’s response was not keeping up with the disease in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. The three countries have appealed for more aid to help fight the disease. The outbreak has killed more than 3,860 people, mainly in West Africa. More than 200 health workers are among the victims. Speaking on Thursday, Mr Aylward said the situation was worse than it was 12 days ago. “The disease is entrenched in the capitals, 70% of the people affected are definitely dying from this disease, and it is accelerating in almost all of the settings,” he said. Meanwhile in Spain, seven more people are being monitored in hospital for Ebola. They include two hairdressers who came into contact with Teresa Romero, a Madrid nurse looked after an Ebola patient who had been repatriated from West Africa. She is now very ill and reported to be at serious risk of dying.

Elsewhere: The UK is investigating reports a Briton suspected of having the disease has died in Macedonia, though Macedonia’s health ministry says there are “high chances” this is not a case of the disease Britain is to begin enhanced screening for Ebola in people travelling from affected countries, the government announces. The US is introducing new security measures to screen passengers arriving from Ebola-affected countries in West Africa at five major US airports. In Texas, a county sheriff deputy was quarantined after visiting the home of the first person diagnosed with Ebola on US soil, who later died from the virus. The medical charity Medecins Sans Frontieres reported a sharp increase of Ebola cases in the Guinean capital, Conakry, dashing hopes that the disease was being stabilised there.

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