Sep 282021
 
 September 28, 2021  Posted by at 8:49 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , ,  64 Responses »


Pablo Picasso Tête de femme 1926

 

Covid-19 Mortality Risk Correlates Inversely With Vitamin D3 Status (medrxiv)
Spike Protein, Dead Cells And Male Fertility (Chesnut)
The Crazy Is Strong In This One… (Denninger)
Pfizer CEO: “Normal Life” Won’t Return Without Regular COVID Vaccinations (SN)
The Big Tell (Kunstler)
Biden Says US Will Have A ‘Problem’ Until 98% Of Americans Are Vaccinated (RT)
Gov. Hochul: New York To Deploy National Guard To Replace Unvaxxed Nurses (RCP)
NY Healthcare Workers Who Refuse Vaccine Get No Unemployment Benefits (JTN)
British Military To Deploy Trucks & Drivers Amid Fuel Supply Shortage (RT)
AZ Audit Could Not Find the Identity of 86,391 Voters (GP)

 

 

 

 

Veritas

 

 

Aussie Senators
https://twitter.com/i/status/1442589710942027783

 

 

How many lives could have been saved?

Covid-19 Mortality Risk Correlates Inversely With Vitamin D3 Status (medrxiv)

Background Much research shows that blood calcidiol (25(OH)D3) levels correlate strongly with SARS-CoV-2 infection severity. There is open discussion regarding whether low D3 is caused by the infection or if deficiency negatively affects immune defense. The aim of this study was to collect further evidence on this topic.

Methods Systematic literature search was performed to identify retrospective cohort as well as clinical studies on COVID-19 mortality rates versus D3 blood levels. Mortality rates from clinical studies were corrected for age, sex and diabetes. Data were analyzed using correlation and linear regression.

Results One population study and seven clinical studies were identified, which reported D3 blood levels pre-infection or on the day of hospital admission. They independently showed a negative Pearson correlation of D3 levels and mortality risk (r(17)=-.4154, p=.0770/r(13)=-.4886, p=.0646). For the combined data, median (IQR) D3 levels were 23.2 ng/ml (17.4 – 26.8), and a significant Pearson correlation was observed (r(32)=-.3989, p=.0194). Regression suggested a theoretical point of zero mortality at approximately 50 ng/ml D3.

Conclusions The two datasets provide strong evidence that low D3 is a predictor rather than a side effect of the infection. Despite ongoing vaccinations, we recommend raising serum 25(OH)D levels to above 50 ng/ml to prevent or mitigate new outbreaks due to escape mutations or decreasing antibody activity.

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“..the body being unable to clear the massive number of dead cells caused by the spike protein…”

Spike Protein, Dead Cells And Male Fertility (Chesnut)

1) The continuous presence of spike protein will almost certainly cause male sterility via m6A methylation. Metformin suppresses m6A methylation! Covid-19 is not a blood vessel disease. It is a disease of impaired metabolism and autophagy (inducing senescence) caused by the spike protein’s massive upregulation of m6a methylation. The endothelial dysfunction is from the spike protein’s suppression of autophagy and simultaneous attack on ACE2 receptors. Epigenetic changes are reversible. A constant presence of spike protein will maintain the deleterious environment.

Once again, the medical establishment is completely incorrect as to the origins of the bioweapon that is SARS-CoV-2 and the disease that it causes. We are dealing with a VERY sophisticated bioweapon that impairs autophagy, metabolism and ion channels. I believe the hypercoagulation being observed is from the body being unable to clear the massive number of dead cells caused by the spike protein. The spike protein both causes massive damage and prevents its “cleanup. “

It has been determined that SARS-CoV-2 infection triggers a global increase in host m6A methylome, exhibiting altered localization and motifs of m6A methylation in mRNAs. M6A Methylation is also a hallmark of aging and is involved STERILITY. m6A modification could alter testosterone synthesis and develop oligospermia or azoospermia. These findings emphasize the essential role of m6A RNA modification in the regulation of autophagy and testosterone synthesis. THIS MAY RENDER MALES STERILE. As a result of increased m6A, m6A levels are increased on the mRNAs of ATG genes, and the transcripts of these genes became highly susceptible to degradation. Hence autophagy is suppressed. Recent research reveals that both m6A demethylases (FTO and ALKBH5) could positively regulate autophagy and showed that m6A modification is inversely associated with the autophagy process.

Several studies have suggested that there is a correlation between autophagy and the endothelial NO function. It has been shown that autophagy induction is associated with increased eNOS expression, whereas decreased autophagy is accompanied by down-regulation of the eNOS expression. It has been observed that in COVID-19 pathophysiological alterations lead to an imbalance NO production. Also, reduction of eNOS-derived NO production causes endothelial dysfunction, which represents a risk factor for severe COVID-19. It is without a doubt that repeated exposure to the spike protein must be avoided. Period.

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“..every “infection” reported now, over 100,000 a day, is another person who has no reason to ever accept a jab.”

The Crazy Is Strong In This One… (Denninger)

Those who have refused thus far fall into three broad categories:

• They’ve seen others they know get the jab and have a very bad outcome. They’re unwilling because they know damn well its dangerous as they’ve seen it with their own eyes. You cannot bull**** those people with “safe” since they’ve watched a loved one, close associate or someone in their immediate vicinity get hammered after taking it, and they’re not going to put their own ass in that position. No way, no how. They may in fact be willing to kill anyone who tries to enforce such a mandate on them because, as they see it, taking the jab means they’re dead already, so there is no downside to taking you to Hell with them. I cannot argue with that logic. Just last afternoon I saw an ambulance outside a local drugstore that dispenses jabs while waiting for a traffic light; the doors were open and the lights on. That wasn’t a “pleasure call” and the several hundred people who witnessed it while at that intersection knew damn well what probably happened. Nobody who sees a life-threatening or fatal incident associated with these jabs and has more than 2 firing neurons in their head is going to allow you anywhere near them with a needle.

• They’re presumptively immune as they’ve had Covid-19 and recovered. The CDC claims that, as of this point, that’s 41 million Americans. For them there is zero benefit, prospective or otherwise, to taking the jab and they know it. Even Washington’s much-ballyhooed “mandate” to take the smallpox inoculation by his troops (which killed a decent number of them, by the way) is bull**** for those individuals; Washington did not inoculate himself because he previously had smallpox and survived. He wasn’t stupid and neither are these people. This is not a small percentage of the population; by the NEJM numbers about 20% of the US Population as of May had been infected with and recovered from Covid-19. Today, given the “summer surge”, that is very likely to be 25% or better and I would not take a bet it’s less than 1 in 3 since the CDC’s “tested positive” numbers exclude a huge number of people who were never tested but conclusively had Covid-19. Incidentally, I’m among them, as I’ve detailed in these pages yet neither I or two other close associates are in the CDC’s numbers as none of us were ever tested or saw a physician for the disease yet we all, quite-clearly, had it and recovered. Not accounting for that is criminally insane on the part of the Administration and legally, morally and ethically unsupportable. The “mandate” will, I predict, fail for this reason alone in the fullness of time and legal challenge. If I can self-attest to having had chicken pox (and I most-certainly can) then there’s no reason someone can’t in this case.

• They’ve seen others they personally know who got the jab and then got infected and hammered. They know the claim that it “prevents severe disease or death” is bull****. They’ve seen with their own eyes a close associate or family member go from no symptoms to near death in a couple of days or less and know damn well what an unvaccinated person gets when they’re infected and gets hammered as we’ve all seen that on the TeeVee, from the punditry and in the statistics; typically you get the virus, develop symptoms and a week or more later you’re in bad enough shape to go to the ER. When someone they know, who was jabbed, goes down the ****ter in 24 hours that irretrievably blows up any claim of “effective” and raises the specter of the jab making the infection worse. Those people are in the same bucket as the first if you try to force them to take it as they’ve seen what happened to someone else.

Biden’s problem with these “mandates” is that both the second and third group are rapidly growing in size; every “infection” reported now, over 100,000 a day, is another person who has no reason to ever accept a jab. Every ten days 1 million people are added to the group that have every legal, ethical, moral and medical reason to say “**** you!” to any Covid-19 jab mandate; these people got Covid-19 and survived; they have immunity and thus the jab offers them nothing. Push them hard enough and some percentage of them may go medieval on anyone and everyone they assign blame to and no, there aren’t enough cops to stop that (never mind that some cops may be among them since they’ve been exposed and infected as “essential workers” for the last 18 months!) if that happens.

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Don’t.

Pfizer CEO: “Normal Life” Won’t Return Without Regular COVID Vaccinations (SN)

The CEO of the pharmaceutical giant Pfizer says that normal life will return within a year, but not for those who don’t have regular COVID-19 vaccinations. During an appearance on ABC This Week with George Stephanapoulos, Albert Bourla was asked about when he foresaw the end of the pandemic. “Within a year, I think we will be able to come back to normal life,” said Bourla, although he made it very clear that this statement only applies to those who are prepared to take regular coronavirus booster shots. “I don’t think that this means that variants will not be continuing coming,” Bourla added. “And I don’t think that this means that we should be able to live our lives without having vaccinations, basically.” Bourla said that the “most likely scenario” was “annual re-vaccinations” due to the emergence of “new variants.”


The Pfizer’s CEO’s comments on annual vaccinations are interesting given that the FDA has so far only approved booster shots for elderly people and “high risk individuals.” Bourla’s rhetoric is similar to that espoused by Moderna CEO Stephane Bancel, who said last week that even younger people will have to get vaccine booster shots at least once every three years. This once again underscores how a two tier society is being created where only those who submit to regular shots will be able to enjoy a relatively normal lifestyle. For those who continue to refuse to be vaccinated, travel, employment and potentially even basic leisure activities will continue to be curtailed, leaving them in a de facto state of lockdown indefinitely.

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“Is that what a “vaccine” is supposed to do? Enhance disease transmission? If the public is not already bamboozled enough, that one will probably seal the deal.”

The Big Tell (Kunstler)

Meanwhile, New York state’s vax mandate for all health care workers goes into effect today. The order will cripple health care for certain now in a state already suffering crisis-level short-staffing in hospitals — largely due to the years-long effort of for-profit hospitals to shed employees, especially nurses, while padding the multi-million-dollar salaries of executives who run hospital conglomerates. Andrew Cuomo’s replacement, the disastrous new governor Kathy Hochul, declared hilariously last week that health care workers fired for vax refusal can be replaced by workers from foreign lands.

Of course, the US health care establishment was already imploding under the weight of embedded racketeering, and the mandated shots to workers will now deliver the coup-de-grace. This is on top of the fact that the public’s trust and respect for doctors is starting to edge out even its low esteem for the politicians who assist these racketeering operations. The medical profession that took for its motto first do no harm looks increasingly like an accomplice to mass murder — suppressing effective early treatments of Covid, promoting the known iatrogenic fiascos of intubation and Remdesivir, continuing to use the discredited PCR tests, and utilizing a VAERS system with such a defective website that doctors can’t be bothered to even report harmful reactions to vaccines while the medical bureaucrats hide and game whatever data leaks through their mighty filters. Not to mention developing the Covid-19 bioweapon in the first place and then a toxic vaccine to neatly finish the job.

In another pandemic development, CNN’s go-to doctor and vaccine pusher, Leana Wen of George Washington University, declared startlingly that vaccinated people are now a threat to the unvaccinated because the vaxed carry high viral loads, making them efficient Covid-19 spreaders. Is that what a “vaccine” is supposed to do? Enhance disease transmission? If the public is not already bamboozled enough, that one will probably seal the deal.

Which leads the non-bamboozled to suspect that we are in the midst of a monumental two-year psy-op by malevolent political forces bent on the totalistic domination of daily life in order to change it from the top down, mainly against the peoples’ wishes. There are many theories as to why. The most popular one is that the economic elite want to greatly reduce the global population for the good of the planet. That would be a pretty severe project if true. It’s hard to conceive of such megalomania outside a James Bond movie. But otherwise, you’re left with the somewhat unsatisfying conclusion that, as the old political weasel-phrase goes, mistakes were made. Yeah, for sure, but after making the first half-dozen or so mistakes, you’d think that honorable people would just cop to their errors and change course. That this hasn’t happened is the Big Tell.

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Note how the number keeps rising.

Biden Says US Will Have A ‘Problem’ Until 98% Of Americans Are Vaccinated (RT)

US President Joe Biden had his third dose of Pfizer’s Covid-19 vaccine administered live before the White House press corps, insisting the ‘unvaccinated’ were a problem for America and urging everyone to get their shots. Biden was injected on Monday at a televised event inside the Eisenhower Executive Office building, telling the reporters he was doing so because the regulators had declared the Pfizer-made boosters “safe and effective.” A CNN reporter pointed out that Monday’s booster event was historic – the first time a sitting president was getting the coronavirus vaccine on camera. While Biden took both of his original doses on camera, that was before he was sworn in. His predecessor Donald Trump, who recovered from Covid-19 in October 2020, was reportedly vaccinated before he left the White House, but not publicly.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommended the boosters last week, but rejected the White House’s call to apply them to the general adult population. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) went a step further, expanding the booster advisory to “those in high risk occupational and institutional settings” on Thursday. Biden doubled down on calling the current situation with the coronavirus in the US “a pandemic of the unvaccinated,” and repeated a joke he made on Friday about being over 65 and therefore needing a booster shot. “Please, please do the right thing. Please get the shot,” he said at the event. “It can save your life. It can save the lives of those around you. And it’s easy, accessible, and it’s free.”

Asked how many Americans needed to be vaccinated, he said maybe 98%. “But I’m not the scientist. I think one thing is for certain. A quarter of the country can’t go unvaccinated and us not continue to have a problem,” he added. “About 23% haven’t gotten any shots, and that distinct minority is causing an awful lot of damage for the rest of the country,” he said. While some praised Biden for answering questions “all the way through” and not flinching at the needle, others pointed out that he refused to answer questions about the border crisis. According to the Department of Homeland Security, around 12,000 migrants from Haiti who had come across the US-Mexico border illegally have been released inside the country, though their makeshift camp under a bridge in Del Rio, Texas has been dismantled.

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Hochul

How cuckoo is this woman really?

Gov. Hochul: New York To Deploy National Guard To Replace Unvaxxed Nurses (RCP)

New York Gov. Hochul said Friday that the state will deploy the National Guard to fill expected staff shortages as unvaccinated nurses and hospital workers are fired effective tonight. “Our top priority remains staying ahead of this constantly changing virus and protecting New Yorkers with effective, long-lasting vaccines,” said Gov. Kathy Hochul. “As we’ve heard from our federal and State medical and health experts, as with many other vaccines, the protection from the COVID-19 vaccine can wane over time. A booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccine will help particularly at-risk New Yorkers stay protected from the virus for longer. While the focus of our vaccination effort remains ensuring all unvaccinated New Yorkers get vaccinated, those who are booster eligible should waste no time receiving maximum protection from COVID-19 as soon as possible.”

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But of course. Worked their asses off for 20 months and here’s the reward.

NY Healthcare Workers Who Refuse Vaccine Get No Unemployment Benefits (JTN)

Health-care employees in New York who are fired for refusing to comply with a state law requiring them to have the COVID-19 vaccine to continue working will not be able to collect unemployment benefits, according to the New York Department of Labor. Starting Monday, hospitals and nursing homes workers across the state must have received at least one dose of the vaccine. And employees working in home care, hospice and adult care facilities must be vaccinated by October 7. The mandate also applies to all out-of-state and contract medical staff who practice in New York, unless they present a doctor-approved request for medical accommodation.


“Workers in a healthcare facility, nursing home, or school who voluntarily quit or are terminated for refusing an employer-mandated vaccination” are not eligible for unemployment insurance because the employer has a “compelling interest” for its employees to be vaccinated, reads the New York Department of Labor website, according to Insider. New York Democratic Gov. Kathy Hochul has said she is prepared to call in medically trained National Guard members and workers outside the state to aid with a potential shortage of healthcare workers once the mandate takes effect and some people are no longer eligible to come to work, Insider also reports.

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A winter of disconnect.

British Military To Deploy Trucks & Drivers Amid Fuel Supply Shortage (RT)

The British army could soon deploy its own fuel tankers to fill a major logistics gap caused by a lack of lorries and drivers, with some petrol stations running dry in some areas as deliveries have all but ground to a halt. UK Defence Secretary Ben Wallace announced the plans on Monday night, with the government stating that army tanker drivers would receive specialized training to “enable them to seamlessly work with industry to address the supply chain pressures.” “The men and women of our armed forces stand ready to alleviate the transport pressures where they are felt most. That is why I have authorised their increased preparedness so they are ready to respond if needed,” he said, as quoted by Sky News.

The announcement comes after several days of panic-buying across the UK, driven by fears of a possible fuel shortage, leaving some stations out of gasoline due to the sudden surge in demand. British officials, however, insist there is no supply shortage, but rather a lack of delivery trucks and drivers needed to distribute the fuel. Before Wallace’s statement, Environment Secretary George Eustice denied reports of any army involvement, saying that there were “no plans at the moment” to do such a thing, though he did acknowledge that military personnel would remain on “standby.” Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng submitted a Military Aid to the Civil Authorities (MACA) request to the army to secure drivers if needed.

He argued that while “the UK continues to have strong supplies of fuel,” the request was a “sensible, precautionary step,” adding that he expects demand to return to normal levels “in the coming days.” Nonetheless he said that the government is “aware of supply chain issues at fuel station forecourts and are taking steps to ease these as a matter of priority.” If required, the deployment of military personnel will provide the supply chain with additional capacity as a temporary measure to help ease pressures caused by spikes in localised demand for fuel. Echoing Kwarteng, Eustice noted that the spate of panic-buying, which continued through the weekend, was now “calming down” and that consumers were returning to “normal buying habits.”

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“If you can’t be found using these credentials, something is definitely wrong.”

AZ Audit Could Not Find the Identity of 86,391 Voters (GP)

The Arizona audit could not find an identity match on 86,391 people. This is disclosed on Page 56 of the “Results Details” report. These Maricopa voters cast ballots in Nov 2020 and don’t seem to exist. The ones registered as Democrat or selected no party affiliation represent a whopping 73.8% of these unknown voters. That’s 63,757 ballots. Not selecting a party makes monitoring of nefarious registrations much harder as everything not R or D is bulked together as “Other”. Even the new State voter registration form now only has only 3 categories (R, D, Other) and some registration reporting reduced to similar. Cyber Ninja’s used Melissa Personator which is arguably the best commercial service to validate U.S. or Canadian identities.


It scours private and government databases including USPS and Social Security Administration. Cyber Ninja’s oddly concludes most of these “unknowns” might be real people that just have limited public records. Our name, DOB, SS#, and address are in every State and Fed database. If you can’t be found using these credentials, something is definitely wrong. The Ninja’s didn’t consider Maricopa’s history, it’s registration battles, or issues with non-citizen voters. They make no consideration the database might have been manipulated but know it was hacked Nov. 5th 2020. Had the Senate subpoenaed Maricopa’s VRAS servers and tasked CyFIR to investigate, we might know a whole lot more.

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Another day in Australia

 

 

 

 

 

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Sep 242021
 
 September 24, 2021  Posted by at 8:40 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,  78 Responses »


Vincent van Gogh A Restaurant at Asnieres 1887

 

Why Are We Vaccinating Children Against Covid-19? (Elsevier)
Full Covid Genome Found In Stools – Meaning For Prevention And Treatments (VC)
Directed Evolution I – When Applied To People Is Eugenics (Anandamide)
Directed Evolution II – Gates Got Your Tongue? (Anandamide)
‘Covid-19 Will Become Like Common Cold’ By Next Spring, Say Experts (INews)
Covid-19 Pandemic Will Be Over In A Year – Moderna CEO (RT)
You, In Fact, Have ALL The Power. Use It (Denninger)
Scientists Slam Chris Whitty For Scare-mongering Over Unjabbed Children (DM)
Americans Have No Clue What the True COVID Numbers Are (Mercola)
DeSantis Acquires New Monoclonal Antibodies From UK Drug Firm (JTN)
YouTube Promises Pullback On Covid Censorship (JTN)
Arizona Audit for Dummies (Ivory Hecker)
Agustín Carstens: Would You Buy A Dieting Régime From This Man? (Ward)

 

 

Perth nurses

 

 

Rebel News Melbourne

 

 

 

 

Toronto

 

 

Israel

 

 

The second narrative-damning report published by Science Direct in a week.

Robert W Malone, MD: “In summary, the value of these COVID-19 inoculations is not obvious from a cost-benefit perspective for the most vulnerable age demographic, and is not obvious from any perspective for the least vulnerable age demographic.”

“Thus, our extremely conservative estimate for risk-benefit ratio is about 5/1. In plain English, people in the 65+ demographic are five times as likely to die from the inoculation as from COVID-19 under the most favorable assumptions!

Why Are We Vaccinating Children Against Covid-19? (Elsevier)

Adequate safety testing of the COVID-19 inoculations would have provided a distribution of the outcomes to be expected from ‘lighting the match’. Since adequate testing was not performed, we have no idea how many combustible materials are on the floor, and what the expected outcomes will be from ‘lighting the match’. The injection goes two steps further than the wild virus because 1) it contains the instructions for making the spike protein, which several experiments are showing can cause vascular and other forms of damage, and 2) it bypasses many front-line defenses of the innate immune system to enter the bloodstream directly in part. Unlike the virus example, the injection ensures there will always be some combustible materials on the floor, even if there are no other toxic exposures or behaviors.

In other words, the spike protein and the surrounding LNP are toxins with the potential to cause myriad short-, mid-, and long-term adverse health effects even in the absence of other contributing factors! Where and when these effects occur will depend on the biodistribution of the injected material. Pfizer’s own biodistribution studies have shown the injected material can be found in myriad critical organs throughout the body, leading to the possibility of multi-organ failure. And these studies were from a single injection. Multiple injections and booster shots may have cumulative effects on organ distributions of inoculant! The COVID-19 reported deaths are people who died with COVID-19, not necessarily from COVID-19. Likewise, the VAERS deaths are people who have died following inoculation, not necessarily from inoculation.

As stated before, CDC showed that 94 % of the reported deaths had multiple comorbidities, thereby reducing the CDC’s numbers attributed strictly to COVID-19 to about 35,000 for all age groups. Given the number of high false positives from the high amplification cycle PCR tests, and the willingness of healthcare professionals to attribute death to COVID-19 in the absence of tests or sometimes even with negative PCR tests, this 35,000 number is probably highly inflated as well. On the latter issue, both Virginia Stoner [85] and Jessica Rose [86] have shown independently that the deaths following inoculation are not coincidental and are strongly related to inoculation through strong clustering around the time of injection. Our independent analyses of the VAERS database reported in Appendix 1 confirmed these clustering findings.

Additionally, VAERS historically has under-reported adverse events by about two orders-of-magnitude, so COVID-19 inoculation deaths in the short-term could be in the hundreds of thousands for the USA for the period mid-December 2020 to the end of May 2021, potentially swamping the real COVID-19 deaths. Finally, the VAERS deaths reported so far are for the very short term. We have no idea what the death numbers will be in the intermediate and long-term; the clinical trials did not test for those. The clinical trials used a non-representative younger and healthier sample to get EUA for the injection. Following EUA, the mass inoculations were administered to the very sick (and first responders) initially, and many died quite rapidly. However, because the elderly who died following COVID-19 inoculation were very frail with multiple comorbidities, their deaths could easily be attributed to causes other than the injection (as should have been the case for COVID-19 deaths as well).

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HCQ and IVM.

Full Covid Genome Found In Stools – Meaning For Prevention And Treatments (VC)

“You heard it here first, COVID-20,” said Dr. Sabine Hazan on Sept. 16 during a discussion with the Ventura County Reporter at the offices of Ventura Clinical Trials and ProgenaBiome in Ventura. “We are already starting to see COVID-20-associated diarrhea and rectal bleeding.” She agreed to talk about findings in a ProgenaBiome report currently undergoing peer review. It is the first study she is aware of that finds the entire genome — along with 33 different mutations — in the stools of those with SARS-CoV-2. The paper, “Detection of SARS-CoV-2 from Patient Fecal Samples by Whole Genome Sequencing,” authored by Dr. Andreas Papaoutis, Jordan Daniels, Skylar Steinberg, Dr. Brad Barrows and Dr. Sabine Hazan (all with ProgenaBiome) and Dr. Thomas Borody and Dr. Siba Dolai of the Center for Digestive Diseases. (1)

That paper reports on the existence of hundreds of thousands of replicas of the complete genome of the virus in the stool samples of people who tested positive by nasal swab PCR testing, both symptomatic and asymptomatic. By using Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) the researchers identified 33 unique variations of the virus, indicating a high propensity for mutations, potentially making treatment by something as fine-tuned as a vaccine extremely challenging. The report also shows the initial findings of the clinical trial studying whether a combination treatment protocol called HAZDPaC (which includes hydroxychloroquine, azithromycin, zinc and Vitamins C and D) or high dosages of Vitamin C, D and Zinc alone (the placebo in the trial) may prove effective in eradicating the virus from the gut, where it could potentially cause long-lasting problems if left to “percolate.”

Eleven of 14 trial participants were positive (nasal swab PCR) for the virus. Eight of those people were not treated and the full virus genome was found in each of their stool samples. A total of 33 unique mutations of the virus were identified in those eight participants. The remaining three people who had the virus were treated for 10 days with HAZDPaC or high dosages of Vitamin C; when retested, they had no trace of the virus in their stools. Three additional trial participants served as the “control.” Two were negative (nasal swab PCR); one was not tested. None were treated and no virus was detected in stools. Until the report is printed as a peer reviewed paper (currently in process) it cannot be relied upon for other clinical study or purposes. But Hazan is confident of the findings’ ultimate confirmation through peer review.

[..] The initial protocols used in the FDA trial were formulated as a hypothesis to reach the ACE-2 receptors but also to destroy the virus. The treatment ProgenaBiome is using occupies those spots. Zinc fills up the ACE-2 receptors so there is nowhere for the virus to “park,” helping to maintain the gut barrier. Vitamins C and D boost the good gut bacteria. Hydroxychloroquine’s role is to raise the pH of the lysosome, or stomach of the cells. “If you change the pH in lysosome with medication, you change the pH…to 9 or 9.5. It’s a super alkaline environment and the virus disappears, it cannot replicate on the next cell. And so you stop the reproduction.” (2) With nowhere to go and unable to replicate, the virus is quickly evacuated by the bowel.

“At least that’s the hypothesis from the mechanism of action of all these products brought together as one formula. It’s not a one-pill solution,” said Hazan. She thinks earlier studies involving hydroxychloroquine were flawed because they were only using that one drug approach.

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“To supercharge such a narrow directed evolution experiment, it is best to lower the defenses of the host. Tie all of their foot soldiers boots together.”

Directed Evolution I – When Applied To People Is Eugenics (Anandamide)

Is there Spike Escape? This is hot debate stimulated by Geert Vanden Bossche. The critiques levied against his hypothesis (March 15th) are not completely compelling as more evidence matures demonstrating the waning protection of the vaccines and frequent transmission of the virus in Israel, Iceland and many other highly vaccinated countries. The premise of the argument against Geert appear to be rooted in a technophiles desire to always change the treatment. This is a desire to obtain the ultimate ring of power: A vax platform one can continually update (with no liability) and mandate to return freedom to its subjugates. I am more optimistic than Geert in that I believe many jurisdictions have enough natural immunity to thwart this experiment and the pandemic will cool down once all the vaccinated experience and develop immunity to the full 29kb virus.

So do we have Spike Escape? A frequent question these days but more akin to a retrospective “Oh Shit” inquiry. While it is deserving of its own captain obvious meme, it is important to explain why this is not only the expected outcome but how re-applying the same selective agent will only accelerate the escape. The more parsimonious response: If you can’t detect selection against the spike RNA sequence, you have no basis upon which to claim your vaccine has influence over this evolutionary experiment we have engaged in. This isn’t a small experiment. This is the grandest medical experiment ever imagined so it is important we reflect on the type of selection being applied.

These are non-sterilizing vaccines. There is a difference between being infected (RNA+) and being infectious (Virus+ and shedding). Non-Sterilizing vaccines leave the breakthrough patients as both. They can be PCR positive with a new virus. It can be replicative and have similar Ct scores as the unvaccinated control and the vaccinated can still transmit the virus. There are suggested benefits of these vaccines ( and risks) but one such benefit is not the reduction of RNA polymerase activity and evolution of the virus. The selection being applied is very narrow compared to how our bodies traditionally fight viruses and how most vaccines prior to 2020 fight viruses. 4,284 bases of this ~29,500 base pair virus (14% of the virus) encode the spike protein of a spike-only vaccine. This is a very narrow pressure point and is akin to using low dose antibiotics across the whole population… all at the same time.

In other evolutionary fights in medicine, narrow is naive. We fight sepsis with broad scale antibiotics. We fight cancer with cocktails that attack multiple pathways to prevent mutagensis. These are genomic diseases and one trick pony solutions are a hubristic trainwreck. To supercharge such a narrow directed evolution experiment, it is best to lower the defenses of the host. Tie all of their foot soldiers boots together. Get a good head start for your RdRp polymerase to kick into high gear. Promiscuous copying of viral genomes with low fidelity and a pinpointed selective pressure on a narrow region of the genome.

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“More than one way to skin a cat…. but dont skin cats!! We kill bats.”

Directed Evolution II – Gates Got Your Tongue? (Anandamide)

This is an excellent presentation on the evolutionary trajectory of SARs-CoVs-2 and just as fascinating as the genomics, is the content that is explicitly not spoken about. You see, NextStrain and GISAID all have alot of uncle Bills grant money and he loves vaccines so much, that he has over $100M in BioNtech stock and CureVac stock tucked away in the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. As a result, many people in the Epi space we affectionately refer to as the Nerd Sweater Mafia…. they know to never speak ill of vaccines. See if you can find the word vaccine anywhere in the first 24 minutes of this very well done analysis on the directed evolution of this virus. The fascinating aspect of this presentation is that it highlights the mutational spectrum of C19 during 2021 and it is as clear as day that there is a massive enrichment for mutations in the spike protein compared to other parts of the genome.

There is also a lot of squid ink diverting the viewers attention as to the cause of this. Let’s look at the running hypothesis they float to explain such an enrichment of mutagenesis in spike. 1.Natural selection against Host immunity. Note the language.. not vaccine immunity.. host immunity. Blame the victim some more and redirect attention from the obvious selective pressure going on with “Spike only vaccination” to those immunocompromised people (the ones you need to get vaccinated to save). Note at 8:52 he mentions this is speculative as they didn’t see any of this happening in the Spring 2020 during the ‘first’ pandemic wave. Remember this point as the emergence date of C19 continues to back into October 2019 with WIV employees losing their sense of smell. The first wave (in Trevor’s eyes) is only the wave he could see with qPCR but he forgets that viruses with R0 this high are unlikely to be at their first rodeo when we wise up and point our sequencers at them.

They begin to see spike mutagenesis in the fall of 2020 but it really takes off in 2021. This is where they will play their magic tricks. They will claim this was witnessed before the vax roll out therefore the vax is innocent. Watch them like a hawk. A fly in their ointment: You will also see them speak about convergent evolution being evident (min 20+) in the data which refutes their own chronological argument that attempts to blame this on pre-vax “partially immune” people. Convergent evolution is where the same mutations appear to evolve independently over and over again around the world as similar selective pressures are applied. The polymerase doesn’t make random errors. It has propensity to make some of the same errors due to the sequence context of the virus.

This means an ORF8 deletion can occur in Africa and Australia independently without anyone traveling between the two continents to spread it there. There are also similar selective pressures being applied in geographically distant places. In some of these cases, we can see different RNA variants emerge across the globe which may differ at a RNA sequence level but code for the same amino acid change. Let’s take the UUC codon for Phenylalanine. You can mutate it to UUA or UUG and still code for the same alternative amino acid Leucine. More than one way to skin a cat…. but dont skin cats!! We kill bats.

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6 more months of misery.

“If you look at the trajectory we’re on, we’re a lot better off than we were six months ago… I think we’re over the worst of it now.”

‘Covid-19 Will Become Like Common Cold’ By Next Spring, Say Experts (INews)

Covid-19 could soon resemble the common cold as the virus weakens and people’s immunity is boosted by vaccines and exposure, two leading experts have said. Professor Sir John Bell, regius professor of medicine at Oxford University, has claimed the coronavirus could become like a cold by as soon as next spring. He also claimed the UK “is over the worst” of the pandemic and things “should be fine” once winter has passed. Professor Dame Sarah Gilbert, the co-creator of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine, has made similar claims and said Covid-19 will become like a cold as it is unlikely to mutate into a dangerous variant. Speaking to a Royal Society of Medicine webinar last night, she said that viruses tend to become weaker as they spread.


She said: “We normally see that viruses become less virulent as they circulate more easily and there is no reason to think we will have a more virulent version of Sars-CoV-2 [Covid-19]. “We tend to see slow genetic drift of the virus and there will be gradual immunity developing in the population as there is to all the other seasonal coronaviruses.” Seasonal coronaviruses cause colds, and Dame Sarah said: “Eventually Sars-CoV-2 will become one of those.” Sir John was asked about the experts comments on Times Radio this morning, where he said the country’s position is much more promising than it was just six months ago. He said: “If you look at the trajectory we’re on, we’re a lot better off than we were six months ago… I think we’re over the worst of it now.” Sir John added that because cause numbers are currently high, immunity to Covid will increase substantially.

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This guy is a salesman, not a scientist.

Covid-19 Pandemic Will Be Over In A Year – Moderna CEO (RT)

The CEO of US pharma giant Moderna, Stephane Bancel, has come up with a reassuring forecast, suggesting that increasing vaccine production could see the coronavirus pandemic finally coming to an end in mid-2022. “If you look at the industry-wide expansion of production capacities over the past six months, enough doses should be available by the middle of next year so that everyone on this Earth can be vaccinated,” Bancel said in an interview with Swiss newspaper Neue Zuercher Zeitung. There’ll be jabs available even for infants soon as well as booster doses for those who would require them, he said. “Those who don’t get vaccinated will immunize themselves naturally because the Delta variant is so contagious,” the chief executive pointed out.

According to Bancel, the situation with Covid-19 will become similar to the one with flu. “You can either get vaccinated and have a good winter. Or you don’t do it and risk getting sick and possibly even ending up in hospital.” When asked when humanity will be able to exit the pandemic, which already saw over 219 million people infected and more than 4.5 million dead, and return to normal life, he replied: “As of today, in a year, I assume.” Moderna’s two-dose Covid-19 vaccine is approved in some 100 countries, while also being one of three drugs used in the immunization campaign in the US. The jab boasts a high efficacy rate of 93% six months after the administration of its second shot, barely waning from the 94.5% reported during its phase-three clinical trials.

However, Bancel insisted that those vaccinated would “undoubtedly” need a refresher at some point to stay protected from the virus. He said he expects younger people to get a booster shot once every three years and older people – once a year. Moderna’s booster contains half a dose of the active ingredient compared to the original injection, which provides the company with a further opportunity to increase production, he said. “The volume of vaccine is the biggest limiting factor. With half the dose, we would have three billion doses available worldwide for the coming year instead of just two billion,” the CEO explained.

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“So let’s say your really don’t like the idea of a vexxing mandate on employers in your state or county. Fine. Find the appropriate legislators and picket their house.

That’s legal. It’ll******them off but so what?”

You, In Fact, Have ALL The Power. Use It (Denninger)

You think OSHA has the power? Biden? Wrong. The Founders gave us a government structure intentionally designed to give the people the tools necessary to prevent what is being done right now. The closer to the people – that is, the smaller the division of government – the less-likely it is that anyone serving in said government in a legislative role is doing that on an exclusive, or nearly-so, basis. Most State Legislatures are part-time; that is, they meet for a couple months out of the year, plus the rare special session here and there. Essentially all County Commissions and City Alderman (or whatever they call them in your town) are. Every one of those people is utterly reliant on either a job or a business they own or control to put food on their table, keep their house and feed their family — just like you are. They’re just as vulnerable to attack on that means of earning a living as you are as well so why don’t you use it and go after them when they threaten to or actually do it to you?

Every single place I have ever lived required any business to obtain a county license, most business require state registration (even if only for sales tax) and a large percentage require licensing of either the firm, certain people in it, or both. The County or State can pass an ordinance requiring any non-discriminatory code of conduct they choose on said firms as a condition of that license. Refuse to comply, you’re closed right here, right now. Period. It doesn’t matter who you are — a hospital, a car dealer, a grocery store, a restaurant, etc. Done through regular legislative order these ordinances (or in the case of a state, laws) are presumptively valid and enforceable. So let’s say your really don’t like the idea of a vexxing mandate on employers in your state or county. Fine. Find the appropriate legislators and picket their house.

That’s legal. It’ll******them off but so what? There’s not a damned thing they can do about it. That’s personal pressure and it won’t be long before their spouse and kids start getting really unhappy. Which, of course, is the point — to make them unhappy enough that they fold. But the best pressure that can be applied through legal means is economic, which is exactly what they’re trying to do to you. So to really **** them up find the business or businesses they and their spouse, if any own, control or are part of — all this is public record and trivial to discover — and picket those, especially if they transact with the general public. Be targeted about it. Get 10, 20 or 100 other people in your local area and pick on one of them. Let’s say one of your County Commissioners owns a very popular tourist location in your town.

Picket it with the intent of destroying the customer volume he does at his business until and unless he, along with the rest of the Commission, do what you want. In this case, specifically, as a condition of a County Business License “no license holder or their agent may inquire of employee or customer personal medical status nor demand any medical treatment, prophylaxis or personal health record, effective immediately.” That eliminates the firm’s ability to put in place a vaccine mandate and arguably bars mask mandates too; they either comply or they’re done. You can’t operate without a business license; the Sheriff can and will come and chain the doors closed! Oh, they don’t want to pass that? Fine — put the first Commissioner’s business in the dirt and then move to the next one. Keep going until you get what you want.

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‘It is true that schoolchildren will mostly catch Covid, if unvaccinated. But it is a poor reason to vaccinate them.’

Scientists Slam Chris Whitty For Scare-mongering Over Unjabbed Children (DM)

Unvaccinated children getting infected with Covid isn’t an issue because they face such a vanishingly rare chance of falling seriously ill, a scientist said today. England’s chief medical officer, Professor Chris Whitty, yesterday told MPs ‘virtually all’ unjabbed youngsters would eventually catch the virus. He revealed about half of youngsters have already had the virus but insisted others would get it ‘sooner or later’. Justifying the decision to roll-out jabs to millions of 12-15 year olds, Professor Whitty added: ‘Vaccination will reduce that risk’. But one academic today criticised the CMO’s reasoning, arguing the majority would probably still get infected even if they were inoculated.

Professor David Livermore, a medical microbiologist at the University of East Anglia, said the virus has evolved to be extremely transmissible — and that vaccines aren’t perfect at blocking the pathogen. And he said natural infection would be preferable to jabs for children because the virus poses little-to-no-threat of causing serious illness in youngsters, whereas the vaccines aren’t risk-free. Some studies even suggest immunity from infection is stronger than that produced by the vaccines. Despite the chief medical officers who advised the Government to extend the rollout claiming they did so after assessing the benefits to children themselves, critics view the move as one intended to protect adults by reducing the risk of transmission.

But a host of scientists are now suggesting the virus now amounts to little more than a common cold for the vast majority of vaccinated adults. Dame Sarah Gilbert, one of the chief scientists behind the AstraZeneca vaccine, last night claimed viruses tend to ‘become less virulent as they circulate’ through the population. And Professor Tim Spector, an epidemiologist at King’s College London, today said jabs had already drastically changed Covid’s tell-tale symptoms, effectively turning it into a bad cold for most who catch it. He said other warning signs like a sore throat, runny nose and sneezing should be added to the official list of symptoms.

Professor Livermore told MailOnline: ‘It is true that schoolchildren will mostly catch Covid, if unvaccinated. But it is a poor reason to vaccinate them. ‘First, vaccines provide only limited protection against infection and transmission, so children are going to be infected over time anyway regardless of whether they have been vaccinated. At most, vaccinating them will only delay this. ‘Secondly, Covid infection does healthy children little harm. They suffer mild disease and recover swiftly. The hazard from Covid is largely for the elderly, not children. ‘Thirdly, evidence from Israel shows natural immunity — which children will acquire from infection — is 13-fold more protective than vaccination.’

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What you get when the MSM spread misinformation:

“..for people aged 18–24, the share of those worried about serious health consequences is 400 times higher than the share of total COVID deaths..”

Americans Have No Clue What the True COVID Numbers Are (Mercola)

Six months after the start of the pandemic, investment management organization Franklin Templeton Investments, in collaboration with Gallup,2 released a report about Americans’ understanding of the COVID-19 infection. The research focused on fundamental and undisputed facts of the risk for individuals and did not address any information that might be seen as controversial, such as treatment options and lockdown policies. In the report, the firm wrote:“Six months into this pandemic, Americans still dramatically misunderstand the risk of dying from COVID-19 … These results are nothing short of stunning. Mortality data have shown from the very beginning that the COVID-19 virus age-discriminates, with deaths overwhelmingly concentrated in people who are older and suffer comorbidities.


This is perhaps the only uncontroversial piece of evidence we have about this virus. Nearly all US fatalities have been among people older than 55; and yet a large number of Americans are still convinced that the risk to those younger than 55 is almost the same as to those who are older.” The Franklin Templeton-Gallup Economics of Recovery Study of Americans found there were misconceptions in the general population about the risks associated with infection. The analysts then separated the beliefs and compared those to the actual data. This is from the report: “On average, Americans believe that people aged 55 and older account for just over half of total COVID-19 deaths; the actual figure is 92%. Americans believe that people aged 44 and younger account for about 30% of total deaths; the actual figure is 2.7%. Americans overestimate the risk of death from COVID-19 for people aged 24 and younger by a factor of 50; and they think the risk for people aged 65 and older is half of what it actually is (40% vs 80%).

When the data were broken down by age groups they found that most people under age 65 really had no concept of the actual number of deaths for their age group. “The discrepancy with the actual mortality data is staggering: for people aged 18–24, the share of those worried about serious health consequences is 400 times higher than the share of total COVID deaths; for those age 25–34 it is 90 times higher.” Writing in Wirepoints, Mark Glennon commented on the findings saying, “The only good news there is that folks 65 and older are much more aware of the heightened risk for their own age group.” The report identified two major culprits of the fundamental misunderstanding of basic facts from a COVID-19 infection. Those culprits were misinformation predominantly shared on social media and the partisan bias for Democrats to “mistakenly overstate the risk of death from COVID-19 for younger people.”

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Best part:

“..the treatment is covered by the federal government. The Food and Drug Administration granted emergency authorization to the drug back in May..”

DeSantis Acquires New Monoclonal Antibodies From UK Drug Firm (JTN)

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has arranged a shipment of a new monoclonal antibody medication to help treat those sick with COVID-19. The Republican governor on Thursday announced the shipment of 3,000 doses of the drug produced by U.K.-based GlaxoSmithKline, a direct response to the Biden administration’s abrupt rationing of other antibody drugs, like Regeneron. “That’s showing that we’re going to leave no stone unturned. And, if there’s somebody that needs a monoclonal antibody treatment, we’re going to work hard to get it to them,” DeSantis told a press conference in Tampa. According to the Epoch Times, one dose of the drug by GSK, known as Sotrovimab, costs approximately $2,100. However, the treatment is covered by the federal government.


The Food and Drug Administration granted emergency authorization to the drug back in May. During the press conference announcing the shipment of Sotrovimab, DeSantis blasted the Biden administration for withholding other antibody treatments that could potentially save the lives of thousands of Floridians. “We’re going to be able to use that Sotrovimab to bridge some of the gaps that are gonna be developing as a result of the Biden administration dramatically cutting medications to the state of Florida,” DeSantis said. According to the New York Times, Florida, alongside six other southern states, was consuming 70% of the federal government’s supply of the antibody drug, Regeneron. In response, the Biden administration began rationing the treatments due to a national shortage.

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“It has successfully appealed four removals, including the Sept. 14 meeting, but the county is tired of dealing with YouTube’s censorship..”

YouTube Promises Pullback On Covid Censorship (JTN)

Speaking your mind about COVID-19 policies at a public meeting can trigger YouTube into holding your local government hostage until it deplatforms your voice. The Google-owned video platform removed an Illinois school board meeting for “medical misinformation,” the latest example of tech giants policing what is permissible to say on the ever-evolving debate over pandemic research, restrictions and treatments. Springfield District 186 said it assumed YouTube objected to the public comment portion of the June 21 meeting, according to The Center Square. As a result, board president Anthony Mares said its YouTube videos will exclude public comments going forward. A parent in the district claimed partial credit for the removal, citing his own public comment.

Ryan Jugan said that “witnessing censorship, suppression of medical professionals, science and data is appalling.” District spokesperson Bree Hankins told Just the News it never got specifics on the purported misinformation in the video and that YouTube denied the district’s appeal. While YouTube said it restored the video following The Center Square report — conducting a third review prompted by the media organization — Hankins said the company has yet to inform the district the video has been reinstated. The video platform has a contentious history with COVID-19 contrarians, including Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. It pulled down a healthcare roundtable he hosted with former White House COVID advisor Scott Atlas, Harvard Medical School’s Martin Kulldorff, Stanford Med’s Jay Bhattacharya and Oxford’s Sunetra Gupta. DeSantis defiantly hosted another.

Reclaim the Net, which tracks digital censorship, shared several similar incidents that involve public meetings upon request. The St. Louis County Council is dumping YouTube completely after four removals in less than two months due to public comments against mask and vaccine mandates. It has successfully appealed four removals, including the Sept. 14 meeting, but the county is tired of dealing with YouTube’s censorship, information technology director Charles Henderson told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. It’s planning to sign a contract with BoxCast.

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Today. Open hearing.

Arizona Audit for Dummies (Ivory Hecker)

It’s hard to keep up with it all! Arizona State Senator Wendy Rogers gives a preview ahead of Friday’s release of the report documenting results of an audit of the Presidential Election in Maricopa County, Arizona.

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“..the aim is to abolish physical cash within 27 months of right now.”

Agustín Carstens: Would You Buy A Dieting Régime From This Man? (Ward)

The somewhat bulky gentleman to your left is the boss of the Bank for International Settlements (BIS), Agustín Guillermo Carstens Carstens. Clearly, one Carstens wasn’t enough for him…judging by his build, in fact, one of anything is never quite enough for Agustín. It’s the sort of build that could be Built Back Better…unless the aim is to Build Better Billy Bunter Backs & Bottoms. In 2018, he was demanding more BIS control over Central Banks, whom he accused of ‘piggy-backing’…I suppose if you have a piggy back yourself, that’s something about which you’re entitled to opinionate. In the last two days, he’s been pushing hard for complete digital control over all money. Many suggest that in calling for this, Aggy is punching above his weight; but if the bloke was any heavier, in the absence of 180 centimetre arms he’d be punching himself.

Carstens Carstens has been a regular feature of Davos meetings since 2010. Let’s face it, as a physical feature, il gran Mexicano is a topological man mountain worthy of his own personal contour lines: he’s a hard guy to miss, and impossible to mark absent. As a result of climbing his own mountain, he has become the 4th richest politician in Mexican history, with a personal wealth estimated at $27 million. If and when Agustín finally achieves his goal of “resetting” who gets what in the Brave New Normal, it’s hard to avoid the feeling that his sharing methodology might be “83 for me, 1 for you” and so forth. Take in this second shot of Senor Carstens: I met Robert Maxwell several times, and trust me – the bouncing Czech was borderline anorexic compared to this guy.

When not busy having doors widened in advance of his meetings outside the BIS, he’s a big wheel in The Innovation BIS 2025 project – a scheme that would be dear to the hearts of the Davos élite if they had such organs factory-fitted. By 2025, the BIS hopes to complete the digitalisation of all payment systems in the UK, the U.S, the EU and every nation State in their orbit. Note the use of the pronoun ‘by’ there, and work backwards: the aim is to abolish physical cash within 27 months of right now. In every context (especially those of France, Italy and Greece) that timetable is about as practical as the idea of picking a locked toilet door with a blade of grass when stricken with diarrhoea.

The BIS refers to electronic cash as central bank digital currency (CBDC), but even this is immensely misleading: the organisation’s project is nothing less than the establishment of a New World Order-valued virtual coinage without reference to any criteria beyond, um, well, er…what the Bank for International Settlements says it is – the clue’s in the name, and all that. But there’s a more than slightly concerning two-tier nature to CBDC. Carstens-Carstens “explains” as follows: “Like cash, a CBDC could and would be available 24/7, 365 days a year. At first glance, not much changes for someone, say, stopping off at the supermarket on the way home from work. He or she would no longer have the option of paying cash. All purchases would be electronic.”

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May 162021
 


John French Sloan Sunday, Women Drying Their Hair 1912

 

COVID Deaths Plummet As Excess Mortality Falls To Pre-Pandemic Levels (McMaken)
Harvard Epidemiologist Locked Out Of Twitter For Criticizing Masks (JTN)
CDC Chief Moves From ‘Impending Doom’ To No Masks In 45 Days (Fox)
Multiple Governors Drop Mask Mandates As CDC Rewrites Guidance (JTN)
CDC Tells Schools To Keep Students In Masks For Another Year (JTN)
Disquiet In UK Schools As Easing Of Mask Restrictions Nears (G.)
Sweden Records 30,000 Suspected Side Effects From Covid Vaccines (RT)
More Than 60,000 Ex-Corona Patients At The Physio (AD)
Toronto Cancels Entire Summer Of Events (ZH)
A Glorified Drug Cartel: How Big Pharma Made Americans Addicted To Opioids (RT)
Liz Cheney Lied About Her Role in Spreading “Russian Bounty” Story (Greenwald)
Circling the Wagons (Jim Kunstler)

 

 

 

 

Joe Biden Clarence Thomas
https://twitter.com/i/status/1393543000211562496

 

 

“..excess mortality began to plummet in early January and is now back to levels below the 2015-2019 average..”

COVID Deaths Plummet As Excess Mortality Falls To Pre-Pandemic Levels (McMaken)

In any given year during the past decade in the United States, more than 2.5 million Americans have died – from all causes. The number has grown in recent years, climbing from 2.59 million in 2013 to 2.85 million in 2019. This has been due partially to the US’s aging population, and also due to rising obesity levels and drug overdoses. In fact, since 2010, growth rates in total deaths has exceeded population growth in every year. In 2020, preliminary numbers suggest a jump of more than 17 percent in all-cause total deaths, rising from 2.85 million in 2019 to 3.35 million in 2020. The increase was not all due to covid. At least one-quarter to one-third appear to be from other causes.

In some cases, more than half of “excess deaths” were attributed to “underlying causes” other than covid. But whether due to untreated medical conditions (thanks to covid lockdowns), or drug overdoses, or homicides, total death increased in 2020. In other words, total excess mortality is a partial proxy for covid deaths. Whatever proportion of total deaths covid cases may comprise, it stands to reason that if total deaths decline, then covid deaths are declining also. Moreover, looking at total deaths helps cut through any controversies over whether or not deaths are properly attributed to covid. What has been the trend with these “excess deaths” in recent months? Well, according to data through mid-March reported by Our World in Data and by the Human Mortality Database, excess mortality began to plummet in early January and is now back to levels below the 2015-2019 average:

Excess mortality peaked the week of January 3 and then it began to collapse, dropping back to summer 2020 levels by mid February. By March 14, excess mortality was at 1 percent above the 2015-2019 average. All this occurred even as very few Americans were vaccinated. When excess deaths began to drop, less than one percent of Americans had been fully vaccinated. At the end of January, less than two percent of Americans had been fully vaccinated. By the end of March, when excess mortality returned to 2019 levels, 15 percent of the population had been fully vaccinated. As of May 11, only one-third of Americans had been fully vaccinated, although “experts” insist 60 to 70 percent of the population must be vaccinated before we can expect to see a drop-off in deaths like that which occurred earlier this year. Yet, as of the week of March 22—excess mortality was below both the 2015-2019 average and below the total for the last year before the official beginning of the covid pandemic (2019).

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Twitter knows better than Harvard.

Harvard Epidemiologist Locked Out Of Twitter For Criticizing Masks (JTN)

A high-profile Harvard epidemiologist this week was locked out of his Twitter account after publicly challenging the mainstream pandemic orthodoxy on face masks. Martin Kulldorff, a professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and a biostatician and epidemiologist, on Friday wrote that “some older high-risk people” had been “naively fooled to think that masks would protect them,” leading some of them to “not socially distance properly” and consequently die from COVID-19. “Tragic,” he wrote further. “Public health officials/scientists must always be honest with the public.” Kulldorff was subsequently locked out of his account. Pictures circulated on Twitter of an apparent message from the company informing him the tweet had “violat[ed] the policy on spreading misleading and potentially harmful information related to COVID-19.”

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It’s mask day today, and confusion reigns.

CDC Chief Moves From ‘Impending Doom’ To No Masks In 45 Days (Fox)

In just about a month and a half, the leader of The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has dramatically changed her tone on COVID-19 and mask mandates. Today, the CDC announced it has revised its mask guidance again, now enabling those who are fully vaccinated to forgo wearing masks both indoors and outdoors. “Anyone who is fully vaccinated can participate in indoor and outdoor activities — large or small — without wearing a mask or physically distancing,” said CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky. “Based on the continuing downward trajectory of cases, the scientific data on the performance of our vaccines and our understanding of how the virus spreads, that moment has come for those who are fully vaccinated,” she continued.

Just 45 days ago, on March 29, Walensky warned the nation of dire days ahead. “I’m going to lose the script, and I’m going to reflect on the recurring feeling I have of impending doom,” she said during a White House Covid-19 Response Team briefing. “But right now I’m scared. I know what it’s like, as a physician, to stand in that patient room gowned, gloved, masked, shielded, and to be the last person to touch someone else’s loved ones, because their loved ones couldn’t be there.” Walensky continued in the March livestream. The fearful sentiment from a top player in the response team sent a clear signal that though the rising vaccination rates were a positive indicator, there was not enough confidence to ditch the mask or change protocol.

In the weeks following Walensky’s March 29 comment, there was a surge in people running to get their vaccines. A month after her doom comments, and with a bump in new vaccination numbers, Walensky announced a mask revision on April 27 to allow people who are fully vaccinated to do most things outdoors, with some precautions. “We continue to recommend masking in crowded outdoor settings and venues such as packed stadiums and concerts where there is decreased ability to maintain physical distance, and where many unvaccinated people may also be present.”

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Shouldn’t they all do the same thing when reading the same guidance?

Multiple Governors Drop Mask Mandates As CDC Rewrites Guidance (JTN)

Several state governors this week scrambled to drop the mask mandates they had unilaterally imposed last year following reissued CDC guidance stating that vaccinated individuals largely do not have to wear them. Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam on Friday announced the rollback of his mask mandate, stating that current case numbers compelled him to “move up the timeline for lifting mitigation measures in Virginia.” “Virginians have been working hard, and we are seeing the results in our strong vaccine numbers and dramatically lowered case counts,” Northam claimed.


Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan on Friday also announced the impending removal of his own mask mandate. “Our long, hard-fought battle against the worst global pandemic in more than a century is finally nearing an end,” Hogan declared in the announcement, also announcing the end to the capacity limits he had imposed on the state. North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper also declared on Friday he would remove his mask mandate “for most settings” in the state. “We can take this step today because the science shows our focus on getting people vaccinated is working,” Cooper said.

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Only masks for those least at risk. Makes sense.

CDC Tells Schools To Keep Students In Masks For Another Year (JTN)

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention told schools nationwide on Saturday they should plan to keep students in masks for the 2021-22 school year because of the limited vaccinations of children. “CDC recommends schools continue to use the current COVID-19 prevention strategies for the 2020-2021 school year,” the agency said in new guidance for students issued just days after it cleared vaccinated adults to ditch their masks in most instances.


“All schools should implement and layer prevention strategies and should prioritize universal and correct use of masks and physical distancing,” it added. The agency also recommended regular testing in schools to “identify individuals with SARS-CoV-2 infection and vaccination for teachers and staff.” While vaccines are widely available for adults, they have not been distributed for most children. The Biden administration only in the last few days authorized Pfizer and BioNTech vaccines be administered for children as young as 12.

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Those poor kids. “Evie Hickman, 13, from Dorking, liked wearing a mask to avoid “talking to people“.

Disquiet In UK Schools As Easing Of Mask Restrictions Nears (G.)

Teachers, pupils and parents have greeted the easing of coronavirus safety measures in schools from Monday with a mixture of relief and, in the light of concern over the Indian variant, dismay and confusion. The government has announced that students will no longer need to wear face coverings in schools. But some areas in the north of England are being advised to continue measures, following rising numbers of cases of the new variant, known as B.1.617.2. For many pupils, wearing a face mask is one of many sacrifices they have made in the fight against the pandemic, and they are pleased the rules have changed. Jessie Wright, 12, from High Wycombe, said she would be “relieved” not to have to wear one in the classroom. “

The masks would get in the way of our learning. They are nice to wear when the weather is cold, but they’re uncomfortable when it’s hot.” Some teachers, she said, would let you “pull down your mask sometimes” at the end of the school day to allow yourself to “get your breath back”. “But other teachers would give you detention if you don’t wear your mask. It’s their decision,” she added. Evie Hickman, 13, from Dorking, liked wearing a mask to avoid “talking to people”. “I’m not going to wear a mask from Monday, but they were useful,” she said. “I’m quite anxious to not cough on others. I do wonder if people will get bullied if they continue to wear masks after next week, though.”

The Department for Education said on Saturday that “the latest data shows infection rates continuing to decrease” and that not having to wear masks would “improve interaction between teachers and students”. However, Bury and Bolton councils have written to parents, advising schoolchildren to “retain the use of face coverings as per the current arrangements, until further notice”, while Bedford borough council has called for all residents aged 16 and over to be vaccinated due to a rise of the variant first discovered in India.

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That would be about a million in the US?!

Sweden Records 30,000 Suspected Side Effects From Covid Vaccines (RT)

An official tally of suspected side effects resulting from Covid vaccination in Sweden has surpassed 30,000, with the majority of cases occurring in people inoculated with AstraZeneca’s shot. According to the Swedish Medical Products Agency, as of last week, the Scandinavian nation had received 31,844 reports of adverse reactions linked to the rollout of Covid-19 vaccines. Sweden is currently offering three variants of the drug. There are currently 2,103 reports of side effects from the Moderna shot, while the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine has been associated with 9,117 health issues. But the number of suspected adverse reactions from the two shots seems relatively small when compared to the 19,961 reports linked to AstraZeneca’s Vaxzevria.

The most common side effects for all three drugs were fever and headache. Other reported adverse reactions included nausea, joint pain, and dizziness. Notably, the AstraZeneca shot only accounts for about 26% of the roughly 2.7 million vaccines that have been administered so far in Sweden, but makes up around 63% of the side effects reports. Of the nearly 32,000 reports, 663 cases have been registered where it’s unclear which vaccine was administered. Two-thirds of the reports have been submitted by the general public. The agency cautioned that individual reports do not necessarily demonstrate a correlation between the medical episode and the vaccine.

Ebba Hallberg, an official with the Medical Products Agency, told Swedish media that it was unusual to receive so many reports of side effects, but noted that the figure was likely high because of public focus on the new vaccines. Healthcare providers are likely only reporting more “serious” side effects, the official theorized. Hallberg also said that it was possible that AstraZeneca was overrepresented in the data because the shot was given to many young people and healthcare workers, who are more tech-savvy and would therefore be more likely to report an issue. According to one Swedish outlet, the agency has received more reports of suspected side effects over the past several months than it typically does over four years.

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Google translate from Dutch.

More Than 60,000 Ex-Corona Patients At The Physio (AD)

Sixty to seventy-five thousand Dutch people with long-term corona complaints are being treated by a physiotherapist. Their number has more than doubled since the turn of the year. This is evident from a calculation based on data from the National Physiotherapy Database, in which some of the Dutch physiotherapists keep track of which treatments they perform. At the end of last year, an estimated 28,000 ex-Covid patients received help from a physical therapist. The treatment duration is an average of eighty days. According to the professional association, this means that a treatment period of several hundred days is no exception. The complaints for which people are treated, according to the KNGF, range from breathing problems, fatigue and loss of muscle mass to psychological problems, or a combination thereof.

Some of them are no longer able to work or participate in social activities. This site recently reported that many ex-Covid patients experience many problems with their brain in addition to physical discomfort. Physiotherapists therefore often work together with, for example, occupational therapists and psychologists. Some people who are being treated with corona have been in hospital, but according to physiotherapist Anne-Loes van der Valk it is 80 percent of people who went through their infection at home. “They are of all ages. I also see students aged 17, 18 who have to temporarily stop their studies. ” Van Woerkom says he expects that the number of ex-Covid patients needing physiotherapy will increase even further. Many people who became infected during the third wave have yet to turn to for help.

Due to the large increase in the number of patients, the pressure on physiotherapy practices is also high. Patients often require longer and more frequent treatment than regular patients, the KNGF warns. The professional association calls on the cabinet to extend the temporary rehabilitation care scheme with which these treatments are reimbursed. Van Woerkom: “The figures show that a lot of physiotherapy is still needed. An arrangement that would expire in three months would leave a huge number of patients out in the cold. ”

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So you go somewhere else

Toronto Cancels Entire Summer Of Events (ZH)

Despite widespread vaccination availability and even the U.S. CDC saying that vaccinated people no longer need to wear masks, Toronto has decided to cancel an entire summer’s worth of social functions. The city has cancelled “all major in-person events for a second straight summer,” CBC reported on Friday. As the city continues to fight off large numbers of Covid cases during the pandemic’s third wave (whatever that even means at this point), it has made cancellations all the way through Labour Day. Previously, provincial officials had been hoping for normalcy beginning in July or August. That doesn’t look like it’s going to be the case. The city has cancelled events like the Canadian National Exhibition, Taste of the Danforth, the Caribbean Carnival and Salsa in Toronto.

The city is making the decision in May because organizers asked for “as much advanced notification as possible”. So now they have it: Toronto will officially have nothing going on during the summer. Mayor John Tory said that he thought the city would be in better shape by late summer, but he wasn’t sure it would be safe to be “shoulder to shoulder” with large groups of people. Darrell Brown, Executive Director of the Canadian National Exhibition called the news “devastating for the community and staff” who will now face layoffs. “At this point in time we’re living on borrowed money in the short-term and will be completely out of funds by December,” he said. The event has lost more than $70 million in revenue over the course of the pandemic and it generates $128 million for the Ontario economy each year.

Last year was the first time the event was closed since World War II. Despite asking the government for relief, it has only gotten $20,000 from Ontario’s small business relief fund. Tory said: “I am working with the Canadian National Exhibition to help the fair through this difficult year and prepare for a bigger and better in-person event in 2022.” Toronto, meanwhile, has delivered 1.6 million doses of Covid vaccines. The city’s population stands at about 3 million. Despite this, the city’s stay at home order will remain in place until “at least” June.

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Pluck them clean.

A Glorified Drug Cartel: How Big Pharma Made Americans Addicted To Opioids (RT)

A new HBO documentary called ‘The Crime of the Century’ lays bare how firms like Purdue used bribery, dodgy marketing, and shady political deals to make fortunes by getting millions hooked on super-strong painkillers. What would it look like if an illegal international drug cartel were allowed to advertise? Perhaps it might take the form of slick music videos and glossy magazine ads promising an ‘end to pain’. Certainly, they would minimise the negative effects of their drugs on your life, your future, and your loved ones. If questioned about what they were doing, we can imagine them blaming those who use their drugs, not themselves for providing them. It sounds mad – madder still that anyone would believe them – but this is exactly what has been allowed to happen with large pharmaceutical companies and their marketing of highly addictive opioid drugs.

At least, this is the argument put forward in a new two-part HBO documentary series released this week entitled, ‘The Crime of the Century’. Across its nearly four-hour run-time, director Alex Gibney lays bare the bribery, underhanded marketing tactics, and shady political dealings that enabled the devastating overproduction and over-distribution of synthetic opiates. In devastating detail, the documentary portrays American pharmaceutical companies and the doctors who recklessly doled out prescriptions as elements of a glorified drug cartel – dealers in lab coats, suits and ties. Systematically overselling the benefits of synthetic opioids and downplaying the risk of addiction, the documentary traces how drug companies are driven to pursue ever stronger and more exotic medications as patents on old treatments run out and profits dry up.

In many ways, it traverses territory that is already well known, but is no less useful for highlighting in shocking detail just how much these companies have become a major risk to public health. This is particularly true in their penchant for ‘discovering’ and treating ever more chronic conditions. While the efficacy of opioids for treatment of acute pain and end-of-life care has been well known, there is little incentive to develop and provide drugs solely for such patients, who tend to be few and far between and whose needs are often short-term. No, the real money is in long-term use in greater numbers. And this is where the dangers of pushing these drugs on patients with any kind of pain became increasingly clear.

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Family recipe.

Liz Cheney Lied About Her Role in Spreading “Russian Bounty” Story (Greenwald)

In an interview on Tuesday with Fox News’ Bret Baier, Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) denied that she spread the discredited CIA “Russian bounty” story. That CIA tale, claiming Russia was paying Taliban fighters to kill U.S. troops in Afghanistan, was cooked up by the CIA and then published by The New York Times on June 27 of last year, right as former President Trump announced his plans to withdraw troops from Afghanistan. The Times story, citing anonymous intelligence officials, was then continually invoked by pro-war Republicans and Democrats — led by Cheney — to justify their blocking of that troop withdrawal. The story was discredited when the U.S. intelligence community admitted last month that it had only “low to moderate confidence” that any of this even happened.

When Baier asked Cheney about her role in spreading this debunked CIA story, Cheney blatantly lied to him, claiming “if you go back and look at what I said — every single thing I said: I said if those stories are true, we need to know why the President and Vice President were not briefed on them.” After Baier pressed her on the fact that she vested this story with credibility, Cheney insisted a second time that she never endorsed the claim but merely spoke conditionally, always using the “if these reports are true” formulation.

Liz Cheney, as she so often does, blatantly lied. That she merely spoke of the Russian bounty story in the conditional — “every single thing I said: I said if those stories are true” — is completely and demonstrably false. Indeed, other than Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), there are few if any members of Congress who did more to spread this Russian bounty story as proven truth, all in order to block troop withdrawal from Afghanistan. In so doing, she borrowed from a pro-war playbook pioneered by her dad, to whom she owes her career: the former Vice President would leak CIA claims to The New York Times to justify war, then go on Meet the Press with Tim Russert, as he did on September 8, 2002, and cite those New York Times reports as though they were independent confirmation of his views coming from that paper rather than from him.

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Still not over.

Circling the Wagons (Jim Kunstler)

Perhaps Arizona can adopt California’s new minority-friendly math curriculum before the election audit ordered by the Arizona State Senate is completed in a month or two. Under that new system of math, or maff, two plus two doesn’t equal four, it equals more, five plus five equals a lot more, and 1,672,143 minus X equals don’t-bother-me-with-your-racist-numbers. It’ll take some kind of math or maff to unravel the mystery of Arizona’s 2020 election results, and the people who run Maricopa County — that is, Phoenix and its suburban asteroid belt, or about 60 percent of the AZ population — don’t want that mystery solved. So, they are not responding to a court-ordered subpoena to produce the evidence, namely, the vote tabulation files from their Dominion Systems voting machines, the county’s server routers, or the chain-of-custody records of the precinct batches of paper ballots.

The county’s servers indicate that the folder containing the database of election results was deleted sometime after the election, so the county has no record of the vote. Hmmmm…. By a previous subpoena, the state Senate took possession of 2.1 million ballots and nearly 400 Dominion election machines and turned them over to the company, Cyber Ninjas, hired to do the audit. Problem was, the county didn’t hand over the passwords to the Dominion machines. Officials claim they never had the passwords, which suggests that the County Board of Elections never had control over their own elections, for which they are legally responsible. A curious situation, because the county says it conducted a previous examination of its voting machines weeks after the election. How’d they do that without the Dominion passwords?

Maybe the data was not stored on the Dominion machines but booted onto external hard drives, which would be against the rules. Or maybe the Dominion machines were connected to the Internet and information was booted into the Dominion machines from somewhere else on Planet Earth. That would be very very against the rules. If that was so, the log files on the machines would show time-stamps and where the outside information originated. Would that be enough for the State Senate to de-certify the Arizona election results? Or prompt audits in other states where the outcome is still contested: Georgia, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin?

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 January 2, 2021  Posted by at 10:06 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  53 Responses »


Pierre-Auguste Renoir Les Grands Boulevards 1875

 

Israel Zooms Past 1 Million Vaccinations In Sprint To Vanquish Pandemic (ToI)
100s Of Israelis Get Infected With COVID19 After Receiving Pfizer Vaccine (RT)
Fauci Says Mandatory COVID19 Vaccines Possible For Travel, School (NYP)
Fauci Says US Will Not Delay Second Doses Of COVID Vaccine (G.)
The Missing Flu Riddle: ‘Influenza Has Been Renamed COVID’ (JTN)
2 Minnesota Lawmakers Demand Nationwide Audit of COVID19 Deaths (ET)
All Primary Schools In London To Remain Closed After U-turn (G.)
Ireland Covid Cases Surge As Health Official Warns Virus Is ‘Absolutely Rampant’ (G.)
Judge Rejects Election Lawsuit Against VP Pence (JTN)
Janet Yellen Made Millions In Wall Street, Corporate Speeches (Pol.)
Paper Dollars in Circulation Globally Spike amid Hot Demand (WS)
Schumer Begins 2021 Promising To Fight – Then Immediately Surrenders (DP)
Forecast 2021 (Jim Kunstler)

 

 

 

 

ISRAEL: 11.5%; UK: 1.39%; US: 0.84%; GLOBAL AVERAGE: 0.13%

Israel Zooms Past 1 Million Vaccinations In Sprint To Vanquish Pandemic (ToI)

Israel has vaccinated 1 million people against COVID-19, more than a tenth of its population, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Friday, as the country’s inoculation drive cemented its status as the world’s most rapid thus far. Netanyahu was on hand to mark what he said was the millionth Israeli to receive a vaccine, in the Arab town of Umm al-Fahm. Netanyahu called it a moment of “great excitement.” “We are breaking all of the records. We brought millions of vaccines to the State of Israel,” he said. We are ahead of the entire world… with our excellent HMOs.” Arabs make up around 20 percent of Israel’s population and have been relatively slow to embrace the vaccination campaign, prompting Netanyahu to launch a series of visits to Arab localities, his first in years, in what is also seen by many as an attempt to score political points ahead of the March elections.


Netanyahu said that “it’s important for me that the Arab public in Israel will get vaccinated quickly” as “it’s saving lives.” He delivered the same message at a vaccination center in Tira, another Arab town, on Thursday. The Jewish state has so far greatly outpaced other countries, per capita, with 11.55% of the population inoculated, according to statistics from the Our World in Data website operated by Oxford University. Second place is held by Bahrain with 3.45%, followed by the UK with 1.39% (though the latter’s data is a few days old). The US stands at 0.84%. The world average is 0.13%. Israel is currently in its third nationwide lockdown to contain the outbreak. It has reported more than 426,000 cases and at least 3,338 deaths since the pandemic began.

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Not great PR.

100s Of Israelis Get Infected With COVID19 After Receiving Pfizer Vaccine (RT)

With the vaccine not providing immediate immunity to the coronavirus, over two hundred Israeli citizens have been diagnosed with the disease days after getting the Pfizer/BioNTech jabs, local media reported. The number of those who got Covid-19 despite being vaccinated was at around 240 people, according to data from Channel 13 News. The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, which the Israeli health authorities rely on, doesn’t contain the coronavirus and can’t infect the recipient. But time is needed for the genetic code in the drug to train the immune system to recognize and attack the disease.

The course of the US-made vaccine requires two shots. According to the studies, immunity to Covid-19 increases only eight to ten days after the first injection and eventually reaches 50 percent. The second jab is administered 21 days from the first one, while the declared immunity of 95 percent is achieved only a week after that. And, of course, there’s still a five percent chance of getting infected even if the vaccine is at its full potential. Israeli news outlets which reported the figures urged the public to remain vigilant and thoroughly follow all Covid-19 precautions during the month after the first shot of the vaccine is administered.

The Jewish state is currently undertaking a massive vaccination campaign, which already saw over one million people or almost 12 percent of the population getting the Pfizer/BioNTech jab. That’s the largest span per capita in the world, according to Oxford University. The first phase of the program aims to immunize medics and elderly people before expanding on to other categories. Around one in a thousand people have reported mild side effects after the injection, including weakness, dizziness and fever as well as pain, swelling and redness in the spot where the shot was given. Only a few dozen of them required medical attention, the Health Ministry said.

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A passport stating you had a jab that doesn’t protect people around you. Logic?

Fauci Says Mandatory COVID19 Vaccines Possible For Travel, School (NYP)

Dr. Anthony Fauci said it’s possible that COVID-19 vaccines will become mandatory in order to travel to other countries or attend school. “Everything will be on the table for discussion,” Fauci, who will be chief medical adviser to President-elect Joe Biden, told Newsweek. The director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases stressed that it’s “not up to me to make a decision,” but added that “these are all things that will be discussed [under the Biden administration].” “I’m not sure [the COVID-19 vaccine] going to be mandatory from a central government standpoint, like federal government mandates,” Fauci said, though he added that he’s “sure” that some individual institutions will require the shot.


Fauci said vaccine requirements in schools are “possible,” but they would come from mandates at the state or city level. “A citywide school system might require it in some cities but not other cities. And that’s what I mean by things not being done centrally but locally,” Fauci said. In regard to travel, Fauci said the US could potentially issue COVID-19 vaccine passports — similar to the ones planned for Israel that would allow residents to travel abroad without being tested for coronavirus. The coronavirus vaccine might also become required by other countries to go there, Fauci said. “So we, in this country, don’t require [people] to get a yellow fever vaccine when you go someplace. It’s the place to which you are going that requires it,” he said.

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The UK is playing around with what the producer says should be done.

Fauci Says US Will Not Delay Second Doses Of COVID Vaccine (G.)

The American infectious disease expert Dr Anthony Fauci has said he does not agree with the UK’s approach of delaying the second dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine. On Friday, Dr Fauci told CNN that the United States would not be following in the UK’s footsteps and would follow Pfizer and BioNTech’s guidance to administer the second dose of its vaccine three weeks after the first. Despite an outcry from doctors, the UK’s chief medical officers defended their plans this week to delay the second dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine to patients, meaning people would now wait up to 12 weeks. The change is to prioritise giving more people their first dose.


Dr Fauci told CNN: “We know from the clinical trials that the optimal time is to give it on one day and for [the Moderna jab which is also approved in the US] wait 28 days and for Pfizer 21 days later.” He added that while you can “make the argument” for stretching out the doses, he would not be in favour of doing that. Pfizer and BioNTech also warned that the two doses were crucial to achieving maximum protection against Covid, saying that they did not have evidence that the first dose alone would protect patients after three weeks. In the UK, the new move will apply to people who were expecting to have their second dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine after 4 January. Patients getting the first jab of the newly approved AstraZeneca/Oxford vaccine will also have to wait up to 12 weeks.

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The numbers are stark:

“This week one year ago, the positive clinical rate was 22%, where now it stands at 0.1%.”

The Missing Flu Riddle: ‘Influenza Has Been Renamed COVID’ (JTN)

Rates of influenza have remained persistently low through late 2020 and into 2021, cratering from levels a year ago and raising the puzzling specter of sharply reduced influenza transmission rates even as positive tests for COVID-19 have shattered numerous records over the last several weeks. Where have all the flu cases gone? Epidemiologist Knut Wittkowski thinks he can answer the riddle. “Influenza has been renamed COVID in large part,” said the former head of biostatistics, epidemiology and research design at Rockefeller University. “There may be quite a number of influenza cases included in the ‘presumed COVID’ category of people who have COVID symptoms (which Influenza symptoms can be mistaken for), but are not tested for SARS RNA,” Wittkowski told Just the News on Thursday.


Those patients, he argued, “also may have some SARS RNA sitting in their nose while being infected with Influenza, in which case the influenza would be ‘confirmed’ to be COVID.” The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s weekly influenza surveillance tracker reports that the cumulative positive influenza test rate from late September into the week of Dec. 19 stands at 0.2% as measured by clinical labs. That’s compared to a cumulative 8.7% from a year before. The weekly comparisons are even starker: This week one year ago, the positive clinical rate was 22%, where now it stands at 0.1%. Those low numbers continue trends observed earlier in the year in which flu rates have remained at near-zero levels. The trend is not limited to the U.S. Worldwide, health authorities have all reported sharply decreased influenza levels throughout what is normally peak flu season in the northern hemisphere.

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Of course you must have this.

2 Minnesota Lawmakers Demand Nationwide Audit of COVID19 Deaths (ET)

Two Minnesota legislators who believe their state’s COVID-19 death count is inaccurate are calling for a nationwide audit to find out how many people died from something other than the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus but were added to the pandemic death totals. Republican State Rep. Mary Franson said she has enlisted a team to examine data provided by Minnesota’s health department. Her team allegedly found that COVID-19 was blamed for some deaths clearly not linked to the respiratory disease. “We found clear-cut examples from the Minnesota Department of Health’s own files—public records—of suicide, a drowning, an auto accident where the passenger was ejected from the vehicle, we found dementia … and strokes,” Franson said during an interview with Fox News, adding that she was “so shocked at what I found that I just could not keep silent.”


“The citizens of our country are being led in fear, and that fear is leading them to make irrational decisions based on the governors with their shutdowns,” she added. “So we need this audit. We need the truth.” Franson was joined by Republican State Sen. Scott Jensen, a practicing physician. Jensen has become the subject of two state probes earlier this year for arguing that the federal and state guidelines on reporting COVID-19 deaths could pressure local authorities to misclassify and inflate their numbers, and that doctors and hospitals are motivated to do so for more health care dollars. “If you could hit a threshold of 161 admissions to your hospital with COVID-19 diagnosis between January and June, you received $77,000 of additional money for each one of those admissions” through the CARES Act, Jensen told Fox News. “I don’t think there’s any questions that reverse incentives have been created.”

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Make it up as you go along.

All Primary Schools In London To Remain Closed After U-turn (G.)

All primary schools in London are to remain closed for the start of the new term after the government bowed to protests and legal pressure from the capital’s local authorities. Under the government’s initial plan, secondary schools and colleges were set to be closed to most pupils for the first two weeks of January, while primary schools within 50 local authorities in London and the south of England were also told to keep their doors shut until 18 January. But the list omitted several London areas where Covid-19 transmission rates remain high including the borough of Haringey, whose leaders said they were prepared to defy the government and support any schools that decided to close to protect staff and pupils.


The protests from local authority leaders came to a head with a letter to the education secretary, Gavin Williamson, from nine London authorities asking for their primary schools to be closed to all except vulnerable children and those whose parents were key workers. The action provoked an emergency Cabinet Office meeting on New Year’s Day, which signed off on the revision, adding the remaining 10 London education authorities to the government’s “contingency areas”. Dr Mary Bousted, joint general secretary of the National Education Union, said primaries across the country should close. “What is right for London is right for the rest of the country,” she said. “It is time for the government to protect its citizens, and in particular its children, by shutting all primary schools for two weeks in order for the situation to be properly assessed, schools made much safer and children and their families protected.”

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“The virus is absolutely rampant now in the community. Everybody is at extreme risk of contracting the virus.”

Ireland Covid Cases Surge As Health Official Warns Virus Is ‘Absolutely Rampant’ (G.)

Ireland is bracing for 9,000 more Covid cases to be added to the official tally as the system struggles to handle a surge in positive results, with health officials warning hospitals will not be able to cope if the trend continues. The sharp rise in positive results led to delays in formal reporting, said Professor Philip Nolan from the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET), though he said it “does not affect case management or contact tracing or our overall monitoring and modelling of the pandemic”. On Thursday, NPHET estimated the number of positive tests still pending registration was 4,000, more than doubling to 9,000 the following day. On Friday, Ireland formally reported a daily record 1,754 confirmed cases, surpassing 1,500 daily cases for the fourth day in a row. Chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan said the biggest worry was the rapid rise in hospitalisations.


“We are now admitting between 50 to 70 people a day to our hospital system. Unfortunately, we expect this to get worse before it gets better. Our health system will not continue to cope with this level of impact.” “We have also seen a significant increase in positive laboratory tests in recent days reflecting a true increase in the incidence of the disease as well as the delay in people coming forward for testing over the Christmas period. As our systems catch up with these effects it places significant pressure on our reporting system.” On New Year’s Eve, Ireland entered a level-five lockdown, with non-essential shops closing, a 5km travel limit, restrictions on household gatherings and schools staying closed. Paul Reid, CEO of the Health Service Executive (HSE), told RTÉ Radio 1: “The virus is absolutely rampant now in the community. Everybody is at extreme risk of contracting the virus.”

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“..the Court lacks subject matter jurisdiction over this case and must dismiss the action..”

Judge Rejects Election Lawsuit Against VP Pence (JTN)

A federal judge dismissed a lawsuit Friday night against Vice President Mike Pence filed by a Texas congressman seeking to reject Joe Biden’s electors when Congress certifies the election next week. U.S. District Judge Jeremy Kernodle ruled that Rep. Louie Gohmert lacked standing to bring the legal action that would prevent Pence from confirming Joe Biden’s electoral victory. “Plaintiff Louie Gohmert, the United States Representative for Texas’s First Congressional District, alleges at most an institutional injury to the House of Representatives. Under well-settled Supreme Court authority, that is insufficient to support standing,” the judge ruled.


“The other Plaintiffs, the slate of Republican Presidential Electors for the State of Arizona (the “Nominee-Electors”), allege an injury that is not fairly traceable to the Defendant, the Vice President of the United States, and is unlikely to be redressed by the requested relief. Accordingly, as explained below, the Court lacks subject matter jurisdiction over this case and must dismiss the action,” he added.

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… and you ain’t in it..

Janet Yellen Made Millions In Wall Street, Corporate Speeches (Pol.)

In the past two years, President-elect Joe Biden’s pick to be Treasury secretary, Janet Yellen, has raked in more than $7.2 million in speaking fees from Wall Street and large corporations including Citi, Goldman Sachs, Google, City National Bank, UBS, Citadel LLC, Barclays, Credit Suisse, Salesforce and more. Yellen’s financial disclosure is one of three filed by the Biden team at the end of 2020 that could become politically problematic with the left wing of the Democratic Party when confirmation hearings begin in January. A Biden transition official said they filed the forms “mid-week” before the Office of Government Ethics posted the forms late Thursday, New Year’s Eve.

Yellen, the former chair of the Federal Reserve, brought in nearly $1 million giving nine speeches to Citi alone. She earned more than $800,000 speaking to Citadel, a hedge fund founded by the Republican megadonor Ken Griffin. She also spoke to the law and lobbying firm Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman. In addition to Yellen, Antony Blinken, Biden’s nominee to be secretary of State, disclosed the clients he advised through WestExec Advisors, the consulting firm he co-founded with other Obama administration alumni. Those clients included the investment giant Blackstone, Bank of America, Facebook, Uber, McKinsey & Company, the Japanese conglomerate SoftBank, the pharmaceutical company Gilead, the investment bank Lazard, Boeing, AT&T, the Royal Bank of Canada, LinkedIn and the venerable Sotheby’s auction house.

The disclosures cracked open WestExec’s closely held client list, which the firm had previously refused to divulge. WestExec has paid Blinken nearly $1.2 million over the past two years, according to the filing, with another estimated $250,000 to $500,000 owed for his work this year.

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To the mattresses.

Paper Dollars in Circulation Globally Spike amid Hot Demand (WS)

The amount of “currency in circulation” – the paper dollars wadded up in people’s pockets and purses, stuffed under mattresses, or packed into suitcases and safes overseas – jumped again in the week ended December 30 to a new record of $2.09 trillion, according to the Federal Reserve’s balance sheet, where currency in circulation is a liability, not an asset. This was up by 16%, or by $293 billion, from February before the Pandemic. The amount has doubled since 2011. This amount of currency in circulation is a function of demand – and that demand has been red hot: US Banks have to have enough paper dollars on hand to satisfy demand at ATMs and bank branches.

Foreign banks will also request paper dollars from their correspondent banks in the US, or return unneeded cash to them. When there is demand for paper dollars, banks buy more of them from the Fed. They pay for them usually with Treasury securities they hold or with excess reserves they have on deposit at the Fed. The surge of paper dollars is a sign of hoarding, not of increased payments. In the US, the share of paper dollars for payments has been declining for years, replaced by electronic payment methods, such as credit and debit cards, PayPal, Zelle and similar systems, all kinds of smartphone-based payment systems, the automated clearinghouse (ACH) system, and checks every now and then.


During periods of uncertainty, people load up on cash, as they have done leading up to Y2K, during the Financial Crisis, and now during the Pandemic. But much of the hoarding of US dollars takes place overseas, with demand for those paper dollars then winding its way to the US banking system via the correspondent banks. These paper dollars also lubricate all kinds of corruption, drug trafficking, and other activities – and laundering this cash is a big profitable industry.

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The stench….

Schumer Begins 2021 Promising To Fight – Then Immediately Surrenders (DP)

Senator Bernie Sanders spent New Year’s morning making one last attempt to halt the defense bill in order to force Republican leader Mitch McConnell allow a vote on $2,000 checks — and Democratic leader Chuck Schumer spent the morning treating everyone like we’re gullible idiots. “I just took to the floor again to demand a vote on $2000 survival checks,” Schumer declared, and he slammed Republican lawmakers for objecting. He promised: “Democrats will not stop fighting.” Then moments later, Schumer and most Senate Democrats surrendered — live on C-Span for everyone to see, they obediently voted for McConnell’s motion to move forward the defense bill for final passage, so that the Senate can close down without any vote on the $2,000 checks. Most Democrats then voted for final passage as well.

Put another way: Schumer tweeted out his promise to fight for starving Americans, while knowing that moments later he would be on live television surrendering to Republicans. Democrats didn’t even muster enough votes on the procedural motions to keep it close enough to force Georgia incumbents Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue off the campaign trail to help McConnell — a scenario that could have provided a huge boost to Democratic candidates Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock, who have been campaigning hard for the $2,000 checks.

[..] Schumer, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and president-elect Joe Biden played particularly pernicious roles helping McConnell slash the original stimulus bill in half. And Schumer’s behavior today — pretending to be fighting hard, while voting with McConnell — was the icing on the cake. Liberal pundits and billionaire-owned media corporations outed themselves as absurdly-detached elitists — making the fake argument that the $2,000 survival checks might go to some people who don’t really need help, and the baffling claim that Americans will probably just save the checks because they can’t go to restaurants (which are still fully open in most states) or travel on airplanes (yes, people are still flying).

The only players who come off well in any of this are the handful of Democratic senators who had the guts to vote against all of McConnell’s key procedural motions (Sanders, Markey, Merkley, Warren, Wyden and Van Hollen) and rank-and-file House Democrats who were willing to use their power to pass the $2,000 checks (and yeah, Pelosi deserves some credit for quickly delivering the $2,000 checks amendment to the Senate).

Read more …

A long column.

Forecast 2021 (Jim Kunstler)

Life in the USA, and other “advanced” nations will reset, but not in the way that most people blabbering about “the Great Reset” think or say it will. Surely, there are groups, gangs, claques, and covens of people in the world who have some consensual agreement about how things might work, and how they would run them to their benefit, in their hypothetical ideal disposition of things. For instance, the so-called “Davos Crowd.” What are they? A convocation of bankers, market movers, politicians, business moguls, tech entrepreneurs, Hollywood catamites, black ops runners, and PR errand boys who have plenty of financial and political mojo in their own realms, but not enough collectively to carry out the kind of global coup that comprises the standard paranoid Great Reset fantasy.

That they meet-up in an ultra-luxurious setting out of a James Bond movie every year stokes terrific fascination, envy, anger, and paranoia that they are capable of anything beyond a festival of ass-kissing, mutual self-congratulation, and status-jockeying, which are the actual activities at the Davos meet-up. For another thing, in the USA, at least, there are too many pissed-off people with small arms, hardened by years of proffered bad faith and dishonesty from the political/media/higher-ed complex, to just bend over and take it up the back-door from a gang of seditious, would-be aristo-totalitarians with lèse-majesté dreams of nostalgie-de-la-boue Marxist redemption. If you have any doubt about how disruptive angry people with small arms and lots of ammo might be to condescending elites, just review the events in the Middle East the past twenty years and imagine those dynamics transferred to Kansas.

What does the “reset” fantasy supposedly include? A “new world order,” a phantasm of a unified world government, which is preposterous because the macro-trend at this moment of history worldwide is the opposite of consolidation and centralization of power, but rather breakup, downscaling, and re-localization. Why? As you saw in the Econ chapter, because the scale, pitch, and range of all our activities must be reduced to survive in the post-industrial conditions of resource and capital scarcity. And it will happen whether we like it or not and despite anybody’s objections. What else is in the Reset grab-bag? Supposedly a single world currency, also absurd for reasons already stated — unless you are talking about gold and silver, which may eventually become the universally-accepted medium of exchange (and store of value, index of price) if the post-industrial contraction is severe and destructive enough.

But fuggeddabowt “digital currencies,” especially in the USA because too many people are “un-banked,” or otherwise depend on cash-money in the informal “gray” economy of just-getting-by (and there will be a lot more of these types as the middle-class gets pounded further down into the mud), plus a large cohort of digitally-capable people just plain ornery about being herded into an IRS surveillance cul-de-sac — and the whole lot of them will fight like hell to prevent government-sponsored crypto-dollars from replacing what used to be considered money. And, if, in the unlikely event that rebellion fails, it’s back to gold and silver by default — and that might literally mean by default.

Read more …

 

 

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Nov 142020
 


Pierre Dumonstier II The right hand of Artemisia Gentileschi holding a brush 1625

 

 

Two Dr. D pieces in one week. That election stuff must be inspiring! I was wondering, after seeing Sidney Powell claim she has evidence of fraudulent things happening in connection with Dominion software, which would be a weird claim if she didn’t have that evidence, that we need to wonder what the next step(s) would be.

Since 29 states use the software, should they all be recounted by hand? Or perhaps only the swing states? Or should there be a nationwide recount, or even a full (hand-counted) re-election? Here’s that video again of Powell, and then Dr. D’s thoughts on it all:

Sidney Powell: “I’m going to release the Kraken”

 

 

Dr. D: Since this was all set up on a White House supercomputer, with many possible branches on the logic tree, but still generally drifting toward some permutation of election fraud and a Legislative fix, I’m hazily seeing a further possibility materializing out there.

This is hard since you have to get wrapped around the well-defined legal Constitutional process preventing election fraud, and promoting fairness between big and small states, by having an election, set and run by sovereign states, who then affirm their process was legal and true in the State Legislatures before referring them to the Federal level via the Electoral College. So this could go strictly popular vote as it usually does, via state legislature, as has happened, or even via Congressional House of Representative at an impasse, which has also happened. Despite media sputtering, none of this is made-up, none of this is new. It is very well-written and well-defined for exactly the reasons the Framers knew well and we have seen this year. They have even just sat down in a smoky room and made it up outside of all Constitutional processes whatsoever, and as no one objected, there was nothing to prevent it. Other than the people, of course, the real masters, maintaining as they do the overwhelmingly large, real armed body.

So let’s suppose, as seems to be happening now, that there is some election fraud. And although given more than a month, as we know the clock unwinds very quickly in legal terms — like lightning. We are already halfway through. If it were only one state, like Pennsylvania, perhaps that state’s Legislature can and should vote in their own electors. And that appears to be happening as they take the first steps of an Legislative audit, going right ‘round the Governor and Courts. Leaving their legal blocks instantly disarmed.

But Michigan is calling for a Legislative audit too, and Wisconsin looks set for a recount. Georgia is already in one, and there are several others.

This is where people lament “No matter what happens, half the nation will think the election is stolen!” Civil war, all that. Which I doubt, given that for four years half the nation ALREADY thought it was stolen by by a Russian caterer with a $10,000 loan (correct me if I’m wrong) and ALREADY are in violent insurrection to burn down, murder, and expel Federal forces from Portland for 200 days, barely making a mark on the nation nor even much impression on their very-large state.

But that’s only if we WANT it to go that way – there’s no special reason we should. America is that land that “Will always do the right thing, having exhausted every alternative” as Churchill would say.

Suppose, seeing 6 states in Legislative stop of Electors, and 29 states in question due to now widely-reported flaws in the Dominion voting system, the Republicans see an easy victory EITHER by state level voting OR by Congressional election, and in a legal, required, “continent election” it is one state, one vote – perhaps 32 v 18. This question then runs to the House of Representatives, where Nancy Pelosi can even attempt to refuse to seat anyone and refuse to hold such a vote.

But what are we really after here? With the States, the House, the Constitution, the Military on one side, and a critical mass of the people duly annoyed, can they really expect to succeed here? We have a nationwide bad election, Republican Legislature and States have all the leverage, and we have no remaining time.

So what CAN happen is that Pelosi can hold a House vote. Trump can call for one. The Courts will demand one – I fail to see how any other option could exist.

OR

Trump, Pelosi, and Biden COULD, if they feel like it, hold it all off and call for a national recount, even a completely new re-election. Now that would not be “Legal” in a certain sense as the President must be un-seated in January, but in a certain sense the law is something we make up in our heads. And they have already “just done it” once previously. Perhaps the House, with a 2/3 vote would make Trump the acting President instead of President Pelosi for the interim months, perhaps until Election #2 + 30 days = March.

Everyone would have the chance to do this again without massive nationwide fraud, and the concession that reveals this and smooths over the “stolen election/civil war” would go towards a quid pro quo of not arresting everyone involved and hanging them down the long boulevard of Pennsylvania Avenue until the U.S. Military runs out of rope. Everyone sunsets and the nation moves on. …With some laws passed on election integrity. And Presidential power, one hopes.

Such are the level of crazy times we are in now. And that’s sensible, since in such crazy, extreme times, unthinkable things happen. Like wars. Or also unthinkable peaces and reconciliations. Which we must have and have had many times before.

 

 

 

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Nov 132020
 


Pablo Picasso Les femmes d’Alger 1955

 

PA Court: Secretary Of State Lacked Authority To Change Voting Deadline (Fox)
Michigan State Senators Request Full Election Audit (ET)
Trump’s New Pentagon Sets Up Clash Over Afghanistan Pullout (Pol.)
Trump Could Be Banned From Twitter After He Leaves Office (Ind.)
Obama: ‘Americans Spooked By Black Man In White House’ (JTN)
This Is What Happens To Us When The Great Global Reset Comes (Kitco)
Three-Quarters Of England’s Care Workers Earn Below ‘Real’ Living Wage (G.)
Unemployment Fiasco in Europe Is Kept out of Official Rates (WS)
Introduction to The New Economics: A Manifesto (Steve Keen)
Watch This! (Dmitry Orlov)

 

 

Prof Appel Dominion

 

 

 

 

Limited impact.

PA Court: Secretary Of State Lacked Authority To Change Voting Deadline (Fox)

A Pennsylvania judge ruled in favor of the Trump campaign Thursday, ordering that the state may not count ballots where the voters needed to provide proof of identification and failed to do so by Nov. 9. State law said that voters have until six days after the election — this year that was Nov. 9 — to cure problems regarding a lack of proof of identification. After the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled that mail-in ballots could be accepted three days after Election Day, Pennsylvania Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar submitted guidance that said proof of identification could be provided up until Nov. 12, which is six days from the ballot acceptance deadline. That guidance was issued two days before Election Day.


“[T]he Court concludes that Respondent Kathy Boockvar, in her official capacity as Secretary of the Commonwealth, lacked statutory authority to issue the November 1, 2020, guidance to Respondents County Boards of Elections insofar as that guidance purported to change the deadline … for certain electors to verify proof of identification,” Judge Mary Hannah Leavitt said in a court order. This was in line with the Trump campaign’s argument, which was that there was no basis in the state’s law to extend the identification deadline, and that Boockvar did not have the power to unilaterally change it. The court had previously ordered that all ballots where voters provided proof of identification between Nov. 10 and 12 should be segregated until a ruling was issued determining what should be done with them.

Matt Gaetz: Dead people don’t always vote. But when they do, they prefer to vote by mail.

Read more …

“Every citizen deserves to have faith in the integrity of the election process and its outcome..”

Michigan State Senators Request Full Election Audit (ET)

At least two Michigan Republican state senators have requested a full election audit, asking the Michigan secretary of state’s office for a full recount before the election results are certified, according to a letter they sent to her office on Thursday. State senators Lana Theis and Tom Barrett wrote that Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson and canvassers that are reviewing allegations of irregularities and voter fraud made in lawsuits filed by President Donald Trump’s campaign. They are requesting a “full audit” of the election, saying it needs to be done before the state certifies the election results. “Every citizen deserves to have faith in the integrity of the election process and its outcome,” they said in letters.

“It is our responsibility, as elected public servants, to assure the people of Michigan of the process’s integrity through complete transparency and the faithful investigation of any allegations of wrongdoing, fraud, or abuse.” Their letters made reference to allegations made by Trump’s legal team, claims of witnesses about irregularities at polls, and a glitch that switched 6,000 votes from a Republican official to a Democratic official in Antrim County that was later corrected and acknowledged by the secretary of state’s office, although the Michigan GOP said the same software – Dominion Voting Systems – was used in dozens of other counties.

“The erroneous reporting of unofficial results from Antrim county was a result of accidental error on the part of the Antrim County Clerk. The equipment and software did not malfunction and all ballots were properly tabulated. However, the clerk accidentally did not update the software used to collect voting machine data and report unofficial results,” Benson said in a statement last week about Antrim County’s election results. Other allegations from the two lawmakers include ineligible ballots being counted, poll workers being told to backdate ballots, counting the same ballots several times, and other claims.

Read more …

The shameless backlash against bringing the troops home is stunning.

Trump’s New Pentagon Sets Up Clash Over Afghanistan Pullout (Pol.)

President Donald Trump’s decapitation strike on the Pentagon this week is raising fears that the U.S. will accelerate the withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan, putting newly installed leaders on a collision course with top generals and others who are urging a more deliberate drawdown. Current and former administration officials say Trump fired Defense Secretary Mark Esper Monday in part over his opposition to accelerating troop drawdowns worldwide, and especially in Afghanistan. The upheaval accelerated on Tuesday with the resignation of three high-level civilians and the installation of loyalists who are expected to ram through Trump’s agenda, and continued on Wednesday when retired Army Col. Douglas Macgregor, an outspoken critic of the war in Afghanistan, was brought on as senior adviser to new acting Defense Secretary Chris Miller.

Any move to accelerate withdrawals would set up a clash with the nation’s top generals and other civilians, who have argued publicly against leaving Afghanistan too quickly while the security situation remains volatile. It would also complicate President-elect Joe Biden’s pledge to leave a small number of troops in the country to guard against terror attacks.

“A precipitous and what appears to be near total withdrawal of U.S. forces from Afghanistan — not on a conditions-based approach advocated by our military, political and intelligence leadership but rather on an old campaign promise by President Trump now carried out by hyperpartisan Trump loyalists installed in a last-minute purge of DoD — is both reckless and will not make America safer,” said Marc Polymeropoulos, a retired CIA senior operations officer. Concerns are also growing within the national security community that the personnel churn portends other major policy shifts, such as military actions abroad and in the U.S. Yet current and former administration officials believe the moves were more about rewarding allies and punishing those who resisted the president’s agenda than they were about major changes in direction.

Read more …

And the New York Times will stop writing about him?

Trump Could Be Banned From Twitter After He Leaves Office (Ind.)

Donald Trump will no longer be protected by Twitter’s public interest guidelines when he leaves office in January, meaning he will be suspended or banned if he continues to break the platform’s rules. Twitter’s policy regarding public figures, which was formalised last year, means only “current or potential member of a local, state, national, or supra-national governmental or legislative body” receive special treatment . The US President’s Twitter account was flagged more than a dozen times in the days following the election for posting misinformation and misleading claims about the election. Several prominent Democrats called for Twitter to suspend Mr Trump’s account until all states finish counting the votes, however the platform’s public interest guidelines prevent it from being suspended or removed.


After his lead in several key states began to dwindle to challenger Joe Biden, Mr Trump attempted to undermine the electoral process by calling for a halt to the counting of mail-in ballots. “They are trying to STEAL the Election,” he tweeted. Democratic Congressman David Cicilline described Mr Trump’s tweets as a “threat to democracy”, while fellow congressman Gerry Connolly tweeted, “This is pure disinformation.” Warnings placed on Mr Trump’s tweets meant they were not immediately visible on his timeline and engagement with the tweets was restricted. One warning explained: “Some or all of the content shared in this tweet is disputed and might be misleading about how to participate in an election or another civic process.” The rate of violations would typically lead to an account suspension, either temporarily or permanently. However, public figures are protected by a “public-interest exception” policy.

Read more …

Not by his politics?

Oh well, Barry has a new book out.

Obama: ‘Americans Spooked By Black Man In White House’ (JTN)

Just before President George W. Bush left the White House after two terms, he declared he wouldn’t be weighing in with thoughts on his successor, following the model of his father, George H.W. Bush. But Barack Obama made no such pledge. And now, just days after the 2020 election, the 44th president is hawking a new book so get ready to hear a lot more from him. Obama, the first biracial man to be elected president, makes an incendiary charge in his book, “A Promise Land,” which comes out Tuesday. President Trump, he claims, “promised an elixir for the racial anxiety” of “millions of Americans spooked by a black man in the White House.”

Those Americans – whom Obama implies appear racist – were prey to “the dark spirits that had long been lurking on the edges of the modern Republican party – xenophobia, anti-intellectualism, paranoid conspiracy theories, an antipathy toward black and brown folks.” Obama continues: “It was as if my very presence in the White House had triggered a deep-seated panic, a sense that the natural order had been disrupted. Which is exactly what Donald Trump understood when he started peddling assertions that I had not been born in the United States and was thus an illegitimate president.” Obama writes that “he came to regard Trump’s media ubiquity and characteristic shamelessness as merely an exaggerated version of the Republican Party’s attempts to appeal to White Americans’ anxieties about the first Black president – a sentiment he said ‘had migrated from the fringe of GOP politics to the center – an emotional, almost visceral, reaction to my presidency, distinct from any differences in policy or ideology,'” CNN reported.

The 768-page memoir is reportedly just volume one of his latest memoirs. Obama also writes about his shortcomings, like his failure to pass immigration reform, which he called “a bitter pill to swallow.” But he said his agenda was always correct, though voters swept out a slew of Democrats in the 2010 midterm election, two years into his presidency. “As far as I was concerned, the election didn’t prove our agenda had been wrong,” Obama writes of 2010. “It just proved that … I’d failed to rally the nation, as FDR had once done, behind what I knew to be right. Which to me was just as damning.”

Read more …

“..we have created so much debt and this is a worldwide phenomenon, so we can’t have normal interest rates anymore”

This Is What Happens To Us When The Great Global Reset Comes (Kitco)

We’re in the end game of a dollar-based system, and a new monetary system will emerge with gold as the anchor, said Willem Middelkoop, founder of the the Commodity Discovery Fund. “We’re in a rough period. It doesn’t matter which president will be next, he can only avoid a deep depression by printing trillions and trillions. As an investor, we concentrate on that part of the story,” he said. Fixing the fundamental problems in our economy, including excessive debt, will require more than just a continuation of past policies. “I think we have created so much debt and this is a worldwide phenomenon, so we can’t have normal interest rates anymore. We have seen the IMF coming out with a statement last week saying that we need a new Bretton Woods moment,” he said.


“We had a cover on Time magazine calling for the Great Reset. We had the World Economic Forum calling for a Great Reset. I wrote a book on the topic, published in 2014, it was called The Big Reset.” A new global system will require an overhaul of many monetary pillars that we currently have, Middelkoop noted. “We need a debt restructuring. IMF and the United Nations have been quite clear about that; we need debt restructuring first for the poor countries but later for the rich countries, we all have too much debt on our books. We need to find a new anchor for the world monetary system,” he said. Until then, trillions more in stimulus will be issued by governments around the world to avoid a global depression like that of the 1930’s, Middelkoop said.

Read more …

Without COVID, this would have gotten zero attention.

Three-Quarters Of England’s Care Workers Earn Below ‘Real’ Living Wage (G.)

Almost three-quarters of frontline care workers in England are earning below the “real” living wage, which experts say is the bare minimum to allow families basics such as a secondhand car and a week’s annual UK self-catering holiday, research has revealed. The proportion of care workers below the threshold is even higher in northern areas, where care homes have been hit hardest by Covid-19. In the north-east, 82% of care staff earned less than the England-wide real living wage of £9.50 per hour, while the proportion was 78% in the north-west. One care worker in Lancashire earning £8.72 per hour who recently had her pay cut told the Guardian some colleagues have been using food banks.

The figures apply to more than 832,000 frontline care workers, more than 600,000 of whom are earning below the minimum thresholds. In Hillingdon, the borough that contains Boris Johnson’s Uxbridge and South Ruislip parliamentary constituency, more than 3,000 care workers earn so little that if they are the main breadwinner in a family of four with their partner on similar wages, they could not afford the £112 a week they require for food, according to analysis by Loughborough University that underpins real living wage calculation. When Johnson was London mayor he supported the London living wage campaign as “making economic sense”.

The figures were calculated by the Living Wage Foundation and come amid growing calls for reform of the social care sector to create parity with the NHS, where all nurses earn above the threshold. On Thursday, Jeremy Hunt, the chairman of the Commons health and social care committee, called for a 10-year funding plan for social care akin to the national consensus that established the NHS in 1948. New polling revealed 82% of the public now back government investment in social care to fund a pay rise for care workers according to new polling by Survation for Citizens UK.

Read more …

But what are the true rates?

Unemployment Fiasco in Europe Is Kept out of Official Rates (WS)

In Europe, people who are furloughed are paid under government programs via their employers. Many of these programs have been created during the Pandemic. In theory, these people still have jobs. In practice, they’re not working, or are working heavily reduced hours. But they do not count as “unemployed” and are not reflected in the “unemployment” numbers. So throughout the Pandemic, the official unemployment rates barely ticked up, compared to the last crisis, and remain low for the EU era, despite tens of millions of people who’d stopped working due to the lockdowns (chart via Eurostat):

The UK adopted a sweeping job retention program at the beginning of its last lockdown. Each government pays companies, who in turn pay employees between 60% and 84% of their monthly wage. In some cases, the workers work fewer hours for less pay; in others, they don’t work at all. The workers take a hit to their income but their jobs remain intact, at least for the duration of the program. Under the UK program, businesses can claim 80% of a staff member’s regular monthly salary, up to a maximum of £2,500. The money must be passed on to the employee and can also be topped up by the employer.


But the unemployment rate has begun to rise as people come off furlough, and those whose jobs disappeared entered official unemployment. The unemployment rate ticked up to 4.8% in the three months to September, from 4.5% in Q2 and from 3.9% a year earlier, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS). In London, the unemployment rate surged by 1.2 percentage points from the previous quarter, to 6%. It was the largest quarterly increase in unemployment since the ONS started tracking the data in 1992.

Read more …

“I’m writing a book for Polity Press entitled The New Economics: A Manifesto. It has a long way to go, but this is the reasonably complete first chapter.”

Introduction to The New Economics: A Manifesto (Steve Keen)

Even before the Covid-19 crisis began, the global economy was not in good shape, and nor was economic theory. The biggest economic crisis since the Great Depression began late in first decade of the 21st century. Called the “Global Financial Crisis” (GFC) in most of the world and the “Great Recession” in the USA, it saw unemployment explode from 4.6% of the US workforce in early 2007 to 10% in late 2009. Inflation turn into deflation— inflation of 5.6% in mid-2008 fell to minus 2% per year in mid-2009—and the stock market collapsed, with the S&P500 Index falling from 1500 in mid-2007 to under 750 in early 2009. The economy recovered very slowly after then, under the influence of an unprecedented range of government interventions, from the “cash for clunkers” scheme that encouraged consumers to dump old cars and buy new ones, to “Quantitative Easing”, where the Federal Reserve purchased a trillion-dollars-worth of bonds from the financial sector every year, in an attempt to stimulate the economy by making the wealthy wealthier.

This crisis surprised both the policy economists who advise governments on economic policy, and the academic who develop the theories and write the textbooks that train the vast majority of new economists. They had expected a continuation of the boom conditions that had preceded the crisis, and they in fact believed that crises could not occur. In his Presidential Address to the American Economic Association in January 2003, Nobel Prize winner Robert Lucas declared that crises like the Great Depression could never occur again because “Macroeconomics … has succeeded: Its central problem of depression prevention has been solved, for all practical purposes, and has in fact been solved for many decades. (Lucas 2003 , p. 1 ; emphasis added). Just two months before the crisis began, the Chief Economist of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the world’s premier economic policy body, declared that “the current economic situation is in many ways better than what we have experienced in years”, and predicted that “sustained growth in OECD economies would be underpinned by strong job creation and falling unemployment.” (Cotis 2007 , p. 7; emphases added)

How could they be so wrong? Economists could be excused for this failure to see the Great Recession coming if the crisis were something like Covid-19, when a new pathogen suddenly emerged out of China. That such a plague would occur was predicted as long ago as 1995 (Garrett 1995). But predicting when the pathogen would emerge, let alone what its characteristics would be, was clearly impossible. However, the epicentre of the Great Recession was the US financial system itself: the crisis came from inside the economy, rather than from outside. Surely there were warning signs? As Queen Elizabeth herself put it when she attended a briefing at the London School of Economics in 2008, “If these things were so large, how come everyone missed them?”

Read more …

Good to see Dmitry!

Watch This! (Dmitry Orlov)

I first realized that the USA was going to follow the general trajectory of the USSR back in 1995. I also immediately realized that the USSR was rather well prepared for collapse whereas the USA was about to be blindsided by it, and so, as a public service, I thought I should warn people. “And a fat lot of good that did!” some of you might immediately exclaim. [..] And so I had my “Eureka!” moment in 1995, and a decade later, in 2005, I went public with my observations. I got a surprisingly sympathetic response from some particularly enlightened people (even if they said so themselves). And now, a quarter of a century after my initial insight, as the US enters national bankruptcy and institutional collapse, the whole world is being treated to an end-of-empire spectacular election extravaganza starring none other than the consummate showman and impresario extraordinaire Donald Trump.

He used to run beauty pageants, while this one is more of an ugliness pageant, but then beauty is rare and always fades while ugliness is commonplace and usually just gets uglier, making it a much safer bet. And so let’s accept it as a parting present to the world from a vanishing nation that gave us horror flicks, reality television and three-ring circuses with sideshow freaks. Within the sweeping panoramic tableau of the 2020 election, Trump (our hero) appears bathed in a golden sunset glow of nostalgia for lost American greatness which he forever promises to rekindle. Rest assured, Trump or no Trump, America will never be great again. But Trump’s magic halo extends out from his resplendent orange cranial plumage and enfolds all those who pine for the lost Pax Americana and fear and loathe what America is fast becoming—which is, to put it bluntly, a holding tank for degenerates of every stripe presided over by a freak show.

They pine for a time when men were manly and women womanly, when secretaries were flattered when their bosses took time away from their busy schedules to rub up against them, and when everyone was either a WASP, or worked hard on trying to look and act like one, or kept to their assigned station in life and knew better than to get too uppity. Arrayed against our fearless orange-hued leader, who at 74 is no spring chicken himself, is a ghoulish gaggle of geriatric gerontocrats. There is Joe Biden, 77, whose brain ran away and joined a circus some years ago but who imagines himself to be president-elect, or senator, or vice-president, or something. Having spent eight years lurking in the shadows as Obama’s VP, Biden is as fit to lead as a pig is kosher after rubbing its side against a corner of a synagogue. To assist Biden in his dodderings there is his party-appointed nanny, Kamala Harris, a mere slip of a girl at 56.

Also haunting the balcony of the American mausoleum is Nancy Pelosi, 80, who still runs the House of Representatives even though proper employment for her at this point would be up on a pole keeping the birds off the corn. There is also Bernie Sanders, 79, a sad pagliaccio whose permanent role in the political Commedia dell’Arte that the Democratic Party stages every four years is to simulate democracy by cheerleading crowds of young imbeciles in Act I, to feign death after falling off his pogo stick in Act II, and to stagger to his feet, wave and smile for the curtain call. Last but not least, there is the horrid harpy Hillary Clinton, who is relatively young at 73 but whose putrid smell and cadaverous, ghastly visage are not longer fit for public display except in most delicately contrived circumstances. Hidden even further backstage is the suppurating cadaver of George Soros who, at 90, is still pulling the strings and wreaking havoc in the US and around the world.

Read more …

 

 

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Click at the top of the sidebars for Paypal and Patreon donations. Thank you for your support.

 

 

What makes us fragile is that institutions cannot have the same virtues (honor, truthfulness, courage, loyalty, tenacity) as individuals.
– Nassim Nicholas Taleb in The Bed of Procrustes

 

 

COVID Tracking Project

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in virustime, election time, all the time. Click at the top of the sidebars to donate with Paypal and Patreon.

 

Dec 112017
 
 December 11, 2017  Posted by at 10:27 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  9 Responses »


MC Escher Balcony 1945

 

Bitcoin Futures Top $18,000, Soar 20% From Open – Halted for Second Time (ZH)
Investors Told to Brace for Steepest Rate Hikes Since 2006 (BBG)
The Struggle To Maintain The “Standard Of Living” (Roberts)
China Audit Finds Provinces Faked Data and Borrowed Illegally (BBG)
Markets Tell You What To Do If You Listen (Peters)
UK Seeking ‘Canada Plus Plus Plus’ EU Trade Deal (BBG)
Brexit’s Just A Distraction To The Real Problem: UK’s Clapped-Out Economy (G.)
Poland Risks Being the EU’s Rogue State (BBG)
Pentagon To Undergo First Ever Audit (ZH)
‘A Christmas Carol’, Money, Debt, and Success (MW)
Mass Starvation Is Humanity’s Fate (Monbiot)
Monsanto Offers Cash To US Farmers Who Use Controversial Chemical (R.)

 

 

You don’t have to own bitcoin anymore to bet on it.

Bitcoin Futures Top $18,000, Soar 20% From Open – Halted for Second Time (ZH)

Update: At 10:05pm ET, the CFE halted trading in Cboe Bitcoin Futures (XBT), in accordance with CFE Rule 1302(i)(ii) which defines the threshold for the halt as a 20% surge. XBT will re-open for trading approximately five (5)minutes from the time of the halt. Bitcoin Futures have topped $18,000 for the first time… It was reopened at 10:10pm ET. All of which is odd because Bob Pisani and the rest of the mainstream said that the opening of Bitcoin Futures would bring about the demise of the cryptocurrency due to the ability to short?

Update: At precisely 8:31pm ET, the CBOE instituted the first ever XBT trading halt, which lasted for two minutes according to a notice on Cboe’s website. XBT contracts have since resumed trading. As a reminder, the Cboe can halt trading for 2 minutes after 10% swings, and 5 minutes at 20%, an attempt to prevent wild swings.

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Things are a-changing.

Investors Told to Brace for Steepest Rate Hikes Since 2006 (BBG)

Wall Street economists are telling investors to brace for the biggest tightening of monetary policy in more than a decade. With the world economy heading into its strongest period since 2011, Citigroup Inc. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. predict average interest rates across advanced economies will climb to at least 1 percent next year in what would be the largest increase since 2006. As for the quantitative easing that marks its 10th anniversary in the U.S. next year, Bloomberg Economics predicts net asset purchases by the main central banks will fall to a monthly $18 billion at the end of 2018, from $126 billion in September, and turn negative during the first half of 2019. That reflects an increasingly synchronized global expansion finally strong enough to spur inflation, albeit modestly.

The test for policy makers, including incoming Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell, will be whether they can continue pulling back without derailing demand or rocking asset markets. “2018 is the year when we have true tightening,” said Ebrahim Rahbari, director of global economics at Citigroup in New York. “We will continue on the current path where financial markets can deal quite well with monetary policy but perhaps later in the year, or in 2019, monetary policy will become one of the complicating factors.” A clearer picture should form this week when the Norges Bank, Fed, Bank of England, European Central Bank and Swiss National Bank announce their final policy decisions of 2017. They collectively set borrowing costs for more than a third of the world economy. At least 10 other central banks also deliver decisions this week.

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Again, from an article with much more info and many more graphs.

The Struggle To Maintain The “Standard Of Living” (Roberts)

Economic cycles are only sustainable for as long as excesses are being built. The natural law of reversions, while they can be suspended by artificial interventions, cannot be repealed. More importantly, while there is currently “no sign of recession,” what is going on with the main driver of economic growth – the consumer? The chart below shows the real problem. Since the financial crisis, the average American has not seen much of a recovery. Wages have remained stagnant, real employment has been subdued and the actual cost of living (when accounting for insurance, college, and taxes) has risen rather sharply. The net effect has been a struggle to maintain the current standard of living which can be seen by the surge in credit as a percentage of the economy.

To put this into perspective, we can look back throughout history and see that substantial increases in consumer debt to GDP have occurred coincident with recessionary drags in the economy. No sign of recession? Are you sure about that?

There has been a shift caused by the financial crisis, aging demographics, massive monetary interventions and the structural change in employment which has skewed the seasonal-adjustments in economic data. This makes every report from employment, retail sales, and manufacturing appear more robust than they would be otherwise. This is a problem mainstream analysis continues to overlook but will be used as an excuse when it reverses. Here is my point. While the call of a “recession” may seem far-fetched based on today’s economic data points, no one was calling for a recession in early 2000 or 2007 either. By the time the data is adjusted, and the eventual recession is revealed, it won’t matter as the damage will have already been done. As Howard Marks once quipped: “Being right, but early in the call, is the same as being wrong.”

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You need an audit for that?

China Audit Finds Provinces Faked Data and Borrowed Illegally (BBG)

China found some local governments inflated revenue levels and raised debt illegally in a nationwide audit, a setback for Beijing in its bid to boost the credibility of economic data after a run of scandals. Ten cities, counties or districts in the Yunnan, Hunan and Jilin provinces, as well as the southwestern city of Chongqing, inflated fiscal revenues by 1.55 billion yuan ($234 million), the National Audit Office said in a statement on its website dated Dec. 8. Of that, 1.24 billion yuan was from the Wangcheng district in the provincial capital of Hunan, where officials faked the ownership transfer of local government buildings to boost income. The inspection, which covered the third quarter, also found that five cities or counties in the Jiangxi, Shaanxi, Gansu, Hunan and Hainan provinces raised about 6.43 billion yuan in debts by violating rules, such as offering commitment letters.

The findings are a blow to China’s bid to rein in data fraud, which has been widespread in some of the poorer provinces where officials were incentivized to inflate the numbers as a way of advancing their careers. Concern from investors wanting to be able to trust data out of the world’s second-largest economy led to the government trying to crack down on the practice, with President Xi Jinping saying in March that data fraud “must be throttled,” according to the state-run Xinhua News Agency. Rigid stability in provincial data on growth and employment has long sparked questions from economists, with the rust-belt province of Liaoning, in China’s northeast, famously admitting back in January that it had fabricated fiscal data from 2011 to 2014. Some regions and cities in Jilin province and Inner Mongolia also falsified reports, the Communist Party said in June, without providing details.

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“Near the highs, few opportunities exist to earn substantial returns, so you should take little risk..”

Markets Tell You What To Do If You Listen (Peters)

Anecdote” “What are the odds we come across an opportunity in the coming 4yrs to earn 20%?” the investor asked his team. “High,” they answered. “The odds are 100%,” he said, having seen this movie a few times. “So our cost of capital is 5% per year (20% divided by 4yrs), plus the 1% we earn on cash,” he said. His team nodded. “Under no circumstances should we deploy capital unless it earns well more than 6% per year from here on out.” It made sense. “What do we see that earns more than this hurdle?” he asked. His team’s list was as short today as it was long in 2016, 2011, 2009, 2003, 1998, 1997, 1994, 1992, 1990, 1987, etc. Today’s few opportunities have much in common with previous peaks: negative convexity, complexity, illiquidity, leverage, and/or all the above. “Investors confuse a 7.5% average annualized return target with a 7.5% annual return target,” he explained. “They’re entirely different things.”

Targeting average annualized returns allows you to accept what the market gives you, while targeting annual returns forces you to leverage investments near peak valuations to hit your bogey. “Typical pension and endowment boards want incoming investment returns to consistently exceed outgoing flows.” So most investors attempt to produce the highest return every year, no matter what it takes. “But that’s the wrong objective. Never underestimate the value of cash and patience in achieving the real goal; superior returns over the complete cycle,” he explained. “Markets tell you what to do if you listen,” he said. “Near the highs, few opportunities exist to earn substantial returns, so you should take little risk. Near the lows, opportunities to earn attractive returns are abundant.” You should take a lot of risk. “This sounds simple because it is. It’s obvious. But obvious is not easy.”

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But Canada says no.

UK Seeking ‘Canada Plus Plus Plus’ EU Trade Deal (BBG)

Britain wants a trade deal with the European Union that includes the best parts of the bloc’s agreements with Japan, Canada and South Korea, along with financial services, Brexit Secretary David Davis said, showing optimism a pact can be struck within a year. The chances of the U.K. leaving the EU without a deal, defaulting to World Trade Organization rules, have “dropped dramatically,’’ Davis said in a BBC TV interview on Sunday. Still, he signaled the painstaking agreement struck on Friday to end the first phase of Brexit negotiations isn’t binding, and that Britain’s exit payment of as much as 39 billion pounds ($52 billion) is contingent on reaching a free-trade agreement. Doing so, he said, “is not that complicated.”

“We start in full alignment: we start in complete convergence with the EU, so we then work it out from there,” Davis said on the Andrew Marr Show. “What we want is a bespoke outcome: We’ll probably start with the best of Canada, the best of Japan and the best of South Korea and then add to that the bits that are missing, which is services,” he said. “Canada plus plus plus would be one way of putting it.” The Brexit secretary’s bullishness belies the noise coming from his counterparts in the EU. It’s taken eight months of at times bitter haggling to make sufficient progress on what was supposed to be the easiest part of the talks – resolving Britain’s exit payment, its future border with Ireland, and the rights of EU and U.K. citizens living in each other’s territories.

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Don’t think I ever heard clapped-out before.

Brexit’s Just A Distraction To The Real Problem: UK’s Clapped-Out Economy (G.)

As Brexiteers shout “forward” and remainers chant “ back”, the battle over the EU dominates British politics. Yet it obscures a more basic British problem. Our clapped-out economy, brilliant at consumption, poor at production, is becoming unviable. A “nation of shopkeepers” has become a nation of shoppers, dependent on debt. Deindustrialisation and misguided economic policies have reduced the former workshop of the world to a level where Britain can neither pay its way, nor afford the defence and public services an advanced society needs. Everything in which we once were leaders – ships, railways, TV, great bridges, nuclear plants, bicycles, textiles, clothing, even Kit Kats – we now import.

We consume more than we produce, leading to an annual balance of payments deficit rising above 6% of GDP, financed by borrowing and selling companies, property and citizenship to survive. The result is a sluggish economy (a growing proportion of which is owned by foreigners); low productivity (because the manufacturing sector has shrunk to one-tenth of GDP); and static pay, as every sector except finance cuts costs to survive. Being in or out of the EU has little relevance to this basic problem. The EU is a market, not a mutual support system. Instead of redistributing growth to succour laggards it punishes them, as it has Greece. It drains us and proscribes the techniques of nurture by state aid, protectionism and devaluation by which Germany and France grew. Its “aid” is just our own money back, with the EU’s heavy costs taken out.

Even worse, Germany’s huge surpluses mean that deficit countries like the UK, with our £60bn-plus trade deficit, are compounded by the single market. Yet coming out offers no solution either. It generates uncertainty and deters investment. Most of world trade is controlled by multinationals, and Britain would be more vulnerable to their ministrations. Tory Brexiteers aim at turning us, down and dirty, into a low-wage, deregulated, cost-cutting tax haven-on-Thames. Hardly acceptable to an electorate that has already endured decades of that. The only solution is to rebalance an economy excessively dependent on finance and services by widening the manufacturing and production base and making it competitive. Neither free trade nor the single market will do that.

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The EU is going to make this ugly. It’s the only thing they know how to do.

Poland Risks Being the EU’s Rogue State (BBG)

Behind the noise of Brexit negotiations, the talk in the EU this year has been that there’s potentially a bigger problem in the east. And the prospect of another rupture looks to be increasing. Poland’s de facto leader, Jaroslaw Kaczynski, hand-picked his second prime minister in two years, opting last week for western-educated Finance Minister Mateusz Morawiecki as he seeks to boost the economy after revamping the judicial system. He is another Kaczynski acolyte who has backed the increasingly authoritarian Law & Justice party’s push to seize more control of the courts, a plan condemned by the European Parliament and European Commission The mood in Brussels is that EU institutions can no longer stand by and watch a country that’s the biggest net recipient of European aid thumb its nose without paying some sort of price. Few people are discussing Poland following Britain out of the bloc, but a protracted conflict is getting more likely.

Concerns about the shift in Poland triggered calls to limit access to EU funds for countries disrespecting the democratic rule of law. At a ministerial meeting on Nov. 15 in Brussels, the issue was raised during a discussion about the 2021-2028 budget by countries including Germany, France and the Nordic states, according to two EU officials with knowledge of the matter. Poland’s refusal to take in mainly Muslim refugees was referred last week to the European Court of Justice along with Hungary and the Czech Republic. “There is a growing feeling in Brussels that solidarity cannot be a one-way street, and that it becomes difficult to justify the 10 billion-euro per year net transfers for a country that is increasingly at odds with the bloc’s values,” said Bruno Dethomas, a senior policy adviser at GPLUS consultancy in Brussels and a former EU ambassador to Poland. “It is high time the EU reacted, or it risks losing its soul.”

Poles are accustomed to their government stirring up nationalist fervor with blistering attacks on the EU while welcoming the policies of U.S. President Donald Trump. It’s railed against taking in Muslim refugees, claimed the country has been enslaved and snapped at criticism of its power grab this year. But even by Kaczynski’s standards, his speech on Nov. 10 to mark Independence Day pulled no punches. It’s up to Poles to show “the sick Europe of today the path back to health, to fundamental values, to true freedom and to the strengthening of our civilization based on Christianity,” he said.

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How confident are you in this audit?

Pentagon To Undergo First Ever Audit (ZH)

After decades of waste, overpayments, trillions of missing or improperly accounted for dollars, and most recently losing track of 44,000 US soldiers, the Pentagon is about to undergo its first audit in history conducted by 2,400 auditors from independent public accounting firms to conduct reviews across the Army, Navy, Air Force and more – followed by annual audits going forward. The announcement follows a May commitment by Pentagon comptroller David Norquist, who previously served as the CFO at the Department of Homeland Security when the agency performed its audit. “Starting an audit is a matter of driving change inside a bureaucracy that may resist it,” Norquist told members of the Armed Services Committee at the time when pressed over whether or not he could get the job done at the DHS.

According to the DoD release: “The audit is massive. It will examine every aspect of the department from personnel to real property to weapons to supplies to bases. Some 2,400 auditors will fan out across the department to conduct it, Pentagon officials said. “It is important that the Congress and the American people have confidence in DoD’s management of every taxpayer dollar,” Norquist said. -defense.gov”. The Pentagon is no stranger to criticism over serious waste and purposefully sloppy accounting. A DoD Inspector General’s report from 2016 – which appears to be unavailable on the DoD website (but fortunately WAS archived)- found that in 2015 alone a staggering $6.5 trillion in funds was unaccounted for out of the Army’s budget, with $2.8 trillion in “wrongful adjustments” occurring in just one quarter.

In 2015, the Pentagon denied trying to shelve a study detailing $125 billion in waste created by a bloated employee counts for noncombat related work such as human resources, finance, health care management and property management. The report concluded that $125 billion could be saved by making those operations more efficient. On September 10th, 2001, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld announced that “According to some estimates we cannot track $2.3 trillion in transactions,” after a Pentagon whistleblower set off a probe. A day later, the September 11th attacks happened and the accounting scandal was quickly forgotten.

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Dickens was a big spender how had little.

‘A Christmas Carol’, Money, Debt, and Success (MW)

Karl Marx was so broke in 1859 he couldn’t afford the postage stamps to mail off his new manuscript, leading the philosopher to lament, “I don’t suppose anyone has ever written about ‘money’ when so short the stuff.” He was probably right about that. However, the most famous book about money written by someone strapped for cash wasn’t “Das Kapital” or “The Communist Manifesto.” It was “A Christmas Carol.” Charles Dickens suffered not only a personal-finance crisis but a creative one, as well, in the fall of 1843, when, in a sort of literary Hail Mary pass, he committed to writing a Christmas book in an impossible six weeks. And, in a plot twist as improbable as anything he himself could have come up with, this gambit actually worked: “A Christmas Carol” became one of the best-selling and most widely adapted books of all time, a work that shaped the very meaning of the holiday itself, and singlehandedly wiped out the goose market — more on that later.

This remarkable tale, recounted in Les Standiford’s biography, “The Man Who Invented Christmas,” and just turned into a highly entertaining new movie of the same name starring Dan Stevens and Christopher Plummer, holds financial lessons for everyone, especially those of us who’ve been tormented by the ghosts of bills past due and deadlines soon to come. Dickens was in debt: to begin with. There is no doubt whatever about that. Sales of his two most recent novels were so disappointing that his publishers cut his pay. Meanwhile, the 31-year-old author and social-justice warrior had just moved into a larger, and much more expensive, home to accommodate the birth of his fifth child (like Marx, his pecuniary troubles stemmed somewhat from the age-old failure to live within one’s means).

On top of all this, his relatives, including his chronically deadbeat dad, kept hitting him up for money. His father, who later inspired the beloved character Wilkins Micawber in “David Copperfield,” was so hopeless with money that Dickens rented his parents a cottage far out in the country, where he hoped it would be harder for them to overspend. For Dickens this was all kind of galling because he had been working so hard and he didn’t have much to show for it,” said Declan Kiely, curator of a terrific ongoing exhibit on Dickens at the Morgan Library in New York. When Scrooge berates his cheerful nephew Fred, “What’s Christmas time to you but a time for paying bills without money; a time for finding yourself a year older, but not an hour richer?” that could just as well have been Dickens ranting.

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How inevitable is this?

Mass Starvation Is Humanity’s Fate (Monbiot)

[..] to keep pace with food demand, farmers in south Asia expect to use between 80 and 200% more water by the year 2050. Where will it come from? The next constraint is temperature. One study suggests that, all else being equal, with each degree celsius of warming the global yield of rice drops by 3%, wheat by 6% and maize by 7%. These predictions could be optimistic. Research published in the journal Agricultural & Environmental Letters finds that 4C of warming in the US corn belt could reduce maize yields by between 84 and 100%. The reason is that high temperatures at night disrupt the pollination process. But this describes just one component of the likely pollination crisis. Insectageddon, caused by the global deployment of scarcely tested pesticides, will account for the rest. Already, in some parts of the world, workers are now pollinating plants by hand. But that’s viable only for the most expensive crops.

[..] Because they tend to use more labour, grow a wider range of crops and work the land more carefully, small farmers, as a rule, grow more food per hectare than large ones. In the poorer regions of the world, people with fewer than five hectares own 30% of the farmland but produce 70% of the food. Since 2000, an area of fertile ground roughly twice the size of the UK has been seized by land grabbers and consolidated into large farms, generally growing crops for export rather than the food needed by the poor. While these multiple disasters unfold on land, the seas are being sieved of everything but plastic. Despite a massive increase in effort (bigger boats, bigger engines, more gear), the worldwide fish catch is declining by roughly 1% a year, as populations collapse. The global land grab is mirrored by a global sea grab: small fishers are displaced by big corporations, exporting fish to those who need it less but pay more.

About 3 billion people depend to a large extent on fish and shellfish protein. Where will it come from? All this would be hard enough. But as people’s incomes increase, their diet tends to shift from plant protein to animal protein. World meat production has quadrupled in 50 years, but global average consumption is still only half that of the UK – where we eat roughly our bodyweight in meat every year – and just over a third of the US level. Because of the way we eat, the UK’s farmland footprint (the land required to meet our demand) is 2.4 times the size of its agricultural area. If everyone aspires to this diet, how exactly do we accommodate it? The profligacy of livestock farming is astonishing. Already, 36% of the calories grown in the form of grain and pulses – and 53% of the protein – are used to feed farm animals. Two-thirds of this food is lost in conversion from plant to animal. A graph produced last week by Our World in Data suggests that, on average, you need 0.01m2 of land to produce a gram of protein from beans or peas, but 1m2 to produce it from beef cattle or sheep: a 100-fold difference.

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Monsanto is the no.1 risk to our food. Presented as our savior.

Monsanto Offers Cash To US Farmers Who Use Controversial Chemical (R.)

Monsanto will give cash back to U.S. farmers who buy a weed killer that has been linked to widespread crop damage, offering an incentive to apply its product even as regulators in several U.S. states weigh restrictions on its use. The incentive to use XtendiMax with VaporGrip, a herbicide based on a chemical known as dicamba, could refund farmers over half the sticker price of the product in 2018 if they spray it on soybeans Monsanto engineered to resist the weed killer, according to company data. The United States faced an agricultural crisis this year caused by new formulations of dicamba-based herbicides, which farmers and weed experts say harmed crops because they evaporated and drifted away from where they were sprayed. Monsanto says XtendiMax is safe when properly applied.

The company is banking on the chemical and soybean seeds engineered to resist it, called Xtend, to dominate soybean production in the United States, the world’s second-largest exporter. BASF SE and DowDuPont also sell versions of dicamba-based herbicides. Monsanto’s cash-back offer comes as federal and state regulators are requiring training for farmers who plan to spray dicamba in 2018 and limiting when it can be used. Weed specialists say the restrictions make the chemical more costly and inconvenient to apply, but Monsanto’s incentive could help convince farmers to use it anyway.

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