Sep 282022
 
 September 28, 2022  Posted by at 8:52 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  36 Responses »


Salvador Dali Bather 1924

 

Four Regions Vote To Join Russia: What’s Next? (RT)
Russia’s Main Gas Pipeline To EU Suffers Unprecedented Damage – Operator (RT)
Kremlin Comments On Possible Causes Of Nord Stream Damage (RT)
European Nat Gas Prices Soar After Gazprom Warns Ukraine Flows At Risk (ZH)
Putin Blasts West’s ‘Predatory’ Food ‘Swindle’ (RT)
Ukraine Can Use Western Weapons Against ‘Territories Seized By Russia’ – US (RT)
Americans Are Growing Tired Of Support For Ukraine Without Diplomacy (BI)
US Preparing $1.1 Billion Arms Package for Ukraine (Antiwar)
Questions Over The Value Of Military And Political Alliances (Bordachev)
White House Mulling Potential Yellen Departure After Midterms (Axios)
Nadler Feuded With Schiff, Pelosi Over Unconstitutional Trump Impeachment (Fox)
Liberal Former PM Renzi Dismisses ‘Fascism’ Brewing in Italy Claims (BB)
Meloni Contra Mundum (Gonzalez)
Human Sacrifices: are They Coming Back? (Ugo Bardi)
Pro-Vaccine Doctor Suspects Pfizer Booster Sent His Cancer Into Overdrive (CHD)
CDC Finds Lasting Post-vaccine Heart Problems In Young Adults (JTN)

 

 

I’ve assembled so much material on the pipeline sabotage, I’ll -largely- deal with that separately.

 

 

 

 

Hurricane vaccine

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rosa Koire

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Immediately the Russian Constitution will come into force in relation to these territories where everything is very clearly stated in this regard..”

Four Regions Vote To Join Russia: What’s Next? (RT)

The Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics (LPR and DPR) along with Kherson Region and part of Zaporozhye Region in southern Ukraine have voted to join Russia in referendums that were held between September 23 and 27. In Lugansk, more than 98% of voters have supported the idea to join Russia, official figures show with all the ballots counted. Donetsk has shown similar results with more than 99% of voters supporting the move. Both Zaporozhye and Kherson regions have process all the ballots by late Tuesday, with 93% and 87% of voters respectively backing the split from Ukraine and reunification with Russia. The process of integrating new regions into Russia may take some time as it requires the approval of the country’s parliament and the president.

But Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said on Friday that he was “convinced it will be fast enough.” Under the Russian constitution and the federal law on the accession of new constituent members, the procedure includes several steps. Once the regions willing to become part of the Russian Federation submit their proposals to Moscow, the president should inform parliament and the government on the matter, Senator Konstantin Kosachev explained in a Telegram post last week. If a political agreement on the accession is reached, “draft international treaties on the admission of foreign states or parts of them” to Russia should be developed, Kosachev, the vice speaker of the upper house of parliament, said.

These agreements regulate issues such as the name and status of new territories, citizenship, succession, the functioning of public authorities, the operation of legislation, and so forth. After these treaties are signed, the Russian Constitutional Court should verify if they comply with the country’s supreme law. If there are no violations, the next step will be the ratification of the documents by the lower house, the State Duma, and their approval by the upper house, the Federation Council. Simultaneously, a draft federal constitutional law on the admission of new constituent units to Russia should be submitted to the Duma. If approved, it then goes to the upper house for consideration. “This law enters into force no earlier than the entry into force of the international treaties themselves,” Kosachev noted.

Moscow warned earlier that if the Donbass republics and the two southern Ukrainian regions united with Russia, it would consider any attempts by Kiev to retake them as attacks on its own land. “Immediately the Russian Constitution will come into force in relation to these territories where everything is very clearly stated in this regard,” Peskov told journalists last week. Shortly after the regions decided to hold referendums, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced a partial mobilization that involved calling to arms some 300,000 reservists, according to the military. Media reports have suggested that Moscow allegedly plans to mobilize up to a million.

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“Experts say repairs on both pipelines could take up to several years.”

Russia’s Main Gas Pipeline To EU Suffers Unprecedented Damage – Operator (RT)

The simultaneous destruction of three gas pipelines in the Baltic Sea is unprecedented, Nord Stream AG, the operator of Nord Stream 1, said on Tuesday. It declined to provide a deadline for repairs. The pipeline had been supplying gas to the EU until late August, when Russia slashed deliveries, citing technical difficulties resulting from Western sanctions. “The destruction that occurred on the same day at once on three strings of the offshore gas pipelines of the Nord Stream system is unprecedented. It is not yet possible to estimate the timing of the restoration of the gas transmission infrastructure,” the company said.

On Monday, Danish authorities spotted a gas leak near the island of Bornholm in the Baltic Sea, and closed off an area of five nautical miles (9.26km) around the site. The discovery came shortly after the defunct Nord Stream 2 pipeline suffered a drastic loss of pressure overnight. German and Danish authorities are investigating the incidents. Nord Stream spokesman Ulrich Lissek said a “large bubble field near Bornholm” was spotted, adding that “the pipeline was never in use, just prepared for technical operation, and therefore filled with gas.” Meanwhile, on Tuesday, Sweden’s Maritime Authority also reported leaks on the Nord Stream 1 pipeline northeast of the Bornholm island in Swedish and Danish waters, Reuters reported, citing the country’s officials.

“There are two leaks on Nord Stream 1 – one in the Swedish economic zone and one in the Danish economic zone. They are very near each other,” a Swedish Maritime Administration spokesperson said. As the German Tagesspiegel newspaper reported on Tuesday, Nord Stream pipelines may have been damaged as a result of attacks. “A pressure loss in the two gas pipelines that occurred in rapid succession” could have happened due to a “targeted action,” it said. Experts say repairs on both pipelines could take up to several years. Lissek warned that it would be complicated to determine the reasons for the drop in pressure due “the sanctions regime and the lack of personnel on the ground.”

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“..a deliberate attack on the pipeline could only have been carried out using special forces, navy divers or a submarine”

Kremlin Comments On Possible Causes Of Nord Stream Damage (RT)

The Nord Stream pipelines may have been damaged in an act of sabotage, Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov suggested when asked about the possible reasons for sudden pressure loss in three of the Baltic Sea gas network’s lines. Speaking to journalists on Tuesday, Peskov commented on a statement made by Nord Stream AG, the operator of the network, which said three offshore lines of the Nord Stream pipeline system sustained “unprecedented”damage in just one day. “No option can be ruled out right now,” Peskov said when asked if the damage may have been the result of sabotage. He added that Moscow is very concerned about the situation, and called for an immediate and thorough investigation into the incident, which has implications for energy security on the “entire continent.”

Pressure in line A of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, which was pumped with gas but had yet to go into operation, suddenly dropped overnight between Sunday and Monday. Shortly after that, on Monday afternoon, both of Nord Stream 1’s pipelines also suffered a sharp loss of pressure. Sweden and Denmark’s coastguards have since reported gas leaks off the coast of Bornholm island in the Baltic Sea – one in the Swedish economic zone and one in the Danish zone – and closed off the area to maritime traffic. According to a report from the Tagesspiegel newspaper on Tuesday, Berlin believes the sudden pressure drop in three gas pipelines at the same time could not be a coincidence and is likely a “targeted attack” from either Ukraine or Russia.

The outlet explained that a deliberate attack on the pipeline could only have been carried out using special forces, navy divers or a submarine. Berlin reportedly believes the sabotage was carried out by either “Ukraine-affiliated forces” or by Russia itself as a “false flag” operation to make Ukraine look bad and drive energy prices in the EU even higher. Nord Stream 1 was completed in 2011. Construction work on Nord Stream 2 (NS2) began in 2018, and suffered delays due to political pressure and sanctions from the US. NS2 was finished and pressurized in September 2021. However, two days prior to Russia’s military operation in Ukraine, the German government put its certification on indefinite hold, and has categorically rejected any suggestion from Moscow – or domestically – to unblock the pipeline.

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With Nordstream gone, they have to pay transfer fees again, to Ukraine and Poland. In dollars and euros.

European Nat Gas Prices Soar After Gazprom Warns Ukraine Flows At Risk (ZH)

In a day of constant news surrounding European gas flows, including the potential sabotage of the Nord Stream pipeline, moments ago, Russia state-owned gas giant Gazprom PJSC warned that another major source of gas flows to Europe was at risk, just hours after three massive gas pipelines were hit by suspected sabotage. As Bloomberg reports, in a dramatic escalation of the energy standoff between Russia and Europe in little over 24 hours, the Nord Stream pipeline was knocked out by what German officials said looked like sabotage. Gazprom then said that one of two remaining routes bringing gas to Europe – via Ukraine – was at risk because of a legal spat. Specifically, as Reuters notes, Gazprom rejected all claims from Ukraine’s energy firm Naftogaz in arbitration proceedings over Russian gas transit, and had notified the arbitration court.

It also said that Russia may introduce sanctions against Naftogaz in case it further pursues the arbitration case, meaning Gazprom would be prohibited by the sanctions from paying Ukraine the transit fees. Naftogaz had initiated a new arbitration proceeding against Gazprom earlier this month, saying the Russian company did not pay for the rendered service of gas transportation through Ukraine. The company had said “funds were not paid by Gazprom, neither on time nor in full” for the gas transit. Gazprom said on Tuesday that Naftogaz had no “appropriate reasons” to reject its obligations on transit via the Sokhranovka point, a key route for Russian gas exports to Europe. In May, Ukraine suspended the flow of gas through Sokhranovka, which it said delivers almost a third of the fuel piped from Russia to Europe through Ukraine, blaming Moscow for the move and saying it would move the flows elsewhere.

Following the report that Russia may soon halt natgas transit via Ukraine, gas prices quickly jumped almost 20% as traders factored in the prospect that Europe will have to live without Russian gas this winter – and beyond. Gazprom said that a legal dispute risks prompting Moscow to sanction Ukraine’s Naftogaz. If that happened, then Gazprom would be unable to pay transit fees, the company said on Telegram, putting at risk flows. “In practice, this will mean a ban on Gazprom from fulfilling obligations to sanctioned bodies under completed transactions, including financial transactions,” the company said. If, or rather when, supplies through Ukraine are shut down, it would leave Gazprom sending gas only via the TurkStream pipeline to Turkey and a handful of European countries that haven’t severed business ties with Russia.

Winter is coming

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“Russia is set to harvest a record amount of grain this year [..] But Russian food products have a difficult time finding their way to the global market due to Western economic sanctions, as do Russian fertilizers..”

Putin Blasts West’s ‘Predatory’ Food ‘Swindle’ (RT)

“Predatory” monetary and trade policies pursued by the US and its allies are the primary cause of the global food crisis, Russian President Vladimir Putin has said. Western nations are using their wealth and ability to print money to vacuum up food products from the global market, the Russian leader said during a government meeting on Tuesday. The unfolding crisis has been in the making for several years, he claimed. “Some leading nations have financial and food policies that led to the result we are observing now,” Putin said, adding that the behavior could be described as “predatory, without any exaggeration.” He noted that the US was a net exporter of food products last year, but now it is a net importer.

The Russian leader also reiterated his criticism of the Ukraine grain deal, which allowed Kiev to export food via the Black Sea. The arrangement was mediated by the UN and Türkiye, but Russia believes it is not working as intended, arguing that the shipments do little to alleviate food shortages in needy nations. Putin cited last week’s maritime traffic statistics in relation to the scheme, pointing out that most of the ships carrying Ukrainian grain that didn’t report Türkiye as their destination went to one of the EU nations. “Are they the poorest nations or what? The situation remains the same. Embarrassing as it sounds, but this is plain swindle, and nothing else,” he said.

Russia is set to harvest a record amount of grain this year, which is predicted to reach 150 million tons, including some 100 million tons of wheat, Putin said. But Russian food products have a difficult time finding their way to the global market due to Western economic sanctions, as do Russian fertilizers, he added. The West “is causing the global food crisis,” he claimed. The US and its allies deny that the restrictions they have imposed on Russian trade over the country’s military campaign in Ukraine are targeting its food and fertilizer exports. Officials in Moscow say that, while those products are technically not banned, restrictions on things like insurance and port services for Russian merchant ships effectively curb the country’s ability to export food and fertilizers.

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“Blinken also accused Russia of a “diabolical scheme” to deport or “disappear” the local Ukrainian population and “bus in” Russians..”

Ukraine Can Use Western Weapons Against ‘Territories Seized By Russia’ – US (RT)

Washington has no objections to Kiev using Western-supplied weapons to target territories that may decide to join Russia, as the US considers the vote to do so illegitimate, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Tuesday. The US and its allies have supplied Ukraine with a variety of weapons, including tube and rocket artillery. At a joint press conference with his Indian counterpart Dr. Subrahmanyam Jaishankar in Washington, Blinken was asked if the US had any objections to Ukraine using those weapons to attack targets in Donetsk, Lugansk, Zaporozhye and Kherson, which just wrapped up a vote on joining Russia. “We will never recognize the annexation of Ukrainian territory by Russia,” Blinken told reporters.

“Ukraine has the absolute right to defend itself throughout its territory, including to take back the territory that has been illegally seized, one way or another, by Russia. And the equipment, the weapons that we and many other countries are providing, have been used very effectively to do just that.” Russia’s “annexation” of the Donbass republics and the two regions will make zero difference to either Ukraine or the US, Blinken insisted. “The Ukrainians will continue to do what they need to do to get back the land that has been taken from them. We will continue to support them in that effort.” In June, when the US first sent long-range HIMARS rocket artillery to Ukraine, Blinken said he had received “assurances” from Kiev that they will not be used on Russian territory, and that he believed them due to a “strong trust bond.”

Kiev’s forces have since used the US-supplied weapons to target civilians in Donbass, Kherson and Zaporozhye, which are under Russian control. Ukraine has also bombed Crimea and border towns in the Russian regions of Kursk and Belgorod. Crimea rejoined Russia in March 2014, after the US-backed coup in Kiev, while Donetsk and Lugansk declared independence. Blinken also accused Russia of a “diabolical scheme” to deport or “disappear” the local Ukrainian population and “bus in” Russians who would then vote in a manipulated referendum to get annexed by Moscow.

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Given that there is no real information available in the US, this is quite the poll.

Americans Are Growing Tired Of Support For Ukraine Without Diplomacy (BI)

A new poll suggests that many Americans are growing weary as the US government continues its support of Ukraine in its war with Russia and want to see diplomatic efforts to end the war if aid is to continue. According to a poll conducted by the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft and Data for Progress, 57% of likely voters strongly or somewhat support the US pursuing diplomatic negotiations as soon as possible to end the war in Ukraine, even if it requires Ukraine making compromises with Russia. Just 32% of respondents were strongly or somewhat opposed to this. And nearly half of the respondents (47%) said they only support the continuation of US military aid to Ukraine if the US is involved in ongoing diplomacy to end the war, while 41% said they support the continuation of US military aid to Ukraine whether the US is involved in ongoing diplomacy or not.

The Biden administration and Congress need to do more diplomatically to help end the war, according to 49% of likely voters, while 37% said they have done enough in this regard, the poll showed. “Americans recognize what many in Washington don’t: Russia’s war in Ukraine is more likely to end at the negotiating table than on the battlefield. And there is a brewing skepticism of Washington’s approach to this war, which has been heavy on tough talk and military aid, but light on diplomatic strategy and engagement,” said Trita Parsi, executive vice president at the Quincy Institute. “‘As long as it takes’ isn’t a strategy, it’s a recipe for years of disastrous and destructive war — conflict that will likely bring us no closer to the goal of securing a prosperous, independent Ukraine.

US leaders need to show their work: explain to the American people how you plan to use your considerable diplomatic leverage to bring this war to an end,” Parsi added. The poll found close to half of likely US voters (48%) somewhat or strongly oppose the US providing aid to Ukraine at current levels if long-term global economic hardship, including in the US, occurs. Meanwhile, the poll showed that only four-in-10 Americans somewhat or strongly support the US providing aid to Ukraine at current levels if this occurs.

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“..will bring total US spending on the war since Russia invaded to $65.9 billion, which is the same number as Russia’s entire military budget for 2021.”

US Preparing $1.1 Billion Arms Package for Ukraine (Antiwar)

The US is preparing a new $1.1 billion arms package for Ukraine that will be announced soon, Reuters reported Tuesday, citing unnamed US officials. The weapons package will likely include HIMARS rocket systems, HIMARS ammunition, counter-drone systems, radar systems, training, and technical support. The arms package is expected to be provided to Kyiv using the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative (USAI) as opposed to sending the arms directly from US military stockpiles. The USAI allows the Biden administration to purchase military equipment for Ukraine from the US arms industry.


The new package will bring the total amount of US arms pledged for Ukraine since Russia invaded on February 24 to over $16 billion. Funds for Ukraine are still being pulled from the $40 billion aid package President Biden signed into law back in May, but Congress is preparing to authorize more spending to support the war. Congress unveiled on Tuesday a new $12.3 billion aid package for Ukraine that will be included in a stopgap funding bill that needs to be passed this week to avoid a government shutdown. The $12.3 billion includes military and economic support for Ukraine and will bring total US spending on the war since Russia invaded to $65.9 billion, which is the same number as Russia’s entire military budget for 2021.

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Valdai Club Programme Director Timofey Bordachev.

Questions Over The Value Of Military And Political Alliances (Bordachev)

The continuing military and diplomatic clash between Russia and the West, led by the United States, raises questions to which, until recently, the answers seemed obvious. These include the phenomena of permanent alliances and allied relations. It is no secret that the behaviour of Moscow’s formal allies in the CSTO (Collective Security Treaty Organization) and the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) in today’s environment raises questions for the Kremlin, while Russia’s opponents are raising hopes that the existence of these blocs is no longer an advantage, but a problem, for Russia’s foreign and defence policy. We see examples of individual member countries of the CSTO or the EAEU meeting US demands in matters related to economic warfare against Russia. This makes one wonder how important and necessary are Russia’s allies when it cannot, like the US, exercise authoritarian control over its foreign and defence policies?

The phenomenon of permanent alliance relations is a relatively recent invention in international politics – it emerged after the Second World War and it is entirely unknown whether the next round of global upheavals of a similar scale will see it survive. Even if we are not all blown to bits by a general nuclear catastrophe in the coming years, what is happening makes the prospects for all the phenomena that have shaped the fabric of international life in recent decades, without exception, highly uncertain. Today, the benchmark example of a permanent alliance of sovereign states is European integration. Another similar example is the NATO bloc, in which participation is cemented by the unconditional authority of a power far superior to its allies and not shy in making that clear.

It is no coincidence that the conflict around Ukraine, the first major war of the new era in international politics, is linked to the development of these two alliances. A strong group of states inevitably creates conflicts around itself. Indeed, this becomes a consequence of the fact that it protects the interests of its members. [..] the whole idea of an alliance in the usual sense of the word has lost all meaning. First and foremost, for its leading participant. The small member states obviously have neither alternative options nor the military, political or demographic resources for fully independent survival. This helps us to solve the problem of the formal preservation of such associations, even if they lose much of their necessary functions and content. However, it should be understood that, in the future, Russia, like its neighbors, will either have to give up the idea of institutionalizing its relations or resort to rather more authoritarian methods of governance.

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A decade of financial disaster.

White House Mulling Potential Yellen Departure After Midterms (Axios)

White House officials are quietly preparing for the potential departure of Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen after the midterms, the first and most consequential exit in what could be a broad reorganization of President Biden’s economic team, according to people familiar with the matter. While her potential departure would give Biden an opportunity to respond to public concern over his handling of the economy, it would also create an immediate political headache: finding a successor who can be confirmed by the Senate. The process is in the early stages and a decision on Yellen, or any Cabinet replacement, has not been made. Multiple sources stressed the outcome of November’s election, including who controls the Senate, will factor into whether she stays.

Yellen will also have some say in her fate, and with the world’s economy teetering, there could be a convincing case for her to stay. In addition to Yellen, officials are also considering the possibility that Brian Deese, the director of the National Economic Council, will leave early next year. Deese’s departure would present an opportunity for Gene Sperling, who is currently coordinating the implementation of the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan, to serve an unprecedented third term as NEC director after holding that post in the Clinton and Obama administrations. Cecilia Rouse, the chair of the Council of Economic Advisers, is also expected to return to her academic post in the spring of 2023, opening up another Cabinet-level economic position.

Yellen, an economist by trade and at heart, has been reluctant to make overly political arguments when they violate her core academic beliefs. The former Fed and CEA chair has disagreed with the White House on several high-profile issues, including the White House faulting corporations for increasing inflation and — most recently — Biden’s decision to forgive some student debt. She has also made several statements that White House officials have privately viewed as blunders. Yellen publicly admitted this summer she was wrong on inflation, and last year said it would be a “plus” if the Fed raised interest rates.

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“..that Trump would not be able to face his accusers before being impeached did not sit right with Nadler, who warned Pelosi and Schiff of the ramifications it would have in the long run.”

You made your bed, Jerry. Lie in it.

Nadler Feuded With Schiff, Pelosi Over Unconstitutional Trump Impeachment (Fox)

A new book reveals that House Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., was at odds with how House Select Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s handling of impeachment proceedings against former President Trump, insisting that the methods used by the prominent Democrats were “unconstitutional” and could be used to attack the party. The revelation comes in a book set to be released on October 18 titled, “Unchecked: The Untold Story Behind Congress’s Botched Impeachments of Donald Trump,” written by Politico Playbook co-author Rachael Bade and Washington Post reporter Karoun Demirjian. The book chronicles the methods Democrats used to target Trump.

In October 2019, amid the Democrats’ plan to hold a full House vote on a resolution outlining the structure of impeachment proceedings against Trump, Nadler, according to the book, took issue with how Schiff, who was tapped by Pelosi to lead impeachment efforts, was prepared to proceed with the impeachment without due process for Trump. Worried about the situation and the likelihood that his Judiciary Committee would not be able to cross-examine witnesses as the committee had done traditionally, Nadler confronted Schiff about the planned process, and, according to the book, said: “It’s unfair, and it’s unprecedented, and it’s unconstitutional.” “I don’t appreciate your tone,” Schiff allegedly responded. “I worry you’re putting us in a box for our investigation.”

Sidelined by Pelosi to handle impeachment proceedings in the House, the book claims Nadler made an “effort to get back into Pelosi’s good graces” and that his “aides sucked up to her staff relentlessly” in an attempt to show that his panel was prepared to step in and assist. Striving to earn approval from Pelosi, Nadler hired attorneys and had his team pour through records and books from the impeachments of former Presidents Nixon and Johnson. Those efforts worked and led Pelosi and Schiff to reconsider the Judiciary Committee’s involvement in the process, although they had “their own ideas about how he should run his committee process,” according to the book.

“She didn’t want the Judiciary panel to interview witnesses at all,” the book’s authors wrote. “Pelosi simply didn’t trust the panel — which was stacked with liberal crusaders and hotheaded conservatives — to handle the rollout of the complex Ukraine narrative with the careful, compelling treatment it required. She couldn’t afford another Nadler screwup. The Judiciary chairman could focus on the legal business of crafting the articles of impeachment and have academics testify, she allowed. But that was it.” Nadler’s frustration with the pair of Democrats grew. Research conducted by his team proved that presidents facing impeachment from Congress had been allowed to defend themselves before the House Judiciary Committee, with attorneys for the president having the opportunity to attend hearings, as well as cross-examine testifying witnesses or call their own.

That did not matter to Schiff, and the fact that Trump would not be able to face his accusers before being impeached did not sit right with Nadler, who warned Pelosi and Schiff of the ramifications it would have in the long run. “If we’re going to impeach, we need to show the country that we gave the president ample opportunity to defend himself,” Nadler told them, according to the book.

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“She is my rival and we will continue to fight each other, but the idea that now there is a risk of fascism in Italy is absolutely fake news.” – Renzi

Liberal Former PM Renzi Dismisses ‘Fascism’ Brewing in Italy Claims (BB)

Former liberal Prime Minister of Italy Matteo Renzi has dismissed alarmist claims in the global media that incoming Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni is a “danger to democracy”, telling CNN “the idea that now there is a risk of fascism in Italy is absolutely fake news.” “Personally, I was against Giorgia Meloni. I’m not her best friend. We grew up together in politics, but we are, and will be, rivals, always,” said Renzi, who served as Prime Minister of Italy for nearly three years until December 2016, and is the leader of the liberal “Italia Viva” party. “At the same time, I think [Meloni] is not a danger [to] Italian democracy,” Renzi continued. “She is my rival, and we will continue to fight each other, but the idea that now there is a risk of fascism in Italy is absolutely fake news.”


The former Prime Minister went on to say that Meloni won Sunday night’s election, “particularly because populism, a lot of times, [wins] in Italy.” “She has a majority coalition, and probably she will be — I think next month — the next Prime Minister,” Renzi said, before doubling down on his claim that “democracy” is not at risk. “That is very important, because I fought against her, but at the same time, I think there is not a danger for fascism in Italy,” Renzi affirmed. Elsewhere in the interview, Renzi mentioned that he is “exactly the opposite of Giorgia Meloni, because she is a sovereigntist and I’m for Europe” [the European Union]. The international media has been quick to compare her to wartime fascist leader Mussolini, a serious allegation. Yet as Renzi’s comments demonstrate, not even Meloni’s own opposition inside Italy believes this to be true.

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“Me, I believe Mussolini was a good politician,” Meloni said in an interview. “By which I mean that everything he did, he did for Italy.”

Meloni Contra Mundum (Gonzalez)

[..] liberal democracies across the West unified this weekend in denouncing the democratic will of the Italian people, who have just propelled Giorgia Meloni and her right-wing Italian nationalist party to electoral victory. Man is a symbolic animal, and Meloni’s victory is seen as a symbolic rejection of Western liberalism. Whether she lives up to that potential is yet to be seen. But the electricity of the moment is palpable: the Italians have voted against the times. It’s difficult to dislike this atypical politician. Meloni’s father abandoned his family when she was just 11 years old, leaving her mother to raise her alone. She has working-classes bona fides, working as a nanny, waitress, and bartender to support herself. She has been politically engaged since she was a teenager and has never been shy about her views.

“Me, I believe Mussolini was a good politician,” Meloni said in an interview. “By which I mean that everything he did, he did for Italy.” Though she may not have read Legutko, Meloni has also noticed the similarities between communism and liberal democracy. “We did not fight against and defeat communism in order to replace it with a new internationalist regime,” she said during the National Conservatism conference in Rome, “but to permit independent nation-states once again to defend the freedom, identity, and sovereignty of their peoples.” Meloni has denounced the mass immigration of non-European people to European lands and called for naval blockades in the Mediterranean to thwart migrant smugglers. She also went against the grain on COVID-19 vaccines and lockdowns. Meloni was the only party leader to oppose the so-called Green Pass—a vaccine passport that would have been required to work, travel, and shop.

Under different circumstances, the West might be celebrating the ascent of this underdog. But her politics are, for the most part, outside the West’s liberal democratic consensus, which is why Italians love her. Most of all, Meloni breaks the consensus on social and cultural issues at the center of liberalism’s moral universe. She emphatically opposes abortion and same-sex marriage, rejects gender ideology and the promotion of alternative sexual lifestyles. At a rally before an audience that stood to its feet and applauded ceaselessly at her words, Meloni thundered: “Yes to natural families, no to the LGBT lobby, yes to sexual identity, no to gender ideology, yes to the culture of life, no to the abyss of death, no to the violence of Islam, yes to safer borders, no to mass immigration, yes to work for our people.”

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“You may not like ms. Meloni’s political orientation but she is a human being and, as such, she deserves respect, especially considering that she has taken upon herself a tremendously difficult task.”

Human Sacrifices: are They Coming Back? (Ugo Bardi)

If there ever was a society under stress, it is ours. We passed all the limits of survival: destroyed the oldr-growth forests, killed off large number of species, poisoned the atmosphere, depleted our mineral resources, eroded the fertile soil, polluted water and the atmosphere, set the planet on a path to an irreversible warming and a few more little things, including having deployed a sufficient number of nuclear warhead to wreck the ecosystem and, most likely, kill everybody. And we haven’t renounced to our beloved habit of making war against each other. Would you be surprised if we were to indulge in large scale human sacrifices? We are not yet there, but the path seems to be traced. Have you noted how popular are the “Zombie” movies?

Take a look at them in light of what I have been saying here: do you see them as a blueprint for the mass extermination of suburbanites? First starve them, easy: just stop the delivery to the local supermarkets and service stations. Once they run out of food and fuel, they are doomed. Then, while they are still able to stumble along, finish them off with a bullet to the head. Truly, the fascination with this idea casts much light on what our society has in mind for the near future. We are not yet to the point of seeing the elites booking zombie-killing safaris in the suburbs of our cities. But other possible large scale sacrifices are possible. I already mentioned how the German government had hired the country’s doctors to cull the undesirables. They had complied, happily. That could be easily done in our times, too.

The concept of human sacrifice, though, is not about numbers, but about the visible high-status of the victim. Now, after the electoral victory of Giorgia Meloni in Italy, many people commented by publishing on their social accounts the images of Mussolini’s dead body and of his lover Claretta Petacci. A clear message to Ms. Meloni, just as the many published images showing her upside-down, just like Mussolini and Petacci were. Will she undergo the same treatment as Mussolini? For sure, Italy is going toward a difficult period and whoever will lead the country risks being deemed responsible for whatever disaster will befell Italy in the near future. And it is also true that people can be extremely nasty when they are in a dire situation. You may not like ms. Meloni’s political orientation but she is a human being and, as such, she deserves respect, especially considering that she has taken upon herself a tremendously difficult task. We can and we should wish her success. Good luck, Giorgia, you’ll need a lot of it.

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They don’t want to believe themselves.

Pro-Vaccine Doctor Suspects Pfizer Booster Sent His Cancer Into Overdrive (CHD)

Michel Goldman, M.D., Ph.D., professor of immunology and pharmacotherapy at the Université libre de Bruxelles in Belgium, suspects his third dose of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine may have sent his cancer into overdrive. Goldman, 67, is one of Europe’s best-known champions of medical research and a lifelong promoter of vaccines. But he told The Atlantic he wants discussion of the COVID-19 vaccine to be transparent — so he went public about his suspicion that the Pfizer booster shot he received on Sept. 22, 2021, may have induced rapid progression of his angioimmunoblastic T-cell lymphoma (AITL), a type of lymphoma he’d been diagnosed with before he got the booster shot. After his diagnosis, Goldman said he rushed to get the booster shot, believing he would need it more than most people because once he started chemotherapy, his immune system would be compromised.

But after receiving the shot, Goldman’s follow-up CT scan showed something unexpected: Within only a few days, his cancer had grown so fast that cancerous points were lighting up all over his scan. “It looked like someone had set off fireworks inside Michel’s body,” The Atlantic reported. Goldman and his brother, Serge Goldman, a fellow scientist and head of nuclear medicine at the teaching hospital of the Université libre de Bruxelles, suspected Goldman’s COVID-19 booster shot may have triggered the rapid proliferation of cancerous growth in his body. The initial CT scan had been “a bit disturbing,” Serge Goldman told The Atlantic, because it showed an asymmetrical cluster of cancerous nodes around Goldman’s left armpit, where Michel’s first two doses of vaccine had been delivered.

The CT scan done after Michel’s third dose showed the cancer’s asymmetry had flipped and was clustered by his right armpit, where he received the third shot. The brothers knew it could be a mere coincidence, but they thought it was important to investigate the possibility that the vaccine might be behind the clustering — because it could mean other people with certain forms of cancer might be at risk of a COVID-19 vaccine causing their cancer to progress more rapidly. So on Nov. 25, 2021, the brothers — who had written prior papers together — and other colleagues published a case report in which they described Michel Goldman’s experience and urged the scientific community to study the phenomenon to see if it occurred in patients diagnosed with AITL.

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The CDC is politics disguised as science.

CDC Finds Lasting Post-vaccine Heart Problems In Young Adults (JTN)

The CDC continues to erase distinctions by COVID-19 vaccination status in public health guidance as ongoing global research — including its own — documents the mediocre performance of COVID vaccines and their unexpectedly high rates of lasting harm in some groups. Vaccination status is no longer used “to inform source control, screening testing, or post-exposure recommendations” for healthcare personnel, the Friday update to their CDC guidance says. The agency “[c]larified” that healthcare facilities, including nursing homes, have discretion on whether to screen-test asymptomatic personnel. It also now says asymptomatic patients “in general” do not require “empiric use of Transmission-Based Precautions” after exposure to an infected person.

A CDC study of 12-29 year-olds with heart inflammation following mRNA vaccination, published last week in The Lancet Child & Adolescent Health, found that 1 in 6 still had not “fully recovered” at least 90 days after myocarditis onset, including 1 in 100 who hadn’t improved at all. Myocarditis has increased so markedly among youth since vaccines were authorized for them that an Ivy League-affiliated hospital started running TV ads this month for its treatment in children. New York-Presbyterian marked the ad’s Sept. 6 YouTube video private less than two weeks later, following criticism that it was trying to “normalize” a vaccine-induced condition. The CDC’s COVID-19 Response Team found more than 800 myocarditis reports to the Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System from Jan. 12 to Nov. 5, 2021 that matched the parameters for age and time since onset.

Excluding those without phone numbers or who couldn’t be reached, they studied 393 individuals whose healthcare providers, mostly cardiologists, completed a survey. The median age was 17 and overwhelmingly male. The team deemed four in five patients “fully or probably fully” recovered (320). But two-thirds of those initially required non-intensive care hospitalization, and 27% required intensive care. At their last provider followup, 28% of the fully recovered were still on doctor-ordered physical activity restrictions. The figures for the 65 patients who were not fully recovered: 62% non-intensive hospitalization and 18% intensive, and 48% still on physical activity restrictions. Less than a third had been cleared for physical activity, half the figure for the fully recovered, who had a median clearance of 10 fewer days (104).

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Beach front

 

 

 

 

 

 


Staircase

 

 

 

 

Bird

 

 

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in virustime with Paypal, Bitcoin and Patreon.

 

 

 

Aug 182022
 


Odilon Redon Fallen angel 1872

 

Something is Looming Geopolitically, We Better Start Taking It Seriously (CTH)
A Eurasian Jigsaw: BRI and INSTC (Escobar)
Russia Urges International Inspection Of Shelled Nuclear Site (RT)
Europe’s Powers Gave Ukraine No New Military Pledges In July (Pol.eu)
Ukraine Could Be Put On ‘Ammo Diet’ – US Military Expert (RT)
Germany Declares War On Europe And Refuses To Ban Russians (CdS)
Putin First, Populists Next – Who To Blame For The Energy Crisis? (RT)
Russia Names Main Victim Of US Energy ‘Victory’ (RT)
Government Must Quickly Start Repairing Purchasing Power – Professor (AD)
Central Bank Warns Gov’t: Be Cautious With Purchasing Power Repairs (NOS)
UK Green Party Calls For Nationalisation Of Big Five Energy Firms (G.)
Audio Tapes In Bill Clinton’s Sock Drawer And Mar-a-Lago Search Dispute (JTN)
FBI Sought Documents Trump Hoarded for Years, Including about Russiagate (NW)
CDC Admits To Botched Covid-19 Responses (RT)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Roth

Roth/Ratner

 

 

France

 

 


Gas & electricity bill for a business owner in the South of Italy. – July 2021: EUR 120k – July 2022: EUR 979k In his own words: ”A holiday in July would have been more profitable than running my business with these input costs”

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lawyer sundance: “.. the think-tanks and high-minded climate change ideologues do not have the ability to manage a transition and still meet the needs of people..”

Something is Looming Geopolitically, We Better Start Taking It Seriously (CTH)

As a result of western governments’ taking collective action under the auspices of a ‘climate change’ agenda, we are on the cusp of something happening with ramifications that no one has ever seen before. Western governments’, specifically western Europe, North America (U.S-Canada) and Australia/New Zealand, are intentionally trying to lower economic activity to meet the intentional drop in energy production. This is the core consequence of the Build Back Better agenda as promoted by the World Economic Forum. Anyone who says there is a reference point to determine both the short-term and long-term consequences is lying. There is no precedent for nations’ collectively and intentionally trying to reduce economic activity.

Hiding behind the false justification that current inflation is driven by too much demand, central banks in Europe, the Bank of England, Bank of Canada and U.S. federal reserve are raising interest rates. The outcome we are currently feeling is an intentional economic contraction and global recession. The Build Back Better monetary policy is successfully shrinking western economic activity; however, the impacted nations that produce goods for markets in North America and Europe, specifically southeast Asia, Japan and China, are not raising interest rates in an effort to try and offset the drop in demand. China has announced they are dropping their central bank rates in a desperate effort to lower costs and keep their export dependent economy working.

Underneath all of this, is a drop in energy production in the same nations trying to lower economic activity. The political policymakers are attempting to manage this process without informing the citizens of the unspoken goal. Shortages of oil, coal and natural gas are self-inflicted problems, all part of the BBB agenda. Beyond the massive increases in energy costs, which is the true source of inflation and a direct/intentional outcome of the BBB effort, Europe is now facing a looming winter without the energy resources to heat homes and sustain people. Things are going to be very uncomfortable in Europe this winter as roaming brownouts are now predicted.

As the collective west attempts to, using their words, “manage the transition,” they do not have mechanisms to control an outcome of this magnitude. It is simply too big a situation to manage. Where the rubber meets the road, the think-tanks and high-minded climate change ideologues do not have the ability to manage a transition and still meet the needs of people. Beyond the esoteric thinking, there are real consequences from these actions.

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What would we know about modern Asian politics without Pepe Escobar?

A Eurasian Jigsaw: BRI and INSTC (Escobar)

There’s no question that the proxy war in Ukraine between the US and Russia has been creating serious problems for BRI expansion. After all, the US war on Russia is also a war against BRI. The top three BRI corridors from Xinjiang to Europe are the New Eurasian Land Bridge, the China-Central Asia-West Asia Economic Corridor, and the China-Russia-Mongolia Economic Corridor. The New Eurasian Land Bridge uses the Trans-Siberian and a second link through Xinjiang-Kazakhstan (via the dry land port of Khorgos) and then Russia. The corridor via Mongolia is in fact two corridors: one from Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei to Inner Mongolia and then Russia; and the other from Dalian and Shenyang and then to Chita in Russia, near the Chinese border.

As it stands, the Chinese are not using Land Bridge and the Mongolian corridor as much as before, mainly because of western sanctions on Russia. The current BRI emphasis is via Central Asia and West Asia, with one branch then bisecting toward the Persian Gulf and on the Mediterranean. And this is where we see another – highly complex – level of intersection quickly developing: how the increasing importance for China of Central Asia and West Asia mixes with the increasing importance of the INSTC for both Russia and Iran in their trade with India. Call it the friendly vector of the War of Transportation Corridors.

The hardcore vector – real war – is already being deployed by the usual suspects. They are predictably bent on destabilizing and/or smashing any node of BRI/INSTC/EAEU/SCO Eurasia integration, by any means necessary: be it in Ukraine, Afghanistan, Balochistan, the Central Asian “stans” or Xinjiang. As far as the major Eurasian actors are concerned, that’s bound to be an Anglo-American train to nowhere.

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Someone will find excuses not to go. They first need to hide evidence.

Russia Urges International Inspection Of Shelled Nuclear Site (RT)

Russia is calling on the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to visit the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant as soon as possible to fulfill its mandate as the UN’s nuclear watchdog, a senior Russian diplomat said. “We would like such an IAEA mission to take place soon. Russia will do its best to facilitate it,” Igor Vishnevetsky, the deputy foreign minister for arms control, said during a Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty conference on Wednesday. The inspection was supposed to happen sometime ago, he added, but was derailed “not due to a fault of ours.” The diplomat pointed the finger at Ukraine, saying that its regular attacks on the nuclear site was why it was not safe for IAEA monitors to visit it. “People should not attack nuclear sites, should not use artillery or other weapons against nuclear power plants,” Vishnevetsky stressed.


“The Ukrainian side knows it very well, and nevertheless does it, effectively committing acts of nuclear terrorism.” The Ukrainian power plant, the largest of its kind in Europe, comes under regular artillery shelling. One projectile this week reportedly struck ten meters from a container holding spent nuclear fuel. Kiev denies carrying out the strikes and claims that Russian troops are shelling the plant to discredit Ukraine. It also accused Russia of stationing its military forces at the Zaporozhye plant. The UN would neither confirm nor deny allegations by either side and called for a demilitarized zone around the nuclear facility. The US said that Russia had to cede control of the plant and the city of Energodar, where it’s located, to Ukraine, to prevent the risk of a nuclear disaster.

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“..European military aid commitments for Ukraine have been on a downward trend since the end of April…”

Europe’s Powers Gave Ukraine No New Military Pledges In July (Pol.eu)

Throughout all of July, Europe’s six largest countries offered Ukraine no new bilateral military commitments, according to new data — the first month that had happened since Russia invaded in February. The revelation is a sign that despite historic shifts in European defense policy — which have seen once reluctant countries like France and Germany ship arms to Ukraine — military aid to Ukraine may be waning just as Kyiv launches a crucial counteroffensive. The fresh data, covering the U.K., France, Germany, Spain, Italy and Poland and set for release on Thursday, comes from the Kiel Institute for the World Economy, which has been maintaining a Ukraine Support Tracker throughout the war.

It illustrates a point Ukrainian military officials and politicians have been repeatedly making: That major European powers are not keeping up with the military aid coming from the U.S., and that having led the charge, big-hitting Britain and Poland may be running out of steam. Military specialists and some members of European Parliament have increasingly echoed the point recently. Christoph Trebesch, head of the team compiling the Ukraine Support Tracker, said the organization’s data showed European military aid commitments for Ukraine have been on a downward trend since the end of April. “Despite the war entering a critical phase, new aid initiatives have dried up,” he said.

Western allies did meet last week in Cophenhagen to gather pledges for boosting Ukraine’s military, amassing €1.5 billion in commitments. But Trebesch, who said his team is still analyzing the numbers, cautioned the figure “is meager compared to what was raised in earlier conferences.” Trebesch argued that European countries should be considering the Ukraine war as more akin to the eurozone crisis or the coronavirus pandemic, two events that promoted the Continent to funnel hundreds of billions into emergency funding measures. “When you compare the speed at which the checkbook came out and the size of the money that was delivered, compared to what is on offer for Ukraine, it is tiny in comparison,” he said.

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You won’t see it in the rhetoric, but “we” are withdrawing.

Ukraine Could Be Put On ‘Ammo Diet’ – US Military Expert (RT)

Ukraine’s European backers may be about to put the country on an “ammunition diet”, an American military analyst has claimed in an interview with Germany’s Der Spiegel. Michael Kofman said these nations may already have reached their limit in terms of weapons supplies to Kiev. In an article published on Tuesday, Kofman was quoted as saying it is not in the Ukrainian military’s best interests to bide its time, as the weather will soon begin to worsen, making any counteroffensive more difficult to pull off. On top of that, according to the US expert, Russian troops could use a hiatus to regroup and “solve some of their personnel problems.” He noted that time would be on Kiev’s side if Western support was unlimited. However, that is likely not the case, and the Ukrainian leadership is well aware of this, Kofman suggested.

He added that the “Ukrainians are apparently quite concerned about for how long they can expect further support, especially from the Europeans.” The analyst went on to suggest that Kiev’s European backers may already have “given Ukraine most of the weapons they are ready to give.” “The Ukrainians will likely go on a kind of ammunition diet,” Kofman predicted. The analyst told journalists that, with this in mind, the leadership in Kiev may be concerned that Ukraine “could come under pressure to accept the stalemate” in the absence of any major success by the start of next year. Such a scenario “would be a defeat for Ukraine,” he noted. Kofman concluded that Kiev’s ability to reclaim territories seized by Russia ultimately hinges on the extent of its Western support.

He also acknowledged “some small Russian successes in the southern part of Donbass, like in Peski,” adding, however, that the offensive is largely being carried out by the militaries of the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) and the Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR), as well as by “Wagner mercenaries.” When asked about the possibility of a Ukrainian counteroffensive to reclaim the southern city of Kherson, which is currently held by Russian forces, Kofman pointed out that while Kiev has a lot of personnel on paper, only a limited number of units are “really trained and equipped for that.”

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Translated from Le Courrier du Soir. “The European Union on the brink of a new unprecedented political crisis.”

Germany Declares War On Europe And Refuses To Ban Russians (CdS)

The European Union on the brink of a new unprecedented political crisis. Less than a year after the violent crisis over Russian gas which had deeply divided the Union, it is now the thorny issue of the visa granted to Russian citizens which risks provoking a real internal war. Indeed, it all started a few days ago when the Ukrainian President, Zelensky, asked that European countries prohibit access to their soil to all Russian nationals. His wishes seem granted because for three days, EU countries have been working hard to stop granting visas to Russians. But the project risks leading to a total fiasco because Germany, Europe’s leading economic power, is firmly opposed to it. This is at least the information that Lecourrier-du-soir.com obtained on August 16 from several reliable sources including the Euronews media.

Indeed, according to information provided by this press organ, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz expressed his disagreement (on this subject) during a trip to Oslo. In front of the press, his remarks were blunt. “This is not the Russian people’s war. It’s Putin’s war and we have to be clear about it,” he said. The German Chancellor also made a point of pointing out that several Russian citizens are fleeing Russia because they are not in phase with the policy of the regime in place. Meanwhile, the subject is already on the table but could trigger a new political crisis within the EU where some believe that banning Russians from entering Europe is a good move. This is at least the opinion of Kaja Kallas, Prime Minister of Estonia who, in a tweet posted on August 09, did not mince words.

“Stop granting visas to Russians. Visiting Europe is a privilege, not a human right. Airspace must be closed. This means that while Schengen countries continue to issue visas, Russia’s neighbors bear the burden. It is time to end tourism from Russia immediately”, she reacted. And Estonia is not the only European country to refuse to grant visas to Russians. Because, on August 14, in a tweet posted on his official account, Andriy Yermak, close to the Polish president, also made it known that his country will prohibit access to its territory to all Russian nationals.

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“..close the local swimming pool amid the record summer heat, citing a choice between the cost of feeding school kids increasingly pricy organic food in the cafeteria… or keeping the facility open.”

Putin First, Populists Next – Who To Blame For The Energy Crisis? (RT)

At the outset of the Ukraine conflict, Western officials proclaimed their unity against Moscow and vowed to accelerate their transition away from Russian fossil fuels and towards greener energy. The idea was to deprive the Kremlin of revenues which, in their minds, would result in defunding the military operation in Ukraine. So they went full scorched-earth on their own cheap energy supply – that is, gas from Europe’s largest country – and sanctioned it. It wasn’t long before it became obvious that was something much easier said than done. Soon, officials started making public requests of their citizens to “do their part” by sacrificing their everyday comforts and quality of life, like taking shorter showers – as though that would remedy the fact that industrial representatives were already sounding the alarm about rationing and manufacturing shortages.

Next, Western officials started backpedalling on their pledges to eradicate those forms of energy they had previously considered non-green. It was barely a few months earlier that Germany was chastising France for persisting with nuclear energy. Now, Berlin may potentially be joining Paris in turning back to it as a source, all while it also fires the old coal plants back up. Western Europeans had initially figured that they could at least maybe rely on hydroelectric energy from Norway, but the dry summer heat now threatens that, too, as Oslo considers cuts to its exports. And even liquified natural gas from Britain may not be exportable to the EU, since toxic and even radioactive contaminantshave recently been found in the supply originally sourced from countries like the US and Qatar.

The first flickers of real trouble are already evident – well ahead of the winter heating boom. The British consulting firm, Cornwall Insights, is warning of possible planned blackouts and empty shelves in Britain. Average household energy costs in the UK have reached £4,000 ($4,860) per year and are estimated to go even higher. The Bank of England is warning of a recession amid inflation which, in Germany, has just hit the highest level since reunification in 1990. Countries like Spain and Italy are imposing limits on heating and air conditioning in both public and commercial buildings. The EU’s imposition of a 15% energy cut across all member states has just come into effect, providing yet another pretext to reduce services to taxpayers. The mayor of the French town of Cabriès used it as an excuse to close the local swimming pool amid the record summer heat, citing a choice between the cost of feeding school kids increasingly pricy organic food in the cafeteria… or keeping the facility open.

And whose fault is all this? It should seem obvious, no? Western officials cut themselves off from their own energy source in order to play geopolitics by pulling Ukraine into their orbit – but the blame is squarely on Russia. That’s what they said and that’s what they’re doubling down on. Britain’s Daily Mail refers in a graphic to Putin cutting the gas supply. “Putin’s new gas squeeze condemns Europe to recession and a hard winter of rationing,” according to a CNBC headline. US President Joe Biden has framed it as “Putin’s tax on both food and gas.”Yet these officials did it to themselves – and to their citizens – “for Ukraine.”

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“US attempts to divide the energy markets into ‘good’ and ‘bad’ leads to destabilization, rising fuel prices and inflation..”

Russia Names Main Victim Of US Energy ‘Victory’ (RT)

Europe’s current woes with natural gas supplies are due to US pressure to block the Nord Stream 2 pipeline from coming online, Russian ambassador in Washington Anatoly Antonov said in a TV interview on Wednesday. With this, he said, the US won a victory not so much over Russia, but over European industry, which now has to rely on far more expensive American “molecules of freedom.” “No matter how much Washington tries to present Russia as an unreliable supplier, this is not true,” Antonov told Russia-24 in an interview that aired Wednesday evening. “The problems of our buyers began solely as a result of sanctions and restrictions imposed or inspired by the US,” the ambassador added. “We are ready to sell to everyone who needs inexpensive and high-quality resources.”

He cited the example of Nord Stream 2, the pipeline under the Baltic Sea that was supposed to deliver natural gas from Russia to Germany. It was completed last year but Berlin halted its certification in February – prior to the escalation of hostilities in Ukraine – and refused to make it operational despite appeals from German industry and local officials to do so. “The pipeline was ready to launch and could solve almost all the supply problems that arose with [Nord Stream 1] due to the sanctions confusion,” Antonov said. “The only thing missing is political will, the EU states just need to press the button and the pipeline will start working. But in the EU capitals they gave in to persistent pressure from the White House. As a result, a bet was made on expensive LNG.”

Liquefied natural gas is exported by the US in quantities nowhere near sufficient for the European market. Antonov made a pointed reference to the US Department of Energy calling it “molecules of freedom” back in 2019. Nord Stream 2 was a victory for Washington, which “struck a massive blow not so much against Russia, but against European competitiveness,” Antonov said. Addressing the reports that the US and its allies are trying to impose a price cap on Russian oil and gas exports, Antonov pointed out that such attempts would backfire, as there would be a realignment of commodity markets “not in favor of Western countries.” “US attempts to divide the energy markets into ‘good’ and ‘bad’ leads to destabilization, rising fuel prices and inflation,” Antonov said.

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Google translate from Dutch. Don’t think this guy buys his own groceries.

Government Must Quickly Start Repairing Purchasing Power – Professor (AD)

The passive attitude of the cabinet to protect the purchasing power of citizens is incomprehensible, says Tilburg economics professor Harald Benink. “A lot was possible quickly during the corona pandemic, now it is going very slowly.” High inflation, especially the high prices for energy and food, will become a huge problem, Benink predicts. “It is unprecedented what is happening with purchasing power. Energy bills that go from 2000 euros to 6000 euros per year. New families are confronted with this every day. And then the groceries are also 10 to 20 percent more expensive,” says Benink. High inflation threatens to put millions of households in financial trouble. And that will lead to more problems, Benink fears. “There will be a great demand for debt relief. But the municipalities do not have the capacity to help all those people at all.”

Benink foresees major economic damage if nothing is done to repair purchasing power. Sooner or later people will have to cut their spending. An economic contraction of more than 4 percent is then possible. And it’s not just about low-income people, middle-income people are also affected by the declining purchasing power.” Added to this is the consequential damage of problematic debts. People get stressed by money problems and that leads to illness, failure and reduced productivity. According to Benink, the government is probably so passive because they underestimated the increase in energy prices. “It was immediately clear during the corona pandemic that it was a major problem. A package of tens of billions of aid was quickly rigged. Now it is less than 10 billion euros.”

While it is the government’s turn, the professor believes. “It is a classic government function to protect people against uninsurable risks. And that’s inflation. You cannot get vaccinated against that. It’s a tsunami that’s hitting the people.” Benink thinks the cabinet will have to come up with a mix of measures to repair purchasing power. Targeted support for lower and middle incomes. I am thinking of the proposal from the Eneco director who wants an income-related energy discount. But it will also be possible to take generic measures, such as a further reduction in VAT or lower income tax.” Money is not the problem. “For example, if we spend 8 billion extra, the government debt will increase by one percentage point. We can have that easily. Doing nothing costs a lot more.”

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Ha! Also Google translate from Dutch. The Central bank plays with fire. Not a matter for a central bank. The government should talk to Russia.

Central Bank Warns Gov’t: Be Cautious With Purchasing Power Repairs (NOS)

The government is under great pressure to do something about sky-high inflation and high energy bills and is considering measures to compensate for rising prices and save purchasing power. However, the Dutch Central Bank (DNB) warns the cabinet against excessively generous financial support measures, because this could be counterproductive and actually fuel inflation. In NRC, DNB director Olaf Sleijpen argues for restraint in compensating companies and households for the increased prices. It is true that companies and households were kept afloat during the corona crisis in 2020 and 2021 with aid measures costing billions of euros, but the current price crisis works differently. “Large-scale support is now unwise and even counterproductive”, says Sleijpen. “During the corona crisis, we benefited from broad financial support – and therefore a decisive role for the government. Now we are not. As difficult as that message is, we can’t get around it.”

The cause of the high inflation is not in demand but in supply, because there is a scarcity and shortage of products and energy. Financial support does not remedy scarcity, but it does stimulate demand and thus fuel prices. “The ECB is trying to slow down demand with its interest rate policy. If the government presses the accelerator at the same time, it does not help to reach the destination (lower inflation),” Sleijpen told the newspaper. On the other hand, DNB shares the concerns about the major economic and social consequences of the rising prices of energy and groceries. Payment problems are looming for low-income households. “It goes without saying that the government will at least address the worst needs, and really focus on the hardest hit households.”

However, generic measures, such as lower energy taxes and fuel taxes, mainly benefit the higher incomes who do not need them. Additional income support measures should also not lead to a larger budget deficit. “Financing income compensation with a higher government debt means that the bill is passed on to the next generations,” says Sleijpen. The idea of asking employers to raise employees’ wages to keep up with rising inflation has raised eyebrows at DNB. It must be “an appropriate wage increase”. “We do not benefit from the full effect of inflation on wages”. There is as yet no sign of the feared wage-price spiral, DNB notes. and so there is room for stronger wage growth for the time being.

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Saw a pic of this on Twitter. Went looking on the Guardian frontpage, nothing. Their UK page: nada. Went through Google search in the end. So they finally publish something useful, and then try to hide it. But it’s not about the Green Party, or even the UK: we will see this discussion in many European countries.

UK Green Party Calls For Nationalisation Of Big Five Energy Firms (G.)

The Greens have called for the permanent nationalisation of the main energy supply companies and for domestic fuel bills to be reduced to the level of last autumn, describing this as a solution to the failed experiment with a market-based energy system. In a proposal that goes well beyond Labour’s idea for a freeze on energy bills for at least six months, the Greens said nationalising the main five energy firms was a necessary part of a plan sufficiently ambitious “to avoid a catastrophe this winter”. The scheme would be based on one proposed by the TUC last month. This was based on a cost of about £2.85bn to nationalise the big five supply firms – British Gas, E.ON, EDF, Scottish Power and Ovo. As a comparison, the government spent £2.2bn bailing out another firm, Bulb.

The Green plan would also involve the energy price cap – the maximum households can pay – being put back to the level of last autumn, before this April’s increase of nearly £700 a year for the average household. Putting this in place throughout the autumn and winter would cost about £37bn, the party said, compared with the £29bn estimated cost of Labour’s proposal to keep the cap at its current level. The cost would be paid for in part by tightening up the government’s windfall tax on oil and gas firms’ extra profits from higher global prices, and the party also proposes higher taxes for very wealthy people. Carla Denyer, a co-leader of the Greens alongside Adrian Ramsay, said the party would also aim to create more energy efficiency by introducing differential tariffs under which households that use a lot of power face proportionally rising prices, with exceptions for people with disabilities or chronic health conditions.

The party is already committed to a mass programme of home insulation to improve energy efficiency. “This experiment with an energy supply market has failed,” Denyer said. “Only the government can intervene at the scale required to avoid a catastrophe this winter.” She said there was “nationwide anxiety about the prospect of unpayable energy bills”, adding: “Other parties have only offered to fix energy prices at current levels, but we know these are already unaffordable. We would return energy prices to an affordable level.” s

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I sense a link with Melania’s underwear.

Audio Tapes In Bill Clinton’s Sock Drawer And Mar-a-Lago Search Dispute (JTN)

When it comes to the National Archives, history has a funny way of repeating itself. And legal experts say a decade-old case over audio tapes that Bill Clinton once kept in his sock drawer may have significant impact over the FBI search of Melania Trump’s closet and Donald Trump’s personal office.= The case in question is titled Judicial Watch v. National Archives and Records Administration and it involved an effort by the conservative watchdog to compel the Archives to forcibly seize hours of audio recordings that Clinton made during his presidency with historian Taylor Branch. For pop culture, the case is most memorable for the revelation that the 42nd president for a time stored the audio tapes in his sock drawer at the White House. The tapes became the focal point of a 2009 book that Branch wrote.

U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson in Washington D.C. ultimately rejected Judicial Watch’s suit by concluding there was no provision in the Presidential Records Act to force the National Archives to seize records from a former president. But Jackson’s ruling — along with the Justice Department’s arguments that preceded it — made some other sweeping declarations that have more direct relevance to the FBI’s decision to seize handwritten notes and files Trump took with him to Mar-a-Lago. The most relevant is that a president’s discretion on what are personal vs. official records is far-reaching and solely his, as is his ability to declassify or destroy records at will.

“Under the statutory scheme established by the PRA, the decision to segregate personal materials from Presidential records is made by the President, during the President’s term and in his sole discretion,” Jackson wrote in her March 2012 decision, which was never appealed. “Since the President is completely entrusted with the management and even the disposal of Presidential records during his time in office, it would be difficult for this Court to conclude that Congress intended that he would have less authority to do what he pleases with what he considers to be his personal records,” she added.

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FBI cover-up.

FBI Sought Documents Trump Hoarded for Years, Including about Russiagate (NW)

The FBI raid on Mar-a-Lago last Monday was specifically intended to recover Donald Trump’s personal “stash” of hidden documents, two high-level U.S. intelligence officials tell Newsweek. To justify the unprecedented raid on a former president’s residence and protect the source who revealed the existence of Trump’s private hoard, agents went into Trump’s residence on the pretext that they were seeking all government documents, says one official who has been involved in the investigation. But the true target was this private stash, which Justice Department officials feared Donald Trump might weaponize. “They collected everything that rightfully belonged to the U.S. government but the true target was these documents that Trump had been collecting since early in his administration,” says the source, who was granted anonymity to discuss sensitive issues.

The sought-after documents deal with a variety of intelligence matters of interest to the former president, the officials suggest—including material that Trump apparently thought would exonerate him of any claims of Russian collusion in 2016 or any other election-related charges. When Trump left the White House in January 2021, many of the normal processes of transition were not followed, especially because the president would not admit that he had lost the election or that he would be leaving office. As a result, we now know, some 42 boxes of documents were shipped to Mar-a-Lago by mistake: officials papers under U.S. law, which the National Archives is supposed to take custody of and catalog.

Over the past 18 months, the Trump camp and the Archives were engaged in a back-and-forth which resulted in the return of 15 boxes (and some additional documents). As late as June 3, when officials from the FBI and Justice visited Mar-a-Lago to serve a Grand Jury subpoena for specific documents, these negotiations were largely cordial. But in the course of its investigation, the FBI and Justice became aware of Trump’s private collection. As Newsweek previously reported, a confidential human source revealed that the former president wasn’t planning to divulge that he had possession of some of his own documents and that he did not intend to return them.

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Disband. First fire Walensky.

CDC Admits To Botched Covid-19 Responses (RT)

The CDC has acknowledged flaws in its response to the Covid-19 pandemic and announced plans to restructure the agency to rehabilitate its public image and better respond to future public health crises. “For 75 years, CDC and public health have been preparing for COVID-19, and in our big moment, our performance did not reliably meet expectations,” CDC director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said on Wednesday. “As a long-time admirer of this agency and a champion for public health, I want us all to do better.” The overhaul announcement follows an internal review that found the CDC’s “rigid, compartmentalized bureaucracy” undermined its response to Covid-19 and slowed its data analysis and releases of public advisories. When pandemic guidance was offered, it was often “confusing and overwhelming,” the review found.

The US leads the world in Covid-19 cases and deaths, by far, and the CDC has been criticized for confusing messaging and slow response times. The agency also held back much of the data it collected, in some cases because it feared the information could be “misinterpreted.” For instance, it withheld dataon Covid-19 infections among fully vaccinated Americans and the efficacy of vaccine booster shots for 18- to 49-year-olds. “Our public health infrastructure in the country was not up to the task of handling this pandemic,” Walensky told CBS News on Wednesday. She added, “We learned some hard lessons over the last three years, and as part of that, it’s my responsibility, it’s the agency’s responsibility, to learn from those lessons and do better.”

The CDC also has drawn criticism for its handling of the monkeypox outbreak. The reorganization plan, which will require approval from higher-ups in President Joe Biden’s administration, aims to get information to the public more quickly and speak about health issues in plain English, rather than scientific jargon. Walensky also plans to make the CDC more streamlined, with fewer reporting layers, and to develop a nimbler workforce that is prepared to respond to crises. “We need to have special forces, if you will, to deploy during pandemic times,” she said. Plans also call for creating a new office to promote “equity in health care,” though Walensky didn’t clarify how that would improve pandemic response.

Brilliant Sagan

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Britain’s railways

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Mark Morris: My family owned an iconic restaurant, Bens Deli, in Montreal for 100 years. This is Leonard Cohen entering its doors in 1965. What a beautiful picture and legacy.

 

 

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in virustime with Paypal, Bitcoin and Patreon.

 

 

 

Aug 162022
 
 August 16, 2022  Posted by at 9:00 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , ,  54 Responses »


Piet Mondriaan Study for Blue Apple Tree Series 1908

 

Ukraine Failed To Mount Counteroffensive – Macgregor (RT)
‘Ukraine Is Bankrupt’ – Moscow (RT)
Ukraine To Boost Military Spending (RT)
EU ‘Blatantly Lying’ About Threat To Zaporozhye Nuclear Plant – Moscow (RT)
Kiev Mayor Klitschko Claims Zelensky’s Government Threatened His Citizenship (RT)
German Officials Warn Of “Extremists” Fueling “Mass Protests And Riots” (ZH)
A Different Sort of Warrant (Kunstler)
DOJ Admits It Took Trump’s Passports, Offers To Return Them (JTN)
Garland, Wray Must Be Impeached for Unconscionable Trump Raid (NW)
Jim Jordan Says 14 FBI Whistleblowers Have Come Forward (WE)
Too Little, Too Late: Disband The CDC Now (NYP)
CBS Pushes Study Blaming Climate Change For Rising Childhood Obesity Rates (NYP)
How Your Carbon Footprint And Your Carbon Wallet Are Really Going To Work (TI)
Judge Rules Twitter Must Turn Over Hidden Documents to Elon Musk (TP)
CIA, Pompeo Sued For Spying On Attorneys, Journalists Who Met With Assange (D.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chitins

 

 

 

 

Coast guy

 

 

People tend to think things have always been as they are

 

 

 

 

“He went on to predict that the Russian military would seize the key port city of Odessa, making Ukraine a “landlocked country.”

Ukraine Failed To Mount Counteroffensive – Macgregor (RT)

The Ukrainian military has not been able to pull off its promised counteroffensive, and Russian forces are now likely to take over the whole of Ukraine’s Black Sea coast, Colonel Douglas Macgregor, a former adviser to the secretary of defense in the Trump administration, has said. Appearing on a livestream hosted by former US judge and columnist Andrew Napolitano last Tuesday, Macgregor dismissed as “utterly nonsensical” reports in some US media outlets that the Russian military has lost some 80,000 personnel in Ukraine so far. According to the decorated Gulf War veteran, “more accurate numbers are probably thirteen to fifteen thousand dead on the Russian side,” with Ukrainian forces having lost “sixty to eighty thousand.”

Commenting on these reports in late July, Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov described the alleged Russian casualty figures as “fake.” He also lamented that even established media outlets are publishing misleading reports these days. The last time Russia’s Defense Ministry provided an update on the number of casualties was in late March, at which time the official death toll had reached 1,351, with 3,825 service members injured. When asked to comment on the current state of affairs on the frontline, the former Pentagon official said that the majority of Russian personnel had been given rest, “refitted, reorganized,” to renew the offensive in August. Macgregor claimed that the first signs of that happening were already evident, “particularly down in the south.”

He went on to predict that the Russian military would seize the key port city of Odessa, making Ukraine a “landlocked country.” “Ukrainians have been unable to put together any sort of counteroffensive. So, I don’t see much evidence that the Ukrainians can stop this,” the former Pentagon adviser claimed. Moreover, Macgregor said that the activities of Russian forces south of Kharkov in the east of Ukraine seemed to him like preliminary “shaping operations” meant to pave the way for a major offensive later on. He concluded that “first comes the operation in the south and then subsequently up in Kharkov,” pointing out once more that the Ukrainian army does not appear to be able to stop either one.

Macgregor added that he expected these offensives to be over by the “end of August-beginning of September.” Last month, a number of top Ukrainian officials suggested that the country’s military would launch a counteroffensive in the south of the country in August to retake the city of Kherson. However, according to Moscow, it is the Russian military along with the forces of the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics that have recently made advances and taken territory.

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EU promised €9 billion in May, paid €1 billion so far. Ukraine ‘needs’ €9 billion every month.

‘Ukraine Is Bankrupt’ – Moscow (RT)

Ukraine has lost its financial independence as it cannot meet its obligations to its citizens without Western help, Russian State Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin wrote on Monday. Taking to Telegram, Volodin claimed that “collected taxes form only 40% of the country’s budget,” more than 60% of which covers military spending. Ukraine’s monthly deficit amounts to $5 billion, Volodin reminded. “Ukraine is bankrupt,” he said. The same numbers were reported on Friday by the Wall Street Journal. In the speaker’s opinion, “without the help of Washington and Brussels, Kiev can no longer fulfill its obligations to citizens.” “Ukraine has lost its financial independence,” Volodin concluded.

On Monday, the Ukrainian government introduced draft legislation to abolish preferential taxation on fuel. An explanatory note on the Rada’s website says that “there is a significant shortage of funds for financing the road industry.” The legislation is poised to create “during the period of martial law” conditions “for the proper functioning of the economy” and increased budget revenue through excise duties. In a recent interview with RBC Ukraine, Finance Minister Sergey Marchenko said that next year’s budget will be “extremely tight” due to “war conditions.” “There will be no expenses that will not be reviewed,” he said. According to Oleg Ustenko, a presidential adviser on economic issues, Ukraine’s state budget deficit is expected to reach $50 billion by the end of the year.

That is about 30-35% of the country’s GDP, he said in a TV interview last month, adding that “this is a problem of war.” Kiev says it needs $5 billion a month in assistance from Western backers. However, Ustenko, quoted by the Financial Times, said in July they would need an extra $4bn a month over the next three months to cover the cost of emergency accommodation and housing repairs for millions of people, and to fund a basic minimum income for those ones who had lost their jobs. The grants and loans pledged to Ukraine by the West have been arriving much slower than expected. So far, only €1 billion out of a €9 billion ($9.3 billion) long-term loan package proposed by the European Commission in May, has arrived. Since February, the EU has provided €2.2 billion.

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What you do when you’re bankrupt.

Ukraine To Boost Military Spending (RT)

The Ukrainian parliament approved on Monday a boost to defense spending amid the ongoing military conflict with Russia. According to the bill passed by the Rada, the country’s parliament, the government will be authorized to raise an additional 270 billion hryvnias ($7.3 billion) through domestic borrowing. This will allow an extra 241 billion hryvnias ($6.5 billion) to be allocated to the Defense Ministry and for more funds to be provided to the police, security and intelligence services. The move comes after the Wall Street Journal reported that a shortage of funds risks becoming “Ukraine’s Achilles’s heel” in the conflict.


“We have to worry about winning the war. It is better to risk high inflation than not to pay soldiers’ salaries,” Finance Minister Sergey Marchenko told the WSJ last week about the National Bank of Ukraine’s strategy of printing more money. Marchenko told news agency RBC Ukraine on Monday that Kiev hopes to receive $12-16 billion from foreign lenders by the end of 2022. The exact sum will depend on negotiations with foreign partners, he said.

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“biased informational stuffing”

Kiev knows the first thing the IAEA would find is proof that it was not the Russians who shelled the plant.

EU ‘Blatantly Lying’ About Threat To Zaporozhye Nuclear Plant – Moscow (RT)

Accusations that Moscow is jeopardizing the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant (ZNPP) contradict the facts and allow Kiev to undermine the International Atomic Energy Agency’s efforts to inspect the facility, Russia’s Foreign Ministry said on Monday. Russia’s response comes after the EU released a statement on Sunday condemning the “unprovoked invasion of Ukraine” and accusing the Russian military of attacking the ZNPP and preventing nuclear and radiation safety from being maintained at the facility. “Western countries are once again descending to outright lies, arguing that the threats to the ZNPP are created by Russia,” said Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova in a statement published on the ministry’s website.

“Obviously, this contradicts the facts that we have repeatedly cited, including within the walls of the Security Council. It is undeniable that the attacks on the station and Energodar are carried out by Ukrainian armed groups acting on orders from Kiev.” Zakharova went on to suggest that the EU’s statement was marked by “biased informational stuffing” and full of “blatant Russophobia and distorted facts.” She noted that the authors of the text were obsessed with the so-called “Russian threat” and were using it to cover up their own foreign policy failures by putting “Russophobic foreign policy views above objectivity and the tasks of nonproliferation and nuclear security.” The spokeswoman also pointed out that such statements were being used by EU politicians to score “imaginary political points” while giving Kiev the go-ahead to create obstacles for an IAEA inspection of the plant.

“We strongly urge Washington, Brussels and other capitals, primarily European ones, to stop the irresponsible games and intrigues around the ZNPP and immediately influence the Kyiv authorities to force them to stop shelling the plant and its adjacent territories,” Zakharova stated, adding that Moscow is in close cooperation with the IAEA and will do everything necessary to provide its specialists with access to the power plant.

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Zelensky feels 10 feet tall.

Kiev Mayor Klitschko Claims Zelensky’s Government Threatened His Citizenship (RT)

The government of Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky made a veiled threat to strip the citizenship of Kiev Mayor Vitaly Klitschko, the head of the Ukrainian capital claimed in an interview published on Monday. “I had a conversation with an innuendo: ‘Since you are so proactive, we could look into your German citizenship’. I said: ‘I’d be very surprised if somebody showed me a German passport in my name and took it away,’” he said, as cited by the website Babel. The exchange allegedly happened after Klitschko signed a public call for Zelensky to reverse his decision to revoke the Ukrainian citizenship of Ukrainian official Gennady Korban, which he ordered last month. Korban, a longtime close ally of Dnepr Mayor Boris Filatov, was among several Ukrainians whose citizenship was taken away by Zelensky.

He was on a foreign trip when the move was made. Upon attempting to return to Ukraine he found himself at an impasse when the border guards would not let him cross back into his home country. Over a hundred Ukrainian public figures supported the open letter to Zelensky, which Filatov published on Facebook in late July. Klitschko declined to reveal who exactly put pressure on him, but said he supported reinstating Korban’s citizenship on principle rather than as a political favor to Filatov. “Everything must happen under universal principles, not selectively,” he explained. “In this case this is how it looks: we’ll take this one’s [citizenship] and let others keep theirs, so that they are more pliable, realizing that we can take theirs too.”

Ukraine disallows dual citizenship. Under the law, Ukrainians who also hold foreign passports are treated as regular citizens but are banned from holding public office. The president may revoke the citizenship of a Ukrainian who takes another passport. In practice, however, this principle is often ignored. For instance, billionaire Igor Kolomoysky, one of the people targeted by Zelensky’s July order, had served as a governor in Ukraine despite holding the citizenship of Cyprus and Israel at the time. The fact was widely known in Ukraine, and Kolomoysky even joked that it was OK, since the law bans dual citizenship, not triple citizenship. In the interview, Klitschko provided assurance that Ukrainian citizenship is the only one he has. The official was a world-renowned boxer before going into politics and spent much of his athletic career in Germany.

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Farmers=Extremists.

German Officials Warn Of “Extremists” Fueling “Mass Protests And Riots” (ZH)

As queries for “firewood” have exploded on Google in Germany, and Deutsche Bank predicting that “wood will be used for heating purposes where possible,” German officials are now warning of extreme energy rationing measures, along with the potential for “extremists” to fuel national unrest over the deteriorating situation. For starters, German Economy Minister and Vice Chancellor Robert Habeck – who previously called on residents to cut back on heating, visits to the sauna, and showers – announced on Friday that public buildings across the country won’t be allowed to set heating above 19 degrees Celsius (66.2F) this fall. Exceptions will be made for hospitals and ‘social facilities.’

[..] Meanwhile, German officials are preparing for civil unrest. In an interview with ZDF, Stephan Kramer – who heads the domestic intelligence service in the German state of Thuringia – warned that ‘legitimate’ protests over the energy crisis could be ‘hijacked by extremists’ (and definitely not just enraged average citizens). Kramer said that officials were bracing for protests over “gas shortages, energy problems, supply difficulties, possible recession, unemployment, but also the growing poverty right up to the middle class,” adding that “extremists” which include “lateral thinkers” who rallied against pandemic lockdowns, and ‘right-wing activists’ who have been stirring the post over social media, could be at the heart of them.

“We’re likely to be confronted with mass protests and riots,” he continued. “We’re dealing with a highly emotionalized, aggressive, future-pessimistic mood in society, whose trust in the state, its institutions and political actors is fraught with massive doubts.” “This highly emotional and explosive mood could easily escalate,” the security chief continued, adding that the Covid-19 clashes would “probably feel more like a children’s birthday party” by comparison. Kramer offers a warning to would-be participants: “think carefully about which protests and demonstrations you join, or better stay away from them altogether, so as not to support the enemies of democracy.”

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“..the country is now viciously coming apart..“

A Different Sort of Warrant (Kunstler)

Over the weekend, independent journalist Paul Sperry reported that many of the same FBI officers involved in the Mar-a-Lago raid happen to be subjects of Special Counsel John Durham’s investigation into the origins of RussiaGate. Have some of them already been hauled into grand juries? We don’t know. But, with the Mar-a-Lago caper, it looks like the law enforcement apparatus of the federal government is seeking to suppress evidence of its own long-running criminal enterprise. The parallel purpose of the raid was to find — or perhaps plant — documents that might be used in a scheme to disqualify Mr. Trump from running for office again. The January 6th show-trial in Congress has failed to galvanize the country’s attention, and may have foundered in its attempt to find grounds for a criminal referral against the former president that would take him off the playing field. So, now this.

Momentous legal quarrels that arise out of the Mar-a-Lago raid may evolve into a constitutional crisis that the captive news media can use as a smokescreen to divert the public’s attention from any balloting shenanigans going into the November election. At least it will shove any other issues off-stage in the run-up to the midterm. Is it a miscalculation? The choice of going to federal magistrate Bruce Reinhart for the Mar-a-Lago warrant sure looks crude and desperate. Only weeks ago, he was presiding over the Trump v Clinton lawsuit. How did that even happen, given Mr. Reinhart’s role defending Jeffrey Epstein’s associates — many of them Clinton-connected — in the 2007 sex-trafficking case?

And only after the spectacularly weird act of switching sides from the federal prosecution team to Epstein’s defense team. Not to mention Mr. Reinhart’s record of public statements denouncing Mr. Trump. There are twenty-five other magistrates who rotate their duties in the Southern District of Florida, why pick him? It all shapes up as a systematic effort to obstruct justice by the US Department of Justice. They’ve been doing it consistently since 2016 in all matters pertaining to Mr. Trump, and it is a big reason that the country is now viciously coming apart.

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“DOJ admission it over-collected evidence in Trump raid creates new legal drama..”

DOJ Admits It Took Trump’s Passports, Offers To Return Them (JTN)

Three passports, Privileged documents. A file on a presidential pardon. As evidence surfaces about what FBI agents seized during the raid of former President Donald Trump’s estate in Mar-O-Lago, new questions about the real focus of the investigation and new avenues for legal challenges are bubbling to the surface. The Justice Department informed Trump’s team Monday that agents gathered the former president’s passports and are obligated to return them, and that officials are also reviewing seized materials that may be covered by various privileges, multiple sources told Just the News. DOJ has designated a process for separating materials that could be covered by executive privilege or attorney client privilege and hopes to return such memos to Trump within a couple of weeks, the sources said.

“Occasionally a warrant collection can grab things outside the scope authorized by the court and the department is now following a procedure we would for any person affected this way,” one official said Monday night. Kevin Brock, who served as FBI assistant director for intelligence under former Director Robert Mueller, said the new revelations raise legitimate questions about over-collection of evidence that could lead to significant legal challenges. Trump lawyers are weighing whether to ask a federal court to name a special master to review sensitive documents and protect the president’s 4th amendment, executive and attorney-client privileges. “Trump’s attorneys could have a runway to argue the scope of the search is overly broad,” Brock told Just the News.

“Search warrants normally require a level of specificity that seems to be missing in this warrant. Specificity is important in order to protect 4th Amendment rights from exuberant government overreach designed to find whatever they can.” Brock said he was particularly troubled FBI agents felt comfortable seizing a record of Trump’s pardon of longtime friend Roger Stone, which the bureau disclosed in court documents. He said it suggested the raid may have something more to do with the Jan. 6 Capitol riot probe, where Stone has been a figure of interest, than an investigation into classified records. “The president’s authority to grant pardon and clemency is clear but what isn’t clear is why the retention of a clemency order would be considered illegal,” Brock said.

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From Newsweek no less…

Garland, Wray Must Be Impeached for Unconscionable Trump Raid (NW)

For over a year, we’ve heard Democrats wailing about existential threats to “democracy!” Curiously, this has happened while these same Democrats in Congress have worked hand-in-glove with their fellow Democrats in the Justice Department to disregard all norms to hunt down and attempt to destroy President Joe Biden’s chief political rival, former President Donald Trump, as well as Trump’s top aides and even his political supporters. Last Monday, the Biden Justice Department crossed a red line by ordering an unprecedented, unnecessary, and unlawful FBI raid of Trump’s home and offices in Mar-a-Lago. The purported purpose of the highly controversial home raid with a brigade of 30 FBI agents—a raid Attorney General Merrick Garland admitted he personally ordered after his aides initially denied it—is related to 15 to 25 boxes of presidential records, some of which bureaucrats at the National Archives claim are classified and which Trump took to Mar-a-Lago when he left the White House over 18 months ago.

All presidents take mementos and other records when they leave office. They don’t pack their own boxes. The National Archives takes the position that almost everything is a “presidential record.” And the federal government, in general, over-classifies almost everything. Even if Trump took classified records, that isn’t a crime. The president has the inherent constitutional power to declassify any record he wants, in any manner he wants, regardless of any otherwise-pertinent statute or regulation that applies to everyone else. The president does not need to obtain Congress’ or a bureaucrat’s permission—or jump through their regulatory or statutory hoops—to declassify anything. The Supreme Court reaffirmed this in the 1988 case, Department of the Navy v. Egan :

“The President, after all, is the ‘Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States.’ U.S. Const., Art. II, § 2. His authority to classify and control access to information bearing on national security…flows primarily from this constitutional investment of power in the President, and exists quite apart from any explicit congressional grant.” Thus, if Trump left the White House with classified records, then those records are necessarily declassified by his very actions. He doesn’t need to label that decision for, or report that decision to, any bureaucrat who works for him. It is pretextual legal nonsense for the Biden Justice Department to pretend Trump broke any criminal statute. Indeed, it is noteworthy that Attorney General Garland apparently did not seek an opinion from the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel (OLC)—the de facto general counsel for the executive branch—before ordering this home raid of his boss’s chief political enemy. Perhaps Garland knew OLC wouldn’t give him the answer he wanted.

In 2012, former President Barack Obama secretly told the Russian president he’d have “more flexibility” to negotiate with Russia after the 2012 presidential election. To convey that message is to clearly transmit highly classified information. So why not an Espionage Act violation? Well, because Obama was the president—period. All former presidents also get a federally funded office, called the Office of the Former President. They get lawyers and other staff, security clearances, Secret Service protection, and secure facilities (SCIFs) for the maintenance of classified records. Even if Trump had classified records, then, they were protected and secure.

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The GOP needs to win the midterms first…

Jim Jordan Says 14 FBI Whistleblowers Have Come Forward (WE)

More than a dozen FBI whistleblowers have come forward to Republican investigators in Congress, according to Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH). The congressman, who is the ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee, told Fox News host Trey Gowdy the number has risen to 14 after the FBI raid at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort. During a conversation about alleged politicization at the Justice Department, along with former Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe, Jordan made the case that the public has “figured it out” when it comes to what he characterized as the Left generating a lie, the “Big Media” reporting the lie, Big Tech amplifying the lie, and then both piling on Republicans when they catch on and say something. He said there are agents in the bureau who have realized the same.


“Fourteen FBI agents have come to our office as whistleblowers, and they are good people,” Jordan said. “There are lots of good people in the FBI. It’s the top that is the problem. Some of these good agents are coming to us, telling us what is baloney, what’s going on — the political nature now of the Justice Department — God bless them for doing it — talking about the school board issue, about a whole host of issues.” This would appear to be quite a bump from a little more than two months ago, when Jordan told Fox News host Laura Ingraham that, in total, six FBI officials have approached the committee, two related to a controversy surrounding a school boards memo and four related to Jan. 6. At the time, in early June, Jordan sent a letter to FBI Director Christopher Wray warning that multiple former FBI officials were coming forward with information suggesting the bureau was “purging” employees with conservative viewpoints.

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“..And the CDC permits us to come within six feet of each other again. Finally! Husbands, tell your wives it’s on!”

Too Little, Too Late: Disband The CDC Now (NYP)

Dissolve the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Last week, the CDC released updated COVID-19 guidance. The agency now believes we should be taking an individual approach to mitigating our COVID risk. In layman’s terms, we are all Florida 2020 now. The new guidance suggests ending “test to stay” so kids exposed to someone with COVID-19 can remain in school. Of course, this was only related to known exposure. People are exposed to COVID all the time, but only children who were aware of that exposure were punished. Kids lost so much throughout the pandemic because of terrible, irrational CDC guidance like this. The fresh guidance also says people without symptoms no longer need to be routinely tested. And the CDC permits us to come within six feet of each other again. Finally! Husbands, tell your wives it’s on!

But most important, the agency has finally faced some truths about the vaccine that it should have long ago. “CDC’s COVID-19 prevention recommendations no longer differentiate based on a person’s vaccination status because breakthrough infections occur.” And it’s admitted that “persons who have had COVID-19 but are not vaccinated have some degree of protection against severe illness from their previous infection.” Cities across the country fired teachers, firefighters, health-care staffers, police officers, sanitation workers and so many others because they refused to get vaccinated. Many of these people had worked through the early days of the pandemic — and contracted COVID many times over — while we baked banana bread and patted ourselves on the back for ordering from Uber Eats. Now the CDC acknowledges this was the wrong thing to do. Whoopsie!

[..] But with COVID, its word became policy. In what should go down as one of the most disgusting moments in public health, the CDC allowed, with direction from the Biden White House, Randi Weingarten, American Federation of Teachers chief, to craft school-opening policies that forced classrooms across the country to remain closed in winter 2021. No one has been fired for this dereliction of duty. No one has even been openly chastised for allowing a special-interest group to control our health-care policy. This alone is why the CDC must go.

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“..scare Americans into accepting Government intervention–at any cost!!–against climate *apocalypse*“

CBS Pushes Study Blaming Climate Change For Rising Childhood Obesity Rates (NYP)

“CBS Mornings” pushed a recent study connecting climate change and hotter temperatures with childhood obesity rates in a ridiculed segment on Thursday. Co-host Nate Burleson introduced the study published in the journal “Temperature” that argued “climate change, specifically warmer temperatures is making our children more inactive and more obese.” Burleson said the study found that children were 30% less “aerobically fit” than their parents and claimed hotter temperatures were preventing kids from exercising outside. Although the segment focused primarily on climate change, Burleson acknowledged that technology was likely a factor in rising childhood obesity cases.

“Now listen, it has been a lot hotter, and the weather has been crazy, but I think it also has to do with technology, you know. It’s one thing not to go outside, but these kids don’t go outside because they can stay inside and be on their phones, play video games, and be social without having to go outside and be social,” Burleson said. Several Twitter users, however, attacked the segment for emphasizing “climate change” as a factor in childhood obesity without also recognizing coronavirus lockdowns. “Do you think it could be… nah, couldn’t be. Must be the climate change,” Deseret News contributing writer Bethany Mandel joked.

Hans Mahncke, co-host of “Truth Over News” on EpochTV, tweeted, “They made kids fat by shutting schools, playgrounds, parks and beaches. Predictably, they’re now blaming ‘climate change.’ If there aren’t severe penalties for the fraudsters who pushed lockdowns, it’ll happen again.” “Climate change? Ffs,” National Review journalist Claude Thompson wrote. Former congresswoman Nan Hayworth tweeted, “NO. NO. NO. Many factors contribute to children’s lack of fitness, but climate change is NOT one of them. This is propaganda that CBS, as with all ‘mainstream’ media, pushes to scare Americans into accepting Government intervention–at any cost!!–against climate *apocalypse*”

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“Mastercard and Doconomy Launch the Future of Sustainable Payments”

How Your Carbon Footprint And Your Carbon Wallet Are Really Going To Work (TI)

When most people think of carbon emissions and carbon footprints they think it only refers to travel, fuel, gas and electricity all under the guise of emissions. I hate to break it to you but it runs far deeper than that. Let me now introduce you to Doc Ono, a company you may never have heard of. Doconomy is a “credit card” endorsed by Klaus Schwab’s World Economic Forum. In May 2019 an article appeared on the WEF site called “This credit card has a carbon-emission spending limit” In the article it says “Swedish fintech company Doconomy has launched a new credit card that monitors the carbon footprint of its customers – and cuts off their spending when they hit their carbon max” Yikes, cuts off their spending. It continues:

“The DO card tracks the CO2 emissions linked to purchases to calculate the carbon impact of every transaction. The aim is to encourage people to actively reduce their carbon footprint and demonstrate the impact that small changes can have on the environment. The card uses the Aland Index as the basis on which it calculates the carbon footprint of each product purchased. Users can set a maximum value for their carbon spend and learn how to compensate for their carbon footprint by contributing towards schemes to reduce or remove greenhouse gas emissions” Now we are getting closer to the truth of how this is going to operate. It isn’t just travel, it will be for everything. In February 2019 Mastercard published an article called “Mastercard and Doconomy Launch the Future of Sustainable Payments” where they say “Doconomy and Mastercard announce their joint effort to combat climate change by enabling DO – a free and easy-to-use mobile banking service that lets users track, understand and reduce their CO2 footprints through carbon offsetting”

Isn’t it fascinating that they emphasise it will allow the users to track everything. It would never be used for nefarious purposes such as banks and governments tracking everything. Of course not.. [..] Here is what is probably going to happen. When you go out to a restaurant depending on what your “carbon footprint” has been, will determine what you can and cannot order off the menu. Sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it ? Depending on how many points you have left for that month will determine whether you are allowed to eat “proper food” or “lab food”. If you’ve been a bold boy or girl you’ll only be allowed to eat the lab grown plant-based food so you don’t surpass your carbon quota. If you try to order beef which apparently has high CO2 levels you won’t be allowed to.

This will also be the case when you go to supermarkets to do your weekly shop. Every item you buy will be assigned a CO2 number. It gets even more ridiculous though. Within the last month Eamonn Ryan who is a WEF member and leader of the Green Party in Ireland has advocated for the reduction in the numbers of Irish cattle. Instead we will import cattle from Brazil. I like to call this the work of the “Ruminati”. How do you think the carbon footprint of importing beef from Brazil would look like on a menu now. It would be off the charts. Do you see what they are trying to achieve and where this is going ? The whole thing sounds ridiculously Dystopian, doesn’t it ? That would never happen. It’s so 1984, I hear you shout. If you have been paying attention to the last 2.5 years then you will realise it’s not remotely far-fetched at all.

https://twitter.com/i/status/1559165376939937794

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“A buyer can also walk if there’s fraud, assuming the discovery of incorrect information has a so-called ‘material adverse effect.’”

Judge Rules Twitter Must Turn Over Hidden Documents to Elon Musk (TP)

A judge on Monday ruled that Twitter must turn over documents from a former executive that would show how many ‘fake accounts’ are on the platform. “Twitter needs to give Elon Musk documents from a former Twitter executive who Musk said was a key figure in calculating the amount of fake accounts on the platform, according to a Monday court order,” Reuters reported. “Bot and spam accounts on Twitter have become a central issue in the legal fight over whether Musk, who is Tesla Inc’s chief executive, must complete his $44 billion acquisition of the social media company,” the report noted. “Twitter was ordered to collect, review and produce documents from former General Manager of Consumer Product Kayvon Beykpour, according to the order from Chancellor Kathaleen McCormick of the Delaware Court of Chancery,” the report added.

Elon Musk announced in early June that he would abandon his $44 billion Twitter offer after the company failed to provide satisfactory information about fake ‘bot’ accounts. Twitter sued the Tesla CEO to force him to uphold the deal. In a letter to Twitter’s board, Musk’s lawyer Mike Ringler complained his client had sought data to determine how many “fake or spam” accounts are on the social media platform. “Twitter has failed or refused to provide this information. Sometimes Twitter has ignored Mr. Musk’s requests, sometimes it has rejected them for reasons that appear to be unjustified, and sometimes it has claimed to comply while giving Mr. Musk incomplete or unusable information,” the letter said. Musk could be on solid legal ground to pull out of the deal if Twitter had attempted to defraud him during the takeover process.

“A reverse breakup fee paid from a buyer to a target applies when there is an outside reason a deal can’t close, such as regulatory intermediation or third-party financing concerns. A buyer can also walk if there’s fraud, assuming the discovery of incorrect information has a so-called ‘material adverse effect.’ A market dip, like the current sell-off that has caused Twitter to lose more than $9 billion in market cap, wouldn’t count as a valid reason for Musk to cut loose — breakup fee or no breakup fee — according to a senior Mergers and Acquisitions lawyer familiar with the matter,” CNBC reported.

Read more …

“The United States Constitution shields American citizens from US government overreach..”

CIA, Pompeo Sued For Spying On Attorneys, Journalists Who Met With Assange (D.)

A group of journalists and lawyers, who visited WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange while he was living under political asylum in the Ecuadorian embassy, sued the CIA and former CIA director Mike Pompeo. They allege that the agency under Pompeo spied on them in violation of their privacy rights. Undercover Global S.L., a private security company in Spain, and the company’s director David Morales are also named as defendants. UC Global ramped up surveillance against Assange and shared audio and video footage from the embassy with “American intelligence.” “The United States Constitution shields American citizens from US government overreach even when the activities take place in a foreign embassy in a foreign country.

“Visitors who are lawyers, journalists and doctors frequently carry confidential information in their devices,” declared Richard Roth, who is the lead attorney representing the plaintiffs. “They had a reasonable expectation that the security guards at the Ecuadorian embassy in London would not be US government spies charged with delivering copies of their electronics to the CIA,” Roth added. Two of the plaintiffs are attorneys who have represented Assange—Margaret Rather Kunstler, a civil rights activist and human rights attorney, and Deborah Hrbek, a media lawyer. The other two plaintiffs are journalists Charles Glass and John Goetz, who worked for Der Spiegel when the German media organization first partnered with WikiLeaks to publish documents on the Afghanistan and Iraq wars.

[..] According to the complaint [PDF] filed in a US court in the Southern District of New York, Glass, Goetz, Hrbek, and Kunstler, like all visitors, were required to “surrender” their electronic devices to UC Global employees hired by Ecuador to provide security for the embassy. What they did not know is that UC Global “copied the information stored on the devices” and allegedly shared the information with the CIA. Pompeo allegedly authorized and approved the action. Security required plaintiffs to leave their devices with them, which contained “confidential and privileged information about their sources or clients. This information was copied and allegedly shared with the CIA. It is estimated that “well over 100 American citizens who visited Assange at the Ecuadorian embassy” had their privacy rights violated. This includes attorneys who were there to represent Assange, journalists who traveled to interview him, and even doctors who came to the embassy to assess and treat his deteriorating health.

Read more …

 

 

 

 

 

Chinese century??

 

 

 

$717 a month

 

 

 

 

(Part of) Monastiraki in the foreground, Acropolis in the back.

 

 

Friends

 

 

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in virustime with Paypal, Bitcoin and Patreon.

 

 

 

Aug 152022
 
 August 15, 2022  Posted by at 8:39 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  48 Responses »


Odilon Redon Street in Samois 1888

 

The Second Coming of the Heartland (Escobar)
Ukraine To Target Russian Soldiers At Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant (G.)
EU Ramps Up Exports To Russia (RT)
Sanctions Are ‘Wrong To The Core’ – Hungarian Parliament Leader (RT)
Gazprom Has Increased Gas Supply To Hungary (G.)
Ukraine To Legalize Guns Soon – Minister (RT)
US Fumes Over India’s Role In Transporting Banned Russian Oil – Reuters (RT)
A Deeper Dive Into the CDC Reversal (Tucker)
Trump And His Family Watched FBI Raid on CCTV (CB)
FBI Took Documents Protected By Attorney-Client Privilege From Mar-a-Lago (CB)
Rand Paul Calls To Repeal Espionage Act Following Mar-a-Lago Raid (JTN)
House GOP To Issue Scathing Report About Biden’s Afghanistan Withdrawal (CNN)
Atlantic Op-ed Claims Catholic Rosary Has Become ‘An Extremist Symbol’ (Fox)
South America’s ‘Lithium Fields’ And The Dark Side Of Our Electric Future (EN)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hoax

 

 

Schiff

 

 

 

 

Irish farmer

 

 

 

 

“This unelected gaggle of insufferable mediocrities – from von der Leyden and Borrell to that piece of Norwegian wood Stoltenberg..”

The Second Coming of the Heartland (Escobar)

[..] the inestimable Alastair Crooke has illustrated the death of Eurocentrism alluding to Lewis Carroll and Yeats: only through the looking glass we can see the full contours of the tawdry spectacle of narcissistic self-obsession and self-justification offered by “the worst”, still so “full of passionate intensity”, as depicted by Yeats. And yet, unlike Yeats, the best now do not “lack all conviction”. They may be few, ostracized by cancel culture, but they do see the “rough beast, its hour come out at last, slouching towards…” Brussels (not Jerusalem) “to be born”. This unelected gaggle of insufferable mediocrities – from von der Leyden and Borrell to that piece of Norwegian wood Stoltenberg – may dream they live in the pre-1914 era, when Europe was at the political center.

Yet now not only “the center cannot hold” (Yeats) but Eurocrat-infested Europe has been definitely engulfed by the maelstrom, an irrelevant political backwater seriously flirting with reversion to 12th century status. The physical aspects of the Fall – austerity, inflation, no hot showers, freezing to death to support neo-Nazis in Kiev – has been preceded, and no Christianized imagery need apply, by the fires of sulphur and brimstone of a Spiritual Fall. The transatlantic masters of those parrots posing as “elites” could never come up with any idea to sell to the Global South centered on harmony and much less “community”. What they sell, via their Unanimous Narrative, actually their take on “We Are the World”, is variations of “you will own nothing and be happy”. Worse: you will have to pay for it – dearly.

And you have no right to dream of any transcendence – irrespective if you’re a follower of Rumi, the Tao, shamanism or Prophet Muhammad. The most visible shock troops of this reductionist Western neo-nihilism – obscured by the fog of “equality”, “human rights” and “democracy” – are the thugs being swiftly denazified in Ukraine, sporting their tattoos and pentagrams. The Collective West Self-Justification Show staged to obliterate its ritualized suicide offers no hint of transcending sacrifice implied in a ceremonial seppuku. All they do is to wallow in the adamant refusal to admit they could be seriously mistaken. How would anyone dare to deride the set of “values” derived from the Enlightenment? If you don’t prostrate yourself in front of this glittering cultural altar, you’re just a barbarian set to be slandered, law-fared, canceled, persecuted, sanctioned and – HIMARS to the rescue – bombed.

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Nothing new.

Ukraine To Target Russian Soldiers At Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant (G.)

Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, has said his forces will target Russian soldiers who shoot at or from Europe’s largest nuclear power station, amid warnings that the Kremlin may falsely claim Kyiv has directly struck the critical site. Zelenskiy said anyone giving orders for attacks on the site or nearby towns and cities should face trial by an international court, as concern about the safety of the nuclear site remained high. “Every Russian soldier who either shoots at the plant, or shoots using the plant as cover, must understand that he becomes a special target for our intelligence agents, for our special services, for our army,” Zelenskiy said in a video address on Saturday night.


He called for new sanctions against Russia that would “necessarily block the Russian nuclear industry”, and he argued that “absolutely all officials of the terrorist state, as well as those who help them in this blackmail operation with the nuclear power plant, must be tried by an international court.” Russian troops captured the station – the biggest nuclear plant in Europe, responsible for up to 20% of Ukraine’s energy needs – early in the war. Two of its six reactors are currently operating and Ukraine has said Russia is trying to reconnect the power plant to occupied Crimea and shut off electricity supply to towns held by Kyiv.

German reporter

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But but sanctions?!

EU Ramps Up Exports To Russia (RT)

EU exports to Russia surged by 18% in June from the previous month, reaching €4.45 billion ($4.57 billion), foreign trade data from the statistics agency Eurostat shows. This was the second consecutive month that exports to Russia rose, following the April low of just €2.78 billion. However, the value of goods shipped to Russia remains well below the June 2021 figure of €7.21 billion, as some 28% of EU exports to Russia remain under Ukraine-related sanctions. In response to Russia’s military operation in Ukraine, Brussels banned the export to Russia from the EU of airplanes, bearings, dual-use technology, luxury goods, and other products. These restrictions delivered an instant blow to the bloc’s exports to Russia, one of its largest trading partners in previous years.

Nevertheless, industrial equipment retained its position as the largest EU export to Russia, with June having seen shipments worth €1.12 billion, up 21% from May. The supply of medicines also increased, growing by 6% to €791 million over the previous month and surpassing last year’s figures by 31.5%. Medicine is now the second-largest EU export to Russia. The bloc’s exports of perfumes and cosmetics, excluding luxury goods that exceed €300 per single item, rose in June by 38% to €108 million. Shipments of plastics and plastic products grew by 16% to €234 million, while deliveries of optical, measuring, control, medical devices and instruments and electrical equipment and components also jumped. However, exports in all of these categories remain well below last year’s levels.

Germany remains the largest EU exporter to Russia, with €1.16 billion worth of goods shipped in June, a 5.4% increase against May. Poland nearly doubled its shipments to Russia against April-May to €395 million, while exports from the Baltic states increased by 34% month-on-month, to €481 million. Due to sanctions, the export of aircraft and aircraft components from Europe to Russia, which approached €3 billion in 2021, has dropped to zero since April 2022. Deliveries of cars and auto parts fell by more than ten times in annual terms and amounted to only €62 million in June.

Russia stopped publishing trade statistics shortly after the operation in Ukraine began. However, according to a report from the Bank of Russia in late July, citing data from Russia’s trading partners, the country’s overall imports of goods and services fell 22% in the second quarter of the year from the same time in 2021. Moscow repeatedly said that it will be able to overcome the impact of sanctions on imports, and that measures will be taken to substitute any missing goods with ones produced at home or obtained from other sources, such as China, Turkey and India. In a draft of the directive on monetary policy published earlier this week, Russia’s central bank predicted that despite the political pressure, imports would gradually recover.

“The pace of this recovery will be determined by the emergence of new financing and insurance mechanisms, the construction of new logistics routes and the formation of new trade relations. The mechanism of parallel imports, launched at the end of March, will also contribute to the growth of imports,” the regulator stated, as cited by the news agency RBC.

Read more …

Hungary says it; the rest do it secretly.

Sanctions Are ‘Wrong To The Core’ – Hungarian Parliament Leader (RT)

Hungarian National Assembly Speaker Laszlo Kover has condemned the EU’s economic sanctions on Russia as “wrong to the core,”predicting economic devastation as a result. Kover, a long-time critic of the EU, added that Hungary’s success depends on cooperation with both East and West. Speaking in the Hungarian town of Bugac on Saturday, Kover used a Hungarian proverb to describe the EU’s decision to impose massive economic sanctions on Russia while still relying on its energy exports. “Brussels politicians swung their legs without a horse under them,” he told attendees of the Kurultaj festival, an annual event celebrating Eurasian and Turkic steppe-nomadic horse culture. Kover added that the sanctions – imposed in seven successive rounds since Russia launched its military operation in Ukraine in February – are “wrong to the core,” and will result in economic ruin for Europe.

Kover is a member of Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s Fidesz party, and Orban himself has expressed a similar view on Brussels’ sanctions policy. In a speech last month, Orban bluntly assessed that “the sanctions are not destabilizing Moscow” as intended. Instead, he remarked, “Europe is in trouble.” The EU, which depends on Russia for around 40% of its gas and a third of its oil, is facing soaring energy costs and record inflation, having imposed a partial ban on Russian oil and announced a phased reduction of Russian gas imports. With multiple EU states imposing power rationing and the situation expected to worsen as winter sets in, Hungary has managed to carve out an exemption from the oil embargo, and has been in talks with Moscow to increase its gas purchases from Russia.

This stance has made Hungary an outlier in the EU, as has Orban’s insistence that NATO’s policy of arming Ukraine against Russia is a lost cause. The Hungarian premier responded to critics earlier this month by stating that “Brussels is not our boss,” and that the “independent, sovereign Hungarian nation”would work to “prevent” EU policies that aren’t in its national interest. As an EU member, Hungary is nevertheless party to most of Brussels’ sanctions on Russia. Likewise as a NATO country, Hungary would be bound to side with the US-led alliance if it became involved in open war with Russia. In his speech on Saturday, Kover described Hungary’s history and geography as making the country a “bridge” between East and West. “When the East and the West confronted each other, it only brought decline,” he said. “But if they cooperated, it brought Hungary a chance to rise.”

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“It is the only EU member state to have categorically ruled out acting on a plan to cut gas consumption by 15%..”

Gazprom Has Increased Gas Supply To Hungary (G.)

Gazprom has ramped up flows to Hungary through the TurkStream pipeline that transports gas via Bulgaria and Serbia, a Hungarian foreign ministry official has said. The Russian state-owned company started delivering more gas than it was contractually obliged to on Friday, Menczer Tamás, an official in Hungary’s ministry of foreign affairs and trade, wrote in a Facebook post on Saturday. By the end of August, Gazprom would supply Hungary with an addition 2.6m cubic metres a day, said Menczer, a member of Viktor Orbán’s Fidesz party. TurkStream, which runs through the Black Sea, is called Balkan Stream in Bulgaria, where the pipeline enters EU territory. While Russia has stopped gas deliveries to Bulgaria, an EU member, Sofia continues to transit Russian gas to Serbia and Hungary.

Three weeks ago Hungary’s foreign minister, Péter Szijjártó, travelled to Moscow to discuss buying an additional 700m cubic metres of gas, becoming the only top official from an EU member state to visit Russia since late February, bar the Austrian chancellor, Karl Nehammer, who made a trip in April. Hungary, which is about 85% dependent on Russian gas, has consistently opposed the idea of any EU sanctions on Russian gas imports, and Orbán, the prime minister, has also lobbied hard to secure an exemption from EU sanctions on Russian crude oil imports. It is the only EU member state to have categorically ruled out acting on a plan to cut gas consumption by 15% from August this year until March 2023.

In Germany, which is also reliant on Russian gas imports, the economic ministry announced on Saturday night that the country needed to reduce its gas consumption by 20% to help the EU meet its 15% reduction target. As a first step, the government moved to lower the mandatory minimum temperature in offices in the private and public sector by one degree to 19C. The heating of private swimming pools, as well as lighting up buildings or monuments “for purely aesthetic purposes”, will be banned. Outdoor advertising signs are to be switched off from 10pm until 6am.

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They’re going to shoot each other.

Ukraine To Legalize Guns Soon – Minister (RT)

Ukraine will adopt a law legalizing firearms in the near future, amid the nation’s ongoing armed conflict with Russia, Internal Affairs Minister Denis Monastirsky told local media on Saturday. According to Monastirsky, the Ukrainian parliament may allow citizens to buy handguns and other weapons to protect their homes. While stating that he believes people should be able to do so, he said the Internal Affairs Ministry is against granting people the right to carry guns in public. “We are opposed to carrying weapons freely in public places, because we believe that the risks to public safety outweigh the benefits,” he stated, adding that the ministry has been working with Ukrainian MPs on the issue, and that a law could be adopted soon.

“[It] has been approved in the first reading and is now being prepared for the second one. I think that it would be submitted to the Parliament for consideration in the near future.” A bill on gun control that was approved by the Ukrainian parliament in late February, shortly before Moscow launched its military operation, allows citizens to buy and store at home short-barreled firearms, as well as using them at shooting ranges. In March, Monastirsky revealed that the Ukrainian authorities had distributed “tens of thousands” of assault rifles, usually reserved for the trained personnel, among civilians, in a move to turn the public into a resistance force against Russian troops.

At the time, Kiev also announced it would set free combat-experienced felons who agree to take up arms and fight against the Russian Army. According to media reports, on February 24 alone – the day Russia began the attack – the Kiev authorities handed out at least 10,000 automatic rifles among residents. In July, Viktor Andrusov, a former adviser to Monastirsky, announced that Ukrainians could gain the right to carry pistols for self-defense as early as next year. He also claimed, citing an unspecified poll, that 70% of Ukrainians support the move. Even before full-scale hostilities between Russia and Ukraine broke out, the number of unregistered firearms in Ukraine was estimated at between 3 and 5 million.

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“..that’s the way war works, it works in strange ways..”

US Fumes Over India’s Role In Transporting Banned Russian Oil – Reuters (RT)

Washington has approached New Delhi with queries about Russian oil products that were allegedly shipped to the US from India, Reuters reported on Saturday, citing Reserve Bank of India Deputy Governor Michael Patra. According to Patra, the US Treasury informed the country’s authorities that an Indian vessel allegedly picked up oil from a Russian tanker on the high seas and delivered it to a port in the state of Gujarat on the country’s west coast, where the oil was processed and then shipped to New York. “You know that there are sanctions against people who are buying Russian oil, and this was reported to us by the US Treasury… It turns out, an Indian ship met a Russian tanker in mid-seas, picked up oil in the mid-seas, came to a port in Gujarat, it was processed in that port and converted into a distillate which actually goes into making single-use plastic.


“The refined output was put back on that ship and it set sail without a destination. In the mid-seas it received the destination so it reached its course, went to New York,” Patra said at an event in Odisha celebrating 75 years of Indian independence. The official did not reveal the name of the ship in question, nor provide any other details on the matter, but said “that’s the way war works, it works in strange ways.” The US banned Russian oil and oil products from entering the country earlier this year, as part of sanctions aimed at Russia in connection with the situation in Ukraine. India has abstained from sanctioning Moscow and, while prior to this year it rarely bought Russian oil, has stepped up purchases tenfold since March, taking advantage of the discount Moscow has offered. According to Bloomberg, Russia overtook Saudi Arabia as the South Asian nation’s second-biggest supplier in June, second only to Iraq.

https://www.rt.com/business/560800-india-us-russian-oil-products/ Read more …

“Meanwhile, as of this writing, the blasted US government still will not allow unvaccinated travelers across its borders!”

They’ll keep that up till after the US Open, just to spite Djokovic.

A Deeper Dive Into the CDC Reversal (Tucker)

It would have been fascinating to be a fly on the wall in the brainstorming sessions that led to this little treatise. The wording was chosen very carefully, not to say anything false outright, much less admit any errors of the past, but to imply that it was only possible to say these things now. “As SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, continues to circulate globally, high levels of vaccine- and infection-induced immunity and the availability of effective treatments and prevention tools have substantially reduced the risk for medically significant COVID-19 illness (severe acute illness and post–COVID-19 conditions) and associated hospitalization and death. These circumstances now allow public health efforts to minimize the individual and societal health impacts of COVID-19 by focusing on sustainable measures to further reduce medically significant illness as well as to minimize strain on the health care system, while reducing barriers to social, educational, and economic activity.“

In English: everyone can pretty much go back to normal. Focus on illness that is medically significant. Stop worrying about positive cases because nothing is going to stop them. Think about the bigger picture of overall social health. End the compulsion. Thank you. It’s only two and a half years late. What about mass testing? Forget it: “All persons should seek testing for active infection when they are symptomatic or if they have a known or suspected exposure to someone with COVID-19.” Oh. What about the magic of track and trace? “CDC now recommends case investigation and contact tracing only in health care settings and certain high-risk congregate settings.” Oh. What about the unvaccinated who were so demonized throughout the last year?

“CDC’s COVID-19 prevention recommendations no longer differentiate based on a person’s vaccination status because breakthrough infections occur, though they are generally mild, and persons who have had COVID-19 but are not vaccinated have some degree of protection against severe illness from their previous infection.” Remember when 40% of the members of the black community in New York City who refused the jab were not allowed into restaurants, bars, libraries, museums, or theaters? Now, no one wants to talk about that. Also, universities, colleges, the military, and so on – which still have mandates in place – do you hear this? Everything you have done to hate on people, dehumanize people, segregate people, humiliate others as unclean, fire people and destroy lives, now stands in disrepute.

Meanwhile, as of this writing, the blasted US government still will not allow unvaccinated travelers across its borders! Not one word of the CDC’s turgid treatise was untrue back in the Spring of 2020. There was always “infection-induced immunity,” though Fauci and Co. constantly pretended otherwise. It was always a terrible idea to introduce “barriers to social, educational, and economic activity.” The vaccines never promised in their authorization to stop infection and spread, even though all official statements of the CDC claimed otherwise, repeatedly and often. You might also wonder how the great reversal treats masking. On this subject, there is no backing off. After all, the Biden administration still has an appeal in process to reverse the court decision that the mask mandate was illegal all along. “At the high COVID-19 Community Level,” the CDC adds, “additional recommendations focus on all persons wearing masks indoors in public and further increasing protection to populations at high risk.”

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“Neither he nor any of his family have publicly said they were able to watch the raid as it unfolded.”

Trump And His Family Watched FBI Raid on CCTV (CB)

One of former President Donald Trump’s attorneys has revealed new details regarding the raid on his Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Fla., early last week. Lawyer Christina Bobb said that the former president and many family members watched the FBI during “the whole” raid, meaning that they likely would have been able to see if agents planted any evidence, as Trump suggested last week. “It’s kind of funny. I think the folks in New York, President Trump and his family, probably had a better view than I did because they had the CCTV, they were able to watch,” Bobb told the streaming network Real America’s Voice, according to the New York Post. “I was, you know, I was stuck in the parking lot there to you know, collect paper and answer questions,” she added.

“But they were actually able to see the whole thing. So they actually have a better idea of what took place inside.” Bobb said that the FBI had initially instructed Trump’s staff and his attorneys to shut off the closed circuit TV security system, but they refused to do so and allowed it to remain in operation the entire raid. Since last Monday’s raid, Trump has repeatedly said that it is possible that the FBI could have planted evidence in order to give Joe Biden’s Justice Department something to charge him with since, as others have speculated, the partisan Jan. 6 Committee hearings have yet to produce anything significant.

“The FBI and others from the Federal Government would not let anyone, including my lawyers, be anywhere near the areas that were rummaged and otherwise looked at during the raid on Mar-a-Lago,” Trump wrote on Truth Social last week, The Post noted. “Everyone was asked to leave the premises, they wanted to be left alone, without any witnesses to see what they were doing, taking or, hopefully not, ‘planting.’ Why did they STRONGLY insist on having nobody watching them, everybody out? Obama and Clinton were never ‘raided,’ despite big disputes!” he added. Trump was physically in New York City when the raid took place. Neither he nor any of his family have publicly said they were able to watch the raid as it unfolded.

DeSantis

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“I respectfully request that these documents be immediately returned to the location from which they were taken. Thank you! ”

FBI Took Documents Protected By Attorney-Client Privilege From Mar-a-Lago (CB)

The FBI grabbed documents that were protected by attorney-client privilege, and possibly executive privilege, during its raid on former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence. The Department of Justice opposed the request of the former president’s attorneys to appoint a special master to review the records, a source said to Fox News exclusively. Sources familiar with the investigation told Fox News Saturday that the former president’s team was informed that boxes labeled A-14, A-26, A-43, A-13, A-33, and a set of documents—all seen on the final page of the FBI’s property receipt —contained information covered by attorney-client privilege.

The FBI seized classified records from Trump’s Palm Beach home during its unprecedented Monday morning raid, including some marked as top secret. But the former president is disputing the classification, saying the records have been declassified. “Sources told Fox News that some records could be covered by executive privilege, which gives the president of the United States and other officials within the executive branch the authority to withhold certain sensitive forms of advice and consultation between the president and senior advisors,” Fox News said. The former president responded to the news on his truth Social account on Sunday, saying “Oh great! It has just been learned that the FBI, in its now famous raid of Mar-a-Lago, took boxes of privileged “attorney-client” material, and also “executive” privileged material, which they knowingly should not have taken. By copy of this TRUTH, I respectfully request that these documents be immediately returned to the location from which they were taken. Thank you!

Magistrate Judge Bruce Reinhart unsealed the warrant on Friday after a request from both the Department of Justice and the former president. The warrant said that the search be done “on or before August 19, 2022,” and “in the daytime 6:00 am. to 10:00 p.m.” “The locations to be searched include the ‘45 Office,’ all storage rooms, and all other rooms or areas within the premises used or available to be used by FPOTUS and his staff and in which boxes or documents could be stored, including all structures or buildings on the estate,” it said. The warrant gave the FBI the authority to seize “all physical documents and records constituting evidence, contraband, fruits of crime, or other items illegally possessed” in violation of U.S. Code.

[..] Trump noted on his Truth Social platform on Friday that he, as president, had already declassified the documents that were confiscated by agents. “Number one, it was all declassified. Number two, they didn’t need to “seize” anything. They could have had it anytime they wanted without playing politics and breaking into Mar-a-Lago. It was in secured storage, with an additional lock put on as per their request,” the former president posted. “They could have had it anytime they wanted—and that includes LONG ago. ALL THEY HAD TO DO WAS ASK.” he continued.

Read more …

He doesn’t defend Trump, he attacks that stupid Act. But all of DC thinks: it might come in handy some time.

Rand Paul Calls To Repeal Espionage Act Following Mar-a-Lago Raid (JTN)

Kentucky Republican Sen. Rand Paul called for the Espionage Act to be repealed as the Department of Justice is investigating whether former President Donald Trump mishandled classified materials under the 1917 law. “The espionage act was abused from the beginning to jail dissenters of WWI. It is long past time to repeal this egregious affront to the 1st Amendment,” Paul tweeted on Saturday, including a link to a 2019 article titled, “Repeal the Espionage Act” by Jacob G. Hornberger at the Future of Freedom Foundation. The article described the Espionage Act as a “tyrannical law” that was enacted during World War I “not to punish people for spying but rather for criticizing the draft and the war.”


Hornberger specifically defended WikiLeaks Founder Julian Assange, who is facing prosecution under the Espionage Act for releasing what Hornberger describes as “a mountain of evidence disclosing the inner workings and grave wrongdoing on the part of the U.S. national-security establishment.” Paul’s defense of the former president comes despite a tense relationship at times between the two. The FBI raided Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida last week to try and find “physical documents with classification markings,” information about national defense, and “any government and/or Presidential Records created between January 20, 2017, and January 20, 2021,” according to a warrant from the agency.

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“The committee requested transcribed interviews with more than 30 administration officials, but the Biden administration refused to take part.”

House GOP To Issue Scathing Report About Biden’s Afghanistan Withdrawal (CNN)

At the height of the United States’ withdrawal from Afghanistan there were only 36 State Department officials on the ground at the Kabul airport to process Afghans who were trying to evacuate, according to a soon-to-be released report from House Republicans, despite the department’s claims that they had surged resources to handle the crowds desperately trying to flee. This figure — which meant there was “roughly one consular officer for every 3,444 evacuees” — is one of several previously undisclosed details outlined in the highly critical report examining the chaotic US withdrawal last August.

The House Foreign Affairs Committee Republicans’ report, which is being published around one year after the country’s capital fell to the Taliban, reveals additional new details about the Biden administration’s failure to adequately plan for and execute the US withdrawal from Afghanistan. The report, a final draft of which was obtained by CNN, also says the administration did not accurately portray the nature of the events on the ground and failed to put a plan in place to prevent American-trained Afghan commandos from being recruited by America’s adversaries.

“A lot of the Biden administration’s evacuation plans were done in the spring 2021 — some even before the president announced the withdrawal. And they were never updated despite the Taliban battlefield gains, despite the deteriorating security situation, and despite the revised intelligence assessments,” said Rep. Michael McCaul, the top Republican on the House Foreign Affairs Committee. President Joe Biden announced in mid-April 2021 that the US would withdraw all remaining troops from Afghanistan by September 11 of that year — the 20th anniversary of the terrorist attacks that launched America’s war there. While Biden long wanted to end US involvement in the Afghanistan war, he attributed the decision, in part, to the deal brokered with the Taliban by the Trump administration, which had a commitment to withdraw by May 1, 2021.

The House report found that it was not until mid-June 2021 that the US Embassy in Kabul held an Operational Planning Team (OPT) meeting with members of the US military and US diplomats focused on pre-planning for non-combatant evacuation operations (NEO). The meeting was described by one US military officer involved as “the first time” that the embassy began “looking at the possibility of NEO.” Because of the “complete lack of proper planning by the Biden administration” there were consequences: evacuation flights “were taking off at only about 50% of their capacity” five days into the NEO, the report says. The report references slow processing at the gates and mayhem outside the gates — a government evacuation process so chaotic and disorderly that even staffers for Vice President Kamala Harris and first lady Jill Biden were contacting outside groups to try to get people out, representatives for the groups told the committee.

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Is there a more peaceful symbol than a rosary?

Atlantic Op-ed Claims Catholic Rosary Has Become ‘An Extremist Symbol’ (Fox)

Atlantic contributor Daniel Panneton declared that the Catholic rosary has become a “symbol” of religious radicalism. The rosary is a string of beads or knots used by Catholics as they pray a sequence of prayers, but one writer warned they have taken on a far darker meaning in modern times. “Just as the AR-15 rifle has become a sacred object for Christian nationalists in general, the rosary has acquired a militaristic meaning for radical-traditional (or ‘rad trad’) Catholics,” Panneton claimed in the Sunday piece titled, “How the Rosary Became an Extremist Symbol.” He added, “On this extremist fringe, rosary beads have been woven into a conspiratorial politics and absolutist gun culture. These armed radical traditionalists have taken up a spiritual notion that the rosary can be a weapon in the fight against evil and turned it into something dangerously literal.”

Panneton slammed an entire online ecosystem for disseminating imagery featuring Christian warriors both historical and modern, suggesting that “social-media pages are saturated with images of rosaries draped over firearms, warriors in prayer, Deus Vult (‘God wills it’) crusader memes, and exhortations for men to rise up and become Church Militants.” He observed that rosary beads “provide an aide-mémoire for a sequence of devotional prayers, are a widely recognized symbol of Catholicism and a source of strength. And many take genuine sustenance from Catholic theology’s concept of the Church Militant and the tradition of regarding the rosary as a weapon against Satan.”

The Atlantic contributor gave a wide variety of examples of how the modern association between rosaries and fighting men has become marketable to a niche audience, noting that “radical-traditional Catholics sustain their own cottage industry of goods and services,” such as one store that “sells replicas of the rosaries issued to American soldiers during the First World War as ‘combat rosaries.'” The Swiss Guard, who have been protecting the Vatican in their iconic 16th-century armor and uniforms for centuries, were also addressed, as Panneton recounted: “In 2016, the pontifical Swiss Guard accepted a donation of combat rosaries; during a ceremony at the Vatican, their commander described the gift as ‘the most powerful weapon that exists on the market.'”

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This is from Feb 2022, but I include it anyway, to show that the industry relies on not-yet existing tech to keep going. That’s always a very bad sign.

South America’s ‘Lithium Fields’ And The Dark Side Of Our Electric Future (EN)

Lithium extraction fields in South America have been captured by an aerial photographer in stunning high definition. But while the images may be breathtaking to look at, they represent the dark side of our swiftly electrifying world. Lithium represents a route out of our reliance on fossil fuel production. As the lightest known metal on the planet, it is now widely used in electric devices from mobile phones and laptops, to cars and aircraft. Lithium-ion batteries are most famous for powering electric vehicles, which are set to account for up to 60 per cent of new car sales by 2030. The battery of a Tesla Model S, for example, uses around 12 kg of lithium. These batteries are the key to lightweight, rechargeable power. As it stands, demand for lithium is unprecedented and many say it is crucial in order to transition to renewables. However, this doesn’t come without a cost – mining the chemical element can be harmful to the environment.

[..] Gleb Yushin, a professor at the School of Materials and Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology, US, argues that new battery technology needs to be developed using more common, environmentally-friendly materials. His paper is published in the journal Nature, alongside co-authors including Kostiantyn Turcheniuk. As reserves of lithium and cobalt will not meet future demand, suggested elements to focus on instead are iron and silicon. Researchers like Yushin are working on new battery alternatives that would replace lithium and cobalt (another harmful metal) with less toxic and more easily accessible materials.

As reserves of lithium and cobalt will not meet future demand, suggested elements to focus on instead are iron and silicon. Unlike lithium-ion batteries, iron flow batteries are also cheaper to manufacture, renewable energy veteran Rich Hossfeld told Bloomberg recently, in an article entitled ‘Iron battery breakthrough could eat lithium’s lunch’. “We call on materials scientists, engineers and funding agencies to prioritise the research and development of electrodes based on abundant elements,” maintains Yushin.“Otherwise, the roll-out of electric cars will stall within a decade.”

Lithium Fields’ in the Salar de Atacama salt flats in northern Chile. Tom Hegen

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Totally normal

 

 

Lucky chops

 

 

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in virustime with Paypal, Bitcoin and Patreon.

 

 

 

Jul 282022
 


Pablo Picasso Houses 1937

 

Kiev Threatens To Attack Russian Territory (RT)
Former Russian President Presents Future Map Of Ukraine (RT)
Flaws in EU Gas Rationing Plan Revealed (RT)
German Mayors Want Nord Stream 2 Opened (RT)
The National Tragedy of Hunter Biden’s Laptop (Lee Smith)
New Dutch Minister No Longer Rules Out Compulsory Buy-out Of Farmers (AD)
A Recession by Any Other Name (Magness)
No, The Economy Will NOT Be OK (Denninger)
The Small Print That Destroyed America (Tucker)
Inventing Diagnoses to Cover Up Vaccine Injury (CHD)
How the CDC Coordinated With Big Tech To Censor Americans (WFB)

 

 

 

 

Stephen F. Cohen and John Mearsheimer
https://twitter.com/i/status/1552256839043219459

 

 

 

 

Neom is being built in Saudi Arabia.

 

 

 

 

“..Moscow might respond with a “massive strike” targeting the Ukrainian leadership if that happened..”

Kiev Threatens To Attack Russian Territory (RT)

Kiev will not hesitate to strike Russian territories if it deems it necessary, Aleksey Danilov, the head of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council, said during a live broadcast on Wednesday. The security council closely follows all the missile and air strikes Russia launches against Ukraine, Danilov said, adding that Ukrainian authorities are well aware of all the locations in Russia from which the attacks have been carried out. Kiev possesses “enough political will” to order a strike against these targets if such a need arises, he added. “If needed … anyone [in the government] will act without hesitation and sign anything that needs to be signed to destroy these objects,”Danilov said.

The security council head also stated that Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky’s words about Ukraine retaliating against the locations from which the strikes are launched serves as “proof” of Kiev’s determination. Earlier, some Ukrainian officials said that Kiev forces may hit targets on the Crimean Peninsula or the Crimean Bridge, which they consider to be a key supply route for Russian forces. Ukraine’s military intelligence spokesman, Vadim Skibitskiy, claimed that Crimea could be targeted by US-supplied M142 HIMARS and M270 MLRS multiple launch rocket systems. Moscow responded by saying that Ukraine would pay a heavy price if it decided to strike Crimea. Russia’s former president, Dmitry Medvedev, said in mid-July that Moscow might respond with a “massive strike” targeting the Ukrainian leadership if that happened.

The US and its allies previously appeared to be reluctant to supply Ukraine with longer-range weapons capable of striking targets deep inside Russia as they were concerned about a potential escalation of the conflict. Washington has not yet agreed to send tactical ballistic missiles with a distance of up to 300 kilometers to Ukraine. Such missiles can be used by the US-made HIMARS multiple rocket launchers the US handed over to Kiev. However, according to the spokesman for the army of the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR), Eduard Basurin, Ukrainian forces may have already received 300km-range HIMARS missiles. DPR troops have found pieces of munitions with a range of 110 kilometers to 120 kilometers, which meant that Kiev could have the 300km-missiles as well, Basurin told the Russian media last week.

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“Seven regions in the West have been annexed by Poland, and three in the southwest by Hungary and Romania, respectively. Everything else is marked “Russia.”

Former Russian President Presents Future Map Of Ukraine (RT)

Ukraine is more likely to be reduced to Kiev and its surroundings than to ever encompass Crimea and the Donbass republics, former Russian president Dmitry Medvedev said Wednesday on his Telegram channel. The one-time president and long-time prime minister who now heads the national security council also posted two maps helpfully illustrating his argument. The first map showed Ukraine in borders prior to the US-backed coup in 2014, including Crimea and the two eastern regions of Donetsk and Lugansk. A month after the militants backed by Washington seized power in Kiev, Crimea voted to rejoin Russia, while the two Donbass regions declared independence. “In the mind of the president of Ukraine, damaged by psychotropic substances, this is what the map of his country’s bright future will look like,” Medvedev wrote on Telegram.

“Western analysts believe it will look like this, actually,” he said, posting a second map. On it, “Ukraine” is reduced to Kiev and its surroundings. Seven regions in the West have been annexed by Poland, and three in the southwest by Hungary and Romania, respectively. Everything else is marked “Russia.” He did not specify which Western experts may have envisioned such a partition.

The Ukrainian government has repeatedly rejected any possibility of territorial concessions, insisting that Kiev’s objectives were a “capitulation” of Russia and “reintegration” of Donbass and Crimea. Medvedev served as president of Russia between 2008 and 2012, and then as prime minister until 2020, when he was put in charge of the national security council. Over the course of the conflict in Ukraine, he has made a name for himself with colorful Telegram posts. Just this month, he warned Kiev of “Judgment Day”if they attacked Crimea and offered a list of “Russian sins,” followed up by those of the West.

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Lip service solidarity.

Flaws in EU Gas Rationing Plan Revealed (RT)

The EU’s gas rationing plan approved on Tuesday may not stand the test of a cold winter, The Economist wrote on Wednesday. A “meagre” cut to gas consumption will not solve the continent’s problems, the publication wrote, referring to the plan that will see most EU nations voluntarily reduce their use of natural gas by 15% between August 1 and March 31 next year. The deal was struck as fears grow over a possible halt of Russian gas supplies. At the moment the Nord Stream 1 pipeline, a key artery that carries natural gas from Russia to Germany, is operating at 20% capacity. Russian energy giant Gazprom cites technical issues with turbines as the reason for the reduced flow. However, the EU believes that Moscow is using gas to exert political pressure on the bloc. An alternative route via Ukraine has been restricted by Kiev.

The main reason for the rationing is to “ensure that a shortfall of Russian gas does not leave homes unheated or factories shuttered”, The Economist writes, but according to the publication, its success largely depends on the weather. “If the coming winter is mild, the EU may scrape by. But if it is cold the bloc will have to prove that it can hold together when times are hard. Germany in particular will need to show solidarity with other member countries. It sits at the center of Europe’s network of gas pipelines. Will it, for instance, allow gas to flow to the Czech Republic to keep people from freezing there if that means its factories have to go on furlough?” the publication writes, adding that at the start of the coronavirus pandemic in 2020 some European countries, including Germany, imposed bans on exports of protective gear to avoid shortages at home.

The plan has several other weaknesses, The Economist notes, such as different levels of exposure to Russian gas among the nations. Before its approval, a number of countries including Italy, Hungary, Poland, Portugal and Spain voiced their concerns, saying that they had already cut consumption, citing a lack of connection to Europe’s gas pipeline network and the fact that decisions on energy are usually a national issue, Bloomberg wrote earlier. The approved plan came with some exemptions, with Spain and Portugal reportedly allowed to use just 7% less gas. Other concessions were made too but proved not enough to get the plan unanimous approval, with Hungary voting against it.

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“NS2 does not use Siemens turbines, and can be maintained regardless of the sanctions.”

German Mayors Want Nord Stream 2 Opened (RT)

Berlin’s policy of trying to give up imports of Russian natural gas is likely to create hardship and spark unrest, seven mayors from the German island of Ruegen wrote in a letter sent to the regional and federal governments on Wednesday. They also urged the federal government to allow gas imports via the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, given the current technical difficulties with Nord Stream 1 – something Berlin has steadfastly rejected. In the letter addressed to federal economy minister Robert Habeck and Manuela Schwesig, prime minister of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, the mayors “strongly condemn” the current conflict in Ukraine but urge the government to consider the damage its policy could do to the German population and the economy, according to the news agency DPA.

“We are of the opinion that the path taken by the federal government to disconnect from Russian energy sources is not the right one,” the seven mayors wrote. Initially drafted by the leaders of Bergen, Binz and Sassnitz, the letter was later signed by four more jurisdictions on Ruegen, Germany’s largest island and a popular tourist destination. Giving up gas imports from Russia would mean an explosion in the cost of living, which would lead to social instability and unrest that could get out of control, the mayors wrote, according to German media. Calls from the federal government to save energy – such as showering less and foregoing hot water – “defy understanding,” they added.

“As the mayors of this island, we don’t want to have to accept any further restrictions,” Sassnitz city manager Frank Kracht told the Mecklenburg-Vorpommern affiliate of the TV station NDR. Rejecting the proposals to expand the number of wind turbines near residential areas, calling them a health hazard, the mayors advocated “a general rethinking of the solution to the current problems in relations with Russia.” Among their suggestions was to get additional natural gas via the Nord Stream 2 pipeline. Finished in late 2021, the pipeline from Russia to Germany under the Baltic Sea was just waiting for the operating permit from Berlin – which was suspended indefinitely on February 22, two days before Russia sent troops into Ukraine.

NS2 was supposed to double the volume of Russian gas exports, but was delayed by US sanctions seeking to protect Ukraine’s gas transit earnings. Nord Stream 1, which continues to supply Germany with gas, is currently operating at only 20% capacity, due to maintenance requirements. Its operator, Gazprom, says several turbines at the Portovaya compressor station need servicing to maintain certification. The first one was held up by Canada, citing anti-Russian sanctions over the conflict in Ukraine, until Berlin intervened seeking an exemption. NS2 does not use Siemens turbines, and can be maintained regardless of the sanctions.

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Deep dive.

The National Tragedy of Hunter Biden’s Laptop (Lee Smith)

In September 2020, the repairman gave a copy of the hard drive to Rudolph Giuliani’s lawyer. The former New York City mayor had been investigating the Bidens’ work in Ukraine for nearly two years at that point after receiving a tip from a former federal prosecutor. Giuliani helped disseminate copies of the hard drive, one of which Maxey took to The Washington Post. Nine months after Maxey sat with Post reporters to explain the contents of the hard drive, the paper reported its own independent authentication of 22,000 emails in March of 2022. These included communications regarding a deal with a Chinese energy company that earned Hunter $5 million, and his work with Burisma, the Ukrainian energy firm that paid him $83,333 per month to sit on its board.

His father later boasted in public that he’d threatened to withhold a $1 billion loan guarantee to Ukraine unless the central government in Kyiv fired the prosecutor investigating Burisma. At roughly the same time The Washington Post authenticated these emails, The New York Times also verified communications found on Hunter Biden’s computer. So, have America’s two most prestigious newsprint organizations at last acknowledged that they were wrong to believe former intelligence officials who claimed the New York Post’s October 2020 reporting on the Biden laptop was Russian disinformation? Of course not. They were and remain proud of their role in helping push Trump out of Washington. According to one survey, one out of six Biden voters said that had they known about Hunter’s laptop in time, they wouldn’t have voted for his father.

What concerned the prestige press wasn’t that they’d missed a big story—or that they’d participated in a campaign run by U.S. intelligence services to prevent American voters from learning about the extent of the Bidens’ political and moral corruption. Rather, they were worried that an even bigger story about the Bidens might be coming down the road. Maxey says he called the Post in March to say he was taking the hard drive to Switzerland to meet with a cyber expert named Vincent Kaufmann who told him he thought he could retrieve material deleted from the laptop. The Times published its story two days after Maxey landed in Zurich, and the Post published its own “investigation” two weeks later, pronouncing some of the emails genuine while claiming it was hard to tell with others. As a longtime platform for U.S. intelligence operations—and owned by the same man, Jeff Bezos, who owns the cloud computing technology that Amazon Web Services uses to store the CIA’s information—the Post wanted to help the White House get ahead of potential problems.

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Google translate. Rutte is blowing up his own country.

New Dutch Minister No Longer Rules Out Compulsory Buy-out Of Farmers (AD)

Where the cabinet previously spoke of ‘starting a conversation on the farm about new possibilities’, there is now a completely different tone. The new minister Christianne van der Wal no longer excludes compulsory buy-out of farmers. It still sounded friendly in the coalition agreement. “We will start a conversation on the farm to look for the possibilities together,” the cabinet said in a sweet note in mid-December. When Van der Wal is asked in a debate with the House of Representatives on Thursday what she actually means by that sentence, she says that it will certainly be difficult for farmers who run a business from generation to generation, who just want to continue with their business. . But she also emphasizes: ,,I want to tell the honest story. And that is that this is not feasible in every area.”

The government wants to encourage as many farmers as possible to participate voluntarily in reducing nitrogen emissions. But meanwhile, heavier terms are also sounding, such as ‘expropriation’ and ‘not escaping’ from forced sale. The new VVD minister takes a harder tone. The Minister for Nature and Nitrogen expects that compulsory buy-out of farmers cannot be avoided in several cases. “It’s a last resort, but at the same time it’s a realism that we can’t always avoid it. I really can’t rule it out,” she admits. The liberal politician wants to work with a reward system in 2022 and 2023. The sooner you decide to stop, the higher the compensation. After that period it becomes less friendly. “The honest story is that you cannot escape expropriation, if the voluntariness is not there.”

Within a few weeks she will send a plan to the House, stating how she wants to tackle the nitrogen problem. Maybe she will peek at the neighbors for that. Two weeks ago, the Flemish government declared that the most polluting livestock farms must close by 2025. That is about sixty companies. More than a hundred other livestock farms have to significantly reduce their nitrogen emissions. Nitrogen is a major problem in both the Netherlands and Flanders, following a court ruling. Only in the Netherlands this is a multiple of the number of farmers in Flanders.

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All they have is wordgames. AKA You’re on your own.

A Recession by Any Other Name (Magness)

The Biden administration appears to be preparing for a recession—or rather, for news of one. Rather than tackling the underlying economic problems, the White House is playing word games. Economists have long defined a recession as “a period in which real GDP declines for at least two consecutive quarters,” to quote the popular economics textbook by Nobel laureates Paul Samuelson and William Nordhaus. This definition isn’t perfect, but it describes almost every downturn since World War II. With expectations of low or even negative growth for the first two quarters of 2022, President Biden’s Council of Economic Advisers has been trying to blunt the news by disavowing this textbook definition. It is “neither the official definition nor the way economists evaluate the state of the business cycle,” reads a post on the White House website.

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen endorsed the claim on NBC over the weekend. In place of the standard economic definition of a recession, administration officials point to the business-cycle dating committee of the National Bureau of Economic Research as the “official recession scorekeeper.” It’s a highly convenient move for them. While the nonpartisan NBER employs a robust set of indicators to pinpoint recessions, it does so retrospectively. The great recession of 2007-09, for example, had already been under way for a year before the NBER released its determination. Sometimes recessions end by the time NBER classifies them, and this built-in delay limits the utility of NBER scorekeeping for real-time policy decisions.

The White House’s attempt to wordsmith its way around a recession shows the dangers of politicizing economic terms. Mr. Biden’s economic advisers are trying to buy time by exploiting NBER’s otherwise defensible methodology. They hope doing so will insulate the administration from the electoral backlash in the event of a downturn. There is no federal statute that appoints the NBER as the official arbiter of recessions. Quite the contrary, the federal government has historically followed the conventional textbook definition. The Gramm-Rudman-Hollings Act of 1985, which attempted to rein in the deficit by triggering mandatory sequestrations in federal agencies, introduced a recessionary escape clause for tough economic times. If the Congressional Budget Office projected a recession, Congress could fast-track a vote to suspend the sequestrations. The law defined a recession as a period when “real economic growth is projected or estimated to be less than zero with respect to each of any two consecutive quarters.”

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“Since nobody can ever consume more than 100% of anything this means that all such attempts, unless abandoned and reversed lead to economic disaster.”

No, The Economy Will NOT Be OK (Denninger)

No, this is not transitory. And since we’re headed for political season let me remind you of the sordid tale that led us here. We elected Donald Trump as President. Donald Trump deliberately, from his first day, pushed “easy money” policies that were in fact how he levered his real estate empire to “success.” Easy money policies are a scam, but a very easy to run scam that appears to be “great” for a while. The reason is simple. Take a “model economy” with, for example, GDP of $100,000. Presume 10% of the GDP is out in debt ($10,000) and further presume that the rate of interest, on average, is 2%. At the same time presume the nominal (that is, “in dollars”) growth rate of GDP is 3%. This looks “safe”, right? Well, it is if the amount of debt remains the same.

But it won’t because the rate of interest is less than the growth rate, that is, you’re paying people to borrow into existence credit that has nothing behind it “on the come” that the economy will expand, and they will do exactly that. sIf the amount of debt expands at 4% while the economy expands at 3% no matter the rate of interest above zero interest expense will eventually consume all economic output. Since nobody can ever consume more than 100% of anything this means that all such attempts, unless abandoned and reversed lead to economic disaster. This is not a matter of policy or debate it is mathematical fact and cannot be changed any more than 2 + 2 can made equal to anything other than 4. Now there is an argument for this sort of policy during recessions; in fact this was Keynes’ argument for attempting to level economic conditions: You spend in excess (that is, in deficit) during recessions, and you tax in excess during good times. This retards the economy during good times and boosts it during bad.

The problem: During good times nobody will do the necessary thing to balance the system; Keynes was a fool in that he believed in that which was impossible, which is to expect politicians to voluntarily screw themselves out of a job. Trump knew all of this and that borrowing at below the rate of economic expansion, whatever it is, screws someone. He knew it because he nearly blew his nascent empire up early in his career getting levered up into the maw of a recession, which came within an inch of destroying him economically. He was bailed out, which informed his future actions decades later when he had the power to bail himself and his political friends out as President. It is a fact that Trump ran record deficits during an economic expansion and he did it on purpose with the full consent and in fact authorship of Congress. That’s because under our Constitution Congress must do that in that all spending bills must originate in the US House.

That is, it’s not Bidenflation to start — it was Trumpflation. Biden and the Democrats, emboldened with what Trump got away with and the public clamor for more, piled it on even deeper once he got into office. But this time, as with all other times, it takes time for that to filter through to prices. Nixon created the conditions under which Ford and then Carter (and all of us) suffered; it was Nixon’s wage and price controls, along with his (according to historians) literal assault on Burns, the chair of The Fed at the time, that led to ruinous stagflation under Ford and Carter’s Presidency.

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” It’s not entirely clear, to me in any case, that Trump knew what was happening even then. He had a sense that he was doing something to stop the spread but he didn’t know entirely what.”

The Small Print That Destroyed America (Tucker)

In a maddening interview yesterday, Anthony Fauci performed his usual song and dance when faced with even the most mild questioning. He stonewalled in his trademarked way. He spoke in long, drawn-out sentences, emphasizing the word consonants, punctuated by pauses and silences that convey the sense of precision without the reality. He strung together terms that seem vaguely scientific which intimidated his interviewers into an overly cautious pose. “Oh wow, I’m interviewing a very powerful person,” the interviewer thinks, “so I had better not say anything wrong!” He’s been pulling this trick for 40 years. He is very good at it.

In this interview, several messages stands out: 1) in retrospect, we should have locked down even more, 2) he never pushed lockdowns; he was only passing on CDC guidance, and 3) he is utterly and completely blameless for all things, particularly in funding gain-of-function research which, in any case, is not responsible for the creation of the virus in Wuhan. The first part is startling because many of us have had the sense that lockdowns are in disrepute. Far from it: Fauci’s message is that next time, the lockdowns will be harder and longer. And there certainly will be more. The third part I feel sure will be revealed in time. The fear that the virus escaped from the lab is likely what drove the lockdowns agenda. What intrigues me the most is the second part, the claim that he never ordered lockdowns. This was the CDC and he only served as messenger. Everyone else is to blame for anything that went wrong.

In a second interview the same day, Fauci says this explicitly: “All I have ever done, if you go back and look at everything I’ve ever done, was to recommend common-sense, good CDC-recommended public health policies that have saved millions of lives. If you want to investigate me for that, go ahead.” I’m going back to the March 16, 2020, press conference at which Fauci, Deborah Birx, and Donald Trump are announcing a fundamental change of life in the United States, one that would disregard all normal rights and liberties. It’s not entirely clear, to me in any case, that Trump knew what was happening even then. He had a sense that he was doing something to stop the spread but he didn’t know entirely what.

This has always puzzled me. It’s one thing for him to be hornswoggled into greenlighting the destruction of the economy that was booming and roaring under his administration. That’s bad enough. But to be confused even about the details of what he was ordering that day is next-level stuff. The following exchange occurred that day. Trump is asked whether restaurants and other venues should close. Trump responds: “Right now we don’t have an order one way or the other. We don’t have an order, but I think it’s probably better that you don’t [go to restaurants].” From that, I gather that Trump believed that he was not forcing anything on anyone. A reporter asks for a clarification: “Telling people to avoid restaurants and bars is a different thing than saying that bars and restaurants should shut down over the next 15 days.

So why was it seen as being imprudent or not necessarily to take that additional step offered at additional guidance?” At this point, Trump demurs and turns over the microphone to Deborah Birx, who must not have been paying attention and says something vague about the virus living on hard surfaces. At this point, Fauci interrupts and says: “I just want, there’s an answer to this.” Fauci says the following: “The small print here. It’s really small print. ‘In states with evidence of community transmission, bars, restaurants, food courts, gyms and other indoor and outdoor venues where groups of people congregate should be closed.’”

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1899-2022.

Inventing Diagnoses to Cover Up Vaccine Injury (CHD)

So-called “fact-checkers” are having to work double-time to come up with ways to deny the undeniable fact that COVID-19 vaccines are causing injuries and deaths on a massive scale. The shot pushers and their media enablers have taken cover-up tactics to absurd new heights by, for example, chalking up the rash of fatal heart attacks and overnight deaths in athletes and young adults to a fluky condition referred to variously as “sudden adult death syndrome” or “sudden arrhythmic death syndrome” (SADS). What the COVID-19 vaccine-injured do not necessarily recognize, however, is the pretense that post-vaccination injuries and deaths are just “sad coincidences” — far from being unique to the pandemic jabs — is a trick as old as vaccination itself.

Facilitated by well-honed semantic and statistical flimflam, public health officials’ core strategy for perpetuating their fiction is to profess innocence — making unabashedly unsubstantiated pronouncements about vaccine safety, on the one hand, while on the other hand, declaring themselves “baffled” by ailments that emerge in the aftermath of a given vaccine’s rollout. In an astonishingly frank and prescient book, “The Fallacy of Vaccination,” published in 1899, Dr. Alexander Wilder called attention to the “growing conviction” among “profounder thinkers and observers” that vaccination was not only “utterly useless as a preventive” but “actually the means of disseminating disease afresh where it is performed.” Wilder noted, “whenever a vaccinator or corps of vaccinators set out upon a vaccinating crusade, there follows very generally a number of deaths from … maladies which have been induced by the operation. …”

Wilder also blew the whistle on the suppression and concealment of vaccine adverse events and deaths, describing a fellow physician’s urging of his “professional brethren to be slow to publish fatal cases of smallpox after vaccination” and outlining other shenanigans that sound all too familiar today: “Occasionally … a death by vaccination is published, and immediately the effort is put forth assiduously to make it to be believed that it was from some other cause. The statistics of smallpox, purporting to distinguish between vaccinated and unvaccinated persons, are too often not quite trustworthy. Many persons who have been vaccinated are falsely reported as unvaccinated. “Even when death occurs as the result of vaccination, the truth is concealed and the case represented as scarlet fever, measles, erysipelas [bacterial skin infection], or some ‘masked’ disease, in order to prevent too close questioning.”

Read more …

It’s all for your own good.

How the CDC Coordinated With Big Tech To Censor Americans (WFB)

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention coordinated with social media companies and Google to censor users who expressed skepticism or criticism of COVID-19 vaccines, according to a trove of internal communications obtained by America First Legal and shared exclusively with the Washington Free Beacon. Over the course of at least six months, starting in December 2020, CDC officials regularly communicated with personnel at Twitter, Facebook, and Google over “vaccine misinformation.” At various times, CDC officials would flag specific posts by users on social media platforms such as Twitter as “example posts.” In one email to a CDC staffer, a Twitter employee said he is “looking forward to setting up regular chats” with the agency.

Other emails show the scheduling of meetings with the CDC over how to best police alleged misinformation about COVID-19 vaccines. Although many of the posts flagged by the CDC contained false information about the COVID-19 vaccines, the efforts to police misinformation also resulted in mistaken acts of censorship. An April 2021 email from a CDC staffer to Facebook states that the “algorithms that Facebook and other social media networks are apparently using to screen out posting by sources of vaccine misinformation are also apparently screening out valid public health messaging, including [Wyoming] Health communications.” The communications reveal a high level of coordination between the government and tech industry during the pandemic and raise questions about the extent to which other private companies are working with the federal government to censor the public.

The Biden administration has faced criticism for engaging in what some have called “Orwellian” practices, such as the establishment of the Department of Homeland Security Disinformation Governance Board. The Free Beacon reported that the now-shuttered disinformation board arranged a meeting with a Twitter executive who blocked users from sharing stories about Hunter Biden’s laptop. The CDC’s effort to police alleged disinformation expanded to other federal agencies as well. An internal March 2021 email from a senior CDC staffer states “we are working on [sic] project with Census to leverage their infrastructure to identify and monitor social media for vaccine misinformation.”

Read more …

 

 

 

 

 

Gonzalo : The Persecution of Alina Lipp and Graham Phillips

 

 

 

 

Wonderful dog life
https://twitter.com/i/status/1552051138530349062

 

 

Old dogs

 

 

Sculpt
https://twitter.com/i/status/1552260484681928704

 

 

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Jul 162022
 
 July 16, 2022  Posted by at 9:01 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  27 Responses »


Pablo Picasso Guernica [Study] V 1937

 

Useful European Idiots (Vilches)
The Imaginary War (Lawrence)
Is A US-Russia War Becoming Inevitable? (Pat Buchanan)
The Stupendous Tale (Tarik)
Europe’s Thirst For LNG Is Causing Blackouts In Developing Countries (OP)
Geert Vanden Bossche: Mass Covid Vax Triggering New Pandemics (NA)
Low Demand For Young Kids’ Covid Vaccines Is Alarming Doctors (Pol.)
Health Experts Are Quitting The NIH and CDC In Droves (DM)
Elon Musk Wants To Push Twitter Trial Back To 2023 (NYP)
A Tale of the Taco (Jim Kunstler)
Assange Fights Extradition To United States With Two Appeals (Dissenter)

 

 

 

 

Twitter board

 

 

 

 

NATO myths

 

 

 

 

“The US-UK cabal does not want Europe and Russia to trade, do business, relate, or grow together in any way, shape, or form.”

Useful European Idiots (Vilches)

“ Washington and London have drawn ´useful European idiots´ into an economic war against Russia ” – said former Russian president Dmitry Medvedev – adding that “the onset of a systemic crisis in the Eurozone is beginning to come true.” He added that Anglo-Saxons on both sides of the Atlantic conned EU members “like a couple of shell-game tricksters” by drawing them into an unwarranted economic war against Moscow which is actually an Anglo-Saxon project, not theirs. Paraphrasing James Carville, “it´s the Anglo-Saxons, stupid”. The US-UK cabal does not want Europe and Russia to trade, do business, relate, or grow together in any way, shape, or form. So they designed, built and forced upon Europe the current John Bolton-Ukraine war which had plan A (now failed) with Russia as target and plan B as substitute with Europe itself as the intended victim coming next.

What Dmitry Medvedev may not know though is that such ”useful European idiots” can be broken down into 3 fairly distinct categories starting with the EU “well-trained career idiots” basically focused on continuously earning salaries and perks way above their capabilities. So they know that (a) the EU system rewards them generously despite their obvious mediocrity and limitations and (b) thus do not dare to question, doubt, let alone defy the EU system or dictats. They all know and feel every day of their lives that the EU ´system´ has a very strict pecking order and what top-cock (or top-hen) says to do or say or think is to be summarily executed without questioning the mandate, even if against European best interests as is the case.

This simplifies the problem from the Washington-London perspective as by controlling a handful of EU leaders (more on that later) the rest just follow the Pied Piper of Hamelin. Furthermore, these EU-captured intellectual simpleton retards are not dumb enough to the extreme of questioning their unequivocal role (they are aware of it) and accordingly constantly strengthen their vested-interests relationship. In sum, they work hard at it. Then there is a second category of “useful European idiots” grouping the visible top EU leaders – many unelected — who can either be (a) plain corrupt as traditionally allowed for in Europe or (b) perceive themselves as God-chosen to lead Europe to a glorious yet undefined destiny no matter if actively hijacking any representational capacity and values they may have received.

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“.. a Marvel Comics of a conflict with little grounding in reality..”

The Imaginary War (Lawrence)

What were the policy cliques, “the intelligence community” and the press that serves both going to do when the kind of war in Ukraine they talked incessantly about turned out to be imaginary, a Marvel Comics of a conflict with little grounding in reality? I have wondered about this since the Russian intervention began on Feb. 24. I knew the answer would be interesting when finally we had one. Now we have one. Taking the government-supervised New York Times as a guide, the result is a variant of what we saw as the Russiagate fiasco came unglued: Those who manufacture orthodoxies as well as consent are slithering out the side door. I could tell you I don’t intend to single out the Times in this wild chicanery, except that I do.

The once-but-no-longer newspaper of record continues to be singularly wicked in its deceits and deceptions as it imposes the official but imaginary version of the war on unsuspecting readers. As Consortium News’s properly suspecting readers will recall, Vladimir Putin was clear when he told the world Russia’s intentions as it began its intervention. These were two: Russian forces went into Ukraine to “demilitarize and de–Nazify” it, a pair of limited, defined objectives. An astute reader of these commentaries pointed out in a recent comment thread that the Russian president had once again proven, whatever else one may think of him, a focused statesman with an excellent grasp of history. At the Potsdam Conference in July 1945, the Allied Control Council declared its postwar purpose in Germany as “the four D’s.” These were de–Nazification, demilitarization, democratization and decentralization.

Let’s give David Thompson, who brought this historical reference to my attention, a deserved byline here: “Putin’s reiteration of the de–Nazification and demilitarization principles established from the Potsdam Conference is not just some quaint tip of the hat to history. He was laying down a marker to the United States and the United Kingdom that the agreement reached at Potsdam in 1945 is still relevant and valid ….” The Russian president, whose entire argument with the West is that a just and stable order in Europe must serve the security interests of all sides, was simply restating objectives the trans–Atlantic alliance had once signed on to accomplish. In other words, he was pointing out said alliance’s gross hypocrisy as it arms the ideological descendants of German Nazis.

I dwell on this matter because the imaginary war began with the Biden regime’s and the press’s quite irresponsible misrepresentations of the Russian Federation’s aims in Ukraine. All else has flowed from it. You remember: Russian forces were going to “conquer” the whole of the nation, wipe out the Kiev regime, install a puppet government and then drive on to Poland, the Baltic states, Transnistria and the rest of Moldova, and who could imagine what after that. De–Nazification, we can now read, is a phony Kremlin dodge. Having lied outright on this score, the next edition of the comic went onto the market. Russia is failing to achieve its imaginary objectives. Low morale, desertions, poorly trained troops with not enough to eat, logistical failures, lousy artillery, inadequate ordnance, incompetent officers: The Russians were riding for a fall on Ukrainian soil.

The corollary here was the heroism, courage and battlefield grit of Ukrainian troops, least of all, the Azov Battalion, who were not any longer neo–Nazis. Never mind the Times, The Guardian, the BBC and various other mainstream publications and broadcasters had earlier told us about these ideological fanatics. That was then, this is now.

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Not yet.

Is A US-Russia War Becoming Inevitable? (Pat Buchanan)

At the NATO summit in Madrid, Finland was invited to join the alliance. What does this mean for Finland? If Russian President Vladimir Putin breaches the 830-mile Finnish border, the United States will rise to Helsinki’s defense and fight Russia on Finland’s side. If Putin makes a military move into Finland, the U.S. will go to war against the world’s largest nation with an arsenal of between 4,500 and 6,000 battlefield and strategic nuclear weapons. No Cold War president would have dreamed of making such a commitment — to risk the survival of our nation to defend territory of a country thousands of miles away that has never been a U.S. vital interest. To go to war with the Soviet Union over the preservation of Finnish territory would have been seen as madness during the Cold War.

Recall: Harry Truman refused to use force to break Joseph Stalin’s blockade of Berlin. Dwight Eisenhower refused to send U.S. troops to save the Hungarian freedom fighters being run down by Soviet tanks in Budapest in 1956. Lyndon B. Johnson did nothing to assist the Czech patriots crushed by Warsaw Pact armies in 1968. When Lech Walesa’s Solidarity was smashed on Moscow’s order in Poland in 1981, Ronald Reagan made brave statements and sent Xerox machines. While the U.S. issued annual declarations of support during the Cold War for the “captive nations” of Central and Eastern Europe, the liberation of these nations from Soviet control was never deemed so vital to the West as to justify a war with the USSR.

Indeed, in the 40 years of the Cold War, NATO, which had begun in 1949 with 12 member nations, added only four more — Greece, Turkey, Spain and West Germany. Yet, with the invitation to Sweden and Finland to join as the 31st and 32nd nations to receive an Article 5 war guarantee, NATO will have doubled its membership since what was thought — certainly by the Russians — to have been the end of the Cold War. All the nations once part of Moscow’s Warsaw Pact — East Germany, Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Romania, Bulgaria — are now members of a U.S.-led NATO — directed against Russia. Three former republics of the USSR — Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania — are now also members of NATO, a military alliance formed to corral and contain the nation to which they had belonged during the Cold War. Lithuania, with 2% of Russia’s population, has just declared a partial blockade of goods moving across its territory to Kaliningrad, Russia’s enclave on the Baltic Sea. To Putin’s protest, Vilnius has reminded Moscow that Lithuania is a member of NATO.

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Stupendously long, too.

The Stupendous Tale (Tarik)

I love Elvira. She’s my sweetheart, ma babe. Were I set to marry a central banker, she’d be the one. And if Putin is the Father of modern Russia, then Nabiullina is the fiercely protective Mother. Her handling of the Ruble attack after the Crimean intervention, was truly heroic. I can almost hear the strident cries from all her brats: the public, the business class, academia, media and the government, to lower rates and open wide the money spigot. Had she fallen under the pressure as they all do since Volker, had she not risen interest rates to 17%, the ruble would have been irrevocably broken.

The entire economy would have loaded up on unsustainable debt that would trigger the familiar hyper inflationary trend common to US$ vassals going rogue with no understanding of the money game (Zimbabwe, Venezuela, Turkey, Argentina…), and thus annihilated Putin’s achievements on all fronts. Instead, by letting inviable western focused businesses fail, financial resources could flow to local production and eastbound and southbound ventures. As a result the economy cleansed itself of obsolete dead weights, excessive unserviceable debt, and business discipline was enforced, leaving it lean and mean, ready do tackle any future rough patch.

Once the last treacherous FDI dollar and Euro left the space, the ruble stabilized, interest rates slowly normalized, dollar reserves now kept at strict minimum to cover trade requirements while overall reserves quickly recovered all losses. Sure some short term pain on certain sectors, but necessary and long term well worth it. No wonder Putin today would ask her for another term (note that he asked, she did not offer). With roughest seas ahead, he imperatively needs a proven captain that can handle any coming economic tempest. What’s funny, those accusing her of “Atlanticism” seem to have completely missed that her policies selectively strained precisely those western bent businesses, while protecting the Eurasianists and patriots. Some reproach her playing into IMF hands yet she kept the RCB free from its predatory loans, thus keeping Russia safe from the coercive influence. Go figure.

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BRICS getting stronger by the day. This is why.

Europe’s Thirst For LNG Is Causing Blackouts In Developing Countries (OP)

In June, the European Union imported more liquefied natural gas from the United States than pipeline gas from Russia for the first time ever. The unprecedented shift came as the EU scrambled to fill up its gas storage facilities ahead of the next heating season in fear Russia could turn off the gas tap at any moment. It also pushed LNG prices sky-high, making it unaffordable for developing countries. “Because of the Ukraine war, every single molecule that was available in our region has been purchased by Europe, because they’re trying to reduce their dependence on Russia,” Pakistan’s Petroleum Minister Musadik Malik said earlier this month as quoted by the Wall Street Journal.


Pakistan has been suffering from blackouts because of insufficient LNG supplies that the country needs to keep its power plants going. And the reason for the insufficient supplies is that Europe can pay more for the commodity, so traders are sending their cargos there, including cargos originally destined for Pakistan and other Asian countries. According to data from Wood Mackenzie cited by the Wall Street Journal, while Europe’s LNG imports soared 49 percent from the start of the year to mid-June, Pakistan’s imports fell by 15 percent during the same period, those to India shed 16 percent, and China’s LNG imports fell by more than a fifth. “The European gas crisis is sucking the world dry of LNG,” Valery Chow, head of Asia Pacific gas and LNG research at Wood Mackenzie, told the WSJ.”Emerging markets in Asia have borne the brunt of this and there is no end in sight.”

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“If the antiviral treatments are not made massively available to the vaccinated people, the highly vaccinated countries will likely experience a tsunami of hospitalizations and death..”

Geert Vanden Bossche: Mass Covid Vax Triggering New Pandemics (NA)

In his first interview with The New American, renowned scientist Dr. Geert Vanden Bossche described why mass vaccination with non-sterilizing (“leaky”) vaccines could not lead to herd immunity, and why he expected the Covid infection and disease to aggravate in the vaccinated individuals. The New American is proud to become the first media to speak with Dr. Vanden Bossche about his latest research dedicated to the issue of Covid mass vaccination initiating a chain reaction of new pandemics and epidemics with a potentially catastrophic impact on global health. In addition to that, the doctor explained how the constant Covid reinfections trigger relapse or metastasis of certain cancers in vaccinated people.


If the antiviral treatments are not made massively available to the vaccinated people, the highly vaccinated countries will likely experience a tsunami of hospitalizations and deaths among the vaccinated, especially the elderly and those vaccinated early on, said Dr. Vanden Bossche. The doctor pleaded with the parents NOT to vaccinate their children against Covid. The vaccination would irreparably damage their innate immune system and leave them vulnerable to infection and re-infection by Covid and a range of other deadly pathogens. That would result in a massive loss of children’s lives.

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They should listen to Geert.

Low Demand For Young Kids’ Covid Vaccines Is Alarming Doctors (Pol.)

States where parents have hesitated to inoculate their children against Covid-19 are now ordering fewer doses of the vaccines for children under 5 than others, underscoring the challenge facing the Biden administration as a highly transmissible variant sweeps the nation. Experts broadly agree states shouldn’t order more doses than they think they’ll use. But they worry the low demand in states such as Alabama and Mississippi is a warning sign of the widening ambivalence among many parents about the benefits of vaccinating children against the virus and continuing politicization of health care. “Never before have we had a vaccine available for young children that has been in billions of people before it was given to a young child,” said Kawsar Talaat, a vaccine expert at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

“The distrust in government, the distrust in public health and the distrust in science is growing and is very, very worrisome.” OLITICO contacted each state, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico to ask how many of the recently authorized Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines they ordered and 38 jurisdictions provided that data. Several of the states that reported placing some of the lowest orders relative to their under-5 populations also have low Covid-19 vaccination rates for 5- to 11-year-olds, an early indication that vaccinations for the youngest kids could follow a similar pattern. Since they became eligible last fall, 36.6 percent of 5- to 11-year-olds have received one Covid-19 shot and only 30 percent are fully vaccinated, compared to 69 percent of adults aged 18 to 49.

Public health experts and doctors attribute the slow uptake in part to the fact that many parents don’t believe that the vaccine is necessary, effective, or that its benefits outweigh any risks. [..] Florida — the only state to explicitly advise against Covid-19 vaccines for young children — did not pre-order any of the 5-and-under vaccines. It has now permitted practitioners and health systems to order the shots through a state portal, but is not making them available in state-run health programs.

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No credibility left. Or trust.

Health Experts Are Quitting The NIH and CDC In Droves (DM)

Two of America’s top health agencies are reportedly hemorrhaging staff as poor decision-making, described by staff as ‘bad science,’ has led to low morale. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) are both suffering staff shortages, according to Dr. Marty Makary, a top public-health expert at Johns Hopkins University, writes at Common Sense, the Substack run by former New York Times columnist, Bari Weiss. Major decisions made by the agencies that hurt morale included support for masking in schools, school closures during the pandemic and the authorization of COVID-19 vaccines for children four and under.

Both agencies, along with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have been mired in controversy throughout the pandemic for inconsistent messaging and for decision-making that didn’t seem to line up with available science. ‘They have no leadership right now. Suddenly, there’s an enormous number of jobs opening up at the highest level positions,’ an anonymous NIH scientist told Common Sense. Schools became a battleground of the COVID-19 pandemic in America. When the virus stormed the world in 2020, many officials immediately shut things down – schools, retail stores, entertainment venues, restaurants – out of an fear of the unknown. Initial data showed children suffered limited risk when they contracted the virus, though, and that it was mainly the elderly and severely immunocompromised that bore the virus’s burden.

Despite the evidence, the CDC still recommended schools stay closed until the end of the 2019-2020 school year. While individual school districts were allowed to make decisions for themselves – and many Republican leaning counties did quickly reopen schools – many major metropolitan areas under Democratic control kept schools closed for extended periods of time. Earlier this year, Makary told DailyMail.com that the decision to keep schools closed was one of the worst made in the pandemic, specifically citing that minority communities who disproportionately lived in these areas were set the furthest behind academically. ‘CDC failed to balance the risks of COVID with other risks that come from closing schools,’ an anonymous CDC scientist told Common Sense.

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“Human reviewers randomly sampled 100 accounts per day (less than 0.00005% of daily users)..” “That’s it. No automation, no AI, no machine learning.”

Elon Musk Wants To Push Twitter Trial Back To 2023 (NYP)

Elon Musk told a judge Friday that he needs until next year to respond to Twitter’s “meritless” claims that the mogul tried to scuttle the $44 billion deal to buy the social media platform. Musk’s attorneys accused Twitter of fudging the figures over fake accounts and want the trial pushed back until at least Feb. 13, 2023, to gather information over the disputed bot data, according to court documents filed with the Delaware court Friday evening. “The core dispute over false and spam accounts is fundamental to Twitter’s value,” Musk’s lawyers wrote in the 14-page filing. “It is also extremely fact and expert intensive, requiring substantial time for discovery.”

Musk, who first agreed to buy the site for $44 billion in April, pulled out of the deal last week after repeatedly claiming Twitter may be lying about what percentage of its users are bots — a move that Twitter’s lawyers blasted in their suit filed Wednesday as a “bad faith” attempt to walk away from the agreement. Twitter is seeking an unusually short four-day Delaware Court of Chancery trial starting in September, which some observers have interpreted as a show of confidence in its legal case. Musk’s lawyers called Twitter’s request an unjustifiable “bid for extreme expedition,” and accused the company of “a two-month treasure hunt of delays, technical bottlenecks, evasive answers, and, ultimately, refusals,”

“In a May 6 meeting with Twitter executives, Musk was flabbergasted to learn just how meager Twitter’s process was,” Musk’s lawyers wrote in the filing. “Human reviewers randomly sampled 100 accounts per day (less than 0.00005% of daily users) and applied unidentified standards to somehow conclude every quarter for nearly three years that fewer than 5% of Twitter users were false or spam. That’s it. No automation, no AI, no machine learning.”

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“Have Americans been wearing their masks over the wrong bodily orifice? Is anyone conducting a peer-reviewed study on this?”

A Tale of the Taco (Jim Kunstler)

Has anyone noticed, by the way, that the US is under an invasion of breakfast tacos? So many of them, and so many kinds! Huevos con chorizo… Huevos y tocino… Huevos con queso! The diversity is staggering! Oddly, the US fast food industry has remained silent on the issue, despite the threat to their operations. Someone, please, send a memo to Homeland Security Secretary, Alejandro Mayorkas: a mighty influx of breakfast tacos marches day-and-night across our border with Mexico. They are being distributed — for free! — by bus and airplane from sea to shining sea — while millions of Egg McMuffins, Sausage, Egg, and Cheese Croissan’wiches, Grand Slamwiches, Kickin’ Maple Chicken BreakFEASTs, Country Fried Steak Biscuits, Chocolate Chip/Pecan Waffles, and Texas Melts go uneaten, wilting under the infrared Glo-Ray warming bulbs of American franchise eateries.


The wonder really is: how can America even manage to eat breakfast with its head so far up its ass? Perhaps Dr. Jill Biden can address that question in an upcoming speech to the National Association of Colorectal Surgeons. Now that the mRNA vaccines have Covid-19 so well under control — ask Dr. Anthony Fauci (he knows!) — shouldn’t we be concerned with this new scourge of cranialrectosis (the next pandemic)? Have Americans been wearing their masks over the wrong bodily orifice? Is anyone conducting a peer-reviewed study on this?

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“..Baraitser failed to recognize that the US government “misrepresented” facts in the case and the case was “pursued for ulterior political motives.”

Assange Fights Extradition To United States With Two Appeals (Dissenter)

On June 23, grounds for appeal were submitted against Patel’s Home Office. They claimed Patel erred by failing to recognize that the US-UK Extradition Treaty prohibited extradition for a political offense.Edward Fitzgerald QC emphasized to the district judge that due process protections, like the Magna Carta of 1215, were enshrined in UK law for centuries. He noted the US Constitution contained protections against arbitrary detention as well. Yet as the “Don’t Extradite Assange Campaign” observed, during proceedings Baraitser acted like she could discard the Magna Carta in favor of a lesser law, which the UK Parliament passed.

Attorneys also maintained Patel erred when she accepted that “specialty arrangements” with the US government would protect Assange from the death penalty, criminal contempt proceedings, and further prosecution for “conduct outside of the extradition request.”The legal team filed long-awaited grounds of appeal against District Judge Vanessa Baraitser’s decision on June 30. They claimed the district judge erred when she determined it would not be “unjust and oppressive” to extradite him given the passage of time. On human rights grounds, the attorneys maintained the district judge was wrong to determine extradition would not deny his right to fair trial, his right to be free from inhuman and degrading treatment, his right to freedom of expression, and his right to be free from a novel and unforeseeable extension of the law.

Further grounds of appeal included a claim that Baraitser failed to recognize that the US government “misrepresented” facts in the case and the case was “pursued for ulterior political motives. “His attorneys objected to Baraitser accepting a second superseding indictment that was sprung on Assange just weeks before the extradition hearing in September 2020. They contend she should have “excised” all allegations from this indictment to uphold “procedural fairness.” Patel approved Assange’s extradition on June 17, and the Westminster Magistrates’ Court ordered his extradition on April 20 after the UK Supreme Court refused to hear a prior appeal. But Assange’s legal team did not appeal that decision. They appealed an earlier decision issued by Baraitser on January 4, 2021.

Baraitser’s decision initially determined that extradition would be “oppressive” for mental health reasons and blocked extradition, however, the UK High Court of Justice overturned the decision after the US government appealed. The rest of the district judge’s decision was troubling to Assange’s attorneys, as well as press freedom and human rights groups opposed to the prosecution. It was not appropriate for the attorneys to file an appeal until after the US government’s appeal was settled. The challenge to the district judge’s refusal to recognize Assange’s right to freedom of expression is a relief to press freedom organizations. Human rights organizations like Amnesty International will appreciate the appeal related to the risk of cruel and inhuman treatment. Assange’s legal team requested an extension for drafting their appeals, and the US government did not object. The extension was granted by the UK High Court.

Read more …

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Read the whole note

 

 


One of the best examples of cryptic plumage and mimicry in Australian birds is seen in the tawny frogmouth, which perch low on tree branches during the day camouflaged as part of the tree

 

 

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Jul 072022
 
 July 7, 2022  Posted by at 8:02 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  38 Responses »


Pablo Picasso The rescue 1936

 

‘Western’ Media Spread Copium To Prolong The War In Ukraine (MoA)
Ukraine’s Ambassador to Germany Touts Nazi War Criminal As A Hero (AT)
Why Doesn’t Africa Support The West In Sanctions War Against Russia? (Lumango)
China Queues Up to Join the Davos Beatdown (Luongo)
US-Led Naval Escort To Break Russian Blockade Could Risk Wider War (RS)
U.S. Should Leave NATO, Marjorie Taylor Greene Says (Celente)
Medvedev Warns US Against Pressing For War Crimes Court (AP)
The Empire Is Not Done Torturing Afghanistan (Escobar)
Interview With Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò (Bannon)
Hambro: BIS, Central Banks Are Rigging Gold Market Using Paper Gold (BStar)
Lab-Designed GMO “Carbon Capture Plants” to Replace Pastures (Chudov)
Cassidy Hutchinson Broke Every Rule Of Being A DC Aide (Van Buren)
The CDC Is Breaking Trust in Childhood Vaccination (Tablet)
Vanishing Vaccine Mandates (Spec.au)
TWICE as Many Vaccine Deaths as Covid Deaths in US Households (DS)

 

 

 

 

The “Golden Pin-up Boys For Klaus Schwab”

 

 

“Kindness is the language the deaf can hear and the blind can see.”
-Mark Twain

 

 

Comedian

 

 

 

 

“Russia needed some 25 BTCs to cover the frontline on June 21. It now needs only 5 BTC to cover the current line.”

‘Western’ Media Spread Copium To Prolong The War In Ukraine (MoA)

The war in Ukraine is clearly progressing in Russia’s favor. That is why I am appalled by the incompetent descriptions in ‘western’ media of past and current operations in that war. Consider this June 21 map of the Lysichansk cauldron as it was developing. The frontline extended over 125+ kilometers (78 miles).

Fourteen days later and the map looks like this.The frontline has been shortened to 25 kilometer (15 miles). On Sunday the Russia Defense Ministry announced that it troops had ‘liberated’ 184 square kilometer over the last 24 hours.

When I was in the military my tank battalion was expected to operate on a generally five kilometer (3 miles) wide frontline. That was of course just a rule of thumb depending on the terrain and other circumstances. But we can expect that a Russian Battalion Tactical Group (BTC) has similar abilities of frontline coverage. Russia needed some 25 BTCs to cover the frontline on June 21. It now needs only 5 BTC to cover the current line. There were and now are of course additional reserve troops and some BTC are rotated out as rested ones come in just as Russia’s president has ordered them to do: “Shoigu told Putin that “the operation” was completed Sunday after Russian troops overran the city of Lysychansk, the last stronghold of Ukrainian forces in Luhansk. Putin, in turn, said that the military units “that took part in active hostilities and achieved success, victory” in Luhansk “should rest, increase their combat capabilities.”

In a week or two those BTCs which now rest and resupply will be back. They will create a new cauldron around Siversk and maybe Bakhmut, decimate the Ukrainian forces within it to then capture the whole area. Despite this obvious path to progress for the Russian side the Associate Press headlines: “High Cost Of Russia Gains In Ukraine Could Limit New Advance” The only purported evidence of high Russian costs are the assertions of a ‘military analyst in Ukraine’ who claims that some Russian units lost half of their soldiers. I have seen nothing that would support such a claim. The AP writer then adds this: “The limited manpower has forced the Russian commanders to avoid ambitious attempts to encircle large areas in the Donbas, opting for smaller maneuvers and relying on heavy artillery barrages to slowly force the Ukrainians to retreat.”

Please. Look at the above maps. What did Russia just do? It had made an ambitious attempt to encircle a large are in Donbas and succeeded with the effort in just a few days. The Ukrainian army threw everything it had available into the cauldron and lost thousands of men while the Russian army avoided direct men against men fighting to minimize its own casualties.

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Scary dude.

Ukraine’s Ambassador to Germany Touts Nazi War Criminal As A Hero (AT)

In Europe, the past never goes away, and that’s certainly true in Central and Eastern Europe. We’ve already heard about the openly Nazi brigades in the modern Ukraine army. Now, to make it worse, the Ukrainian Ambassador to Germany just touted as one of Ukraine’s greatest freedom fighters Stephan Bandera, who helped murder 800,000 Ukrainian Jews and 40,000-100,000 Poles. That didn’t surprise me at all. It’s what I expected. From the start of Russia’s assault on Ukraine, I’ve been ambivalent. On the one hand, I was horrified as all people of conscience must be when they see a military power brutally attack an innocent civilian population.

On the other hand, having some familiarity with both Ukrainian and Russian history, I knew that (a) this was a fight going back centuries, (b) that we had no business getting involved in a regional war, and (c) that I don’t have particularly warm feelings for either combatant. Both Ukraine and the USSR behaved horribly during WWII, including allying with the Nazis. Ukraine was especially gleeful as it joined the Nazis in slaughtering Jews within its territory. It did so with such vigor that even the Nazis were shocked. Nor does it matter to me that the current President of Ukraine is nominally Jewish. So were the Kapos in the concentration camps and George Soros. The worst antisemites in the world have been Jews (see, e.g., Karl Marx, whose father had him convert as a small boy, and who went on to bake antisemitism into the socialist cake).

That’s why I wasn’t at all surprised to read David P. Goldman’s article about Andrej Melnyk, who insisted during an interview with Germany’s Die Welt that Bandera was nothing more than a freedom fighter: Germany’s leading center-right newspaper Die Welt posted a banner headline at the top of its page last Friday evening just before Shabbat came in here in New York: “[Ukrainian Ambassador to Germany Andrej] Melnyk’s statement trivializes the Holocaust.” In a radio interview last week, Melnyk compared Ukrainian Nazi leader Stephan Bandera to Robin Hood and vehemently denied—in the face of massive historical documentation—that Bandera had helped to murder 800,000 Ukrainian Jews during World War II. The Banderites also helped to murder between 40,000 and 100,000 Poles.

[..] Melnyk said, “Not just for me, but for many, many Ukrainians, he personifies the freedom fighter… and of course a freedom fighter… There are now written laws for those who fight for freedom. Robin Hood is also respected by everyone, and he also did not work according to the law current at the time.” The astonished German interviewer said, “And you admit that he and his men were involved in the murder of 800,000 Jews?” “No, he was not involved,” said Melnyk The interviewer protested, “But it was his army. That’s what his men did. There is no doubt about that.” Melnyk retorted, “You say, ‘No doubt,’ but there is no evidence. He was not convicted.”

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Because of the past. And the future.

Why Doesn’t Africa Support The West In Sanctions War Against Russia? (Lumango)

1. Historical memory of colonisation and the struggle for national liberation: Russia, heir to the Former USSR, supported ideologically, politically, economically, and militarily the national liberation struggles of several African countries, which after the achievement of independence, followed the communist model as the basis of their political, social and economic construction. Even though they later adopted Western capitalism, the mentality of the African cosmos is still of Soviet influence, because it was there that most of them did their military and political training and received economic support to finance the liberation wars to put an end to Western colonisation, with direct and indirect help from Cuba as an intermediary in some cases.

The cold war between the USA and NATO against the USSR led to civil wars in African countries to conquer the spaces of influence. After the fall of the Berlin wall and the resurgence of Russia, Westerners looked at the situation as an absolute victory. Despite this, the African cosmos has not forgotten colonisation, the interference of Western countries in their internal affairs, and the rigged processes of massive indebtedness of their economies as a way of controlling their strategic natural resources.

2. Recent memory of wars at the beginning of the 21st century: Beyond colonial issues, the African cosmos has been following since 2001 the behaviour of the West (US, NATO, and EU) in the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria, sweetened by the Arab Springs, attempted coups in Turkey, Kazakhstan, Pakistan, Tunisia, Egypt, etc., without forgetting the massacre in Rwanda and the war in Somalia and Yemen. These wars and coups have destroyed thousands of human lives, social infrastructure, jobs, etc. It was a catastrophe for the entire continent and nearby territories like South East Asia.

The existing wars in Somalia, Yemen, Nigeria, Mali, Mozambique, DRC, Ethiopia, etc, allow the African cosmos, even those with strong ties to the West like Morocco, for example, not to act frontally against Russia, a fact verified in the recent votes of the UN General Assembly and the Human Rights Council which suspended it. The expulsion of French forces by the military junta in Mali and their replacement by the Russians through the Wagner group, like the construction of a port for the Russian Nave Arms on the Sudanese Red Sea coast, could be a revealing symptom.

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“..disastrous G-7 Summit where the biggest collection of unserious buffoons gathered to ban the sale of Russian gold and contemplate a global price cap on oil..”

China Queues Up to Join the Davos Beatdown (Luongo)

Fungal Joe is going to lift the Trump tariffs on Chinese imports this week to buy votes by hoping inflation moderates. I’m okay with him doing this trying to right the ship. Tariffs are never the answer, just like sanctions. Notice also this has zero to do with monetary policy and everything to do with supply disruptions caused by government diktat. This change by China signals an intention by the CCP to open China back up to tourism and business development that isn’t likely to be reversed. I expect this to be real and for China to make even more little moves like this as the summer drags on and markets churn in the West.

With that change, capital inflow lessens the pressure on both the Hong Kong dollar (HKD) and the Hang Seng while giving China more cover to loosen monetary policy without necessarily raising rates and creates another place for capital to flow now that the ECB has capitulated. Christine Lagarde’s recent statements about fighting inflation being “more art than science” is just saying the quiet parts out loud. But it was what came out of the ECB’s emergency meeting a couple of weeks ago that finally signaled the end for the euro in the minds of investors. Not only is Germany’s industrial base being literally destroyed gleefully by its government, now the ECB is going to sell German debt to buy Italian and Spanish debt to keep from drowning. This is akin to bailing water out of one end of the boat only to throw it in the other end.

Couple these things with the frankly, disastrous G-7 Summit where the biggest collection of unserious buffoons gathered to ban the sale of Russian gold and contemplate a global price cap on oil. … words fail me. Honestly, after this G-7 the rush into the BRICS Alliance as well the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) will be unstoppable. What serious investor with real capital appreciation goals is going to look at this group of committed (and committable) lunatics and think, “Yes! I can trust my money with Boris Johnson, Joe Biden and Ursula Von der Leyen!” No, they are looking at this crap and opening up Tradestation. The fact that Justin Trudeau was even invited should have been your sell signal. While the BRICS were talking about a new trade settlement currency and adding members, the G-7 was talking World War III while getting caught spending more time on photo ops than substantive dialogue.

[..] When you look at the fragility of the EU, the UK, and Canada you realize that the only thing propping up global markets at this point is the hope that the U.S. mid-terms are a complete refutation of the Davos agenda. If that doesn’t happen, if somehow Soros and Davos steal enough seats and put a bunch of RINOs back into Congress and the Senate to freeze any reform of Washington D.C. the collapse of the West will accelerate very quickly.

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“..these ideas have been wrapped in humanitarian language. But in reality, they amount to a call for highly risky U.S.-led military action.”

US-Led Naval Escort To Break Russian Blockade Could Risk Wider War (RS)

Since Russia invaded Ukraine in February, relatively few in the Western commentariat have been willing to call for the United States to engage in direct war against Moscow. The reasons for this caution are obvious — Russia is a nuclear state, and has a military that, its recent underperformance notwithstanding, is still vastly more formidable than any recent target of U.S. military intervention. Yet despite — or perhaps because of — this general resistance to direct U.S. involvement, many commentators and politicians have come up with more underhanded proposals for American military intervention. Most notably, this began with widespread calls for the United States and NATO to establish a “no-fly zone” over Ukraine early in the war.

In spite of its innocuous and legalistic name, the Biden administration soundly rejected this proposal as its enforcement would rather obviously entail shooting down Russian aircraft, which in turn would lead to a wider war. More recently, as the danger of a global food crisis made worse by the loss of grain exports from Ukraine and Russia has increased, new calls have emerged for the United States and allies to use naval power to ensure that Ukrainian grain can safely transit the Black Sea. Similar to demands for a no-fly zone, these ideas have been wrapped in humanitarian language. But in reality, they amount to a call for highly risky U.S.-led military action.

Versions of the proposal have been put forward by Lithuania’s foreign minister, retired U.S. military leaders including admiral James Stavridis, general Wesley Clark, and general Jack Keane, as well as Democratic representative Elissa Slotkin and the editorial boards of the Boston Globe and Wall Street Journal. While these proposals vary in detail, all invoke the rhetoric of humanitarian intervention to justify and legitimize the action. The Wall Street Journal calls for a U.S.-led naval escort to be “planned and pitched as a humanitarian operation.” Stavridis referred to his plan as a “humanitarian grain mission” while Slotkin simply called for a “humanitarian escort.” The Boston Globe called its proposal a “human-rights mission” while the Lithuanian foreign minister deemed it a “non-military humanitarian mission.”

Most strikingly, both the Lithuanian foreign minister and the Wall Street Journal have referred to the nations participating in this hypothetical naval escort as a “coalition of the willing,” and odd choice given that phrase’s association with the U.S. war on Iraq and the Bush administration’s efforts to give a veneer of multilateral legitimacy to its illegal invasion.

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“..just 8 percent said the U.S. should “ensure a defeat of Russia in Ukraine.”

U.S. Should Leave NATO, Marjorie Taylor Greene Says (Celente)

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, the Republican from Georgia, came out against the U.S.’s involvement in the Ukraine War and called on Washington to pull out of the Alliance. “The American people do not want war with Russia, but NATO and our own foolish leaders are dragging us into one,” she said in a tweet. Greene said the U.S. is waging a proxy war with Russia that no country can win and can escalate into a nuclear confrontation. There has been near-universal bipartisan support for sanctions against Russia coupled with military aid to Ukraine to fight off the Russian invasion. But Greene, who is considered a firebrand in the party, has been more critical of Ukraine’s role before the war. She said in March that the West was agitating Russia by “poking the bear” with NATO expansion.

She also did not buy the media’s claim early on in the war that Moscow would lose. She broke from her party and said Russia was “very successful” in its invasion. President Joe Biden has worked to present NATO as a united front for good against Russia. His support for Ukraine has no limit. On Friday, the U.S. said it will send Kyiv an additional $820 million in military aid. The U.S. has given Ukraine some $57 billion since the war started on 24 February. This latest injection will go to additional ammunition for High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS), two National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile Systems (NASAMS), up to 150,000 rounds of 155mm artillery ammunition, and four additional counter-artillery radars.

Despite the support from Congress, war with Russia is not a popular position among Americans. A YouGov poll found that 40 percent say the U.S. should be less militarily engaged in conflicts around the world. The Ukraine War is also not something that is on the mind of everyday Americans. The poll found that 38 percent think Washington should tackle the surging costs of living while just 8 percent said the U.S. should “ensure a defeat of Russia in Ukraine.” Greene posted on Twitter: “The American people do not want war with Russia, but NATO and our own foolish leaders are dragging us into one. A war that no one will win. Escalation over Ukraine, a non-member nation, risking nuclear war is a power-play endangering the entire world. We should pull out of NATO.”

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“That’s why the rotten dogs of war are barking in such a disgusting way.”

Medvedev Warns US Against Pressing For War Crimes Court (AP)

A top Kremlin official warned the U.S. Wednesday that it could face the “wrath of God” if it pursues efforts to help establish an international tribunal to investigate Russia’s action in Ukraine, while the Russian lower house speaker urged Washington to remember that Alaska used to belong to Russia. Dmitry Medvedev, the deputy secretary of Russia’s Security Council chaired by President Vladimir Putin, denounced the U.S. for what he described as its efforts to “spread chaos and destruction across the world for the sake of ‘true democracy.’” “The entire U.S. history since the times of subjugation of the native Indian population represents a series of bloody wars,” Medvedev charged in a long diatribe on his Telegram channel, pointing out the U.S. nuclear bombing of Japan during World War II and the war in Vietnam.


“Was anyone held responsible for those crimes? What tribunal condemned the sea of blood spilled by the U.S. there?” Responding to the U.S.-backed calls for an international tribunal to prosecute the perceived war crimes by Russia in Ukraine, Medvedev rejected it as an attempt by the U.S. “to judge others while staying immune from any trial.” “It won’t work with Russia, they know it well,” Medvedev concluded. “That’s why the rotten dogs of war are barking in such a disgusting way.” “The U.S. and its useless stooges should remember the words of the Bible: Do not judge and you will not be judged … so that the great day of His wrath doesn’t come to their home one day,” Medvedev said, referring to the Apocalypse. He noted that the “idea to punish a country with the largest nuclear potential is absurd and potentially creates the threat to mankind’s existence.”

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“War crimes were duly perpetrated – some of them denounced by an organization led by a sterling journalist who was subsequently subjected to years of psychological torture by the same Empire..”

The Empire Is Not Done Torturing Afghanistan (Escobar)

Once upon a time, in a galaxy not far away, the Empire of Chaos launched the so-called “War on Terror” against an impoverished cemetery of empires at the crossroads of Central and South Asia. In the name of national security, the land of the Afghans was bombed until the Pentagon ran out of targets, as their chief Donald Rumsfeld, addicted to “known unknowns,” complained at the time. Civilian targets, also known as “collateral damage,” were the norm for years. Multitudes had to flee to neighboring nations to find shelter, while tens of thousands were incarcerated for unknown reasons, some even dispatched to an illegal imperial gulag on a tropical island in the Caribbean.

War crimes were duly perpetrated – some of them denounced by an organization led by a sterling journalist who was subsequently subjected to years of psychological torture by the same Empire, obsessed with extraditing him into its own prison dystopia. All the time, the smug, civilized ‘international community’ – shorthand for the collective west – was virtually deaf, dumb, and blind. Afghanistan was occupied by over 40 nations – while repeatedly bombed and droned by the Empire, which suffered no condemnation for its aggression; no package after package of sanctions; no confiscation of hundreds of billions of dollars; no punishment at all. At the peak of its unipolar moment, the Empire could experiment with anything in Afghanistan because impunity was the norm.

Two examples spring to mind: Kandahar, Panjwayi district, March 2012: an imperial soldier kills 16 civilians and then burns their bodies. While in Kunduz, April 2018: a graduation ceremony receives a Hellfire missile greeting, with over 30 civilians killed. The final act of the imperial “non-aggression” against Afghanistan was a drone strike in Kabul that did not hit “multiple suicide bombers” but instead eviscerated a family of 10, including several children. The “imminent threat” in question, identified as an “ISIS facilitator” by US intelligence, was actually an aid worker returning to meet his family. The ‘international community’ duly spewed imperial propaganda for days until serious questions started to be asked.

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Steve Bannon via Robert Malone’s site.

Interview With Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò (Bannon)

YOUR EXCELLENCY, after the psycho-pandemic, we now have the Russian- Ukrainian crisis. Are we in “phase two” of one single project, or can we now consider the Covid farce to be over and concern ourselves with the increase in energy prices?

If in the last two years we had been faced with a true pandemic, caused by a deadly virus for which no other cures existed except for a vaccine, we would be able to think that the emergency was not intended. But this is not what happened: the SARS-CoV-2 virus is nothing but a seasonal flu that could have been cured with existing treatments and effective prevention based on strengthening immune defenses. The prohibition of treatment, the discrediting of the effectiveness of drugs that have been in use for decades, the decision to hospitalize the elderly who became sick in nursing homes and the imposition of an experimental gene treatment that has been demonstrated not only to be ineffective but also harmful and often fatal – all this confirms for us that the pandemic has been planned and managed with the purpose of creating the greatest damage possible. This is a fact that has been established and confirmed by the official data, despite the systematic falsification of that same data. Certainly, those who wanted to manage the pandemic in this way are not disposed now to yield easily, also because there are billionaire interests behind all of it. But what “they” want does not always necessarily happen.

In your opinion, Your Excellency, was the pandemic managed in this way due to inexperience? Or was it due to the corruption of those in positions of control who are in a conflict of interest because they are paid off by the pharmaceutical industry?

This is the second element to consider: the response to the pandemic was the same all over the world, where health authorities slavishly adapted to health protocols that were contrary to the scientific literature and medical evidence, instead following the directives of self-proclaimed “experts,” who have a record of sensational failures, apocalyptic predictions completely divorced from reality, and very grave conflicts of interest. We cannot think that millions of doctors all over the world have lost their basic knowledge of the art of medicine, believing that a flu should be allowed to evolve into pneumonia and then be treated with tachypirin or by placing patients on ventilators. If they have done this, it is due to pressure – even to the point of blackmail – by health authorities over medical personnel, with the help of a scandalous campaign of media terrorism and with the support of Western leaders.

Most of these leaders are members of a lobby – the World Economic Forum – that trained them and placed them at the highest levels of national and international institutions in order to be certain that those who govern would be obedient. Klaus Schwab has publicly boasted, on many occasions, of being able to interfere even with religious leaders. These too are documented facts in all the nations that followed the directives of the WHO and the pharmaceutical companies. There is clearly a single script under a single direction: this demonstrates the existence of a criminal design and the malice of its creators.

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“The only way to achieve the cover is by smashing the price of physical gold by the alchemical production of ‘paper gold’.”

Hambro: BIS, Central Banks Are Rigging Gold Market Using Paper Gold (BStar)

The trigger for Peter Hambro’s article is a recent chart from the US Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), which due to a data reclassification starting in Q1 2022, now shows the massive extent to which bullion banks such as JP Morgan have amassed precious metals derivatives contracts to hold down the gold price.. Hambro describes this manipulation of the gold price using derivatives as a ‘tinder-box’, which ‘disinformation [has] for many years kept the lid on”.

But who, you might ask, is directing this disinformation and this gold price manipulation? According to Hambro’s bombshell, its the BIS in Switzerland, i.e. the central banks’ central bank. Hambro drops the bombshell that: ”since 2018 the Financial Stability Desks at the world’s central banks have followed the Bank for International Settlements’ (BIS) instruction to hide the perception of inflation by rigging the gold market.” But since the central banks ‘need cover’ and ‘cannot be seen’ to be rigging the gold price, Hambro continues: “The only way to achieve the cover is by smashing the price of physical gold by the alchemical production of ‘paper gold’.” If this has now got your attention, read on, since Hambro elaborates:


“With the help of the futures markets and the connivance of the Alchemists, the bullion traders – yes, that includes me, I was Deputy Managing Director of Mocatta & Goldsmid – managed to create an unshakeable perception that ounces of gold credited to an account with a bank or bullion dealer were the same as the real thing. “And much easier, old chap! You don’t have to store or insure it”. The gold credit which Hambro is referring to here is the LBMA’s infamous ‘unallocated gold’, with ‘the futures markets’ being the COMEX.

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WEF.

Lab-Designed GMO “Carbon Capture Plants” to Replace Pastures (Chudov)

The World Economic Forum has a new proposal (archive): engineered crops whose roots DO NOT ROT when the plants die, and “capture carbon”.

Their plan (per article) is as follows: • Make us stop eating meat: “Decreasing the amount of land devoted to livestock will reduce methane emissions” • Plant genetically engineered crops in place of pastures, that would capture carbon. “By using a molecule found in avocado and cantaloupe skins, these engineered roots can better resist decomposition, minimizing carbon escape.” So, after we stop eating meat, they plan on liquidating pastures and planting those genetically engineered “carbon-capturing” plants on the pasture land. The plants would have genetically altered polymer roots (archive) that will not decompose. Think of these roots, for the purposes of discussing decomposition, as being made of plastic polymers, like plastic fibers or ropes.

Thus, the WEF plan goes, these GM plants would grow in former pastures, grow polymer roots, and die every year, BUT THE ROOTS WILL NOT DECOMPOSE. Since the roots do not decompose, the soil will gradually become firmly permeated by a thickening tangle of never-disappearing polymer roots. Those roots would hold CO2 forever. Great right? Except that I have some questions: • Will this pasture soil be basically permanently condemned to hosting these genetically modified plants, since no other plants could penetrate the tangles of plastic-like polymer roots until the jammed soil no longer supports any growth at all?

• What will happen to the diversity of native pasture plants that never evolved to grow on soil which is blockaded by these genetically modified, never-rotting plants? • What will happen to insects such as bees, living off native pasture plants and their pollen? • What will happen to worms, no longer able to move through the soil? • What will happen to the birds, who eat those insects and worms? • What will happen to burrowing animals, who no longer would be able to burrow in the tangles? • What if, like Sars-Cov-2, these soil-clogging, never-rotting plants escape and outcompete wild plants everywhere else? Before you dismiss that, please realize that these plants have to outcompete natural pasture plants to take root in the former pastures.

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“You don’t violate the rules of being a staff aide without consequences, after all.”

Cassidy Hutchinson Broke Every Rule Of Being A DC Aide (Van Buren)

Trump’s movement away from his January 6 speech went badly. The former president wanted to go to the Capitol but his Secret Service detail felt it was unsafe and, in a rare gesture, overruled him. Trump was upset and took it out on the two guys in charge, Tony Ornato and Bobby Engel. Back at the office, the guys dutifully recounted what happened, with Cassie all ears (Rule 5: as staff aide, you’re not well-briefed enough to overhear things and make sense of them). She heard what may have been a bit of macho exaggeration by the guys, Trump grabbing the steering wheel and all, perhaps a bit of bravado as everyone was cooling down. She misunderstood what she heard (Rule 6, it happens), setting the story in The Beast, the massive armored stretch Cadillac limo that is the official presidential ride, when whatever happened happened in a Secret Service SUV per video records.

A Secret Service agent would never misremember an SUV for The Beast but an aide would. When the January 6 Committee came ’round, Cassie thought she had a tale to tell, Trump out of control in the vehicle and later throwing his lunch during a tantrum, his ketchup dripping down the wallpaper. The thing is, Cassie did not see either happen. She was repeating a Secret Service war story in the first instance and imagining the details in the second (she actually saw the ketchup dripping but not the throw). Any first-year law student will know those are examples of hearsay and secondhand information, immediately inadmissible as evidence. The Secret Service is ready to call Cassie a liar; Trump already did.

Cassie also claimed to have written a note about a potential Trump statement meant to quell the rioting. In fact, the note was written by White House attorney Eric Herschmann, according to his spokesman. “All sources with direct knowledge and law enforcement have and will confirm that it was written by Mr. Herschmann.” Rule 1 again: Cassie isn’t important enough to write notes for the president. Cassie thought this was her big break, the staff aide who was going to change history. Never mind that she must have come across the definition of hearsay somewhere in her education; never mind that steering wheel grabbing and plate throwing are neither criminal nor impeachable offenses. She broke all the rules for her few minutes on TV, allowing herself to be used by a committee that knew damn well she had not witnessed anything and that swearing “under oath” to the truth of something you don’t know first-hand is impossible.

That leaves Cassie in violation of another rule, one most people learn on the playground: nobody likes a snitch. Anyone check in on how Monica Lewinsky’s career in Washington went? After a quick round on the late night shows, Cassie will disappear from DC-land. You don’t violate the rules of being a staff aide without consequences, after all.

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Not just childhood vaccines.

The CDC Is Breaking Trust in Childhood Vaccination (Tablet)

On June 18, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) officially recommended Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines for all children between the ages of 6 months and 5 years. While the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is the agency responsible for authorizing emergency use of vaccines, it’s the CDC that crafts subsequent messaging, makes specific recommendations, and prioritizes who can, should, or should not get vaccinated. In her briefing, CDC Director Rochelle Walensky strongly urged all parents of the nearly 20 million American children in this age group to vaccinate them as soon as possible. For some parents, Walensky’s briefing came as a huge relief. But if polling from May is anything to go by, a larger number of parents likely greeted the recommendation with skepticism.

Even before the underwhelming trial results came out, only 18% of surveyed parents reported that they planned to vaccinate their babies and toddlers. Nationally, uptake in minors between the ages of 5 and 11 as of June 22, 2022, was 29% receiving two doses, and 36% receiving one, but vaccine requirements for sports, camps, and other activities likely drove an unknown percentage of vaccination in this age group. There remains, moreover, no solid consensus among physicians about the importance of vaccinating healthy children against COVID-19. A survey from December 2021 indicates that as many as 30%-40% may not be recommending COVID vaccination for children ages 5 to 17, to say nothing of infants. A recent editorial in The Lancet expressed uncertainty about whether the benefits of vaccinating healthy 5- to 11-year-olds outweigh the risks, especially in those with a history of infection.

The gap between the CDC’s enthusiasm for vaccinating all children against COVID and that of parents and health care providers is unlikely to be bridged by approval under Emergency Use Authorization. Approval for the COVID vaccines in infants and toddlers is based on two trials that used changes in antibody levels as an estimate of efficacy, but did not assess protection from severe disease, hospitalization, or multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C), important outcomes that parents worry about. In a Food and Drug Administration (FDA) meeting on June 28, Pfizer Vice President for Viral Vaccines Kena Swanson even acknowledged that “there is no established correlate” between antibody levels and protection from disease.

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“..it has damaged the health of the vast majority of Australians by making them more vulnerable to infection with Covid..”

Vanishing Vaccine Mandates (Spec.au)

This week, with hardly a whisper from its chief public health officers, Australia largely abandoned its vaccine mandates. For the most part, they remain in force only for those working in health and aged care or with those with disabilities. There has been no explanation given as to why unvaccinated workers can now be ‘welcomed back’ into workplaces. There has been no apology to those who lost their jobs for refusing to be jabbed, or who lost their lives, or their good health, following vaccination. So far, 889 deaths have been reported to the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) which may have been caused by vaccination and almost 133,000 people have reported a vaccine injury including more than 140 heart attacks, 360 myocardial infarctions, 500 strokes, 1,400 cases of deep vein thrombosis and 1,500 pulmonary embolisms.

So, why the sudden change in policy? Here’s one possibility. An Israeli study of 5.7 million people, published in the New England Journal of Medicine in June, shows that unvaccinated people who gained immunity through infection, were far better protected from Covid than people who were double vaccinated. And while the study did not have enough cases of severe Covid to be definitive, it showed that unvaccinated people with natural immunity were also better protected from severe Covid. Thus, after more than two years of advising premiers to abandon their pandemic plans and paralyse the entire country until everyone was immunised with experimental vaccines, it seems that our public health officers were wrong.

Oops. Not only has Australia wasted billions of dollars on lockdowns, it has damaged the health of the vast majority of Australians by making them more vulnerable to infection with Covid. Increased vulnerability to infection might explain why, in NSW, teachers who were forced to be double vaccinated to retain their jobs were off sick for a combined 430,351 days in the first six months of this year, an increase of 145,491 days compared to pre-pandemic levels. It might also explain why excess mortality continues to run at a record high. Excess deaths in March were still almost 10 per cent above the historical baseline and deaths for the first three months of the year were 17.5 per cent higher than the historical average.

This spectacular public health failure was undoubtedly exacerbated by the failure to heed the lessons of early treatment of Covid-19. This time last year, on 26 June, NSW entered its long Delta lockdown. At that time, India was just emerging from its Delta spike. On 26 June 2021, Covid deaths in India were 284 per million, while in Australia they were only 35 per million. A year later on 26 June, deaths per million in Australia and India are identical – 376 per million. What happened?

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But yeah, let’s have aother mandate…

TWICE as Many Vaccine Deaths as Covid Deaths in US Households (DS)

More than twice as many Americans have lost a household member to a Covid vaccine injury as have lost one to Covid. That’s the shocking finding of a new poll of 1,500 Americans carried out by the polling company Pollfish. While 3.6% of respondents said someone in their household had died from COVID-19, 7.9% said one had died as a result of Covid vaccination. The poll also found that 8.5% said they had been injured by their vaccination, 5% that they had sought medical help and 3.3% that they had been hospitalised, the same proportion who said that as a result of vaccination they were no longer able to work a full day or at all. These are percentages of all respondents. If we look only at the 74.3% vaccinated with at least one dose then the figures, as a proportion of vaccinated persons, are 11.5% injured, 6.8% needing medical help, 4.5% hospitalised and 4.5% unable to work.


While these figures are self-reported and there is no control group, since the unvaccinated were not asked about adverse events, they are still alarmingly high. The poll also found that, among those who reported a Covid death in their household, more than twice as many reported that it occurred after the person was vaccinated than before (2.4% vs 1.1%). The proportion who said they had contracted Covid before their vaccination (17.5%) was very similar to the proportion who said they contracted it afterwards (15.7%). These figures are not indicative of a highly effective vaccine against either infection or death. The people polled were a randomly selected, representative sample of the U.S. public, of whom 74.3% were vaccinated, so the sample was not biased towards or against the reporting of vaccine problems.

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Hunter

 

 

 

 

Djokovic

 

 

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Jun 242022
 


Georges Seurat A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte 1884

 

Frustration Grows In Ukraine, Casualties Spike, Russia Wins Territory (NBC)
EU Leaders To Grant Ukraine Candidate Status In Blow To Putin (G.)
The Third Incarnation of Russia since 1721 (Batiushka)
German Economic Minister Announces Restart of Coal Power Plants (CTH)
The Supreme Court Hands Down Major Gun Rights Victory (Turley)
Liberal Policies Have Killed Black Communities: Clarence Thomas (NYP)
Joe Biden Flashes Official Cheat Sheet: ‘YOU Take YOUR Seat’ (JTN)
Biden Is Hiding His Plan To Rig The 2022 Midterm Elections (Fed.)
Prosecuting Trump: Being A Jerk Isn’t Criminal (Turley)
The CDC Just Pushed Fake News on Covid Child Mortality
Study Finds mRNA Vaccines Lead To Increase Of Serious Adverse Events (TCS)
Alarming Levels of 29 Chemicals Affecting Fertility Found in Men’s Urine (CHD)
Twitter Is Hiring An Alarming Number Of FBI Agents (MPN)

 

 

 

 

Clare Daly

 

 

 

 

“We are funding the Ukrainian government, if we stop funding everything would collapse, Mr Zelensky would climb on an airplane where he owns a mansion.”
– Colonel Douglas Macgregor.

 

 

 

 

No, no, NBC, this is not the official narrative…

Frustration Grows In Ukraine, Casualties Spike, Russia Wins Territory (NBC)

Russia’s invasion in February prompted a wave of public support for the government of President Volodymyr Zelenskyy as millions of Ukrainians raced to help defend their homeland. Four months later — amid Russian advances and spiking casualties — anger and frustration over the handling of the war is swelling. In interviews with Ukrainians who have family members fighting the invaders, many said they were upset with the military leadership for deploying inexperienced people to the front lines, and at times sending them into battle without as much as a medical or a psychological examination. “I am ready to protest,” said Viktoriia Bilan-Rashchuk, 43, of Kyiv, whose husband, Volodymyr, a theater actor with no previous military experience, is fighting on the eastern front line in Sievierodonetsk.

Last month, she said, she raised money to send his unit protective headphones — standard military equipment used to prevent hearing loss for soldiers firing off rocket systems. “The government isn’t doing enough to support them. The longer this goes on, the more people will become upset,” Bilan-Rashchuk said in Ukrainian, speaking through a translator. Since Russia invaded in February, thousands of Ukrainians with no military background have volunteered to fight. To boost its war efforts, the Ukrainian government has also banned men ages 18 to 60 from leaving the country in case it needs to start a draft. In May, Zelenskyy said the country’s military had 700,000 service members, including women. Through a relentless campaign of appearances, interviews and statements, Zelenskyy has fought to keep morale high among troops and the general public and plead the country’s case to the international community.

But Russian artillery attacks have intensified in the east in recent months, pushing the Ukrainian military death toll to between 100 and 200 soldiers a day in combat, with another 500 injured every day, according to Ukrainian officials, the BBC reported earlier this month. In his daily address June 14, Zelenskyy called the losses “painful” but said Ukrainians “have to hold on.” Despite the high death toll, Ukrainian officials have maintained that troops are well taken care of, with sufficient training, food, equipment and rest. But as the war grinds on, what makes some Ukrainians especially angry is the lack of basic military equipment for those on the front lines. Some military families have been forced to organize donation drives to send medical supplies and military equipment to the front lines.

Read more …

It will be a blow to the EU.

EU Leaders To Grant Ukraine Candidate Status In Blow To Putin (G.)

European leaders are poised to grant Ukraine candidate status, in a historic decision that opens the door to EU membership for the war-torn country and deals a blow to Vladimir Putin. EU leaders meeting in Brussels are expected to approve Ukraine’s candidate status later on Thursday, nearly four months after President Volodymyr Zelenskiy launched his country’s bid to join the bloc in the early days of the Russian invasion. The move from applicant to candidate usually takes years, but the EU has dramatically accelerated the process, amid outrage over the brutality of the unprovoked Russian attack, and to show solidarity with Ukraine’s defenders.


“Ukraine is going through hell for a simple reason: its desire to join the EU,” tweeted the European Commission president, Ursula von der Leyen, on the eve of the summit. The commission last week called on EU leaders to grant Ukraine’s candidate status. “Our opinion acknowledges the immense progress that [Ukrainian] democracy has achieved since the Maidan protests of 2014,” Von der Leyen said. Welcoming the expected positive decision, Zelenskiy said: “This is like going into the light from the darkness.” Ukraine’s foreign minister, Dmytro Kuleba, said candidate status would “draw a line under decades of ambiguity and set it in stone: Ukraine is Europe, not part of the ‘Russian world’”.

Read more …

Great history lesson.

“The break with the West and the ‘obsolete geopolitical illusions’ of its elite’s superiority complex, essentially a form of Nazism, is irreversible.”

The Third Incarnation of Russia since 1721 (Batiushka)

Until the whole of the Ukraine is demilitarised, and it is continually being remilitarised by the West, the liberation cannot stop. Moreover, with potential threats from NATO-armed Poland and Lithuania towards Kaliningrad and from Romania towards Moldova, from arms shipments from Bulgaria, Slovakia, the Czech Lands and the Baltic States, especially from the US puppet-government in Lithuania, with threats from Sweden and Finland to join NATO, where will it stop? The West has to be freed from Nazism/woke liberalism (it is the same thing. As they say: there is nothing so intolerant as liberalism). True, Germany, France and Italy, their economies crippled by US-imposed, anti-Russian sanctions, are showing reason. This is unlike the laughable bluster coming from the militarily feeble Johnson-regime in the UK, which may well be toppled by popular internal discontent and a wave of strikes.

However, it is the economic aspect, with its international dedollarisation, of the Third Incarnation of Russia which is truly world-changing. In the light of the speech of Vladimir Putin at the Saint Petersburg Economic Forum of June 2022, we can say that Russia is returning to its historic path. It wants to leave aside the errors of the past, become a sovereign nation again and no longer be a Western colony. This is unlike the EU, which is clearly just a US vassal, both economically and politically. The future world order will be formed only by strong sovereign states, independent of the dollar and the massive debts of Western countries. These have been caused by their inflationary printing of money that is not based on real commodities such as cereals, oil, gas, minerals, metals, rare earth elements, fertilisers, timber, manufactured goods and gold.

The break with the West and the ‘obsolete geopolitical illusions’ of its elite’s superiority complex, essentially a form of Nazism, is irreversible. Russia will invest in internal economic development in microeconomic and macroeconomic terms, ensuring ‘technological sovereignty’ (which means for instance that Russia already has unique hypersonic missiles), encouraging free enterprise against bureaucracy, improving infrastructure, but also ensuring social justice, fighting against poverty and supporting the family, encouraging far more ‘families to have two, three or more children’. The ideal of social conservatism together with social justice is what is intended. Russia will also help nations in Africa and the Middle East to avoid Western-imposed famine. True, this is an ambitious programme for the future, but this Third Incarnation of Russia is beginning now.

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What a defeat. Trump warned them and they laughed…

German Economic Minister Announces Restart of Coal Power Plants (CTH)

To say the recent remarks from German Economic and Climate Minister Robert Habeck showcase the stupidity of the western sanctions would be an understatement. In a broad energy policy announcement to the German people, Minister Habeck has announced that natural gas is now urgently being stored and built up in order to survive next winter. Additionally, the German parliament is being called into emergency session to re-write climate laws allowing coal-fired electricity power plants to be brought back on-line. Essentially, years of German renewable energy investments and initiatives are now being reversed in order to maintain the commitment to NATO sanctions against Russia.

GERMANY – Minister Robert Habeck […] “The situation on the gas market has deteriorated in recent days. The missing quantities can still be replaced, and the gas storage tanks are still being filled, albeit at high prices. Security of supply is currently guaranteed. But the situation is serious. We are therefore further strengthening precautions and taking additional measures to reduce gas consumption. […] In order to reduce gas consumption, less gas is to be used to produce electricity. Instead, coal-fired power plants will have to be used more. […] That means, to be honest, more coal-fired power plants for a transitional period. That’s bitter, but in this situation it’s almost necessary to reduce gas consumption. We must and we will do everything we can to store as much gas as possible in summer and autumn. The gas storage tanks must be full in winter. That has top priority, ”said Habeck.

In order to unbuckle themselves from dependence on Russian pipelines, Habeck also announced that floating Liquified Natural Gas terminals will have to be created so they can source LNG from other nations. Currently Germany has no port system to offload LNG, they will be purchasing and leasing floating ships to act as LNG terminals. I am reminded of the prior warning to Germany from U.S. President Donald Trump. It’s worth remembering that U.S. media blasted President Trump for being so brutally honest in his NATO remarks where he warned about the danger of Germany being so dependent on Russia for oil and gas.

Read more …

JUSTICE THOMAS: “Nothing in the Second Amendment’s text draws a home/public distinction with respect to the right to keep and bear arms, and the definition of “bear” naturally encompasses public carry.”

The Supreme Court Hands Down Major Gun Rights Victory (Turley)

As predicted, the Supreme Court handed down a momentous opinion in favor of Second Amendment rights today in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Bruen. In what will likely prove one of the most important decisions in his illustrious career as a conservative jurist, Justice Clarence Thomas wrote a 6-3 majority opinion that brought greater clarity to this and future challenges under the Second Amendment. In 2008, the Supreme Court recognized the right to bear arms as an individual right in District of Columbia v. Heller. Two years after Heller, in McDonald v. City of Chicago, the court ruled that this right applied against the states.

This case concerned concealed-carry restrictions under N.Y. Penal Law § 400.00(2)(f) that require a showing of “proper cause.” Lower courts upheld the New York law, but there were ample constitutional concerns over its vague standard, such as showing that you are “of good moral character.” New York wanted to exercise discretion in deciding who needs to carry guns in public while gun owners believe that the law flips the constitutional presumption in favor of such a right. Thomas rejected the two-part analysis used by lower courts and held that the presumption must be in favor of the individual right to possess a handgun in public like other rights in the Bill of Rights. The Court held “consistent with Heller and McDonald, that the Second and Fourteenth Amendments protect an individual’s right to carry a handgun for self-defense outside the home.”

Accordingly, “because the State of New York issues public-carry licenses only when an applicant demonstrates a special need for self-defense, we conclude that the State’s licensing regime violates the Constitution.” New York Gov. Kathy Hochul immediately declared “Shocking, absolutely shocking that they have taken away our right to have reasonable restrictions.” The Claude Rain moment aside, it was shocking that Hochul would be shocked. Many of us were predicting a major loss for over a year and New York, as usual, litigated a bad case and made more bad law for gun control advocates. Gov. Hochul added ““This is New York. We don’t back down.” That may be welcomed news for gun rights advocates given the record in cases like this one in reinforcing Second Amendment rights. As previously discussed, New York has proven a fountain of cases strengthening gun rights.

Read more …

“We didn’t want to be right; we wanted to be wrong. It wasn’t about winning an argument. No, we wanted to lose the argument. We did not want the damage to occur..”

Liberal Policies Have Killed Black Communities: Clarence Thomas (NYP)

Michael Pack: You have talked a little today about how life in the black community has not been improved by many well-intentioned social programs. Do you think, in some sense, it is worse than when you grew up? Clarence Thomas: It’s a disaster. When I grew up, you had family, you didn’t have drugs, you didn’t have gang-banging. You could walk down the street. There was a change in our society. I think that these programs certainly had an impact. Just go back to Savannah and take a look around you. Our worst fears were realized. We didn’t want to be right; we wanted to be wrong. It wasn’t about winning an argument. No, we wanted to lose the argument. We did not want the damage to occur; that’s why we were involved. I don’t particularly like public life; I never wanted to be in public life. I’d like to go to football games.

“I’d like not to make decisions about other people’s lives, but what drags you into it is when you see these principles being undermined, which leads to such destruction. The policies destroy people, and, ultimately, I think, we’re going to destroy the very thing that allows us to have liberty and to have a free society. MP: So the heirs to those movements, like Black Lives Matter, focus on other things: mass incarceration, police brutality. What do you think of the current movements for racial justice? CT: I don’t really follow the movements du jour. I don’t quite understand them. It’s fascinating to me that the radical groups in the sixties, that we all were aware of and fond of back then, like the Black Panthers — that’s kind of mainstream now.

But we knew they were more marginal back then. I don’t know what to say about this. But if you look at some of the things that still are problematic, like bad education, unsafe neighborhoods, drugs, alcohol, breakdown in families, it seems like these are things that we warned about back then. We were told, basically, take a long walk on the short pier. And I understand that. I understand people not wanting to hear an opposing view. But at the same time, we’re not taking ownership of these policies’ having a significant role in the damage that’s been done.

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Guess it’s a good thing he can still read..

Joe Biden Flashes Official Cheat Sheet: ‘YOU Take YOUR Seat’ (JTN)

President Joe Biden on Thursday accidentally displayed an official White House card with specific instructions telling him, “YOU take YOUR seat,” and other similar reminders. Biden, 79, flashed the card to the cameras while at a meeting with wind industry executives. He spoke for nearly eight minutes at the event despite the fact that the sheet also instructed him to speak for two minutes. The “Sequence of Events” sheet also tells him: “YOU enter the Roosevelt Room and say hello to participants.” The card then instructs him to ask AFL-CIO President Liz Shuler a question.


“YOU thank participants,” and “YOU depart,” the instructions conclude. Biden’s mental fitness for office has been under scrutiny since before his election. CNN’s Don Lemon asked White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre about the commander-in-chief’s cognitive abilities earlier this month. “Don, you’re asking me this question, Oh my gosh,” Jean-Pierre told Lemon. “He’s the president of the United States. … This is not a question that we should be even asking,” she responded.

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Susan Rice works in the shadows.

Biden Is Hiding His Plan To Rig The 2022 Midterm Elections (Fed.)

President Biden really does not want the public to know about his federal takeover of election administration. Dozens of members of Congress have repeatedly asked for details, to no avail. Good government groups, members of the media, and private citizens have filed requests under the Freedom of Information Act. Not a single one has been responded to. All signs indicate a concerted effort to keep the public in the dark until at least after the November midterm elections. The lack of transparency and responsiveness is so bad that the Department of Justice and some of its agencies have been repeatedly sued for the information.

When President Biden ordered all 600 federal agencies to “expand citizens’ opportunities to register to vote and to obtain information about, and participate in, the electoral process” on March 7, 2021, Republican politicians, Constitutional scholars, and election integrity specialists began to worry exactly what was up his sleeve. They had good reason. The 2020 election had suffered from widespread and coordinated efforts by Democrat activists and donors to run “Get Out The Vote” operations from inside state and local government election offices, predominantly in the Democrat-leaning areas of swing states. Independent researchers have shown the effect of this takeover of government election offices was extremely partisan and favored Democrats overwhelmingly.

At the time the order was issued, Democrats were also hoping to pass H.R. 1, a continuation of the effort to destabilize elections throughout the country via a federalized takeover of state election administrations. Biden gave each agency 200 days to file their plans for approval by none other than Susan Rice, his hyperpartisan domestic policy advisor. Yet fully nine months after those plans were due, they are all being hidden from the public, even as evidence is emerging that the election operation is in full swing. There are several major problems with Biden’s secret plan, critics say. It’s unethical to tie federal benefits to election activity. It’s unconstitutional to have the federal government take authority that belongs to the states and which Congress has not granted. And, given that all 50 states have different laws and processes governing election administration, it’s a recipe for chaos, confusion, and fraud at a time when election security concerns are particularly fraught.

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“According to The New York Times, the hearings were framed with the intent to use the select committee largely to “recast the midterm message..”

Prosecuting Trump: Being A Jerk Isn’t Criminal (Turley)

“SECVNDINVS CACOR.” When those words were found recently on an ancient stone in Northumberland, England, there was great excitement about what might be revealed about Roman life in the 3rd Century. As it turned out, the painstakingly chiseled words (which were accompanied by the image of a giant phallus) simply said that a guy named Secundinus was … well … human fecal matter. The stone was an impressive effort just to establish for all posterity that Secundinus was a jerk. The House Select Committee investigating the Jan. 6 riot is an equally impressive effort to painstakingly debunk election fraud claims and to show how former President Donald Trump refused to accept his electoral defeat. If the purpose were to proclaim “TRUMPUS CACOR,” it would likely get little argument, given the testimony about elected officials and election workers hiding out in their homes after being called out by name by the then-president.

The hearings have created a lasting, damning record leading up to Jan. 6. Yet, some members of the select committee have claimed they have established clear evidence of criminal acts by Trump. It has to be more than Rep. Liz Cheney’s (R-Wyo.) insistence that the evidence would show Trump was not “an honorable man” on Jan. 6 — an assertion that even some Trump supporters might endorse. That claim is important to avoid confirmation of what was widely reported before the hearings. According to The New York Times, the hearings were framed with the intent to use the select committee largely to “recast the midterm message” and “give [Democrats] a platform for making a broader case about why they deserve to stay in power.” In other words, chiseling out “Trumpus Cacor” before the November election.

The fact is that this evidence is important for Americans to hear and see. Yet, the claims of established crimes this week seemed to run from the visceral to the recreational. On CNN’s “Erin Burnett OutFront,” Harvard law professor Laurence Tribe declared that Trump can now be charged with the attempted murder of former Vice President Mike Pence “without any doubt, beyond a reasonable doubt, beyond any doubt, and the crimes are obvious.” In addition to declaring that he is certain Attorney General Merrick Garland will now charge Trump, Tribe said: “There are other crimes that have been proven. Those are plenty to start with.”

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“..babies and toddlers are 25 times likelier to die of an accident than of Covid.”

The CDC Just Pushed Fake News on Covid Child Mortality

Only because “an internet rando is more knowledgeable and paying closer attention than our top scientists and doctors” do we know that the CDC just publicized false information about the deadliness of Covid-19 to small children. This misinformation, presented at a conference among top experts, went viral and was promoted, notes Substack columnist Matt Shapiro, by dozens of well-known physicians and other media commentators and specialists, including CNN mainstay Dr. Leana Wen and a former surgeon general of the United States. Wen’s promotion of the false claim is still up on Twitter as of 6:45 p.m. on June 22. The CDC displayed a slide at a conference that falsely claimed Covid-19 was the fourth or fifth leading cause of death for all pediatric age groups.

A writer who is publicly known only by the name Kelley immediately saw that the claim was “completely and utterly false.” Among several errors, which are so blatant as to seem like intentional massaging of the numbers, Kelley discovered that all data from a 26-month period were being crammed into one year, and that deaths were attributed to Covid, regardless of whether the death was caused by Covid, if the disease was mentioned on the death certificate. The CDC slide, which cited a pre-publication British study that is now being re-examined, also bumped up the numbers by altering the definition of pediatric (ordinarily understood to mean under 18) to include 18- and 19-year-olds. The danger to children from Covid is very, very low. For instance, babies and toddlers are 25 times likelier to die of an accident than of Covid.

And all-cause pediatric mortality in the pandemic era for young children (up to 12) is 30 percent lower than it was a generation ago, in 1999. All-cause mortality for children over 12 has spiked in the pandemic era because of accidents, drug abuse, and other factors unrelated to disease. Covid barely registers as a cause of death for teens or small children. Writes Shapiro in his Substack column, Marginally Compelling: This is a massive data error, and yet it persisted through a supposedly rigorous data check from 11 authors and was selected by top-tier scientists for their landmark presentation to the most knowledgeable experts in the field. No one in any of these meetings recognized this error. This slide was presented uncritically to the nation’s top doctors and epidemiologists who are in charge of setting the national policy on COVID vaccines for children and no one even noticed it.

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“..mRNA vaccines pose a greater risk than the possibility of catching COVID..”

Study Finds mRNA Vaccines Lead To Increase Of Serious Adverse Events (TCS)

A new study has found that the Pfizer and Moderna mRNA vaccines were associated with “an increased risk of serious adverse events of special interest” that likely outweighs any benefit of taking them. As per the study’s results: “Pfizer and Moderna mRNA COVID-19 vaccines were associated with an increased risk of serious adverse events of special interest, with an absolute risk increase of 10.1 and 15.1 per 10,000 vaccinated over placebo baselines of 17.6 and 42.2 respectively.” “Combined, the mRNA vaccines were associated with an absolute risk increase of serious adverse events of special interest of 12.5 per 10,000. The excess risk of serious adverse events of special interest surpassed the risk reduction for COVID-19 hospitalization relative to the placebo group in both Pfizer and Moderna trials (2.3 and 6.4 per 10,000 participants, respectively).”

The study was undertaken by American researchers at several reputable institutions, including Stanford University, the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy, and the Navarre Health Service. When undertaking the study, researchers analyzed journal publications and trial data on the FDA and Health Canada’s websites to locate serious adverse event results tables. These stemmed from Pfizer and Moderna’s one phase III randomized trials. However, researchers found proper long-term randomization became compromised as many placebo recipients in the trials were eventually offered the actual vaccine. Thus, to preserve randomization and the accuracy of their findings, researchers used the interim datasets that were the basis for emergency authorization in December 2020, approximately four months after trials commenced.

As for what researchers considered a severe adverse event, the following were considered: death; life-threatening at the time of the event; inpatient hospitalization or prolongation of existing hospitalization; persistent or significant disability/incapacity; a congenital anomaly/birth defect; and medically important events, based on medical judgment. Overall, according to the researchers, who received no funding support, the excess risk of serious adverse events found in the study justifies future formal harm-benefit analysis, especially “those that are stratified according to risk of serious COVID-19 outcomes such as hospitalization or death.” Put simply, researchers found that mRNA vaccines pose a greater risk than the possibility of catching COVID and becoming seriously ill or dying.

Read more …

Just add an mRNA vaccine….

Alarming Levels of 29 Chemicals Affecting Fertility Found in Men’s Urine (CHD)

A study published last week in Environment International showed “alarming” amounts of 29 endocrine disruptors in the urine samples of 98 Danish men, EuroNews reported. Endocrine disruptors are chemicals that affect human fertility by disrupting the normal functioning of the endocrine system. The team of researchers, led by Andreas Kortenkamp, Ph.D., professor of molecular toxicity at Brunel University London, conducted a chemical analysis of urine samples from 98 Danish men, ages 18-30. Prior research has shown a number of chemicals to be problematic for male reproductive health, but the new study was the first of its kind to measure the health risk produced by 29 total endocrine disruptors.


The researchers completed their analysis in three steps. First, they measured the amount of nine endocrine disruptors in the urine samples of the 98 men. Second, the researchers used existing data, mostly from the European Food Standards Agency (EFSA), to estimate the men’s likely exposure to 20 other endocrine disruptors. Finally, the team compared these measurements with exposure levels deemed acceptable according to the scientific literature. In doing so, the team was able to generate an overall risk measure — or “hazard index” — for the cocktail of compounds. The authors said they were “astonished” by their findings: The magnitude of the resulting hazard index showed exposure levels more than 100-fold greater than acceptable exposure rates.

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“..there now exists a “revolving door” between the FBI and the areas they are trying to regulate.”

Twitter Is Hiring An Alarming Number Of FBI Agents (MPN)

Twitter has been on a recruitment drive of late, hiring a host of former feds and spies. Studying a number of employment and recruitment websites, MintPress has ascertained that the social media giant has, in recent years, recruited dozens of individuals from the national security state to work in the fields of security, trust, safety and content. Chief amongst these is the Federal Bureau of Investigations. The FBI is generally known as a domestic security and intelligence force. However, it has recently expanded its remit into cyberspace. “The FBI’s investigative authority is the broadest of all federal law enforcement agencies,” the “About” section of its website informs readers. “The FBI has divided its investigations into a number of programs, such as domestic and international terrorism, foreign counterintelligence [and] cyber crime,” it adds.

For example, in 2019, Dawn Burton (the former director of Washington operations for Lockheed Martin) was poached from her job as senior innovation advisor to the director at the FBI to become senior director of strategy and operations for legal, public policy, trust and safety at Twitter. The following year, Karen Walsh went straight from 21 years at the bureau to become director of corporate resilience at the silicon valley giant. Twitter’s deputy general counsel and vice president of legal, Jim Baker, also spent four years at the FBI between 2014 and 2018, where his resumé notes he rose to the role of senior strategic advisor. Meanwhile, Mark Jaroszewski ended his 21-year posting as a supervisory special agent in the Bay Area to take up a position at Twitter, rising to become director of corporate security and risk.

And Douglas Turner spent 14 years as a senior special agent and SWAT Team leader before being recruited to serve in Twitter’s corporate and executive security services. Previously, Turner had also spent seven years as a secret service special agent with the Department of Homeland Security. When asked to comment by MintPress, former FBI agent and whistleblower Coleen Rowley said that she was “not surprised at all” to see FBI agents now working for the very tech companies the agency polices, stating that there now exists a “revolving door” between the FBI and the areas they are trying to regulate. This created a serious conflict of interests in her mind, as many agents have one eye on post-retirement jobs. “The truth is that at the FBI 50% of all the normal conversations that people had were about how you were going to make money after retirement,” she said.

Read more …

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Clarke and Dawe

 

 

 

 

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Jun 022022
 
 June 2, 2022  Posted by at 8:37 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , ,  72 Responses »


Giovanni Bellini The transfiguration c1490

 

Dear Friends, Sorry to Announce a Genocide (Naomi Wolf)
Is Monkeypox a Smokescreen for Global Health Power Grab? (CHD)
CDC Director Issues Alert on Pfizer’s COVID-19 Pill (ET)
The War in Ukraine May Be Impossible to Stop. Blame the US (NYT)
The Secret Ukrainian Military Programs (Thierry Meyssan)
America, Meet Your New Dictator-in-Chief (Whitehead)
Biden Aims to Fight Russia to the Last Ukrainian, Moscow Says (Celente)
Russia And The West Compete To Secure Safe Passage For Ukraine’s Grain (G.)
Milley: Using Military to Open Ukrainian Ports Would Be ‘High Risk’ (Antiwar)
Janet Yellen Pretends She Got It Wrong on Inflation, She Did Not (CTH)
John Durham Lost Because He Treated The FBI As A Dupe (McCarthy)

 

 

 

 

Tucker What is a Woman

 

 

Twitty

 

 

 

 

“reactogenicity”

Dear Friends, Sorry to Announce a Genocide (Naomi Wolf)

I’ve been silent for some weeks. Forgive me. The truth is: I’ve been rendered almost speechless — or the literary equivalent of that — because recently I’ve had the unenviable task of trying to announce to the world that indeed, a genocide — or what I’ve called, clumsily but urgently, a “baby die-off” — is underway. The WarRoom/DailyClout Pfizer Documents Research Volunteers, a group of 3000 highly credentialled doctors, RNs, biostatisticians, medical fraud investigators, lab clinicians and research scientists, have been turning out report after report, as you may know, to tell the world what is in the 55,000 internal Pfizer documents which the FDA had asked a court to keep under wraps for 75 years. By court order, these documents were forcibly disclosed. And our experts are serving humanity by reading through these documents and explaining them in lay terms. You can find all of the Volunteers’ reports on DailyClout.io.

The lies revealed are stunning. The WarRoom/DailyClout Volunteers have confirmed: that Pfizer (and thus the FDA) knew by December 2020 that the MRNA vaccines did not work — that they “waned in efficacy” and presented “vaccine failure.” One side effect of getting vaccinated, as they knew by one month after the mass 2020 rollout, was “COVID.” Pfizer knew in May of 2021 that 35 minors’ hearts had been damaged a week after MRNA injection — but the FDA rolled out the EUA for teens a month later anyway, and parents did not get a press release from the US government about heart harms til August of 2021, after thousands of teens were vaccinated.

Pfizer (and thus the FDA; many of the documents say “FDA: CONFIDENTIAL” at the lower boundary) knew that, contrary to what the highly paid spokesmodels and bought-off physicians were assuring people, the MRNA, spike protein and lipid nanoparticles did not stay in the injection site in the deltoid, but rather went, within 48 hours, into the bloodstream, from there to lodge in the liver, spleen, adrenals, lymph nodes, and, if you are a woman, in the ovaries. Pfizer (and thus the FDA) knew that the Moderna vaccine had 100 mcg of MRNA, lipid nanoparticles and spike protein, which was more than three times the 30 mcg of the adult Pfizer dose; the company’s internal documents show a higher rate of adverse events with the 100 mcg dose, so they stopped experimenting with that amount internally due to its “reactogenicity” — Pfizer’s words — but no one told all of the millions of Americans who all got the first and second 100 mcg Moderna dose, and the boosters.

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A 1971 photo.

Is Monkeypox a Smokescreen for Global Health Power Grab? (CHD)

On May 24, BBC News reported the following on the monkeypox outbreak: “More than 100 cases of the virus — which causes a rash and a fever — have been confirmed in Europe, the Americas and Australia… The virus has now been detected in 16 countries outside Africa… a top EU health official has warned that some groups of people may be more at risk than others… Dr. Ammon suggested that countries should review the availability of the smallpox vaccine which is also effective against monkeypox.” Has the BBC reverted to its past reputation as a balanced reporter of news? That would seem unlikely in the present circumstances. Especially when the BBC is partially funded by the Gates Foundation and it opts to use a Getty Images photo of an unconfirmed monkeypox case that may actually be smallpox.

The BBC News piece contained a powerful image of the arm and leg of a pox-covered child. Driven by concerns that this looks very much like smallpox (check out the UK Health Security Agency images [shown also in Fig 5B] which are closely associated with the Hospital for Tropical Diseases and you’ll get a more representative view of the clinical features of human monkeypox), I was keen to dig deeper. The Getty Images caption tells us: “BONDUA, LIBERIA – UNDATED: In this 1971 Center For Disease Control handout photo, monkeypox-like lesions are shown on the arm and leg of a female child in Bondua, Liberia. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said June 7 the viral disease monkeypox, thought to be spread by prairie dogs, has been detected in the Americas for the first time with about 20 cases reported in Wisconsin, Illinois, and Indiana. (Photo Courtesy of the CDC/Getty Images).”

We’ve been unable to find a place called Bondua in Liberia. There is however a Bondua in Sierra Leone. Is that what the CDC means? Isn’t it a bit like saying the case was reported from London in France — leaving everyone confused about place and country? Not quite, actually, as there is a London in France, just no Bondua in Liberia. You might think I’m splitting hairs. But such details are actually critically important when they’re being communicated to a worldwide audience that’s waiting with bated breath to understand the implications of yet another infectious disease outbreak. Sierra Leone did in fact boast the highest incidence of smallpox in the world between 1967 and 1968 and we’ve unearthed some genuine red flags as to the origin of this CDC/Getty Images photo.

By 1971, it appears smallpox had disappeared from Sierra Leone. And, as an add-on, contrary to what the vaccine PR machine likes to suggest, the historical record does not provide evidence that it was mass vaccination as part of the WHO’s Smallpox Eradication Program that caused infections to decline then disappear from Sierra Leone.

McCullough monkeypox

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Someone shut her up.

CDC Director Issues Alert on Pfizer’s COVID-19 Pill (ET)

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Rochelle Walensky warned that Pfizer’s COVID-19 pill Paxlovid can lead to a rebound in symptoms. “If you take Paxlovid, you might get symptoms again,” Walensky told CBS News on Tuesday. “We haven’t yet seen anybody who has returned with symptoms needing to go to the hospital. So, generally, a milder course.” Another researcher who is not affiliated with the CDC said that he has observed such a scenario. “People who experience rebound are at risk of transmitting to other people, even though they’re outside what people accept as the usual window for being able to transmit,” Dr. Michael Charness of the Veterans Administration Medical Center in Boston told CNN on Tuesday.


After a patient recovers from COVID-19, the aforementioned rebound has occurred between two and eight days later, according to the CDC. The agency, however, told CBS that the benefits of taking Paxlovid outweigh the risks of COVID-19, namely among those who are at a high risk of developing severe symptoms from the virus. About a week ago, the agency issued an alert to health care providers about the rebound, saying that patients who took Paxlovid either test positive for the virus after having tested negative or will experience COVID-19 symptoms. “A brief return of symptoms may be part of the natural history of SARS-CoV-2 infection in some persons, independent of treatment with Paxlovid and regardless of vaccination status,” the federal health agency said at the time.

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The New York Times is gradually shifting the narrative.

The War in Ukraine May Be Impossible to Stop. Blame the US (NYT)

In the Paris daily Le Figaro this month, Henri Guaino, a top adviser to Nicolas Sarkozy when he was president of France, warned that Europe’s countries, under the shortsighted leadership of the United States, were “sleepwalking” into war with Russia. Mr. Guaino was borrowing a metaphor that the historian Christopher Clark used to describe the origins of World War I. Naturally, Mr. Guaino understands that Russia is most directly to blame for the present conflict in Ukraine. It was Russia that massed its troops on the frontier last fall and winter and — having demanded from NATO a number of Ukraine-related security guarantees that NATO rejected — began the shelling and killing on Feb. 24.

But the United States has helped turn this tragic, local and ambiguous conflict into a potential world conflagration. By misunderstanding the war’s logic, Mr. Guaino argues, the West, led by the Biden administration, is giving the conflict a momentum that may be impossible to stop. He is right. In 2014 the United States backed an uprising — in its final stages a violent uprising — against the legitimately elected Ukrainian government of Viktor Yanukovych, which was pro-Russian. (The corruption of Mr. Yanukovych’s government has been much adduced by the rebellion’s defenders, but corruption is a perennial Ukrainian problem, even today.) Russia, in turn, annexed Crimea, a historically Russian-speaking part of Ukraine that since the 18th century had been home to Russia’s Black Sea Fleet.

One can argue about Russian claims to Crimea, but Russians take them seriously. Hundreds of thousands of Russian and Soviet fighters died defending the Crimean city of Sevastopol from European forces during two sieges — one during the Crimean War and one during World War II. In recent years, Russian control of Crimea has seemed to provide a stable regional arrangement: Russia’s European neighbors, at least, have let sleeping dogs lie. But the United States never accepted the arrangement. On Nov. 10, 2021, the United States and Ukraine signed a “charter on strategic partnership” that called for Ukraine to join NATO, condemned “ongoing Russian aggression” and affirmed an “unwavering commitment” to the reintegration of Crimea into Ukraine.

That charter “convinced Russia that it must attack or be attacked,” Mr. Guaino wrote. “It is the ineluctable process of 1914 in all its terrifying purity.” This is a faithful account of the war that President Vladimir Putin has claimed to be fighting. “There were constant supplies of the most modern military equipment,” Mr. Putin said at Russia’s annual Victory Parade on May 9, referring to the foreign arming of Ukraine. “The danger was growing every day.”

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Meyssan has a entire library of articles on the topic here.

The Secret Ukrainian Military Programs (Thierry Meyssan)

Throughout this series of articles, which began a month and a half before the war in Ukraine, I have been developing the idea that the Straussians, the small group of Leo Strauss followers in the US administration, were planning a confrontation against Russia and China. However, in the tenth episode of this series, I related how the Azov regiment became the paramilitary pillar of the Ukrainian Banderists by referring to the visit of Senator John McCain to it in 2016 [1]. However, the latter is not a Straussian, but was advised by Robert Kagan during his presidential election campaign in 2008, a central thinker among the Straussians [2], even though he has always cautiously denied his membership in this sect.

A video, filmed during John McCain’s visit to Ukraine in 2016, has resurfaced. It shows the senator accompanied by his colleague and friend, Senator Lindsey Graham, and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko. The two Americans are traveling on a Senate mission. But McCain is also the president of the IRI (International Republican Institute), the Republican branch of the NED (National Endowment for Democracy). It is known that the IRI has conducted about 100 seminars for the leaders of Ukrainian political parties classified as right-wing, including for the Banderists. The senators are addressing officers of the Azov regiment, the main Banderist paramilitary formation. This should come as no surprise. John McCain has always maintained that the United States should rely on the enemies of its enemies, whoever they may be. Thus, he has publicly claimed responsibility for his contacts with Daesh against the Syrian Arab Republic.

In this video, Senators Lindsey Graham and John McCain assure that the United States will give all the weapons necessary for them to succeed in defeating Russia. This video, I repeat, was recorded six years before the Russian army entered Ukraine. The two senators are investing their interlocutors with a mission. They do not see them as mercenaries who are paid, but as proxies who will fight for the unipolar world to the death. Shortly afterwards, President Poroshenko, who had attended the meeting in battle dress, changed the badge of his secret service, the SBU. It is now an owl holding a sword directed against Russia with the motto “The wise will rule over the stars”. It is clear that the Ukrainian state apparatus was preparing for war against Russia on behalf of the United States.

Three years later, on September 5, 2019, the Rand Corporation organized a meeting in the US House of Representatives to explain its plan: to weaken Russia by forcing it to deploy in Kazakhstan, then in Ukraine and as far as Transnistria. I have explained at length in two previous articles that at the end of the Second World War the United States and the United Kingdom took over many Nazi leaders and Ukrainian Banderists to turn them against the USSR. They mothered these fanatics as soon as the USSR disappeared and used them against Russia. It remained to explore how they armed them.

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“..in the event of a national emergency, the COG directives give unchecked executive, legislative and judicial power to the president..”

America, Meet Your New Dictator-in-Chief (Whitehead)

America, meet your new dictator-in-chief. As the New York Times reports, “Newly disclosed documents have shed a crack of light on secret executive branch plans for apocalyptic scenarios—like the aftermath of a nuclear attack—when the president may activate wartime powers for national security emergencies.” The problem, of course, is that we have become a nation in a permanent state of emergency. Power-hungry and lawless, the government has weaponized one national crisis after another in order to expand its powers and justify all manner of government tyranny in the so-called name of national security.

The seeds of this present madness were sown almost two decades ago when George W. Bush stealthily issued two presidential directives that granted the president the power to unilaterally declare a national emergency, which is loosely defined as “any incident, regardless of location, that results in extraordinary levels of mass casualties, damage, or disruption severely affecting the U.S. population, infrastructure, environment, economy, or government functions.” Comprising the country’s Continuity of Government (COG) plan, these directives (National Security Presidential Directive 51 and Homeland Security Presidential Directive 20) provide a skeletal outline of the actions the president will take in the event of a “national emergency.”

Just what sort of actions the president will take once he declares a national emergency can barely be discerned from the barebones directives. However, one thing is clear: in the event of a national emergency, the COG directives give unchecked executive, legislative and judicial power to the president. The country would then be subjected to martial law by default, and the Constitution and the Bill of Rights would be suspended. Essentially, the president would become a dictator for life. It has happened already. As we have witnessed in recent years, that national emergency can take any form, can be manipulated for any purpose and can be used to justify any end goal—all on the say so of the president.

The emergency powers that we know about which presidents might claim during such states of emergency are vast, ranging from imposing martial law and suspending habeas corpus to shutting down all forms of communications, including implementing an internet kill switch, and restricting travel.

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“There is a risk that such equipment will be placed near Russia’s borders and Ukrainians will be able to strike at Russian cities. Such a situation is unacceptable and intolerable for us..”

Biden Aims to Fight Russia to the Last Ukrainian, Moscow Says (Celente)

Russia blasted the White House of provoking more war after President Joe Biden said that the U.S. will send advanced rocket systems to Ukraine that Moscow has called a “red line.” The Kremlin said the U.S. is adding “fuel to the fire.” “We know that the United States has been purposefully and meticulously adding fuel to the fire,” Dmitry Peskov, the Kremlin spokesman, said, ABC News reported. “The United States pursues the course towards fighting Russia to the last Ukrainian.” Joe Biden wrote an op-ed published in The New York Times late Tuesday that confirmed his decision to provide Ukrainian fighters with advanced rocket systems that can be reportedly outfitted with missiles capable of traveling about 200 miles. Kyiv stands to receive the American High Mobility Artillery Rocket System, or HIMARS, a source told the paper, in a separate article.

A senior administration official said Biden opted not to provide Ukraine with the rockets capable of traveling 200 miles. The system, as it stands now, is capable of striking targets up to 48 miles from the launch site. “Himars units carry one preloaded pod of six 227mm guided missiles (the M270 carries two pods), or one large pod loaded with an Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) tactical missile,” The Guardian reported. Ukrainian fighters could now, technically, line up near the border and fire into Russia. (The paper said the Biden administration was assured that these weapons will not be used to strike Russia and “the administration was comfortable with the assurances.’ But assurances go out the window when you’re surrounded.)

[..] Anatoly Antonov, a top Russian diplomat, on Saturday commented on reports that the Biden administration was considering sending these weapon systems. “There is a risk that such equipment will be placed near Russia’s borders and Ukrainians will be able to strike at Russian cities. Such a situation is unacceptable and intolerable for us,” he told a Russian news outlet, Newsweek reported. He continued, “We are calling for an end to the senseless and extremely risky pumping of weapons into the country. It is important to refrain from threats against us and claims of a military victory for Ukraine.”


Map of Areas that the MQ-1C Gray Eagle Drone can reach when launched from Major Ukrainian Airports

USA is planning to sell Ukraine 4 MQ-1C Gray Eagle Drones which have a range of 400 Km and can fly for over 30+ hours, and can carry up to 8 Hellfire Missiles

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Just lift the sanctions. Solved.

Russia And The West Compete To Secure Safe Passage For Ukraine’s Grain (G.)

In a game of diplomatic cat and mouse, Russia and the west are coming up with similar if sometimes competing ideas for how Ukraine’s badly needed grain can be given safe passage through the Black Sea and on to the world markets. They are also competing to win the battle for world opinion if the plans collapse. Both sides are busy diplomatically across Africa and the Middle East trying to portray their adversary as the culprit for spiralling food and fertiliser prices. Russia and Ukraine export more than a quarter of the world’s wheat, while Russia is the world’s top fertiliser exporter. The World Bank’s Fertiliser Price Index rose nearly 10% in the first quarter of 2022, to an all-time high in nominal terms.

Ukraine’s backlog of 20m tonnes of grain needs to be exported quickly to avoid a further explosion of food prices, and also to preserve the next Ukrainian harvest that currently cannot be sent to already full storage facilities. That is not possible due to the Russian naval blockade of the Black Sea port of Odesa, and Ukrainian floating mines planted to block the port from Russian attack. Russia, in return for lifting the blockade, wants any sanctions on its shipping and fertiliser products lifted. At issue is whether there is a deal to be done. In what is beginning to look like the main plan, the Russian foreign minister, Sergei Lavrov, has agreed to meet the Turkish president Erdogan but not until 8 June, over proposals for Turkey to de-mine Odesa and then escort grain ships through to the Bosphorous along a naval corridor.

Erdogan spoke with Vladimir Putin about the proposal on Monday, and according to the Turkish read-out, Putin was willing to cooperate, on conditions. Turkey, through the 1936 Montreux convention, is arbiter of sea traffic in and out of the Black Sea, and justifies its refusal as a Nato member to impose sanctions on Russia by pointing to this unique role. The Turkish foreign minister, Cavusoglu, said on Tuesday that food security was the most important question: “We are focusing on this. We are planning to establish a centre in Istanbul to observe the corridor.”

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Also known as: They couldn’t do it if they tried.

Milley: Using Military to Open Ukrainian Ports Would Be ‘High Risk’ (Antiwar)

Amid growing calls for naval intervention to open up Ukrainian ports for grain exports, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley said such an operation would amount to a “high risk military operation.” The West is blaming Russian ships for blocking grain exports from leaving Ukrainian ports, but there are other factors, including mines laid by Ukraine. Russia said last week that it cleared mines around Mariupol and that the Azov Sea port is now open to civil vessels. This week, Retired Adm. James Stavridis, a former supreme allied commander of NATO, suggested that naval vessels under the auspice of the UN or NATO could escort convoys of grain ships out of Ukraine.


Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba suggested on Tuesday that Ukraine was pushing for a UN convoy to open its ports. “Ukraine is working on an international UN-led operation with navies of partners ensuring a safe trade route with no security risks,” he wrote on Twitter. Milley said such a plan would be high risk due to the presence of Russian ships and mines in the waters. “You can take the grain out by truck or train, or you can take it out by sea. Right now, the sea lanes are blocked by mines and the Russian navy. In order to open up those sea lanes would require a very significant military effort,” Milley said. “It would be a high-risk military operation that would require significant levels of effort.”

Macgregor

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She follows the game plan.

Janet Yellen Pretends She Got It Wrong on Inflation, She Did Not (CTH)

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has more financial and analytical resources at her fingertips than thousand hedge funds combined. When Secretary Yellen claims today that she “got it wrong” about inflation, what she is doing is continuing the game of pretending; she’s positioning the administration as incompetent, not deliberate. The illusion of incompetence plays into the scheme of hiding the fact the administration is working through a purposeful strategy. In the game of pretending; and under the current circumstances; it is better to be seen as incompetent than recognized as working with malicious intent. This is the illusion behind Joe Biden’s usefulness.


This is also the organized pretending game within DC that too few people will accept or admit. The Treasury Secretary and Federal Reserve Chairman are not making mistakes, they are working on a specific agenda and economic plan. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell was not late to raise interest rates, he waited on purpose. He waited for the political reason of waiting until the triggered 2021 inflation spike cycled through the full calendar year. These are not monetary policy leaders making monetary policy mistakes. These are monetary policy political ideologues, carrying out a political agenda within the U.S. economy. This is part of what National Economic Council Chairman Brian Deese would call the “economic transition.”

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“If you don’t get the bureau’s role right, you’re apt to get the most consequential things wrong..”

John Durham Lost Because He Treated The FBI As A Dupe (McCarthy)

What was the role of the FBI? In the Russiagate probe, in which special counsel John Durham has been tasked with getting to the bottom of the Trump-Russia “collusion” farce, that is the key question. If you don’t get the bureau’s role right, you’re apt to get the most consequential things wrong. Durham has banked his investigation on the premise that the FBI was a victim — an innocent dupe manipulated by the wily Clinton campaign. On Tuesday, this misplaced faith led to the acquittal of Clinton lawyer Michael Sussmann. The irony abounds. A Washington, DC, jury found Sussmann not guilty of making a false statement to the bureau even though Durham’s team convincingly proved the falsity of the statement he made — namely, that in purveying derogatory information about Donald Trump, Sussmann was not representing any client, when in fact he was representing the Hillary Clinton campaign.

Moreover, although the acquittal will encourage Democrats and their legacy media allies in seeking to discredit Durham’s probe, the law enforcement shenanigans uncovered by the trial illustrate that the probe is essential. Nevertheless, the probe will come to naught, and accountability will remain a pipe dream, unless Durham gets the FBI’s role right. As I contended in “Ball of Collusion: The Plot to Rig an Election and Destroy a Presidency,” the outrage of the Trump-Russia “collusion” farce is that the law enforcement and intelligence apparatus of the United States government was put in the service of partisan politics — first to attempt to get Hillary Clinton elected president and, when that failed, to hamstring the Trump administration’s capacity to govern.

That is, what makes Russiagate a uniquely dangerous chapter in modern American history is the willful interference by powerful federal agencies in electoral politics. The real collusion was between the Clinton campaign and the Obama-era executive branch — particularly (but by no means exclusively) the FBI. Durham proceeded on a different theory. The culprits, by his lights, are the Clinton campaign and its operatives. We are to see the FBI not as colluding with the Clinton campaign, but as victimized by the Clinton campaign. The false-statement case against Sussmann is one of three indictments Durham has brought in more than three years of conducting his probe. In each one, the defendant is accused of duping the FBI, not collaborating with the FBI, in an effort to portray Trump as a Kremlin asset.

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May 102022
 
 May 10, 2022  Posted by at 8:47 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , ,  45 Responses »


René Magritte The muscles of the sky 1927

 

Sen. Graham Pushes To Designate Moscow a State Sponsor of Terror (Antiwar)
Dems Ditch COVID Funds To Rush $40 Billion To Ukraine (ZH)
The Rise of the New Normal Reich (CJ Hopkins)
Xi Urges Europe To Promote Russia-Ukraine Peace Talks (ZH)
Rebranding Nazism (Keenan)
Won’t Get Fooled Again (John Tierney)
Germany Admits Covid ‘Vaccine’ 40 Times Deadlier Than Previously Known (RAIR)
Ron Johnson Opens Probe Into CDC Tracking Americans Through Phone Data (JTN)
Bill Gates Wants To Build A Dystopia (Unherd)
Florida At Center Of Bid To Slow Musk’s Purchase Of Twitter (JTN)
Durham Prosecution and Sussmann Defense Outline Trial Witnesses (CTH)
FBI Panicked After Trump Tweet Accusing Obama Of Spying On Campaign (ET)
Got the Heebie-Jeebies? (Jim Kunstler)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Graham boldly called on the US to “take out Putin” and said the Russian leader no longer had an “off-ramp.”

Sen. Graham Pushes To Designate Moscow a State Sponsor of Terror (Antiwar)

Senator Lindsey Graham said the US must pursue an even more aggressive strategy against Russia. While appearing on Fox News Sunday with Brett Baier, the hawkish Senator advocated for a barrage of actions targeting Moscow. Graham promoted a new piece of legislation he co-authored with Senator Richard Blumenthal that calls on the White House to designate Russia as a state sponsor of terrorism. Senator Graham published an op-ed Friday, arguing the designation will allow the US to conduct more legal and economic warfare against Russia. However, Graham does not link Russia to a terrorist group. Rather, he compares the invasion of Ukraine to the Nazi military campaign during World War Two and claims Vladimir Putin is a “megalomaniac wanting to rewrite the map of Europe and recreate the former Russian Empire.”

The Senator also urges the passing of the $33 billion aid bill for Ukraine, prosecuting Putin for war crimes through the International Criminal Court, and putting “more weapons in theater that can target the Russian military offensively.” On Saturday, the Speaker of the Russian State Duma claimed the Western intervention in Ukraine amounted to direct attacks on Russia. “Washington essentially coordinates and develops military operations, thereby directly participating in the hostilities against our country,” Vyacheslav Volodin said.

Baier posed two questions to Graham, asking if he was concerned that increasing military involvement in Ukraine could lead to direct confrontation with Russia. The Senator was dismissive of the potential conflict between nuclear powers saying, “we can’t let him [Putin] win in Ukraine.” Graham boldly called on the US to “take out Putin” and said the Russian leader no longer had an “off-ramp.”

Abrams tanks
https://twitter.com/i/status/1523887945022939136

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A two-party system, you said?

“..Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin sent a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and top House Republican Kevin McCarthy begging for the funds..”

Dems Ditch COVID Funds To Rush $40 Billion To Ukraine (ZH)

Congressional Democrats are rushing forward to whip up $39.8 billion in additional Ukraine aid, after agreeing to drop a a proposal for additional COVID-19 related funding they planned to combine. The package, which tops President Joe Biden’s $33 billion request in April, could receive a House vote as soon as Tuesday, with Senate Democrats indicating that they are prepared to move swiftly according to Reuters. “Biden on April 28 asked Congress for $33 billion to support Ukraine, including more than $20 billion in military assistance. That proposal was a dramatic escalation of U.S. funding for the war with Russia. The new proposal includes an additional $3.4 billion for military aid and $3.4 billion in humanitarian aid, the sources said.” -Reuters

While emergency aid for Ukraine has had bipartisan support for weeks, disputes over domestic funds for pandemic relief, or whether stiffer immigration controls should be included, have delayed the process. “We cannot allow our shipments of assistance to stop while we await further congressional action,” read a statement from President Biden, who called on lawmakers to expedite the funding so he could sign it within the next few days. The urgency comes after Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin sent a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and top House Republican Kevin McCarthy begging for the funds, which they said would run out in two weeks.

“We need your help” wrote Austin and Blinken, who said there was ‘only’ $100 million left from a presidential authorization of weapons (which required no congressional approval). “We expect to exhaust that authority no later than May 19, 2022,” the letter continues. “Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell told reporters he was pleased the Ukraine assistance was decoupled from COVID-19 aid. He had advocated for a “clean” Ukraine bill repeatedly in speeches in the Senate”. -Reuters

Sky News

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“..the official history of the 2020-2021 Covid pandemic is being written and the actual history being memory-holed in real time, right before our eyes.”

The Rise of the New Normal Reich (CJ Hopkins)

I told you this part wasn’t going to be pretty. I didn’t think it would get to the point where the Wall Street Journal would go full Buck Turgidson and call on the United States to “show it can win a nuclear war,” but I wasn’t entirely off the mark either. Back in January (i.e., a million years ago), in The Last Days of the Covidian Cult, I wrote: ” … we are getting dangerously close to the point where GloboCap will need to go full-blown fascist if they want to finish what they started. If that happens, things are going to get very ugly. I know, things are already ugly, but I’m talking a whole different kind of ugly. Think Jonestown, or Hitler’s final days in the bunker, or the last few months of the Manson Family.”

I don’t know about you, but I kind of feel like the threat of global thermonuclear war qualifies as a “different kind of ugly.” And, OK, before you accuse me of exaggerating the danger of the ungodly mess that GloboCap has made in the Ukraine, I’d like to point out that even Thomas Friedman is starting to sound the alarm. Thomas fucking Friedman, folks … a man with no moral conscience whatsoever, who has never met a GloboCap war of aggression that he could not support, and who has justified the gratuitous barbecuing of millions of men, women, and children without so much as a second thought throughout his long and lucrative career as an A-List mouthpiece for the ruling classes. When The Stash gets nervous, I start to get nervous.

Also, there’s the GloboCap Nazi thing. I’m not exactly a hothouse flower, but I have to admit that watching my liberal friends and colleagues go goo-goo for actual swastika-tattooed, Sieg-heiling Nazis has rattled my nerves a little bit. OK … I’m sorry, we’re not allowed to call them “Nazis.” I believe “defenders” is the term du jour. Seriously, here’s an actual screenshot from The Guardian featuring the leader of the neo-Nazi Azov Detachment …

Oh, and meanwhile, as the rough beast slouches toward Bethlehem, and the former fanatical Covidian Cultists turned fanatical Ukrainian Cultists scream for “more weapons” and “more direct engagement,” and revel in their anguish for the wives of neo-Nazis, the official history of the 2020-2021 Covid pandemic is being written and the actual history being memory-holed in real time, right before our eyes.

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Our next big enemy is asking for peace talks. Can’t trust that.

Xi Urges Europe To Promote Russia-Ukraine Peace Talks (ZH)

During a Monday virtual meeting between Chinese President Xi Jinping and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, Xi stressed that Europe must play an active role in promoting peace talks, and in “building a balanced, effective and sustainable European security framework,” according to China’s state media. Xi said “all efforts must be made to avoid the intensification and expansion of the Ukraine conflict, and China welcomes all efforts that are conducive to promoting peace talks,” according to a translation. “China welcomes all efforts of the international community that facilitate the ceasefire and negotiations, the relevant parties should support Russia and Ukraine in reaching peace through negotiations,” the Chinese leader said further.

Since nearly the start of the conflict, Washington has charged that Beijing is providing behind-the-scenes support for Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, something which Chinese officials have consistently denied. China has also come under fire for appearing to provide political cover in its criticisms of NATO which echo the Russian position. Cui Heng, an assistant research fellow from the Center for Russian Studies of East China Normal University, was featured in China’s state-run English daily Global Times as describing Beijing’s perspective that time is running out on Washington’s muscular efforts at arming and propping up Ukrainian forces amid the Russian onslaught. This is why new pressure has been put on America’s European allies to step up and do more, even as China argues they must get serious about negotiations and compromise.

“Cui said the growing pressure and sanctions by the US and its allies showed that the West was anxious to defeat Russia, especially as the Biden administration is facing huge pressure over a weakening domestic economy and hefty financial aid for Ukraine, knowing that getting deeper into the mire of the Russia-Ukraine conflict would harm its domestic midterm election prospects,” GT states. “On the other hand, Wang said with its support for Ukraine stretched to the limit, the US was in urgent need of its allies to demonstrate their commitment to the cause, and help its military sector continue making money from sending weapons to Ukraine,” the report adds.

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“..the perennial Western purveyors of fake news, such as The New York Times, CNN and the BBC, declare themselves to be gatekeepers of truth, integrity and morality. ”

Rebranding Nazism (Keenan)

As a teacher of history, the topic of Nazi Germany is always one which generates numerous questions from students. How were the Nazis able to convince the public to vote for them? How did they convince the people to go along with their fascist agenda and barbaric policies? How was the Holocaust allowed to take place? Despite discussing the role of propaganda and censorship, as well as the fear of opposing the Nazi regime, one still finds students often somewhat bemused. Moreover, many invariably argue that nowadays, due to social media, the Internet, and other methods of communication, the evils of Nazism could never succeed in flourishing again.

However, that is about to change. One only has to look at the manner in which the Azov Battalion, a fully-fledged Ukrainian Nazi militia, with significant influence, has been whitewashed in the space of ten weeks. Whereas prior to February 24th 2022, they were recognised as a neo-Nazi battalion, these fascists are now being portrayed as valiant defenders of an oppressed people, fighting bravely against insurmountable odds. In the past, we have become only too well aware of the role played by the media and big tech in propagandising and manufacturing consent. Whether it’s the mainstream media parroting establishment talking points, Facebook, Twitter and Youtube censoring dissenting views, or Paypal denying media outlets access to their own accounts apparently due to their political stances, Western disinformation full-spectrum dominance appears to be at its zenith.

Yet, the perennial Western purveyors of fake news, such as The New York Times, CNN and the BBC, declare themselves to be gatekeepers of truth, integrity and morality. And this, despite their lies which facilitated the slaughter and deaths of over a million men, women and children, in the invasion and occupation of Iraq. But still it goes on, right up to the present. From the Ghost of Kiev to Snake Island, the Collective Western media has acted as stenographers for the Western and Ukrainian regimes. The examples are too numerous to mention, but the media coverage of the air strike at a railway station in Kramatorsk provided a striking example of the overt and cynical propaganda role the western media has played throughout this conflict.

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“They assumed that the Centers for Disease Control knew how to control disease and that scientists and public-health officials would provide sound scientific guidance about public health. Those were reasonable assumptions. They just turned out to be wrong..”

Won’t Get Fooled Again (John Tierney)

It’s been a two-year-long version of Hell Week, especially in America’s blue states, with Anthony Fauci and Democratic governors playing the role of fraternity presidents humiliating the pledges. Americans obediently donned masks day after day, stood six feet apart, disinfected counters, and obsessively washed their hands while singing “Happy Birthday.” They forsook visits to friends and relatives and followed orders to skip work and church. They forced young children to wear masks on the playground and in the classroom—a form of hazing too extreme even for Europe’s progressive educators. Some Americans refused to submit to these rituals, but their resistance only intensified solidarity among the faithful. The most zealous kept their masks on even after they were vaccinated, even when walking alone outdoors.

The mask became their version of a MAGA hat or a fraternity brother’s ring; some have vowed to keep wearing theirs long after the pandemic. They’ve already called for permanent masking on airplanes, trains, and buses, and they’ll probably clamor for more school closures and lockdown measures during future flu seasons. Facts alone will not be enough to change their minds. To undo the effects of the hazing, we need to ease their cognitive dissonance by showing that they’re not to blame for their decisions. The mental mistakes were not made by citizens who dutifully sacrificed for two years. They assumed that the Centers for Disease Control knew how to control disease and that scientists and public-health officials would provide sound scientific guidance about public health. Those were reasonable assumptions. They just turned out to be wrong.

After a great disaster, the traditional response is to appoint a blue-ribbon panel to investigate it, and a bill has already been introduced in Congress to create a Covid commission. In theory, this could be a worthy public service, allowing experts to sift the evidence impartially and determine which strategies worked, which ones failed, how much needless damage was done—and whom to blame for it. But in practice, which experts would the current Democratic administration or Congress appoint? Presumably, the pillars of the public-health establishment—the same luminaries whose advice was followed so calamitously the past two years.

Aerosols

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Cracks are showing.

Germany Admits Covid ‘Vaccine’ 40 Times Deadlier Than Previously Known (RAIR)

German study: The number of those suffering from serious complications after taking the COVID vaccine is 40 times higher than previously known. Charité in Berlin is carrying out a study on the side effects of receiving corona vaccinations. Professor Harald Matthes is leading the research and is calling for more contact points for those affected. The study “Safety Profile of Covid-19 Vaccines”, which focuses on the effects and side effects of the various vaccines, has been running for a year. Around 40,000 vaccinated people are interviewed at regular intervals throughout Germany. Participation in the study is voluntary and independent of how the vaccines work in the subjects.

One result: eight out of 1,000 vaccinated people struggle with serious side effects. “The number is not surprising,” explains Prof. Dr. Harald Matthes, head of the study: “It corresponds to what is known from other countries such as Sweden, Israel, or Canada. Incidentally, even the manufacturers of the vaccines had already determined similar numbers in their studies.” With conventional vaccines, such as against polio or measles, the number of severe side effects is significantly lower. Serious side effects are symptoms that last for weeks or months and require medical attention. These include muscle and joint pain, heart muscle inflammation, excessive reactions of the immune system, and neurological disorders, i.e., nervous system impairments.

“Most side effects, including severe ones, subside after three to six months; 80% heal. But some last much longer,” reports Professor Matthes. Around 179 million Covid-19 vaccine doses have been administered in Germany so far. “Given around half a million cases with serious side effects after Covid vaccinations in Germany, we doctors have to take action,” emphasizes Prof. Matthes, who, in addition to his work at the Berlin Charité, is on the board of several medical specialist societies and has been systematically examining the effect of medicinal products for years. “We have to come to therapy offers, discuss them openly at congresses and in public without being considered anti-vaccination.”

It is particularly depressing for those affected that their complaints are often not taken seriously. Doctors in private practice would often not associate the symptoms with the vaccinations because they were either not prepared for them or did not want to expose themselves, given the heated political mood. This is also evidenced by the many letters to the head of the study, Professor Matthes. Those affected describe their often months-long search for practical medical help and recognition. In addition, they show that suspected cases are not officially reported. And so, the numbers of severe vaccination reactions at the Paul Ehrlich Institute, at 0.2 reports per 1,000 vaccine doses, are also significantly lower than those in the Charité study.

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CDC=China.

Ron Johnson Opens Probe Into CDC Tracking Americans Through Phone Data (JTN)

Wisconsin Republican Sen. Ron Johnson is investigating the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for tracking millions of Americans during the COVID-19 pandemic. The CDC paid one company $420,000 to access location data for at least 20 million cell phones a day, a Vice Motherboard investigation revealed last week. While the CDC claimed it needed access to the data to fight COVID, documents show the data was used “to support non-COVID-19 programmatic areas and public health priorities.” Johnson criticized the CDC’s phone tracking efforts Monday on “Just the News – Not Noise.” “Just because data exists, doesn’t mean that the government should be using it to track Americans, I would think that that really raises some very serious constitutional issues,” Johnson noted.


In a letter to CDC Director Rochelle Walensky on Thursday, Johnson wrote, “It remains unclear why the CDC tracked millions of Americans during the pandemic and whether it continues to do so. In response to COVID-19, the CDC should have been prioritizing the development of treatments, effective testing, and vaccine safety rather than tracking Americans’ daily lives.” He demanded answers from the CDC on the purchase and use of location data, including whether the agency used other mechanisms to monitor Americans throughout the pandemic. Johnson told editor-in-chief John Solomon, “I think the government is becoming way too big, and way too powerful.”

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“Molnupiravir costs US$17.74 per dose to manufacture, according to an estimate from researchers at Harvard and King’s College London, but is being retailed to the US government for US$712 per course — a profit of 4,000%..”

Bill Gates Wants To Build A Dystopia (Unherd)

Now Gates is tired of all the conspiracies. He asks his critics to judge him by his actions. And the best way to do so is by reading the book: does Gates have anything sensible to say about the best way to combat future pathogenic outbreaks? His model for the future is built on what he feels has worked over the past two years: isolate contacts, close borders, lockdown as quickly as possible, then remove restrictions slowly and cautiously. He cites Dr Anthony Fauci, who Gates says he spoke to once a month during the pandemic: “Not only should you appear to overreact at first, as Tony Fauci said, but you also have to be careful about relaxing all NPIs [non-pharmaceutical interventions] too soon.”

Meanwhile, you should invest enormous sums in boosting global public health systems, vaccine production in poor and rich countries, and fund a Global Pandemic Emergency Response Unit to monitor potential outbreaks. The aim, says Gates, is to vaccinate the entire world — twice if necessary — within six months while lockdown measures restrict the spread of the new pathogen. It all sounds so reasonable, doesn’t it? Or it might do to those who haven’t seen the footage of Shanghai’s lockdown circulating on social media, to those who can work online in relative comfort, or indeed to billionaires with comfortable gardens and libraries in which to while away those six months. With the Gates model, a little translation is in order.

The massive investment required to make this vision happen is a good starting point. Where will it come from? Gates is a well-known philanthropist, and makes much of the more than US$2 billion which the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation have ploughed into fighting Covid-19. Yet this is a small amount compared to the US$6 billion that the US government has invested in the Moderna vaccine alone. As Gates points out, “Most of the world’s greatest talent for translating research into commercial products is in the private sector… It’s the government’s role to invest in the basic research that leads to major innovations, adopt policies that let new ideas flourish.”

Translation: taxpayers invest in developing products through government agencies, and private companies and their shareholders reap the profits. How does this work in practice? Gates does not give what we might call full disclosure. He offers the example of the antiviral Molnupiravir which “Merck and its partners developed”. It was authorised to great fanfare as a Covid treatment in November 2021. Yet Merck did not develop this drug. It was initially developed as a veterinary drug for horses at Emory University, with a US$19 million grant from Fauci’s NIAID and funding from other sectors of the US government. Molnupiravir costs US$17.74 per dose to manufacture, according to an estimate from researchers at Harvard and King’s College London, but is being retailed to the US government for US$712 per course — a profit of 4,000%.

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“..because of an arrangement he reportedly had with Twitter founder Jack Dorsey and Musk’s financial adviser Morgan Stanley, the plaintiffs argue Musk was an “interested stockholder”..”

Florida At Center Of Bid To Slow Musk’s Purchase Of Twitter (JTN)

Florida is once again at the center of a Twitter war, this time by an Orlando pension fund attempting to slow its purchase after Gov. Ron DeSantis said the state was looking into ways it can potentially “hold accountable” Twitter’s board of directors. The city of Orlando’s Police Pension Fund filed a class action lawsuit May 6 in an attempt to block or slow the sale of Twitter. It argues Delaware law prevents billionaire Elon Musk from immediately purchasing Twitter because it alleges he’s “an invested stockholder.” The lawsuit could hold up Musk’s $44 billion approved purchase of Twitter until 2025 if a judge rules in the plaintiffs’ favor.

The $734 million pension fund, the only plaintiff in the lawsuit, filed in Delaware Chancery Court. Twitter, Inc., Parag Agrawal, Mimi Alemayehou, Jack Dorsey, Egon Durban, Martha Lane Fox, Omid Kordestani, Fei-Fei Li, Patrick Pichette, David Rosenblatt, Bret Taylor, Robert Zoellick, and Elon Musk are named as defendants. On April 25, Twitter agreed to Musk’s terms to purchase its entire stock at $54.20 a share in cash, valued at roughly $44 billion. However, the lawsuit alleges the sale “may not lawfully close until 2025 absent approval by the affirmative vote of 66 2/3% of Twitter’s voting stock not ‘owned’ by Musk,” citing Section 203 of Delaware corporate law.

Section 203 prohibits corporations from engaging in any business with any stockholder for at least three years after the date the stockholder owns at least 15% of the corporation’s outstanding stock. Musk owned 9.6% of Twitter’s outstanding voting stock when its board approved the sale. But because of an arrangement he reportedly had with Twitter founder Jack Dorsey and Musk’s financial adviser Morgan Stanley, the plaintiffs argue Musk was an “interested stockholder” representing more than 15%. Dorsey owned 2.4%, and Morgan Stanley 8.8%, at the time of the sale.

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“If Sussmann is found guilty it makes the media culpability look even worse. The media was pushing the same false information to the public that Michael Sussmann was pushing into the FBI.”

Durham Prosecution and Sussmann Defense Outline Trial Witnesses (CTH)

With mostly wins and a few losses in the pre-trial evidentiary hearings for Special Counsel John Durham, the case against Clinton lawyer Michael Sussmann is scheduled for trial next week. Now the witness lists are coming forth. WASHINGTON – […] “Robby Mook, who managed Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign, Clinton campaign attorney Marc Elias and FBI counterintelligence leader Bill Priestap and former top FBI lawyer James Baker are among those called as government witnesses, said prosecutor Andrew DeFilipiis”. Additionally, Laura Seago, a top tech official at research firm Fusion GPS (she has immunity in exchange for testimony); Deborah Fine, a Clinton campaign lawyer; and a CIA official identified as Kevin B are also on the prosecution list.

[…] Defense attorneys unveiled their own high-powered witness list. It includes Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz, former acting Assistant Attorney General Mary McCord and Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times reporter Eric Lichtblau. Depending on preset Perkins Coie leverage and risk exposure, other officials from deep inside the DOJ/FBI small group operation may also be forced to stand as defense witnesses by Sussmann’s team. The lawfare combat teams look interesting. The prosecution calling Marc Elias as a witness looks like a great opportunity for: (1) evidence against him for later use; and/or (2) a perjury trap. The defense planning to call Inspector General Michael Horowitz puts the office of the IG into a suspicious position. Horowitz is a baddie.

Mary McCord is a conniving manipulator for the worst elements of the deep state, so it makes sense she would give testimony to defend Sussmann. McCord was a central figure in how the DOJ National Security Division sought to frame the appearance of the Trump-Russia collusion nonsense, and it was Mary McCord who later coordinated the National Security Council leaks between Alexander Vindman and anonymous CIA whistleblower, Eric Ciaramella. [..] On the prosecution side, Laura Seago (with immunity) has details of the motives inside Fusion GPS by owner/operators Glenn Simpson and Peter Fritsch. Her testimony should be interesting and will likely overlap into other prosecutions if there are any.

Bill Priestap was Peter Strzok’s boss and James Baker was FBI legal counsel. If there was anyone who seemed less willing (slightly) to frame Trump you could make an argument that Priestap and Baker were the least corrupt on the scale of internal corruption. From the perspective of criminal conduct they would be the two FBI insiders less willing to take a fall. Keep in mind the media has a strong vested interest in the Sussmann prosecution. If Sussmann is found guilty it makes the media culpability look even worse. The media was pushing the same false information to the public that Michael Sussmann was pushing into the FBI.

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“The FBI also knew that the Alfa Bank story, which claimed that a Trump server was communicating with a Russian bank—information that had been brought to them by Sussmann—was bogus.”

FBI Panicked After Trump Tweet Accusing Obama Of Spying On Campaign (ET)

Newly released notes taken by high-level Department of Justice (DOJ) officials during a March 6, 2017, meeting with FBI leadership expose some of the lengths the FBI engaged in to cover up its spying on the 2016 campaign of President Donald Trump. The notes were released on May 8 by lawyers representing former Hillary Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann as part of an effort to clear him on charges of having lied to the FBI. The notes, in reality, appear to do little to exonerate Sussmann but do provide quite a bit of information on the FBI. The meeting at which the notes were taken took place just two days after Trump’s March 4, 2017, tweet in which he accused former President Barack Obama of having wiretapped Trump Tower.

Trump’s tweet panicked FBI leadership, who were unsure exactly how much Trump knew about their efforts to tie him up with Russia collusion allegations. What the notes reveal is that in response to the tweet, they tried to cover their tracks. By March 2017, FBI leadership already knew with near-certainty that the Trump–Russia collusion claims were a hoax. They knew that Clinton’s campaign had a plan to vilify Trump by portraying him as a puppet of Putin. The FBI also knew that not a single claim in the so-called Steele dossier—which was the primary source of allegations of Trump–Russia collusion—had checked out. In fact, at that point, the FBI had already spent three days interviewing Steele’s primary source, Igor Danchenko, who disavowed pretty much every claim in Steele’s dossier.

The FBI also knew that the Alfa Bank story, which claimed that a Trump server was communicating with a Russian bank—information that had been brought to them by Sussmann—was bogus. In short, the FBI knew that all the claims of Trump-Russia collusion had proven to be fake. But things took a sudden and dramatic turn on March 4, 2017, when Trump said on Twitter that he knew that Obama had wiretapped Trump Tower, a very public claim of spying that set off alarm bells with both FBI and DOJ leadership. Trump’s tweet so alarmed these DOJ and FBI officials that the topic dominated a meeting two days later that included FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe and the acting U.S. attorney general, Dana Boente.

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“Are they beset by “disinformation” or is it rather the reality of a cratering nation run by idiots and maniacs?”

Got the Heebie-Jeebies? (Jim Kunstler)

Everyone I know is walking around in a baseline state of nervous agitation. Are they beset by “disinformation” or is it rather the reality of a cratering nation run by idiots and maniacs? Everywhere you look, calamities gather speed while the klaxons of alarm blare from all compass points. Got money? Looks like soon it will be worthless. Wondering if Mr. Putin has had enough of “Joe Biden’s” brainless effrontery to lob some hypersonic Big Ones in our collective face? Relying on that retirement account you have no direct control over while the financial markets wobble? Need to fill up the gas tank of your pickup truck twice a week? Can’t find a new condenser to fix the failing fridge? Entertaining rumors of looming famine. Credit cards maxed out?

Sheriff stapling an eviction notice on your door? Beloved younger brother declaring that henceforward they are your sister? Hearing that all those vaxxes and boosters you obediently submitted to might rearrange your DNA? These are just a few of the concerns zinging through the zeitgeist these late days of the republic. You are correct to be anxious about them, so at least don’t worry about worrying. Just understand that the more events spool out in the direction of danger, the more you will be warned against “disinformation.” The good part is that now we know the identity of at least one person who is officially in charge of that: “disinformation expert” Nina Jankowicz (NiJank), new chief of Washington’s Disinformation Governance Board. Whose idea was that, by the way?

Homeland Security Sec’y Alejandro Mayorkis (AlMay) didn’t seem to know anything pertaining to disinformation last week when grilled in committee by Senator Rand Paul (R-KY), including two of the most notorious cases in recent memory: Did the Steele Dossier include Russian disinformation? AlMay said he was “not equipped” to answer that question. Ditto the question — now definitively settled — as to whether Hunter Biden’s laptop stuffed with grifting memoranda was for-real. Of course, both of those matters were labeled previously as disinformation by his new expert hire, NiJank, who, it appears, is similarly unequipped to discuss the particulars at issue. But all this does raise the parallel issue: how much depraved insolence is the public supposed to tolerate from its public servants?

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