Robert Rauschenberg Collection 1954-55
What Happens To Europe When Russia Wins
Europe Cannot Survive Without Russia
Prof. Mattias Desmet: "Everytime you speak out, you become a little bit stronger. As a human being, you start to become more aware of your existence." pic.twitter.com/KaHX7UNA4W
— Wittgenstein (@backtolife_2022) June 5, 2022
While repeating #Turkey's blockage of #Sweden / #Finland NATO bid today, Turkish President #Erdogan lamented Turkey's loss of territories during transition from Ottoman era to Turkish state, accused the West of not keeping promises, and claimed the Western order is collapsing. pic.twitter.com/pGV3lsbfUP
— Abdullah Bozkurt (@abdbozkurt) June 5, 2022
Whoever undertakes to set himself up as a judge of Truth and Knowledge is shipwrecked by the laughter of the gods.
The US doesn’t want it…
The trouble with the seemingly bottomless pleas for more armaments for Ukraine is that with them a viable end to the war falls ever further out of reach. Though many American foreign-policy analysts and pundits believe the only acceptable outcome of the war is full freedom for Ukraine and a total repulsion of Russian forces, this remains highly unlikely and may put the world in further danger. That is Kissinger’s contention, and it’s one that must be heeded. If the American-backed military gains for Ukraine are fleeting and merely increase the odds of a more ruinous collision between NATO and Russia, should Ukraine keep receiving American missiles? This is the dilemma both Kissinger and Chomsky confront.
The economic shocks of the war cannot be dismissed any longer. Skyrocketing energy prices across the globe are destabilizing for affluent and precarious nations alike. Mass starvation looms — Russia is trapping 20 million tons of grain in Ukraine, which has been one of the world’s great breadbaskets. Ordinarily, Russia and Ukraine account for one-quarter of the grain traded internationally. Even before the war, strains on the global food supply were emerging with the pandemic and ongoing droughts in North America and the Horn of Africa. Wheat prices are now surging. And there is the faint possibility, always to be taken seriously, of nuclear conflict.
Kissinger is one of a vanishing number of men who worked in American government when nuclear war was a much-discussed existential threat to be averted at all costs. Russia is an enormous country that is going to play a role in global affairs for the rest of this century, just as it did in the past one. This fact cannot be hand-waved away, nor can the reality that Russia has stockpiled more nuclear weapons than any other nation in the world. Putin’s Russia is more unsettling than the Soviet Union because it is far weaker and dominated by fewer men; it simply has less to lose. As in the defeated Germany after the First World War, grievance culture might take hold, this time in a nation with enough nuclear warheads pointed outward to annihilate every large city on Earth.
“The Horsemen of the Apocalypse are already on their way and all hope now is with Lord God the Almighty.”
One of President Putin’s closest allies has warned that Moscow could target western cities if Ukraine uses rocket systems supplied by the United States to carry out strikes on Russian territory. Washington said this week that it was sending M142 high-mobility artillery rocket systems to Ukraine, which will more than double its army’s artillery range and allow it to strike targets 50 miles away. “If, God forbid, these weapons are used against Russian territory then our armed forces will have no other choice but to strike decision-making centres,” said Dmitry Medvedev, a former prime minister under Putin who is deputy chairman of Russia’s national security council. “Of course, it needs to be understood that the final decision-making centres in this case, unfortunately, are not located on the territory of Kyiv,” he said in an interview with Al Jazeera.
Officials in Moscow have accused Nato of using the war in Ukraine to wage a proxy war against Russia. Medvedev, who also served a single term as president from 2008 to 2012 but was widely viewed as Putin’s puppet, was once seen as a liberalising force in Russia but has transformed in recent months into one of Moscow’s biggest hawks. He also warned that the fighting in Ukraine was pushing the world dangerously close to nuclear Armageddon, saying: “The Horsemen of the Apocalypse are already on their way and all hope now is with Lord God the Almighty.” Kremlin-controlled state television has said on a number of occasions that Moscow could launch nuclear missiles against western countries, including Britain, if the war in Ukraine turns against Russia.
Long range rockets
— Juan Sinmiedo (@Youblacksoul) June 5, 2022
“Zelensky’s arming of civilians to help fight the invasion rendered the entire civilian population a military target under international law..”
I can attest as a woman living in Japan nearly four decades that I could not watch the news without feeling that I would be a monster if I didn’t have any sympathy at all for the victims, even if I considered it all unverified and mostly likely misleading. I can’t tolerate such a level of cognitive dissonance, and just flee after a few minutes. My husband and his brother, by contrast, can continue watching with no emotional involvement, just out of curiosity to see how far the authorities will take such obvious propaganda. In contrast to the successful emotional man-handling of the women, virtually all of the men I know in Japan quickly saw through the deception and many, in fact, took umbrage at it.
It was men who told me they were sick of hearing constantly about Ukraine. They pointed out how odd the unilateral condemnation of Russia was, considering this was the same sort of action America was constantly engaging in with other small impoverished countries far away that the news otherwise had no interest in. They recognized the attempted manipulation, and what they and an increasing number of women began to see behind it was an anticipated new attempt to rewrite Japan’s constitution enabling it to engage in military actions overseas. In addition, the talk shows never really managed to shut out pro-Russian views entirely. Prior to the SMO, there had been some positive coverage of Russia in the Japanese media. The knowledge people possessed from before the conflict could not be erased.
According to my husband, one commentator noted that Zelensky’s arming of civilians to help fight the invasion rendered the entire civilian population a military target under international law. The public’s perceptions of Zelensky’s role in the conflict changed. The Minsk Accords were brought up in one daytime program, catching one of the young “experts” off-guard. The general perception gradually formed among the public that there was indeed another side to this story. Russian signage was restored at train stations in April. I have not heard recently of on-line harassment of Russians (or anyone suspected of being Russian, including Ukrainians), which was occurring during the first few weeks of the SMO. Prior to Biden’s recent appearance in Japan, the propaganda increased, but seems to have subsided since then somewhat, though the other day they aired a documentary on what a dictator Putin is.
“..the global community will work together to ensure justice is served.” Right, with another probe in Mariupol.
The UK Ministry of Justice has announced a second tranche of support for the international criminal court’s (ICC) investigations into war crimes in Ukraine, including the deployment of a specialist legal and police team. Karim Khan QC, the court’s chief prosecutor, will be in London on Monday to provide an update on the progress of the investigation. During this time, deputy prime minister Dominic Raab will present further support to the independent investigation on top of the £1m of funding provided earlier this year. The package includes a police liaison officer based in The Hague to lead on information sharing between the UK and the ICC, and seven legal experts to support the ICC with expertise in international criminal law and the handling of evidence to be presented to court.
The UK will also provide two police officers with expertise in the collection of intelligence through publicly available data sources, ongoing defence analysis and monitoring of events in Ukraine, as well as war crimes investigation training to Ukrainian police on behalf of the ICC, in collaboration with Norwegian police. “The UK has responded swiftly to a request from the international criminal court for more police and lawyers to aid their investigation into Russian war crimes in Ukraine,” Raab said. “Russian forces should know that they will be held to account for their actions and the global community will work together to ensure justice is served.” The attorney general, Suella Braverman, added: “Following my appointment of war crimes expert Sir Howard Morrison as an independent adviser to the Ukrainian prosecutor general’s office, I am determined that British expertise continues to be available to our friends in Ukraine in their search for justice.
Hmmm it doesn’t mention Guiado…
The U.S. will reportedly resume allowing Venezuelan oil to flow to Europe, people familiar with the matter told Reuters. The outlet on Sunday reported that Eni SpA and Repsol SA, which are Italian and Spanish respectively, could ship Venezuelan oil to Europe as early as next month after the Biden administration authorized the plan last month. People familiar with the matter told Reuters that the oil “has to go to Europe. It cannot be resold elsewhere.” The volume of oil Eni and Repsol will receive is expected to be fairly small with a minimal impact on oil prices around the world. The Biden administration’s reported permission to allow for the use of Venzeluan oil comes as part of a push to rely less on Russian oil and redirect Venezuela’s shipments from China, Reuters added.
In May, 18 progressive House Democrats wrote to Biden asking that he lift all sanctions against Venezuela that “exacerbate the humanitarian situation” amid President Nicolás Maduro’s alleged human rights violations. But earlier this year, talks of lifting those sanctions and engaging more with Venezuela about oil were criticized by lawmakers. Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) said a deal with Maduro for the purchase of Venezuelan oil “risks perpetuating a humanitarian crisis that has destabilized Latin America and the Caribbean for an entire generation.”
It’s already a flop.
“The Open Veins of Latin America: Five Centuries of the Pillage of a Continent.”
When leaders gather this week in Los Angeles at the Summit of the Americas, the focus is likely to veer from common policy changes — migration, climate change and galloping inflation — and instead shift to something Hollywood thrives on: the drama of the red carpet. With Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador topping a list of leaders threatening to stay home to protest the U.S.’ exclusion of authoritarian leaders from Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela, experts say the event could turn into a embarrassment for U.S. President Joe Biden. Even some progressive Democrats have criticized the administration for bowing to pressure from exiles in the swing state of Florida and barring communist Cuba, which attended the last two summits.
“The real question is why the Biden administration didn’t do its homework,” said Jorge Castañeda, a former Mexican foreign minister who now teaches at New York University. While the Biden administration insists the president in Los Angeles will outline his vision for a “sustainable, resilient, and equitable future” for the hemisphere, Castañeda said it’s clear from the last-minute wrangling over the guest list that Latin America is not a priority for the U.S. president. “This ambitious agenda, no one knows exactly what it is, other than a series of bromides,” he said. The U.S. is hosting the summit for the first time since its launch in 1994, in Miami, as part of an effort to galvanize support for a free trade agreement stretching from Alaska to Patagonia.
But that goal was abandoned more than 15 years ago amid a rise in leftist politics in the region. With China’s influence expanding, most nations have come to expect — and need — less from Washington. As a result, the premier forum for regional cooperation has languished, at times turning into a stage for airing historical grievances, like when the late Venezuelan leader Hugo Chávez at the 2009 summit in Trinidad & Tobago gave President Barack Obama a copy of Eduardo Galeano’s classic tract, “The Open Veins of Latin America: Five Centuries of the Pillage of a Continent.”
“..if these energy prices stay high in the long run then they will entirely work their way into food prices.”
Americans are changing their shopping habits because of soaring food prices. And disruptions in the international farming community have some worried about the food supply heading into 2023. The BMO Real Financial Progress Index, a quarterly survey from BMO and Ipsos, shows that 42% of surveyed adults “are changing how they shop for groceries,” including “opting for cheaper items, avoiding brand names and buying only the essentials.” The report found “46% are either dining out less or consciously spending less when dining out.” Record high energy costs and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine have been major factors in rising food prices.
Gas prices hit new record highs every day in the past week. According to AAA, the national average gas price rose to $4.85 on Sunday, with diesel gas prices at their own record of $5.64 per gallon. That added cost makes it more expensive for farmers to operate equipment, transport goods to market, and more. “By the economics textbook, higher costs work themselves up through the supply side of the market and raise prices,” said Roger Cryan, chief economist at the American Farm Bureau Federation. “The prices are especially high right now because of the sudden lack of access to Black Sea grain, but if these energy prices stay high in the long run then they will entirely work their way into food prices.”
Ukraine is a major food exporter, and it also is an exporter of several key chemicals used to make fertilizer. “Ukraine is one of the largest wheat producers and suppliers, so wheat is definitely under pressure,” said Maksym Chepeliev, an agriculture professor at Purdue University and a Research Economist at the Center for Global Trade Analysis. “Corn as well, because apart from the fact that Ukraine is a large corn producer and supplier that needs to be replaced, there have been issues with some droughts in South America and also the U.S. that kind of reduced the corn supply, and China is demanding more corn … and that is … pushing the global corn market.”
Saw the ABC Spain report a few days ago, but it was behind a paywall. Pompeo won’t show up, but with the extradition still in the air, this might be a useful twist.
In a surprising development surrounding WikiLeaks and the fate of Julian Assange, who is still in London’s Belmarsh prison awaiting awaiting a decision from UK Home Secretary Priti Patel on extradition to the US, a Spanish court has summoned former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to testify on whether the CIA planned to assassinate WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. Pompeo was head of the agency during the time period that a bombshell Yahoo News investigative report last year revealed that the CIA allegedly plotted to kidnap or even kill Assange, following Washington outrage that WikiLeaks made public a batch of documents exposing the agency’s ultra-secretive hacking tools known as Vault 7.
At the time, the Yahoo report quoted a former Trump national security official who described that Pompeo and other top intel officials “were completely detached from reality because they were so embarrassed about Vault 7 … they were seeing blood.” As ABC Spain reports, the summoning comes after filings by Assange’s legal team related to his ongoing proceedings with the UK government: “According to legal sources consulted by ABC, Pompeo has been summoned this June, although he may appear by videoconference. The same resolution agrees to call William Evanina, a former key US counterintelligence official who reportedly made statements supporting that theory. Pedraz has made this decision after the prosecutor Carlos Bautista reported in favor of the petition filed by the lawyer Aitor Martínez who, together with Baltasar Garzón, defends Assange.”
The Spanish report continues, “Separately, Spain’s National Court has been probing a Spanish security firm that may have spied on Assange for the CIA while providing security for the Ecuadorean Embassy in London.” “National High Court Judge Santiago Pedraz agreed to summon Pompeo and former U.S. counterintelligence official William Evanina as witnesses to explain whether a plot was drawn up,” it adds. Pompeo has yet to issue comment on the ruling or whether he plans to appear, which isn’t likely, given current or former top US intelligence officials do not subject themselves to legal examinations on classified intelligence matters.
“The leadership at the FBI has played a prominent role in the American people losing faith in that organization..”
Former Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe on Sunday denounced the acquittal of former Hillary Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann, calling the verdict “contrary to the evidence.” In an interview on Fox News’ “Sunday Morning Futures,” Ratcliffe lamented the judicial decision to not allow certain evidence in the case. “The verdict was disappointing because it was contrary to the evidence,” he said. “Michael Sussmann’s own text messages confirmed exactly what the government said, which is that he claimed to just be a private citizen coming in when he had a story about a connection between the Trump campaign server and a Russian bank, which was clearly false, when the evidence clearly showed that he was acting on behalf of the Clinton campaign.”
“It wasn’t a judge verdict,” he added, because “the judge in this case wouldn’t allow certain evidence of the Clinton conspiracy to be included.” But Ratcliffe said the “bigger picture” is that though special counsel John Durham’s prosecution may have lost this battle … “they’re clearly winning the war.” “The most powerful testimony to come out of this was admissions by the Clinton campaign about the fact that the Trump-Russia collusion narrative was, in fact, approved by Hillary Clinton,” Ratcliffe said. According to Ratcliffe, some people in the FBI misled the American people for political reasons. “The leadership at the FBI has played a prominent role in the American people losing faith in that organization,” he declared. “Our law enforcement community was briefed on the fact that it was Hillary Clinton that created this entire Trump-Russia collusion narrative and that the FBI knew that from the beginning,” he said
“When that is the purpose of what your special counsel is to be, and you leave that out altogether, it shows that there was a deliberate effort here, unfortunately, on behalf of some folks in our law enforcement community to mislead the American people for political reasons,” he said. Ratcliffe railed that from the start, “the FBI and everyone in law enforcement that then became part of the Mueller investigation were aware from day one with that this whole Trump-Russia investigation that was playing out over years to the American people was created by the Hillary Clinton campaign.”
He said numerous times he had “ample evidence” of collusion. He didn’t. But now he’s back as if that never happened.
Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), a member of the committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, uprising, hinted on Sunday there are more revelations in store about the events that led up to the attack on the U.S. Capitol, saying a “comprehensive narrative” would be mapped for the first time when the panel holds its first public hearing this week. Schiff told host Margaret Brennan on CBS’s “Face the Nation” that Americans have already seen “a number of bombshells” come out of the panel’s investigation — but said more surprises would be revealed on Thursday, including a narrative of the events leading up to Jan. 6. “Our goal is to present the narrative of what happened in this country, how close we came to losing our democracy, what led to the violence,” Schiff said.
“Americans I think know a great deal already — they have seen a number of bombshells already [and] there’s a great deal they haven’t seen. But perhaps the most important is the public has not seen it woven together, how one thing led to another.” The Jan. 6 panel will hold its first public hearing at 8 p.m. on Thursday. It’s unclear exactly who will be testifying publicly, as the committee has not released the names of any witnesses. Chairperson Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) has said up to eight public hearings could be held throughout June as the panel presents the findings of its investigation, which included more than 1,000 interviews. The Jan. 6 insurrection saw a mob of pro-Trump supporters storm the U.S. Capitol in an attempt to overturn certification of the 2020 election, which Trump and his allies and supporters continue to claim without evidence was stolen.
“The case recently swung in Berenson’s favor when U.S. District Judge William Alsup greenlit his breach-of-contract claim against Twitter..”
Former New York Times reporter Alex Berenson and Twitter are in active settlement talks to resolve his censorship lawsuit against the company, which deplatformed him following a tweet that said COVID-19 vaccines don’t stop infection or transmission, a view that has long been confirmed by global data and reiterated by Bill Gates this year. In a joint filing Thursday, the parties asked the U.S. District Court in San Francisco for a “modest extension of the discovery deadlines” in the case so they can “focus their efforts on resolution,” a request granted Friday. They had mediation sessions May 27 and 31, the filing says.
A previous order required Berenson to produce certain documents by Monday, which has now been pushed off until June 16, and other deadlines were also moved back 10 days. The case recently swung in Berenson’s favor when U.S. District Judge William Alsup greenlit his breach-of-contract claim against Twitter, saying he plausibly alleged the company “fail[ed] to abide by its own five-strike policy and its specific commitments” made by a PR executive directly to Berenson before his first strike. Berenson shared the new filing with subscribers to his newsletter Thursday, saying he would let it “speak for itself.”
“Neither agency requested additional information.”
Elon Musk’s $44 billion acquisition of Twitter is a step closer to completion as the regulatory waiting period under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976 officially expired on Friday. The HSR requires companies to give advance notice of transactions above a certain threshold to the Federal Trade Commission and Department of Justice. The agencies have 30 days from the notification to pursue an initial investigation of the transaction to determine whether additional information is needed to assess its legality. Neither agency requested additional information. While the expiration of the HSR waiting period has been satisfied, Twitter emphasized that the deal’s completion is still subject to remaining customary closing conditions, including shareholder and remaining applicable regulatory approvals.
The deal, which would take Twitter private at $54.20 per share, is expected to close in 2022. The latest development comes after Musk said the deal would be temporarily put on hold as he awaits calculations supporting the social media giant’s internal estimate that spam and fake accounts make up less than 5% of the platform’s users. Musk, who has vowed to crack down on Twitter’s spam bots, has said he believes at least 20% of its users are spam or fake accounts and that he would be willing to renegotiate the deal for a lower price proportionate to the total percentage.
“Hey, why are they already writing my suicide story!?”
It came the day before he tweeted a meme that said, “Things I’ll never see in my life,” along with photos of a fire-breathing dragon, a unicorn, a dinosaur, and the Jeffrey Epstein/Ghislaine Maxwell client list. “Only thing more remarkable than DOJ not leaking the list is that no one in the media cares. Doesn’t that seem odd?” he added. A Twitter user posted a picture of Musk with Maxwell to which Musk replied: “Ah yes, Maxwell photobombing me at a @VanityFair Oscars party – you should ask them why they invited her.” “The same people who push this photo say nothing about prominent people who actually went to his island a dozen times. Also very strange…” he added.
It isn’t the first time Musk mentioned Maxwell’s client list. A Twitter user asked: “It says it all that we heard more about Will Smith slapping Chris Rock than we heard about Ghislaine Maxwell’s trial. It is also “interesting” that the account tracking the Ghislaine Maxwell’s trial got banned when it gained traction. Lovely people indeed…” Musk then quipped: “Where is their ‘client’ list? Shouldn’t at least one of them go down!?” Shortly thereafter he added: “Hey, why are they already writing my suicide story!?”
I think fasting may be crucial.
Remarkably, as of 2022, most people have still never heard of insulin resistance. This is true even though it is the single most common chronic health condition in the U.S. and a major contributor to six of the top eight causes of death in 2021 (heart disease, cancer, COVID, stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, and diabetes). How common can insulin resistance be if you’ve never heard of it? Extremely common; an estimated 88 percent of U.S. adults in 2018 had this condition (1). Briefly stated, insulin resistance is a process in which cells become less responsive to a hormone called insulin. Because insulin receptors are found in every cell in the body—muscle, fat, organs, bone, skin—how well cells respond to insulin signals is critical to how we feel and function.
One of insulin’s main functions is to help the body control blood sugar levels by putting excess blood sugar into cells for storage. This process occurs every time you eat. Because insulin is so crucial to blood sugar regulation, even people who have heard of insulin or insulin resistance mostly think of it as a problem for diabetics. Indeed, this is partly true. In people with diabetes, their cells have become so resistant to insulin that insulin can no longer keep their blood sugar levels in a healthy range. As a result, blood sugar levels run high, with catastrophic consequences if left unchecked. Unfortunately, even when a person with diabetes receives treatment, this treatment doesn’t necessarily improve their underlying insulin resistance; a person can lower blood sugar levels while remaining insulin resistant, giving them a false sense of security about their health.
Insulin affects every organ in the body—including the brain. When insulin levels become chronically elevated, brain tissue also becomes insulin resistant. The consequences of this are numerous and severe. For example, although the science is not yet strong enough to make it an official diagnosis, many researchers now refer to Alzheimer’s disease, the progressive and fatal form of dementia associated with severe memory loss, as “Type 3 diabetes” in reference to the effects possibly being the result of long-term insulin resistance in the brain.
[..] The rapidly evolving science on insulin resistance and brain function now also suggests that effects could extend beyond dementia to include depression. Depression is a condition defined by a heterogeneous collection of symptoms. Some of the classic symptoms of depression—such as sadness, guilt, suicidality, and poor concentration—are believed to result from dysfunction in a neurotransmitter called serotonin. Popular antidepressants such as Prozac work by improving serotonin function in the brain. In contrast, other common symptoms of depression such as anhedonia (a lack of motivation or interest), fatigue, motor impairment, and loss of sex drive are more closely linked to dysfunction in other neurotransmitters such as dopamine and norepinephrine. This is another area where insulin resistance becomes especially relevant.
Vitamin D reduces autoimmune disease
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