Jul 312021
 


Vincent van Gogh Weeping woman 1883

 

UK Gov’t Panel: Covid Mutation With 35% Death Rate ‘Realistic Possibility’ (RT)
CDC Releases Study Showing 3/4 Delta Cases Are Among The Vaccinated (RT)
White House Covid-19 Spokesman Yells At Media For Quoting CDC Documents (RT)
Fauci *ADMITS* I Was Right In Spring of 2020 (Denninger)
Had Covid? You’ll Probably Make Antibodies For A Lifetime (Nature)
Recovered COVID-19 Patients Possess Robust Immunity To Virus (Fed.)
DeSantis: No Mandates, No Lockdowns, No Restrictions, No School Closures (CTH)
Nearly 1.6 Billion Disposable Masks Polluted Oceans In 2020 (JTN)
Things Get Ripe (Kunstler)
Thailand Bans Sharing Of News That ‘Causes Public Fear’ Amid Pandemic Criticism (G.)
Twitter Suspends Commentator for Criticizing Vaccine Policies (Turley)
Get Ready for the ‘No-Buy’ List (David Sacks)
Craig Murray’s Jailing The Latest Move To Kill Independent Journalism (Cook)
Poke (Chuck)

 

 

Brian Tyson

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was either that or 350%. They decided to lowball it.

UK Gov’t Panel: Covid Mutation With 35% Death Rate ‘Realistic Possibility’ (RT)

A British government science panel has claimed that a coronavirus variant could emerge with a 35% fatality rate – akin to that seen in the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) – noting that vaccine booster doses may be needed. A Friday report by the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) looked at a series of hypothetical scenarios related to Covid-19 variants, finding it a “realistic possibility” that a mutation could appear with a case fatality rate comparable to SARS (10%) or MERS (35%), both of which belong to the coronavirus family.

While the body said that existing vaccines would remain effective against “serious disease” from such a variant short of “significant drift” or change in the virus’ spike proteins, it nonetheless added that “an increase in morbidity and mortality would be expected even in the face of vaccination,” as the jabs do not “fully prevent infection in most individuals.” The report suggested a number of ways to deal with a more deadly mutation, including “vaccine booster doses to maintain protection against severe disease,” as well as measures to limit the introduction of new variants from abroad. SAGE also considered the likelihood of a variant that “evades current vaccines,” saying that could occur in several different ways. The most likely cause would be a form of genetic variation known as “antigenic drift,” which happens when a virus mutates to a point when antibodies that prevented infection caused by previous strains no longer work.

The panel deemed that “almost certain” to happen to some degree. A “worst case” scenario described in the paper might happen when the immune system will no longer be able to produce antibodies for new emerging variants, either due to its past contact with the virus or as result of “previously experienced vaccines.” Such a doomsday scenario would make it “difficult to revaccinate” patients, however the researchers concluded that outcome is “less likely.” The same agency released a separate report on vaccines on Friday, which found that immunity is “highly likely” to diminish over time, suggesting “there will be vaccination campaigns against SARS-CoV-2 for many years to come.”

However, the report on variants also noted the coronavirus could follow an evolutionary path that sees it become more transmissible but less virulent, with SAGE drawing a comparison to “common colds.” It added that while this is “unlikely in the short term,” it could later become a “realistic possibility” as the virus fully adapts to its human hosts SAGE concluded that the UK should continue to “proactively support” a global vaccination drive, saying that could help to reduce the likelihood of “dangerous variants emerging in other parts of the world,” while also urging for increased investment in viral surveillance to keep tabs on new mutations.

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Not the internal document leaked on Thursday, but this one from Friday.

CDC Releases Study Showing 3/4 Delta Cases Are Among The Vaccinated (RT)

The CDC has released a study backing up its decision to recommend indoor masking for both vaccinated and unvaccinated Americans. The study examined one outbreak and found three-quarters of people testing positive were vaccinated. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) revised its masking guidelines on Tuesday, urging all Americans in areas with high Covid-19 transmission to mask up when indoors, regardless of vaccination status. Mask mandates in companies, government departments, and certain local jurisdictions followed, as CDC Director Rochelle Walensky insisted the decision was made on the back of fresh scientific evidence. The CDC released that evidence on Friday. In a study of 469 cases of Covid-19 that broke out in the resort town of Cape Cod, Massachusetts, earlier this month, 74% occurred in “fully vaccinated persons.”

Four out of five patients hospitalized were fully vaccinated, and on average the inoculated had completed their two rounds of doses only 86 days before infection. The cases studied occurred in people vaccinated primarily with Pfizer and Moderna shots, with a smaller number having received Johnson & Johnson’s one-dose jab. No one vaccine was singled out as providing better or worse protection, and none appeared to prevent symptoms from developing. Some 79% of vaccinated patients were symptomatic, the study noted. Lab testing revealed that 90% of all the Cape Cod infections involved the Delta variant of the coronavirus. The report lends weight to the argument that the current crop of vaccines aren’t as effective against the Delta variant, although the CDC and WHO both insist that vaccination is effective against “severe disease and death” from the virus, to quote WHO technical lead Maria Van Kerkhove in a briefing earlier on Friday.

[..] The study appears to negate the argument by top health officials that unvaccinated Americans are responsible for the fourfold rise in Covid-19 cases in the US since June. “This is an issue predominantly among the unvaccinated, which is the reason why we’re out there, practically pleading with the unvaccinated people to go out and get vaccinated,” White House coronavirus adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci told CNN on Sunday, adding that the US is currently moving “in the wrong direction” with regard to stamping out Covid-19. Whether mask mandates will slow the spread of the Delta variant will be borne out with time. Beyond requiring masks and pressuring Americans to get vaccinated, the White House is running out of options.

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They can’t get their message straight.

Vaccine mandate? Useless.

White House Covid-19 Spokesman Yells At Media For Quoting CDC Documents (RT)

Even as they quoted internal CDC documents backing the renewed mask mandates due to the rise in Delta variant Covid-19 cases, both the New York Times and the Washington Post got a tongue-lashing from the White House. “Vaccinated people do not transmit the virus at the same rate as unvaccinated people and if you fail to include that context you’re doing it wrong,” Ben Wakana, deputy director of strategic communications for the White House Covid-19 response team, tweeted at the New York Times on Friday – in all caps – unhappy about the paper’s coverage of the new findings from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Wakana also had words for the Washington Post, which first published the CDC documents, calling their coverage “completely irresponsible” and countering it with CDC statements from three days prior.

The Twitter meltdown caught the attention of journalist Glenn Greenwald, who called it “super interesting” and suggested that “elite institutions” could find time “in between calling ordinary citizens stupid and selfish” to reflect on the “huge messaging failures, inconsistencies and lies that account for much distrust in official [Covid] messaging.” Wakana’s attempts to whip the corporate media into line follows Friday’s announcement by the CDC that claims 74% of people who recently got infected by the Delta variant of the coronavirus in a Cape Cod, Massachusetts resort were fully vaccinated. The Cape Cod study was “pivotal” in informing the decision to recommend indoor masking, said CDC Director Rochelle Walensky. While the White House embraced the masking guidelines earlier this week, it has continued to insist on vaccinations as the way forward and argue that the rise in cases was predominantly a problem “among the unvaccinated.”

Deputy Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters on Friday that a national vaccine mandate is “not under consideration at this time,” and that the US is “not going to head towards a lockdown.” Jean-Pierre specifically cited CDC’s Walensky as an expert the White House defers to on virus matters. “We listen to the scientists, and they tell us that it’s the Delta variant,” she told reporters. “That’s what they’re telling us… These are scientists, they’re the experts.” Speaking with Fox News on Friday afternoon, Walensky said a federal vaccine mandate might be in the cards. “That’s something that I think the administration is looking into,” she said, only to backtrack later and “clarify” that there will be no such mandate.

Walensky kids

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“..it may last for years or even decades and may not be limited to Covid-19 either; any virus that can cross-react with the binding antibodies would be enhanced.”

Fauci *ADMITS* I Was Right In Spring of 2020 (Denninger)

Let’s be clear: Fauci has now admitted, on live camera, that a person with a breakthrough infection is just as dangerous as someone who was never vaccinated and gets infected. This was expected by anyone who has ever studied anything about viral disease and the use of non-sterilizing immunizations when infections are active in a community. We have known this all the way back to Polio and is why we insisted on a sterilizing vaccine (OPV) following the inactivated injected vaccine (IPV) in the United States until 20 years after we were declared polio-free. In addition it is exactly what is expected if a non-sterilizing vaccine produces both binding and neutralizing antibodies and we know, scientifically, that all the existing jabs do exactly that. When levels wane you still have binding antibodies and when the neutralizing level falls below the threshold to protect you now have an enhancement of the disease rather than protection.

A person who was never infected and not vaccinated does not have the binding antibodies and thus, while at risk, doesn’t get the enhancement. Now we have real-world evidence that in fact the jabs produce risk as immunity wanes and that said risk may exceed, on a personal level, what someone has who never been infected or vaccinated is exposed to. As I pointed out the case rate had peaked and was headed down — hard — before the first jab went into the first arm. That which you do after something happens can’t be due to whatever it is you did. Not one group saw that collapse come after vaccination and no sub-group, even the very old, reached even 20% coverage before the case rate was in the ditch Obviously vaccines did not stop Covid in the winter and thus there’s no reason to believe they will materially impact whatever variation may come around — now or in the future.

Got JabbersRemorse yet folks? It appears you may need to continually take boosters to avoid this and accept the risk of blood clots, strokes, heart attacks, PAH and other adverse effects not just once or twice but every six months to a year if not more-often! Oh, and if you choose not to the duration of your increased risk is not known — it may last for years or even decades and may not be limited to Covid-19 either; any virus that can cross-react with the binding antibodies would be enhanced. What I said was the correct path forward in early 2020 and have maintained since is:

• Protect the most-vulnerable who cannot protect themselves. This means locking in all care-givers in institutional settings for the elderly and medically infirm. Yep, you work there, you do not interact with the public until and unless you can prove seroconversion. Period. If we have to pay more to get people to agree to this so be it. It is what it is.

• Urge immediate intervention with suspected or believed effective drugs that are rationally safe at the first sign of infection. If you can buy or use something of statistically similar risk over the counter then you must be able to buy these over the counter on your demand to a pharmacist, with he or she checking for interactions with other drugs you may be taking and warning as appropriate, but with the choice being yours and nobody else’s. Period. The list of said drugs includes hydroxychloroquine, Ivermectin, budesonide, famotidine and a few others. Why? Because we had no reason to believe originally that natural infection was not sufficient to prevent, in nearly every case, re-infection with a serious or severe instance as that has always been true for every other respiratory pandemic virus and time has proved this up for Covid-19 as well. In short natural infection has now proved superior to vaccination (note that nobody is seriously claiming Delta and other “variants” evade natural immunity) and therefore in those who are at reasonably-low risk infection is preferred as the immunity it produces is at least equal and likely superior, with said infection mitigated as to severity as one chooses. MY ASS, MY CHOICE.

• For those at extremely high risk offer but not mandate whatever prophylactic(s) we can come up with. This includes the current jabs but certainly isn’t limited to them. For example there is some evidence that Ivermectin is effective as a prophylaxis. Vitamin D may be; there is a very strong association between Vitamin D deficiency and severe or fatal Covid infections but association is not proof of cause nor that correcting it would change outcomes. Nonetheless there is nearly zero risk to that path forward and, for Ivermectin, the data is that the serious adverse event risk is 1 in 600,000 people. That’s tiny and less than the risk from Tylenol, to name just one OTC drug in question. Again, the goal here is for infections to happen as they will but not result in serious outcomes as that is the path out of every pandemic through history and there is no evidence this one will be different.

• Those who are at statistically-zero risk of serious harm or death (e.g. healthy children) should be encouraged to live normally and expect to get the virus. Their natural immunity provides a “free of cost” firewall for everyone else. We are criminally insane to do anything that limits or otherwise attempts to prevent that.

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2 months old but very relevant. And then they insert doubts. Antibodies for life, but do get a booster.

Had Covid? You’ll Probably Make Antibodies For A Lifetime (Nature)

Many people who have been infected with SARS-CoV-2 will probably make antibodies against the virus for most of their lives. So suggest researchers who have identified long-lived antibody-producing cells in the bone marrow of people who have recovered from COVID-191. The study provides evidence that immunity triggered by SARS-CoV-2 infection will be extraordinarily long-lasting. Adding to the good news, “the implications are that vaccines will have the same durable effect”, says Menno van Zelm, an immunologist at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia. Antibodies — proteins that can recognize and help to inactivate viral particles — are a key immune defence. After a new infection, short-lived cells called plasmablasts are an early source of antibodies.

But these cells recede soon after a virus is cleared from the body, and other, longer-lasting cells make antibodies: memory B cells patrol the blood for reinfection, while bone marrow plasma cells (BMPCs) hide away in bones, trickling out antibodies for decades. “A plasma cell is our life history, in terms of the pathogens we’ve been exposed to,” says Ali Ellebedy, a B-cell immunologist at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri, who led the study, published in Nature on 24 May. Researchers presumed that SARS-CoV-2 infection would trigger the development of BMPCs — nearly all viral infections do — but there have been signs that severe COVID-19 might disrupt the cells’ formation2. Some early COVID-19 immunity studies also stoked worries, when they found that antibody levels plunged not long after recovery.

Ellebedy’s team tracked antibody production in 77 people who had recovered from mostly mild cases of COVID-19. As expected, SARS-CoV-2 antibodies plummeted in the four months after infection. But this decline slowed, and up to 11 months after infection, the researchers could still detect antibodies that recognized the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein. To identify the source of the antibodies, Ellebedy’s team collected memory B cells and bone marrow from a subset of participants. Seven months after developing symptoms, most of these participants still had memory B cells that recognized SARS-CoV-2. In 15 of the 18 bone-marrow samples, the scientists found ultra-low but detectable populations of BMPCs whose formation had been triggered by the individuals’ coronavirus infections 7–8 months before. Levels of these cells were stable in all five people who gave another bone-marrow sample several months later.

“This is a very important observation,” given claims of dwindling SARS-CoV-2 antibodies, says Rafi Ahmed, an immunologist at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, whose team co-discovered the cells in the late 1990s. What’s not clear is what antibody levels will look like in the long term and whether they offer any protection, Ahmed adds. “We’re early in the game. We’re not looking at five years, ten years after infection.” Ellebedy’s team has observed early signs that Pfizer’s mRNA vaccine should trigger the production of the same cells4. But the persistence of antibody production, whether elicited by vaccination or by infection, does not ensure long-lasting immunity to COVID-19. The ability of some emerging SARS-CoV-2 variants to blunt the protective effects of antibodies means that additional immunizations may be needed to restore levels, says Ellebedy. “My presumption is, we will need a booster.”

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“..the human immune system produces a multitude of neutralizing antibodies, while also activating certain T and B cells to establish immune memory.”

Recovered COVID-19 Patients Possess Robust Immunity To Virus (Fed.)

A newly released study conducted by Emory University suggests recovered COVID-19 patients possess long-term immunity to the respiratory virus months after infection. Published in Cell Reports Medicine, the comprehensive study analyzed 254 individuals with mostly mild to moderate symptoms of SARS-CoV-2 infection over an eight-month period and found that patients possessed “durable broad-based immune responses” to the virus after recovering from an infection. “The study serves as a framework to define and predict long-lived immunity to SARS-CoV-2 after natural infection,” said Emory Vaccine Center director Rafi Ahmed. “We also saw indications in this phase that natural immunity could continue to persist.” Ahmed served as a lead author on the study.

The study goes on to note that in response to an active infection in the body, the human immune system produces a multitude of neutralizing antibodies, while also activating certain T and B cells to establish immune memory. Ahmed denotes that these developments make a strong case for some form of lasting immunity to the virus. “We saw that antibody responses, especially IgG antibodies, were not only durable in the vast majority of patients but decayed at a slower rate than previously estimated, which suggests that patients are generating longer-lived plasma cells that can neutralize the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein,” he said.

Moreover, the analysis also demonstrates that not only are recovered patients likely to possess lasting immunity to existing SARS-COV-2 variants, but that “SARS-CoV-2 infection also boosts antibody titers to SARS-CoV-1 and common betacoronaviruses.” “While pre-existing exposure and antibodies against HKU1 and OC43 betacoronaviruses are common in adults, pre-existing SARS-CoV-1 exposure is rare and antibody levels to SARS-CoV-1 spike protein were very low (essentially negative) in the pre-pandemic healthy controls,” the study says. “However, SARS-CoV-1 spike-reactive antibodies increased significantly after SARS-CoV-2 infection.” The report later goes on to conclude that taken together, the results of the study “suggest that broad and effective immunity may persist long-term in recovered COVID-19 patients.”

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Were the teachers elected?

DeSantis: No Mandates, No Lockdowns, No Restrictions, No School Closures (CTH)

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis delivered a statement about the future of Florida today while visiting Cape Coral on the Southwest coast. During his remarks, the governor highlighted his support for parent’s rights, taking the position that parents should be the ones making decisions for their children on masks, schools and vaccines, not government. Governor DeSantis promised Florida residents there will be no lockdowns, no mandates, no restrictions and no school closures. Additionally, the governor urged all local communities to follow common sense science and said he will soon issue an order allowing parents or guardians to choose whether their child wears a mask in schools.

“As of today, very few [school districts] are requiring it. Nevertheless, we have a lot of push from the CDC and others to make every single person, kids and staff have to wear masks all day,” DeSantis said during the event. “That would be a huge mistake.” The Florida Education Association (FEA), the largest teacher union in the state, said they will fight the Florida governor on all measures. The teachers union is considering not going back to work with in-person teaching, and has vowed not to give up control of the (k-12) children to the parents. “Governor DeSantis continues to think that Tallahassee knows best what all Floridians need,” FEA President Andrew Spar said in a statement. “We reject that kind of thinking” Spar continued.

“Instead, we ask Governor DeSantis to allow all Florida’s citizens to have a voice by empowering the elected leaders of cities, counties and school districts to make health and safety decisions locally based on their unique needs and circumstances,” Spar said. Emphasizing how the union feels they have more power in the blue and leftist urban area, and they have vowed to fight any conservative effort in the state to undermine the teachers financial interests and control over Florida students.

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So where’s the rest?

Nearly 1.6 Billion Disposable Masks Polluted Oceans In 2020 (JTN)

Nearly 1.6 billion disposable face masks ended up in the earth’s oceans in 2020, out of the roughly 52 billion produced in response to the pandemic, according to a new study. While governments around the world continue to support mask mandates in public spaces, the impact of disposable masks is only just emerging. The report, by the Hong Kong-based marine conservation group OceansAsia, title “Masks on the Beach,” also estimated that roughly 5,500 tons of plastic pollution entered the ocean in 2020 from masks. The figure is equal to 7% of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, a mass of plastic debris floating in the ocean that is twice the size of Texas.


While a cigarette butt or plastic bag takes 20 years or less to degrade in the ocean, according to Visual Capitalist, a plastic bottle, disposable diaper or a disposable mask takes nearly 450 years to fully break down. The majority of disposable masks – like N95 respirators and surgical masks – were produced in China factories, which were reportedly producing 450 million masks per day in April 2020.

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“..the toiling myrmidons of Big Pharma..”

Things Get Ripe (Kunstler)

Anyway, the Covid-19 story is now utterly unraveling and the official actions around it look desperately idiotic. It’s back to mass mask-ups and maybe even lockdowns. But don’t get the idea that those mRNA vaccines turned out to have a short half-life — though it kind of looks like they did. In which case, why the panicky rush to get absolutely everybody vaxed up? And how’s that working? I’ll tell you how: only with last-ditch attempts at totalitarian intimidation… you will have no rights to earn a living, go out in public, buy anything, or even protest on the street about any of these insults to human dignity.


The world has never seen the launch of such a gigantic lead balloon. All week, the hysteria has been building and now the balloon is falling to earth as the CDC prepares to announce that the vaxes are a bust against the “Delta variant” and it’s back to the drawing board for all the toiling myrmidons of Big Pharma. Did House Speaker Nancy Pelosi get some insider info on this, having appointed herself mask-sheriff of the US Capitol Building, threatening now to arrest non-masked members and their staffers. Indeed, even a few fully-vaxed-up congresspeople were moved to shout, “Hey wait a minute.”

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Thailand does what all western countries do: censor.

Thailand Bans Sharing Of News That ‘Causes Public Fear’ Amid Pandemic Criticism (G.)

The Thai government has outlawed sharing news that “causes public fear”, even if such reports are true, as officials face mounting criticism over their handling of the pandemic. On Thursday, the government tightened an emergency decree imposed more than a year ago that initially targeted false news. The latest constrictions forbid people from distributing “information causing public fear”, or from sharing “distorted information causing misunderstanding which affects national stability”. The measures have been widely condemned by media groups and rights experts as an attempt to shut down negative news reports and silence debate. Sunai Phasuk, senior researcher on Thailand in Human Rights Watch’s Asia division, described it as a “serious blow” to press freedom in the country.


“I think the government realises it is now facing a credibility crisis because of this disastrous response to the Covid situation, but instead of trying to find better solutions, more efficient solutions, it chooses to gag anyone from speaking about its failures,” said Sunai. “This provision doesn’t care about accuracy or whether it is true or false.” Under the regulations, if false content is spread online, the country’s broadcasting regulator will contact internet service providers to identify the individual’s ISP address and block their internet access. Internet providers who fail to comply will be deemed to have breached the requirements of their operating licences, and action will be taken against them. Sunai said he feared the measures wold be used against online reporters and critics who use social media to share political news and commentaries that do not flatter the government.

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Rubin’s been reinstated, with Twitter apologizing for the “error”.

Twitter Suspends Commentator for Criticizing Vaccine Policies (Turley)

Twitter’s actions against political commentator Dave Rubin is an example of how these companies are now dispensing with any pretense in actively barring criticism of government policies and viewpoints. Rubin was locked out under the common “misinformation” claim by Twitter. However, his tweet was an opinion based on demonstrably true facts. One can certainly disagree with the conclusion but this is an example of core political speech being curtailed by a company with a long history of biased censorship, including the barring of discussions involving Hunter Biden’s laptop before the election. With a new election looming, these companies appear to be ramping up their censorship efforts.

In his tweet, Rubin stated: “They want a federal vaccine mandate for vaccines which are clearly not working as promised just weeks ago. People are getting and transmitting Covid despite vax. Plus now they’re prepping us for booster shots. A sane society would take a pause. We do not live in a sane society.” Even President Biden admitted yesterday that he was wrong weeks ago when he assured people that if they took the vaccine, they would not be at risk for the variants and could dispense with their masks. There are breakthrough cases that have taken many officials by surprise. It is also true that there is now talk of likely booster shots.

Rubin takes those facts and adds his opinion that we should “take a pause.” Twitter declared that to be a violation of its policy “on spreading misleading and potentially harmful information related to COVID-19.” As always, Twitter simply refuses to explain its censorship decision beyond these generalized, categorical statements. It is not clear if Twitter is calling these facts misinformation or objecting to Rubin’s opinion about a pause. It does not matter. Twitter does not like his viewpoint and does not want others to read it or discuss it. This is precisely what Democratic leaders pressed Twitter to do in past hearings. As previously discussed the hearing with Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey who followed up his apology for censoring the Hunter Biden story but pledging more censorship.

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Sacks is one of the co-creators of Paypal.

Get Ready for the ‘No-Buy’ List (David Sacks)

I have no desire to defend genuinely hateful or extremist groups. Indeed, when I was COO at PayPal, we regularly worked with law enforcement to restrict illegal activity on our platform. But we are talking about something very different here: shutting down people and organizations that express views that are entirely lawful, even if they are unpopular in Silicon Valley. As with the censorship of speech, financial deplatforming often begins as something that seems narrow and reasonable — who wouldn’t want to ban the Oath Keepers or Proud Boys? But once the power is granted, it metastasizes into widespread use. We have watched this unfold with online censorship. Many cheered the decision by the largest social media companies to kick President Trump and his most rabid supporters off their platforms after January 6.

They cheered even louder when Apple, Google, and Amazon deplatformed Parler, the one speech platform that didn’t ban Trump. In defense of these policies, we were told that these were private business decisions made by companies that had every right under both the First Amendment and Section 230 to police speech on their platforms. Then, a couple weeks ago, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki casually announced that the Biden administration has been flagging and reporting posts on Facebook, YouTube, and other platforms for removal as Covid-19 “misinformation” (another term with a changing and ever-expanding definition). She even said that when one tech company removes a post, they all should do it, implying that the White House is centrally coordinating a blocklist across social media properties.

The suppression of speech by the government is blatantly unconstitutional under the First Amendment. Given that both Congress and the administration are threatening Big Tech companies with antitrust lawsuits and the repeal of Section 230’s liability protection, it’s disingenuous for Psaki and others to claim Big Tech is doing this policing entirely of their own accord. How could they object when the administration and Congress have hung the sword of Damocles over their heads? The harm is compounded when the loss of speech rights is followed by restrictions on the ability to participate in online economic activity. Within days of the Trump-Parler cancellations, most of the finance tech stack (Stripe, Square, PayPal, Shopify, GoFundMe, and even enterprise SaaS company Okta, which wasn’t used by anyone in the events of January 6) declared they were canceling the accounts of “individuals and organizations connected to the [Capitol] riot.”

Now PayPal has gone much further, creating the economic equivalent of the No-Fly List with the ADL’s assistance. If history is any guide, other fintech companies will soon follow suit. As we saw in the case of speech restrictions, the political monoculture that prevails among employees of these companies will create pressure for all of them to act as a bloc. When someone mistakenly lands on the No-Fly List, they can at least sue or petition the government for redress. But when your name lands on a No-Buy List created by a consortium of private fintech companies, to whom can you appeal?

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is anyone awake anymore in Britain?

Craig Murray’s Jailing The Latest Move To Kill Independent Journalism (Cook)

Craig Murray, a former ambassador to Uzbekistan, the father of a newborn child, a man in very poor health and one who has no prior convictions, will have to hand himself over to the Scottish police on Sunday morning. He becomes the first person ever to be imprisoned on the obscure and vaguely defined charge of “jigsaw identification”. Murray is also the first person to be jailed in Britain for contempt of court in half a century – a period when such different legal and moral values prevailed that the British establishment had only just ended the prosecution of “homosexuals” and the jailing of women for having abortions.

Murray’s imprisonment for eight months by Lady Dorrian, Scotland’s second most senior judge, is of course based entirely on a keen reading of Scottish law rather than evidence of the Scottish and London political establishments seeking revenge on the former diplomat. And the UK supreme court’s refusal on Thursday to hear Murray’s appeal despite many glaring legal anomalies in the case, thereby paving his path to jail, is equally rooted in a strict application of the law, and not influenced in any way by political considerations. Murray’s jailing has nothing to do with the fact that he embarrassed the British state in the early 2000s by becoming that rarest of things: a whistleblowing diplomat. He exposed the British government’s collusion, along with the US, in Uzbekistan’s torture regime.

His jailing also has nothing to do with the fact that Murray has embarrassed the British state more recently by reporting the woeful and continuing legal abuses in a London courtroom as Washington seeks to extradite Wikileaks’ founder, Julian Assange, and lock him away for life in a maximum security prison. The US wants to make an example of Assange for exposing its war crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan and for publishing leaked diplomatic cables that pulled the mask off Washington’s ugly foreign policy. Murray’s jailing has nothing to do with the fact that the contempt proceedings against him allowed the Scottish court to deprive him of his passport so that he could not travel to Spain and testify in a related Assange case that is severely embarrassing Britain and the US.

The Spanish hearing has been presented with reams of evidence that the US illegally spied on Assange inside the Ecuadorean embassy in London, where he sought political asylum to avoid extradition. Murray was due to testify that his own confidential conversations with Assange were filmed, as were Assange’s privileged meetings with his own lawyers. Such spying should have seen the case against Assange thrown out, had the judge in London actually been applying the law. Similarly, Murray’s jailing has nothing to do with his embarrassing the Scottish political and legal establishments by reporting, almost single-handedly, the defence case in the trial of Scotland’s former First Minister, Alex Salmond. Unreported by the corporate media, the evidence submitted by Salmond’s lawyers led a jury dominated by women to acquit him of a raft of sexual assault charges. It is Murray’s reporting of Salmond’s defence that has been the source of his current troubles.

And most assuredly, Murray’s jailing has precisely nothing to do with his argument – one that might explain why the jury was so unconvinced by the prosecution case – that Salmond was actually the victim of a high-level plot by senior politicians at Holyrood to discredit him and prevent his return to the forefront of Scottish politics. The intention, says Murray, was to deny Salmond the chance to take on London and make a serious case for independence, and thereby expose the SNP’s increasing lip service to that cause.

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Well done. Twitter thread.

Poke (Chuck)

ME: CDC, should I get poke if I already had Covid?
CDC: “Yes, you should be poked regardless of whether you already had COVID-19. That’s because experts do not yet know how long you are protected from getting sick again after recovering from COVID-19.”
ME: Oh, so we don’t know how long natural immunity lasts. So, how long does poke-induced immunity last?
CDC: “There is still a lot we’re learning about pokes and CDC is constantly reviewing evidence and updating guidance. We don’t know how long protection lasts for those poked.”
ME: Okay, but wait a second. I thought you said the reason I need the poke was because we don’t know how long my natural immunity lasts, but you’re saying we ALSO don’t know how long poke immunity lasts either. So, how exactly is the poke immunity better than my natural immunity?
CDC: …

ME: Uh … alright. But, haven’t there been a bunch of studies suggesting that natural immunity could last for years or decades?
CDC: Yes.
NEWYORKTIMES: “Years, maybe decades, according to a new study.”
ME: Ah. So natural immunity might last longer than poke immunity?
CDC: Possibly.
ME: Okay. If I get the poke, does that mean I won’t get sick?
BRITAIN: Nope. We are entering a seasonal spike and half of our infections and hospital admissions are poked people.

ME: CDC, is this true? Are there people in the U.S. catching it after getting poked?
CDC: We stopped tracking breakthrough cases. We accept voluntary reports but aren’t out there looking for them.
ME: Does that mean that if someone comes in the hospital with Covid, you don’t track them because they’ve been poked? You only track the UN-poked Covid cases?
CDC: That’s right.
ME: Hmm. Well, if I can still get sick after I get the poke, how is it helping me?
CDC: We never said you wouldn’t get sick. We said it would reduce your chances of serious illness or death.

ME: Oh, sorry. Alright, exactly how much does it reduce my chances?
CDC: We don’t know “exactly.”
ME: Oh. Then what’s your best estimate for how much risk reduction there is?
CDC: We don’t know, okay? Next question.
ME: Um, if I’m healthy and don’t want the poke, is there any reason I should get it?
CDC: Yes, for the collective.

ME: How does the collective benefit from me getting poked?
CDC: Because you could spread the virus to someone else who might get sick and die.
ME: Can a poked person spread the virus to someone else?
CDC: Yes.
ME: So if I get poked, I could still spread the virus to someone else?
CDC: Yes.

ME: But I thought you just said, the REASON I should get poked was to prevent me spreading the virus? How does that make sense if I can still catch Covid and spread it after getting the poke?
CDC: Never mind that. Also, if you stay unpoked, there’s a chance the virus could possibly mutate into a strain that escapes the pokes protection, putting all poked people at risk.
ME: So the poke stops the virus from mutating?
CDC: No.
ME: So it can still mutate with the poke?
CDC: Yes.
ME: This seems confusing. If the poke doesn’t stop mutations, and it doesn’t stop infections, then how does me getting poked help prevent a more deadly strain from evolving to escape the poke?
CDC:

CDC: You aren’t listening, okay? The bottom line is: as long as you are unpoked, you pose a threat to poked people.
ME: But what KIND of threat??
CDC: The threat that they could get a serious case of Covid and possibly die.
ME: My brain hurts. Didn’t you JUST say that the poke doesn’t stop people from catching Covid, but prevents a serious case or dying? Now it seems like you’re saying poked people can still easily die from Covid even after they got the poke from an unpoked person! Which is it??

CDC: That’s it, we’re hanging up now.
ME: Wait! I just want to make sure I understand all this. So, even if I ALREADY had Covid, I should STILL get poked, because we don’t know how long natural immunity lasts, and we also don’t know how long poke immunity lasts….
…And I should get the poke to keep a poked person from catching Covid from me, but even if I get the poke, I can give it to the poked person anyways. And, the other poked person can still easily catch a serious case of Covid from me and die. Do I have all that right?

……
ME: Um, hello? Is anyone there?

Read more …

 

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Dr. Robert Malone, 2 1/2 hours, the whole story.

 

 

 

 

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Jul 272021
 
 July 27, 2021  Posted by at 9:17 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , ,  84 Responses »


Roy Lichtenstein Woman in Bath 1963

 

Spike Protein Is Still Circulating 5 Months From Vaccination (VT)
Early Vaccinees Are Twice As Likely To Catch Covid As Later Recipients (ToI)
New Mandate That MUST Be Enforced NOW (Denninger)
About The French Guyana Paper From The CDC (IM Doc)
A Last Word of Caution (VanDen Bossche)
Journalists: Covid-19 News ‘Censored’ To Create ‘One Official Narrative’ (PG)
Here We Go Again (Berenson)
Most Covid Patients In UK Hospitals Only Tested Positive After Admission (ZH)
A Long-term Perspective On Immunity To COVID (Nature)
Decline In UK COVID Cases Signals Coming “Inflection” For US (ZH)
In a Hall of Mirrors You Have To Break Some Glass To See Clearly (Kunstler)
The Jan. 6th Show Trials Threaten All of Us (Ron Paul)

 

 

Science can flourish only in an atmosphere of free speech
– Albert Einstein

 

 

Pfizer Purchase Agreement

 

 

 

McCullough: 3-5 years of turmoil

 

 

 

 

Fleming: what’s in the vaccines?

 

 

 

 

Weinstein Tucker

 

 

Twitter thread.

Since the “vaccines” have only been used for some 5 months, this means: “To infinity and beyond!”.

And since Covid is so similar to the flu, what happens if you catch that next year, or the one after that?

Spike Protein Is Still Circulating 5 Months From Vaccination (VT)

Robert Malone has said you need to measure duration, distribution, and amount for the spike protein. FDA never did this; one of our researchers did. They found spike protein is still circulating 5 months from vaccination in 100% of patients tested (6 people; random pick). And yes, they plan to publish this. But I wanted to give our followers advance notice. One of the 6 had spike in 15% of his monocytes!!! This is NOT limited to 5 months out… This could last for years, we just don’t know yet. The 6 were randomly picked. They wanted to use them as “healthy controls.” Then the researchers freaked out when they found this. Whoa. Anyone can verify this but nobody in academia will attempt to do this. The results will be too embarrassing. It will prove Malone was right the whole time about importance of measuring those 3 things. He said this on the Darkhorse podcast that was censored on YouTube.


THIS IS NOT NORMAL. The antigen is supposed to stick around for a week or two and vanish. Is it any wonder why people who have been vaccinated have long term symptoms? Part of this is permanent damage caused by the inflammation (which causes scarring which doesn’t heal)… The antigen (in this case spike) is SUPPOSED to disappear in 2 weeks. So this can explain long-term vaccine symptoms (along with permanent or temp damage from the inflammation and blood clots caused by the vaccine). Permanent damage is from scarring caused by inflammation. Anyone can replicate this if they have the proper assays. Will anyone? Will they be able to get it published? That’s the big question. Journals censor by deeming unfavorable research as “out of scope” for the journal.

Read more …

The spike proteins stay, but they don’t protect you (any longer, if they ever did).

Early Vaccinees Are Twice As Likely To Catch Covid As Later Recipients (ToI)

People vaccinated before late February are twice as likely to catch the coronavirus than other inoculated Israelis, according to new research. “We looked at tens of thousands of people tested in the month of June, alongside data on how long had passed since their second shot, and found that those vaccinated early were more likely to test positive,” Dr. Yotam Shenhar, who headed the research, told The Times of Israel. “This definitely reinforces the argument for giving a third vaccine dose to the elderly.” The report, published by the healthcare provider Leumit, comes on the heels of other Israeli studies that suggest a decreasing vaccine effectiveness, partly as a result of the Delta variant and partly because of the passage of time. However, British data indicates the Israeli studies may be overstating the case.

Data released by the Health Ministry on Thursday suggested that people vaccinated in January were said to have just 16% protection against infection now, while in those vaccinated in April the effectiveness was at 75%. The Leumit study looked only at the apparent waning of protection over time, and divided the vaccinated population into two based on inoculation dates, comparing early vaccinators to late vaccinators. Shenhar, head of Leumit’s labs, acknowledged that the early vaccinators group includes many people who raced to get shots because they have underlying illnesses, which may make them more vulnerable to infection. But he said that could not fully account for the stark effect seen in the data. Shenhar said the data should prompt the government to seriously consider booster shots for over-70s.

[..] In his study, the apparent waning effect in immunity was felt across all ages. For all age groups, early vaccinators were 1.95 times more likely to be confirmed coronavirus positive. Among those aged 60-plus, early vaccinators are twice as likely to get infected. For those aged 40-59 early vaccinators are 2.1 times more vulnerable, and among under 39s they are 1.6 more likely to catch the coronavirus. “In a previous analysis we showed that as time passes since the vaccine, the level of antibodies drops at a rate of about 40% per month. This new study builds a clearer picture of the effect seen in the months after vaccination,” said Shenhar.

Read more …

As I said in Rage Against the Vaccine, we are finding out that the vaccinated are the spreaders. This is such a blow to the official story, they’ll deny it as long as possible.

New Mandate That MUST Be Enforced NOW (Denninger)

Work in health care? I don’t care if you are in direct patient-care or not; if you work in a medical facility of any sort this applies to you if you took the jab. We now know if you become infected with Covid, and you had the jab, you will have a higher viral titer before becoming symptomatic, if you become symptomatic at all. That is, you, compared against someone who did not take the jab where you are both infected, are much more likely to transmit the virus to someone else before knowing if you get infected. Since viral replication occurs in hours per cycle, not days, testing, unless on an every day basis, is not sufficient to detect the risk. Nearly everyone coming into a medical facility is at heightened risk of one sort or another; people do not, generally-speaking, go into medical facilities if all is well. This is certainly true for hospitals and “urgent care” facilities.

Masks cannot mitigate this risk as the virus is in aerosols and when you exhale you will thus project it into the environment if it is present. It does not matter if you use an N95 or surgical mask; an N95 will still break the seal around your face when you exhale to some extent and thus you will exhale virus if you are infected. Therefore if you work in such a facility and you took the jab, given what we now know, you are hereby obligated from now until forever into the future, until Covid and any future mutation of it is no longer of material concern, obligated to use both Ivermectin on an every 3-day basis, and Budesonide on an every day basis, both as prophylaxis. This obligation is now attached and permanent so long as you remain employed.

Since people believe that there is nothing wrong with mandating people take non-sterilizing shots to work in health care then, given that you ****ed up and are now putting people at grossly-enhanced risk there is also nothing wrong with this mandate either. Said prophylaxis is to take place on video and be recorded each day for the Budesonide and every three days for Ivermectin. If you refuse you are fired and your medical credentials are stripped. If you infect someone without documented proof that you have taken this prophylaxis as a medical worker and have been jabbed you are charged with felony assault and if they die you are charged with depraved indifference homicide, which in most jurisdictions is Murder 2. If law enforcement will not bring these charges then the relatives of said person who is impacted has every moral and ethical right to personally enforce the appropriate penalties.

Read more …

A comment at Naked Capitalism confirms it once more: it’s the vaccinated. Who are free to travel, eat indoors etc., … and free to spread the virus.

About The French Guyana Paper From The CDC (IM Doc)

This is how science – the actual process – not the Fauci version – should be working. I have repeatedly stated that I am seeing much much more vaccinated positives than one would ever have expected. As I have stated, they seem to be much sicker (though not critically so) and they tend to happen in clusters. For the past two months, this has stuck out from the dominant media narrative. I have never had to fight the cognitive dissonance between the media and my own eyeballs in my life. I belong to a large non-public alumni group of my residency program that has literally thousands of IM docs all over America. The first thing a scientist does is to confirm that your observations are general or something you are just seeing. It was quickly obvious from that group that I was far from alone despite the “minimal breakthrough cases” media narrative.

So, then you do everything you can to hypothesize reasons why you are seeing what you are. I have been a physician for 30 years and that experience plays a huge role as well. Having this gigantic number of breakthrough cases just simply does not happen. I continue to see more than half the cases in vaccinated patients and so do many others. UNHEARD OF IN VACCINES BEFORE NOW. Part of hypothesizing why is looking to the literature for evidence. Seldom is this found in RCT at this stage. Case reports and series like this paper are critical. They are seeing the same breakthrough ratio. And they have done a lot more viral research than you can. This is a gold mine for my own questions.

Is there anything in the paper that could possibly explain what I am seeing. Lots of times, it is not in the headline part but in all the test results and discussion. And yes, there is a very important finding deep in the results. Why would clustering and sicker patients be so much more common in the breakthrough patients. – there must be a reason for that? If you look at the brief discussion of cT or cycle threshold you will see that the vaccinated patients have a SIGNIFICANTLY lower cT than the unvaccinated. That is the way the PCR test works. It basically means the vaccinated have a much higher amount of viral active particles than the unvaccinated. That would account for the breakthroughs I and my colleagues are seeing being a bit more ill. And it would explain the clustering.

The vaccinated breakthroughs have much higher viral load so they are much more contagious and the higher viral load makes them more symptomatic. So we now have a suggestion and strong evidence that the vaccinated population may be spreading much more virus than the unvaccinated. I would say that is a critical public health issue and must be further researched immediately. This Certainly needs much more work. THis is not confirmatory of any conclusions. But it is consistent with observation on the ground – unlike most of what the media has been spewing to the American people. But this is how science works. This paper is about the gamma variant but a conference yesterday with experts discussed that similar findings were being found in delta and lambda.

The suggestion in this paper is now on the front of my mind. I am even now thinking of ways to confirm or falsify these conclusions going forward. This is science. Another issue. The writers make the point that the breakthrough rate is extremely divergent from the expected rate. The difference is this paper documents what is happening in REAL LIFE. So much of what we are hearing on our media about vaccine efficacy is research being done in vitro. It is presented as gospel truth. I just want to scream.

Read more …

Maybe the next big wave after Delta will make people listen to VanDen Bossche.

A Last Word of Caution (VanDen Bossche)

The current expansion in prevalence of infectious Sars-CoV-2 variants is highly problematic because it erodes natural Ab-based, variant-nonspecific immunity in the non-vaccinated part of the population. The high infectivity rate that results from this expansion not only further enhances the expansion of these variants but may also drive natural selection of viral variants that are featured by an even higher level of infectiousness. Erosion, therefore, of natural Ab-based, variant-nonspecific immunity promotes breeding and transmission of more infectious viral variants in the non-vaccinated part of the population. On the other hand, mass vaccination promotes natural selection of increasingly vaccine immunity (VI)-escaping variants in the vaccinated part of the population.

Taken together, mass vaccination conducted on a background of high infectivity rates enables more infectious, increasingly VI-escaping variants to expand in prevalence. This evolution inevitably results in inclining morbidity rates in both, the non-vaccinated and vaccinated population and precipitates the emergence of circulating viral variants that will eventually fully resist vaccine-mediated immunity (VMI). This is why mass vaccination campaigns should not be conducted during a pandemic of a highly mutable virus, let alone during a pandemic of more infectious variants (unless transmission-blocking vaccines are used!). It is critical to understand that a rapid decline in viral infectivity rates that is not achieved by natural infection but merely results from expedited mass vaccination campaigns will only delay abrupt propagation of emerging, fully vaccine-resistant viral variants and hence, only delay the occurrence of a high wave of morbidity and mortality.

In contrast, mass vaccination campaigns that are progressing more slowly, especially when conducted on a background of relatively low infectious pressure, will result in a steadily growing propagation of increasingly VI-escaping variants and hence, cause a wave of morbidity and mortality that continues to grow bigger and larger as more and more people become vaccinated. It’s only when fully vaccine-resistant viral variants will become dominant that this wave will start to peak. To prevent more detrimental consequences of the ongoing evolution of Sars-CoV-2, we have no choice but to mitigate erosion of natural, Coronavirus (CoV)-nonspecific immunity in non-vaccinated individuals and exertion of strong immune selection pressure on immunodominant vaccinal epitopes in vaccinated individuals.

This is to say that we must stop mass vaccination and lower viral infectivity rates immediately. Continued mass vaccination will only lead to a further increase in morbidity and hospitalization rates, which will subsequently culminate in a huge case fatality wave when expansion of more infectious, vaccine-resistant variants will explode.

Read more …

No kidding.

Journalists: Covid-19 News ‘Censored’ To Create ‘One Official Narrative’ (PG)

Elijah, who came up with the group’s name and found it “therapeutic” to talk to others with the same concerns, told Press Gazette: “It’s been unprecedented the way Covid-19 has been reported in the UK but not just in the UK, worldwide. “There’s only been one official narrative played out in the mainstream media and that has not changed over time. “There’s only been one ‘scientific truth’ allowed to be discussed: the one endorsed by worldwide governmental regulatory bodies, even that has been very selective. This has given the public a distorted view of the truth which has been highly damaging.” Elijah said her biggest concern was about “censorship” of information online that goes against this narrative and referred to the Trusted News Initiative, through which the BBC, other publishers and tech giants flag up the most dangerous disinformation to each other.

“For a long time, we’ve been in this dark era of censorship that’s been embodied by the Trusted News Initiative which cuts across big tech and all mainstream media,” she said. “It’s been packaged around this war on disinformation or misinformation- where anything that’s gone against the official narrative has not just been ‘fact checked’ but has been suppressed or removed.” Ex-BBC radio journalist Gosling told Press Gazette he had interviewed two doctors who shared counter-narratives – Dr Tess Lawrie of the Evidence-based Medicine Consultancy in Bath who called for early treatment to take place post-Covid diagnosis, and Florida-based immunologist Dr Stanley Laham who called for the use of ivermectin and warned against the use of the approved but “experimental” vaccines – but that both were removed from Youtube on grounds of misinformation.

Gosling said he wanted to speak out against fear-inducing and sometimes inaccurate coverage. He pointed as one example to a BBC Newsround segment last month in which a contributor claimed the Pfizer vaccine was “100% safe” for 12 to 15-year-olds. Gosling submitted a complaint about the “shocking” and “disgusting” claim and the BBC has since removed the claim from the online article and video and published a correction. Gosling said: “Our main concern is that there’s a very powerful lobby behind many of these Covid measures, including treatment, lack of treatment and vaccines, obviously, but there isn’t much of a lobby in the other direction. And I think most of us feel that our employers of various sorts have not been representing both sides.”

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“Deaths began to fall in February. After March 1 – when only 1 in 13 Americans were fully vaccinated – they plunged further. In the five months since, perhaps 80,000 people have died from (or with) Covid – fewer than died in January alone.”

Here We Go Again (Berenson)

But as I said, even putting aside the issue of how we classify the partially vaccinated, Fauci and Murthy lied about what percentage of coronavirus deaths are now occurring in FULLY vaccinated people. It is much higher than the sub-1 percent figures they offered. This fact should have been obvious to anyone who has seen the data from England, Scotland, and Israel. Those countries vaccinated a greater percentage of their populations more quickly than the United States. They have also been much more transparent about reporting hospitalizations and deaths among vaccinated people. And in all three countries, hospitalizations and deaths have spiked since May – and vaccinated people have accounted for more than HALF of all deaths recently.

The difference does not come from the type of vaccines, either. Israel used only the Pfizer vaccine, which until recently was considered the better of the two mRNA vaccines. The United Kingdom gave many Pfizer doses too. So the comments from Fauci and Murthy defied credibility – how could other countries have so many more deaths in their vaccinated populations? The answer is that Fauci and Murthy are – intentionally – using the wrong denominator. They say “now” or “are.” But they are comparing deaths among the fully vaccinated – which have essentially been an issue only since May – with ALL deaths beginning from the day the United States offered its FIRST vaccine dose (or even possibly from the beginning of the epidemic).

The United States has had roughly a quarter-million deaths from Covid this year (the CDC reports 216,000, a number that will rise somewhat). It has had closer to 300,000 since the first dose was offered on Dec. 14. But more than half those deaths occurred in December and January, when essentially no one was fully vaccinated. Not even 2 percent of Americans were fully vaccinated as of February 1. Deaths began to fall in February. After March 1 – when only 1 in 13 Americans were fully vaccinated – they plunged further. In the five months since, perhaps 80,000 people have died from (or with) Covid – fewer than died in January alone.

Vaccine advocates rarely acknowledge the fact that deaths started dropping long before most people had received shots. In reality, even acknowledging that many people who received vaccines in January and February were older and vulnerable, seasonality and herd immunity seem to have had a greater impact on broad Covid trends than vaccinations.

Read more …

But are noted as Covid admissions.

Most Covid Patients In UK Hospitals Only Tested Positive After Admission (ZH)

Over half of those hospitalized with Covid-19 in the UK only tested positive after admission – suggesting that “vast numbers are being classed as hospitalised by Covid when they were admitted with other ailments, with the virus picked up by routine testing,” according to The Telegraph, citing leaked government figures. The takeaway? Oft-cited statistics published daily may far overstate Covid hospitalizations – and consequently, pressures on the National Health Service (NHS).

“The leaked data – covering all NHS trusts in England – show that, as of last Thursday, just 44 per cent of patients classed as being hospitalised with Covid had tested positive by the time they were admitted. The majority of cases were not detected until patients underwent standard Covid tests, carried out on everyone admitted to hospital for any reason. Overall, 56 per cent of Covid hospitalisations fell into this category, the data, seen by The Telegraph, show. Crucially, this group does not distinguish between those admitted because of severe illness, later found to be caused by the virus, and those in hospital for different reasons who might otherwise never have known that they had picked it up.” -Telegraph

In June, UK health officials instructed NHS trusts to provide “a breakdown of the current stock of Covid patients” between those who were hospitalized primarily for Covid and those admitted for other reasons. Thus far, the NHS has failed to publish this now-leaked information. Breaking it down, out of more than 780 hospitalizations dated last Thursday, 44% tested positive within 14 days prior to admission, while 43% tested positive within two days of admission, and 13% tested positive ‘in the days and weeks that followed’ – including those likely to have caught the virus in the hospital. “Experts said the high number of cases being detected belatedly – at a time when PCR tests were widely available – suggested many such patients had been admitted for other reasons,” according to the report.

Read more …

Plasma.

A Long-term Perspective On Immunity To COVID (Nature)

Immunological memory is not a long-lasting version of the immediate immune reaction to a particular virus; rather, it is a distinct aspect of the immune system. In the memory phase of an immune response, B and T cells that are specific for a virus are maintained in a state of dormancy, but are poised to spring into action if they encounter the virus again or a vaccine that represents it. These memory B and T cells arise from cells activated in the initial immune reaction. The cells undergo changes to their chromosomal DNA, termed epigenetic modifications, that enable them to react rapidly to subsequent signs of infection and drive responses geared to eliminating the disease-causing agent4. B cells have a dual role in immunity: they produce antibodies that can recognize viral proteins, and they can present parts of these proteins to specific T cells or develop into plasma cells that secrete antibodies in large quantities.

About 25 years ago5, it became evident that plasma cells can become memory cells themselves, and can secrete antibodies for long-lasting protection. Memory plasma cells can be maintained for decades, if not a lifetime, in the bone marrow6. The presence in the bone marrow of long-lived, antibody-secreting memory plasma cells is probably the best available predictor of long-lasting immunity. For SARS-CoV-2, most studies so far have analysed the acute phase of the immune response, which spans a few months after infection, and have monitored T cells, B cells and secreted antibodies7. It has remained unclear whether the response generates long-lived memory plasma cells that secrete antibodies against SARS-CoV-2.

Turner and colleagues took up the challenge of identifying antibody-secreting memory plasma cells in the bone marrow of people who have recovered from COVID-19 (called convalescent individuals). Memory plasma cells are rare, and those specific for a particular disease-causing agent will obviously be extremely scarce. Nevertheless, Turner and colleagues detected memory plasma cells that secreted antibodies specific for the spike protein encoded by SARS-CoV-2 in 15 of 19 individuals, approximately 7 months after infection. Notably, when the authors obtained samples 4 months later (11 months after SARS-CoV-2 infection), the number of such plasma cells had remained stable in all but one of the individuals analysed. Those plasma cells did not proliferate, which classifies them as bona fide memory plasma cells. Their numbers equalled those of memory plasma cells found in the individuals after vaccination against tetanus or diphtheria, and which provide long-term immunity to those diseases.

When Turner et al. tracked the concentrations of antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 in the individuals’ blood serum for up to one year, they observed a biphasic pattern (Fig. 1). In the acute immune response around the time of initial infection, antibody concentrations were high. They subsequently declined, as expected, because most of the plasma cells of an acute immune response are short-lived. After a few months, the antibody concentrations levelled off and remained more or less constant at roughly 10–20% of the maximum concentration observed. This is consistent with the expectation that 10–20% of the plasma cells in an acute immune reaction become memory plasma cells5, and is a clear indication of a shift from antibody production by short-lived plasma cells to antibody production by memory plasma cells. This is not unexpected, given that immune memory to many viruses and vaccines is stable over decades, if not for a lifetime8.

Figure 1 | The immune response to SARS-CoV-2 infection. Data are becoming available that shed light on longer-term aspects of the human immune response to coronavirus infection. One component of the defence response is the production of antibodies that target viral proteins (red line). During the initial, acute phase of the immune response, antibody levels peak rapidly; this peak is generated by short-lived immune cells called plasma cells. Turner et al.1 present clinical evidence, from people who have had COVID-19, that long-lived, memory plasma cells that produce antibodies are generated in the bone marrow. These cells provide long-term antibody production that offers stable protection at a level of 10–20% of that during the acute phase (blue line). Memory plasma cells are a cell type that can be maintained for many years, if not a lifetime. Wang et al.2 have characterized antibody responses at between six months and a year in people who have been infected with SARS-CoV-2; their results also provide evidence for the generation of immunological memory.

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Where finance and Covid meet. These guys are good at spotting trends.

Decline In UK COVID Cases Signals Coming “Inflection” For US (ZH)

Just one week ago, as Dr. Anthony Fauci was cranking the Delta variant “fearmongering” up to 11 once again, JPM’s Croatian quant Marko Kolanovic was telling the bank’s clients that a looming inflection point for new cases in the UK (widely seen as a leading indicator for the direction of new cases in the US) would soon arrive, kick-starting demand for value stocks and reopening plays. Although Kolanovic is a Wall Street quant, not an epidemiologist, it turns out his view was correct. Because one week later, the number of new cases being confirmed in the UK and EU has fallen, even as the UK’s “Freedom Day” has come and gone. Deutsche Bank’s Jim Reid described the decline in new cases in the UK “nothing short of remarkable”.

According to Reuters data, the number of new cases fell for a sixth consecutive day, to 24,950 on Monday from 29,173 on Sunday. The total number of new cases over the past week, at just over a quarter of a million, is more than 20% lower than the prior week. While the UK’s economy-crippling “pingdemic” continues, and many have continued to isolate, meaning the UK is still a way’s away from achieving a return to “normality”. Additionally, despite the fast rise of cases to near peak levels, mortality is currently 95% lower than during the January peak. This should give confidence to investors that delta is not a serious threat to global growth. If the US follows the template of the UK, daily cases might be peaking in the next 12 days…while we think Energy-Epicenter stocks are going to start to rally beginning this week.

While the Delta variant continues to dominate “our discussions with clients,” Kolanovic claimed that fears about the variant are overblown. The UK, he added, appears to be following a timeline similar to what the world saw in India. This should give confidence to investors that Delta isn’t a serious threat to global growth. Well, that and the drop in mortality. Speaking of markets, Kolanovic suggested that this is the start of a rotation into cyclicals. Some might be tempted to attribute the drop in UK cases to a fluke, or the pingdemic, or some other factor. But as Kolanovic reminds us, the trajectory of India’s recent COVID flareup (the first national outbreak to be caused by the delta variant) was similarly swift, as JPM illustrates with a handy chart.

Read more …

Censorship is everywhere. Because it offers total control.

In a Hall of Mirrors You Have To Break Some Glass To See Clearly (Kunstler)

I’ll tell you what’s really funny: the new Sam Harris “Making Sense” podcast with Dr. Eric Topol, veep of Scripps Research. These two just can’t make sense of why the folks outside their Southern California smuggery bubble have any reservations about getting vaxed-up against Covid-19. It’s like a mental illness to them — all these selfish, Trump-driven, flag-smooching ignoramuses beyond the pale of Wokery, who are putting at risk their science-loving betters in the PhD hives of the New Normal, while that King Kong of Covid variants (code-name Delta) rages through the hillsides and canyons beneath Mulholland Drive. The insolence! Can’t these morons just follow simple instructions (available 24/7 at CNN)?

Okay, here’s why, Sam and Eric: Because every institution in American life has squandered its credibility in the service of a political program that seeks to destroy whatever used to be worth caring about in Western Civ, including free thought, free speech, free inquiry, free movement, truth, beauty, and the right to resist official coercion. Half the country has no trust in the government’s public health apparatus, led by the — shall we say — slippery Dr. Anthony Fauci. Should they believe NPR? The New York Times? CBS-News? Should they follow every bob and judder of Rachel Maddow’s Adam’s apple? Should they swallow every globule of obvious horse-shit served up by Jen Psaki?

Hey Sam and Eric, have you followed what went on in the US Department of Justice and the FBI the past five years, these supposed redoubts of rectitude? The manufactured “Russian Collusion” hoax? The official lying to FISA courts? The malicious prosecutions? The transparently seditious activities of CIA agent Eric Ciaramella & Co.? The hiding of Hunter Biden’s evidence-stuffed laptop? The enlistment of Facebook, Twitter, and Google in suppression of the news and censorship of opinion? Do you expect people to believe that the basement-haunting “Joe Biden” won an election with those slim victories in the Wokester-controlled, fraud-drenched city precincts of Philadelphia, Atlanta, Milwaukee, and Detroit? Or that Merrick Garland and Christopher Wray wouldn’t lie about it?

Read more …

Pelosi helping Putin ridicule America.

The Jan. 6th Show Trials Threaten All of Us (Ron Paul)

The recent felony conviction and eight month prison sentence of January 6th protester Paul Hodgkins is an affront to any notion of justice. It is a political charge and a political verdict by a political court. Every American regardless of political persuasion should be terrified of a court system so beholden to politics instead of justice. We’ve seen this movie before and it does not end well. Worse than this miscarriage of justice is the despicable attempt by the prosecutor in the case to label Hodgkins – who has no criminal record and was accused of no violent crime – a “terrorist.” As journalist Michael Tracey recently wrote, Special Assistant US Attorney Mona Sedky declared Hodgkins a “terrorist” in the court proceedings not for committing any terrorist act, not for any act of violence, not even for imagining a terrorist act.

Sedky wrote in her sentencing memo, “The Government … recognizes that Hodgkins did not personally engage in or espouse violence or property destruction.” She added, “we concede that Mr. Hodgkins is not under the legal definition a domestic terrorist.” Yet Hodgkins should be considered a terrorist because the actions he took – entering the Senate to take a photo of himself – occurred during an event that the court is “framing…in the context of terrorism.” That goes beyond a slippery slope. He is not a terrorist because he committed a terrorist act, but because somehow the “context” of his actions was, in her words, “imperiling democracy.” In other words, Hodgkins deserved enhanced punishment because he committed a thought crime.

The judge on the case, Randolph D. Moss, admitted as much. In carrying a Trump flag into the Senate, he said, Hodgkins was, “declaring his loyalty to a single individual over the nation.” As Tracey pointed out, while eight months in prison is a ridiculously long sentence for standing on the floor of the “People’s House” and taking a photograph, it is also a ridiculously short sentence for a terrorist. If Hodgkins is really a terrorist, shouldn’t he be sent away for longer than eight months?

Read more …

 

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Fauci masks

 

 

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Jul 132021
 
 July 13, 2021  Posted by at 12:43 pm Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , ,  24 Responses »


Damien Hirst Renewal Blossom 2018

 

 

This is an essay I picked up in a publication from Sri Lanka. The author, Omar Khan, a “global consultant”, is not a blank sheet, he even appears in stories about a Ponzi scheme defrauding rich Wall Streeters in a wine set-up. But here, he asks a lot of the right questions, in a kind of summary of what we have been asking -and stating- for a long time now.

 

 

Omar Khan: Life has to be our dedication, not virus eradication. We are custom designed biologically and perhaps providentially to transcend viral challenges and pathogens, when we use our immunological hardiness, our medical acumen and data-based (not hypochondriacal) prudence.

 

 

The popular narrative reeks so pungently that we almost have to keep debunking these absurdities to dispel the trance that too many seem to be under.

 

C-19: It’s novel, it’s new, it’s unprecedentedly dangerous! 

No, it’s not! There is a family of coronaviruses. To that extent, this may have been ‘new’ and ‘novel, but not in any way to suggest that either our immune systems or our medical science was dealing with some uniquely implacable foe. Furthermore, it seems to have been circulating from the latter half of 2019. Medical researchers have repeatedly confirmed there were both examples of pre-existing immunity and crossover immunity due to prior immunological experience with similar pathogens. And now data clearly shows this was nothing unprecedented. 

 

It is primarily spread by droplets and infected surfaces

No, it isn’t. It is an airborne virus, and flourishes in congested, poorly ventilated indoor spaces, and is spread by minute particles. Ergo, being ‘locked’ in is simply insane. Even the US CDC confirms, there is roughly 1 in 10,000 chance of being infected by touching a surface. So, all this mass sanitising and social distancing was more kabuki theatre than anything else.

 

Everyone is equally at risk! 

No, they’re not! This is highly age stratified. Certainly, in the developed world, 93%+ of the deaths are above 70. There is a remarkably good recovery rate above 70, close to 97% for those without serious comorbidities. Another 6 to 10% fall within the ages of 40 to 69 (again, the majority with existing preconditions we are told by meta-analysts at leading universities) and below 40 the mortality rate gets increasingly nominal and infinitesimal. 

 

There is no treatment

Yes, there is! There is, of course, the Nobel Prize winning, WHO essential drug, Ivermectin There are studies, randomised trials, overwhelming front line clinical experience from around the world all testifying to its saving graces. There is also HCQ and Zinc, Corticosteroids, Monoclonal Antibodies, Vitamin D3, Budesonide and numerous others that are part of demonstrably effective, early treatment protocols. If treated early during the viral stage, leading doctors in the US, UK, Zimbabwe, India, Mexico, South Africa confirm virtually every symptomatic patient can be saved. 

Overall, even including the inflammation and thrombosis phase of the illness (when it becomes successively more dangerous) the most effective protocols have shown 85 to 90% reduction in hospitalisation and deaths. There is no sane reason not to embrace this, demonstrate it, and crystallise a Sri Lanka protocol drawing on the best of the rest.

 

Natural immunity cannot save us

Yes, it can! We would not be alive today if natural immunity did not work. Virtually all past vaccinations have taken place after a pandemic has waned somewhat because those actual vaccines did not get fast tracked past animal trials and safety trials. 

Every credible study reconfirms our immunological wisdom has always trumpeted. Namely immunity is long lasting. And while there is no guarantee no one will ever get re-infected, even that is extremely rare, with virtually no documented global cases. And when it does happen, it is substantially milder and our immune memory in terms of mobilising to deal with the pathogen becomes ever more profound. And that, indeed, seems to last a lifetime. 

Despite the seesawing medical vacillations of an increasingly confounded WHO, natural immunity trumps any vaccine-based immunity. And in the case of the current crop, the “vaccines” have been focused on suppressing symptoms and do not lead to the sustained immunological template that natural immunity confers (by their own admission). Despite this still being distorted in their description, at least natural immunity is back on the WHO website after having been pulled from there in an almost comic panic spasm. 

 

Asymptomatic people drive the disease, and so, we must lock everyone up

They don’t and we shouldn’t! Asymptomatic transmission is a dud, has not been demonstrated to be in evidence except where people’s immune systems are naturally dealing with the infection, in which case, they are not transmitting. Children, for example, fall within this description, and have not been shown to be vectors of transmission. This has been shown both in open schools in Florida and in Sweden where they stayed open throughout. 

Therefore, it may be necessary to revert to the unanimous pre 2020 consensus that said, ‘asymptomatic’ is really a euphemism for ‘healthy.’ Certainly ‘detecting’ an asymptomatic person based on highly fallible PCR testing is no basis to debunk centuries of medical consensus. Said PCR test anyway doesn’t test for live infectiousness, is not by itself (even as per WHO) diagnostic, and amplification settings are often set so high as to make the results almost a parody. And then lab contamination is often rife and viral debris can malinger long beyond any rational infection period. Other than that, we can swoon at its accuracy!

Ergo, locking up the healthy rather than allowing them to develop natural immunity if they are not in the vulnerable risk profile (which the majority are not) is oppressive, useless, society destroying and a form of protracted economic suicide. 

 

Everyone should be masked! 

No, they shouldn’t! In 2019 WHO had reviewed the 10 most seemingly credible mask studies, all of whom concluded masks don’t work in pandemic situations except in very crowded contexts and should not be used. This was also the conclusion up until the 2020 haemorrhage of medical sanity, of the US CDC, the European Medical Association, the Australian authorities, Johns Hopkins University and virtually everywhere else. There is no new research or any new studies that have led to this somersault. The only randomised trail done over this period, in Denmark, is consistent with all the earlier studies.

Dr. Frankenstein Fauci in his highly vocal emails disdains the use of such masks as well. The nano particles are too small for the masks to arrest anything. Anything other than respirators fitted to the face, which are not practical beyond a few hours, allow ready access to viral invaders, as we’ve said before. This is why one doesn’t use such masks to protect against anthrax, asbestos, black mould, all of which have larger particles. 

Masks are unhygienic, suppress oxygen flow, force you to inhale your own waste, and there are no long-term studies that demonstrate any efficacy or even confirm the safety of breathing in and out in such an encased, inhibited manner for a protracted period of time. Moreover, there’s the simple “live” case study of comparing open US states without mask mandates with those that are ‘muzzled,’ and one can see that there is no benefit in terms of mortality and overall results (on the contrary), other than totemic compliance and pathetic virtue signalling. 

By the way, there is not one recorded instance of outdoor transmission (even CDC accepts it is less than 1%). Therefore, unless you dislike breathing in oxygen there truly is no explanation for the endurance of this mad, sad ritual, when we are outside. 

 

Variants will haunt us forever

Who cares? Can we make our peace with the fact that viruses mutate? As explained before, former Chief Science Officer of Pfizer, Dr. Michael Yeadon, has pointed out that a variant is no more than 0.3% different than the original virus. And since we know immune systems that were earlier exposed (as Dr. Yeadon points out through medical testing), still recognise and immunologically rally when exposed again to the original SARS from 17 years ago – even though that is 20% different than SARS-CoV-2 – we can see how little we have to fear. These variants are simply the currently dominant strain, not some unknown predator. 

The current scaremonger, Delta, is actually welcomed by specialists like Dr. Harvey Risch of Yale and Dr. Peter McCullough of Baylor because it is so mild relative to mortality, and they say, among the most treatable variants they’ve encountered. So, despite PCR test spasms showing ‘surging cases,’ there has been virtually no impact on mortality. In fact, J.P. Morgan reports that in 10 out of 15 countries where Delta is dominant, even cases declined, and in 13 out of 15 countries, fatalities declined with vaccination percentages ranging from 32 to 63% of the population.

Even in the UK which has seen an uptick in mortality, as per government data, the case fatality rate hovers close to 0.3%

 

We must vaccinate everybody!

Actually, we need great caution! There are numerous early treatments. On that basis alone, the Emergency Use Authorisation (EUA) should be rendered illicit and inapplicable (this is why there are such desperate attempts to suppress and smear these treatments). So, the deaths and adverse effects recorded even in government databases (which confess to being between 1-20% of actuals) are greater than the cumulative total for all other vaccines since such tracking was undertaken, at least since 1995. 

The types of issues range from severe neurological damage, myocarditis, life threatening blood clots, fertility issues, tragic pregnancy consequences and too many others to itemise or catalogue. To this, a riposte is often given that these adverse effects correlate to vaccination but cannot be proven to have been ‘caused’ by the vaccine. 

But repeated conjunction between a stimulus (‘vaccines’) and a pattern of adverse phenomena closely accompanying all the vaccines, is precisely what, in more prudent and more transparent times, would simply, on the basis of the precautionary principle, lead to stopping this manic jabbing, to do a proper investigative assessment. 

Beyond that we now know that the spike proteins, even without the virus, are lethal and this is what we are injecting in the case of the mRNA vaccines primarily. They also do not stay localised and instead spread throughout our organs (SALK Institute study, autopsy plus repeated testimony by Dr Robert Malone, one of the founders of the mRNA technology – who has for the sin of sharing his expertise, had both his LinkedIn account erased and has had Wikipedia attempt to rewrite history by expunging his mRNA contribution from their site). These are horrifying concerns, and it is monstrous not to have addressed them, rather than cravenly attempting to whitewash them.

 

The spectre of censorship

There are great concerns re the pervasive censorship. Such desperate attempts to silence and muzzle don’t usually spring from confidence, or positions that have self-evident appeal. Just a smattering of examples: Norway was de-platformed from Tweeting disquiet about Astra Zeneca! Dr. Robert Malone, as indicated above, has accounts cancelled, and is removed from the Wikipedia author page (Joan of Arc may be next). 

Evolutionary biologist and visiting fellow at Princeton (Bret Weinstein) “demonetised” from YouTube (after over three million views) because some cabal somewhere, somehow decide what is or isn’t fit for our eyes and ears. And when and how did that judgment seat pass to them, otherwise than through financial string pulling by desperate vested interests, thereby confessing their impotence in terms of having a case to make? 

Noble Prize Winner Professor Satoshi Omura, whose discovery of Ivermectin as an anti-parasitic drug led to one of the world’s greatest public health achievements, was just censored for daring to opine that indeed he believes his discovery will be hugely beneficial for COVID treatment.

None of this is normal! Martin Kulldorff, one of the world’s leading epidemiologists, at a meeting with Florida Governor De Santis suggests that universal vaccination is not called for, the interview is scrubbed immediately, because our precious sensibilities cannot even have that “suggested”, even from someone whose expertise fully entitles him to share an assessment we should be desperately interested to at least consider.

Remember, all this is being mounted over an age stratified illness of low risk to virtually everyone. So, all the frenzy to demonise, the incentive for that, once more, cannot have been public health. 

Yes, four million people are purported to have died of COVID with all types of death certificate rigging. And if you say it’s normal for a positive test on a death certificate to translate into causation (and nothing of course re vaccine deaths can rise to “causation” unless a spike protein jumped out and confessed perhaps), I will ask why this logic is only, uniquely applied to this pathogen? Why were these norms so hurriedly “updated” after decades of normal causal logic holding sway, of recording the primary cause of death?

Yes, four million died over this period, and five million die of all-cause mortality every month, so about 85 million have perished over the same period. There is no interest in the other causes of mortality? Or those coming from deferred cancer screenings, heart conditions not attended to, overdoses and suicides, literally many millions more from starvation due to interrupted supply chains? 

 

Re-opening society: A call to action

We had three of the world’s most eminent doctors present to policy makers here, and the conclusions in terms of re-opening society and keeping it open are given below.

1. Keep society open, solvent, functioning and able to provide public health resources to its citizens as well as livelihoods. Lockdowns are penal, take a devastating human toll which only worsens, and as demonstrated, backfire, and data shows that conclusively around the world. They do not help given all transmission is indoor, most people are not at risk, and abundant early treatments exist for the symptomatic.

2. Keep people out of hospitals by providing early treatment, open air clinics, mobile clinics. If treatment is given early on, the period of infectiousness can be vastly reduced to as little as five days. Home treatment guides can be provided and contact information for resources that can provide telemedicine, drive by clinics, guidance, treatment and early support, should be widely circulated. We can actively benchmark experience with everything from ivermectin to monoclonal antibodies (now cleared for use in Sri Lanka through Roche) to protocols in South Africa by Dr. Chetty (4,000 patients, everyone has survived), including fascinating local remedies in Tamil Nadu that actually work. And thereby, as cited above, we can create a “Lankan protocol.”

3. Consider augmenting conventional PCR tests which have time lags as well as often not being able to confirm live infectiousness with some of the newer saliva-based antigen tests, some of which now have demonstrated 98% accuracy and can report results in 15 minutes, or as Singapore is suggesting, focus on the symptomatic and do proper lab diagnosis. Regardless though, focus on the mortality needle, not ‘positive tests’ posing as ‘cases’ as per the example of Sweden this spring (rising positive tests with consistently falling death numbers due to focused protection). Singapore is another example of this “disconnect” with 62,000 positive tests and 36 deaths. 

4. Prioritise the vulnerable elderly in any vaccination efforts as well as in terms of temporary sheltering in place or other measures to shield them from infection when community disease spread is high. 

5. Ensure people are encouraged when indoors to be in not overly congested, well ventilated spaces, especially the elderly and vulnerable. And also, to get plenty of time outdoors, UV rays and vitamin D from the sun, germicidal air as epidemiologist Knutt Wittowski stresses are well documented benefits with all viruses in synch with seasonality and plenty of exercise which helps the immune system and improves indicators re other aspects of health, including comorbidities. 

6. Please note Sri Lanka still has among the lowest deaths per million in the world, (roughly 156 per million). Pakistan has a fairly low deaths per million (roughly 102 per million) and even India, despite its recent surge has roughly 1/7th the deaths per million of the US and Europe. We should take advantage of being in this relatively charmed immunological corridor and find the will and courage to open society up, let natural immunity among those at nominal risk (based on age first and overall health next) help to build a wall of immunity and treat everyone with symptoms who needs help as early as possible, thereby fast-tracking C-19 migrating to endemic status. This was the overall consensus of our global panel.

 

Of possible concern

As we open our borders or open society back up (which we must), or have another seasonal surge, if we stay infatuated with positive tests rather than symptoms, we may again panic unnecessarily. We should recall, positivity in Delhi in early May was staggering and by week of 31 May was less than 1% which shows how quickly the tide can turn. 

Knowing we have this suite of treatments and prioritising the vulnerable for treatment and/or vaccination will assure us that even if there is a temporary surge, focusing on the symptomatic, we can handle it and there is nothing to fear. The alternative is perpetual, recurring, pointless lockdowns and having to act as if no other cause of harm or concern matters even though we lose many more lives here through car accidents, diabetes, heart attacks, in some seasons, dengue. Hunger, bankruptcy, deferred vaccinations for even more serious diseases that we were on our way to routing, destruction of education for children for whom it is their literal future, simply cannot be ignored as we chase, to the exclusion of all else, the unattainable phantom of ‘zero COVID’. 

Life has to be our dedication, not virus eradication. We are custom designed biologically and perhaps providentially to transcend viral challenges and pathogens, when we use our immunological hardiness, our medical acumen and data-based (not hypochondriacal) prudence.

 

 

 

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Jun 152021
 


Wassily Kandinsky Moscow Red Square 1916

 

COVID-19 Natural Immunity vs Vaccine Immunity (CureHub)
CDC: Heart Inflammation In Young Men Higher Than Expected After mRNA Jabs (R.)
University Vaccine Mandates Violate Medical Ethics (WSJ)
California Removes Most Restrictions But Newsom Keeps Emergency Powers (JTN)
Coronavirus Outpacing Vaccine Effort, Says WHO (G.)
Live Bats In Cages Kept In Wuhan Institute of Virology (News.au)
Zuckerberg Group Funnels 6 Figures To Wuhan Lab Partner (NP)
Vladimir Putin: ‘Don’t Be Mad At The Mirror If You’re Ugly’ (AP)
Putin: US Destroyers In Baltic, Black Seas a Missile Threat to Russia (Rozoff)
Chinese Nuclear Plant Warns Of ‘Imminent Radiological Threat’ After Leak (Hill)
Hunter Biden Invested Millions In Owner of Nuclear Plant Experiencing Leak (NP)
The Three-way Squeeze (Kunstler)
Reality Winner Released From Prison For ‘Exemplary Behavior’ (RT)
Babylon Bee Forces New York Times To Retract Calling Them ‘Misinformation’ (RT)
In Honor Of Pride Month, Biden Will Also Sniff Men’s Hair (BBee)

 

 

NBC: Do you remember your last meeting with Biden?


Putin: Well, I don’t recall our exact conversation, but I’m sure he has a good memory.

 

 

 

 

“With all three vaccines your immune system is only exposed to S RBD, therefore S is the only target available for an immune response. However, during natural infection your body is exposed to the entire virus, which includes the other 4 proteins coded in the SARS-CoV-2 genome.”

COVID-19 Natural Immunity vs Vaccine Immunity (CureHub)

The work presented here, in combination with other reports about immune protection in recovered individuals, provides justification for including natural immunity in COVID-19 herd immunity stats. It is important to remember the immune system is complex and has redundant and overlapping mechanisms. Antibody production against both the SARS-CoV-2 N and S proteins is just one example. The vaccines are indeed very effective, but so too is the human immune system. It would therefore be anti-science, and anti-data, to ignore the role that recovery from COVID-19 plays in protecting against reinfection and ongoing viral spread. Especially when deleterious decisions are being made in order to mitigate COVID-19 risk.


[..] COVID-19 vaccines are effective and induce a strong immune response. Cure-Hub’s own data shows high neutralizing antibody levels after vaccination, especially after the second mRNA dose. In fact, two doses of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines can push antibody production higher than natural infection. However, this does not mean vaccine induced immunity is superior to natural immunity. Below we provide evidence that recovery from natural infection generates a more diverse immune response. There are 5 proteins encoded in the viral genome: Nucleocapsid (N), Spike (S), Hemagglutinin esterase (He), Membrane (M) and Envelope (E). The most important protein is S, which the virus uses to enter human cells. By blocking S, SARS-CoV-2 cannot bind to the human ACE2 receptor and cannot cause an infection.

Due to S protein’s critical role in COVID-19 infection, it is the target for Pfizer, Moderna and J&J COVID-19 vaccines. Specifically, those vaccines are designed against the S protein receptor binding domain (RBD), which is the part that interacts with human ACE2. After vaccination your body produces antibodies that bind to S RBD. As a result you are protected from infection because the virus is neutralized before viral replication occurs. People who recover from a natural infection are also protected, because they too produce antibodies against S RBD. In fact, that is the immune system’s dominant target after infection. The key difference between the Pfizer, Moderna and J&J vaccines, and natural immunity, is the immune system’s starting material. With all three vaccines your immune system is only exposed to S RBD, therefore S is the only target available for an immune response. However, during natural infection your body is exposed to the entire virus, which includes the other 4 proteins coded in the SARS-CoV-2 genome.

Read more …

Oh well, at least it’s reached Reuters now, even if they’re not sharp.

CDC: Heart Inflammation In Young Men Higher Than Expected After mRNA Jabs (R.)

A higher-than-expected number of young men have experienced heart inflammation after their second dose of the mRNA COVID-19 shots from Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna, according to data from two vaccine safety monitoring systems, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said on Thursday. The CDC and other health regulators have been investigating heart inflammation cases after Israel’s Health Ministry reported that it had found a likely link to the condition in young men who received Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine. read more The agency said it is still assessing the risk from the condition and has not yet concluded that there was a causal relationship between the vaccines and cases of myocarditis or pericarditis.

While some patients required hospitalization, most have fully recovered from their symptoms, the CDC said. More than half of the cases reported to the U.S. Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) after people had received their second dose of either the Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna vaccines were in people between the ages of 12 and 24, the CDC said. Those age groups accounted for less than 9% of doses administered. “We clearly have an imbalance there,” Dr. Tom Shimabukuro, deputy director of the CDC’s Immunization Safety Office, said in a presentation to an advisory committee to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration meeting on Thursday. The overwhelming majority of the cases have occurred within a week of vaccination, Shimabukuro said.

There were 283 observed cases of heart inflammation after the second vaccine dose in those aged 16 to 24 in the VAERS data. That compares with expectations of 10-to-102 cases for that age range based on U.S. population background incidence rates, the CDC said. Shimabukuro said there was a predominance of males in younger age groups among the reported heart inflammation cases. The median age of patients who experienced the inflammation after a second vaccine dose was 24, according to the VAERS data. Just under 80% of the cases were in men.

Read more …

“College students aren’t guinea pigs.”

WSJ, so behind a paywall, which I don’t do, but this much is free. And it’s important that the WSJ writes on it.

University Vaccine Mandates Violate Medical Ethics (WSJ)

Some 450 U.S. colleges and universities—including our institutions—have announced policies mandating that all students be fully vaccinated against Covid-19 before the fall semester, with some requiring vaccination now for the summer term. Schools have for decades required vaccination against infectious diseases, but these mandates are unprecedented—and unethical. Never before have colleges insisted that students or employees receive an experimental vaccine as a condition of attendance or employment.

Even soldiers, whose rights are constrained when they join the service, aren’t being compelled to take a Covid vaccine. In a case involving a vaccine against anthrax, a federal district judge held in 2004 that “the United States cannot demand that members of the armed forces also serve as guinea pigs for experimental drugs” absent informed consent or a presidential waiver of service members’ legal protections. The following year the judge held that an emergency-use authorization from the Food and Drug Administration was insufficient to meet the legal test.

The FDA has issued such authorizations for three Covid vaccines, but it hasn’t fully approved any of them. Students at Notre Dame (for example) resume classes on Aug. 23, and freshmen arrive on campus Aug. 18. The Pfizer vaccine—first in line for approval—requires three weeks before the booster shot, so it would have to be approved by July 28 for students to meet the school’s deadline without making themselves experimental subjects. Pfizer applied to the FDA May 7 for “priority review,” a process that usually takes six months.

Universities might counter that—as with elementary schools requiring pediatric vaccinations—immunization is for students’ own good. But children can be at significant medical risks from the illnesses that we vaccinate them against, particularly when community vaccination rates are low. Not so with Covid. For those under 30, the risks of serious morbidity and mortality are close to zero. By contrast, early indications from passive surveillance systems (which call for follow-up investigation) and a June 10 review by the FDA’s Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee indicated an excess risk for heart inflammation, especially in men 30 and younger.

Read more …

“I believe it is time for him to hang up his crown and restore our democracy. In California, we don’t grow bananas, so there’s no need for a banana republic.”

California Removes Most Restrictions But Newsom Keeps Emergency Powers (JTN)

Even though Californians will be able to fill stadiums, concert venues, bars and restaurants, Gov. Gavin Newsom says the COVID-19 pandemic isn’t over. Newsom signed orders rescinding mask mandates, business restrictions and the tiered reopening phases that ebbed and flowed with infection and hospitalization rates, beginning Tuesday. “California is turning the page on this pandemic, thanks to swift action by the state and the work of Californians who followed public health guidelines and got vaccinated to protect themselves and their communities,” Newsom said earlier this month. The state’s “Beyond the Blueprint” doesn’t include Newsom relinquishing his emergency powers, which were bestowed to him by a declaration signed in March 2020 and repeatedly renewed since. “The emergency remains in effect after June 15,” Newsom said at a news conference.


“We’re still in a state of emergency. This disease has not been extinguished. It’s not managed. It’s not taking the summer months off.” What that means is that Newsom keeps his hand on the levers of government restrictions, including business closures and mask mandates, even though the consistent decline in infections and hospitalizations are at lows not seen since the beginning of the pandemic. It also opened Newsom, a Democrat facing a recall election, to criticism from Republicans who have labeled his restrictions as heavy-handed. “If Newsom believes the state is safe enough to reopen, then it’s safe for people to be able to make decisions for themselves without his arbitrary and capricious rules,” Senate Republican Leader Scott Wilk, R-Santa Clarita, said in a June 4 statement. “I believe it is time for him to hang up his crown and restore our democracy. In California, we don’t grow bananas, so there’s no need for a banana republic.”

Read more …

That’s the same WHO that lied about everything including bats in cages in Wuhan.

Coronavirus Outpacing Vaccine Effort, Says WHO (G.)

The World Health Organization has warned that Covid-19 is moving faster than the vaccines, and said the vow by G7 countries to share a billion doses with poorer nations was simply not enough. “This is a big help, but we need more, and we need them faster. Right now, the virus is moving faster than the global distribution of vaccines,” World Health Organization (WHO) chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told journalists. “More than 10,000 people are dying every day … these communities need vaccines, and they need them now, not next year.” Global health leaders also warned the pledge was too little, too late, with more than 11bn shots needed. Faced with outrage over disparities in jab access, the Group of Seven industrialised powers pledged during a weekend summit in Britain to take their total dose donations to more than a billion, up from 130m promised in February.


While people in many wealthy nations have some sense of normalcy thanks to their vaccination rates, the shots remain scarce in poorer parts of the world. In terms of doses administered, the imbalance between the G7 and low-income countries, as defined by the World Bank, is 73 to one. Many of the donated G7 doses will be filtered through Covax, a global body charged with ensuring equitable vaccine distribution. Run by the WHO, the Gavi vaccine alliance and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), it has so far shipped more than 87m vaccine doses to 131 countries – far fewer than anticipated. The WHO wants at least 70% of the world’s population vaccinated by the next G7 meeting in Germany next year. “To do that, we need 11bn doses. The G7 and G20 can make this happen,” said Tedros.

Read more …

“..new footage has revealed that live bats were kept in cages inside the Wuhan Institute of Virology – despite claims from the WHO that such a possibility was a “conspiracy”..”

Live Bats In Cages Kept In Wuhan Institute of Virology (News.au)

As G7 countries increase calls for a “phase two” investigation into the origins of Covid-19, new footage has revealed that live bats were kept in cages inside the Wuhan Institute of Virology – despite claims from the World Health Organisation (WHO) that such a possibility was a “conspiracy”. The infamous lab is at the centre of a theory – first spruiked by the likes of Donald Trump and Mike Pompeo – that Covid-19 wasn’t, as many scientists believe, transmitted from bats to people via an unknown intermediary, but was instead leaked, intentionally or not, from the institute. A joint WHO/China investigation into the origins of the disease first worked to dispel this line of thinking, calling the chance of a laboratory leak “extremely unlikely” and the idea that bats were held at the institute “an error”.

“No BATS were sent to Wuhan lab for genetic analysis of viruses collected in the field. That’s not how this science works. We collect bat samples, send them to the lab. We RELEASE bats where we catch them,” a member of the WHO team, zoologist Dr Peter Daszak, wrote in a December tweet. “This is a widely circulated conspiracy theory. This piece describes work I’m the lead on and labs I’ve collaborated with for 15 years,” he wrote in another. “They DO NOT have live or dead bats in them. There is no evidence anywhere that this happened. It’s an error I hope will be corrected.” But an official May 2017 video from the Chinese Academy of Sciences, obtained by Sky News, shows bats held in a cage at the institute four years ago and a scientist feeding a worm to one of the creatures.

Earlier this month, Dr Daszak appeared to walk back his earlier denials, writing on Twitter that the WHO team had not asked the institute if they housed bats. “We didn’t ask them if they had bats. I wouldn’t be surprised if, like many other virology labs, they were trying to set up a bat colony,” he wrote. “I know it’s happening in labs here and in other countries. You’re right, labs in US & around (the) world are trying to keep bats to test viral immune responses etc. “None are successfully doing this at scale like lab mice & animals are always screened virus-free before expts, (sic) so even if WIV were trying this, it’s prob irrelevant for origins.”

Read more …

Well, look who’s here…

Zuckerberg Group Funnels 6 Figures To Wuhan Lab Partner (NP)

The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative – the funding group behind much of the unlawful election changes of 2020 – gave nearly half a million dollars to the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. The university counts Wuhan lab collaborator and gain-of-function proponent Dr. Ralph Baric as a lead researcher. The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC) Professor – who has also attended conferences at the Wuhan Institute of Virology and is described by the lab’s “bat woman” as her “longtime collaborator” – received the grant from Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg’s philanthropic group in July 2020.

“The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI) recently awarded a $433,000 grant to UNC for laboratory equipment that will accelerate research to address the COVID-19 pandemic,” a press release notes. “This grant represents a new collaboration between the West Coast philanthropic organization CZI and UNC in search of a global solution to the pandemic,” a summary adds before detailing how the grant was used: “The grant covers the purchase of a “liquid handler” — a robotic arm that can pipette fluids much more quickly and accurately than humans can — and supporting instruments, including another robot that detects active virus particles in samples and a machine to sequence RNA. Together, these tools increase the rate of testing compounds by 20-fold.”

The grant allegedly helped produce a study – currently awaiting peer review – entitled SARS-CoV-2 infectious virus, viral RNA in nasopharyngeal swabs, and serostatus of symptomatic COVID-19 outpatients in the United States. “Here, we provide a comprehensive analysis of demographic, immunologic, virologic, and clinical disease factors associated with infectious virus isolation and levels of viral RNA in nasopharyngeal swab samples in the largest study of symptomatic outpatient adults with COVID-19 to date,” the summary notes.

A slide from a Baric presentation on the matter also listed support from Gilead Sciences, the National Institutes for Health, and Dr. Fauci’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease. Dr. Fauci recently attempted to cover-up his relationship with Zuckerberg by telling MSNBC host Chuck Todd he had “no idea” what Senator Marsha Blackburn was getting at when discussing the pair’s leaked e-mails.

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Running circles around Biden and his entire admin. Prepare for crazy media angles.

Vladimir Putin: ‘Don’t Be Mad At The Mirror If You’re Ugly’ (AP)

Vladimir Putin has accused the US of ‘persecuting political opinions’ for arresting the MAGA mob at the Capitol siege, ahead of his summit with Joe Biden on Wednesday. The Russian president was asked about his jailing of opposition leader Alexei Navalny in an interview filmed in Moscow last week before his meeting with Biden in Switzerland. And he replied by hitting back at the US, equating the arrest of Trump supporters who stormed the Capitol with his treatment of Navalny. He said: ‘We have a saying: ‘Don’t be mad at the mirror if you are ugly,'” he said. “It has nothing to do with you personally. But if somebody blames us for something, what I say is, why don’t you look at yourselves? You will see yourselves in the mirror, not us.’

‘You are presenting it as dissent and intolerance toward dissent in Russia. We view it completely differently,’ he told US broadcaster NBC News. He then pointed at the January 6 MAGA raid on the Capitol, saying: ‘Do you know that 450 individuals were arrested after entering the Congress? … They came there with political demands.’ Putin also reiterated denials that the Kremlin was behind last year’s poisoning of Navalny with a nerve agent that nearly killed him. ‘We don’t have this kind of habit, of assassinating anybody,’ Putin claimed. ‘Did you order the assassination of the woman who walked into the Congress and who was shot and killed by a policeman?’ Putin said, referring to Trump supporter Ashli Babbitt, who was fatally shot by a Capitol Police officer as she tried to climb through a window that led to the House floor.

Putin also sharply dismissed allegations that Russia is carrying out cyberattacks against the United States as baseless. ‘Where is the evidence? Where is proof? It´s becoming farcical,’ Putin said. ‘We have been accused of all kinds of things – election interference, cyberattacks and so on and so forth – and not once, not once, not one time, did they bother to produce any kind of evidence or proof, just unfounded accusations.’ In April, the United States announced the expulsion of 10 Russian diplomats and new sanctions connected to the so-called SolarWinds cyberattack in which several U.S. government branches experienced data breaches. U.S. officials blamed the Russian foreign intelligence service.

In May, Microsoft officials said the foreign intelligence service appeared to be linked to an attack on a company providing services to the U.S. Agency for International Development. Putin also laughed off Joe Biden’s claim he’s a ‘killer’ – heaping praise on Donald Trump before branding his successor a career politician. He was asked by the NBC interviewer Keir Simmons, ‘Mr President, are you a killer?’ Putin avoided directly answering, instead replying: ‘Over my tenure, I’ve gotten used to attacks from all kinds of angles and from all kinds of areas under all kinds of pretext and reasons and of different calibre and fierceness, and none of it surprises me.’ ‘So as far as harsh rhetoric I think this is an overall expression of US culture. Of course in Hollywood, there are some underlying deep things in Hollywood – macho, which can be treated as cinematic art. But that’s part of US political culture, it’s considered normal. By the way, not here, it is not considered normal here.’

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“That’s how wars and that’s how a nuclear catastrophe beyond a healthy mind’s powers of comprehension can occur. Sleepwalking into Armaggedon.”

Putin: US Destroyers In Baltic, Black Seas a Missile Threat to Russia (Rozoff)

In comments that got past editors in the Western news media, President Vladimir Putin in a recent Russian television interview accused the West of abusing what were good relations at the time (1999-2004) to expand NATO up to Russia’s borders. And in doing so, he specified, violated verbal pledges made by American officials to then-Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev, adding that the latter is alive and in good health and can confirm what he was told. In a candid assessment of the matter, Putin added, “I do not want to use harsh words, but they simply spat upon our interests and that’s that.” Lengthy excerpts of his comments were published on the English-language site of the government news agency TASS on June 9.

The most significant, and most alarming, aspect of the interview is the Russian president’s warning of Ukraine joining NATO, which contrary to what he acknowledged is a dismissal of that prospect by many experts in Russia and in the West he takes seriously, especially in regard to its membership providing the U.S. and NATO with new missile sites. Without naming them he mentioned that Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) missile defense (so-called) interceptors in Romania and Poland could strike Moscow in 15 minutes if a warhead was added to them; which, although the West denies its intent to do so, could be easily done. Russia has not been invited to inspect the missiles, for example. Paraphrasing the head of state, the TASS report disclosed the above threat is eminently practicable “because the missile defense launch systems stationed there can be used to carry out strikes as well.”

Installing SM-3s in Ukraine, Putin warned, would reduce the time needed to strike Moscow to 7-10 minutes. “Is it a red line for us or not?” he asked. He also drew the inevitable comparison with the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962, when he estimated Soviet missiles on that island nation could have hit Washington in 15 minutes, adding another parallel: “To lower this flight time to 7-10 minutes, we should station our missiles on Canada’s southern border or Mexico’s northern border. Is it a red line for the US or not?” Though perfectly transparent and accurate in all regards, his comments have been ignored and, if brought to people’s attention, would be dismissed. That’s how wars and that’s how a nuclear catastrophe beyond a healthy mind’s powers of comprehension can occur. Sleepwalking into Armaggedon.

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“..an “imminent radiological threat”, but “..environmental readings of the plant and the surrounding area are reported normal.”

Chinese Nuclear Plant Warns Of ‘Imminent Radiological Threat’ After Leak (Hill)

An operator of a Chinese nuclear plant has warned U.S. officials of an “imminent radiological threat” after a leak at the plant, multiple news outlets reported on Monday. In a letter obtained by CNN, the French operator of the Taishan Nuclear Power Plant, Framatome, told U.S. officials that Chinese authorities had raised radiation limits outside of the plants to avoid a potential shutdown. U.S. officials told Framatome that they don’t deem the current situation to yet be at a crisis level, according to CNN, but the National Security Council has already held meetings on this situation. Framatome issued a statement on Monday saying that they will support a resolution to the ongoing crisis at the plant.


“Our team is working with relevant experts to assess the situation and propose solutions to address any potential issue.” The owner of Framatome, Électricité de France, also issued a statement saying that they were informed of the rise of “certain rare gases,” even suggesting a board meeting to present data on the crisis The report comes as the U.S. joined other countries in the Group of Seven summit in the United Kingdom over the weekend, with China being one of the main focal points of the summit. The Taishan Nuclear Power Plant released a statement on their website on Sunday adding that the environmental readings of the plant and the surrounding area are reported normal.

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Well, look who’s here…

Is that why reports on the leak are so soft?

Hunter Biden Invested Millions In Owner of Nuclear Plant Experiencing Leak (NP)

A nuclear power plant believed to be experiencing a leak posing an “imminent radiological threat” is run by China General Nuclear Power Corporation: a state-owned firm that has enjoyed millions of dollars in investment from President Joe Biden’s son Hunter. Problems at the facility were exposed via a CNN report, which revealed that the plant’s French partner reached out to the White House for assistance: The warning included an accusation that the Chinese safety authority was raising the acceptable limits for radiation detection outside the Taishan Nuclear Power Plant in Guangdong province in order to avoid having to shut it down, according to a letter from the French company to the US Department of Energy obtained by CNN.


Despite the alarming notification from Framatome, the French company, the Biden administration believes the facility is not yet at a “crisis level,” one of the sources said. The Biden team’s lack of concern comes as the primary operator of the China-based plant – China General Nuclear Power Corporation (CGN) – counts millions in investment from Hunter Biden. BHR Partners – the private equity firm where Hunter Biden served as a director since 2013 – was a $10 million cornerstone investor in CGN’s initial public offering. Occurring in 2014, the IPO was the second largest of the entire year, valued at over $3 billion. The company, which Hunter Biden reportedly retains a sizable stake in, still lists GCN as part of its portfolio on its website.

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Jim also has a good take on the vaccines etc. (he reads TAE), but this is even more poignant:

“..you can see the horizon on the “Joe Biden” administration, with sunset probably due this fall. How it will play-out is anybody’s guess. Mine is that, one way or another, some military caretaker administration may have to interrupt the 232-year-long cavalcade of governance led by legitimately-elected presidents.”

The Three-way Squeeze (Kunstler)

For now, many places are supposedly caught up in the exuberant reopening of daily life activities: restaurants, travel-and-leisure businesses, big league sports. Sounds good, maybe, but the frothy feeling is belied by the still-boarded-up shopfronts and the expanding homeless campgrounds of the big cities and by the noises made by big corporations laying off thousands of employees. One narrative says that many service jobs go begging because too many people still receive government handouts that add up to more than such jobs pay. And some businesses, such as restaurants, say they are offering much higher wages than they used to in a desperate effort to keep operating.

Okay… but consider how long you can run a restaurant paying dishwashers $25-an-hour, for example, especially considering how much of the population is too broke now to eat in restaurants that charge a third-again as much for dinner as they did before Covid-19. What you’re actually looking at is a broken business model for much of the service industry. Sometime this summer, that pretty big problem will be acknowledged, and the nation will see that we are not in a recovery at all, but rather a permanent contraction that will be labeled “a depression.”

Actually, it will not be a “depression,” either, exactly, which implies a cyclical dip, even a big one, because the cycle itself is broken — and to understand that, you must delve into the nature of the long emergency: the energy resource and capital scarcity quandary facing techno-industrial societies. The direct implication of this broken cycle will be even more social distress, which is being aggravated by the racial provocations ginned up by the Woke “Joe Biden” regime, and which will blow up in its face if there is another summer of riots, burning, and looting.

So, to conclude this unusually long edition of the CFN blog, you can see the horizon on the “Joe Biden” administration, with sunset probably due this fall. How it will play-out is anybody’s guess. Mine is that, one way or another, some military caretaker administration may have to interrupt the 232-year-long cavalcade of governance led by legitimately-elected presidents. Perhaps we’ll run a re-do of the last election. Or maybe we’re in for a new phase of the American project, a more uncertain and less appetizing one, featuring dictators and despots. Or maybe we’ll get through this very dangerous defile of history and land in a much lower-key but more coherent disposition of things recognizably American. Stay tuned for developments.

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“President Biden owes Reality gratitude because Reality’s actions directly contributed to the fact that the 2020 elections were the most secure presidential elections in American history..”

Reality Winner Released From Prison For ‘Exemplary Behavior’ (RT)

Reality Winner, the former US intelligence specialist who was imprisoned in 2018 for leaking classified National Security Agency information to media outlet the Intercept, has been released from prison on good behavior.
Winner’s attorney Alison Grinter Allen announced her release on Monday, revealing that, though Winner is “still in custody in the residential re-entry process,” her family and friends are “relieved and hopeful.” “Reality and her family have asked for privacy during the transition process as they work to heal the trauma of incarceration and build back the years lost,” Allen said, adding that Winner’s “release is not a product of the pardon or compassionate release process, but rather the time earned from exemplary behavior while incarcerated.” The attorney said her client was prohibited from making public statements or appearances and thus could not comment on the matter.


Winner was sentenced to five years in prison in 2018 for leaking an NSA intelligence report to the Intercept that claimed Russian hackers had attempted to interfere with the US elections. The Intercept came under heavy fire at the time and was accused of improperly handling Winner’s confidentiality, which critics claim led to her arrest. Last week, Winner’s sister Brittany called on President Joe Biden to pardon the former intelligence specialist, arguing that Biden was only president “because of Reality Winner’s actions.” “President Biden owes Reality gratitude because Reality’s actions directly contributed to the fact that the 2020 elections were the most secure presidential elections in American history,” she said. “Mr. Biden is president because of Reality Winner’s actions and, therefore, he should pardon her.”

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Onion squared.

Babylon Bee Forces New York Times To Retract Calling Them ‘Misinformation’ (RT)

The Babylon Bee is in fact a satirical site and not a “far-right misinformation” one that “feuded” with Facebook and fact-checkers, The New York Times has finally conceded after being threatened with a defamation lawsuit. “This is huge. The NY Times was using misinformation to smear us as being a source of it,” Bee CEO Seth Dillon tweeted on Monday, calling it “malicious” behavior. “We pushed back hard and won. Thanks to everyone who voiced and offered their support. We don’t have to take this nonsense lying down. Remember that,” Dillon added. An article about Facebook censorship of irony in March, authored by the Times’ tech reporter Mike ‘Rat King’ Isaac, described the Bee as a “far-right misinformation site” that sometimes trafficked in fake news disguised as satire to avoid censorship from Big Tech.


It was the only example offered, too. After the initial complaint from Dillon, the Times edited the article to say that the Bee, “a right-leaning satirical site, has feuded with Facebook and the fact-checking site Snopes over whether the site published misinformation or satire.” That, too, was wrong. The update is every bit as damaging (and false) as the original,” Dillon tweeted at the time, and explained that Snopes has actually retracted their insinuation about the Bee’s motives, and even created a whole new label for satire. Snopes has also discontinued their fact-checking partnership with Facebook, in early 2019. A correction dated June 10 – of which the Times notified the Bee on Friday – now says the earlier version of the article “imprecisely” referred to the “right-leaning satirical website,” and that Facebook and Snopes have since dropped the claims the Bee ever trafficked in misinformation.

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Misinformation?!

In Honor Of Pride Month, Biden Will Also Sniff Men’s Hair (BBee)

In a televised address this week, President Biden voiced support for the LGBTQ community and promised to honor them with a commitment to not only sniff women’s hair, but also men’s hair. “Look– I’ve been sniffing the hair of women and girls for many decades,” said Biden. “It’s time for me to recognize the accomplishments of the LGBT folks. I’m maybe gonna get in trouble for this, but if you’re a man, I just may sniff your hair. That’s because I’m not homophobic. I ain’t afraid to sniff a dude! Come on, man!” Biden was then quickly led off the podium by his wife before he could say any more.


“Every gender! I’ll sniff ’em all!” Biden yelled, protesting as he was dragged out of sight of the crowd. According to sources, no gay men have taken up Biden on his offer to sniff their hair. However, hundreds of straight male journalists have lined up outside the White House clapping and cheering, hoping for their chance to be sniffed by the President. Brian Stelter went to bed crying, as he had no hair for President Biden to sniff.

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Map of North America in 1702

 

 

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Mar 262021
 


Vincent van Gogh Scène de rue à Montmartre 1887

 

Biden’s Press Conference: Get Ready For President Kamala Harris (Malic)
Better Not Vaccinate Everyone: The Virus Will Not Disappear Anyway (G.nl)
Herd Immunity Is Near, Despite Fauci’s Denial (WSJ)
US Lockdowns Didn’t Stop Covid – But That Doesn’t Mean They’re Pointless (F>)
CNN’s Defense of Cuomo’s Special COVID Privileges is Grotesque (Greenwald)
Secret Service Inserted Itself Into Case Of Hunter Biden’s Gun (Pol.)
Tesla & Bitcoin Are Perfect Bedfellows (Mitch Feierstein)
US Imports Record Volumes Of Russian Oil Amid Growing Political Tensions (RT)
The Impending Saudi Defeat in Yemen (MPN)
‘It Might Take Weeks’ To Free ‘Beached Whale’ Ship Stuck In Suez Canal (RT)
Free Us From The Roving Cavaliers of Credit (Steve Keen)

 

 

Boris Johnson, 2004

“If I am ever asked to produce my ID card as evidence that I am who I say I am, when I have done nothing wrong then I will take that card out of my wallet and physically eat it in the presence of whatever emanation of the state has demanded that I produce it”

 

 

Dana Carvey does Joe Biden

 

 

Actual Washington Post headline: “Biden Excels At His First News Conference. The Media Embarrass Themselves.”

Biden’s Press Conference: Get Ready For President Kamala Harris (Malic)

Well, now we know why Democrat strategists were more than happy to let Joe Biden sit in his basement during the campaign, and kept him away from the press for the first 64 days in office – and it’s definitely not the coronavirus. Biden was almost 15 minutes late to his own very first “formal press conference” since taking office. He dodged questions, spouted platitudes and talking points, went off on tangents at times while getting angry and uttering what may have sounded like threats at others. No doubt some of that could be down to his advanced age, but let’s assume for lack of another explanation that the words were indeed his and that he truly meant what he said. And, oh brother, is the US in trouble.

In Thursday’s presser, Biden actually repeated – twice – the previous day’s talking points, down to the description of someone “sitting at their kitchen table” in Central America, about why tens of thousands of migrants are coming to the US. He knows why, better than they do. Never mind that the tide began the day he was announced winner of the 2020 election, or the migrants who literally told reporters they decided to come because Biden got elected, or wear T-shirts with his campaign logo and the words “please let us in.” Nope, you’re supposed to ignore your lying eyes and believe Uncle Joe, because his great-grandfather had no choice but to leave Ireland in a “coffin ship.” What are you, a lying dog-faced pony soldier? Come on, man!

This sort of emotionally manipulative imagery is nothing new for Biden; he did it in the pandemic speech earlier this month, as well as his inaugural and his convention address. The press keeps falling for it, though, every single time. No wonder Dana Carvey was catching flak this week; his impersonation of Biden – not just his voice, but his mannerism and verbal tics – was spot on.

Tucker

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Google translate

These people must have read VadenBossche. We need much more discussion like this.

Also in Holland: GPs will now be fined for prescribing HCQ or ivermectin. As infection numbers are soaring back up to where they were early January.

Better Not Vaccinate Everyone: The Virus Will Not Disappear Anyway (G.nl)

Vaccinating children and young, healthy people against corona does not help. Group immunity is unfeasible, the corona virus will no longer disappear and will continue to appear in new variants. This is the opinion of Jona Walk, who recently obtained his PhD in vaccine immunology, and medical microbiologist Bert Mulder today in the magazine Medisch Contact. Both doctors of the Nijmegen Canisius-Wilhelmina Hospital therefore question the policy of the cabinet and health institute to vaccinate the entire population in order to return to “normal”. They are supported by a recent article “Five reasons why COVID herd immunity is probably impossible” in the leading scientific medical journal Nature.

Vaccinations can prevent people from becoming seriously ill and ending up in hospital, but it is an illusion to think that they also stop the virus from spreading. “Research done in Oxford shows that people can also be virus carriers after they have been vaccinated,” says Walk. More research needs to be done on this, but it is already clear that current vaccines do not work against all new variants of the virus. South Africa, for example, has already stopped using AstraZeneca because that vaccine does not work against the variant that is dominant there. “The effectiveness against that specific variant appears to be really zero,” says Mulder. The constant emergence of new variants therefore means that the vaccinations will be less effective in the future than appears at the moment.

“In fact, if a vaccine against a particular variant doesn’t work, only that version of the virus will continue to spread among people, and that refractory variant may eventually become dominant in the vaccinated population,” says Walk.“This happens especially if you vaccinate while a lot of virus is circulating, you create an ideal environment for new mutations,” Mulder adds. Walk: “The unnecessary vaccination is also against our medical principles. If you cannot become seriously ill from the virus and do not protect anyone with it when you get vaccinated, why would you run the risk of side effects that we are certainly not aware of in the long term? “” She points to the fact that for the time being there are only data on safety during the first two months after vaccination. Longer studies are needed to get a full picture of the benefits and risks.

“Another problem is that we do not yet know whether once someone has been vaccinated, they will later make good antibodies against other corona variants.” “A new vaccination against a new variant may therefore be less effective. “There is still a lot of research to be done in this area,” the researchers emphasize. But they are now coming up with their analysis because the vaccination policy is still aimed at vaccinating as many people as possible against corona by July. Mulder: ,, But we cannot eradicate corona. So you should rethink that policy: vaccinating only if someone benefits from it on an individual level, you should first focus on the elderly and at-risk groups and then look at who wants to be vaccinated further. “”

Ron Paul Testing

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Natural immunity.

Herd Immunity Is Near, Despite Fauci’s Denial (WSJ)

Anthony Fauci has been saying that the country needs to vaccinate 70% to 85% of the population to reach herd immunity from Covid-19. But he inexplicably ignores natural immunity. If you account for previous infections, herd immunity is likely close at hand. Data from the California Department of Public Health, released earlier this month, show that while only 8.7% of the state’s population has ever tested positive for Covid-19, at least 38.5% of the population has antibodies against the novel coronavirus. Those numbers are from Jan. 30 to Feb. 20. Adjusting for cases between now and then, and accounting for the amount of time it takes for the body to make antibodies, we can estimate that as many as half of Californians have natural immunity today.


The same report found that 45% of people in Los Angeles had Covid-19 antibodies. Again, the number can only be higher today. Between “half and two-thirds of our population has antibodies in it now,” due to Covid exposure or vaccination, Mayor Eric Garcetti said Sunday on “Face the Nation.” That would explain why cases in Los Angeles are down 95% in the past 11 weeks and the positivity rate among those tested is now 1.7%. Undercounting or removing the many Americans with natural immunity from any tally of herd immunity is a scientific error of omission. When people wonder why President Biden talks about limiting Fourth of July gatherings, it’s because his most prominent medical adviser has dismissed the contribution of natural immunity, artificially extending the timeline.

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“The University of Chicago researchers said their study reached a different conclusion because of differing methodology.”

But what a warped logic. Destroying economies was useless, but not pointless.

US Lockdowns Didn’t Stop Covid – But That Doesn’t Mean They’re Pointless (F.)

U.S. states with shelter-in-place orders and other strict Covid-19 rules did not report fewer infections and deaths last year, a study released Thursday argues, disputing other recent research about the pandemic—but this doesn’t mean social distancing efforts were ineffective. A team of researchers from the University of Chicago’s Harris School of Public Policy found states that imposed shelter-in-place orders, mandatory business closures and other tight restrictions didn’t see a significant difference in the number of coronavirus infections or deaths during the virus’ first U.S. surge last spring. Shelter-in-place orders also appeared to have very little impact on people’s mobility, which researchers measured using cell phone data.

However, researchers did not cast this as proof that social distancing is unnecessary: Instead, it could mean scores of Americans changed their habits regardless of whether their state imposed restrictions, often because health officials encouraged them to. Meanwhile, the effectiveness of social distancing measures was likely reduced because some people—partly due to politics—refused to comply with these efforts even if they came with a government mandate, the researchers noted in their paper, which was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The team said their results “should not be taken to imply that the actions of government officials had little effect on the pandemic.”

“To be clear, our findings do not mean that sheltering in place and social distancing behaviors had no effect on the disease,” the study’s authors wrote. “Indeed, the health benefits of [shelter-in-place] orders were likely limited because many people were already social distancing before the introduction of SIP orders.” This study contradicts two papers from last year—published in Nature and by the National Bureau of Economic Research—that found shelter-in-place orders significantly reduced Covid-19 infections in the United States and other countries, especially if they were imposed early. The University of Chicago researchers said their study reached a different conclusion because of differing methodology.

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While there were no tests available.

CNN’s Defense of Cuomo’s Special COVID Privileges is Grotesque (Greenwald)

Ever since the COVID pandemic subsumed most countries on the planet, there have been numerous scandals and controversies relating to those who corruptly obtain medical privileges and other exemptions unavailable to ordinary citizens. These scandals typically arise when someone uses their wealth, power or connections to jump in front of others for access to potentially life-saving procedures or medications or grant themselves and their friends license to ignore what everyone else must endure. Right now in Brazil, for instance, there is a burgeoning scandal from reports that a group of businesspeople with ties to the government arranged to purchase their own private stash of vaccines for use for themselves, families and friends in violation of the law.

In the U.S., people were outraged when very young members of Congress were among the first to receive the vaccine (though the law permitted them to do so); those young Congressmembers justified their line-jumping on the ground that they were doing so selflessly to encourage others. Meanwhile, other members of Congress refused this privilege on the ground, as Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) put it, that it is “shameful” for young lawmakers to believe they “are more important” than workers. Repeatedly in the U.S., politicians were caught exempting themselves from lockdown orders they were imposing on everyone else. But those pale in comparison to the abuse of power by Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-NY) and his brother, CNN host Chris Cuomo, as reported on Wednesday by The Albany-Times Union and The Washington Post.

“High-level members of the state Department of Health were directed last year by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker to conduct prioritized coronavirus testing on the governor’s relatives as well as influential people with ties to the administration,” reported the Times-Union. “Members of Cuomo’s family including his brother, his mother and at least one of his sisters were also tested by top health department officials — some several times,” it added. In particular, Gov. Cuomo abused state resources to ensure that his then-49-year-old brother, Chris, received fast COVID testing at a time when tests were very scarce. “The CNN anchor was swabbed by a top New York Department of Health doctor, who visited his Hamptons home to collect samples from him and his family,” The Post reported. The article also contains these damning details:

“The same doctor who tested Chris Cuomo, Eleanor Adams, now a top adviser to the state health commissioner, also was enlisted to test multiple other Cuomo family members….The coronavirus test specimens were then rushed — at times driven by state police troopers — to the Wadsworth Center, a state public health lab in Albany, where they were processed immediately, the people said. At times, employees in the state health laboratory were kept past their shifts until late into the night to process results of those close to Cuomo, two people said.” All of this commandeering of state resources to provide the CNN host with very specialized medical attention occurred while “media reports were full of accounts from New Yorkers desperate to get tested — including some with symptoms and recent travel history who were turned away because of scarcity.”

Cuomo brothers

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Still no sign of Hunter.

Secret Service Inserted Itself Into Case Of Hunter Biden’s Gun (Pol.)

On Oct. 23, 2018, President Joe Biden’s son Hunter and daughter in law Hallie were involved in a bizarre incident in which Hallie took Hunter’s gun and threw it in a trash can behind a grocery store, only to return later to find it gone. Delaware police began investigating, concerned that the trash can was across from a high school and that the missing gun could be used in a crime, according to law enforcement officials and a copy of the police report obtained by POLITICO. But a curious thing happened at the time: Secret Service agents approached the owner of the store where Hunter bought the gun and asked to take the paperwork involving the sale, according to two people, one of whom has firsthand knowledge of the episode and the other was briefed by a Secret Service agent after the fact.

The gun store owner refused to supply the paperwork, suspecting that the Secret Service officers wanted to hide Hunter’s ownership of the missing gun in case it were to be involved in a crime, the two people said. The owner, Ron Palmieri, later turned over the papers to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, which oversees federal gun laws. The Secret Service says it has no record of its agents investigating the incident, and Joe Biden, who was not under protection at the time, said through a spokesperson he has no knowledge of any Secret Service involvement. Days later, the gun was returned by an older man who regularly rummages through the grocery’s store’s trash to collect recyclable items, according to people familiar with the situation.

[..] At the time of the gun incident, Hunter was in a romantic relationship with Hallie, the widow of his late brother, Beau. The incident began when Hallie searched Hunter’s pickup, which was parked at her home in Wilmington, because of unspecified “suspicions she had,” according to the Delaware State Police report. Inside the truck, she found a .38 revolver. Hallie took the gun to Janssen’s Market, a nearby high-end grocery store where the Bidens are longtime regular customers. There, she tossed the gun, wrapped in a black shopping bag, into a trash bin outside of the store. Later that day, Hallie informed Hunter of what she had done, and he instructed her to retrieve the gun, according to the police report. When Hallie returned to the grocery store, she found that the gun was missing from the garbage bin and reported the issue to the store.

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“Tesla’s valuation will one day be a Harvard Business School study on the irrationality of market manias.”

Tesla & Bitcoin Are Perfect Bedfellows (Mitch Feierstein)

In 2021, Tesla has made over one billion dollars by speculating in bitcoin. That bet made bigger profits for Musk’s Tesla than the firm made selling its electric vehicles in a similar time frame (though, given its poor sales record, that’s perhaps not surprising). Now the multi-billionaire has created new headlines by announcing that the cryptocurrency will soon be accepted as payment for his cars, a move that saw the price of bitcoin enjoy a short-lived jump of almost 5%. There are some who say that Tesla and Bitcoin make perfect bedfellows. Both are decidedly risky ventures where you’re just about guaranteed to lose your whole wardrobe, let alone a shirt or two. Bitcoin has exhibited extreme volatility and has seen a stratospheric rise in its price during the past few months, hitting new highs approaching $60,000 and prompting some to claim it will go up by a further 500%.

Its surge illustrates how reckless central banks worldwide have destroyed fiat (paper) currencies that are backed by nothing other than a promise to repay debt by insolvent governments with a printing press. It signals a mania that will eventually see an end to US dollar hegemony. Bitcoin is binary – it can go to a million or zero – so no one speculating on it should risk what they cannot afford to lose. And as I’ve warned many times before: NEVER listen to the Musk-rat hype. It’s not the first time Musk has used Tesla’s balance sheet to speculate. In 2016, Tesla spent $2.6 billion bailing out one of his other companies, SolarCity, which was, according to Ernst & Young, completely insolvent.

Additionally, as chairman, CEO, CTO and majority shareholder of SpaceX, Musk used his position to leverage that company’s balance sheet by buying around $300 million of SolarCity bonds in 2015-16. In 2017, Tesla shareholders filed a lawsuit against the company’s directors and Musk. The basis of the lawsuit, according to Reuters, was: “Tesla shareholders have alleged Musk breached his fiduciary duties, squandered Tesla’s assets and unjustly enriched himself by pushing to buy the money-losing solar company in which he was the biggest investor.”

[..] Musk’s track record on autonomous driving, vehicle production numbers and Tesla profits has been abysmal. For example, Musk has said “Full Self Driving” hardware would be capable of a “coast-to-coast” autonomous trip by the end of 2017. In February of 2019, Musk promised, “Full self-driving would be available in 2020.” Tesla’s valuation builds in earnings from a non-existent robot taxi model. The point: Musk makes new bold claims nearly every quarter yet consistently fails to deliver. In fact, if it were not for the money Tesla has enjoyed from government subsidies and the selling of carbon-emission credits, the business would be profitless. Tesla’s valuation will one day be a Harvard Business School study on the irrationality of market manias.

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Ha ha ha.

US Imports Record Volumes Of Russian Oil Amid Growing Political Tensions (RT)

Tough talk on energy issues doesn’t stop the US from purchasing a record share of Russian crude in 2020. American refineries reportedly loaded 538,000 barrels of Russian crude and oil products daily, breaking a decade-old record. According to the data tracked by the US Energy Information Administration (EIA), the US has bought the most Russian crude since 2011, when the import volumes or Russian oil totaled 624,000 barrels per day (bpd). In 2020, Russia became the third-largest oil supplier to the US, outpacing Saudi Arabia, world’s biggest exporter, according to Bloomberg calculations based on customs and EIA data. Russia’s share of American oil exports currently stands at a record-high seven percent.


Meanwhile, Canada and Mexico were the leading exporters of crude to the US last year. Canada shipped 4.1 million bpd, while Mexico sold about 750,000 bpd. The average imports of oil from Saudi Arabia reportedly totaled just 522,000 bpd in 2020. The growth of oil exports from Russia was reportedly caused by the lack of access to Venezuelan crude, targeted by US sanctions. Moreover, shipments of crude from OPEC nations were significantly reduced amid the cartel’s pact on cutting output. US energy majors, including Exxon Mobil, Chevron and Valero Energy were among the key buyers of oil and petroleum products from Russian producers.

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Boeing and Raytheon will find another country to destroy.

The Impending Saudi Defeat in Yemen (MPN)

Major advances by Houthi forces on the strategically vital oil and gas hub of Marib last week have forced Saudi Arabia to offer a ceasefire agreement to the rebels. The offer came on Monday, after the rebel army seized Mount Hilan, threatening the Yemeni military’s first line of defense and causing a disruption in global energy prices. The ceasefire proposal includes collecting “taxes, customs and other fees generated” by oil imports in the Red Sea port of Hodeida in a joint account that would be accessible to the Houthis. Further evidence that the Saudi-led coalition finds itself with their backs against the wall is the partial loosening of the oil blockade, as four fuel ships were given the go-ahead to dock at Hodeida on Wednesday.

The bid for a truce came two days after Saudi Coalition-manned American warplanes carried out airstrikes against Houthi targets in Marib, with Saudi media claiming heavy losses on the side of the rebel forces. But the partial lifting of the blockade by the Saudi Coalition and the UN-backed Yemeni government indicates that it is the Houthis who are making headway. The fall of Marib would mean Houthi control of one of the key production centers of natural gas in Yemen — one that supplies the entire country — as well as oil fields owned by Saudi Arabia’s Aramco. Given that the Houthis already control most of Yemen’s urban centers, taking Marib would likely tilt the momentum irreversibly in the Houthis’ favor.

In light of the Houthis’ bolstered position in the conflict, Biden’s decision to remove them from the list of global terrorist organizations, while overtly maintaining continued U.S. support for Saudi Arabia’s “security” needs could very well be a signal that Washington has tacitly admitted that their proxy war in Yemen is not yielding the desired results. Meanwhile, in a joint statement, last week as preparations for Friday’s major attack on Marib were in the offing, Western governments attempted to make a show of strength in the press in lieu of actual results on the battlefield. “We, the governments of France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America,” said the statement, “condemn the sustained Houthi offensive on the Yemeni city of Marib and the major escalation of attacks the Houthis have conducted and claimed against Saudi Arabia.”

UNHCR Yemen

Read more …

March 25 11 AM EST: QUEUE OF SHIPS WAITING AT SUEZ CANAL NOW STANDS AT 237

‘It Might Take Weeks’ To Free ‘Beached Whale’ Ship Stuck In Suez Canal (RT)

The firm working to dislodge the container ship that’s blocking traffic in the Suez Canal has warned that “it might take weeks” to free the tanker, comparing it to trying to remove “an enormous beached whale.” The vessel, ‘Ever Given’, operated by Taiwan-based firm Evergreen, became lodged diagonally in the canal on Tuesday morning after losing control and running aground amid high winds, bringing traffic through one of the world’s busiest shipping channels to a halt. The CEO of Boskalis, a dredging firm that is working to try and free the ship, warned on Thursday that it “can’t exclude [that] it might take weeks,” as they may have to reduce the weight of the vessel, removing containers, oil and water, as well as using tug boats and clearing sand and mud from around it.


“It is like an enormous beached whale. It’s an enormous weight on the sand.” The 220,000-ton vessel was partially refloated on Wednesday, as tug boats worked to reopen the canal, which can see as many as 50 ships pass through it a day. However, the ship remains wedged on the sand, with its GPS tracking data showing that it has only experienced minor changes in its position in the past 24 hours. The incident has created a significant shipping backlog and some firms have warned that if the canal is not fully reopened in the next 24-48 hours, they will have to find a new route for their vessels, adding a week to their journey time and delaying the arrival of goods that rely on the Suez Canal.

Read more …

In honour of David Graeber

Free Us From The Roving Cavaliers of Credit (Steve Keen)

As Graeber pointed out in Debt: The First 5000 Years, the assumption that money originated in barter is an enduring myth in economics: “First comes barter, then money; credit only develops later” (Graeber 2011, Chapter 2). This myth permeates the discipline, from Adam Smith’s assertion in 1776 that “the propensity to truck, barter, and exchange one thing for another” (Smith 1776, Chapter 2) was an innate characteristic of humans, to modern economics textbooks, like Gregory Mankiw’s Macroeconomics, that argue that an economy without money would be “a barter economy” (Mankiw 2016, p. 82). Armed with this myth, economists have constructed a fantasy model of capitalism in which money plays no significant role: it is a mere trifle that sensible economists look through, to see the real face of barter lying behind the veil of money.

Consequently, mainstream economists ignore banks, debt and money, while credit plays no role in their mathematical models of the macroeconomy. This is why they not only didn’t see the 2007 Global Financial Crisis coming, but in fact expected 2008 to be a cracker of a year. The OECD’s Economic Outlook in June 2007 trumpeted that “sustained growth in OECD economies would be underpinned by strong job creation and falling unemployment” (Cotis 2007, p. 5). Yeah, right. Two months after this forecast was published, the biggest economic crisis before Covid-19 and since the Great Depression began. Why were they so wrong? Because they ignore Graeber’s central message that debt and credit drive the development, and sometimes the collapse, of economies.

Their logic rests, as usual, on a naïve assumption. They assume that banks are simply “intermediaries” between people who save money, and people who borrow money, and therefore that redistributing this money has little effect on economic activity. As ex-Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke put it, “Absent implausibly large differences in marginal spending propensities among the groups … pure redistributions should have no significant macroeconomic effects.” (Bernanke 2000, p. 24). What the hell does that jargon mean? It means that mainstream economists pretend that banks don’t create money when they lend—something that they can no longer do after The Bank of England categorically said that they do (McLeay, Radia et al. 2014)—or that this doesn’t really matter. A little arithmetic is enough to show they’re wrong, and David was right.

Read more …

 

 

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Jim Rickards – Great Reset
https://twitter.com/i/status/1375034375985901572

 

 

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Jan 052021
 
 January 5, 2021  Posted by at 10:32 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,  37 Responses »


Camille Pissarro The Boulevard Montmartre at Night 1897

 

Julian Assange: Imminent Freedom (Craig Murray)
Mexican President Promises Asylum For Julian Assange (RT)
Nurse Dies Following Vaccination With Pfizer’s COVID19 Shot In Portugal (RT)
Cheap Hair Lice Drug May Cut Risk Of COVID19 Death By 80 Percent (NYP)
The Lab-Leak Hypothesis (Baker)
US May Cut Some Moderna Vaccine Doses In Half To Speed Rollout (R.)
Putin Pushes Plan To Roll Out COVID “Immunity Passports” In Russia (ZH)
Greek Orthodox Church To Defy Lockdown By Opening For Epiphany (G.)
Tourism Tumbles To 1990 Levels As Pandemic Halts Travel (ZH)
Giving Up the Ghost (Kunstler)

 

 

Yesterday’s refusal to extradite Julian Assange is great news, but no-one really knows what it means. Craig Murray was one of the few allowed inside the courtroom, and he’s optimistic Assange will be out on bail by tomorrow. Let’s cling to that for now.

 

 

 

 

“I should be very surprised if Julian is not released on Wednesday pending the appeal.”

Julian Assange: Imminent Freedom (Craig Murray)

It has been a long and tiring day, with the startlingly unexpected decision to block Julian’s extradition. The judgement is in fact very concerning, in that it accepted all of the prosecution’s case on the right of the US Government to prosecute publishers worldwide of US official secrets under the Espionage Act. The judge also stated specifically that the UK Extradition Act of 2003 deliberately permits extradition for political offences. These points need to be addressed. But for now we are all delighted at the ultimate decision that extradition should be blocked. The decision was based equally on two points; the appalling conditions in US supermax prisons, and the effect of those conditions on Julian specifically given his history of depression.

The media has concentrated on the mental health aspect, and given insufficient attention to the explicit condemnation of the inhumanity of the US prison system. I was the only person physically present in the public gallery inside the court, having been nominated by John Shiption to represent the family, aside from two court officials. I am quite sure that I again noted magistrate Baraitser have a catch in her throat when discussing the inhumane conditions in US supermax prisons, the lack of human contact, and specifically the fact that inmates are kept in total isolation in a small cage, and are permitted one hour exercise a day in total isolation in another small cage. I noted her show emotion the same way when discussing the al-Masri torture evidence during the trial, and she seemed similarly affected here.

Julian looked well and alert; he showed no emotion at the judgement, but entered into earnest discussion with his lawyers. The US government indicated they will probably appeal the verdict, and a bail hearing has been deferred until Wednesday to decide whether he will be released from Belmarsh pending the appeal – which court sources tell me is likely to be held in April in the High Court. I should be very surprised if Julian is not released on Wednesday pending the appeal. I shall now be staying here for that bail hearing.

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Could be for only 3 years.

Mexican President Promises Asylum For Julian Assange (RT)

Mexico’s president has offered asylum to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, hours after a British judge refused to extradite Assange to the US to face espionage charges. “Assange is a journalist and deserves a chance, I am in favor of pardoning him,” President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador told reporters on Monday, saying “we’ll give him protection.” “Our tradition is protection,” Obrador added. [..] Were Assange to take Lopez Obrador up on his offer, he would likely have to weigh the president’s promise of protection against the fact that Obrador could be voted out of office in 2024, when his six-year term concludes.


Since taking office, Lopez Obrador has pursued an idiosyncratic foreign policy. On one hand, the left-wing president sheltered Bolivian President Evo Morales following a right-wing coup in 2019 and refused to follow the lead of the US and its allies in Latin America and recognize opposition leader Juan Guaido as Venezuela’s interim president last year. On the other hand, Lopez Obrador has been largely supportive of US President Donald Trump’s administration. The Mexican leader tightened up security at his southern border when Trump railed against Central American migrant “caravans” entering the US via Mexico, and was repaid by Trump during negotiations with OPEC last year, when the US President intervened to help Mexico avoid cuts to oil production.

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One single death doesn’t have much meaning.

Nurse Dies Following Vaccination With Pfizer’s COVID19 Shot In Portugal (RT)

Health authorities in Portugal are investigating the sudden death of a pediatric surgery assistant in Porto, who was reportedly in “perfect health” when she received the Pfizer vaccine against the coronavirus. Identified on Monday as Sonia Azevedo, 41, the mother of two worked as a surgical assistant at the Instituto Portugues de Oncologia (IPO), an oncology hospital in Porto. She was among the 538 healthcare workers at IPO who received their first dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine last Wednesday. Azevedo had dinner with her family on New Year’s Eve, and was found dead in bed the following morning.


“I want to know what caused my daughter’s death” her father Abilio told the Portuguese tabloid Orreio da Manha. He described her as a “well and happy” person who “never drank alcohol, didn’t eat anything special or out of the ordinary.” Azevedo was so proud to be among the first to receive the vaccine, she changed her Facebook profile picture to reflect that. “Covid-19 vaccinated,” she wrote under a selfie with her face mask on. “We don’t know what happened. It all happened quickly and with no explanation,” Azevedo’s daughter Vania Figueiredo told the paper. “I didn’t notice anything different in my mother. She was fine. She just said that the area where she had been vaccinated hurt, but that’s normal…”

Read more …

Ivermectin goes mainstream. “But we have to do more testing”.

Cheap Hair Lice Drug May Cut Risk Of COVID19 Death By 80 Percent (NYP)

A simple treatment for COVID-19 could be cheaper than 20 bucks — and familiar to most grade school nurses. Head lice drug ivermectin is being explored as a potential treatment for the coronavirus following a promising new study that showed an 80% reduction in hospitalized COVID-19 patient deaths. Just 8 out of 573 patients who received ivermectin passed away, compared to the 44 individuals out of 510 who died after being given a placebo. An earlier study of the antiparasitic prescription drug, which costs between $17 and $43 for a course of treatment, according to GoodRx, revealed promising results in April — by removing all viral RNA within 48 hours of a single dose.

Liverpool University virologist Andrew Hill has called the new study “transformational” in the search for a coronavirus therapy. His findings, based on data from over 1,400 patients, were made public in a video posted to YouTube in which Hill discusses his results in a previously aired livestream. The research currently awaits peer review prior to publishing. “If we see these same trends observed consistently across more studies, then this really is going to be a transformational treatment,” said Hill. However, critics have called Hill’s study conclusion premature, urging further research before declaring ivermectin an effective treatment — citing other buzzed-about methods that ultimately failed to deliver, such as hydroxychloroquine and tocilizumab.

“All we have are observational studies and clinicians’ opinions,” said University of Sydney professor Andrew McLachlan, the Daily Mail reported. “Many of the current studies have low numbers of participants, weak study designs, and inconsistent (and relatively low) ivermectin dosing regimes, with ivermectin frequently given in combination with other drugs.”

Read more …

Long piece on all options.

The Lab-Leak Hypothesis (Baker)

What happened was fairly simple, I’ve come to believe. It was an accident. A virus spent some time in a laboratory, and eventually it got out. SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, began its existence inside a bat, then it learned how to infect people in a claustrophobic mine shaft, and then it was made more infectious in one or more laboratories, perhaps as part of a scientist’s well-intentioned but risky effort to create a broad-spectrum vaccine. SARS-2 was not designed as a biological weapon. But it was, I think, designed. Many thoughtful people dismiss this notion, and they may be right. They sincerely believe that the coronavirus arose naturally, “zoonotically,” from animals, without having been previously studied, or hybridized, or sluiced through cell cultures, or otherwise worked on by trained professionals.

They hold that a bat, carrying a coronavirus, infected some other creature, perhaps a pangolin, and that the pangolin may have already been sick with a different coronavirus disease, and out of the conjunction and commingling of those two diseases within the pangolin, a new disease, highly infectious to humans, evolved. Or they hypothesize that two coronaviruses recombined in a bat, and this new virus spread to other bats, and then the bats infected a person directly — in a rural setting, perhaps — and that this person caused a simmering undetected outbreak of respiratory disease, which over a period of months or years evolved to become virulent and highly transmissible but was not noticed until it appeared in Wuhan.

There is no direct evidence for these zoonotic possibilities, just as there is no direct evidence for an experimental mishap — no written confession, no incriminating notebook, no official accident report. Certainty craves detail, and detail requires an investigation. It has been a full year, 80 million people have been infected, and, surprisingly, no public investigation has taken place. We still know very little about the origins of this disease. Nevertheless, I think it’s worth offering some historical context for our yearlong medical nightmare. We need to hear from the people who for years have contended that certain types of virus experimentation might lead to a disastrous pandemic like this one. And we need to stop hunting for new exotic diseases in the wild, shipping them back to laboratories, and hot-wiring their genomes to prove how dangerous to human life they might become.

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The drug itself is not experimental enough?!

US May Cut Some Moderna Vaccine Doses In Half To Speed Rollout (R.)

The U.S. government is considering giving some people half the dose of Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine in order to speed vaccinations, a federal official said on Sunday. Moncef Slaoui, head of Operation Warp Speed, the federal vaccine program, said on CBS’ “Face the Nation” that officials were in talks with Moderna and the Food and Drug Administration about the idea. Moderna’s vaccine requires two injections. “We know that for the Moderna vaccine, giving half of the dose to people between the ages of 18 and 55, two doses, half the dose, which means exactly achieving the objective of immunizing double the number of people with the doses we have,” Slaoui said. “We know it induces identical immune response” to the full dose, he added.


The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said it had administered 4,225,756 first doses of COVID-19 vaccines in the country as of Saturday morning and distributed 13,071,925 doses. The U.S. has also approved a vaccine from Pfizer, which like Moderna’s requires two shots. Vaccinations have fallen far short of early targets, as officials had hoped to have 20 million people vaccinated by the end of the 2020. Slaoui said he was optimistic vaccinations would continue to accelerate. He rejected the suggestion that officials should prioritize giving more people a single shot, rather than holding back doses for the second shot, saying that cutting Moderna vaccine doses in half was “a more responsible approach that would be based on facts and data.” Slaoui said it would likely not be known until late spring whether vaccinated people can still spread the disease to others.

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Vaccination iron curtain?!

Putin Pushes Plan To Roll Out COVID “Immunity Passports” In Russia (ZH)

As Russian President Vladimir Putin ramps up his aggressive campaign to stamp out COVID-19 once and for all (as Russia races to vaccinate its most vulnerable citizens while striking deals to supply “Sputnik V” to developing markets the world), the embattled president has just raised the possibility of distributing ‘immunity passports’, an idea that has gained traction around the world since the dawn of the pandemic. According to an RT report, the Russian government is considering the development and distribution of documents verifying whether individuals have been vaccinated. China has already road-tested technology transmitting people’s COVID status via smartphone apps, and it’s widely suspected that Beijing will impose some version of immunity passports, if they haven’t already.

In a series of instructions to officials, published at the end of 2020, President Vladimir Putin ordered policymakers “to consider issuing certificates to people who have been vaccinated against Covid-19 infections using Russian vaccines…or the purpose of enabling citizens to travel across the borders of the Russian Federation and those of other countries.” Russia’s Prime Minister, Mikhail Mishustin, has been charged with implementing the recommendations, and is set to report back on January 20. For once, Putin and American billionaire Bill Gates will be seeing eye to eye, as support for “immunity passports” grows not just among governments (even in “liberal democracies” like Canada), but the private sector as well. As RT reminds us, the IATA has voiced support for “immunity passports” as a strategy for hastening the revival of air travel.

The International Air Transport Association, which represents 290 airlines across the world, has supported the idea of vaccine passports, and is developing its own digital system to track who has been immunized against the virus. Passengers may be expected to present equivalent documents before being allowed to board planes in the future. Immunizations with the Russian-made Sputnik V vaccine, the first to be registered for the prevention of Covid-19 anywhere in the world, have been taking place in growing numbers in the capital and across the country. More than 70 centers in Moscow are now offering jabs, and at least 800,000 people have received their first dose.

Remember, once they arrived, people might soon find “Immunity Passports” will become a permanent facet of their lives: even after the COVID-19 pandemic ends, they could be used to offer evidence that a traveler has been vaccinated – not just for COVID-19, but for any other diseases, or even perhaps mutated forms of COVID-19. Critically, as we noted previously, if we are going to live in a world where vaccines are mandatory for travel, who is to say that every nation on Earth is going to acknowledge the validity of every other vaccine. The Mainstream Media makes it seem as though just getting any vaccine with some sort of paperwork to back it up should be good enough, but this is unlikely to be true.

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The church is powerful in Greece.

Greek Orthodox Church To Defy Lockdown By Opening For Epiphany (G.)

The Greek Orthodox church has announced it will defy government lockdown orders aimed at curbing the spread of coronavirus and open places of worship to mark Epiphany this Wednesday. After an emergency session of the holy synod, its governing body, senior clerics said they would press ahead as planned and celebrate the baptism of Christ on 6 January. “The synod does not agree with the new government measures regarding the operation of places of worship and insists on what was originally agreed with the state,” the ecclesiastical body said in a statement. “It asks that the aforementioned decision be absolutely respected by the state without further ado taking into consideration … that all the foreseen hygiene measures were upheld by clerics in thousands of churches across Greece.”

The announcement, which flies in the face of new week-long restrictions on movement, is the most open act of defiance yet by the powerful institution. Before the holiday season Athens’ centre-right government had said it would relax curbs and permit all places of worship to conduct services, albeit with limited congregations, on Christmas Day, New Year’s Day and the Epiphany. But with the country’s health system under pressure after a surge in coronavirus cases, the administration rescinded the decision at the weekend saying restrictions eased over the festive period would be reimposed to facilitate the reopening of schools on 11 January. Greece has been in lockdown since 7 November.

How the prime minister, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, who kicked off the new year with a cabinet reshuffle earlier on Monday, will react to the decision remains to be seen. The sight of worshippers breaching restrictions that have caused consternation, not least in the retail sector, would fuel further controversy. Epidemiologists have called for even tougher curbs if a second wave of the pandemic is to be brought under control in a country that, while faring better than most, has recorded 140,099 coronavirus cases and 4,957 Covid-19 deaths to date.

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This bloated industry can do with some less.

Tourism Tumbles To 1990 Levels As Pandemic Halts Travel (ZH)

While few industries have been spared by the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, even fewer have been hit as hard as the tourism sector. As 2020 drew to a close with severe limitations to travel still in place, the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) expects international arrivals to have declined by 70 to 75 percent compared to the previous year. As Statista’s Felix Richter writes, that equates to a decline of around 1 billion international arrivals, bringing the industry back to 1990 levels.

Prior to the coronavirus outbreak, the global tourism sector had seen almost uninterrupted growth for decades. Since 1980, the number of international arrivals skyrocketed from 277 million to nearly 1.5 billion in 2019. As Statista’s chart above shows, the two largest crises of the past decades, the SARS epidemic of 2003 and the global financial crisis of 2009, were minor bumps in the road compared to the COVID-19 pandemic. Looking ahead, most experts don’t expect a full recovery in 2021, which started off with many countries still battling the second wave of the pandemic. According to the UNWTO’s estimates, it will take the industry between 2.5 and 4 years to return to pre-pandemic levels of international tourist arrivals.

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“Persistent rumor has the president laying out a royal flush of deadly information about his antagonists, enough to make heads explode among the formerly cocksure and vaporize the narrative they’ve been running for four years.”

Giving Up the Ghost (Kunstler)

Things are shaking loose. Secrets are flying out of black boxes. Shots have been fired. The center is not holding because the center is no longer there, only a black hole where the center used to be, and, within it, the shriekings of lost souls. Will the United States go missing this week, or fight its way out of the chaos and darkness? Whatever occurs in this strange week of confrontation, Joe Biden will not be leading any part of it. Where has he been since Christmas? Back to hiding in the basement? Did the American people elect a ghost? Even if this storm blows over, could Joe Biden possibly claim any legitimacy in the Oval Office? And then what happens with the rest of the story — which is an epic economic convulsion sharper than the Great Depression — as time is unsuspended and the year 2021 actually unspools?

Only the bare outlines of this week’s fateful game are visible. Mr. Trump has not conceded the election. An action will play out in congress under rarely-used constitutional rules as to how the electoral college votes are awarded to whom. The rancor around this action is already epic. Few of the political players are beyond suspicion of dark deals and shifty allegiances. Persistent rumor has the president laying out a royal flush of deadly information about his antagonists, enough to make heads explode among the formerly cocksure and vaporize the narrative they’ve been running for four years. A whole lot of people are converging in the nation’s capital at midweek, maybe even the touted million. It is a moment, possibly, not unlike the Bastille in Paris, 1789. They will be clamoring right outside Congress as the electoral vote ceremony proceeds. If the battle is not joined in the chamber, it’s a little hard to believe the crowd will just heave a million sighs, trudge back to their cars, and drive quietly home.

Senator Ted Cruz has come up with a pretty sound plan: a ten-day emergency audit of the balloting with an electoral commission consisting of five Senators, five House Members, and five Supreme Court Justices — to consider and resolve the disputed returns. The proposal is based on the 1877 procedure for resolving the contested Hayes-Tilden election. “Once completed, individual states would evaluate the Commission’s findings and could convene a special legislative session to certify a change in their vote, if needed,” the proposal stated. Naturally, the Democratic Party’s news media handmaidens denounced it as “embarrassing” — which raises the question: who exactly will be embarrassed if the plan goes ahead?

Read more …

 

 

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Oct 282020
 


Gustav Klimt Pine forest I 1901

 

Last Round-up at the Wokester Corral (Jim Kunstler)
Multi-Organ Impairment In Low-Risk Individuals With Long COVID (medrxiv)
UK Study Finds Evidence Of Waning Antibody Immunity To COVID19 Over Time (R.)
Spanish Doctors In First Walkout In 25 Years To Protest New COVID19 Order (ZH)
White House Watch: Biden 49%, Trump 47% (Rasmussen)
Don’t Believe The Polls – Trump Is Winning (Hill)
Bobulinski Says He Met Joe Biden Twice In Connection With Chinese Venture (JTN)
How The Authenticity of Hunter’s Laptop Became Immaterial (Turley)
Biden Calls Russia #1 Threat But Slammed Romney For Saying It In 2012 (JTN)
Senate Investigates Hunter Biden’s Failure to Register as Foreign Agent (RCI)
The Last Days of the Trumpian Reich (CJ Hopkins)
‘Covid First’ China Is Trumping ‘America First’ In Economic Recovery (Roach)
Banksy’s Foolproof Plan for Dealing With Anyone Who Steals His Art (Y!)
Newly Sworn-In ACB Immediately Orders All Women To Wear Handmaid Outfit (BBee)

 

 

 

 

Kim Dotcom Joe Biden

 

 

“…a free society is obliged to tolerate the expression of disagreeable ideas up to the limit, as the Supreme Court put it, of “crying ‘fire’ in a crowded theater.”

Last Round-up at the Wokester Corral (Jim Kunstler)

I have some questions for former friends who have dumped me on account of my support for Mr. Trump’s re-election — which is mostly a vote to prevent the Democratic Party and its fellow travelers from running the government. On the whole, these former friends are college-educated, mature in experience, and cultured. Some of them are well-acquainted with history, which is to say, they ought to know better than to support the obviously illiberal motives of the political Left. Are you against the principle of free speech? The Democratic Party is. They used to be champions of the First Amendment; now they want to make it conditional on ideas and sentiments they support. Contrary ideas are to be labeled “hate speech,” and suppressed, along with anything that might hurt somebody’s feelings.

How did you come to such a complete misunderstanding of what free speech means? Namely, that a free society is obliged to tolerate the expression of disagreeable ideas up to the limit, as the Supreme Court put it, of “crying ‘fire’ in a crowded theater.” I will answer my own question partially by saying: you have been programmed against free speech by what used to be the very vehicles of it, the newspapers and TV News channels, which have, amazingly, come out against freedom of the press and turned into propaganda outlets for Woke Progressivism and its illiberal agenda — thereby inadvertently committing suicide of the entire profession. We’ve seen this acted-out most vividly just the past week in the social media companies’ efforts to suppress all news of the Biden family’s global business operations, along with The New York Times, The Washington Post, CNN, NPR, and other leading news organizations that Americans used to depend on to know what was happening in the nation.

This is especially unforgivable during a national election. Did you support the movement on campus in recent years to shut down events featuring speakers such as Charles Murray (The Bell Curve), Heather Mac Donald of City Journal, Dinesh D’Souza, and many others who represented not-so-Woke ideas that “offended” you? Since when are your feelings so special that they negate the open exchange of ideas in the places that used to be dedicated to it, the universities? Should higher education only entertain ideas that you and your cohorts approve of? What if, in some future, a different cohort gains control of higher education and seeks to exclude your ideas on the grounds that they’re “offensive” (i.e. they just don’t like them)?

Are you in favor of a politicized Department of Justice and CIA? That is what the Democratic Party’s Resistance League deliberately brought about during the 2016 election, and they continue to promote it. Is it okay for bureaucrats to break the law to disable their political adversaries? That was the essence of the RussiaGate ruse. Former employees of those agencies, such as ex-CIA chief John Brennan and Andrew Weissmann, who ran the Mueller investigation, to this day still hype “Russian collusion” falsehoods to deflect attention from their own misdeeds. You let them get away with that.

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201 participants, median age 44, 70% women, large majority not high risk. Only 18% hospitalized. Median time 140 days from first symptom: 99% suffered at least four symptoms. 42% suffered at least ten. In 66%, injuries in at least one organ, in 25% in at least two organs.

Multi-Organ Impairment In Low-Risk Individuals With Long COVID (medrxiv)

Background Severe acute respiratory syndrome-coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection has disproportionately affected older individuals and those with underlying medical conditions. Research has focused on short-term outcomes in hospital, and single organ involvement. Consequently, impact of long COVID (persistent symptoms three months post-infection) across multiple organs in low-risk individuals is yet to be assessed.

Methods An ongoing prospective, longitudinal, two-centre, observational study was performed in individuals symptomatic after recovery from acute SARS-CoV-2 infection. Symptoms and organ function (heart, lungs, kidneys, liver, pancreas, spleen) were assessed by standardised questionnaires (EQ-5D-5L, Dyspnoea-12), blood investigations and quantitative magnetic resonance imaging, defining single and multi-organ impairment by consensus definitions.

Findings Between April and September 2020, 201 individuals (mean age 44 (SD 11.0) years, 70% female, 87% white, 31% healthcare workers) completed assessments following SARS-CoV-2 infection (median 140, IQR 105-160 days after initial symptoms). The prevalence of pre-existing conditions (obesity: 20%, hypertension: 6%; diabetes: 2%; heart disease: 4%) was low, and only 18% of individuals had been hospitalised with COVID-19. Fatigue (98%), muscle aches (88%), breathlessness (87%), and headaches (83%) were the most frequently reported symptoms. Ongoing cardiorespiratory (92%) and gastrointestinal (73%) symptoms were common, and 42% of individuals had ten or more symptoms.

There was evidence of mild organ impairment in heart (32%), lungs (33%), kidneys (12%), liver (10%), pancreas (17%), and spleen (6%). Single (66%) and multi-organ (25%) impairment was observed, and was significantly associated with risk of prior COVID-19 hospitalisation (p<0.05).

Interpretation In a young, low-risk population with ongoing symptoms, almost 70% of individuals have impairment in one or more organs four months after initial symptoms of SARS-CoV-2 infection. There are implications not only for burden of long COVID but also public health approaches which have assumed low risk in young people with no comorbidities.

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It’s the combination of the article above, and this one, that has me thinking. Both talk about what happens in a 6 month period or longer.

UK Study Finds Evidence Of Waning Antibody Immunity To COVID19 Over Time (R.)

Antibodies against the novel coronavirus declined rapidly in the British population during the summer, a study found on Tuesday, suggesting protection after infection may not be long lasting and raising the prospect of waning immunity in the community. Scientists at Imperial College London have tracked antibody levels in the British population following the first wave of COVID-19 infections in March and April. Their study found that antibody prevalence fell by a quarter, from 6% of the population around the end of June to just 4.4% in September. That raises the prospect of decreasing population immunity ahead of a second wave of infections in recent weeks that has forced local lockdowns and restrictions.

Although immunity to the novel coronavirus is a complex and murky area, and may be assisted by T cells, as well as B cells that can stimulate the quick production of antibodies following re-exposure to the virus, the researchers said the experience of other coronaviruses suggested immunity might not be enduring. “We can see the antibodies and we can see them declining and we know that antibodies on their own are quite protective,” Wendy Barclay, head of the Department of Infectious Disease at Imperial College London told reporters. “On the balance of evidence I would say, with what we know for other coronaviruses, it would look as if immunity declines away at the same rate as antibodies decline away, and that this is an indication of waning immunity at the population level.”

Those for whom COVID-19 was confirmed with a gold standard PCR test had a less pronounced decline in antibodies, compared to people who had been asymptomatic and unaware of their original infection. There was no change in the levels of antibodies seen in healthcare workers, possibly due to repeated exposure to the virus. The study backs up findings from similar surveys in Germany which found the vast majority of people didn’t have COVID-19 antibodies, even in hotspots for the disease, and that antibodies might fade in those who do.

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“The order requires doctors and nurses to report to any of a range of assignments that could be handed to them by the government during the state of emergency..”

Spanish Doctors In First Walkout In 25 Years To Protest New COVID19 Order (ZH)

Doctors across Spain have walked out on Tuesday in what media outlets have called the first medical strike to rock the country in 25 years. As the coronavirus pandemic rages across Spain, where the Health Ministry reported another 18,418 new daily cases on Tuesday, doctors are beginning the strike, which was called in defiance of Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez’s latest emergency order, which was implemented on Sunday. The order requires doctors and nurses to report to any of a range of assignments that could be handed to them by the government during the state of emergency, which could be in place for months. Doctors complained that the new law violated their rights, and compromised the standard of care for patients, as doctors would end up working in an area they weren’t specialized in.


The strike will continue indefinitely, with doctors set to continue striking on the last Tuesday of every month until a deal has been reached. For the first time, 200,000 new cases were confirmed in Spain over the previous two weeks, and cases on Tuesday were up 33% compared with the prior week. And over the last 24 hours, another 267 people have died. “The Health Ministry hasn’t even dignified us with a meeting to try and get us to call off the strike,” he told Spanish health journal iSanidad. Spain’s hospitals harbor nearly 16,700 active COVID-19 patients – up more than 600 compared to Monday, with one quarter of all the country’s ICU units used to treat those with an infectious disease.

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The day before, Trump was ahead.

White House Watch: Biden 49%, Trump 47% (Rasmussen)

Democrat Joe Biden has edged back ahead in Rasmussen Reports’ daily White House Watch survey. The latest national telephone and online survey of Likely U.S. Voters shows Biden earning 49% support to President Trump’s 47%. Three percent (3%) like some other candidate, while two percent (2%) are still undecided. Yesterday, Trump was ahead for the first time since mid-September – by a minimal 48% to 47%. The race has been tightening since early in the month.


Rasmussen Reports has been releasing White House Watch weekly on Wednesdays since the beginning of July. But starting this week, White House Watch will be posted daily at 10:30 am Eastern. Trump earns 82% support among Republicans. Biden has 78% of the Democrat vote and leads by three among voters not affiliated with either major party. The survey of 1,500 Likely Voters was conducted October 22 and 25-26, 2020 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 2.5 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC.

Trump: VOTE

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FYI.

Don’t Believe The Polls – Trump Is Winning (Hill)

We predict that President Trump is going to win the 2020 presidential election — and win big. While the majority of the polls suggest that Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden is leading, or at best that it’s close, those polls suffer from at least three problems. First, the tone of the questions. There is significant evidence from behavioral psychology that suggests that the way a question is framed predetermines the range of potential answers. In fact, Gallup has found that respondents can answer very differently to questions with the same topic even in the same survey based on the language that’s used. And the use of metaphors can even dwarf the importance of pre-existing differences between Republicans and Democrats.

One of the reasons respondents do that is because of a tendency to give socially desirable answers, which was the case especially during the 2016 election. Most people don’t like confrontation, so the easiest, albeit not necessarily the best, solution is to avoid it. Right now, saying that you’re voting for Trump/Pence is often not the socially desirable answer. In fact, a recent poll by the Cato Institute suggests that nearly two-thirds of Americans say that the political climate is sufficiently harsh that they don’t want to give their genuine opinion about politics.

Second, the sample of respondents. Who responds depends on many factors, including the medium (e.g., landline versus cellphone), the location, the sample size and demographic factors. Moreover, the pool of respondents is not necessarily the same as the pool of likely voters. Even though election polls all contain a margin of error, that margin of error is unreliable if the underlying sample does not reflect the population. Researchers have also identified self-screening as the major contributing factor to the polling failures during the 2016 election cycle. For example, distrust of pollsters also leads to lower response rates for Trump supporters. Rasmussen finds that 17 percent of likely U.S. voters who “strongly approve” of the job President Trump is doing say they are less likely to let others know how they intend to vote in the upcoming election.

By comparison, only 8 percent of those who “strongly disapprove” of the president’s performance say the same. While proper sampling methodology matters more than the size, having a representative sample with enough people still helps considerably. Robert Cahaly of the Trafalgar Group notes how their work to create minimum samples sizes of 1,000 voters, added to their work to doggedly pursue the “quiet Trump voter,” led to Trafalgar being one of the most successful battleground polling firms in the country in 2016. Cahaly explains that “we don’t do a state with less than a thousand. You see these polls, 400, 500, 600 people for a state. I don’t buy that. Your margin of error is far too high.”

Third, the content of the current news cycle. What’s going on in a particular moment in time can influence voter attitudes, particularly in swing states. For example, the recent revelation of Hunter Biden’s hidden emails on his laptop, coupled with the link to his father, has come at an opportune time for the president. Moreover, if the economic recovery continues, the good news may continue putting wind in Trump’s sails.

Leaflet left on reporters’ chairs in Airforce One.

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Crickets in the MSM.

Bobulinski Says He Met Joe Biden Twice In Connection With Chinese Venture (JTN)

In a lengthy interview with Tucker Carlson on Tuesday night, former Biden family business associate Tony Bobulinski accused Joe Biden of a “blatant lie” in denying any familiarity with his son Hunter’s business undertakings, claiming he himself met with Biden on two separate occasions to discuss prospective ventures into Chinese markets. Bobulinski painted a picture of the Democratic presidential nominee as actively aware in broad strokes of plans for the Biden family to enter into a business partnership with Chinese nationals closely tied to the Chinese Communist Party and People’s Liberation Army — yet with Biden himself maintaining enough distance from the operational details in face-to-face encounters to preserve what his brother Jim Biden would characterize as “plausible deniability.”


Biden’s family members, Bobuilnski claimed, were “putting their entire family legacy on the line” in their dealings with the Chinese. “They knew exactly what they were doing,” he said. They were dealing with a Chinese owned enterprise … that had strong financial support and political support from the Chinese Communist Party. That’s how it was presented to me. That’s not my own words. That’s how they presented it to me and read me in on it.” Bobulinski made headlines last week when he claimed to have firsthand evidence of Biden’s involvement in those deals. “I’ve seen Vice President Biden saying he never talked to Hunter about his business,” Bobulinski said in a statement. “I’ve seen firsthand that that’s not true.”

Tucker Bobulinkski

In a largely unbroken 45-minute interview with Carlson on Tuesday, Bobulinski further went on the record, telling the Fox host that he was approached by the Biden family and several associates in 2017 in order to help manage a business venture in China. Bobulinski said he met with Biden at the Milken Institute’s 2017 Global Conference in Los Angeles. “They were wining and dining me to get me more engaged,” he told Carlson. “I didn’t request to meet with Joe,” Bobulinski said. “They requested I meet with Joe.” Bobulinski, a retired U.S. Navy lieutenant, said he met with Biden twice in the course of his association with the family. Biden reportedly told Bobulinski to “keep an eye on Hunter and [Biden’s brother] James” during their dealings.


Chinese officials, Bobulinski said, looked at him as “irrelevant,” seeing “the Biden family” as the main focus of their dealings. He claimed that the Bidens received a $5 million no-collateral, no-interest loan from Chinese officials. Bobulinski was motivated to come forward, he told Carlson, after California Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff denounced recently leaked emails involving Hunter Biden as “Russian disinformation.” That allegation, Bobulinski told Carlson, also smeared his own family’s name. “I was at the end of the rope,” he said. “I called [Biden associate] Rob Walker. I told him if that statement wasn’t retracted by midnight on Sunday then I was going on record.”

Tucker Bobulinkski 8 Minutes
https://twitter.com/i/status/1321285423793131527

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“It simply does not matter. It is disinformation because it is simply inconvenient to treat it as real information.”

How The Authenticity of Hunter’s Laptop Became Immaterial (Turley)

Yesterday, former Vice President Joe Biden was again insisting that the scandal involving Hunter Biden’s laptop was Russian disinformation despite the direct refutation of that claim by the FBI. No mainstream reporter bothered to ask the simple question of whether this was his son’s laptop and emails, including emails clearly engaging in an influence peddling scheme and referring to Joe Biden’s knowledge. Instead, media has maintained a consistent and narrow focus. Indeed, in her interview, Leslie Stahl immediately dismissed any “scandal” involving Hunter in an interview with the President on 60 Minutes. It was an open example of what I previously noted in a column: “After all, an allegation is a scandal only if it is damaging. No coverage, no damage, no scandal.”

In her interview with Joe Biden, CBS anchor Norah O’Donnell did not push Biden to simply confirm that the emails were fake or whether he did in fact meet with Hunter’s associates (despite his prior denials). Instead O’Donnell asked: “Do you believe the recent leak of material allegedly from Hunter’s computer is part of a Russian disinformation campaign?” Biden responded with the same answer that has gone unchallenged dozens of times: “From what I’ve read and know the intelligence community warned the president that Giuliani was being fed disinformation from the Russians. And we also know that Putin is trying very hard to spread disinformation about Joe Biden. And so when you put the combination of Russia, Giuliani– the president, together– it’s just what it is. It’s a smear campaign because he has nothing he wants to talk about. What is he running on? What is he running on?”

It did not matter that the answer omitted the key assertion that this was not Hunter’s laptop or emails or that he did not leave the computer with this store. Recently, Washington Post columnist Thomas Rid wrote said the quiet part out loud by telling the media: “We must treat the Hunter Biden leaks as if they were a foreign intelligence operation — even if they probably aren’t.” Let that sink in for a second. It does not matter if these are real emails and not Russian disinformation. They probably are real but should be treated as disinformation even though American intelligence has repeatedly rebutted that claim. It does not even matter that the FBI has seized the computer as evidence in a criminal fraud investigation or that a Biden confidant is now giving his allegations to the FBI under threat of criminal charges if he lies to investigators. It simply does not matter. It is disinformation because it is simply inconvenient to treat it as real information.

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Times change. RussiaRussia has become indispensible.

Biden Calls Russia #1 Threat But Slammed Romney For Saying It In 2012 (JTN)

Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden recently identified Russia as the number one threat to America but in 2012, when he was vice president, Biden called then-GOP presidential nominee Gov. Mitt Romney “out of touch” for taking the same position. Biden said Romney views the “world through a Cold War prism that is totally out of touch with the realities of the 21st century.” Biden slammed Romney for referring to Russia as “our number one geopolitical foe,” which was greeted with laughter from members of the audience watching Biden’s address in April 2012. “Governor Romney is mired in a Cold War mindset,” Biden said in a foreign policy speech at New York University in 2012.

Biden referred to Romney’s criticism of Obama’s handling of the New START treaty, which was a nuclear arms control treaty reached with Russia in 2010. “Governor Romney was part of a very small group of Cold War holdovers who never met an arms control treaty that he likes,” he said. “He was way out of the mainstream on this issue, unless you think that’s just political hyperbole.” “He acts like he thinks the Cold War is still on, Russia is still our major adversary,” Biden said in an interview on CBS News’ “Face the Nation” in 2012. “I don’t know where he has been. We have disagreements with Russia, but they’re united with us on Iran. One of only two ways we’re getting material into Afghanistan to our troops is through Russia … if there is an oil shutdown in any way in the Gulf, they’ll consider increasing oil supplies to Europe. This is not 1956.”

In October 2012, Obama mocked Romney’s position on Russia as the top threat to the U.S. during a presidential debate. “The 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back because the Cold War’s been over for 20 years,” Obama said. In a “60 Minutes” interview that aired Sunday evening, Biden said Russia is the greatest threat to the U.S. “The biggest threat to America right now in terms of breaking up our security and our alliances is Russia,” he said.

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“The email indicates Hunter was familiar with the requirements of the law. It is a crime to knowingly violate FARA. Violations carry a maximum punishment of five years in prison.”

Senate Investigates Hunter Biden’s Failure to Register as Foreign Agent (RCI)

A search of Justice Department databases reveals that Hunter Biden failed to register as a foreign agent while promoting the interests of foreign business partners in Washington, including brokering meetings with his father and other government officials, and RealClear Investigations has learned at least one Senate committee is investigating whether Joe Biden’s son violated federal laws requiring disclosure of such foreign contacts. The Obama administration did not prosecute Hunter Biden for potential violations of the Foreign Agents Registration Act, despite its much more aggressive pursuit of FARA cases relative to other administrations — including its opening of criminal investigations on no fewer than six Trump campaign advisers in 2016.

One of them, Paul Manafort, ended up in prison in part for failing to publicly disclose his lobbying on behalf of Ukrainian clients and partners. Newly discovered April 2015 emails show Hunter Biden appeared to be helping a Ukrainian energy executive meet with and lobby his father, who was vice president at the time. Hunter, who held a lucrative seat on the board of Ukrainian gas giant Burisma at the time, also sought meetings with State Department officials. None of these contacts was publicly disclosed in government filings, according to a search of both FARA and Lobbying Disclosure Act records, which show Hunter registered as a federal lobbyist in 2001 and stopped filing disclosures in 2008. In contrast, Hunter’s former law partner and fellow lobbyist, William Oldaker, has registered as a foreign agent under FARA. Oldaker is Joe Biden’s longtime campaign lawyer and fundraiser.

At least one Senate committee is actively investigating Hunter’s compliance with the FARA law. Though it has not sent a criminal referral to Justice, RCI has also learned that a public-interest law firm is preparing a complaint to Justice regarding Hunter Biden’s arranging meetings between his foreign contacts and his father when he was vice president. Former investigators and prosecutors say the uneven enforcement of the federal statute smacks of politics. “It’s a double standard, 100%,” said former assistant FBI director Chris Swecker, who led public corruption cases out of Washington. Added Swecker, who also served as a prosecutor: “It’s strange how in this election there is no curiosity whatsoever about foreign influence on a potential president of the United States, especially from this country’s greatest threat — China.”

[..] In a May 2017 email, their mutual business partner, James Biden, sent his nephew Hunter, Bobulinski and other partners a list of friendly American political contacts whom they could exploit to advance the proposed joint venture with their Chinese partners. Among the “key domestic contacts” were: Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York, Democratic New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, former Democratic Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe and Democratic Sen. Kamala Harris of California, who is now Joe Biden’s vice presidential running mate. (FARA records show James Biden has not registered as a foreign agent, either.) In an earlier email that same month, Hunter sought to avoid registering as a foreign agent as part of the venture. “We don’t want to have to register as foreign agents,” he told Bobulinski on May 1, 2017, and suggested setting up a U.S. shell company to work around it. The email indicates Hunter was familiar with the requirements of the law. It is a crime to knowingly violate FARA. Violations carry a maximum punishment of five years in prison.

@RobertPLewis: “I didn’t think the audio from Hunter Biden’s laptop could be worse than the child endangerment pics, but it is. Verbal admission from Hunter that he knew he and his dad were in bed & business with Chinese intelligence. Bruh. That’s treason”

Hunter: F*cking spy chief of China

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“Trump will face some sort of Nuremberg trial, where he will have to answer for mass-murdering six million people with the Coronavirus by taking off his mask on the White House balcony. Hillary Clinton will be appointed … something.”

The Last Days of the Trumpian Reich (CJ Hopkins)

So, according to the corporate media, this is it for Russian-backed Hitler. Game over. The walls are closing in. It’s the last days of the Trumpian Reich. Get those vuvuzelas ready! Yes, apparently, the American people, who were all a bunch of Putin-worshipping, white-supremacist neo-Nazis when they elected Trump in 2016, have come to their senses and are going to deliver a landslide victory to “Slappy” Joe Biden and bring down the curtain on this “Age of Darkness,” or save the world from “racial Orwellianism” or the “bottomless pit of facsism,” or whatever. White supremacy will be defeated and globalization will rise from the ashes! Decency will be restored! Love will trump hate! Black lives will matter!

Slappy and Kamala will immediately fly down and liberate the concentration camps. Trump will face some sort of Nuremberg trial, where he will have to answer for mass-murdering six million people with the Coronavirus by taking off his mask on the White House balcony. Hillary Clinton will be appointed … something. Exuberant liberals will pour into the streets, chanting unintelligible slogans through their designer masks and plastic head bubbles. OK, sure, the global economy will be ruined, and millions of people will be unemployed, and homeless, or will have needlessly died, so that GloboCap could simulate an apocalyptic global plague, and foment racialized civil unrest, and just generally create an atmosphere of confusion, depression, and paranoia, but the War on Populism will finally be over … and GloboCap will start to “Build Back Better!”

OK, it won’t be “better” right away. As our friends at the World Economic Forum note: “Thanks to the ongoing pandemic, the world is off-balance – and it will remain so for years to come. Far from settling into a ‘new normal’, we should expect a Covid19 domino effect, triggering further disruptions – positive as well as negative – over the decade ahead. The wave of civil unrest that spread across America and beyond recently may be one example …” So, all right, maybe not quite the end of the War on Populism, but at least a new stage of it. A chaotic, destructive, violent stage of it, which will require a lot of “emergency measures” and will end up radically transforming the planet into one big pathologized-totalitarian marketplace.

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Stephen Roach knows a thing or two.

‘Covid First’ China Is Trumping ‘America First’ In Economic Recovery (Roach)

Just as China led the world in economic recovery in the aftermath of the global financial crisis of 2008, it is playing a similar role today. Its post-Covid rebound is gathering momentum amid a developed world that remains on shaky ground. Unfortunately, this is a bitter pill for many to swallow – especially in the United States, where demonisation of China has reached epic proportions. The two crises are, of course, different. Wall Street was ground zero for the 2008 crisis, while the Covid-19 pandemic was spawned in the wet markets of Wuhan. But in both cases, China’s crisis-response strategy was far more effective than that deployed by the US. In the five years following the onset of the 2008 crisis, annual real GDP growth in China averaged 8.6 per cent (on a purchasing power parity basis).

While that was slower than the blistering (and unsustainable) 11.6 per cent average pace of the five previous years, it was four times the US economy’s anaemic 2.1 per cent average annual growth over the post-crisis 2010-14 period. China’s pandemic response hints at a comparable outcome in the years ahead. The GDP report for the third quarter of 2020 suggests a rapid return to the pre-Covid trend. The 4.9 per cent year-on-year figure for real GDP growth does not convey a full sense of the self-sustaining recovery that is now emerging in China. Measuring economic growth on a sequential quarterly basis and converting those comparisons to annual rates – the preferred construct of US statisticians and policymakers – provides a much cleaner sense of real-time shifts in the underlying momentum of any economy.

On that basis, China’s real GDP rose at an 11 per cent sequential annual rate in the third quarter, following a 55 per cent post-lockdown surge in the second quarter. The comparison with the US is noteworthy. Both economies experienced comparable contractions during their respective lockdowns, which came one quarter later for the US. China’s 33.8 per cent sequential (annualised) plunge in the first quarter was almost identical to the 31.2 per cent US contraction in the second quarter. Based on incoming high-frequency (monthly) data, the so-called GDPNow estimate of the Atlanta Federal Reserve puts third-quarter sequential real GDP growth in the US at around 35 per cent. While that is a welcome and marked turnaround from the record decline during the lockdown, it is about 20 percentage points short of China’s post-lockdown rebound and still leaves the US economy about 3 per cent below its peak of late 2019.

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“The big problem I had with people removing my street work wasn’t that it was exploiting and stealing from the community — it was because the stolen stuff looked so much better than what I was making in the studio..”

Banksy’s Foolproof Plan for Dealing With Anyone Who Steals His Art (Y!)

Contemporary art is a tricky business. If you’ve collected a painting or sculpture by a modern artist, odds are good that you’ll have some record of the transaction, and some method of verifying that the work you have is both genuine and genuinely obtained. That becomes a bit more complicated when the artist in question — though world-famous — has a penchant for anonymously leaving their work in urban spaces to create impromptu public art. Yes, we’re talking about Banksy, and one of his lesser-known practices which has recently come into sharp relief. Last week, a clip from Antiques Roadshow went viral. It features a man looking to get a small painting by Banksy evaluated. When asked how he’d come by it, the man admit he’d seen it while walking down a street in Brighton one night.

Recognizing it as Banksy’s handiwork, he then removed it from where it had been screwed into place. What follows is a brief and memorable lesson in morality. Pro tip: it’s generally considered poor form to admit to stealing something while being recorded for television. As the show’s host reveals, Banksy has established a virtual portal to authenticate whether specific works of his are both genuine and genuinely obtained — and, as the guy trying to get a painting valued admits, he’d visited the site and been told that the painting could not be validated because it was not obtained legally. Dubbed Pest Control, the service offers an easy-to-use interface to determine a particular work’s validity.

Elsewhere on Pest Control’s site, they offer a more extensive explanation of what they do — namely, issue certificates of authenticity. As for what that means, well — here’s what Pest Control themselves have to say: “The certificate of authenticity (COA) means you can buy, sell or insure a piece of art knowing it’s legitimate and the wheels won’t fall off,” they write. “Pest Control is the only source of COA’s for Banksy. We issue them for paintings, prints, sculptures and other attempts at creativity. We don’t issue them for things like stickers, posters, defaced currency or anything which wasn’t originally intended as a ‘work of art’.” Pest Control also offers a “Keeping It Real” service, which lets prospective buyers of a work by Banksy confirm that the work is, in fact, legitimate.

[..] “The big problem I had with people removing my street work wasn’t that it was exploiting and stealing from the community — it was because the stolen stuff looked so much better than what I was making in the studio,” he told artnet news.

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“All women are now required to bear at least seventeen babies.”

Newly Sworn-In ACB Immediately Orders All Women To Wear Handmaid Outfit (BBee)

After being sworn in as a Supreme Court justice, Amy Coney Barrett immediately issued a decree that all women are to wear red handmaid’s outfits for the rest of their lives. “Execute papal order 66,” she said, her eyes glowing red. “Implement the theocratic state.” Barrett sent out squads of soldiers to round up women and make sure they wear the garment at all times. All women are now required to bear at least seventeen babies. Attendance at Catholic Mass is also mandatory. Those who violate the order will be executed, “no exceptions,” said Barrett. “She can’t do this! This is unconstitutional!” screamed Rachel Maddow as enforcement squads kicked in the doors at MSNBC’s studios and grabbed her for reconditioning as a subservient handmaid. “I warned you! I WARNED ALL OF YOU!” The whole country turning into a Christofascist state seems to be a negative to many, but the nation is quite a bit more peaceful now.

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Aug 192020
 


Wassily Kandinsky Autumn Landscape with Boats 1908

 

Chinese Regulator: Vaccines Must Have 50% Efficacy, 6 Months Immunity (SCMP)
Brennan, Strzok and DOJ Needed Assange Arrested – And UK Officials Obliged (CT)
The Big Story Behind The Mueller Special Counsel Purpose (CT)
Senate Panel Releases Final Report On Russian Interference In 2016 (ZH)
Will the Dam Break After Clinesmith’s Plea? (RCP)
Justice Delayed or Denied? A Response To Weissmann And Goodman (Turley)
The Specter of a Fascist Coup by Trump Haunts the US (MPN)
The Plot Against The President (HR)
AOC ‘Snubs’ Joe Biden In Speech Nominating Bernie Sanders (Ind.)
Biden ‘Is Just Lost,’ Says Obama’s White House Doctor (WE)
At Least 10 Times More Plastic In The Atlantic Than Presumed (Phys.org)

 

 

 

 

Most of the good news was gone by Tuesday, though US new cases stayed subdued.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’m confident if you throw in a pair of ringside playoff seats you can get it down to 40%.

Chinese Regulator: Vaccines Must Have 50% Efficacy, 6 Months Immunity (SCMP)

Covid-19 vaccines must have an efficacy rate of 50 per cent and provide at least six months’ immunity if they are to be approved for use in China, the country’s drug regulator has announced. According to a draft document released by the Chinese Centre for Drug Evaluation (CCDE), 50 per cent is the minimum efficacy rate allowable, although 70 per cent is the target. The document said also that the regulator would consider granting emergency use of vaccines that have not yet completed their final phase of clinical trials. Chinese companies are among the forerunners in the race to produce a vaccine for Covid-19, with four candidates in final testing. A total of 29 products are undergoing clinical trials around the world, seven of which are in the final stage.


On Friday, China issued several documents setting out the standards for clinical trials and research on vaccines, including those based on the unproven mRNA platform. China’s requirement for a minimum 50 per cent efficacy – which means the vaccine would protect half of those injected with it – is in line with the benchmarks set by the World Health Organisation (WHO) and US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Unlike the Chinese draft, the FDA does not have a requirement for a minimum period of immunity. The WHO said in a document published in April that it hoped Covid 19 vaccines would protect recipients for a year, a target that China is also seeking, but many scientists are concerned that might not be achievable.

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This is how it all ties together. As I have written many times. Mueller needed Assange muzzled. He wasn’t interested in the truth, or he would have visited him. Mueller/Weissmann needed the RussiaRussia blubber to last. Or they would have come up completely empty.

The Mueller investigation ended on April 11 2019. Julian Assange was dragged out of the Ecuador embassy on April 11 2019.

Brennan, Strzok and DOJ Needed Assange Arrested – And UK Officials Obliged (CT)

Knowing how much effort the CIA and FBI put into the Russia collusion-conspiracy narrative, it would make sense for the FBI to take keen interest after this August 2017 meeting between Rohrabacher and Assange; and why the FBI would quickly gather specific evidence (related to Wikileaks and Bradley Manning) for a grand jury by December 2017. Within three months of the grand jury the DOJ generated an indictment and sealed it in March 2018. The EDVA sat on the indictment while the Mueller probe was ongoing. As soon as the Mueller probe ended, on April 11th, 2019, a planned and coordinated effort between the U.K. and U.S. was executed; Julian Assange was forcibly arrested and removed from the Ecuadorian embassy in London, and the EDVA indictment was unsealed.

As a person who has researched this three year fiasco; including the ridiculously false 2016 Russian hacking/interference narrative: “17 intelligence agencies”, Joint Analysis Report (JAR) needed for Obama’s anti-Russia narrative in December ’16; and then a month later the ridiculously political Intelligence Community Assessment (ICA) in January ’17; this timing against Assange is too coincidental. It doesn’t take a deep researcher to see the aligned Deep State motive to control Julian Assange because the Mueller report was dependent on Russia cybercrimes, and that narrative is contingent on the Russia DNC hack story which Julian Assange disputes.

This is critical. The Weissmann/Mueller report contains claims that Russia hacked the DNC servers as the central element to the Russia interference narrative in the U.S. election. This claim is directly disputed by WikiLeaks and Julian Assange, as outlined during the Dana Rohrabacher interview, and by Julian Assange on-the-record statements. The predicate for Robert Mueller’s investigation was specifically due to Russian interference in the 2016 election. The fulcrum for this Russia interference claim is the intelligence community assessment; and the only factual evidence claimed within the ICA is that Russia hacked the DNC servers; a claim only made possible by relying on forensic computer analysis from Crowdstrike, a DNC contractor.

The CIA holds a massive conflict of self-interest in upholding the Russian hacking claim. The FBI holds a massive interest in maintaining that claim. All of those foreign countries whose intelligence apparatus participated with Brennan and Strzok also have a vested self-interest in maintaining that Russia hacking and interference narrative. Julian Assange is the only person with direct knowledge of how Wikileaks gained custody of the DNC emails; and Assange has claimed he has evidence it was not from a hack. This Russian “hacking” claim is ultimately so important to the CIA, FBI, DOJ, ODNI and U.K intelligence apparatus…. Well, right there is the obvious motive to shut Assange down as soon intelligence officials knew the Mueller report was going to be public.

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While Trump was president and Jeff Sessions was AG, “the Mueller team was essentially controlling all DOJ activity”.

The Big Story Behind The Mueller Special Counsel Purpose (CT)

Foolishness and betrayal of our country have served to reveal dangers within our present condition. Misplaced corrective action, regardless of intent, is neither safe nor wise. The intelligence apparatus was weaponized against a candidate by those who controlled the levers of government. This is what AG Bill Barr needs to explain to the nation. The purpose behind briefing Durham’s lead investigator William Aldenberg was essentially to provide an understanding of what we the people already know. The purpose behind releasing the investigator name is to cut through the chaff and countermeasures and give face to the unit holding the precarious responsibility of sunlight.

The position of Bill Barr, and indeed our nation today, is a direct result of decisions made by Main Justice -as run by the special counsel- in the Fall of 2017 & Summer of 2018. The events surrounding the leaking of the FISA warrant used against U.S. person Carter Page; the purposeful cover-up by Andrew Weissmann; and the downstream 2018 DOJ decision not to prosecute SSCI Security Director James Wolfe for those leaks, was the fork in the road moment for the Department of Justice – and the institutions of government as a whole. Attorney General Jeff Sessions was recused.

As admitted in his June 2nd testimony Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein was providing no special counsel oversight, and the Mueller team was essentially controlling all DOJ activity. That was when the DOJ made a decision not to prosecute Wolfe for leaking classified information. DC U.S. Attorney Jessie Liu signed-off on a plea deal where Wolfe plead guilty to only a single count of lying to the FBI. If the DOJ had pursued the case against Wolfe for leaking the FISA application, everything would have been different. The American electorate would have seen evidence of what was taking place in the background effort to remove President Trump; and we would be in an entirely different place today if that prosecution or trial had taken place.

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Something tells me it won’t be the final report, not if they can help it. This nonsense needs to stop.

You and I don’t need a bogeyman enemy to live our lives, only the intelligence services do. And politicians of all stripes.

Senate Panel Releases Final Report On Russian Interference In 2016 (ZH)

The Senate Intelligence Committee has released a 966 page final report on Russian election interference in the 2016 presidential election, and outlines “Counterintelligence Threats and Vulnerabilities” during the race. The panel interviewed over 200 witnesses and reviewed over 1 million pages of documents, according to The Hill – finding that while Russia made efforts to interfere in the election through disinformation and cyber campaigns, there was insufficient evidence that the Trump campaign ‘colluded’ with the Kremlin, as we were promised was the case by Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) and the MSM over the course of several years. “No probe into this matter has been more exhaustive,” said acting Senate Intelligence Chairman Marco Rubio (R-FL) in a statement, adding “We can say, without any hesitation, that the Committee found absolutely no evidence that then-candidate Donald Trump or his campaign colluded with the Russian government to meddle in the 2016 election.”

Democratic Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia, the Committee’s Vice Chairman, had a different interpretation – saying “At nearly 1,000 pages, Volume 5 stands as the most comprehensive examination of ties between Russia and the 2016 Trump campaign to date — a breathtaking level of contacts between Trump officials and Russian government operatives that is a very real counterintelligence threat to our elections.” And while there was no evidence of coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia, the panel found that Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort’s contacts with ‘Kremlin-linked’ officials (as the Washington Post describes them) posed a “grave counterintelligence threat.”

“The volume, released Tuesday, states that former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort worked with a Russian intelligence officer “on narratives that sought to undermine evidence that Russia interfered in the 2016 U.S. election,” including the idea that Ukrainian election interference was of greater concern.” -WaPo “One of the Committee’s most important — and overlooked — findings is that much of Russia’s activities weren’t related to producing a specific electoral outcome, but attempted to undermine our faith in the democratic process itself,” said Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC).

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Quite a few people doubt it.

Will the Dam Break After Clinesmith’s Plea? (RCP)

• It was no surprise to learn last week that Kevin Clinesmith had altered an official document. Inspector General Michael Horowitz had already reported it, without naming the culprit. Durham had that information and could have indicted Clinesmith long ago. He didn’t because he was interviewing others about FISA abuses and didn’t want to give them any information from Clinesmith’s indictment. Releasing that information now shows Durham has completed his work on FISA fraud.

• Other, more senior FBI officials must have been involved in these FISA abuses, though Durham hasn’t said so yet. Some committed abuse themselves. Others knew about it or should have known. Still others must have discovered the misrepresentations, but failed to report them to the FISA court, as they were required to do. Those failures are felonies.

• Clinesmith has said he gave other FBI members the true document, not just the altered one. The 23rd paragraph of the charging information says Clinesmith “provided the unchanged C.I.A. email to Crossfire Hurricane agents and the Justice Department lawyer drafting the original wiretap application.” That’s a smoking bazooka.

• How can Durham prove the CIA’s truthful information was circulated and then hidden? By thoroughly checking the FBI’s internal document system. It should record everyone who received Clinesmith’s accurate (unaltered) document and those they later passed it to. If the agents and lawyers merely discussed the falsification, then prosecutors will need several witnesses to substantiate it.

• The real leader of the Mueller team, Andrew Weissmann, is still blowing smoke about these mounting legal problems. On Friday, he tweeted, “Clinesmith is charged with adding the words ‘not a source’ to an email about Carter Page, but nowhere does the charge say that is false, i.e. that Page was a source for the CIA.” Notice, Weissmann is not saying he knew nothing or that Page really was a Russian source. He simply saying that a 180-degree change in the document’s wording doesn’t mean what your lying eyes think it means.

• Weissmann’s comment shows the Mueller team is sticking with their existing disclaimer. Their report says they won’t speculate on “whether the correction of any particular misstatement or omission, or some combination thereof, would have resulted in a different outcome.” In order words, “We don’t see something. We don’t say something. And we don’t know if it matters.”

• Clinesmith actually worked on Robert Mueller’s team. He was tasked from the bureau to work with that team, which then submitted his falsified document to the FISA court. That’s crucially important. If attorneys on the special counsel team knew about his crime and did nothing to inform the court, if they continued to use a document they knew was fraudulent, they will face charges. That would implicate Mueller’s team for the first time in illegal activity to undermine the Trump presidency. That’s a much bigger matter than writing a biased report.

• We know from other declassified documents that it wasn’t just Mueller’s FISA application that had false information. All four applications did. Indeed, they depended on it, especially on the Steele dossier. Then-Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe testified that, without Steele, the warrants would not have been granted. Yet none of the agents and prosecutors ever told the FISA court about fraud, misrepresentation, and bias from Steele, Clinesmith, or others.

• The Mueller team must have known Clinesmith’s actions were a problem. They didn’t just get rid him, they tried to shift the blame. That’s the meaning of an opaque footnote in their report, which said that the bureau, not the Mueller team, supervised “an FBI attorney” who worked for the special counsel. Hey, it’s them, not us!

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Weismann doesn’t argue in good faith.

Justice Delayed or Denied? A Response To Weissmann And Goodman (Turley)

Recently, I posted a criticism of Andrew Weissmann, one of the top prosecutors with Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who ran a column with Professor Ryan Goodman encouraging Justice Department attorneys not to assist U.S. Attorney John Durham in his ongoing investigation (at least before the election) and dismissing the basis for the plea agreement reached with former FBI lawyer Kevin Clinesmith. Goodman argues that I was unfair to him and Weissmann in my posting and I wanted to respond. I did include a longer quote from the column to be sure that their point was better understood in context in an updated posting. However, in my view, the defense of this column only highlights the inherent bias that the original posting sought to address.

Rather than append this long discussion at the end of the original column, I felt it deserved its own posting and consideration by readers. [..] On Twitter, Professor Goodman makes four basic points which I make out into roughly six points. I would like to address each below. However, it is worth noting that only one point appears to be a claim of misrepresentation. First, Goodman states that the posting was “seriously flawed” and “Turley badly misrepresents what we said, what Justice Dept charged, and more… This is a pattern for Turley (see final tweet in this thread for that pattern)…” I will address the “pattern” referenced by Goodman below. However, Goodman states that the blog “falsely claims op-ed calls on DOJ lawyers ‘to undermine’ Durham investigation. He points out that “[o]ur op-ed: DOJ lawyers should refuse IMPROPER requests if VIOLATE oath to Constitution and policy on actions that interfere in election; plus Durham CAN indict after 11/3.”

This appears to be the heart of Goodman’s claim of misrepresentation (indeed it appears the only claim). It is a rather curious and tautological point. Goodman simply restates his argument that what Durham is doing is improper and thus says that it cannot be viewed as “undermining” Durham’s investigation. Yes, I believe telling DOJ lawyers that they should refuse to assist in indictment or pleas is undermining Durham’s investigation, even if it is to do so for a few months. Such pleas or indictments are critical parts to an investigation or additional criminal cases. Durham, who even Democratic leaders have acknowledged is an apolitical and dedicated prosecutor, believes that this plea is needed to move forward on what could be a broader prosecution.

Durham was delayed by the pandemic but has moved to complete this long-standing investigation. For Durham, waiting for additional months is an example of an unnecessary example of justice delayed being justice denied. He is allowed to move forward with his case and the cited “unwritten norm” of the authors is highly challengeable. Regardless of the merits, it hardly seems “seriously flawed” to characterize a call for Durham’s subordinates to stand down as undermining his investigation.

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You’ve been programmed. Man, all the people who take this serious…

“Recall similar warnings about Bush and Romney, who are now chums of Democrats in high places.”

The Specter of a Fascist Coup by Trump Haunts the US (MPN)

Should Trump fail to carry the Electoral College, Noam Chomsky admonishes, “he could send Blackshirts out in the streets… preparation for a plan to try to bring the military in to carry out something which would amount to a military coup.” A New York Times columnist opines: “Put nothing past Trump, not even the destruction of the American electoral process.” Robert Weissman, president of Public Citizen, explains that Trump’s election delay threat is a coup in the making. Economist Jack Rasmus speculates Trump will “call for his radical right, gun-toting friends to come to Washington to surround and protect the White House.”

The left World Socialist Web Site joins the liberal chorus: “In an act unprecedented in American history, Donald Trump has repudiated the Constitution and is attempting to establish a presidential dictatorship, supported by the military, police and far-right fascistic militia acting under his command.” Meanwhile, in the real world, more than 51 million Americans have filed for unemployment since March. Some 27 million people have lost their health insurance on top of around 30 million who were uninsured before, in the face of the massive pandemic. The Federal Reserve has pumped $7 trillion into corporate bonds, municipal securities, loans and grants to business, while millions are going hungry. The pandemic death toll in the U.S. is 168,345 as it rages out of control. California cannot even accurately count the number of cases being reported.

[..] The obsession with the person of Trump is a testament to the political bankruptcy of the increasingly anemic successors of the New Deal and their epigones on the left who, every four years, admonish us that never before have the stakes been so high: we have to vote for the lesser evil. Given their view of the danger of a fascist coup, we should put aside a progressive agenda and vote for the former senator from Mastercard and learn to love endless imperial war and increasing austerity for working people in a repressive security state.

The liberal-left pundits reproach us to vote Democrat simply because the alternative is not Trump. Recall similar warnings about Bush and Romney, who are now chums of Democrats in high places. Vote, but not for any issue, because the so-called liberal agenda is today devoid of issues. Liberalism is dead. Indicative is its standard-bearer barely showing vital signs. Biden is being told to stay in his basement and even sit out his nominating convention.

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The Hollywood Reporter’s only loyalty lies with Hollywood.

The Plot Against The President (HR)

There’s a hush-hush Russiagate documentary on the horizon from a director who hails from Hollywood royalty. But this one makes the case for President Trump. Amanda Milius, daughter of legendary screenwriter-director John Milius and a State Department alum, has directed The Plot Against the President, based on Lee Smith’s 2019 best seller of the same name. Milius, who optioned the book in manuscript form last summer and stepped down in early March from her post as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Content in the State Department’s Bureau of Global Public Affairs, began working on the doc in secrecy shortly thereafter.

Over the past three months, she interviewed Russiagate critics including Congressman Devin Nunes, Donald Trump Jr., Rudy Giuliani, Kimberly Guilfoyle, Mike Cernovich and Roger Stone as well as Gen. Michael Flynn’s attorney Sidney Powell. Milius’ father, the screenwriter of such classics as Apocalypse Now and Dirty Harry, is such a larger-than-life figure in Hollywood that he has inspired characters in at least two films: The Big Lebowski(played by John Goodman) and Zeroville (Seth Rogen). His politics have long deviated from the industry’s centrist Democratic leanings (he and Charlton Heston served on the board of the NRA at the same time). Amanda, who attended USC’s School of Cinematic Arts and worked in the film industry for a decade, also shares his pro-Trump sentiments.

[..] The film was financed by a handful of private investors that the Washington-based director declines to name. She produced alongside Jonathan Eisenman. The production companies are Wollman Prods. and 1AMDC Prods. The producers are currently in talks with a few distributors and are planning an Oct. 1 release in the run-up to the 2020 presidential election. Milius says the film will offer several additional bombshells that weren’t included in the book, whose thesis is that a coup was engineered by the American establishment elite, including the media, and targeted the president as well as the democratic process.

Trailer The Plot Against The President

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Well, actually she didn’t, it was just protocol. After that she proudly supported Biden. After being snubbed, and seeing her mentor Bernie be snubbed again. Have these people no pride?

AOC ‘Snubs’ Joe Biden In Speech Nominating Bernie Sanders (Ind.)

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has delivered a snub to Joe Biden when she delivered a speech endorsing her progressive mentor Bernie Sanders for president. In words that likely infuriated supporters of Mr Biden, the New York congresswoman spoke to second the nomination of Mr Sanders as the party’s official candidate. “I want to thank everyone towards a better, more just future for our country and our world,” she said, speaking to second the Vermont senator after he was formally nominated by labour activist and lawyer Bob King. She said she sought to create “mass people’s movement dedicated to addressing the wounds of racial injustice, colonisation, misogyny, and homophobia”.


When Mr Sanders, 78, announced in April he was suspending his campaign for the presidency, after Mr Biden made a series of stunning primary wins to breathe life into a run that appeared dead, he said his name would remain on the ballot and that he would continue to collect delegates. The purpose was not vanity, he said, as some critics said, but in order to better put pressure on Mr Biden to adopt more progressive policies than he might otherwise have felt obliged to do so. Already that has resulted in a succession of policy think thanks that agreed to several policy points on the economy, the environment and criminal and racial justice. Ms Ocasio-Cortez, 30, praised the campaign of Mr Sanders and other progressive candidates who “reimagined systems of immigration and foreign policy that turn away from the violence and xenophobia of our past”.

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Oh, c’mon, let me have some fun… All the other stuff is already so serious.

Biden ‘Is Just Lost,’ Says Obama’s White House Doctor (WE)

The chief White House doctor to former President Barack Obama is worried about the mental health and stamina of former Vice President Joe Biden, suggesting that “something is not right” with the Democratic presidential nominee. “The best way I can describe him every time I see him is that he’s just lost,” said Dr. Ronny Jackson, the former White House physician to Obama and President Trump. “I won’t make any particular diagnosis about dementia. … But what I will say is that something is not right,” added the retired Navy rear admiral who recently won a House GOP primary in Texas. And it is getting so bad that he is “not comfortable” with Biden being commander in chief.


“I’m not,” he said of the top Democrat, set to be nominated by the Democratic Party for president on Thursday. Jackson’s comments are in an upcoming book from Donald Trump Jr., Liberal Privilege: Joe Biden and the Democrats’ Defense of the Indefensible, out Sept. 1 but already selling fast on his website, DonJr.com. In the book, the president’s son and top campaign supporter addressed current issues and included interviews with key current affairs figures, such as Jackson, who began working in the White House Medical Unit under former President George W. Bush and served as “physician to the president” during the Obama and Trump administrations. He stressed to Trump Jr. that he hasn’t reviewed Biden’s records but said that he witnessed the changes to Obama’s vice president in person and over time.

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How do you like the coating in your intestines?

At Least 10 Times More Plastic In The Atlantic Than Presumed (Phys.org)

The mass of ‘invisible’ microplastics found in the upper waters of the Atlantic Ocean is approximately 12- 21 million tons, according to research published in the journal Nature Communications today. Significantly, this figure is only for three of the most common types of plastic litter in a limited size range. Yet, it is comparable in magnitude to estimates of all plastic waste that has entered the Atlantic Ocean over the past 65 years: 17 million tons. This suggests that the supply of plastic to the ocean have been substantially underestimated. The lead author of the paper, Dr. Katsiaryna Pabortsava from the National Oceanography Centre (NOC), said “Previously, we couldn’t balance the mass of floating plastic we observed with the mass we thought had entered the ocean since 1950.

This is because earlier studies hadn’t been measuring the concentrations of ‘invisible’ microplastic particles beneath the ocean surface. Our research is the first to have done this across the entire Atlantic, from the UK to the Falklands.” Co-author, Professor Richard Lampitt, also from the NOC, added “if we assume that the concentration of microplastics we measured at around 200 meters deep is representative of that in the water mass to the seafloor below with an average depth of about 3000 meters, then the Atlantic Ocean might hold about 200 million tons of plastic litter in this limited polymer type and size category. This is much more than is thought to have been supplied.”

“In order to determine the dangers of plastic contamination to the environment and to humans we need good estimates of the amount and characteristics of this material, how it enters the ocean, how it degrades and then how toxic it is at these concentrations. This paper demonstrates that scientists have had a totally inadequate understanding of even the simplest of these factors, how much is there, and it would seem our estimates of how much is dumped into the ocean has been massively underestimated.”

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May 172020
 


Gerry Cranham They all fall in the round I call 1963

 

There was this comment at the Automatic Earth yesterday that got me thinking. It was sort of wrapped in a bit of -more- innuendo about health officials not getting the results they were looking for in COVID19 numbers, as if the whole virus event is some goal-seeked conspiracy. You’ll be familiar with it by now.

I said back in the day that measures like lockdowns can’t last long, because people are social animals. You would just have hoped that when they were finally, far too late, decided upon, that countries, states, communities, would have made the best of them. But it’s been, and more importantly will be, an awful mess, other than in a few places.

And I did say that too, that the so-called leadership in the world today is good at declaring a lockdown, albeit too late, but not at anything else, not at timing it, not at executing it, let alone at managing the way out of it in reopening societies. It is all so predictable.

But people have been solidly dug into their trenches now, after 2 months, and they’ve done so much reading, and watching pundits, that they’re no longer looking for news, they’re looking for opinions, ones that match their own darkest notions. We’ve come to the point that if there’s nothing suspicious going on, then that’s mighty suspicious.

 

And there’s plenty of such opinions, and plenty among them that lay the blame for freedoms and livelihoods lost somewhere, anywhere. So yeah, in that sense it’s time to reopen, the mental health sense. But not, unfortunately, in the physical health sense. The virus is still prevalent in most communities and many a community will pay a steep price.

But nobody is aware of it, it seems, because nobody really knows what will happen. They’ve only all heard the clamoring for a return to normal. That there will be no return to normal is something nobody wants to tell them. How many people do you think know there’s never been a vaccine for a coronavirus? How many people know that there is no need for a vaccine?

Everyone’s been told to wait for a vaccine, which suits Big Pharma, which gets billions for something they don’t even need to deliver, just try, and it suits the politicians who can all say there’s nothing they can do to prevent more suffering until the magic pill shows up. They can say they opened up because there was so much pressure on them.

But yes, that comment. It made me think that perhaps people don’t understand viruses very well, and also that it’s a very good lead for a description of how they “function”.

 

Is this a fiercely contagious pathogen or not? If it’s so contagious, then it isn’t particularly lethal. If it’s incredibly lethal, then it isn’t so contagious.

 

First of all, remember a virus doesn’t think or plan or have a strategy, none of that. If conditions are right a virus will multiply. And while doing so, it will mutate. These things happen in virustime, counted in time sequences as infinitesimal as the size of a virus itself. And one in a billion or so a mutation will stick for more than two nanoseconds, because it offers an advantage to the virus.

That’s how it gets to spread from, first, animal hosts within the same species, and then, in very rare circumstances, to other species, like humans. And even then it’s exceedingly rare that a virus could do harm to a human being. The odds of that happening are maybe one in a trillion or something, I doubt anyone could tell you, including virologists.

The virus “wants” one thing: to multiply. Just like any other being, including us. And being both very lethal and very contagious doesn’t help it do that (not that it’s trying). Earlier well-known coronaviruses like SARS and MERS got that balance wrong. Because that’s what it is: a trade off between lethality and contagiousness. Neither can be too high.

SARS is noted by the WHO for a case fatality rate (CFR) of 9.6%. At that percentage, with the lethality and contagiousness it had/has, the virus lacks the time to jump from old host to new host, especially when existing and potential hosts are being isolated. MERS had a 34% CFR, and obviously didn’t prevail long.

MERS never even really left Saudi Arabia (and appears to have never achieved human-to-human transmission). SARS did get to other countries, I remember especially Canada, but that whole epidemic was over in 7 months.

 

You need the right amount of contagiousness combined with the right amount of lethality in order to have a pandemic. Jump from host to host, but not too fast, because in no time every potential host would be infected and develop antibodies (herd immunity). And not too lethal, because not enough “old hosts” would be left to infect enough “new hosts”.

The present SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus appears to have struck a delicate balance. People may say it’s not all that contagious, and it’s not so lethal, but it’s those qualities that enabled it to be a pandemic. One thing it hasn’t achieved yet is becoming endemic, and we would be wise to keep it that way. But the odds that we will have a vaccine before we can do that are slim.

Where to go from here is very opaque. People shout out for the world to be opened, but all they will get is a small part of that world. Mass events, bars, restaurants, subways, planes, and so much more, can no longer function the way they did. As long as the virus is out there, it may be ‘only’ modestly contagious and lethal, but enough that people will be willing to avoid many things that were considered normal before 2020.

That will lead to huge changes in society, enormous amounts of jobs that will not return. If we fail to adapt to those things as badly as we failed in our lockdowns, the changes can only become even larger, even deeper, until there may be little left that we still readily recognize.

There are still very few, if any, countries where everyone is tested for SARS-CoV-2. We will need to test everyone at least once a week, and twice on Sundays. And isolate whoever tests positive. It didn’t need to come to this, but we all screwed up something awful, except for a very small number of countries and societies.

 

Get ready for the next round; there is no other way out. And if we let the virus become endemic, and it returns in waves of every year or so, the testing regimen will have to continue too. Until there is a vaccine, but that may never come. Or we reach herd immunity, but that is merely a fickle concept used mostly for cattle and may never come either. Or only at the cost of millions of lives.

We need to prevent the virus from “finding” new hosts. It is that easy. And there are ways to do it. But they don’t rhyme with “I won’t give up my freedom for your safety”. If that’s the route we take, we’re all going to live in very small and separated worlds. And what does “freedom” mean anymore then?

It’s obviously much easier to join the crowd and claim Bill Gates wants to force vaccinate us all, and the elites want to enslave us; and no doubt there’s a few psychos with crazy dreams. But maybe just maybe this is, or should be, more about us, about what we do, what powers we have, and what we do with those.

If the elites, or whoever else, wants to use the virus to make you their bitch, don’t let them. But do you really believe that letting a virus with just the right mix of lethal and contagious, run wild and undetected in your society, is the way to achieve that? Or might it be better to wear a face mask in public for a bit and get tested, or test yourself, until the virus is gone?

If you choose door number one, don’t you agree that you should blame yourself for that choice, not the so-called elites? Maybe you should take responsibility for your own lives, not blame whatever goes wrong on others. Maybe that’s a higher degree of freedom than saying we can’t do anything about it anyway, so let 50 million people die as long as I am free to go to McDonalds.

And you would be playing into Bill Gates’s hands to boot if you do that, provided you believe that he wants to depopulate the planet. How’s that work, he’s your bogeyman, him and the elites, and therefore you give them what they want? They want to depopulate, so you say sure, let the virus roam, while you could prevent it from doing that?

You might want to look up “freedom” in a dictionary.

 

 

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May 172020
 


Dorothea Lange Plantation overseer and his field hands, Mississippi Delta 1936

 

A Third Of COVID19 Hospital Patients Develop Dangerous Blood Clots (BBC)
China Adds Long-Term Organ Damage To List Of Effects Of COVID19 (SCMP)
May 16 Update: US COVID-19 Test Results (CR)
Llamas Could Be Our Secret Weapon Against Coronavirus (G.)
Lack Of Immunity Makes China Vulnerable To Another Wave Of Coronavirus (CNN)
Battle Looms At WHO Amid Pressure On China Over Coronavirus Inquiry (SCMP)
Trump Hints He May Reverse Course And Restore WHO Funding (F.)
Q2 US GDP Forecasts: Probably Around 30% Annual Rate Decline (CR)
Difficulties Abound On NYC’s Road To Reopen (Xinhua)
Brennan Claims Release Of Names Is ‘Abominable Abuse Of Authority’ (Fox)
Had Enough? (Jim Kunstler)
Economic Growth: Who Needs It? (Ms.)

 

 

• Over the past 24 hours US had +23,117 new cases (total 88,851) and +1,277 new deaths.
Note: both numbers are still well below White House predictions for the summer of 30,000 and 3,000, respectively

• Reported global new cases yesterday reached 100,184, new high.

• Russia reports 9,709 new coronavirus infections (yesterday: 9,200)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Note: new global cases yesterday 100,184

Cases 4,743,181 (+ 97,795 from yesterday’s 4,645,386)

Deaths 313,703 (+ 4,723 from yesterday’s 308,980)

 

 

 

From Worldometer yesterday evening -before their day’s close-

 

 

From Worldometer

 

 

From SCMP:

 

 

From COVID19Info.live:

 

 

 

 

This by now is obvious. But I have my doubts over the following: “..This change in the blood is the result of severe inflammation in the lungs..”, because I haven’t seen any proof that it’s the immune system which makes the blood clot. Far as I can see, the stickiness could occur (e.g if virus impacts hemoglobin) before the blood reaches the lungs, and maybe even worsen the inflammation.

A Third Of COVID19 Hospital Patients Develop Dangerous Blood Clots (BBC)

Up to 30% of patients who are seriously ill with coronavirus are developing dangerous blood clots, according to medical experts. They say the clots, also known as thrombosis, could be contributing to the number of people dying. Severe inflammation in the lungs – a natural response of the body to the virus – is behind their formation. Patients worldwide are being affected by many medical complications of the virus, some of which can be fatal. Back in March, as coronavirus was spreading across the globe, doctors started seeing far higher rates of clots in patients admitted to hospital than they would normally expect. And there have been other surprises, including the discovery of hundreds of micro-clots in the lungs of some patients.

The virus has also increased cases of deep vein thrombosis – blood clots usually found in the leg – which can be life-threatening when fragments break off and move up the body into the lungs, blocking blood vessels. [..] “With a huge outpouring of data over the past few weeks I think it has become apparent that thrombosis is a major problem,” says Roopen Arya, professor of thrombosis and haemostasis at King’s College Hospital, London. “Particularly in severely affected Covid patients in critical care, where some of the more recent studies show that nearly half the patients have pulmonary embolism or blood clot on the lungs.” He believes the number of critically ill coronavirus patients developing blood clots could be significantly higher than the published data in Europe of up to 30%.

The professor’s blood sciences team in the hospital has been analysing samples from patients showing how coronavirus is changing their blood making it much more sticky. And sticky blood can lead to blood clots. This change in the blood is the result of severe inflammation in the lungs, a natural response of the body to the virus. “In severely affected patients we are seeing an outpouring of chemicals in the blood and this has a knock-on effect of activating the blood clotting,” says Prof Arya. And all this ultimately causes a patient’s condition to deteriorate. According to thrombosis expert Prof Beverley Hunt, sticky blood is having wider repercussions than just blood clots – it’s also leading to higher rates of strokes and heart attacks. “And yes sticky blood is contributing to high mortality rates,” she says.

Read more …

Which may all occur because of the impact on hemoglobin.

China Adds Long-Term Organ Damage To List Of Effects Of COVID19 (SCMP)

Understanding is growing of the effects of Sars-CoV-2, the official name of the coronavirus that causes Covid-19, on the organs of patients – even after they apparently recover. While most patients, especially those with mild and moderate symptoms, can recover without long-term consequences to their health, studies indicate that those with severe symptoms can have organ damage and require a much longer time for rehabilitation. The commission said some Covid-19 patients might also develop heart problems such as angina and arrhythmia – conditions that could result directly from the virus or arise after a patient has been bedridden for a long time. The guidelines also list potential mental health problems resulting from Covid-19, including depression, insomnia, eating disorders and various changes in cognitive functions.


Other problems identified in the guidelines include muscle and limb-function loss. But kidney damage was not among the conditions named, despite a number of studies citing it as a potential long-term consequence. According to a study published in the journal Kidney International on Wednesday, one-third of 5,449 Covid-19 patients surveyed by researchers at Northwell Health, the biggest health provider in New York state, developed acute kidney failure. Lead researcher Kenar Jhaveri, associate chief of nephrology at Hofstra/Northwell in Great Neck, New York, told Reuters that 14.3 per cent of those with kidney failure required dialysis. There have also been reports of the coronavirus attacking the skin, the central nervous system and blood vessels, resulting in clogging and strokes.

Read more …

The myth that 1 million tests per day would be enough is persistent. A myth because it would take a full year to test everyone.

May 16 Update: US COVID-19 Test Results (CR)

The US might be able to test 400,000 to 600,000 people per day sometime in May according to Dr. Fauci – and that might be enough for test and trace. However, the US might need more than 900,000 tests per day according to Dr. Jha of Harvard’s Global Health Institute. There were 356,994 test results reported over the last 24 hours. This data is from the COVID Tracking Project. The percent positive over the last 24 hours was 7.0% (red line). The US probably needs enough tests to keep the percentage positive well below 5%. (probably much lower based on testing in New Zealand). NOTE: A few states are apparently including antibody tests with virus tests. The Covid tracking project is working to straighten that out.

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Just let them spit in your face and you’re fine.“In addition to larger antibodies like ours, llamas have small ones that can sneak into spaces on viral proteins that are too tiny for human antibodies..”

Llamas Could Be Our Secret Weapon Against Coronavirus (G.)

The solution to the coronavirus may have been staring us in the face this whole time, lazily chewing on a carrot. All we need, it seems, is llamas. A study published last week in the journal Cell found that antibodies in llamas’ blood could offer a defense against the coronavirus. In addition to larger antibodies like ours, llamas have small ones that can sneak into spaces on viral proteins that are too tiny for human antibodies, helping them to fend off the threat. The hope is that the llama antibodies could help protect humans who have not been infected. International researchers owe their findings to a llama named Winter, a four-year-old resident of Belgium.

Her antibodies had already proven themselves able to fight Sars and Mers, leading researchers to speculate that they could work against the virus behind Covid-19 – and indeed, in cell cultures at least, they were effective against it. Researchers are now working towards clinical trials. “If it works, llama Winter deserves a statue,” Dr Xavier Saelens, a Ghent University virologist and study author, told the New York Times. To any llama aficionado, this news should come as no surprise. The animals have developed a reputation for healing. Llama antibodies have been a fixture in the fight against disease for years, with researchers investigating their potency against HIV and other viruses.

And their soothing powers go beyond the microscopic. Llamas have become exam-season fixtures at a number of top US colleges. George Caldwell, who raises llamas in Sonora, California, brings his trusted associates to the University of California, Berkeley, UC Davis, Stanford, and other northern California universities and high schools, where their tranquility is contagious, helping students overcome end-of-term anxiety. “When you’re around a llama, you become very calm and at peace,” one Berkeley senior said at a campus event last year.

Read more …

CNN has an article on Dr. Zhong Nanshan, the Chinese government’s senior medical adviser, who, as featured prominently at the Automatic Earth at the time, infamously claimed in late January that the epidemic would be over in 10 days, so early February.

Lack Of Immunity Makes China Vulnerable To Another Wave Of Coronavirus (CNN)

China still faces the “big challenge” of a potential second wave of Covid-19 infections, the country’s top respiratory authority has warned, with the lack of immunity among the community a serious concern as the race to develop a vaccine continues. Dr. Zhong Nanshan, the Chinese government’s senior medical adviser and the public face of the country’s fight against Covid-19, also confirmed in an exclusive interview with CNN on Saturday that local authorities in Wuhan, the city where the novel coronavirus was first reported in December, had suppressed key details about the magnitude of the initial outbreak.

China has reported more than 82,000 coronavirus cases, with at least 4,633 deaths, according to data from the country’s National Health Commission (NHC). The number of new infections surged quickly in late January, prompting city lockdowns and nationwide travel bans. By early February, China was reporting as many as 3,887 fresh cases a day. A month later, however, daily cases had dropped into the double digits — while in the US, the number of daily infections skyrocketed, from 47 new cases on March 6 to 22,562 by the end of the month. Having now largely contained the virus, life in China is slowly returning to normal. Lockdowns have eased and some schools and factories have reopened across the country.

But Zhong said Chinese authorities should not be complacent, with the danger of a second wave of infections looming large. Fresh clusters of coronavirus cases have emerged across China in recent weeks, in Wuhan as well as the northeastern provinces of Heilongjiang and Jilin. “The majority of … Chinese at the moment are still susceptible of the Covid-19 infection, because (of) a lack of immunity,” Zhong said. “We are facing (a) big challenge, it’s not better than the foreign countries I think at the moment.”

[..] Three US companies are already testing their vaccines on humans, according to the World Health Organization. They’re still in phase 1 or phase 2 trials, which typically involve giving the vaccine to dozens or hundreds of study subjects. Zhong said three Chinese vaccines are under clinical trials in the country — however a “perfect” solution was likely to be “years” away. “We have to test again and again and again … by using different kinds of vaccines. It’s too early to draw any conclusion which kind of vaccine is available for this kind of coronavirus … that’s why I suggest that the final approval of vaccine (will) take much longer,” he said.

Read more …

China’s going to stall.

Battle Looms At WHO Amid Pressure On China Over Coronavirus Inquiry (SCMP)

The World Health Organisation has been on the front line coordinating the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic. When its decision-making body gathers, virtually, for its annual meeting on Monday, it will have another battle on its hands, as tensions escalate between China, the United States and other countries over Beijing’s response to the outbreak. The coronavirus will be the focus for the World Health Assembly meeting, to be attended by all 194 WHO member states plus observers, and where policies and budgets are reviewed and approved. But all eyes will be on how countries – including the US, Australia, Canada, France and Germany – pursue an investigation into China’s handling of the pandemic within the framework of the global health body.

That could include taking the Chinese government to the international court. Leaders of these countries have already made clear that they want an inquiry, including investigating the origin of the virus, whether it was initially covered up by China, and if Beijing was slow to tell the world that the virus was being transmitted between humans. The WHO has itself been under fire, attacked for praising China’s pandemic response as “transparent” despite Beijing’s suppression of whistle-blowers and information at the start of the outbreak. Under the WHO constitution, the global health agency can refer unresolved disputes to the International Court of Justice in The Hague, the main legal organ of the United Nations. But health and legal experts said that was unlikely – and even if it did happen, the ICJ would not be able to enforce a decision.

“The WHO has never taken another state to the ICJ, and I do not anticipate that,” said Steven Hoffman, professor of global health, law and political science at York University’s Global Strategy Lab in Toronto. “If it happens it will be unprecedented.” Atul Alexander, assistant professor of law at West Bengal National University of Juridical Sciences, said it would be impossible to enforce a decision by the ICJ as it would need to be enacted by the UN Security Council, where China has veto power as one of five permanent members. “China would have to consent to the jurisdiction of the ICJ, which is never going to happen,” Alexander said.

Read more …

Only, that’s not what he said: “Have not made [a] final decision. All funds are frozen.”

Trump Hints He May Reverse Course And Restore WHO Funding (F.)

President Donald Trump said his administration was considering restoring partial funding to the World Health Organization Saturday morning after suspending U.S. support a month ago in a row over how the group has handled the coronavirus pandemic. On Friday evening, reports began to surface that Trump was prepared to restore about 10% of previous U.S. payments to WHO, reported to roughly match China’s share. Trump hit back at those reports Saturday morning, saying in a tweet that “this is just one of numerous concepts being considered… Have not made [a] final decision. All funds are frozen.”


He announced he would withhold U.S. funding from the WHO on April 14, and accused the group of “severely mismanaging and covering up” the coronavirus pandemic, and said he wouldn’t consider funding until a “60-to-90-day” investigation was completed. WHO officials and China have denied Trump’s claims. The U.S. was the group’s biggest financial supporter, and reportedly provided about $400 million to $500 million of the WHO’s $4.8 billion budget, or about 15%. According to NPR, the U.S. was already nearly $200 million behind on payments to the WHO when Trump announced he would halt future contributions.

Read more …

We’re going to have to look at how sick the economy was beforehand, or we’ll never get any wiser.

Q2 US GDP Forecasts: Probably Around 30% Annual Rate Decline (CR)

Important: GDP is reported at a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR). So a 30% Q2 decline is around 7% decline from Q1 (SA).
• From Merrill Lynch: “We are tracking -5.2% qoq saar for 1Q GDP and expect a -30% qoq saar plunge in 2Q. [SAAR May 15 estimate]”.

• From the NY Fed Nowcasting Report “The New York Fed Staff Nowcast stands at -31.1% for 2020:Q2. [May 15 estimate]”.

• And from the Altanta Fed: GDPNow “The GDPNow model estimate for real GDP growth (seasonally adjusted annual rate) in the second quarter of 2020 is -42.8 percent on May 15, down from -34.9 percent on May 8. [May 15 estimate]”

Read more …

Chinese trolling. Still, reopening New York is a major gamble.

Difficulties Abound On NYC’s Road To Reopen (Xinhua)

Life came to a grinding halt for about 8.3 million residents in New York City when a statewide “PAUSE” order went into effect to curb the spread of COVID-19 nearly two months ago. So far, schools, businesses, and Broadway theaters have been shuttered, with health care workers fighting tirelessly to save lives in overwhelmed hospitals. On Friday, five regions in the central and northern parts of New York state reopened following a phased strategy. Those regions, largely remote and account for less than one-fifth of the state’s population, have not been hit hard by the pandemic. New York City still has to wait, as it has not met the requirements for reopening in new hospitalization, share of total hospital beds and ICU beds available — three of the seven benchmarks set by the state government.


Mayor Bill de Blasio said this month that the city would not see eased restrictions before June, and a true reopening will be “a few months away at minimum.” Despite a flattened curve, the data in New York City remain staggering. By Saturday afternoon, the city’s health department has reported 189,031 cases, more than those of countries including France and Germany. A death toll of 20,576 accounts for nearly a quarter of the national total. “While the (daily new) case count appears to be decreasing, there is still a need for it to go lower, and to have the ability to detect and trace the contacts of cases to prevent a major resurgence in the virus,” Jeff Schlegelmilch, deputy director for the National Center for Disaster Preparedness at Columbia University’s Earth Institute, told Xinhua.

“In a densely populated place like New York City, none of these things are simple, and all of this needs to be done at a large scale with quick reaction to changes in conditions,” he noted. Experts and officials underlined the significance of testing at the beginning of the crisis in early March. Both the mayor and New York Governor Andrew Cuomo have repeatedly vowed to expand testing capacity, especially in lower-income and minority communities. After more than two months’ efforts, however, the supply still falls short of the demand. “Lack of widespread testing was our Achilles’ heel from day one,” said de Blasio on Thursday. “We’re still playing catch-up.”


Also on Thursday, the mayor announced that any person with COVID-19 symptoms as well as anyone who has been in close contact with a confirmed case is now eligible to receive a test in New York City, which means these basic containment measures have never been fully conducted in the epicenter of the pandemic. Notably, the importance of contact tracing was largely ignored or deemed a mission impossible by local officials. During a press briefing on April 3, New York City’s Health Department Commissioner Oxiris Barbot said contact tracing was “not a good use of our resources” and the city has gone “past the point of contact tracing.” It was not until late April that both Cuomo and de Blasio announced their plans to hire thousands of people to get trained to be contact tracers. The tardy response at the local level reflects the whole picture of the nation. “The United States in general is behind the curve, literally and figuratively, in terms of testing and contact tracing,” said Schlegelmilch.

Read more …

Is this just desperation? He’s one of the names, after all. He wanted to unmask Flynn, but doesn’t want to be unmasked himself.

Also, I’m so tired of hearing how the Russians are going to try again. It shows you how an absolutely dead meme can live on as a zombie in partisan media.

Brennan Claims Release Of Names Is ‘Abominable Abuse Of Authority’ (Fox)

Former CIA director John Brennan, one of the officials who sought to “unmask” Michael Flynn during the presidential transition period, claimed Thursday the release of Obama-era names was an “abominable abuse of authority.” He called the recent actions by the Department of Justice to drop the case against Flynn combined with the release of names “blatant political corruption at the highest levels of U.S. government.” “When you have the administration– the White House, the attorney general, the acting head of the intelligence community all acting in concert to try to advance the personal interests of Mr. Trump… I think this is very, very serious,” Brennan told MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace.

“I’m just hoping that individuals like Chris Wray who is a remarkable public servant, will continue to stay strong in the face of this type of abominable abuse of authority,” he said. Brennan, however, was not pressed by MSNBC’s Wallace and Brian Williams on why he sought the name of Flynn in the intercepted phone conversations of Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak. Rather, he lashed out over the disclosure of the names of the Obama administration officials who purportedly requested to “unmask” Flynn’s identity. Brennan also said he feared Trump officials were not going to stop Russian interference in the presidential election.

“As we have talked about the upcoming November election, how the Russians and others are going to seek to try to once again interfere and influence the outcome, I just am very concerned that some of those at the very top are not going to fulfill the duties that are entrusted to them by the American people,” Brennan remarked.

Read more …

How desperate is Obama’s renewed attack on Trump? What’s with the timing?

Had Enough? (Jim Kunstler)

Last weekend, in a well-leaked conference call, it appears, Judge Sullivan took marching orders from former President Obama who suggested snaring General Flynn on a perjury rap for withdrawing his guilty plea, and whaddaya know, the stratagem laid itself out this past week like a fully-crafted macramé, all the little tufts and knots neatly in place – thanks to the busy little fingers of Lawfare attorneys burning the midnight oil all week to get the thing hoisted up on the wall. The tortured logic of the scheme was really something to behold: by withdrawing a guilty plea Flynn had entered under oath, he would be guilty of lying to the court about being guilty in the first place, and therefore had perjured himself. Imagine the interior of the legal minds responsible for that: dank chambers of rot crawling with centipedes and mealybugs of subterfuge.


The judge’s transparently perfidious moves revealed the desperation of Mr. Obama and scores of former and current officials allied with him, who are themselves liable for prosecution in the unraveling tapestry of RussiaGate. There is a sentiment welling up in this land that enough is enough with these devious pranks of crooked lawyers, and today, being Friday, would be an excellent moment for the DC District US Court of Appeals to issue a writ of mandamus for Judge Sullivan to cut the shit and get on with his bound duty to put the Flynn case to rest. A nice added touch, if necessary, would be to kick Judge Sullivan’s seditious ass off the case and replace him with a judge who understands established law and precedent.

Read more …

Always a relevant question, but perhaps not most appropriate when the walls are caving in.

Economic Growth: Who Needs It? (Ms.)

Ardern hasn’t claimed to be post-growth, but her government’s aim of well-being provided a simpler, faster response to the pandemic than U.S. officials worried by GDP. In early March, with only eight reported cases of COVID-19 in a population of 4.8 million people, New Zealand anticipated the impact on an economy dominated by tourism. They quickly created a twelve billion Kiwi (NZ$) stimulus package (about $7.3 billion in US$), equal to about four percent of their nation’s GDP. Ninety percent of those Kiwi’s went directly to people for income support, wage subsidies, and tax relief for small businesses. Only a fraction went to their airline industry.

By comparison, in late March, the US reported 136,880 cases of COVID-19 in a population of 327 million. Our $2 trillion CARES (Coronavirus Aid, Relief & Economic Security) stimulus equaled 9.8 percent of GDP, yet only thirty percent, or about $604 billion, was slotted for direct payments and expanded unemployment benefits. Some mortgage and student loan payments were suspended, but not forgiven. Fully a quarter of CARES money went to big corporate loans, mostly for airlines to the tune of about $58 billion. A set aside for “national security” is widely believed to be for Boeing—remember them?

The Small Business Administration (SBA) got $350 billion, nearly 20 percent, but almost entirely for loans, and to businesses not as small as most women-owned micro-businesses. Another quarter of the CARES Act increases health and education funding through state block grants, municipal funding and increases for SNAP and WIC food programs. All bring with them a world of bureaucratic complications for the majority women in this crisis.

Read more …

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