Apr 302024
 
 April 30, 2024  Posted by at 9:00 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  59 Responses »


Paul Gauguin Road in Tahiti 1891

 

Musk and Sacks Slam Washington’s ‘Forever War’ Ukraine Plan (RT)
Russia’s Mideast Clout ‘Very Strong,’ US Looks ‘Ridiculous’ – Macgregor (Sp.)
Biden Looks To Prevent Future President From Ending Ukraine War (ZH)
Alvin Bragg and The Art of Not Taking Law Too Seriously (Turley)
The Interlocking of Strategic Paradigms (Alastair Crooke)
Supreme Court Rejects Elon Musk’s “Free Speech” Appeal In SEC Case (ZH)
Hunter Biden’s Lawyers Threaten Fox News (RT)
Tucker Carlson Interviews Conservative Russian Philosopher Aleksandr Dugin (RT)
Pep Talk on a Dark Day (Kunstler)
US Working To Prevent ICC Arrest Warrant for Netanyahu (Antiwar)
The Travesties of the Trump Trials (Victor Davis Hanson)
The Shieldmaiden Takes the Field Against The Destroyers of the West (PCR)

 

 

Eva
https://twitter.com/i/status/1784988182351684056

 

 

BDay
https://twitter.com/i/status/1784805906586194412

 

 

jerry
https://twitter.com/i/status/1784720323864150058

 

 

The storm
https://twitter.com/i/status/1784969043864125524

 

 

Mike Davis

 

 

Passover

 

 

 

 

“..Sacks described Ukraine’s failed 2023 summer counteroffensive against Russia as “one of the biggest debacles in the history of modern warfare.”

Musk and Sacks Slam Washington’s ‘Forever War’ Ukraine Plan (RT)

Two of America’s most influential tech entrepreneurs, Elon Musk and David Sacks, have expressed concern over a security agreement currently in the works between the US and Ukraine. Former PayPal chief David Sacks took to X (formerly Twitter) on Sunday to warn that the controversial $61 billion in aid to Kiev approved by Washington earlier this month “was just the beginning.” He was commenting on a statement made by Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky, who said that his team and the administration of US President Joe Biden were “working on fixing specific levels of support… for the next ten years, including armed support, financial, political, and joint arms production.” “The next two US presidents won’t be able to switch it off,” Sacks, who’s also the founder of the corporate social network Yammer, wrote on X. In separate posts the entrepreneur went on to mention recent reports that NATO allies were working to “Trump-proof” weapons for Ukraine and claimed that the goal of the current US administration was “to turn Ukraine into a Forever War.”

“This is insane. The forever war,” Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk wrote in response to Sacks’ posts. The US will vote for a new president in November. Presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump has spoken out against “handing out gifts of billions and billions of dollars” in aid to Kiev and said earlier this month that his team was considering “doing it in the form of a loan.” According to Politico, the US and other Western countries have been looking into a range of options that could help maintain the flow of arms to Kiev if Trump becomes president. Last month, Sacks described Ukraine’s failed 2023 summer counteroffensive against Russia as “one of the biggest debacles in the history of modern warfare.” In a post on X, the venture capitalist suggested that the Washington elite should be held accountable for talking up the ill-fated operation.

Musk has also long voiced criticism about Washington’s involvement in the Ukraine conflict. Last week, he challenged the Biden administration to define what a Ukrainian “victory” would look like after a senior US official claimed that with Washingon’s help Kiev can defeat Russia. US lawmakers approved $61 billion in additional aid for Ukraine earlier this month, after House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-Louisiana) overrode opposition in his own party to pass the bill with unanimous Democrat support. The Biden administration ran out of funding for Ukraine aid earlier this year after using up $113 billion in previously approved assistance packages. Republican lawmakers have argued that Biden is merely prolonging the bloodshed in Ukraine without offering a clear strategy for victory or a peace deal with Russia.

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“The Gaza crisis, pundits noted, threw into focus the erosion of Washington’s power in the region.”

Russia’s Mideast Clout ‘Very Strong,’ US Looks ‘Ridiculous’ – Macgregor (Sp.)

The US has been trying to maintain a facade of diplomacy amid the tectonic geopolitical shifts currently underway, while in fact blatantly continuing to push its own regional interests. This holds true for Washington’s stance with respect to the latest spiral of the Middle East crisis. Russia’s position in the Mideast is “strong,” while the Unites States looks “ridiculous,” is the frank assessment given by retired US Army Col. Douglas Macgregor in a new post on X. Casting a critical eye on the US strategy in the Middle East, the former Pentagon advisor wrote: “Strategically, Putin holds all the cards in the Middle East. He is widely respected in the region and has practiced restraint. If you look at this like a branding exercise, our branding is seriously damaged in the Middle East. We look ridiculous and Russia looks strong.”

The Middle East crisis continues to simmer, with Israel’s war on Hamas in the Gaza Strip generating a massive humanitarian crisis and Palestinian civilian death toll. However, the Biden administration, which continues to provide Israel with security assistance, has been woefully inept in its crisis management efforts. Suffice it to recall how Joe Biden was snubbed by Middle East allies and the failed shuttle diplomacy of US Secretary of State Antony Blinken. Since then, Washington has refused to join calls for a ceasefire in Gaza, and directly fueled further violence in the Middle East by launching strikes against the Houthis in Yemen.

Numerous pundits have told Sputnik that there are obvious signs that the US can no longer dictate to Middle Eastern players what to do, and even Israel has been disinclined to follow Team Biden’s orders. Meanwhile, US-led efforts to isolate Russia with respect to the Middle East have failed spectacularly. Russia’s President Vladimir Putin’s highly successful Mideast tour in December 2023 to meet with Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, president of the UAE and ruler of Abu Dhabi, and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud sent a strong message to the world. The West’s botched bid to smear Russia was underscored by international observers, as they looked upon the pomp and ceremony with which the Russian leader was welcomed in both the UAE and Saudi Arabia – longstanding US allies. The Gaza crisis, pundits noted, threw into focus the erosion of Washington’s power in the region.

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Dangerous.

Biden Looks To Prevent Future President From Ending Ukraine War

Soon on the heels of President Biden last week signing into law a $61 billion aid package for Ukraine’s defense, President Volodymyr Zelensky on Sunday indicated that he’s working with Washington on a bilateral security agreement which would last ten years. “We are already working on a specific text,” Zelensky said in his nightly video address. “Our goal is to make this agreement the strongest of all.” “We are discussing the specific foundations of our security and cooperation. We are also working on fixing specific levels of support for this year and the next 10 years.” He indicated it will likely include agreements on long-term support centering on military hardware and joint arms production, as well as continuing reconstruction aid. “The agreement should be truly exemplary and reflect the strength of American leadership,” Zelensky added.

But ultimately a key purpose in locking such a long-term deal in would be to keep it immune from potential interference by a future Trump administration. Below is what The Wall Street Journal spelled out last year: “The goal is to make sure Ukraine will be strong enough in the future to deter Russia from attacking it again. More immediately, Ukraine’s Western allies hope to discourage the Kremlin from thinking it can wait out the Biden administration for a potentially more sympathetic successor in the White House. Western officials are looking for ways to lock in pledges of support and limit future governments’ abilities to backtrack, amid fears in European capitals that Donald Trump, if he recaptures the White House, would seek to scale back aid. Trump has a wide lead in early polling in the Republican presidential primary field, but soundly lost the 2020 election to President Biden and has been indicted in four criminal cases in state and federal courts.”

We and others have previously underscored that NATO and G7 countries are desperately trying to “Trump-proof” future aid to Ukraine and the effort to counter Russia. As for its first new weapons package in the wake of the $61 billion being authorized, the Biden administration has announced new arms packages totaling $7 billion. The US has vowed to rush the weapons to Kiev, given that by all indicators its forces are not doing well on the frontlines. “We are still waiting for the supplies promised to Ukraine – we expect exactly the volume and content of supplies that can change the situation on the battlefield in the interests of Ukraine,” Zelensky had said over the weekend. “And it is important that every agreement we have reached is implemented – everything that will yield practical results on the battlefield and boost the morale of everyone on the frontline. In a conversation with Mr. Jeffries, I emphasized the need for Patriot systems, they are needed as soon as possible.”

But all of this means the war will be prolonged, and this puts negotiations much further away on the horizon, despite what are now daily acknowledgements of Ukraine forces being beaten back. Currently the governments of Greece and Spain are being pressured by EU and NATO leadership to hand over what few Patriot systems they possess to Kiev. The rationale is that they don’t need them as urgently as Ukraine does.

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“..This circular reasoning is already incredibly creative, but the actual evidence used to propel this ball through the machine is even wackier..”:”

Alvin Bragg and The Art of Not Taking Law Too Seriously (Turley)

Rube Goldberg, the inventor of bizarre machines that performed simple tasks through dozens of mechanical steps, was once asked about the essence of creating such fantastic, illogical machines. He replied “An inventor is simply a fellow who doesn’t take his education too seriously.” After the first week of testimony, the trial of Donald Trump is increasingly looking like a mad prosecution machine by lawyers who don’t take law too seriously. I have long been a critic of the Bragg indictment as legally incomprehensible. However, I must confess that after a week of testimony, some of us have developed a weird fascination with the utter madness of the scene unfolding in Manhattan. It was not until the second week of proceedings that Bragg even revealed part of his theory of criminality. For months, even liberal legal analysts have expressed dismay that Bragg’s indictment had not clearly stated what specific crime that Trump sought to conceal by allegedly misrepresenting payments to former adult film actress Stormy Daniels.

The premise of the prosecution always had that Rube Goldberg feel. It was so implausible as to be impossible. After all, the base charge is a simple misdemeanor under a New York law against falsifying business records. Trump paid Cohen hundreds of thousands of dollars in legal fees and costs, including $130,000 for a nondisclosure agreement with Daniels. Bragg is vague as to what should have been noted on the ledgers for the payments. It is not even clear if Trump knew of this expense’s designation as a legal cost. However, it really did not matter, because the misdemeanor has been as dead as Dillinger for years. The dead misdemeanor was shocked back into life by claiming that it was committed to conceal another crime. Under New York’s penal law, section 175.10, it can be a felony if the “intent to defraud includes an intent to commit another crime or to aid or conceal the commission thereof.”

For months, Bragg has suggested that the “other crime” was the violation of federal election laws, suggesting that the payment was really a campaign contribution Trump made to himself that was not properly recorded. The problem is that the Justice Department investigated that crime already and decided that it was not a viable criminal claim. It did not even seek a civil fine. Bragg’s predecessor and Bragg himself rejected the theory behind this prosecution. But then a pressure campaign led Bragg to green-light a prosecution roughly eight years after the 2016 campaign. In the trial, Bragg added a type of frying pan flip to his Rube Goldberg contraption by arguing that Trump may have been trying to hide his violation of another dead misdemeanor under yet another New York election law prohibiting “conspir[ing] to promote or prevent the election of any person to a public office by unlawful means.”

In other words, Trump was conspiring to try to win his own election. This even though the notations were made after he had won the election, and even though Trump was running for a federal, not a state office. So again, what is the unlawful means? The machine then flips you back to the beginning — seeking “to influence the election.” There are still the federal election violations, but that theory was rejected after an investigation. And if it were a real crime, it would be brought by federal, not state prosecutors. There are also the misdemeanor falsifications of business records under section 175.05. So Bragg would use one dead misdemeanor to trigger a second dead misdemeanor to create a felony on the simple notations used to describe payments for a completely legal nondisclosure agreement.

This circular reasoning is already incredibly creative, but the actual evidence used to propel this ball through the machine is even wackier. Bragg decided to start with a witness to discuss an affair that is not part of the indictment. David Pecker, former publisher of the National Enquirer tabloid, had supposedly been paid to kill a story of a Trump affair with a different woman, Karen McDougal, a former Playboy model. Pecker proceeded to make the prosecution case even more convoluted. On cross examination, Pecker admitted that Trump told him that he knew nothing about any reimbursement to Cohen for any hush money, that he had killed or raised such stories with Trump for decades before he ever announced for president and that he had also killed stories for other celebrities and politicians, including Arnold Schwarzenegger, Tiger Woods, Rahm Emanuel and Mark Wahlberg.

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“..the Middle East paradigm interlinks directly with the Ukraine paradigm..”

The Interlocking of Strategic Paradigms (Alastair Crooke)

Theodore Postol, Professor of Science, Technology and National Security Policy at MIT, has provided a forensic analysis of the videos and evidence emerging from Iran’s 13th April swarm drone and missile ‘demonstation’ attack into Israel: A ‘message’, rather than an ‘assault’. The leading Israeli daily, Yediot Ahoronot, has estimated the cost of attempting to down this Iranian flotilla at between $2-3 billion dollars. The implications of this single number are substantial. Professor Postol writes: “This indicates that the cost of defending against waves of attacks of this type is very likely to be unsustainable against an adequately armed and determined adversary”. “The videos show an extremely important fact: All of the targets, whether drones or not, are shot down by air-to-air missiles”, [fired from mostly U.S. aircraft. Some 154 aircraft reportedly were aloft at the time] likely firing AIM-9x Sidewinder air to air missiles. The cost of a single Sidewinder air-to-air missile is about $500,000”.

Furthermore: “The fact that a very large number of unengaged ballistic missiles could be seen glowing as they reenter the atmosphere to lower altitudes [an indication of hyper-speed], indicates that whatever the effects of [Israel’s] David’s Sling and the Arrow missile defenses, they were not especially effective. Thus, the evidence at this point shows that essentially all or most of the arriving long-range ballistic missiles were not intercepted by any of the Israeli air and missile-defense systems”. Postel adds, “I have analyzed the situation, and have concluded that commercially available optical and computational technology is more than capable of being adapted to a cruise missile guidance system to give it very high precision homing capability … it is my conclusion that the Iranians have already developed precision guided cruise missiles and drones”.

“The implications of this are clear. The cost of shooting down cruise missiles and drones will be very high and might well be unsustainable unless extremely inexpensive and effective anti-air systems can be implemented. At this time, no one has demonstrated a cost-effective defense system that can intercept ballistic missiles with any reliability”. Just to be clear, Postol is saying that neither the U.S. nor Israel has more than a partial defence to a potential attack of this nature – especially as Iran has dispersed and buried its ballistic missile silos across the entire terrain of Iran under the control of autonomous units which are capable of continuing a war, even were central command and communications to be completely lost.

This amounts to paradigm change – clearly for Israel, for one. The huge physical expenditure on air defence ordinance – 2-3 billion dollars worth – will not be repeated willy-nilly by the U.S. Netanyahu will not easily persuade the U.S. to engage with Israel in any joint venture against Iran, given these unsustainable air-defence costs. But also, as a second important implication, these Air Defence assets are not just expensive in dollar terms, they simply are not there: i.e. the store cupboard is near empty! And the U.S. lacks the manufacturing capacity to replace these not particularly effective, high cost platforms speedily. ‘Yes, Ukraine’ … the Middle East paradigm interlinks directly with the Ukraine paradigm where Russia has succeeded in destroying so much of the western supplied, air-defence capabilities in Ukraine, giving Russia near complete air dominance over the skies.

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“..to have a company lawyer approve his social media posts..”

Supreme Court Rejects Elon Musk’s “Free Speech” Appeal In SEC Case (ZH)

Another day, another chapter in the Elon Musk vs. SEC saga. The US Supreme Court declined to hear Elon Musk’s appeal regarding his ongoing “Twitter sitter” case, Bloomberg reported on Monday, keeping Musk’s agreement with the SEC to have a company lawyer approve his social media posts in place. Musk, without success, had argued that the 2018 agreement infringed upon his constitutional right to free speech. The decision marks the latest development in Musk’s lengthy, ongoing dispute with the SEC, which started after he tweeted in August 2018 that he had “funding secured” for a potential $80 billion take-private deal for Tesla. As a result, Tesla stock rocketed higher the day of. Following Musk’s tweet, the SEC filed a lawsuit alleging shareholder deception and, shortly after, Musk settled with the SEC, agreeing to step down as Tesla chairman and pay a $20 million fine.

In 2021, Musk reopened the dispute by conducting a Twitter poll regarding selling 10% of his stock. This prompted the SEC to issue subpoenas to Musk and Tesla. Musk then sought to annul his pre-screening agreement, but his arguments were dismissed by a federal appeals court last year. Musk’s lawyers had argued to the Supreme Court that the agreement was a “quintessential prior restraint that the law forbids.” They said in their appeal: “The pre-approval provision at issue continues to cast an unconstitutional chill over Mr. Musk’s speech whenever he considers making public communications.” In its brief, the SEC responded: “This court has consistently held that, in resolving litigation, parties may choose to waive even fundamental constitutional rights.”

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Time warp: “..the story appeared to be “Russian disinformation.”

Hunter Biden’s Lawyers Threaten Fox News (RT)

Lawyers representing Hunter Biden have accused Fox News of a “conspiracy to defame” the US president’s son, demanding that the media outlet take down nude images of their client and retract reports suggesting that the Biden family engaged in an overseas bribery operation. Attorneys claimed that Fox had unlawfully published “hacked” photos of Biden and knowingly reported “debunked” bribery allegations. “Fox knows that these private and confidential images were hacked, stolen, and/or manipulated digital materials,” the lawyers said in a letter to the cable news network. CNN obtained a copy of the letter, which indicated that President Joe Biden’s son “anticipates” suing Fox. The lawyers insisted that Fox issue corrections and on-air retractions, including statements by its top hosts admitting that “they have been sharing a debunked allegation from a source who has been federally indicted.”

Media reports about the Biden family’s alleged influence-peddling scheme stemmed from files on a laptop computer that Hunter Biden left behind at a Delaware computer repair shop. He forfeited ownership of the computer and its contents when he failed to pay his bill and pick up his laptop. When the New York Post reported on the alleged Biden family scandal in October 2020, just weeks before the presidential election, former US intelligence officials falsely claimed that the story appeared to be “Russian disinformation.” Social media outlets censored the bombshell laptop report. Several of the same major media outlets that dismissed the story as disinformation later verified key documents on the laptop – long after Joe Biden had been elected. Fox aired a six-part mock trial of Hunter Biden on its Fox Nation streaming platform in October 2022. The report included the bribery allegations, as well as photos showing the president’s son in the nude or engaged in sexual acts.

Hunter Biden’s lawyers demanded that the mock trial be removed from all streaming services. They argued that Fox also published articles based on statements from FBI informant Alexander Smirnov, who was indicted earlier this year for allegedly making false claims that the owner of Ukrainian energy company Burisma paid bribes to the Bidens. “Then, in a brazen show of no remorse, rather than walk back the story and correct the record, Fox double-downed on the debunked bribery allegation and used Smirnov’s indictment to claim this is an intimidation tactic aimed at silencing whistleblowers, to blame the FBI for its credulity, and to suggest an even deeper conspiracy,” Hunter Biden’s lawyers said in the letter. However, US House lawmakers continue to investigate alleged Biden family corruption, citing bank records and other evidence.

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“..a writer who writes about big ideas,” claiming that his books have been “banned by the Biden administration” in the US. “You cannot buy them on Amazon..”

Tucker Carlson Interviews Conservative Russian Philosopher Aleksandr Dugin (RT)

American journalist Tucker Carlson has released a 20-minute interview with high-profile Russian philosopher and political commentator Aleksandr Dugin. The conversation was published on Carlson’s YouTube channel on Monday. Western media have described Dugin as “Putin’s brain” due to his supposed influence on President Vladimir Putin and the Russian elite. A fervent critic of the West and a foreign policy hawk, Dugin passionately supports Russia’s military operation in Ukraine and has stated that an independent Ukrainian state “should not exist.” In 2022, his daughter Darya was killed in a car bombing, which the Russian authorities said had been orchestrated by Ukrainian agents. Several US media outlets subsequently cited unnamed US intelligence officials as saying that Washington believes that the Ukrainian authorities were indeed involved in the assassination.

Carlson introduced Dugin as “a writer who writes about big ideas,” claiming that his books have been “banned by the Biden administration” in the US. “You cannot buy them on Amazon,” he said. During the conversation with Carlson, Dugin argued that liberal ideology, which became de facto uncontested in the West since the fall of the Soviet Union, is leading to the demise of the concept of families. “Family is [being] destroyed in favor of this individualism,” he said, adding that the natural progression of liberalism will lead to “abandoned human identity.” “Next phase: new liberalism. Now it is not about the rule of a majority, but it is about the rule of minorities. It is not about individual freedom, but it is about woke-ism,” Dugin said. “It is not democracy. It is totalitarianism.”

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“When Barack Obama warned America to not underestimate Joe Biden’s ability to fuck things up, was that some kind of joke?”

Pep Talk on a Dark Day (Kunstler)

You realize, don’t you, that what’s going on in our country is the collapse not just of an empire, or an economy, but a comprehensive paradigm of human progress. The hallmark of post-war life in Western Civ was supposed to be a return to sanity after the mid-twentieth century fugue of mass psychotic violence. The wish for just and rational order was not entirely pretense. But that was then. Now that we are going medieval on ourselves, the not-so-ironic result will be our literally going medieval, sinking back into a pre-modern existence of darkness, superstition, and penury, grubbing for a mere subsistence in the shadow of scuffling hobgoblins, our achievements lost and forgotten.

What’s most appalling is that our governing apparatus is visibly willing that to happen. When Barack Obama warned America to not underestimate Joe Biden’s ability to fuck things up, was that some kind of joke? After all, it was Mr. Obama and his fellow blobsters — the cabal of Intel spooks, covert Marxist bureaucrats, lawfare ninjas, globalist megalomaniacs, post-liberal think tankers, weapons grifters, degenerate billionaires, and assorted mentally-ill camp followers — who inflicted Joe Biden on the body politic. And then ran him on the country like some demon algorithm designed to wreck the USA as fast as possible.

The source of anguish in all that is the struggle to understand why they would want that to happen. What debauched sense of history would drive anyone to such lunatic desperation? It’s a cliché now to say that the Democratic Party has turned its traditional moral scaffold upside down and inside out. It acts against the kitchen table interests of the working and middle classes. It’s against civil liberties. It demands mental obedience to patently insane policy. It’s avid for war, no matter how cruelly pointless. It’s deliberately stirring up racial hatred. It despises personal privacy. It feeds a rogue bureaucracy that has become a veritable Moloch, an all-devouring malevolent deity. And now, rather suddenly, it aligns itself with a faction that seeks to exterminate the Jews.

And how did the opposition to that epic divergence into bad faith turn so flabby? How did the Republican Party roll over and wheeze so feebly while the FBI ran amok swatting grandmothers in dawn raids, and the US attorney general made justice a whore, and a Republican Congress allowed the Frankenstein agency of Homeland Security to flood the country with its enemies and give them gobs of operational cash? If Mr. Trump was unappetizing to them as a leader, why were they unable to produce an alternative figure of standing and stature at least equally resolute? They look like traitors and cowards.

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“..Any criminal investigation against Netanyahu also implicates President Biden..”

US Working To Prevent ICC Arrest Warrant for Netanyahu (Antiwar)

The US and Israel are working together to prevent the International Criminal Court from issuing an arrest warrant for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and other high-level Israeli officials, Israeli media has reported. Haaretz reported that the Israeli government is working under the assumption that arrest warrants for Netanyahu, Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, and IDF Chief-of-Staff Herzi Halevi could be issued as soon as this week. The report said that the US is already engaged in an effort to block the warrants. Walla reported that Netanyahu is “under unusual stress” over the potential warrants and is leading a “nonstop push over the telephone” to prevent them with a focus on contact with the Biden administration.

In a statement on Friday, Netanyahu said an arrest warrant wouldn’t stop Israel’s mass slaughter of Palestinians in Gaza. “Under my leadership, Israel will never accept any attempt by the International Criminal Court in the Hague to undermine its basic right to defend itself,” he said. “While decisions made by the court in the Hague will not affect Israel’s actions, they will set a dangerous precedent that threatens soldiers and public figures.” Neither the US nor Israel are parties to the ICC, and the US has a contentious history with the court. In 2002, then-President George W. Bush signed a bill into law that would authorize the use of force to free any US service members or government officials brought to the ICC, which is based in the Hauge.

The controversial law, known as the American Service-Members’ Protection Act, authorizes the US to use “all means necessary and appropriate to bring about the release of any US or allied personnel being detained or imprisoned by, on behalf of, or at the request of the” ICC, and is nicknamed the Hague Invasion Act. The Trump administration sanctioned ICC officials for their investigation into alleged US war crimes in Afghanistan. The Biden administration reversed the sanctions but continued to put pressure on the court, which worked since the ICC announced it would “deprioritize” its investigation of US forces in Afghanistan.

After Russia invaded Ukraine in 2022, the Biden administration changed its attitude toward the court and backed its arrest warrant for Russian President Vladimir Putin, which was issued in 2023. But now that Israel is being targeted, the US will likely resort back to its pressure tactics. Any criminal investigation against Netanyahu also implicates President Biden since he has provided so much support for the Israeli campaign in Gaza. Israel is also facing pressure from the International Court of Justice (ICJ), another Hague-based court that rules it’s “plausible” Israel is carrying out genocide in Gaza, a ruling the US has rejected. The main difference between the two courts is that the ICC prosecutes individuals while the ICJ deals with disputes between countries.

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“..most of the indictments either had no prior precedent in criminal law or will likely never be used again, at least against anyone left-wing..”

The Travesties of the Trump Trials (Victor Davis Hanson)

Do not believe the White House/mainstream media-concocted narrative that the four criminal court cases—prosecuted by Alvin Bragg, Letitia James, Jack Smith, and Fani Willis—were not in part coordinated, synchronized, and timed to reach their courtroom psychodramatic finales right during the 2024 campaign season. These local, state, and federal Lilliputian agendas were designed to tie down, gag, confine, bankrupt, and destroy Trump psychologically and physically. They are the final lawfare denouement to years of extra-legal efforts to emasculate him. Indeed, the nation is by now worn out by these serial assaults on constitutional norms: the Hillary-funded Steele dossier subterfuge; the pre-election Russian laptop disinformation campaign; the two impeachments without special counsel reports; the impeachment Senate trial of a private citizen; the effort to remove Trump’s name from state ballots; the ongoing attempt to emasculate the Electoral College; or the radical opportune changes in state election laws to ensure massive mail-in balloting.

Recently, Andrew McCarthy has reviewed in depth this coordination between White House personnel and prosecutors, long known and long denied by the left. Biden, for example, had complained to aides about Attorney General Merrick Garland’s tardiness in getting special federal prosecutor Smith appointed—and thus apparently ensuring Trump was convicted before the election. Nathan Wade, Fani Willis’s now-fired paramour prosecutor, visited and consulted with the White House counsel’s office when he was acting supposedly as a purely local county prosecutor. The January 6th left-wing-dominated congressional committee consulted with the Biden administration in sending forth its criminal referrals about Trump’s purported role in the protests. And to handle his pseudo-indictment against Trump, Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg hired Biden Justice Department official Vincent Colangeio.

Two, the prosecutors’ delayed criminal indictments and E. Jean Carroll’s civil suit were predicated only on Donald Trump running for reelection. After his 2020 defeat, the loss of the two Republican senate seats in Georgia, and the January 6 demonstrations/riot, Trump was written off by pundits as politically toxic. Then his historic comeback in the subsequent year terrified the left. The reboot prompted the subsequent indictments and suits years after the purported crimes. It was left unsaid that had Trump not been a conservative Republican and leading presidential candidate, he would have never been indicted. Three, most of the indictments either had no prior precedent in criminal law or will likely never be used again, at least against anyone left-wing. Moreover, many of the writs relied on manipulation of statutes of limitations.

Neither Bragg nor any other local prosecutor had previously transformed a supposedly local affidavit misdemeanor into a supposed federal campaign finance violation, a gambit so preposterous that it had been passed on by federal attorneys. Letitia James was the first New York Attorney General to indict a state resident for the supposed crime of overvaluing real estate to obtain a loan, which was paid back timely and in full, to the profit of lending institutions. No bank, after auditing Trump’s assets and viability to pay back loans, was unhappy to loan to him. But all were quite happy to profit from the hefty interest—and would likely be happy to loan to him again. James sought to make Trump a criminal without ever finding a crime, much less a victim. Nor, until the checkered and unethical career of Fani Willis, had any local prosecutor ever indicted an ex-president for a supposedly improper phone call questioning whether all the state’s votes had been fully counted.

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Paul Craig Roberts likes Eva’s long blond hair.

The Shieldmaiden Takes the Field Against The Destroyers of the West (PCR)

A young Dutch female lawyer has undertaken the task of encouraging white Europeans to take a stand against the replacement of countries consisting of ethnic nationalities, such as Germans, English, French, Italians, Dutch, Spanish, Hungarians, with towers of babel. In our world today, as in George Orwell’s novel 1984, words are turned upside down and have the opposite of their meaning. Diversity now means “sameness” with no country’s population corresponding to the ethnicity of its name. Destroying the diversity afforded by white ethnic nations is the goal of the EU tyrants and “President” Biden who recently stated, as Tucker Carlson reported, that getting rid of white America was a good thing.

The young woman taking on the Shieldmaiden’s role is Eva Vlaardingerbroek. She states the obvious fact that Europeans must take a stand against the huge demographic shift brought by mass migration orchestrated by their leaders or risk becoming a minority in their home countries. This is a fact, but the traitors orchestrating our erasure have made it racist to say so. The question before us is whether she will be prosecuted for a hate crime. Throughout the Western world it has become dicey for a white person to defend white people, white history, and white accomplishments. As law is already being used against people and organizations who are white, such as President Trump and VDare in New York and President Trump in Fulton County, Georgia, once whites are a minority, the hatred and demonization that has been created of whites will be used to obliterate them. In The Camp of the Saints the first law passed by the new regime prohibits marriage between white people. White skin is bred out of existence. Perhaps a few will be kept in cages in zoos as an example of white evil.

When asked by Remix News at CPAC Hungary 2024 how European ethnicities should deal with accusations of racism for resisting demographic replacement in their home countries, Eva Vlaardingerbroek answered that response is impossible because our enemies have defined defense of Western civilization as racism. “So you have to pick a side. Of course, you’re going to be attacked if you say, ‘Hey, this continent, Europe, has been predominantly White for the entirety of its history, and now suddenly within one generation, a few bureaucrats have decided against the will of the people that we should suddenly be a minority,’” she said. Actually, European whites are already a minority in their own countries–and not only in their main cities–because half of them are indoctrinated against themselves and are aligned with the immigrant-invaders against their own kind. This 12 minute speech by a clear-thinking young Dutch woman says it all:

The question before us is why did leaders of the Western nations decide to destroy ethnic diverse nationality in Europe and the West by turning all Western countries into towers of babel? This was the question raised by the last Briton, Enoch Powell, in 1968. In his speech he warned that the British nation was being replaced and said that the clash of hostile cultures within a country would result in rivers of blood. Of course, Powell had to be put down, and he was. But he has proven to be right. The rivers of blood are not the result of armed conflict between race-based armies. Rivers of blood are forming from small streams from the racial murder of white people, from gang rapes of white women, and the sharp rise in crime that is dissolving British society. The war against white people is being fought by legal means. The immigrant-invaders are obtaining legal power over the white ethnic citizens.

In California the Democrats are content with illegal immigrants being police officers. A bill has been introduced in Congress to fill our military ranks with them. Immigrant-invaders have many allies in the universities, school systems, lawyers, police, and legislators. Whites, not immigrant-invaders, have limits put on their speech and protest rights. Immigrant-invaders have achieved the protection that Jews have against “hate speech,” “hate thoughts,” “hate crimes.” But white gentiles have no such protections. Police everywhere delight in the expansion of their reach as it elevates their power. In the UK white police are quick to grab a fellow white and charge him with a “hate crime” against an immigrant-invader. In years past I reported from the Swedish media that Swedish women raped by immigrant-invaders fear to report the rape as they could be charged with racism. Swedish men fear to stop a rape as Swedish authorities might designate the rescue of the Swedish woman as a hate crime. These are worst than Powell’s rivers of blood, because the white population cannot fight back.

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Kookaburra

 

 

Impossible

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Mar 172024
 


Vincent van Gogh Sprig of Flowering Almond in a Glass 1888

 

Out of Africa… Macron’s Belligerence Towards Russia (SCF)
Europe Panics as Trump Rises from the Political Grave (Luongo)
The Ever Widening War (Paul Craig Roberts)
Will BRICS Launch A New World In 2024? (Pepe Escobar)
Zelensky’s Draft Leaving Ukrainian Villages Without Men – WaPo (RT)
Ukraine Outcome Will Weaken US – Envoy (RT)
Russia Created ‘New Global Majority’ – Presidential Hopeful (RT)
Issue of Crimea’s Affiliation Resolved Forever – Lavrov (TASS)
Israel Is Starving Gaza (Sahiounie)
EU ‘Media Freedom’ Law Not What You Think It Is (Marsden)
Boeing Tells Pilots To Check Seats After Latam Plane Incident (BBC)
Peter Navarro Asks Supreme Court to Avoid Reporting to Prison (ET)
Don Lemon Made Crazy Demands Before Elon Musk Canned Him (NYP)
Musk Building Huge Spy Satellite Network – Reuters (RT)
Where Donald Trump’s Four Criminal Trials Stand After More Delays (BBC)

 

 

Hope is the thing with feathers that perches in the soul
—and sings the tunes without the words
—and never stops at all.

– Emily Dickinson

 

 

Voting machines

Ware County
https://twitter.com/i/status/1768795715034329444

 

 

 

 

Tucker Pence

 

 

Putin ID

 

 

 

 

Sciutto

 

 

 

 

“Paris has had to recall unwanted ambassadors, shut down military bases, and withdraw thousands of troops. Where to put these French troops? In Ukraine, pitted against Russia?”

“..He has an inordinate ego that has been bruised, his delusions have been shattered, he is an impotent vassal of American imperialism, and he is desperate for his sordid political survival.”

“Kicked out of Africa… and now trying to start World War Three in Europe. How pathetic and criminal.”

Out of Africa… Macron’s Belligerence Towards Russia (SCF)

Russian President Vladimir Putin was spot-on this week in his observation about why France’s Emmanuel Macron is strutting around and mouthing off about war in Ukraine. Putin remarked in an interview that Macron’s wanton warmongering over Ukraine was borne out of resentment due to the spectacular loss of France’s standing in Africa. One after another, France’s former colonial countries have told Paris in no uncertain terms to get out of their internal affairs. Since 2020 and the coup in Mali, there has been immense political upheaval on the continent, particularly in West and Central Africa, stretching from the vast Sahel region down to the equator. At least seven nations have undergone coups or government changes against Francophone rulers. They include Mali, Burkina Faso, Chad, Niger, Central African Republic, Gabon, and Guinea. The continent-wide changes have come as a political earthquake to France. The new African governments have adamantly rejected old-style French patronage and have asserted a newfound national independence.

Paris has had to recall unwanted ambassadors, shut down military bases, and withdraw thousands of troops. Where to put these French troops? In Ukraine, pitted against Russia? Popular sentiment across Africa is exasperated with and repudiating “Francafrique” corruption. Meanwhile, with an unmistakable end-of-era sense, French media have lamented “France’s shrinking footprint in Africa.” A former diplomat summed up the momentous geopolitical shift thus: “The deep trend confirms itself. Our military presence is no longer accepted. We need to totally rethink our relationship with Africa. We have been kicked out of Africa. We need to depart from other countries before we are told to.” Africa analysts are now watching two key countries closely. They are Senegal and Ivory Coast. Both are currently governed by pro-France presidents but the rising anti-French political tide is putting those incumbents at risk of either a coup or electoral ouster.

The blow to the French political elite cannot be overstated. The loss of status in its former colonies is conflating multiple crises tantamount to the traumatic loss of Algeria back in the early 1960s. Financially, for decades after handing over nominal independence to African nations, Paris continued to exploit these countries through control of currencies and their prodigious natural resources. Most of France’s electricity, for example, is generated from uranium ore mined in Africa – and obtained like most other African resources for a pittance. The system of neocolonial suzerainty was typically sustained by France bribing local corrupt regimes to do its bidding and offering security guarantees from the continuance of French military bases. Not for nothing did Paris think of itself as the African Gendarme.

One of the extraordinary curiosities of this neocolonial arrangement was that African nations were compelled to deposit their gold treasuries in France’s central bank. Any African nation trying to resist the neocolonial vassalage was liable to be attacked militarily through counter-coups, or its nationalist leaders were assassinated like Thomas Sankara in 1987, who was known as “Africa’s Che Guevara”. Nevertheless, the halcyon days of France’s dominance over its former colonies are over. African nations are discovering a new sense of independence and purpose, as well as solidarity to help each other fend off pressure from France to reinstate the status quo ante. The collapse of France’s status in Africa is perceived by the French establishment as a grievous loss in presumed global power.

No French politician can feel more aggrieved than President Emmanuel Macron. Macron imagines himself to be on a mission to restore “France’s greatness”. He seems to harbor fantasies of also leading the rest of Europe under the tutelage of Paris. It was Macron who proclaimed one of his grand objectives as achieving a reset in Franco-African relations, one which would renew continental respect for Paris and promote French strategic interests. How embarrassing for Macron that a whole spate of African nations are asserting that they no longer want to have anything to do with the old colonial power. Chagrin indeed.

[..] The French president declared with hysteria that: “If Russia wins this war [in Ukraine], Europe’s credibility will be reduced to zero.” Macron’s recklessness is criminal. He is talking up war with Russia based on sheer lies and vanity. When he says Europe’s credibility will be reduced to zero what he really means is that his credibility and that of NATO will be reduced to zero when Russia defeats the NATO-backed NeoNazi regime in Kiev. Macron is a most dangerous kind of politician. He has an inordinate ego that has been bruised, his delusions have been shattered, he is an impotent vassal of American imperialism, and he is desperate for his sordid political survival. The French people are all too well aware of the charlatan that poses like a Louis XIV Sun King in Elysée Palace basking in his presumed vainglory. How ironic. Kicked out of Africa… and now trying to start World War Three in Europe. How pathetic and criminal.

Brigitte
https://twitter.com/i/status/1768916052061405573

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“..the way for Russia to beat the west in Ukraine was to continue letting them think they had a chance to win..”

Europe Panics as Trump Rises from the Political Grave (Luongo)

Remember, that in 2022-23 when it looked like the US was hellbent on going forward in Ukraine, European leaders like Macron and others were more circumspect. They wanted to virtue signal about the dangers of Ukraine escalating. They got to look like the moderates in the war room, while still sending billions in aid and weapons, arm-twisting everyone into compliance. The real mask-off event for Europe’s real position on this war was their threatening Hungary’s Viktor Orban with complete economic devastation if he didn’t allow their $50 billion aid package to go through the European Council. Now that all of Nuland’s military plans have failed, Ukraine’s army has been destroyed for the third time, and all of their attempts to undermine the US legally and economically (Powell must Pivot!) have fizzled, Europe finds itself in the blind panic.

Because as poll after poll suggests, Trump will return to the White House in January and has plans to end the killing and the other shenanigans in Ukraine quickly. Orban is acting as Trump’s voice of reason to both Eastern Europe as well as Russia itself.: Orban, who spoke with Trump at the Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida on Friday, did not explain how exactly the American would do that, but said that cutting the flow of US aid was a crucial part of the plan. ”If the US will not provide the money, Europeans on their own will not be able to finance this war, and then the war will end,” Orban said in an interview with M1 broadcaster on Sunday. During his presidency, Trump had shown himself to be “a man of peace,” the Hungarian leader claimed.

That stance puts him in alignment with Hungary, unlike the administration of US President Joe Biden and many members of the EU, he added. ”The American Democratic government and the leadership of the EU, as well as the leadership of the largest EU member states are pro-war governments. Donald Trump is pro-peace, Hungary is pro-peace. At the bottom of everything lies this difference,” Orban declared. Trump’s many things, but he is no dummy when it comes to money. Cut the flow of funds and you end the war. The wildcard is the seizure of Russia’s foreign exchange assets which would be the dumbest thing all these people could do. This is why they won’t shut up about it.

For his part, Putin is as done with the current regime in the EU as he is with the Biden junta in the US. He’s tried to reason with them, and all we hear is the most over-the-top vitriol from the usual suspects, like Macron. Putin understands now that the only diplomacy will occur is at the point of his gun or not at all. And if Ukraine is going to escalate on behalf of Europe to attack critical infrastructure inside Russia he will take the gloves completely off, rather than just carpet bomb the line of contact. I told you last year that no matter what the West thinks there will be “No Truce With the Heartland.” And the way for Russia to beat the west in Ukraine was to continue letting them think they had a chance to win by leaving just enough hope to have the West keep funneling billions into a slaughterhouse.

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“In any case, in the next year I will have to send some of my people to Odessa..”

The Ever Widening War (Paul Craig Roberts)

I have no idea why French President Macron is talking so aggressively about war with Russia, saying he will send French soldiers to Odessa and telling Russia’s President Putin “We are a nuclear power and We are ready,” or who might have put him up to taking such an aggressive position. I have been writing for two years that Putin needs to end the conflict as the war continues to widen and will spin out of control. The way Putin has fought this conflict is a strategic blunder of the worst kind. Russia should have seized, Kharkiv, Odessa, and Kiev immediately and left the Ukrainian army trapped in the east cut off from supplies. If President Macron does put French soldiers in Odessa, Putin cannot complete the obvious military task in Ukraine without going to war with NATO. Russia has gained absolutely nothing by the pointless, endless prolongation of the conflict.

The war has widened, and now European leaders are talking about preparing for war with Russia. Two more countries, Sweden and Finland, have joined NATO, so Ukraine was kept out at the cost of two other additions. “The French authorities are considering sending their troops to Ukraine from 2023, Le Monde newspaper reported, citing sources. “According to them, the issue of sending the French military to Ukraine was discussed in “the strictest secrecy” at the Security Council at the Elysee Palace on June 12, 2023. Shortly before that, the French president spoke in favor of Ukraine’s early entry into NATO.

“Le Monde writes that on the eve of the second anniversary of the full-scale invasion, on February 21, 2024, Macron, after the ceremony of transferring the ashes of the French Resistance movement member Misak Manushyan to the Pantheon, raised the topic of Ukraine in a conversation with those who congratulated him on his “beautiful speech”. “In any case, in the next year I will have to send some of my people to Odessa,” Macron said, according to the publication. “French Army Chief of Staff General Pierre Schill told the publication that Macron’s words are “primarily a political and strategic message” to Russia about its readiness for such steps. The task of the military in this situation is “to prepare as many options as possible to help the president make political and military decisions.”

“Emmanuel Macron said on February 26, speaking after a conference of leaders of 20 European countries, that he does not rule out sending NATO troops to Ukraine. Many Western countries, including Germany and the United States, opposed it. The Kremlin responded that the appearance of NATO troops in Ukraine would lead to a direct conflict with Russia. “The French president clarified on March 4 that the authorities are not considering sending French troops to Ukraine, but are “starting discussions and thinking about everything that can be done to support Ukraine” on its territory. Macron later added that ” not ruling something out does not mean doing it.” “At a meeting with leaders of French political parties on March 7, Macron said that there should be no restrictions on supporting Ukraine. Deputy Head of the Russian Security Council Dmitry Medvedev said in response that ” then Russia no longer has any red lines in relation to France.”

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“..creating a consensus-based list out of the dozens of nations that are literally itching to join the club..”

Will BRICS Launch A New World In 2024? (Pepe Escobar)

Across the Global South, countries are lining up to join the multipolar BRICS and the Hegemon-free future it promises. The onslaught of interest has become an unavoidable theme of discussion during this crucial year of the Russian presidency of what, for the moment, is BRICS-10. Indonesia and Nigeria are among the top tiers of candidates likely to join. The same applies to Pakistan and Vietnam. Mexico is in a very complex bind: how to join without summoning the ire of the Hegemon. And then there’s the new candidacy on a roll: Yemen, which enjoys plenty of support from Russia, China, and Iran. It’s been up to Russia’s top BRICS sherpa, the immensely capable Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov, to clarify what’s ahead. He tells TASS: “We must provide a platform for the countries interested in rapprochement with the BRICS, where they will be able to work practically without feeling left behind and joining this cooperation rhythm. And as to how the further expansion will be decided upon – this should be postponed at least until the leaders convene in Kazan to decide.”

The key decision on BRICS+ expansion will only come out of the Kazan summit next October. Ryabkov stresses that the order of the day is first “to integrate those who have just joined.” This means that “as a ‘ten,’ we work at least as efficiently, or, rather, more efficiently than we did within the initial ‘five.'” Only then will the BRICS-10 “develop the category of partner states,” which, in fact, means creating a consensus-based list out of the dozens of nations that are literally itching to join the club. Ryabkov always makes a point to note, in public and in private, that the twofold increase of BRICS members starting on 1 January 2024 is “an unprecedented event for any international structure.” It isn’t an easy task, Ryabkov says: “Last year, it took an entire year to develop the admission, expansion criteria at the level of top officials. Many reasonable things were developed. And many of the things that were formulated back then got reflected in the list of countries that joined. But it would probably be improper to formalize the requirements. At the end of the day, an admission to the association is a subject of political decision.”

In a private meeting with a few select individuals on the sidelines of the recent multipolar conference in Moscow, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov spoke effusively of BRICS, with particular emphasis on his counterparts Wang Yi of China and S. Jaishankar of India. Lavrov holds great expectations for BRICS-10 this year – at the same time, reminding everyone that this is still a club; it must eventually go deeper in institutional terms, for instance, by appointing a secretariat-general, just like its cousin-style organization, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO). The Russian presidency will have its hands full for the next few months, not only navigating the geopolitical spectrum of current crises but, most of all, geoeconomics. A crucial ministerial meeting in June – only three months away – will have to define a detailed road map all the way to the Kazan summit four months later.

What happens after this week’s Russian presidential elections will also condition BRICS policy. A new Russian government will be sworn in only by early May. It is widely expected that there will be no substantial changes within the Russian Finance Ministry, Central Bank, Foreign Ministry, and among top Kremlin advisers. Continuity will be the norm. And that brings us to the key geoeconomics dossier: the BRICS at the forefront of bypassing the US dollar in international finance. Last week, top Kremlin adviser Yury Ushakov announced that BRICS will work towards setting up an independent payment system based on digital currencies and blockchain. Ushakov specifically emphasized “state-of-the-art tools such as digital technologies and blockchain. The main thing is to make sure it is convenient for governments, common people, and businesses, as well as cost-effective and free of politics.” Ushakov did not mention it explicitly, but a new alternative system already exists. For the moment, it is a closely, carefully guarded project in the form of a detailed white paper that has already been validated academically and also incorporates answers to possible frequently asked questions.

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“..virtually every man of fighting age had been killed, wounded, or gone missing with the remaining few being hunted down by the draft officers..”

Zelensky’s Draft Leaving Ukrainian Villages Without Men – WaPo (RT)

Some Ukrainian villages and small towns are left with hardly any adult men amid aggressive and indiscriminate mobilization tactics by the army recruiters, who are desperate to refill the ranks of the depleted forces, according to a report by the Washington Post. In an article published on Saturday, the outlet detailed the plight of the village of Makov, in the Khmelnitsky region in Western Ukraine, where virtually every man of fighting age had been killed, wounded, or gone missing with the remaining few being hunted down by the draft officers. “It’s just a fact, most of them are gone,” Larisa Bodna, deputy director of the local school, which keeps a database of students whose parents are deployed, told the outlet.

“People are being caught like dogs on the street,” noted another resident, whose husband was forcefully drafted last year, despite a medical condition that was meant to exempt him from the military service. “The whole village was taken this way,” her mother-in-law added. The newspaper noted that the sense of resentment is steadily growing among the civilian population, with the majority feeling that their men have been targeted disproportionately, compared to larger cities, where it is easier to go into hiding. The residents say that even those already serving in the army and youths below the draft age are being stopped and questioned on the streets. Multiple videos of troops forcing men into vehicles that have surfaced online in recent months, sparking rumors of kidnappings and contributing to panic among the locals.

Ukraine announced a general mobilization shortly after the start of the conflict with Russia in February 2022, but thousands managed to flee to the bordering Romania and Moldova. Following the failed counteroffensive in the summer of last year, Kiev was desperate to replenish the ranks, seeking to mobilize up to 500,000 new recruits. In late January, the Ukrainian lawmakers passed the first reading of a revised mobilization bill aimed at increasing the military ranks by lowering the conscription age from 27 to 25 and tightening draft conditions. The Russian military estimated Kiev’s casualties at over 444,000 killed or badly injured, as of the end of February. Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky claimed last month that only 31,000 Ukrainian soldiers had been killed in two years of hostilities with Russia, a figure that even journalists sympathetic to the Ukrainian cause have called implausibly low.

de Graaff
https://twitter.com/i/status/1769051139528364045

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“..Washington is “destroying the vestiges of [its own] former prestige.” “The further we advance on the frontline, the more America will weaken and the rules-based world order will crumble..”

Ukraine Outcome Will Weaken US – Envoy (RT)

Success for Russia in the Ukraine conflict would progressively weaken the US, Moscow’s ambassador in Washington DC has argued. Anatoly Antonov also accused the US and UK of preventing a peaceful resolution of the conflict during its early stages. In an interview with RIA Novosti news agency published on Saturday, Antonov accused the US of playing an “extremely negative” role in Ukraine, calling Washington a “sponsor of terrorism” and a “country that encourages murder and war.” According to the envoy, Washington is “destroying the vestiges of [its own] former prestige.” “The further we advance on the frontline, the more America will weaken and the rules-based world order will crumble,” the Russian diplomat added.

The term ‘rules-based world order ‘ has been widely used by the administration of US President Joe Biden to describe the arrangement in which leading Western powers have for decades had significant leverage over the rest of the world. Critics, including Russia, say the system contravenes international law and is being abused by the West. Antonov also dismissed Western claims that Moscow is unwilling to engage in dialogue on Ukraine. He argued that “everything could have been settled peacefully. However, this did not sit well with the leadership of NATO countries, first of all the US and the UK.” Moscow and Kiev held talks in the Turkish city of Istanbul in late March 2022, with the negotiations eventually collapsing. Several media outlets claimed that then- British Prime Minister Boris Johnson persuaded the Ukrainian leadership to withdraw and keep fighting.

One of Ukraine’s negotiators, David Arakhamia, confirmed the reports last November, but Johnson himself has staunchly denied derailing the peace process. Earlier this week, Antonov warned that further Western participation in the Ukraine conflict could lead to the “most unpredictable consequences.” The official also claimed that CIA Director William Burns had de facto acknowledged the “direct involvement of the United States” in the hostilities. Addressing the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence on Monday, Burns argued that additional funding for Ukraine would enable the country to conduct “deep penetration strikes in Crimea,” further target the Russian Black Sea Fleet, and eventually “regain the offensive initiative.”

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“The global politics of the new century can only be multipolar..”

Russia Created ‘New Global Majority’ – Presidential Hopeful (RT)

Russia is playing a crucial role in the emergence of the new multipolar world and has already become one of its centers of power, presidential hopeful Leonid Slutsky believes. Slutsky spoke to RT on Saturday, with the country going through the second day of its three-day presidential polls. The politician, who leads Russia’s right-wing Liberal Democratic Party (LDPR), is seeking the top office alongside three other candidates – incumbent President Vladimir Putin, Nikolay Haritonov, and Vladislav Davankov. With an election reportage blackout period in place, the conversation revolved around more global issues the country is facing now and will face in the future than around the candidate himself.

Russia is playing a crucial role in making the world multiploar, having already become one of the important centers in it, Slutsky has said. “[Russia], today, has in fact already created a new global majority on the planet. This is not the Anglo-Saxon majority, the new global majority is the global South, Africa, Latin America. These are many, many nations of larger Eurasia that are against the unipolar world order, where all the decisions, on how life goes in one or another country are being made in Washington,” the candidate explained. The emerging multipolar world is bound to become a more fair and equal place, where any country regardless of its size, cultural background or anything else, will be able to decide its destiny, Slutsky believes. “The global politics of the new century can only be multipolar,” he stressed.

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“The issue of the affiliation of Crimea and Sevastopol is closed. The peninsula is an integral part of Russia..”

Issue of Crimea’s Affiliation Resolved Forever – Lavrov (TASS)

Crimea and Sevastopol are integral parts of Russia and the issue of their affiliation is closed forever, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said in a video address on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of the peninsula’s reunification with Russia on Saturday. “The issue of the affiliation of Crimea and Sevastopol is closed. The peninsula is an integral part of Russia,” the top diplomat stressed. Crimea has clear-cut prospects of its further development and Russia has resolved many problems inherited from Ukraine, Lavrov pointed out. “Over the past years, many problems inherited from Ukraine have been resolved. With clear-cut prospects of their further development, Crimean residents can look into the future with confidence and optimism,” he added. “Ten years ago, on March 16, 2014, Crimean residents determined their future independently and consciously, having reunited with Russia. I congratulate the peninsula’s residents on the decade of the historic reunification with Russia. I wish them health, well-being, prosperity and all the best,” Russia’s top diplomat said.

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“..The UN has opened an investigation, while UNRWA defends itself against Israel’s accusations, and accuses Israel of torturing its employees to force false testimonies..”

Israel Is Starving Gaza (Sahiounie)

On March 12, a Spanish ship, ‘Open Arms’, left Cyprus for Gaza. It is expected to arrive on Friday, March 15 carrying 200 tons of aid. This desperate attempt to stave off famine in Gaza is the brain-child of Spanish-American celebrity chef, José Andrés, founder of the non-profit World Central Kitchen (WCK). WCK has Palestinians building a jetty in Gaza, utilizing rubble and materials from bombed buildings, which will play a role in offloading the food and supplies. This jetty is a temporary structure and in not related to the pier the U.S. is planning. “I had no doubt that we could open the maritime route. The most difficult thing was the diplomatic side of it, and the easiest thing was getting to Gaza,” said Andrés. Andrés is an advisor to the White House, and held countless meetings in Israel, Egypt and Jordan to obtain the necessary permits, while also obtaining support from Cyprus, King Abdullah II of Jordan and the United Arab Emirates, which has co-financed the mission together with WCK.

After arrival, the 130 pallets of aid will go into trucks to be delivered to the 60 kitchens that the WCK has set up in the Gaza Strip, and to other aid distribution points. Israel controls all land crossings into Gaza, which has seven border crossings, six with Israel and one with Egypt. However, only the crossing at Rafah, with Egypt, is partially open. The quickest and most efficient way to delivery aid to Gaza is by land and the gates that exist. But, Israel restricts aid and supplies from entering in Gaza. All of the aid agencies report that their donations sit in parked trucks, filled to overflowing, but unable to enter Gaza because the IDF has locked the gates and refuses to open them. Israel maintains that they will not allow any aid into Gaza which could be used by Hamas. The aid agencies have repeatedly asked for a list of restricted items so that they can make sure their cargoes meet the criteria. However, Israel refuses to publish or distribute a list of restricted items.

Instead, the IDF uses the aid as a weapon of war, intent on starving the civilians. The IDF claim that if they find one item in a cargo load which meets their undisclosed definition of prohibited items, they will not allow the entire cargo to enter. In one very famous case, the item was a single pair of small scissors to be used to cut the tape in conjunction with bandages. Doctors Without Borders, MSF, reported they have been repeatedly prohibited from importing electricity generators, water purifiers, solar panels and other medical equipment. On March 12, for the first time in three weeks, the UN’s World Food Program sent in six aid trucks to feed 25,000 people through a gate in the security fence. This is but a drop in an ocean of need, and is not sustainable. Some Arab nations, such as Morocco have sent supplies destined for Gaza to Israel’s Ben Gurion airport. All the experts agree, that land routes which already are established are the most efficient delivery method of aid to Gaza. But, it is Israel alone standing in the way, and this is their political objective.

Cargo trucks typically carry 20 tons, and the flow of trucks prior to the current conflict was about 500 a day. But, even that amount of daily arrivals would not meet the needs of the 2.3 million people in Gaza. Israel began a political campaign to discredit and destroy UNRWA, by accusing the agency of complicity with Hamas in the October 7 attack on Israel. With an accusation only, Israel was able to convince 16 donor countries to pull their funding, and have asked the UN General Assembly to disband the refugee agency, which would affect not only the people in Gaza, but also those in the Occupied West Bank. The agency is 75 years old, serves almost six million refugees, and now has had more than $437 million funds frozen. Spain announced a donation of $22 million on Thursday, and Canada and Sweden reported on Saturday that they would resume funding to the agency in light of unfounded claims, and the risk of famine.

The UN has opened an investigation, while UNRWA defends itself against Israel’s accusations, and accuses Israel of torturing its employees to force false testimonies that the IDF used as the basis of their accusations. Initially, the UN fired 12 UNRWA workers after the IDF claim. Philippe Lazzarini, the head of UNRWA, says that he has received no evidence of agency workers in conspiracy with Hamas. However, 150 UNRWA employees have died while working in Gaza, and 3,000 have been left homeless.

Finkelstein

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Trojan horse.

EU ‘Media Freedom’ Law Not What You Think It Is (Marsden)

The EU’s new Media Freedom Act has now been voted into law, with 464 votes for, 92 against, and 65 abstentions. There are some news outlets whose coverage of the vote I’d like to see. Like RT’s, where you’re reading this right now. But anyone who’s viewing this from inside the European Union’s bastion of democracy and freedom is likely doing so via a VPN connection routed through somewhere outside the bloc, to circumvent its press censorship.Nothing in this new law suggests that this will change, or that there will be increased access to information and analysis for the average person. Such improved freedoms might lead to people making up their own minds rather than having various flavors of a similar narrative served up for mass consumption. As has become par for the course in so-called Western democracies, inconvenient facts and analysis will still be dismissed as “disinformation” and criticism of the establishment still qualified as an effort to sow division – as though dissent itself wasn’t supposed to be proof of a healthy and vibrant democracy.

So, now that we’ve gotten out of the way any hope of lifting the EU’s top-down censorship in the absence of due process, exactly what kind of lip service does this new law pay to the lofty notion of media freedom?No spying on journalists or pressing them to disclose their sources. Well, unless you’re one of the countries that lobbied to be able to keep doing this – like France, Italy, Malta, Greece, Cyprus, Sweden, and Finland – so basically, a quarter of EU countries. Oh, but they have to invoke national-security concerns in order to do so. Which, as we know, they’re very discerning about. Like, they didn’t at all implement a virtual police state and extend its powers under the guise of fighting a virus with which French President Emmanuel Macron kept saying they were “at war.” Nor did Amnesty International point out the sweeping “Orwellian” trend across Europe, at least as far back as 2017, of exploiting domestic terrorist attacks to permanently embed what were supposed to be extraordinary powers into criminal law, via measures like “overly broad definitions of terrorism.”

So, no doubt they’ll be equally reasonable when slapping the “national security threat” label on a journalist whose work they want to peek at. At least now, under this new law, they do have to fully inform any targeted journalist of the steps being taken against them. Another thing that changes is that there’s to be a centralized database into which “all news and current affairs outlets regardless of their size will have to publish information about their owners,” according to an EU press release. May we propose a first candidate for that? The NGO Reporters Without Borders has praised this new law as a “major step forward for the right to information within the European Union.” The same NGO also just launched a “Svoboda” (Russian for “freedom”) satellite package eventually consisting “of up to 25 independent Russian language radio and television channels” aimed at Russia, Ukraine, and the Baltics.

The launch took place at the EU parliament, in the presence of EU “values and transparency” commissioner (yes, that’s a real title), Vera Jourova, who has said in support of the new media law that “it is a threat to those who want to use the power of the state, also the financial one, to make the media dependent on them.” But she has also said about this new Russia-targeting initiative that the EU state needs to “use all possible means to ensure that their work, that facts and information can reach Russian-speaking people.” This is the same person who advocated in favor of banning Russia-linked media outlets in the EU.

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A new one every day.

”..a flight attendant accidentally hit a switch on the pilot’s seat, which pushed the pilot into the controls..”

Boeing Tells Pilots To Check Seats After Latam Plane Incident (BBC)

Boeing has told airlines operating 787 Dreamliners that pilots need to check their seats as an investigation into an incident on a Latam flight continues. It comes after 50 people were hurt this week when a 787 dropped suddenly during a Latam Airlines flight. The Wall Street Journal reported that a flight attendant accidentally hit a switch on the pilot’s seat, which pushed the pilot into the controls, forcing down the plane’s nose. Latam is supporting investigations. During the incident people were thrown against the roof of the plane, which was travelling from Australia to New Zealand. Passenger Brian Jokat said at the time that a number of people suffered head injuries. Speaking to the BBC, Mr Jokat revealed that people had hit the ceiling with such force “some of the roof panels were broken”.

The person next to him, he added, appeared to be “glued to the ceiling”. “I did think for a split second: ‘This is it’,” he said. Emergency services later said one person was in a serious condition. Boeing said: “The investigation of Flight LA800 is ongoing and we defer to the investigation authorities on any potential findings.” “We have taken the precautionary measure of reminding 787 operators of a service bulletin issued in 2017 which included instructions for inspecting and maintaining switches on flight deck seats.” It recommended that operators perform an inspection of the switches “at the next maintenance opportunity”.

Chilean-Brazilian carrier Latam Airlines said it “continues to work in coordination with the authorities in order to support the ongoing investigation”. The aircraft was scheduled to fly on from Auckland to Santiago, the capital of Chile. The departure was cancelled and a new flight scheduled for Tuesday. The incident comes after a door panel came off a Boeing plane in January this year, with a report in February finding bolts meant to secure the panel were missing. And this week, a former Boeing employee known for raising concerns about the firm’s production standards was found dead in the US.

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“That’s worth fighting for on behalf of all Americans.”

Peter Navarro Asks Supreme Court to Avoid Reporting to Prison (ET)

Former Trump White House aide Peter Navarro on March 15 asked the Supreme Court to allow him to avoid reporting to prison for a contempt of Congress conviction as the matter is being appealed. His request came after the U.S. Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit denied his request for release from prison pending appeal. Mr. Navarro revealed on March 10 that he was ordered to report to a Miami prison on March 19 for a four-month sentence. Mr. Navarro filed an emergency petition to Chief Justice John Roberts on Friday afternoon, arguing that his appeal “will raise a number of issues on appeal that he contends are likely to result in the reversal of his conviction, or a new trial.” “For the first time in our nation’s history, a senior presidential advisor has been convicted of contempt of Congress after asserting executive privilege over a congressional subpoena,” Mr. Navarro’s lawyers wrote.

“Navarro is indisputably neither a flight risk nor a danger to public safety should he be released pending appeal,” they added. Mr. Navarro was convicted in 2023 of contempt of Congress for defying a subpoena from the House Jan. 6 select committee. His bid to stay out of prison while he appeals his conviction was turned down initially in February by U.S. District Judge Amit Mehta, who found that the trade adviser to former President Donald Trump failed to pose any substantial questions of law in his motion. Mr. Navarro then asked an appeals court to overturn Judge Mehta’s ruling. In the decision on March 14, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit rejected another bid.

“Appellant has not shown that his appeal presents substantial questions of law or fact likely to result in reversal, new trial, a sentence that does not include a term of imprisonment, or a reduced sentence of imprisonment that is less than the amount of time already served plus the expected duration of the appeal process,” the court said. The Justice Department’s appellate filing echoed Judge Mehta’s claim that Mr. Navarro hadn’t provided sufficient evidence to the court that President Trump invoked executive privilege. In denying Mr. Navarro’s request for release, Judge Mehta stated that Mr. Navarro failed at an evidentiary hearing to carry his burden of establishing a formal claim of privilege.

“United States v. Peter Navarro is a landmark constitutional case that will eventually determine whether the constitutional separation of powers is preserved, whether executive privilege will continue to exist as a bulwark against partisan attacks by the legislative branch, and whether executive privilege will remain, as President George Washington pioneered, a critical instrument of effective presidential decision-making,” Mr. Navarro said in a statement to The Epoch Times. “That’s worth fighting for on behalf of all Americans.”

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Lemon is not a very smart man.

Don Lemon Made Crazy Demands Before Elon Musk Canned Him (NYP)

Don Lemon demanded the sun, the moon and the stars from the SpaceX boss – before being unceremoniously dumped this week, The Post has learned. The ex-CNN anchor sent over an astronomical wish list to Elon Musk during contract talks to host a show on the billionaire’s social media platform X – including a free Tesla Cybertruck, a $5 million upfront payment on top of an $8 million salary, an equity stake in the multibillion-dollar company, and the right to approve any changes in X policy as it relates to news content, according to a document reviewed by The Post. Lemon — who was expected to air an interview with Musk for next week’s debut episode on X — had also demanded a private jet flight to Las Vegas, a suite for him and his fiance, and that the company pay for their day drinking and massages, a source with knowledge of the situation said.

Musk agreed to do the interview with Lemon despite the fact that he was aware of some of Lemon’s outlandish demands, sources told The Post. The proposal reviewed by The Post was sent from Lemon’s agents at United Talent Agency to X’s leadership in December. The partnership was announced in January, but an X spokesperson told The Post that the company “did not have a final or signed agreement with Don Lemon or ‘The Don Lemon Show’” before Musk sat down for the explosive interview last week. Jay Sures, vice chairman at UTA, told The Post: “This is absolute, complete utter nonsense without an iota of truth to it.” Lemon was fired hours after the one-on-one sit-down, with Musk calling the anchor “dull” and “underwhelming.” The one-and-half hour grilling included testy exchanges about Musk’s political leanings, his past drug use and the site’s content moderation policy. It is scheduled to run on YouTube next week.

Lemon claimed on Wednesday that he was jettisoned by X because Musk reneged on his “free speech” pledge. Lemon’s discussions with the company began shortly after he was fired by CNN last April after a series of high-profile incidents, according to sources with knowledge of the situation. In an interview with veteran tech journalist Kara Swisher on Friday, Lemon claimed they held discussions over the summer in which the company threatened to fire him if he did not attend the Consumer Electronic Show in Las Vegas. CES, which was held earlier this year between Jan. 7 and 10, is one of the most highly anticipated events on the tech calendar as companies including X flock to the show in order to schmooze advertisers. A spokesperson for X called Lemon’s claim “a disingenuous lie.”

Lemon wanted to be flown to the convention with his longtime fiance on a private jet and be put up in a private suite, as well as for X to foot the bill for alcoholic beverages and massages that he and his fiance ordered during their stay at the Vdara, the MGM-run resort on the Las Vegas Strip, according to people familiar with the matter. The negotiations progressed after Musk brought former NBCUniversal advertising executive Linda Yaccarino on board as chief executive officer of X, sources said. But the talks stalled over Lemon’s extensive demands, which included executive assistants as well as a marketing budget that ranged from $10 million to $15 million, people with knowledge of the situation told The Post. A spokesperson for Lemon told The Post: “There is nothing in your list of demands that you claim Don made of X that is true. Literally nothing.”

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“The vast constellation of low-Earth orbit satellites will be able to track targets on the ground in real time nearly anywhere across the world..”

Musk Building Huge Spy Satellite Network – Reuters (RT)

Elon Musk’s secretive Starshield project will allow the US military and spies to track their targets and support American and allied ground forces in real time almost anywhere across the globe, Reuters has reported, sharing new details about the billionaire’s dealings with the Pentagon. SpaceX has been launching prototype military satellites alongside “civilian” payloads on Falcon 9 rockets since at least 2020, before eventually securing a lucrative $1.8 billion contract with the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) in 2021, Reuters wrote on Saturday, citing five unnamed sources familiar with the project. The vast constellation of low-Earth orbit satellites will be able to track targets on the ground in real time nearly anywhere across the world, the sources claimed. One of them boasted that Starshield would ensure “no one can hide” from the US government. Starshield also reportedly aims to be “more resilient to attacks” by rival space powers.

It remains unclear how many Starshield satellites are currently operational and when the sytem is expected to fully come online, with SpaceX and the Pentagon ignoring Reuters’ requests for comment. The NRO admitted that it is developing “the most capable, diverse, and resilient space-based intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance system the world has ever seen,” but refused to comment on SpaceX’s role in the project. The SpaceX CEO previously acknowledged the development of the military alternative to the “civilian” Starlink system, saying in September that it would be “owned by the US government” and controlled by the Department of Defense. “Starlink needs to be a civilian network, not a participant to combat,” Musk said, referring to the use of the satellites in Ukraine throughout the conflict with Russia. Musk donated around 20,000 Starlink terminals to Ukraine shortly after Russia launched its military operation in February 2022. Since then, Kiev’s troops heavily relied on the system to maintain communications and operate combat drones along the front line.

While pledging support for Ukraine, Musk has repeatedly said he favors a peaceful resolution of the conflict. The billionaire has come under fire from US officials after refusing Kiev’s demands to use the Starlink network to aid strikes on Russia’s Black Sea fleet. In turn, Musk argued that activating Starlink in Crimea would be in breach of US sanctions. In the absence of any direct orders from the US leadership, SpaceX opted not to contravene regulations despite Kiev’s request to do so, the entrepreneur explained. Earlier this month, US lawmakers reportedly launched another probe into SpaceX, after Ukrainian claims that Russian troops allegedly used Starlink satellite service on the conflict frontline. Musk has denied the allegations, insisting that “no Starlinks have been sold directly or indirectly to Russia.” The Kremlin has also insisted that the Russian military has never ordered Starlink terminals.

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An overview can be handy, even if it’s BBC.

Where Donald Trump’s Four Criminal Trials Stand After More Delays (BBC)

New York document dump Mr Trump’s New York City trial on charges that his hush-money payments to adult film star Stormy Daniels constituted business fraud and violated federal campaign finance laws was scheduled a week from Monday, on 25 March. That’s no longer the case. The US justice department just turned over more than 73,000 pages of documents related to its own hush-money investigations that the Trump legal team had subpoenaed back in January. Another 15,000 pages are still expected. “Prosecutors have been stumbling a bit,” says John Coffee, a professor at Columbia University. He adds that the confusion and delays in producing documents make it seem as though the justice department and the New York district attorney’s office are feuding.

The former president’s lawyers requested a 30-day trial delay, which the New York prosecutors agreed not to block. That’s just the start, though. Mr Trump’s lawyers want hearings into why the documents, which include witness interviews, took so long to produce. They also want an additional delay for time to review the new evidence and prevent the trial from starting on Passover and, for good measure, a dismissal of the case entirely. Trial date: Originally scheduled for 25 March, on Friday it was delayed until April, at the earliest.

Fani’s choice After days of tense legal hearings, the judge presiding over the sprawling 2020 election-interference case against Mr Trump and 18 of his co-defendants issued his decision on whether Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis can remain in charge of the prosecution. The answer is yes – but with a catch. Either she or Nathan Wade, the special prosecutor she hired – and had a romantic relationship with – will have to step aside. Mr Wade resigned on Friday. Judge Scott McAfee said that there were “reasonable questions” about whether the two attorneys had testified untruthfully and an “appearance of impropriety” that had to be remedied.

While he ultimately concluded that evidence did not support removing the district attorney entirely, such language will provide plenty of ammunition for Mr Trump and his team to use in the court of public opinion, where they might be able to shape the views of prospective jurors. “Everybody here is likely to be influenced by the news coverage of the judge’s decision,” says Adrienne Jones, an assistant political science professor at Atlanta’s Morehouse College. “It’s not likely people are ignorant of what’s happening.” The judge’s announcement comes just a few days after he dismissed three of the 13 charges against the former president for being too vague. Prosecutors will have an opportunity to clarify and re-indict Mr Trump, however. Trial date: The prosecution has proposed an 5 August start.

Classified files slow-walk Down in Fort Pierce, Florida, Judge Aileen Cannon has been reviewing a series of attempts by Trump’s legal team to get the federal case against the president for obstruction of justice and mishandling classified documents dismissed. On Thursday, she rejected one of the motions – but she must decide on six others and seems in no big hurry to do so. She is also expected to issue a decision at some point on a schedule for when the trial will begin. At the moment, the start date is 20 May, but both the prosecution and Mr Trump’s teams have suggested pushing that back. Ms Cannon, who was appointed to the federal bench by the former president, is considering how to handle disclosure of the troves of classified documents that are part of the case, and any decision – or appeal of that decision – could lead to even more extensive delays. Trial date: Special Counsel Jack Smith has offered 8 July as a rescheduled start. Mr Trump’s lawyers have said that if the case isn’t pushed after the election entirely, the earliest they would be ready to begin is August.

Supreme Court limbo The biggest case against the former president, the federal prosecution for his role in the 6 January, 2021, attack on the US Capitol, is also the one that is in the most doubt. The US Supreme Court has agreed to review whether Mr Trump is immune from criminal prosecution for actions he took as president. The high court stepped in after two lower-level courts ruled that the trial could proceed. Last week, the court set oral arguments for the case on 25 April, and at this rate the justices may not issue a decision until the end of June, near the end of their formal session. Once the Supreme Court hands down its ruling, assuming it does not say that Mr Trump is immune, the judge presiding over the trial has estimated that it will take an additional 88 days to get ready for a trial. This all plays into Mr Trump’s primary legal strategy, which has been to push back all the legal cases against him for as long as possible and, if preferable, until after the November election. If he wins there, and returns to the presidency in January 2025, there are multiple ways he could make the federal cases against him disappear. “They are the masters of delay,” says Prof Jones. Trial date: Not scheduled and not expected anytime soon.

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Jim Carrey meets Jerry Lewis

 

 

Ibogaine
https://twitter.com/i/status/1769021393209856148

 

 

Elephant
https://twitter.com/i/status/1768809775360577950

 

 

Dromedary

 

 

 

 

Shave

 

 

Percentages
https://twitter.com/i/status/1768867288512643563

 

 

Salt water

 

 

Sunset

 

 

Innocents
https://twitter.com/i/status/1768728247796216212

 

 

Baduanjin

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Aug 072023
 
 August 7, 2023  Posted by at 9:00 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,  53 Responses »


Edward Hopper Chair Car 1965

 

Donald Trump Vows To Prosecute Biden If Elected (RT)
Ukraine Warns Of ‘Significant Weapons Shortage’ (RT)
NATO Instructors Trained Neo-Nazi Azov Battalion Soldiers in 2021 (Sp.)
Zelensky Adviser Casts Doubt On Future Relations With Poland (RT)
Peskov Says NYT Misinterpreted His Words About 2024 Election (TASS)
US Dollar ‘Verging on Breakdown’ Hits Skids As Inflation Data Nears (Sp.)
Gold Is Replacing The Dollar (Macleod)
Maduro Castigates Silence Of European Leaders On Quran Burning (TASS)
Zuckerberg Tells Musk He’s Ready To Fight ‘Today’ (RT)

 

 

 

 

When TRUMP won
https://twitter.com/i/status/1687988391986540544

 

 

 

 

“The tables must turn, and we will destroy the Deep State.”

Donald Trump Vows To Prosecute Biden If Elected (RT)

Republican frontrunner Donald Trump told an audience in Alabama on Friday that he will appoint a special prosecutor to investigate potential illegality perpetrated by the “Biden crime family” on his first day in office if he reclaims the White House in 2024. Trump, who has been indicted three times in the past four months amid a range of criminal investigations into his conduct, told the crowd at a fundraising event in Montgomery: “On Election Day 2024, we are going to evict crooked Joe Biden from the White House. We are going to expel the criminals and thugs from the halls of power in Washington.” The former US president added that a special prosecutor would be appointed on his “first day in office,” who would “study each and every of the main claims being brought forth by Congress concerning all the crooked acts, including bribes from China and many other foreign countries that go into the coffers of the Biden crime family.”

Trump was speaking just a day after pleading not guilty to various charges, including conspiracy to defraud the United States, brought by Special Counsel Jack Smith as part of an investigation into the circumstances surrounding the January 6, 2021 riots at the US Capitol in Washington, DC. The 77-year-old also faces simultaneous probes related to allegations that he deliberately withheld classified documents at his Florida estate, and obstructed government efforts to recover them. He is also involved in another case brought by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg related to financial fraud and falsifying business records. He denies all claims of wrongdoing. Trump, whom polling suggests is the clear frontrunner to claim the Republican Party’s presidential nomination next year, told the Montgomery crowd that the “fake charges” being brought against him amounted to “election interference.”

“The reason this is happening is simple,” Trump said. “Joe Biden is the most incompetent and corrupt president in US history.”Trump didn’t elaborate on his claims of criminal activity by the Bidens but they are thought to be linked to allegations that Joe Biden and his son Hunter improperly profited from an association with Ukrainian natural gas company Burisma Holdings. The Bidens deny allegations of illegality linked to Ukraine, as well allegations of improper ties to China. Hunter Biden is also currently involved in court proceedings, including allegations of tax fraud. And if he returns to the Oval Office, Trump was clear on what he believes must be done: “The tables must turn, and we will destroy the Deep State.”

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No, you cannot “win the war” against Russia. Stop pretending. Save lives.

Ukraine Warns Of ‘Significant Weapons Shortage’ (RT)

Ukraine’s military campaign is being held back by a lack of weaponry, and allies need to provide additional supplies to effectively counter Russia, the top aide to Ukraine’s president has claimed. “From the point of view of battlefield parity, there is indeed a significant shortage,” Mikhail Podoliak said on Friday, live on national TV. Kiev needs more artillery shells and long-range missiles, and is experiencing a “certain shortage” of de-mining equipment, he added. The military is also having difficulties repairing damaged armor. Podoliak said the key items Ukraine still lacks are anti-aircraft systems and sophisticated fighter jets, specifically the US-made F-16. Kiev has been asking its Western backers to provide F-16s for months, insisting that the fighters would help “win the war” against Russia.


Washington and its allies, however, have so far proven reluctant to provide the jets, with US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan suggesting the aircraft would have only a limited impact on the battlefield due to the extensive use of air defense systems in Ukraine. Since the start of the conflict, Ukraine has been demanding increasingly sophisticated weaponry from its backers. The Western-supplied hardware has been extensively used by Kiev in the current counteroffensive, launched in early June. The campaign has so far failed to yield any tangible results, while dozens of Western-supplied items, including US-made Bradley infantry fighting vehicles, German-made Leopard 2 tanks, and Swedish-made CV90 armored vehicles, have ended up destroyed or captured. Moscow has repeatedly urged the West to stop “pumping” Ukraine with assorted weaponry, warning that continued military aid will only prolong the conflict and inflict more destruction on Ukraine rather than change the ultimate outcome.

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Did the Russians really have a choice? Or were they forced to invade?

NATO Instructors Trained Neo-Nazi Azov Battalion Soldiers in 2021 (Sp.)

NATO military instructors from Denmark and the United Kingdom trained Ukrainian soldiers at a base of the nationalist Azov battalion* (banned in Russia), despite Azov’s exclusion from US military funding due to its radicalism, according to documents from the Danish embassy in Kiev seen by Sputnik on Sunday. A note from the Danish embassy dated May 21, 2021, informed the Ukrainian Defense Ministry of the arrival of six instructors for the 56-th Ukrainian army brigade in Berdyansk and Urzuf, where Azov’s main base was located. “These sites were previously investigated by Russian law enforcement officers, and the materials found there directly point to intensive training of mobilized Ukrainian citizens by Western officers, using criminal methods of warfare, which the Azovs were fluent in,” a law enforcement officer told Sputnik.

The instructors of the UK’s OP ORBITAL training team had already been present in Ukraine before, the document showed. “Operation ORBITAL is the code name of a UK program to train Ukrainian army servicepeople from the mobilization reserve. I note that these officers, as stated in the text of the document, have access to classified information, which indicates that Ukraine has provided access to information constituting state secrets, including mobilization planning documents,” the officer said. Despite the fact that the Azov battalion has been recognized by the United States as a neo-Nazi organization, NATO forces were directly involved in training of nationalist armed formations, they noted. “This is evidence of Kiev’s intensive preparations for active combat operations under NATO’s supervision,” the law enforcement officer concluded.

In August 2022, the Russian Supreme Court designated Azov as a terrorist organization. The Russian Prosecutor General’s Office said that Azov militants use prohibited means and methods of warfare and are complicit in the torture of civilians and the killing of children.

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How about future borders with Poland?

Zelensky Adviser Casts Doubt On Future Relations With Poland (RT)

Poland and Ukraine will begin “competing” after the resolution of hostilities between Kiev and Moscow, Mikhail Podoliak, the top aide to Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky, has claimed. The senior official made the remarks on Friday during a live appearance on Ukrainian TV. The existing “friendship” between Poland and Ukraine will not last forever, he warned. “Today, Poland is the most-close partner and the most close friend for us. And, basically, it will remain as such until the end of the war,” Podoliak stated. After the hostilities end the two countries will be “competing” with each other, he added, struggling to control “these or those markets, consumer markets, and so on.”

Over the course of the ongoing conflict, Warsaw has asserted itself as the main backer of Ukraine in Eastern Europe and one of its main supporters among Western countries. It has lavishly supplied Ukraine with assorted weaponry and military hardware while at the same time becoming a top hub for war-supply deliveries from elsewhere. In addition, the heavy presence of Polish-speaking mercenaries fighting for Kiev has been repeatedly reported from the frontline. The seemingly flourishing ties between Poland and Ukraine, however, have been heavily dented by a bitter row over agricultural produce. Earlier this year, Poland and other Eastern European nations endured mass protests by farmers, who called for an embargo on cheaper Ukrainian produce, which had damaged local markets.

The situation was temporarily defused by Brussels, which introduced ‘temporary restrictions’ on Ukrainian exports in May in order to protect farmers in Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, Romania, and Bulgaria. However, the ban does not prohibit the transit of Ukrainian agricultural produce. This week, Polish agriculture minister Robert Telus vowed to unilaterally embargo Ukrainian produce should the EU fail to extend the restrictions, set to expire on September 15. “I want to make it clear that after September 15, Ukrainian grain will still not be transported to Poland,” Telus warned.

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Putin is too popular.

Peskov Says NYT Misinterpreted His Words About 2024 Election (TASS)

Russian presidential press secretary Dmitry Peskov told TASS on Sunday that The New York Times has misinterpreted his words about the upcoming presidential election in Russia in 2024 where Putin will be re-elected by more than 90% of votes. The New York Times earlier on Sunday quoted Peskov as saying that presidential election in Russia “is not really democracy, it is costly bureaucracy” and that “Putin will be re-elected next year with more than 90% of the vote.” The article was written by Roger Cohen. “The author of the article interpreted [my words] in an absolutely wrong way,” Peskov told TASS. He confirmed that he had met and spoken to this journalist and one of his questions had been about the upcoming election.


“And the answer was the following: the level of consolidation around the president is absolutely unprecedented and it can be said already now that if he runs [for president], he will be reelected by an overwhelming majority, and the election – theoretically – only entail unnecessary spending,” he said. However, according to Peskov, he told the journalist that “the president insisted that the election be organized without fail, that this is what democracy requires.” “And the president said this in his state-of-the-nation address,” the Kremlin spokesman stressed. Apart from that, he added that he shared his personal opinion with the journalist. Presidential election will be held in Russia in March 2024. Putin has the right to run for another term in office but has not yet announced his election plans.

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Got the gold?

US Dollar ‘Verging on Breakdown’ Hits Skids As Inflation Data Nears (Sp.)

Last month, the US dollar index sank below its critical 100-level benchmark, amid reports about the greenback being on the “verge of a decisive breakdown.” The US currency has dipped to a one-week low against a basket of currencies in the aftermath of the market’s focus turning to America’s soon-to-be-published inflation data. Media reports said that the so-called US dollar index (USDX) – a measure of the greenback’s value relative to a batch of foreign currencies – “last stood at 101.98, languishing near Friday’s low of 101.73.” US inflation data is due to be released on Thursday, amid speculation that the country’s core inflation soared by 4.7% on an annual basis last month.

Separate reports also suggested that the US Federal Reserve “may need to keep rates higher for longer” in light of a “still-tight labor market.” The current fall of the greenback comes after the USDX plummeted below its important 100 level in mid-July to a low of 99.47, prompting an American business news outlet to report that the US dollar is “on the verge of a decisive breakdown that would reverse much of the gains the currency enjoyed over the past two years.” The outlet cited senior analyst Will Tamplin of an independent market research company as saying that “the breakdown in the Dollar Index is associated with a pending breakout in the euro.”

These developments are unfolding against the backdrop of de-dollarization, the process of reducing the US dollar’s hegemony in global trade and financial operations by shifting to alternative exchange methods, including national currencies and domestic payment systems, as well as modifying currency reserves. Right now, numerous countries are lining up to move away from the greenback and scrap the use of the US currency in trade transactions. These include Russia, China, India, Brazil as well as Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

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“Our politicians will have to wean themselves off from their habitual promises to give everyone everything..”

Gold Is Replacing The Dollar (Macleod)

All the vibes coming out of the Russian and Chinese axis strongly point to a new gold-linked trade settlement currency being proposed at the BRICS summit in Johannesburg later this month. Until the details are revealed, we won’t know what this proposal actually is, whether it will fly, whether it will be simply imposed on BRICS members, or if they will have a say about its introduction and if so its form. All we can deduce is that Russia is leading this project and as an educated guess it will incorporate work by Sergei Glazyev. What we do know is that the majority of the world measured by population and GDP (on a PPP basis) is becoming confident enough to throw off the yoke of American imperialism, and with it will go the hegemonic power of the fiat dollar. And remaining tied to the dollar, it would appear that the days of western fiat currencies are similarly numbered.

In the western alliance, economists and investors alike will have to re-educate themselves about how the relationship between gold and credit works, and what is required to ensure that the link between them endures. Our politicians will have to wean themselves off from their habitual promises to give everyone everything. They will have to stop believing that they know how to deliver outcomes better than free markets. Social legislation must be rescinded, regulations annulled, and responsibility for the actions of individuals handed back to them. The position of Russia, China, the members associates and dialog partners of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, and BRICS+ is far stronger. None of them are burdened with the social and socialist responsibilities of the so-called advanced nations. They are in a position to operate currency boards to secure the value of their credit systems.

But instead of a currency board attached to the dollar, it must be attached directly or indirectly to gold. A gold standard can be regarded as a type of currency board — indeed, it was its forerunner.

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I don’t get that silence. Respect people’s religions.

Maduro Castigates Silence Of European Leaders On Quran Burning (TASS)

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has sharply criticized the silence of ruling circles in European countries over extremists who desecrated the Quran, the holy book for Muslims, in Sweden and Denmark. “I condemn these racist acts of hatred against Muslim nations,” he told the Al Mayadeen TV, “The silence of European leaders over the burning of copies of the Quran is surprising, which amounts to their complicity in the crime.” According to Maduro, it is impossible to turn a blind eye to such provocations that humiliate Islam and its followers. “What would European Christians say if a Bible was burned in front of them? Therefore, the angry reaction of the Islamic world to the desecration of copies of the holy book is quite natural,” he pointed out.


Anti-Islamic actions involving the burning of the Quran took place on July 25 near the embassies of Egypt and Turkey in Copenhagen. A similar action was carried out a day earlier in front of the Iraqi embassy. All were organized by the far-right ultranationalist group Danish Patriots. On June 28, the burning of the Quran took place during a police-authorized demonstration in downtown Stockholm. Salwan Momika, a 37-year-old Iraqi immigrant, tore pages from the Quran and set it on fire. On July 20, he staged another provocation in front of the Iraqi embassy in Stockholm, prompting protesters to attack the Swedish embassy in Baghdad.

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“Zuckerberg was left skeptical of the idea suggesting “a more reliable platform that can actually raise money.”

Zuckerberg Tells Musk He’s Ready To Fight ‘Today’ (RT)

Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg is up in arms and ready to fight with his tech rival Elon Musk, but is doubtful the “cage match” will materialize, as X (formerly Twitter) owner, supposedly, has never accepted the date. “I am ready today,” Zuck posted on his social media platform Threads on Sunday, “but not holding the breath,” adding that his proposed date, August 26, has never been confirmed. The remarks come in response to Musk’s tweet on Sunday morning, when he announced that he was training for the battle. “Am lifting weights throughout the day, preparing for the fight,” he said. In a tweet later the same day, the SpaceX CEO claimed that “Zuck v Musk fight will be live-streamed on X with all proceeds going to charity for veterans.”


Zuckerberg was left skeptical of the idea suggesting “a more reliable platform that can actually raise money.” The high profile “cage match” between two billionaires was first mentioned in June, when Elon Musk and Zuckerberg were trading barbs for several days on social media, over Zuckerberg’s plan to launch a rival to Twitter. The Vegas Octagon arena, which hosts UFC fights, was suggested as a venue. Musk seemed serious in his intentions to fight his nemesis, allegedly appealing earlier this month to former UFC champion Khabib Nurmagomedov, for help with training, but was reportedly turned down. Elon Musk’s mother tried canceling the fight, asking people to stop encouraging her son to fight the Meta CEO.

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Aug 062023
 
 August 6, 2023  Posted by at 9:11 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , ,  37 Responses »


El Greco St. Paul and St. Peter 1595

 

Asians Are Less ‘Humane’ – Ukrainian Security Chief (RT)
Who is Responsible for Ukraine’s Failed Counteroffensive? (Scott Ritter)
What Should Russia Expect From Saudi Arabia’s Ukraine ‘Peace Summit’? (RT)
Ex-Pakistani PM Imran Khan Jailed For Three Years (RT)
DOJ Seeks Protective Order in Election Case (ET)
A Successful Prosecution Would Fold Space And Time (Taibbi)
Niger Junta Turns To Wagner For Help – Media (RT)
X to Fund Legal Bills of People ‘Unfairly Treated’ for Posts, Likes on X (Sp.)
Austrian PM Proposes Constitutional ‘Right to Cash’ (Sp.)

 

 

 

 

Macgregor

 

 

 

 

 

 

Full German Nazism, complete with Untermenschen etc. This is what you fund.

Asians Are Less ‘Humane’ – Ukrainian Security Chief (RT)

Russians are “Asians” and, therefore, lack the “humanity” that Ukrainians purportedly possess, Aleksey Danilov, the head of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council, has claimed. The top official made the remark as he spoke live on Ukrainian TV, which has been heavily censored and turned into a state-approved “broadcasting marathon” amid the ongoing conflict. “I’m fine with Asians, but Russians are Asians. They have a completely different culture, vision. Our key difference from them is humanity,” Danilov stated. The security chief, as well as other top Ukrainian officials, have repeatedly made hateful remarks about Russians during – and even well before – the ongoing hostilities between the two countries broke out back in February 2022.


Danilov has repeatedly promised to “kill” Russians anywhere across the globe, with similar extreme statements consistently made by Mikhail Podoliak, the top aide to Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky. Podoliak has repeatedly claimed that all Ukrainians universally “hate Russians,” as well as voiced calls to “kill Russians” on a daily basis. Similarly radical remarks have been repeatedly made by the Ukrainian military spy chief, Kirill Budanov, who also expressed the same urge. Threats by the latter have been addressed by Russia’s permanent envoy to the UN, Vassily Nebenzia, who branded them a “blatant example of hateful remarks, Russophobia and incitement of violence based on nationality.”

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“.. the fetid stench of rotting corpses, abandoned by their comrades who fled for their lives.”

Who is Responsible for Ukraine’s Failed Counteroffensive? (Scott Ritter)

On a normal summer’s day, the road to Rabotino would be empty, save for the odd combine tractor and the vehicles driven by farmers and their families as they tend to the fields of crops they had planted in spring. The summer’s heat would reflect off the horizon, creating glimmering mirages, while the still air would echo with the chirping of birds and the buzzing of insects. On a normal summer’s day, the road to Rabotino would resemble paradise. Today, the road to Rabotino can best be described as a highway to hell: the serene landscape scarred with craters made by artillery shells, bombs, and mines. Fields that once grew crops intended to feed the world now seem to produce another crop—the torn, burned-out hulks of Ukrainian tanks, infantry fighting vehicles, and other military vehicles of all shapes and sizes.

The air buzzes not with bees, but bullets, and the sky above is torn by the sound of shells passing overhead, on their way to their intended target, often consisting of a new crop of military metal waiting to be consumed by fire. The smell of fresh soil, young crops, and flowers of the field has been replaced by the fetid stench of rotting corpses, abandoned by their comrades who fled for their lives. The Russian Ministry of Defense has assessed that, since the Ukrainian counteroffensive began in early June, the Ukrainian Army has suffered some 43,000 casualties, with more than 4,900 pieces of equipment, including 1,831 tanks and infantry fighting vehicles (among which are included 25 German-made Leopard tanks and 21 US-made M-2 Bradley Infantry Fighting Vehicles) having been destroyed.

Russian casualties, while unspecified, have been alluded to by President Putin, who stated that the kill ratio was 10:1 in Russia’s favor. That equates to 4,300 casualties: the brutal blade of war cuts both ways. The casualties suffered by Ukraine roughly align with the casualties suffered by German forces during their offensive operations against the Soviet Army in the battle of Kursk, fought in the month of July and August 1943. The Kursk battle was one of the largest during the Second World War.This should give one an idea of the scope and scale of the violence which has transpired in and around the village of Rabotino, and elsewhere in the Zaporozhye and Donetsk regions where Ukraine and Russian forces are confronting one another.

When an army suffers a defeat of the scope and scale of that suffered by Ukraine near Rabotino, and in other fields and villages across the line of contact with Russia, it is normally incumbent upon the leadership of the defeated forces to ascertain the reasons why the defeat occurred, and then to undertake remedial action to correct the problems identified.It came weeks after being on the receiving end of criticism from their erstwhile allies and partners in NATO, who provided Ukraine with both the material used to equip the Ukrainian Army, and training on how this equipment was to be used in battle against the Russians.

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Where’s China?

What Should Russia Expect From Saudi Arabia’s Ukraine ‘Peace Summit’? (RT)

Political expert Andrey Dubnov:

The goal of the conference is not to formulate “agreements acceptable to all parties.” Russia has not been invited to this event, and this makes sense, because otherwise the meeting would have been doomed to failure. It is obvious that Moscow’s position has been articulated; the last time it was expressed was at the Russia-Africa summit. Moscow’s main position is essentially an arrangement that can be called a ceasefire, based on Russia’s retention of the Ukrainian territories now organized as four Russian regions. It is difficult to imagine that Moscow is prepared to abandon this as its main negotiating position. On the other hand, Kiev’s stance on peace is articulated as being possible only if Russia withdraws its troops to the 1991 borders. With such positions of the parties, a general meeting would be pointless.

What is the purpose of the summit in Saudi Arabia? Since this initiative comes mainly from Kiev and is backed by the US, it is now about consolidating the whole wider world – not just the West, but the big South, including the BRICS member countries (India, Brazil and South Africa). It is an attempt to find a consolidated expression of support for the Ukrainian peace plan. Within this “formula of support” there are some limits regarding the flexibility of Kiev’s negotiating position: under what conditions it is ready to give up its categorical demand to return to the 1991 borders and to compromise with Russia? Clarifying this kind of flexibility may be one of the ulterior goals of this conference. But practice shows that such diplomatic conferences look first and foremost like big, big PR. Diplomacy needs silence and confidentiality. The Saudi initiative does not yet provide for this silence and confidentiality, so it is still more of a political meeting than a search for a diplomatic solution to the problem.

President Vladimir Zelensky’s peace plan will be at the center of the Saudi initiative. Within this framework, an attempt will be made to somehow find acceptable windows in which Kiev, I repeat, will be prepared to make further compromises with Moscow. But at the end of the day, everything will depend on the outcome of the military operations on the ground, which are being actively pursued. No peace plan for Ukraine can become a reality without China’s participation. The meeting in Saudi Arabia could be a precursor to a financial and economic assistance plan to rebuild Ukraine. This is how the plan to help Afghanistan began at the Bonn conference many years ago.

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Remarkable how similar his story is to Trump’s. One man vs the establishment.

Ex-Pakistani PM Imran Khan Jailed For Three Years (RT)

Former Pakistani prime minister Imran Khan was issued with a three-year jail sentence by an Islamabad court on Saturday after he was found guilty on corruption charges. The verdict means that Khan, who claims the prosecution was politically motivated, will not be able to contest elections later this year. In a pre-recorded statement released on X (formerly Twitter), Khan told his supporters: “I have only one appeal, don’t sit at home silently.” Judge Humayun Dilawar declared in court that Khan, 70, had “deliberately submitted fake details” after he was accused of illegally profiting from the sale of gifts he received while serving as Pakistan’s head of state between 2018 and 2022. After issuing the three-year custodial term, the judge also ordered Khan to be banned from politics for a period of five years.

Following the verdict, Khan, who was not in court, was arrested at his home in Lahore and taken into police custody. The claims against the former prime minister are a case of “political victimization,” according to his lawyer Intezar Hussain Panjutha. “Khan was not given an opportunity to defend himself and say his side of the story,” he said after the verdict. “We wanted to provide witnesses in his favor but he was not allowed this opportunity. Khan was not given a fair trial.” Khan’s barrister, Gohar Khan, added in comments to The Dawn newspaper that the court’s verdict had been a “murder of justice.” However, opponents of the former politician appeared to celebrate the court’s judgment outside the building, with some chanting: “Imran Khan is a thief.” More than 150 cases have been brought against Khan, the former sports star turned populist political figure, since he was ousted from office last April following a no-confidence vote. He has denied all wrongdoing.

Barring a successful appeal, Khan’s conviction means he will be prohibited from standing in Pakistan’s general elections, which are expected to take place in October or November. Khan, who had unsuccessfully called for early elections to take place, has previously stated his belief that Pakistan’s military authorities have attempted to obstruct his Tehreek-e-Insaf party from regaining political power. It’s the second time in recent months that Khan has been arrested. Around 100 paramilitary troops were involved in his detention last May in connection with one of the numerous cases against him. Khan has alleged that Pakistan’s military is responsible for attempts to subdue his political influence. He has also claimed that the United States has conspired with Pakistan’s government to prevent him from returning to political power.

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“IF YOU GO AFTER ME, I’M COMING AFTER YOU!”

DOJ Seeks Protective Order in Election Case (ET)

Justice Department special counsel Jack Smith on Aug. 4 requested the federal judge overseeing former President Donald Trump’s case to issue a “protective order” in light of a social media post made by the former president. The Aug. 4 Truth Social post by Mr. Trump said, “IF YOU GO AFTER ME, I’M COMING AFTER YOU!” Following this, Mr. Smith urged U.S. District Court Judge Tanya Chutkan to “enter a protective order governing or restricting discovery or inspection” of case details, to restrict what Mr. Trump can share publicly about the case and evidence. “Such a restriction is particularly important in this case because the defendant has previously issued public statements on social media regarding witnesses, judges, attorneys, and others associated with legal matters pending against him,” argued Mr. Smith in a filing, citing the Truth Social post.


“If the defendant were to begin issuing public posts using details—or, for example, grand jury transcripts—obtained in discovery here, it could have a harmful chilling effect on witnesses or adversely affect the fair administration of justice in this case,” Mr. Smith said, adding that such posts may influence jurors.A spokesperson for Mr. Trump responded immediately to the filing implying that the post was not a retaliation against Mr. Smith’s charges. “The Truth post cited is the definition of political speech, and was in response to the RINO, China-loving, dishonest special interest groups and Super PACs, like the ones funded by the Koch brothers and the Club for No Growth,” said the brief statement.

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“I don’t care about a link… I have a much better link,” and “I have a lot of friends in Detroit… Detroit is totally corrupt.”

A Successful Prosecution Would Fold Space And Time (Taibbi)

Special Counsel Jack Smith’s indictment is a case within a case, a prosecutorial enchilada filled with things for people of all political persuasions to hate. The outside is a shell of a conventional conspiracy prosecution, and these parts are genuinely damaging for Donald Trump. Inside, it’s a deranged authoritarian fantasy, at times reading more like a 45-page Louise Mensch tweet than an indictment. This radical core is somehow scarier than the allegations against Trump and co-conspirators like Rudy Giuliani, John Eastment, Sidney Powell, Jeffrey Clark, and Kenneth Cheeseboro. Despite early criticism describing the case as entirely about protected speech, Special Prosecutor Jack Smith’s case does focus on some overt acts, and these sections are buttressed by witnesses who could be convincing across the spectrum.

Former Arizona Speaker of the House and onetime Trump supporter Rusty Bowers will describe being asked not to certify the results by, among others, Trump and Giuliani. Ronna McDaniel, chair of the RNC, will say she was told votes by so-called “fraudulent electors” would only be deployed if election litigation was successful. Former Vice President Mike Pence, who is rumored to be running for president and took instant advantage of indictment news Tuesday, will testify Trump told him, “You’re too honest,” in response to prods to refuse to certify the outcome.

If Smith simply focused on those damaging episodes in states like Arizona, Michigan, and Georgia, or on Trump’s interactions with Pence, this prosecution would be an easier sell to the general population. Instead, Smith has tried to pen a Unified Field Theory of insurrection that would massively expand the meaning of concepts like incitement to include false statements, tweets, and other forms of protected speech, down to classic Trumpisms like “I don’t care about a link… I have a much better link,” and “I have a lot of friends in Detroit… Detroit is totally corrupt.”

In fact, if rumors are true and the four counts filed by Smith this week are later complemented by a superseding indictment, this document may end up expanding the definition of “seditious conspiracy” to include those things as well. As Adam Kinzinger said this week, he hoped additional counts will hold Trump “accountable” for all the actions of January 6th. It’s not hard to read this and see the framework of an argument that Trump’s ideas, tweets and “knowingly false statements” were elements of the same conspiracy to “violently disrupt” the election for which people like Oath Keepers Elmer Stewart Rhodes and Kelly Meggs have already been convicted and sentenced to 18 and 12 years in prison, respectively. A successful prosecution would fold space and time to make legal speech felony violence.

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Flammable.

Niger Junta Turns To Wagner For Help – Media (RT)

One of the leaders of last week’s coup in Niger has reportedly sought the assistance of Russian defense contractor Wagner Group PMC as the junta nears a deadline to either return the country’s ousted president to power or face a possible military intervention by neighboring nations. General Salifou Moody allegedly made the request during a visit to neighboring Mali, where he met with a Wagner representative, the Associated Press reported on Saturday, citing French journalist Wassim Nasr, a senior research fellow at the Soufan Center. The meeting was first reported by France 24, and Nasr said he had confirmed the talks with a French diplomat and three people familiar with the matter in Mali.

“They need (Wagner) because they will become their guarantee to hold onto power,” Nasr told the AP, claiming that Wagner is considering the request. Neither Wagner nor Russian government officials have commented on the junta’s alleged request for help from the contractor. The Kremlin said on Friday that any interference in Niger from powers outside the region wouldn’t likely improve the situation. “We continue to favor a swift return to constitutional normality without endangering human lives,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters. Wagner chief Yevgeny Prigozhin has called the coup a “justified rebellion of the people against Western exploitation.”

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has threatened to send troops into Niger if the coup leaders don’t return President Mohamed Bazoum to power by Sunday. Bazoum has been under house arrest since his ouster and has asked the US “and the entire international community” to restore his government. The militaries of several ECOWAS members, including Nigeria, have agreed on a plan for their intervention in Niger. Wagner has become a major player in the African security landscape, though it’s unclear how its influence on the continent stands after its failed mutiny against Moscow in June. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has said that the future of the contracts Wagner signed with various African countries is a matter for those client governments to decide. The firm’s troops have reportedly operated in such countries as Mali, Burkina Faso, Sudan, Mozambique and the Central African Republic.

Mali and Burkina Faso are among the ECOWAS member states that have sided with the Niger junta following the coup. Bazoum accused the two neighbors of employing “criminal Russian mercenaries.” African Freedom Institute President Franklin Nyamsi warned in an RT interview on Thursday that if ECOWAS carried out its threat to send troops into Niger, it would be seen as a declaration of war on the junta’s allies, including Mali and Burkina Faso. Such a conflict could escalate dramatically as the warring factions seek help from the world’s military superpowers, he said, adding, “We are now at the door of a world African war.”

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Wonder how the idea would work out in practice.

X to Fund Legal Bills of People ‘Unfairly Treated’ for Posts, Likes on X (Sp.)

US billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk pledged on Saturday that his social media platform, X (formerly known as Twitter), will pay legal bills of those people who were “unfairly treated” at workplaces by their employers for posts and likes on the platform. He added that there would be “no limit” to funding the bills and called on people to inform the platform of such cases. “If you were unfairly treated by your employer due to posting or liking something on this platform, we will fund your legal bill,” Musk said on X. In late October 2022, Musk finalized the $44 billion acquisition of Twitter, a US company founded in 2006 and headquartered in San Francisco, California. Twitter Corporation ceased to exist as a separate company as a result of its merger with X Corp. founded by Musk in 2006. In late July, Twitter’s logo was changed from a blue bird to a black-and-white X logo. Musk specified that the new logo symbolized “the imperfections in us all that make us unique.”

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“..the right to cash was worthless if “there won’t be a single ATM left in Austria..”

Austrian PM Proposes Constitutional ‘Right to Cash’ (Sp.)

As cashless payment methods proliferate across Europe, Austrian Prime Minister Karl Nehammer has moved to legally preserve paying in the old-fashioned way, with banknotes and coins. Speaking on Friday, the conservative Austrian leader proposed a “constitutional protection of cash as a means of payment,” saying he would direct Finance Minister Magnus Brunner and the country’s central bank to come up with a plan in the coming months to ensure a “basic supply” of cash remains in the economy. “Everyone should have the opportunity to decide freely how and with what he wants to pay,” he said. “That can be by card, by transfer, perhaps in future also with the digital euro, but also with cash. This freedom to choose must and will remain.”

“More and more people are worried that cash could be restricted as a means of payment in Austria,” Nehammer said, adding that people have a “right to cash.” Nehammer noted that his comments are in response to claims circulating on social media that the country could soon do away with cash payments, forcing customers to use bank cards or payment apps. According to the Austrian leader, €47 billion is withdrawn from ATMs every year in Austria and the average Austrian carries €102 in cash. Further, two-thirds of payments under €20 are made in cash, he said. Roughly 9.1 million people live in the Central European country, which is part of the European Union and the Eurozone.

The debate isn’t new to Austria, and Nehammer’s proposal was criticized by both left and right politicos. Philip Kucher, an MP from the Social Democratic Party, said the right to cash was worthless if “there won’t be a single ATM left in Austria,” while the right-wing Freedom Party accused the prime minister of stealing their idea. While the Eurozone nations have been increasing options for cashless payment, the European Central Bank has also committed itself to preserving cash as a payment form. The Eurosystem Cash 2030 strategy was launched in 2020. A study published by the ECB in March found that within the Eurozone, cash is still the most frequent payment method, accounting for 59% of transactions. However, 55% of consumers said they preferred cashless payments. They also found that the value of card payments had exceeded the value of cash payments for the first time, rising to 46% of transactions.

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Jun 052023
 


Rufino Tamayo Perro aullando (Howling Dog) 1960

 

Ukrainian Army’s Offensive Attempt Failed – Russian Defense Ministry (TASS)
Ukraine Lacks Weapons To Launch Counteroffensive – Zelensky Aide (RT)
Is the United States Losing Its Control of Ukraine? (Snider)
Belgium Questions Kiev About Attack Inside Russia (RT)
Biden’s Health Is A National Security Issue – Ex-White House Doctor (RT)
EU Desperate To Clamp Down On Musk’s Free Speech As ‘Disinformation’ (Marsden)
Elon Musk Uses Team DeSantis Twitter Community Notes to Undermine Trump (CTH)
American Airlines Struggles With Pilot Deficit, Grounds 150 Aircraft (ET)
What Are German Fighter Pilots Doing in China? (Spiegel)
Germany To Deploy Warships To Indo-Pacific (RT)
Lawmaker Probing J6: ‘People Of Interest’ May Have Withheld Critical Intel (JTN)
OPEC+ Countries To Perform Voluntary Production Cuts — Novak (TASS)
Wave Of Defaults Looming – Deutsche Bank (RT)
Police Omitted Folder Called ‘CIA’ From Laptop Of Assange Spy (El Pais)

 

 

Same person? Are we sure?

 

 

 

Woke Soros

 

 

 

 

Chemo

 

 

 

 

RFK Ukraine

 

 

 

 

Wokes

 

 

Website hosting Hunter Biden photo archive shut down for distributing child porn.

 

 

 

 

The start of the counteroffensive? The presence of Gerasimov in the frontline indicates Russia was not surprised.

Ukrainian Army’s Offensive Attempt Failed – Russian Defense Ministry (TASS)

The Ukrainian armed forces failed to achieve success in a large-scale offensive on five front sectors in the south Donetsk area, official spokesman of the Russian Defense Ministry Lieutenant General Igor Konashenkov said. “The adversary launched a large-scale offensive from the morning of June 4 on five sectors of the front in the south Donetsk area by bringing into action 23rd and 31st mechanized brigades from strategic reserves of the Ukrainian armed forces with support from other military units and teams,” the spokesman said. “The adversary’s objective was to break through our defense on the most vulnerable front sector, in its opinion. The enemy failed to perform its tasks and had no success,” Konashenkov noted.


The adversary used six mechanized battalions and two tank battalions, the defense ministry’s spokesman informed. “As a result of skilled and sophisticated action of the Battlegroup East, the Ukrainian armed forces lost more than 250 persons, sixteen tanks, three mechanized infantry combat vehicles and 21 combat armored vehicles,” Konashenkov stressed. He particularly noted that Chief of General Staff Army General Valery Gerasimov was at one of frontline command posts in this area.

Counter

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They will never be ready.

Ukraine Lacks Weapons To Launch Counteroffensive – Zelensky Aide (RT)

Ukraine needs more weapons and ammunition to be able to carry out a successful counteroffensive against the Russian forces, the deputy head of President Vladimir Zelensky’s office has said. In an interview with British newspaper The Times on Saturday, Igor Zhovkva was asked why the much-anticipated operation by Ukraine, aimed at retaking land lost to Russia, still hasn’t been launched. “If you want to start a successful counteroffensive you need everything at your disposal, including artillery, armored vehicles and tanks, so probably we don’t have enough,” he replied. “More weapons is the No 1 topic in each and every conversation” that Zelensky had during his numerous foreign trips over the past month, Zhovkva, who is also the Ukrainian president’s top foreign affairs adviser, stressed. “Every country knows what kind of weapons we need from them, to protect our territory, stop the rockets,” the official added.

He also suggested that Russia has intensified its missile and drone campaign across Ukraine in recent months in a bid to deter the offensive by Kiev’s troops, which was expected to begin in spring. The UK “now is one of the leading countries in showing real incentive and courage in how to really bring victory to my country,” he stated, adding that other nations need to do more to assist Kiev. “Sorry, but the European countries are still too slow and not doing enough with sanctions” against Russia, Zhovkva insisted. Zelensky told the Wall Street Journal on Saturday that the Ukrainian military was “ready” for the counteroffensive, but did not say when exactly it will start. He also pointed out that Kiev would have wanted to see more weapons provided by the West, but that “we can’t wait for months” to launch the assault. Among other things, Ukraine needs 50 US-made Patriot air defense batteries to sufficiently protect its cities and troops on the battlefield ahead of the counteroffensive, Zelensky said.

With the price of a single Patriot battery estimated at $1.1 billion, the overall cost of the demand would be around $55 billion, which is more than the total amount of American military aid allocated to Kiev since the start of the conflict. The Ukrainian leader acknowledged that Russia’s air superiority would leave Kiev’s troops exposed and “a large number of soldiers will die” during the counteroffensive. Moscow has repeatedly warned that deliveries of weapons, including sophisticated ones, to Ukraine by the US and its allies could cross “red lines,” leading to a major escalation in the hostilities. Russia argues that the provision of arms, intelligence sharing, and training to Kiev’s troops already means that Western nations are de facto parties to the conflict.

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That’s what the US would like everyone to think: We had no idea!

Is the United States Losing Its Control of Ukraine? (Snider)

In the very early days of the war in Ukraine, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky was open to negotiating a peace. A proposed peace could have ended the war before tens of thousands of Ukrainians died and Ukraine’s infrastructure was devastated, on terms that satisfied Kiev’s goals. But the United States pressured Ukraine to go on fighting in pursuit, not of Ukraine’s goals, but of larger American ones. Putting an end to Ukraine’s negotiations with Russia, State Department spokesperson Ned Price remarkably said, “This is a war that is in many ways bigger than Russia, it’s bigger than Ukraine,” and insisted that Ukrainians go on fighting and dying for “core principles.” The United States got its way. Now a year later, with the war not going well for Ukraine and the country getting more and more desperate, Ukraine is forced to retreat to pursuing its own goals.

Ironically, that is increasingly taking the form of escalating the war in a way that now endangers American goals. Ukraine is now pursing its own security interests in a way that is extraordinarily dangerous to U.S. security interests. And they seem to be disregarding U.S. restrictions in pursuing them. Months of American permissiveness and failure to say no to Ukraine at each crossing of a red line has seemingly emboldened Ukraine to ignore U.S. limits and conditions on the use of American-supplied weapons. One of the key goals of the Biden administration is to stand by Ukraine for as long as it takes to defend their sovereignty and territorial integrity. That is Joe Biden’s promise to Ukraine. But a second key goal is to avoid being drawn into a direct war between NATO and Russia.

That is Joe Biden’s promise to Americans. A recent wave of Ukrainian attacks on the territory of Russia—not Donbas or Crimea, but the internationally recognized territory of Russia—threatens that promise and threatens the security of Americans. Ukraine has long promised “not to target Russian territory with weapons provided by the West.” They recently reiterated that promise, saying British supplied long range Storm Shadow cruise missiles “will be used only within Ukrainian sovereign territory and not inside Russia,” and when they provided the United States “flat assurances” that F-16 fighter-bombers won’t be used inside Russian territory.

But Ukraine did not keep those promises. In pursuit of their goals—understandably, since the U.S. insisted they postpone those goals and go on fighting the Russian military in pursuit of American goals—they have crossed the red line of U.S. limits and conditions on the use of American-supplied weapons and struck inside Russian territory. This defiantly independent military strategy is increasing the danger that the United States and NATO could get drawn into a war with Russia.

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There are videos that show ‘Russian Volunteer Corps (RDK)’ members speaking Polish.

Belgium Questions Kiev About Attack Inside Russia (RT)

Brussels is concerned over media reports claiming that weapons it sent to Kiev were used by militants to launch incursions into Russia, several Belgian media outlets reported on Sunday, adding that the government will demand an official explanation from Ukraine on the issue. Belgian Defense Minister Ludivine Dedonder and Foreign Minister Hadja Lahbib will “contact the Ukrainian authorities and ask for clarifications,” the defense minister’s office confirmed to Belgium’s RTBF broadcaster. The documents accompanying each weapons delivery from Belgium “explicitly state” that the military equipment can only be distributed to the regular armed forces and used only to “defend” Ukrainian territory, the media added. “These weapons are therefore not authorized for isolated groups that have an internal Russian agenda,” a Belgian official told another local media outlet, Le Soir.

The Belgian media also described the ‘Freedom of Russia Legion’ and the ‘Russian Volunteer Corps (RDK)’ – two Kiev-backed militant groups that are said to be in possession of Western arms – as groups that have “neo-Nazi” members within their ranks. The RDK and the ‘Freedom of Russia Legion’ were responsible for several incursions into Russian territory in March and May 2023. Photos and videos published by the militants from their raid last month, as well as images released by the Russian Defense Ministry in the wake of the clashes with the militants, suggested that their sabotage groups made use of US and Polish armored vehicles, as well as Belgian and Czech assault rifles. The Pentagon and the US State Department expressed doubts regarding the authenticity of the images.

On Saturday, the Washington Post reported, citing sources linked to US intelligence, that the militants did use weapons and heavy equipment supplied to Kiev by their Western backers. The May raid ended up with the Russian forces killing “over 70 Ukrainian terrorists” and destroying “four armored combat vehicles, and five pickup trucks,” the Russian Defense Ministry said at that time. The incursion resulted in one civilian death and 12 injuries, according to Russian authorities. On Sunday, the two militant groups sought to launch another cross-border raid into Russia’s Belgorod Region, its governor said. The militants were “dispersed” and pushed back into Ukrainian territory, the defense ministry said later the same day.

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He was Obama’s physician too. Bet he was listened to back then.

Biden’s Health Is A National Security Issue – Ex-White House Doctor (RT)

The White House is guilty of “malpractice” for allowing President Joe Biden to seek re-election while in such a state of physical and mental decline, former White House physician and Republican Congressman Ronny Jackson has told Fox News. Biden tripped and fell while leaving the stage after a commencement ceremony at the US Air Force Academy in Colorado on Thursday. Although the White House said Biden was “fine,” and had been surprised by a sandbag on stage, video footage showed the president apparently needing directions to find his way to the podium in the first place. “I don’t wanna sound like a broken record, but I’m just going to say it again: This man’s not fit mentally or physically to be our president, and it’s a bad situation for us,” Jackson told Fox News’ Sean Hannity on Friday.

“I think his lack of physical ability and his physical decline is now starting to highlight the cognitive decline that we’ve been watching for so long now,” Jackson continued. “It’s a package that just doesn’t sell around the world, and it’s becoming a national security issue for us.”Jackson, who served as White House physician to Donald Trump and Barack Obama, has repeatedly warned about Biden’s mental health, declaring earlier this year that the 80-year-old president “doesn’t know where he’s at half the time and every day he brings us closer to an all-out war with Russia and China.” According to a recent NPR poll, 62% of Americans believe that Biden’s mental fitness is “a real concern about his ability to be president,” with 36% of Democrats and 69% of independents agreeing with this statement.

A Washington Post poll taken at the beginning of May also found that 62% of voters believe Biden to be in too poor a physical condition to serve effectively. Biden is already the oldest commander-in-chief ever to lead the US, and if elected in 2024 will be 86 years old leaving office. It “is just malpractice on part of the White House in the West Wing to allow this to be happening, for him to even be talking about running for another term,” Jackson told Hannity. “Somebody needs to be held accountable. People like Jill Biden and people that surround him and are supposed to love him and care about him, they should be doing something about this, and they should be stopping this because it’s a shame.”

Read more …

Breton: “I am the enforcer. I represent the law, which is the will of the state and the people..”

Idiot.

EU Desperate To Clamp Down On Musk’s Free Speech As ‘Disinformation’ (Marsden)

European Union officials are having a meltdown, all because Twitter CEO Elon Musk has withdrawn the platform from a “voluntary” EU code of conduct for tech firms to combat so-called “disinformation.” And they have yet to cite a single actual example of it. EU Internal Markets Commissioner Thierry Breton tweeted, “You can run, but you can’t hide,” citing a legal obligation to prevent disinformation from August. He’s basically treating Musk, a guy who builds rockets and cars in America, like an unruly schoolchild, with Brussels in the role of the principal. French Digital Minister Jean-Noel Barrot even threatened to ban Twitter from the EU in a recent interview, citing the “grave” threat of disinformation. They’re basically accusing Musk of pre-crime, like in the movie ‘Minority Report’ where Tom Cruise’s character is chased down by the state before having committed an offense.

The EU is seeking to bring the very long arm of its authoritarianism down on Musk and other private tech players – however far outside the EU they might actually be – who refuse to abide by Brussels’ “Code of Practice on Disinformation,” concocted in 2018 and revised last year. Breton is even heading to Silicon Valley to check in on them. “I am the enforcer. I represent the law, which is the will of the state and the people,” he said about his trip. Sounds like Mr. Enforcer could use a good humbling from the people he purports to represent, and what better way for it to be delivered than through Musk, who envisions Twitter as the voice of the people and a platform for truly free expression. By withdrawing from the code, Musk is just the latest example of what seems to be a trend.

Facebook’s parent company Meta has already laid off moderators. Amazon, Microsoft, Alphabet, and others have also cut into their watchdog departments, citing cost-cutting measures. Perhaps policing narratives is bad for business. You have to wonder, though – if joining this EU pact is optional, then what exactly is the big deal? It’s not like there’s any guarantee that any of the signatories are actually reducing what the EU considers as disinformation. In fact, the whole concept of top-down policing of information flow raises suspicion about the potential marginalization of views and debates that oppose the establishment narrative. According to this EU code, tech platforms like Twitter are connected with “fact-checkers, civil society, and third-party organizations with specific expertise on disinformation.” The policy document adds that platforms also must report to an EU “Code Taskforce,” monitoring their efforts. Given that any such actors would implicitly have the EU’s stamp of approval, it’s not a stretch to imagine that they could effectively end up acting as enforcers or gatekeepers of the establishment narrative.

Musk himself is no stranger to this kind of systemic collusion between state actors and platforms to the detriment of contradictory debate and free information flow. It was his own release of the Twitter Files in the wake of his acquisition of the platform that brought to light the collusion between Twitter and Western government authorities to manipulate and censor public debate over Covid-19, for example, or to coordinate on certain narratives about geopolitical competitors (like Russia) – all under the guise of fighting “disinformation.” Speaking of which, it didn’t take long after Musk’s withdrawal from the disinfo code for the EU’s vice president for values and transparency – an Orwellian title, if there ever was one – to suggest that the ultimate beneficiary of Musk’s actions in withdrawing from the code wasn’t free speech and debate, but rather Russia.

“Bye, bye birdie,” Vera Jourova said. “Twitter has chosen a hard way to comply with our digital laws. Russia’s disinformation is dangerous and it is irresponsible to leave EU’s anti-disinformation code.” Right, because all facts and analysis that don’t align with the Western agenda has to be Russian, as these folks see it. The reasoning is just a step away from proclaiming Musk to be some kind of useful idiot for Russia, despite him also being a major Pentagon contractor.

Elon BBee
https://twitter.com/i/status/1665510653384163329
https://twitter.com/i/status/1665522404766957568

Read more …

Lawyer “sundance” has a elaborate theory. Can’t say I’m overly covinced.

Elon Musk Uses Team DeSantis Twitter Community Notes to Undermine Trump (CTH)

The issue of Twitter’s financial status speaks to the motives of Musk that later surface – like his relationship with Fox News billionaire Rupert Murdoch. Once you see the connections, suddenly everything makes sense. Musk and Murdoch have intersecting interests. Elon Musk is in desperate need of revenue for his social media platform Twitter. By his own admissions, Twitter is currently in the red on an annual basis between $1.5 to $4.0 billion; that may go as high as $5 billion, depending on what happens over the next six months. Currently losing $100 million/mo, Musk is limited on how much he can pull from his other companies to support Twitter, and with $1.5 billion in debt service alone on the $12.5 billion borrowed for the Twitter purchase, Musk needs an income stream quickly.

Advertising revenue has dropped 50%. This is the motive for Musk to hire Linda Jaccarino, the former head of NBC Universal advertising, to bring urgently needed revenue to a platform currently considered too extreme for the DEI-minded corporate advertising executives. Musk is also captive to contracts with Bezos’ Amazon (AWS) and Google cloud services for platform data processing support. Those very expensive contracts – $1 billion and $2 billion respectively – do not expire until 2025. In short, Musk needs revenue. For Twitter, this reality drives his decision-making. Enter, Rupert Murdoch. Billionaire media mogul Rupert Murdoch owns Fox News, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Post and Harper Collins book publishing. Murdoch wants to control the outcome of the 2024 election and strongly supports Ron DeSantis on behalf of his Wall Street allies.

Murdoch financed DeSantis through the Harper Collins book deal, and Murdoch has turned his media outlets into advanced PR for the DeSantis campaign. The Murdoch media approach includes lengthy and friendly broadcast Fox News appearances, interviews and pundit advocacy, while the print side spins favorable stories. The Wall Street Journal and New York Post are doing the same. It is a full-court press to support DeSantis on behalf of the interests of Murdoch et al. Keep in mind, the RNC has given Fox News control over the kickoff GOP debate. Elon Musk needs money; this is not in question. Rupert Murdoch, supporting Ron DeSantis, wants control of the 2024 election outcome; also, this is not in question. These two facets form the baseline of a common interest.

Elon Musk launches the DeSantis campaign via Twitter Spaces – not accidental. Musk then uses his platform control mechanisms to amplify DeSantis and counteract the strong and visible platform support for Donald Trump. What outlet pushes the narrative that flows from the operation? Rupert Murdoch. NEW YORK POST – “Donald Trump’s 2024 election campaign’s claims are already being hit with Twitter’s new “community notes,” which fact-check or offer context to dubious posts. In May alone, Team Trump and their surrogates were slapped with community notes on at least seven occasions — and were often cited for posting flat-out lies.” Christina Pushaw is a registered foreign agent working for the DeSantis campaign. Ms. Pushaw went from working in Ukraine, for Volodymyr Zelenskyy, directly to working in Florida as Ron DeSantis’ press secretary.

Pushaw was the person who gathered the “influence operation” over the past two years on behalf of the DeSantis 2024 operation. That operation was visible in 2022, denied in 2022, then finally admitted two weeks ago. Now working for the DeSantis campaign, Christina Pushaw – a fellow traveler from the George Soros network and schooling – has organized the same type of influence campaign used in Ukraine to support Zelenskyy, only this time she is exploiting social media and specifically Twitter. This is why she spent so much time recruiting ‘influencers’ in 2021 and 2022, and even tried to deny she was doing it.

Read more …

Cause: vaxx mandates and vaxx injuries.

American Airlines Struggles With Pilot Deficit, Grounds 150 Aircraft (ET)

American Airlines, a leading carrier based in Fort Worth, is currently grappling with a significant challenge. The airline is unable to operate approximately 150 of its regional aircraft due to a persistent shortage of pilots, as revealed by CEO Robert Isom. Speaking at the Bernstein 39th Annual Strategic Decisions Conference, Isom stated, “We would deploy properly to markets that aren’t being served. We would do that today. It’s just we don’t have the pilots.” This issue arises at a time when the airline industry is witnessing a record demand for travel, particularly during the summer season. However, the capacity to meet this demand is constrained by the lack of pilots, leading to grounded planes and missed opportunities to capitalize on high ticket prices. Isom noted that the situation is more severe than the previous year when the pilot shortage began to significantly affect regional airlines as demand rebounded following the downturn caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Looking ahead, Isom shared that American Airlines expects to acquire more pilots for its regional network over the next 18 to 24 months. Once these pilots are onboard, the grounded aircraft will be reintroduced into service in a manner that is expected to generate favorable unit revenues. He stated, “American anticipates getting more pilots over the next 18 to 24 months for the regional network, and those aircraft would be put back into service in a fashion that is going to produce unit revenues that are very favorable.” However, the challenge of pilot shortage is not unique to American Airlines. The airline industry as a whole is projected to face a deficit of nearly 80,000 pilots by 2032, as per a report by Oliver Wyman.

[..] The Biden administration put pressure on airlines to require vaccines as part of a broader strategy to boost inoculation rates in the country in October 2021. “While we are still working through the details of the federal requirements, it is clear that team members who choose to remain unvaccinated will not be able to work at American Airlines,” Doug Parker, American Airlines chief executive, told employees in an Oct. 1, 2021 memo. According to a group of attorneys, doctors, and other experts—and a pilot who says his career ended due to adverse reactions from a vaccine—the Federal Aviation Administration has been breaking its own rule that states pilots should not fly after having taken medications that have been approved for less than a year, The Epoch Times reported in December 2021.

Read more …

Almost funny.

What Are German Fighter Pilots Doing in China? (Spiegel)

Bundeswehr fighter pilots usually enter retirement at 41, an age at which reflexes tend to grow duller and vision worse. Those who begin flying for the German Air Force at the age of 20 receive half of their final monthly salary as a pension once they reach 41. Most former pilots find it insufficient and look for secondary employment. The training of pilots in China began just over 10 years ago, with a former Bundeswehr pilot declaring a position at the Test Flying Academy of South Africa, which trains Chinese pilots. Sources in Berlin say the pilot did not transgress any formal restrictions with the move and point out that China at the time was not seen as an authoritarian rival. Germany was also providing official training to Chinese officers at the time. The naivete of this approach became clearer than ever last fall, when Australia arrested the American pilot Daniel Duggan.

He stands accused of having trained Chinese pilots, just like his German counterparts – allegations which Duggan denies. He is currently behind bars and may be extradited to the United States. British agencies also sounded the alarm last fall. According to a British Defense Ministry announcement, up to 30 former Royal Air Force officers are thought to have provided training to Chinese fighter pilots in the last several years. They received the princely salary of 280,000 euros each for their services. Because the pilots violated no applicable laws, London announced it would be introducing a legal reform. American investigators believe that the imprisoned pilot Duggan was recruited by the Chinese company Lode Tech, which was founded by businessman Su Bin, the son of an officer in the People’s Liberation Army. Su lived for many years in Canada, where he operated an aviation company with 80 employees.

As later became clear, he also spied on behalf of the Chinese state. Su developed a particularly keen interest in the construction blueprints for the C-17, a transport plane developed by Boeing for the U.S. military. In the summer of 2014, Su was arrested, subsequently confessing that he had spent six years secretly collecting information for China. He had been able to rely on an extensive network of contacts in the aviation industry, making it possible for him to identify particularly interesting engineers and other professionals for his handlers back in China. With the help of phishing emails, hackers employed by the state were then able to find their way into company computer networks. In total, they were able to steal 630,000 pieces of data related to the C-17.

Read more …

How did Germany become so belligerent?

Germany To Deploy Warships To Indo-Pacific (RT)

Germany will deploy two warships to the Indo-Pacific next year, Defense Minister Boris Pistorius said at an international summit on Sunday, amid ongoing regional tensions involving China and Taiwan, as well as the disputed South China Sea. In an address at the Shangri-La Dialogue security conference in Singapore on Sunday, Pistorius declared that the maritime passage, through which around 40% of Europe’s foreign trade travels, must be respected. “To this end, the German federal government sent a frigate to the Indo-Pacific in 2021, and will again, in 2024, deploy maritime assets,” Pistorius said at the conference, which was attended by many of the world’s most influential defense officials.

These assets, Pistorius said, would comprise a frigate and a supply ship – but he stressed that the maritime deployment is not being undertaken to counter actions of any specific actor in the region. “To the contrary,” he continued, “they are dedicated to the protection of the rules-based international order that we all signed up to and which we all should benefit from.” Berlin and Beijing maintain key trade links, but the deployment of the warships to the South China Sea in 2024 could potentially lead to headaches as Germany seeks to juggle its security and economic interests.

In 2021, a German warship was deployed to the region for the first time in almost two decades. Other Western countries have also increased their military presence in the area amid concerns about Beijing’s territorial objectives, particularly in relation to Taiwan. Beijing has asserted that the South China Sea is its exclusive maritime zone. However, about seven years ago, a tribunal under the terms of the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea firmly rejected Beijing’s territorial claim to the waters. Despite this, China has installed military outposts on at least three islands in the sea.

Last month, Beijing expressed its “significant displeasure” at a visit by German government minister Bettina Stark-Watzinger to Taiwan – which Beijing views as a breakaway province. China has frequently rebuked Western nations for engaging in diplomacy with leaders in Taipei, which it views as a part of its sovereign territory under the ‘One-China’ principle. On Saturday at the same conference in Singapore, Pistorius said he had “made it clear” to Beijing that he expected China to end its practice of enlisting former German military pilots to help train its own forces. This followed a report by German news magazine Spiegel on Friday, which said China had been receiving such training for years, and that security officials in Berlin were concerned that the military knowledge of German and NATO forces were being discussed.

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The only newsworthy part of the long article is at the bottom: it was all scripted.

Lawmaker Probing J6: ‘People Of Interest’ May Have Withheld Critical Intel (JTN)

Loudermilk also revealed that he is reviewing the work of the Democrat-led House Jan. 6 investigative committee that wrapped up its work last year, and has found some shocking evidence that much of its public hearings were stage managed. “We found out in the in the documents that I acquired from the Jan. 6 committee is the written script of every member of the committee. Just like you would have on a teleprompter or if you memorize a script for a movie,” he said. “And so every single aspect of their hearings was scripted for a Hollywood type of emotional appeal to the American people.”


He said Republicans now running the House administration committee are taking a different approach to elicit facts, no emotion. “We just recently had a hearing with the chief of the Capitol Police. There was nothing scripted about it,” he said. “We did have certain questions that we wanted to ask, but each member had their questions. The chief wasn’t given a script in advance. … These hearings from the January 6 Select Committee were Hollywood productions.”

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Voluntary? There’s some pressure being applied.

OPEC+ Countries To Perform Voluntary Production Cuts — Novak (TASS)

Commitments on voluntary reduction of oil production assumed by certain OPEC+ countries will be honored, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak said on the air with the Rossiya-24 TV channel. “The agreement has performance above the target lately because there is a range of counties not taking up their quotas. As regards the decisions made on voluntary reduction since May, third party source data will be available in mid-June but we see from discussions, from the exchange of opinions between heads of delegations, that these agreements are performed, including Russia performing in full scope. That is why I am confident that the reduction announced additionally since May 1 will be implemented,” Novak said. Russia will extend its voluntary oil production cut by 500,000 barrels daily until the end of December 2024, the deputy prime minister said earlier.

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The tightest Fed and ECB policy in 15 years is colliding with high leverage built upon stretched margins..”

Wave Of Defaults Looming – Deutsche Bank (RT)

A cycle of boom and bust will return this year and a wave of corporate debt defaults is imminent, particularly in the US and Europe, Deutsche Bank has warned. According to the bank’s annual study released on Wednesday, defaults by companies will become more commonplace compared with the last 20 years. Deutsche expects default rates to peak in the fourth quarter of 2024. The bank projected peak default rates to reach 9% for US high-yield debt, 11.3% for US loans, 4.4% for European high-yield bonds, and 7.3% for European loans. The estimated US loan peak default rate is a near all-time high, compared to a peak of 12% during the 2007-2008 global financial crisis and 7.7% during the dot-com bubble in the late 1990s, the study showed.

“Our cycle indicators signal a default wave is imminent,” Deutsche economists wrote. “The tightest Fed and ECB policy in 15 years is colliding with high leverage built upon stretched margins. And tactically, our US credit cycle gauge is producing its highest non-pandemic warning signal to investors, since before the GFC [Global Financial Crisis].” Strategists noted that the magnitude and length of the cycle could come as a surprise. “Although our forecasts just presume a return of the Boom Bust cycle, not a GFC-style shock,” they added.

Aggressive interest rate hikes by central banks, including the US Federal Reserve and the European Central Bank as they continue to fight runaway inflation, have raised global recession risks, Deutsche warned. The EU’s largest economy, Germany, has already entered recession. “We suspect the next recession will be the first since the US tech bubble to inflict more pain on credit markets than the real economy,” experts cautioned. “Corporate leverage is elevated. And global credit markets derive more of their revenue from manufacturing and the sale of physical goods than the real economy at large,” they concluded.

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Who cares what the judge orders?

Police Omitted Folder Called ‘CIA’ From Laptop Of Assange Spy (El Pais)

David Morales — the owner of the Spanish security company that spied on Julian Assange during his prolonged stay at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London — kept the work he did for the CIA on his laptop. It was all marked under the initials of the U.S. intelligence agency, according to a new examination of his MacBook, to which EL PAÍS has had access to. The word “CIA” appears several times on a Western Digital-branded external hard drive, on which Morales kept the projects and operations that his company — UC Global, S.L. — was contracted to deliver. Morales’ personal files, which were previously unknown to investigators, builds on the allegations and evidence that Morales — a former Spanish soldier — spied on the meetings that the WikiLeaks founder and his lawyers held at the Embassy of Ecuador to the United Kingdom, and sent that information to the U.S. intelligence agency.

These files were stored on a number of folders marked with the terms “CIA,” “Embassy” and “Videos,” along with other labels. The appearance of this new evidence has been a surprise in the case against Morales in Spain’s High Court, the Audiencia Nacional. None of these computer records previously appeared in the initial copy made by the police, when officers categorized the material seized from the security contractor when he was arrested in September 2019. All of this material was uploaded to a cloud storage system within the judicial systems, so that all parties involved in the case could review it. The arrest and indictment of Morales took place weeks after an investigation by EL PAÍS revealed the videos and audios that UC Global employees had recorded while the Australian was preparing his defense with his lawyers.

The discovery of these new clues about the CIA’s spying on the cyberactivist — who remains imprisoned in a London jail — is no accident. Assange’s lawyers found problems when downloading the records uploaded to the cloud. They managed to get Judge Santiago Pedraz — who is overseeing the case — to authorize a second copy of the material seized by the agents. A new digital document dump offered a clear picture that the police had not pieced together. Now, a report by the experts called by Assange’s lawyers credits the appearance of “a very relevant volume of material, which was not included in the original [police] copy.” Forensic analysis describes the copy of the hard drive as containing “multiple pieces of evidence.” In this second dump, the mentioned folders have appeared, including the one that UC Global labelled as “CIA.”

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David Martin

 

 


We have been going through a Long Singularity for a century and a half. To put that in context, as species, we spent 19,960 centuries making better types of stone hand axes. It isn’t surprising that it feels hard to keep up. https://www.oneusefulthing.org/p/becoming-strange-in-the-long-singularity

 

 

Mickey
https://twitter.com/i/status/1665048200149979139

 

 

Kingfisher

 

 

Duck

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Mar 302023
 
 March 30, 2023  Posted by at 9:15 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  88 Responses »


Roy Lichtenstein Woman With Flowered Hat 1963

 

Lies, Nuttery & Craziness Everywhere in America – James Howard Kunstler (USAW)
Musk, Wozniak Call For Pause In Developing ‘More Powerful’ AI Than GPT-4 (ZH)
The Government Is Fomenting Mass Hysteria (Whitehead)
Moscow Outlines Ukraine Peace Demands (RT)
Kremlin Only Sees Military Solution To Ukraine Conflict (RT)
West’s War Against Russia Is Bound To Last – Peskov (TASS)
Ukrainian Army ‘Almost Destroyed’ – Wagner Chief (RT)
Zelensky Explains Why He Won’t Withdraw From Bakhmut (RT)
Zelensky: “If They Stop Helping Us, We Will Not Win” (ZH)
Only 20% Of US Financial Aid For Ukraine Goes To Kiev, Lawmaker Says (TASS)
Kiev Discloses Its Military Spending (RT)
China Is Winning The Diplomatic Struggle Against The US (Fomenko)
Rosneft Announces Major Oil Deal In India (RT)
ASEAN Looking To Dump Dollar And Euro, Use Local Currencies (RT)
Why You Should Destroy Your Smart Phone Now (OffG)

 

 

 

 

https://twitter.com/GonzaloLira1968/status/1641143573578907656

 

 

Reset

 

 

Nap/Macgregor

 

 


Norm McDonald, 2016

 

 

EdDowd

 

 

LNP

 

 

Ron Johnson

 

 

 

 

Jim lays it out very well. Maybe because he’s an avid reader of the Automatic Earth.

Lies, Nuttery & Craziness Everywhere in America – James Howard Kunstler (USAW)

Renowned author and journalist James Howard Kunstler (JHK) has been complaining and pointing out that the American public is told one lie after another by the Lying Legacy Media (LLM), the government and the medical community. This kind of lying, according to JHK, is pure treason by all parties, from the 600 million CV19 bioweapon/vax injections, to the crumbling banking system, to the war in Ukraine. Let’s start with the genocide of the CV19vax. JHK says, “They are pretending that they didn’t cause any damage, and they are ignoring their own assembled statistics, and they don’t want to paint a realistic picture for the American public to see what the consequences were for their vaccination program. . . . I don’t think they can suppress the reality of it that much longer. There are just too many people who know too many people who have been injured or killed by the vaccines.

The basic problem is dishonesty puts you in a place of weakness, and the truth puts you in a position of strength. Eventually, if you are not being honest with yourself and the other people around you, you are going to be found out. . . . They have to keep doubling and tripling down on narratives that are manifestly untrue, and pretty soon I think people are going to be super pissed off about how all this went down.” With the banking crisis, JHK says the lie that everything is under control is going to be exposed too. JHK says, “When you are compelled to liquidate like Silicon Valley Bank, they are liquidating their assets below their supposed value and they become insolvent. I would imagine there is a great deal of damage waiting to express itself out there, and we haven’t seen much action in the derivatives racket so far, and that’s going to be a big deal when that happens because of the completely reckless contracts that are made. . . .

It’s really a bad bet, and the people taking the bet can’t pay off the bet, and the whole thing is really a disaster waiting to happen.” JHK says the so-called reset is going to happen, but not the way Klause Schwab wants it to happen. All will go extremely local, and JHK says, “Social discourse will make it all much worse.” The lies about Ukraine and the losing war started by NATO are summed up by JHK, “In retrospect, we could see why Donald Trump would want to have a phone call with Zelensky over the Biden family activities in Ukraine. . . . The whole Ukraine portfolio is just a big bag of crap. . . . Because of those activities, there is a war against the people, and that includes a war against Donald Trump. They are trying every way possible to shove him off the playing field. . . . I think it is safe to say the U.S. government is not your friend.”

In closing, JHK says, “This is an extremely socially and politically perverse period of history. . . .I grew up in the hippie period. . . .It was quite based compared to the baseless nuttery and lunacy that this country is involved in now. The fact that there has to be any debate about drag queen story hour for children is amazing. . . . That’s okay? Deliberately, demonstrable male imitation of a female. That’s supposed to be good for kids and not scare them? . . . There is a uniform craziness across the culture, and people are being asked to swallow increasingly absurd propositions. That’s where we are now. We are being asked to swallow absurd ideas one after another.”

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“Should we let machines flood our information channels with propaganda and untruth?”

My take is: instead of doing the exact same ourselves?

Musk, Wozniak Call For Pause In Developing ‘More Powerful’ AI Than GPT-4 (ZH)

Elon Musk, Steve Wozniak, AI pioneer Yoshua Bengio and others have signed an open letter calling for a six-month pause in developing new AI tools more powerful than GPT-4, the technology released earlier this month by Microsoft-backed startup OpenAI, the Wall Street Journal reports. “Contemporary AI systems are now becoming human-competitive at general tasks, and we must ask ourselves: Should we let machines flood our information channels with propaganda and untruth? Should we automate away all the jobs, including the fulfilling ones? Should we develop nonhuman minds that might eventually outnumber, outsmart, obsolete and replace us? Should we risk loss of control of our civilization? Such decisions must not be delegated to unelected tech leaders. Powerful AI systems should be developed only once we are confident that their effects will be positive and their risks will be manageable.” -futureoflife.org

“We’ve reached the point where these systems are smart enough that they can be used in ways that are dangerous for society,” said Bengio, director of the University of Montreal’s Montreal Institute for Learning Algorithms, adding “And we don’t yet understand.” Their concerns were laid out in a letter titled “Pause Giant AI Experiments: An Open Letter,” which was spearheaded by the Future of Life Institute – a nonprofit advised by Musk. “The letter doesn’t call for all AI development to halt, but urges companies to temporarily stop training systems more powerful than GPT-4, the technology released this month by Microsoft Corp.-backed startup OpenAI. That includes the next generation of OpenAI’s technology, GPT-5. OpenAI officials say they haven’t started training GPT-5. In an interview, OpenAI CEO Sam Altman said the company has long given priority to safety in development and spent more than six months doing safety tests on GPT-4 before its launch.” -WSJ

“In some sense, this is preaching to the choir,” said Altman. “We have, I think, been talking about these issues the loudest, with the most intensity, for the longest.” Goldman, meanwhile, says that up to 300 million jobs could be replaced with AI, as “two thirds of occupations could be partially automated by AI.” So-called generative AI creates original content based on human prompts – a technology which has already been implemented in Microsoft’s Bing search engine and other tools. Soon after, Google deployed a rival called Bard. Other companies, including Adobe, Salesforce and Zoom have all introduced advanced AI tools.

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24/7. Who needs AI?

The Government Is Fomenting Mass Hysteria (Whitehead)

We have become guinea pigs in a ruthlessly calculated, carefully orchestrated, chillingly cold-blooded experiment in how to control a population and advance a political agenda without much opposition from the citizenry. This is mind-control in its most sinister form. With alarming regularity, the nation is being subjected to a spate of violence that terrorizes the public, destabilizes the country, and gives the government greater justifications to crack down, lock down, and institute even more authoritarian policies for the so-called sake of national security without many objections from the citizenry. Take this latest shooting in Nashville, Tenn. The 28-year-old shooter (a clearly troubled transgender individual in possession of several military-style weapons) opened fire in a Christian elementary school, killing three children and three adults.

Already, fingers are being pointed and battle lines are being drawn. Those who want safety at all costs are clamoring for more gun control measures (if not at an outright ban on assault weapons for non-military, non-police personnel), widespread mental health screening of the general population, more threat assessments and behavioral sensing warnings, more CCTV cameras with facial recognition capabilities, more “See Something, Say Something” programs aimed at turning Americans into snitches and spies, more metal detectors and whole-body imaging devices at soft targets, more roaming squads of militarized police empowered to do random bag searches, more fusion centers to centralize and disseminate information to law enforcement agencies, and more surveillance of what Americans say and do, where they go, what they buy and how they spend their time.

This is all part of the Deep State’s master plan. Ask yourselves: why are we being bombarded with crises, distractions, fake news and reality TV politics? We’re being conditioned like lab mice to subsist on a steady diet of bread-and-circus politics and an endless spate of crises. Caught up in this “crisis of the now,” the average person has a hard time keeping up with and remembering all of the “events,” manufactured or otherwise, which occur like clockwork in order to keep us distracted, deluded, amused, and insulated from reality. As investigative journalist Mike Adams points out: “This psychological bombardment is waged primarily via the mainstream media which assaults the viewer by the hour with images of violence, war, emotions and conflict. Because the human nervous system is hard wired to focus on immediate threats accompanied by depictions of violence, mainstream media viewers have their attention and mental resources funneled into the never-ending ‘crisis of the NOW’ from which they can never have the mental breathing room to apply logic, reason or historical context.”

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“Moscow will simply not tolerate “an openly anti-Russian state, whatever its borders..”

Moscow Outlines Ukraine Peace Demands (RT)

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Galuzin has offered a ten-point list of things the government in Kiev needs to do in order for hostilities to cease. In an interview on Wednesday, Galuzin said the future of Ukraine itself will depend on how soon Kiev and its Western backers come to grips with reality. For Ukraine to bring about peace, its military forces must stand down and the West must halt all deliveries of weapons to Kiev, Galuzin told the outlet RTVI. Several other conditions he listed have been on the table since the hostilities escalated in February 2022, such as Ukraine’s demilitarization and “denazification,” a pledge to never join the EU or NATO, and the affirmation of Kiev’s non-nuclear status. Another was added in October 2022, and involves the recognition of “new territorial realities” – commonly understood to mean the decision of Kherson, Zaporozhye and the republics of Donetsk and Lugansk to join Russia.

Ensuring the protection of the Russian language and the rights of Russian-speaking citizens, as well as all other ethnic groups in Ukraine also made Galuzin’s list. Moreover, he said Ukraine needs to reopen the border with Russia and restore the legal framework of relations with Moscow and other ex-Soviet republics, which it renounced following the US-backed coup in 2014. For the first time, Moscow has demanded the lifting of all anti-Russian sanctions and the “withdrawal of claims and termination of prosecutions against Russia, its individuals and legal entities,” presumably including the recent International Criminal Court (ICC) warrants for President Vladimir Putin and the children’s rights commissioner, Maria Lvova-Belova. The last demand on Galuzin’s list was for the West to pay for the reconstruction of civilian infrastructure destroyed by Ukraine’s military since 2014.

Ukraine’s peaceful future depends on respecting the rights of its Russian population, restoring friendly relations with all neighbors, and returning to its founding principle of neutral and non-bloc status, enshrined in the 1990 declaration of independence, Galuzin said. “The future of the territories of present-day Ukraine should be determined by the inhabitants of this country themselves,” Galuzin told RTVI, noting that this includes “Ukrainians, Russians, Jews, Hungarians, Moldovans, Bulgarians, Romanians, Poles, and Greeks.” Moscow will simply not tolerate “an openly anti-Russian state, whatever its borders,” as a neighbor, said Galuzin. “Neither Russia, nor any other state, would accept this from the standpoint of security.” The “peace platform” adopted by the government in Kiev includes Russia’s total withdrawal from all territories Ukraine claims as its own, payment of reparations, and war crimes tribunals for the military and political leadership in Moscow.

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“These are politico-diplomatic or – if politico-diplomatic are currently impossible, and in the case of Ukraine, they are impossible, to our regret – through military means..”

Kremlin Only Sees Military Solution To Ukraine Conflict (RT)

There’s no political or diplomatic solution for the ongoing conflict with Ukraine at the moment, with Moscow seeking to resolve it through military means, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has said. Speaking to Russian journalists on Wednesday, Peskov reiterated Moscow’s resolve to reach its goals, which were outlined by President Vladimir Putin at the start of the military operation over a year ago. “We have repeatedly said that Russia’s goals … can be achieved in various ways. These are politico-diplomatic or – if politico-diplomatic are currently impossible, and in the case of Ukraine, they are impossible, to our regret – through military means, that is, through the special military operation,” Peskov stated. The spokesman did not provide any estimates on when exactly the ongoing conflict between Moscow and Kiev might end, re-addressing the question to the country’s Defense Ministry.

At the same time, he said the broader conflict – a “hybrid war” between Russia and its adversaries – is likely to drag on for a long time. “This confrontation with hostile states, with the unfriendly countries, this is a hybrid war that they unleashed onto our country, it’ll be there for a long time,” Peskov said. Separately, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Galuzin confirmed that the goals of Moscow in the Ukraine operation are unchanged, and reaching them is the only way to achieve a “comprehensive, just and sustainable peace in Ukraine and Europe.” They include a neutral, non-aligned status of Ukraine, Kiev dropping its plans to join NATO and the EU, confirmation of its non-nuclear status, as well as the demilitarization and denazification of the country, he explained in an interview on RTVI on Wednesday.

Apart from that, Kiev and the international community must recognize the new “territorial reality” on the ground, Galuzin stressed, apparently referring to the incorporation of the four former Ukrainian regions of Kherson and Zaporozhye, as well as of the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics into Russia following referendums held last September. Moscow has repeatedly expressed its readiness for a diplomatic solution to the ongoing hostilities, blaming the lack of any diplomatic efforts on Kiev and its Western backers, who are seeking to inflict a “strategic defeat” on Russia. “Washington, European capitals, but first of all, Washington is filled with the desire not to let, under any pretext, [Kiev] enter into peace negotiations. They simply do not let Kiev even think about it,” Peskov said earlier this month.

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“..a hybrid war that they have unleashed against our country – it is bound to last..”

West’s War Against Russia Is Bound To Last – Peskov (TASS)

Russian Presidential Spokesman Dmitry Peskov has said that Russia’s struggle with the West is a war in the broad sense and warned that it is bound to last. “If you mean, let’s say, war in a broad context – a confrontation with hostile states, with unfriendly countries, a hybrid war that they have unleashed against our country – it is bound to last. We need to stay firm, confident, self-concentrated and united around the president,” he told a news briefing on Wednesday in response to a question about how long the special military operation might take and if there was any chance it might end this year. As for progress in combat operations, Peskov said, only the authorities concerned, such as the Defense Ministry, were in a position to comment.

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“The Russian army alone will be left on the chessboard, and all other pieces will be removed..”

Ukrainian Army ‘Almost Destroyed’ – Wagner Chief (RT)

The head of the Wagner Group private military company (PMC) Evgeny Prigozhin has described Ukraine’s losses in the battle for the city of Artryomovsk as almost fatal to Kiev’s entire military. The sacrifices made by his force for the sake of Russia were worth it, he added. “As of today, the battle for Bakhmut has almost destroyed the Ukrainian army,” Prigozhin said in a statement on Wednesday, using the name by which Kiev calls the city. The clash also “gave a serious beating to PMC Wagner,” he acknowledged. He called the battle the “general engagement” of the entire conflict and said that in it Wagner troops got pitted against Ukrainian armed forces and “foreign units installed into them.”

A victory by his troops would be “a turning point” and a historic event, securing a Russian victory, Prigozhin predicted. “The Russian army alone will be left on the chessboard, and all other pieces will be removed,” he forecast. “Even if PMC Wagner is destroyed in the Bakhmut meat grinder but takes the Ukrainian army with it … it would mean that we have accomplished our historic mission.” The fight for Artyomovsk has emerged as one of the most intensive and bloody engagements of the armed conflict in Ukraine, with both sides reportedly suffering significant casualties.

Western officials said that the city poses no strategic military value, but Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky pledged to defend it as long as possible after proclaiming the city a fortress. The Ukrainian leader explained his refusal to withdraw in an interview with The Associated Press earlier this week. He claimed that if Russia were to capture Artyomovsk, his government would come under international and domestic pressure to seek peace with Moscow. “Our society will feel tired,” he told the news agency of this scenario. “Our society will push me to have compromise with them.”

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“Our society will feel tired [if the Russians gain victory in Bakhmut]” “Our society will push me to have compromise with them.”

Zelensky Explains Why He Won’t Withdraw From Bakhmut (RT)

Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky has said that if his troops were to surrender the city of Artyomovsk, known as Bakhmut in Ukraine, his government would come under domestic and international pressure to seek peace with Russia. “Our society will feel tired,” he told the Associated Press (AP) in an interview released on Wednesday. “Our society will push me to have compromise with them.” Western officials have described Artyomovsk, the scene of fierce fighting for several months, as lacking in military importance. Behind closed doors, they – along with Zelensky’s own military leadership – have reportedly urged the president to order a withdrawal, so that his forces can focus on preparing a counteroffensive with heavy weapons provided by the US and its allies.

Speaking to AP mostly in English, during what the agency described as a “morale-building journey” by train across Ukraine, Zelensky suggested that Russia would be emboldened if it were to capture Artyomovsk. Russian President Vladimir Putin would “sell this victory to the West, to his society, to China, to Iran,” he predicted. “If he will feel some blood – smell that we are weak – he will push, push, push.” “We can’t lose the steps because the war is a pie – pieces of victories. Small victories, small steps,” Zelensky added. The battle for Artyomovsk, a key logistics hub, has been one of the fiercest and bloodiest in the Ukraine conflict so far. According to media reports, Kiev has lost some of its most experienced troops while holding the city. It has also allegedly been pouring in newly conscripted, untrained soldiers, to shore up the defensive line, leading to significant casualties.

In the interview, Zelensky also complained about his lack of contact with Chinese President Xi Jinping, who visited Moscow last week. The Ukrainian leader claimed that as president he chose to “unite” the country rather than divide it. Zelensky was elected in 2019 on a promise to end ongoing hostilities in Donbass and reintegrate the then-breakaway Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics into a federalized Ukrainian state. However, while in office, he maintained the policy of his predecessor Pyotr Poroshenko by stonewalling the so-called Minsk Agreements. Poroshenko later admitted the accords were used by Kiev to buy time to rebuild its military.

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“The loss of Bakhmut would mean a political defeat, could lead to a general defeat in conflict.”

Zelensky: “If They Stop Helping Us, We Will Not Win” (ZH)

President Volodymyr Zelensky is deeply concerned over ‘Ukraine fatigue’ taking over the West, and especially among the populace of his government’s biggest supporter, funder, and weapons supplier – the United States. “The United States really understands that if they stop helping us, we will not win,” he told the AP in a fresh interview published Wednesday. Waning support has been especially noticeable among Republican voters, according to recent polls, and as we recently reviewed in an article, “The Trump, DeSantis, Tucker Effect: New Polls Show Republicans Increasingly Done With Ukraine.” He issued the words specifically in reference to the still raging battle for the strategic city of Bakhmut in the Donetsk region. Russian forces have it nearly surrounded, even as Kiev has continued to throw additional manpower and weaponry into the city’s defense at a huge cost and amid mounting casualties.

Zelensky described that the capture of Bakhmut will mean that Putin will smell weakness. According to the Ukrainian leader’s words: Speaking with The Associated Press, Zelenskyy said that if Bakhmut were to fall, Putin could “sell this victory to the West, to his society, to China, to Iran,” as leverage to push for a ceasefire deal that would see Ukraine agree to give up territory. “If he will feel some blood — smell that we are weak — he will push, push, push,” Zelensky continued.

“Our society will feel tired” if the Russians gain victory in Bakhmut, he said. “Our society will push me to have compromise with them.” Implicit in these words are perhaps a first-time admission that significant sectors of the Ukrainian population are ready for compromise and peaceful negotiations to end the war. And tellingly, CBS commentary on the AP interview included the following observation: “He appeared acutely aware of the risk that his country could see its vital support from the U.S. and Europe start to slip away as the 13-month war grinds on.” Zelensky: “The loss of Bakhmut would mean a political defeat, could lead to a general defeat in conflict.”

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“..with about 60% of this money being received by the US side itself..”

Only 20% Of US Financial Aid For Ukraine Goes To Kiev, Lawmaker Says (TASS)

Washington hands over only about 20% of financial aid allocated for Ukraine directly to Kiev, with about 60% of this money being received by the US side itself, head of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs Michael McCaul said during Committee hearing Wednesday. “Of the $113 billion appropriated across four supplementals, approximately 60% is going to American troops, American workers and modernizing American stockpiles. In fact, only 20% of the funding is going directly to the Ukrainian government in the form of direct budgetary assistance,” the lawmaker said. He pointed out that, when the Republicans gained majority in the House after mid-term elections in November last year, they made it clear that accountability would have key importance for continued aid to Ukraine. The current House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) warned last fall that the Republicans would not allow allocation of unlimited and not thoroughly justified aid to Ukraine.

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“Only 20% Of US Financial Aid For Ukraine Goes To Kiev”, and they still spend $3.5 billion a month on their military?!

Kiev Discloses Its Military Spending (RT)

Ukraine spends 130 billion hryvnia ($3.5 billion) a month on its military, Finance Minister Sergey Marchenko has revealed. The minister, who was meeting with the country’s European Business Association (EBA) on Wednesday, also disclosed that Ukraine’s budget receives 80 billion hryvnias in revenue (almost $2.2 billion) monthly. “The key task is to create conditions for financing the military,” Marchenko reportedly said while disclosing the numbers, according to EBA’s press service. He stressed it’s important to collect the anticipated taxes this year, adding that no major tax changes have been planned. Last week, the Ukrainian Parliament, the Verkhovnaya Rada, adopted a law on increasing budget spending on defense by more than $14.6 billion.

Ukraine’s Prime Minister Denis Shmygal had previously specified that the Cabinet of Ministers proposed to allocate additional funds for payments to the military, as well as the purchase of military and special equipment. According to him, the money will be allocated through the support of Western partners. While approving the 2023 draft budget last November, the parliament set aside more than a trillion hryvnias ($31 billion) to the armed forces and national security, which is 43% of all spending, or 18.2% of the country’s GDP. Ukraine’s budget deficit this year is expected to be a record $38 billion. The government plans to cover the deficit using Western foreign aid.

Last month, the US announced $12 billion in additional aid for Kiev, including a $2-billion arms package and $10 billion more to support energy costs and the Ukrainian government’s budget. According to US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, Washington has provided nearly $50 billion in support since last year, much of it devoted to weapons. Meanwhile, the European Union in February approved another €545 million ($590 million) in military aid to Ukraine, bringing its total support for Kiev’s forces to €3.6 billion ($3.8 billion). Since the beginning of war, the EU and its member states have reportedly provided €50 billion ($54 billion) in direct support to Ukraine.

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“..a potential consequence of China’s strategic partnership with Russia, down the line, could be the weakening of American influence over the EU, which Washington is trying to strengthen by fanning the flames of the Ukraine war..”

China Is Winning The Diplomatic Struggle Against The US (Fomenko)

The past few weeks have seen a comprehensive show of diplomatic force by China. Shortly after Xi Jinping completed a successful trip to Moscow, where he met with Vladimir Putin, Beijing announced it had brokered a deal to normalize relations between Saudi Arabia and Iran. The breakthrough was widely regarded as a blow to US influence in the Middle East. Then China persuaded Honduras to switch diplomatic recognition from Taiwan to Beijing, and now high-ranking Western politicians and EU officials, including French president Emmanuel Macron, European Commission President Ursula Von der Leyen and the Prime Minister of Spain Pedro Sanchez, are piling in to visit Beijing.

When viewed as a whole, the last several weeks have seen China enjoy massive diplomatic gains at the expense of the US, pouring freezing water on Washington’s attempts to isolate Beijing ‘Cold War-style’ on the global stage and on a relentless propaganda campaign steeped in negativity and fear-mongering. But in spite of it all, the reality continues to shine through that China is simply too big and too globally significant to isolate, illustrating that Biden’s strategy of creating overlapping multilateral alliances in a bid to contain Beijing, isn’t going to work. China has demonstrated that it is a superpower with the ability to steer global affairs in its own direction, a privilege which the US believed was its own exclusive entitlement. Beijing’s peace proposal for Ukraine and the Saudi-Iran normalisation deal caused a shock to the system in Washington.

Xi’s visit to Moscow in particular has brought a new balance to the dynamic around the Ukraine conflict and jeopardized hubris-led US miscalculations that it can escalate the conflict to the point of forcing a zero-sum outcome in favour of its own strategic objectives. As noted above, European leaders have responded to Xi’s visit, not by turning against China as was hoped, but by intensifying their diplomatic engagement with Beijing and scrambling to remain on board. But what is China’s response going to be? It is reasonable to expect an element of “Then stop siding with the United States against us”. Thus, a potential consequence of China’s strategic partnership with Russia, down the line, could be the weakening of American influence over the EU, which Washington is trying to strengthen by fanning the flames of the Ukraine war. Beijing is thus bringing some much-needed balance to the equation.

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“..oil purchases by New Delhi surged more than 20-fold last year..”

Rosneft Announces Major Oil Deal In India (RT)

Moscow and New Delhi have agreed to “substantially increase” the supply of crude oil to India and diversify its grades, Russian energy major Rosneft announced on Wednesday. A deal was reached with the Indian Oil Company during a trip by Rosneft CEO Igor Sechin to the Asian country, the Russian firm said in a press release on its website. Sechin also met with the heads of some of India’s largest oil and gas companies and discussed wider cooperation in the energy sector, the press release states. Possible trade settlements in national currencies were also on the agenda. Russia has for the first time become one of India’s top five trading partners, with turnover reaching $38.4 billion in 2022, according to statistics from India’s Ministry of Commerce and Industry, as cited by Rosneft.


Energy accounts for a major portion of bilateral trade. According to Russian Deputy Prime Minister Aleksandr Novak, oil purchases by New Delhi surged more than 20-fold last year. India, the world’s third-largest crude importer, began to boost purchases of Russian oil shortly after the start of Moscow’s military operation in Ukraine and the ensuing Western sanctions. New Delhi, which has repeatedly stressed that energy security is its top priority, chose not to succumb to Western pressure and continued to stock up on Russian supplies even after the G7 price cap on Russian oil came into force late last year.

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Local currencies are the future. Backed by gold?!

ASEAN Looking To Dump Dollar And Euro, Use Local Currencies (RT)

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is set to discuss dropping the US dollar, euro, yen and pound sterling from transactions and moving to settlements in local currencies, according to the news magazine Tempo. An official meeting of ASEAN finance ministers and central bank governors kicked off on Tuesday in Indonesia. A regional grouping that aims to promote economic and security cooperation among its members, ASEAN includes Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam. “Efforts to reduce dependence on major currencies through the Local Currency Transaction (LCT) scheme will be discussed. This is an extension of the previous Local Currency Settlement (LCS) scheme that has already begun to be implemented between ASEAN members,” said the report.


Tempo specified that a digital cross-border payments system, allowing ASEAN member states to use local currencies in trade, would be expanded further. An agreement on such cooperation was reached between Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, the Philippines, and Thailand in November 2022. Indonesian President Joko Widodo has urged regional authorities to abandon Visa and Mastercard payment systems and start using credit cards issued by local banks. Moving away from Western payment systems is necessary to protect transactions from “possible geopolitical repercussions,” Widodo said. Board member of the Indonesian Credit Cards Association (AKKI), Dodit Proboyakti, told RIA Novosti that Indonesia would apply the experience of Russia and its Mir payment system in promoting its own domestic financial network.

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“..within the next few years, smartphones will become the digital wallet through which the Bank of England will have complete control over how much, on what and where we spend its Central Bank Digital Currency.”

Why You Should Destroy Your Smart Phone Now (OffG)

In the imminent future, smartphones are the instrument onto which, in the guise of the digital verification of our identity — the Government’s ‘consultation’ on which closed this month — the compliant will upload their biometric data (fingerprints, photograph and DNA swab) to a centralised database to which the 32 public authorities presiding over the UK biosecurity state will have access.=

Under the Digital Economy Act 2017, these public authorities include the Cabinet Office; the Home Office; the Department for Defence; HM Treasury; the Ministry of Justice; the Department for Education; the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy; the Department for Work and Pensions; the Department for Communities and Local Government; the Department for Culture, Media and Sport; the Department for Transport; the Department for Food, Environment and Rural Affairs; Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs; all county, district and London councils; the Greater London Authority; the Council of the City of London; all fire and rescue authorities; all police authorities; all education authorities; all gas and electricity authorities; HM Land Registry; and, under Section 35, any other public authority, or private agent providing a service for a public authority, designated for a specific purpose justifying access to that data.

Smartphones are the instrument that will monitor whether their owners are up-to-date with what the UK biosecurity state decides is fully ‘vaccinated’ with whatever our Government and its partners in the pharmaceutical industry decide we must inject into our bodies as a condition of access to the rights of citizenship. Smartphones are the instrument that will monitor and record how many times we leave or enter our 15-minute grazing range currently being implemented by our public authorities to restrict and limit our freedom of movement on the justification of ‘saving the planet’.

Smart phones are the instrument that will track our carbon footprint in order to monitor and control the quantity of meat, dairy products, energy, oil, petrol and other products to which the UK biosecurity state — under the terms of the agreements of Agenda 2030 signed by the UK Government in 2015 — will progressively cut off our access between now and 2030. Smartphones are the means by which our compliance with lockdowns, masking mandates and programmes of gene therapy dictated by the World Health Organization’s Pandemic Prevention, Preparedness and Response Treaty and enforced by the UK biosecurity state will be monitored, recorded and enforced by, among other recourses, cutting off our access to the electronic and digital grid. And, within the next few years, smartphones will become the digital wallet through which the Bank of England will have complete control over how much, on what and where we spend its Central Bank Digital Currency.

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Help Joe
https://twitter.com/i/status/1640793491633586177

 

 

 

 

Levitation
https://twitter.com/i/status/1640916068955828224

 

 

Giants

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Oct 042022
 
 October 4, 2022  Posted by at 8:52 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  68 Responses »


Pablo Picasso Cafe Royan [The Coffee] 1940

 

Developing Developments (Kunstler)
The Nord Stream 2 Pipeline Sabotage (Monkeywerx)
Macgregor: US Likely Attacked Nord Stream Pipelines to Isolate Germany (SN)
In Nord Stream Attack, US Sees ‘A Tremendous Opportunity’ (Maté)
Jeffrey Sachs Offers Nord Stream Theory (RT)
Medvedev Comments On Musk’s Ukraine Proposal (RT)
Duma Ratifies Accession Treaties For Donbass, Kherson, Zaporozhye (RT)
Kremlin Comments On Borders Of New Territories (RT)
Kiev’s Counter Attacks On Kherson Have Failed – Official (RT)
British Intelligence Predicted Ukraine War 30 Years Ago (Dec.uk)
Ukraine Grain Deal Not Enough – Moscow (RT)
Belgium Suffers Unplanned Nuclear Reactor Shutdown (RT)
Ukraine Scolds EU Over Aid Delays (RT)
Truss Exposes The Inherent Instability Of Western Democracies (Hryce)
Trump Seeks $475 Million In Defamation Suit Against CNN (ZH)
Hunter Biden Probe to Look Into ‘What Happened in 2020’: Jim Jordan (ET)
The Biggest Problem China Faces Isn’t Real Estate (Balding)

 

 

Best amicus brief ever?!

 

 

Tucker regime change

 

 

 

 

Greenwald Donbass

 

 

Hey! Sanctions!

 

 

 

 

“The Russian negotiation table is open for business. Failing to report to it, Ukraine will have to decide what sort of rump state it will become — a merely half-assed agricultural backwater or a fully ass-blown-off failed state.”

Developing Developments (Kunstler)

What no government official can acknowledge — even among the Euroland victim nations of this awesome stupidity — is that the US demolition of the Nord Streams was an act-of-war against our own allies. By the way, the blogger who styles himself as “Monkey Werx,” notable for tracking the world-wide military flight movements, presents a comprehensive play-by-play of just exactly how the mission was accomplished. I’ll summarize but you can read his full report (click here) for yourself. MW reports that overnight on the 26th of September, a Navy P8 Poseidon submarine-hunter jet flew out of the US to the Baltic. It did not land in the UK to refuel — thus avoiding any tracking complications — but rather rendezvoused over Grudziadz, Poland, with a US Bart-12 mid-air refueling plane, which it hooked up with for more than an hour.

The P8 was equipped with Mk54 air-launched torpedoes. After un-docking from the Bart-12 refueler, the P8 followed a route west along the Nord Stream pipelines, descended to bomb-run altitude, and dropped its weapons. Kaboom. Then, fully refueled, the P8 flew directly back to the USA. Days later, when confronted at the UN by Russia with a yes-or-no question as to US responsibility for the Nord Stream caper, the US representatives refused to answer one way or another. Cute. So, the questions loom: How many more days before Germany and the rest of Euroland begin to apprehend how they have been hosed by America into an economic collapse scenario? (How many days before a team of competent professionals hunts down Klaus Schwab and his colleagues somewhere in Switzerland?) When will the Eurofolk turn on their idiot government leaders and flush them out of office?

When will all (except for psychotic Poland) bail out of the USA’s Ukraine crusade? I will tell you: this will all begin pretty darn soon. And if so, that will be the end of the NATO alliance. Meanwhile, the US-led propaganda campaign has Russia utterly on-the-ropes against a raging and triumphant Ukraine army. Nothing could be further from the truth. Russia made a few tactical retreats the past month in preparation for a final systematic and methodical mopping-up of the remaining Ukraine army. Russia is bringing in Iskander hypersonic missiles, not necessarily nuclear-armed, and will assemble Russian army regulars to replace the mash-up of Donbas militia volunteers who have borne the brunt on the thinly defended line leading to the much talked-about tactical retreat around the Kharkov-Izium-Lyman front. The Russian negotiation table is open for business. Failing to report to it, Ukraine will have to decide what sort of rump state it will become — a merely half-assed agricultural backwater or a fully ass-blown-off failed state.

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“..why fly an aircraft all the way from the United States and not land in the UK for refueling, but instead hook up for an hour plus with another US Air Force refueler out of Germany?”

The Nord Stream 2 Pipeline Sabotage (Monkeywerx)

As we sit here today, October 1, 2022, the United States has no official statement on the sabotage although Biden is pushing the standard doublespeak rhetoric and as they say, the best defense is a good offense. There is, however, an official release from the White House back in February 2022 that states the United States will take further action with Germany to end the Nord Stream Pipeline 2. So let’s look at the flight data logically… The United States has Navy P8’s stationed in the UK so why fly an aircraft all the way from the United States and not land in the UK for refueling, but instead hook up for an hour plus with another US Air Force refueler out of Germany? Could it be that the UK’s new Prime Minister would not condone the activity?

We have already seen her call out Nancy Pelosi who we know is a bobblehead and not in line with the New World Order, and we know the new UK PM is indeed a WEF appointee which is part of the NWO. Clearly, the United States did not want to land in the UK or anywhere else for a reason. Could it also be because it was armed with external weapons or they didn’t want any record of the aircraft in the area? Landing would create a log and even though we see them wipe the flight record data, the airport log is still intact. Let’s talk about the P8 weaponry for a minute. The Navy P8 Poseiden has 11 external hardpoints for mounting weapons as well as an internal bomb bay, and one weapon, in particular, is a High Altitude Anti-Submarine Warfare Weapon Capability (HAAWC) system. HAAWC is an all-weather add-on glide kit that enables the Mk54 torpedo to be launched near or below the cruising altitude of the P8 Poseidon.

What that means: the flight path and altitude of the P8 in question are indeed capable of conducting a “bomb run” on the Nord Stream 2 Pipeline. Now let’s look at the flight specifics. Note the last flight path just before exiting the area runs right along the pipeline in which they could have released the ordinance and continued their climb out, thus exiting the area and returning to the United States. Also, note the little hump just before the climb out (red arrow). That is consistent with a weapons release. Pitch down, increased AoA, weapon release, little bubble up, then a climb out (the blue line is the inbound leg of the same flight). You may also not the flight path. It circles over the area first, then flies downrange and starts the initial bomb run, then it does a quick readjustment on a final bomb run, releases, and exits immediately.

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“You have several inches of concrete around various metal alloys to move the natural gas. So it’s not something that you could simply drop a grenade down at the end of a fish line and disrupt. ”

Macgregor: US Likely Attacked Nord Stream Pipelines to Isolate Germany (SN)

A former Pentagon advisor says the most likely culprits behind the Nord Stream pipeline blasts are the United States and Britain, and that the attack was carried out to prevent Germany from bailing on the war in Ukraine. Retired US Army colonel Douglas Macgregor made the comments during an appearance on the Judging Freedom podcast. Macgregor said a process of elimination rules out Germany, because they are dependent on Nord Stream for their energy security, while it also served no benefit for Russia to have sabotaged its own infrastructure. “Would the Russians destroy their own pipeline? 40 percent of Russian gross national product or GDP consists of foreign currency that comes into the country to purchase natural gas, oil, coal and so forth. So the Russians did not do this. The notion that they did I think is absurd,” Macgregor said.

Referring to Polish MEP Radoslaw Sikorski’s infamous deleted tweet in which he wrote, “Thank you, USA,” Macgregor noted, “Who else might be involved? Well the Poles apparently seem to be very enthusiastic about it.” However, citing reports that more than 500 kg of TNT had been detected in both explosions, the former Pentagon advisor suggested only the United States and British Royal Navy had the capability to pull off the attack. “Then you have to look at who are the state actors that have the capability to do this. And that means the Royal Navy, the United States Navy Special Operations,” said Macgregor. “I think that’s pretty clear. We know that thousands of pounds of TNT were used because these pipelines are enormously robust. You have several inches of concrete around various metal alloys to move the natural gas. So it’s not something that you could simply drop a grenade down at the end of a fish line and disrupt. That means it takes a certain amount of sophistication,” he added.

Macgregor suggested that the motive behind the attacks was to prevent Germany from bailing on the Ukraine war after Berlin began “to give the impression that they were no longer going to go along with this proxy war in Ukraine.” “I’m hesitant to say ‘we know it must have been Washington’. I can’t say that because we just don’t know. But it’s very clear that we have foreclosed Berlin’s options. Berlin was drifting away from this alliance. [Chancellor] Olaf Scholz said ‘I’m not sending any more equipment, I won’t send any tanks’. Now he’s in a bind because the United States has simply robbed him of the option of bailing out. Who’s going to supply him gas and oil and coal and everything else if he bails out? Where does he turn now? And remember, the Germans, who are facing terrible consequences at home refuse to restart nuclear power plants,” the former official said.

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“Nord Stream 2, Trump declared in July 2018, is a “tragedy.“

In Nord Stream Attack, US Sees ‘A Tremendous Opportunity’ (Maté)

Western sanctions on Russia have already led to job losses, skyrocketing bills, and fears of energy rationing amid forecasts of exceptionally cold temperatures ahead. Just before the Nord Stream blasts, the head of German’s steel federation warned that without Russian energy, “a winter of de-industrialization threatens us in Germany.” Ahead of this feared winter of de-industrialization, Blinken’s optimistic response to a now assured shut-off of Russian gas might seem odd for a top diplomat. But it is perfectly consistent with a longstanding US effort to kill Nord Stream for good. In waging a multi-year campaign against Nord Stream, the US has sought to weaken Russia’s economy; undermine Russian integration with the rest of Europe; preserve lucrative transit fees for the US client state in Ukraine; and increase European dependence on US energy, in particular Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG).

In short, the “tremendous opportunity” that Blinken draws from the Nord Stream sabotage derives from the very goals that he imputed to Putin: “the weaponization of energy” for “imperial designs.” As one of Blinken’s predecessors, Condoleezza Rice, explained in 2014: “Over the long-run, you simply want to change the structure of energy dependence. You want to depend more on the North America energy platform.” The US drive to promote dependence on North American energy was escalated by President Donald Trump, who imposed sanctions to stop the Nord Stream 2’s construction while urging the German government to buy American LNG instead. Nord Stream 2, Trump declared in July 2018, is a “tragedy.” In his view, “it’s a horrific thing that’s being done, where you’re feeding billions and billions of dollars… primarily from Germany, into the coffers of Russia.”

Trump’s disdain for the “horrific” Russia-Germany energy project strained US relations with both countries. But because his actions contradicted the predominant Russiagate narrative that he was in fact a Kremlin asset being blackmailed to do Vladimir Putin’s bidding, the Nord Stream sanctions were among many confrontational Trump policies toward Russia that went widely ignored at home. Trump’s sanctions on Nord Stream 2 caused such a rift with Germany that Biden, upon taking office, initially waved them. But the Ukraine crisis gave Biden a backdoor opportunity to revive Trump’s quest. As Russian forces amassed on Ukraine’s borders in 2021, Biden pressured Germany to commit to cancelling Nord Stream 2 in the event of an invasion. When the Germans still refused, the White House announced that it would achieve its goal with or without them. “If Russia invades…then there will be no longer a Nord Stream 2,” Biden declared on February 7, with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz at his side. “We will bring an end to it.”

Trump NS2

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Includes Sachs’ role in the Shock Doctrine. Rarely mentioned.

Jeffrey Sachs Offers Nord Stream Theory (RT)

Economist Jeffrey Sachs speculated on Monday that the sabotage of the Nord Stream pipelines was the work of the US and maybe Poland, to the chagrin of Bloomberg TV hosts who quickly tried to change the subject. Now a professor at Columbia University, Sachs became notorious in Russia for masterminding the “shock therapy” reforms in the 1990s – but has been sharply critical of the West’s approach to the conflict in Ukraine in recent months. Invited to Bloomberg’s ‘Surveillance’ show on Monday, Sachs was asked to comment on Russia he “knew so well” under President Boris Yeltsin. Instead, the hosts scrambled to cut him off after he said the conflict is “on the path of escalation to nuclear war” and did not start in February 2022.

“Most of the world doesn’t see it the way we describe it,” Sachs told Bloomberg’s Tom Keene, at which point co-host Lisa Abramowicz tried to change the subject to inflation in Europe. The EU is in a “very sharp economic downturn,” Sachs agreed. The continent was “getting hammered” by energy shortages, made worse by “the destruction of the Nord Stream pipeline which I would bet was a US action – perhaps US and Poland,” he managed to add before Keene cut him off, asking for evidence of that claim. “Well first of all, there’s direct radar evidence that US helicopters, military helicopters that are normally based in Gdansk, were circling over this area. We also had the threats from the US, earlier in this year, that ‘one way or the other, we are going to end Nord Stream.’ We also have the remarkable statement by [US] Secretary [of State Antony] Blinken last Friday in a press conference; he says ‘this is also a tremendous opportunity.’ Sorry, it’s a strange way to talk if you’re worried about piracy on international infrastructure of vital significance,” Sachs retorted.

“I know this runs counter to our narrative, you’re not allowed to say these things in the West, but the fact of the matter is – all over the world, when I talk to people, they think the US did it,” he added. Abramowicz again tried to change the subject, saying Bloomberg couldn’t provide “counterbalance” to what he was saying. Undeterred, Sachs answered the next question by describing the current situation as “the most dangerous moment since the Cuban Missile Crisis” in 1962, with the US picking fights with both Russia and China, without any attempts to de-escalate things. Currently director of the Center for Sustainable Development at New York’s Columbia University, Sachs gained notoriety among the Russians for his “shock therapy” reforms in 1991-1993. The overhaul of the entire Soviet economy ended up destroying the lives of millions of Russians and handing the country’s wealth over to a handful of oligarchs.

Sachs
https://twitter.com/i/status/1576924480135258112

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“Musk sent hundreds of SpaceX’s Starlink satellites and terminals to Ukraine. Though their stated purpose was humanitarian, Kiev has since admitted to using them for the war effort.”

Medvedev Comments On Musk’s Ukraine Proposal (RT)

After Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky and Kiev’s online troll army savaged Elon Musk’s proposal for ending the conflict with Russia, former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev jokingly called the Tesla and SpaceX founder a “shadowy agent” of the Kremlin, comparing him to Stierlitz, the legendary fictional Soviet spy. “Kudos to [Elon Musk]! However, the shadowy agent has lost the cover. Deserves a new rank, fast. His next tweet will run like, Ukraine is an artificial state. Anticipating…” Medvedev tweeted, in English, on Monday evening. On his Telegram channel, in Russian, instead of “shadowy agent” the former president called Musk “Eustace” – a reference to the code name of the main character in the Soviet-era series ‘17 Moments of Spring,’ better known under his German alias Otto von Stierlitz.


Both references were clearly tongue-in-cheek and poked fun not at Musk, but at the utter hysterics of the Ukrainian government and its online influencers over the American billionaire’s earnest peace proposal. Crimea would remain Russian and have its water supply guaranteed, Ukraine would declare neutrality, and the four regions that just joined Russia hold UN-supervised referendums on their fate, Musk suggested earlier in the day. The poll was quickly swamped by what he called the “biggest bot attack I’ve ever seen.” It wasn’t just Kiev’s info-warriors and their Western NAFO backers, however. Ukraine’s departing ambassador to Germany used some very un-diplomatic language, while President Vladimir Zelensky himself launched a poll asking his followers if they preferred Musk who supported Ukraine over this one, who “supports Russia.” Early on in the conflict, Musk sent hundreds of SpaceX’s Starlink satellites and terminals to Ukraine. Though their stated purpose was humanitarian, Kiev has since admitted to using them for the war effort.

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Russia calmly goes through the legal moves. Important point:

“..accession to Russia is the only way to save the people living in the four former Ukrainian territories from shelling by Ukrainian troops. “The only way to end this is reunification [with Russia],”

Duma Ratifies Accession Treaties For Donbass, Kherson, Zaporozhye (RT)

The State Duma has unanimously ratified the treaties on the accession of the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics (DPR and LPR), as well as Kherson and Zaporozhye Regions, to the Russian Federation. President Vladimir Putin submitted the documents regarding the four former Ukrainian territories to the lower house of parliament on Sunday. All four voted overwhelmingly in favor of joining Russia in referendums held between September 23 and 27. Addressing legislators before the vote, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that accession will “serve the interests of all people of our multiethnic country.” He added that Kiev had oppressed Russian-speaking people, which made the existence of certain territories within the Ukrainian state impossible.


State Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin argued that accession to Russia is the only way to save the people living in the four former Ukrainian territories from shelling by Ukrainian troops. “The only way to end this is reunification [with Russia],” he said. The accession treaties, which were signed by Putin on Friday, were then approved by the Russian Constitutional Court. The next step in the accession process is ratification by the Federation Council, the upper house of Russia’s parliament. The DPR and LPR broke off from Ukraine shortly after the 2014 coup in Kiev. Russia recognized them as independent states in February.

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Kremlin is mocked in the west for not knowing exactly what they incorporated. No, because they want to be precise. To that end, Lavrov has been given special powers to negotiate borders.

Kremlin Comments On Borders Of New Territories (RT)

Moscow has yet to determine the future borders of Kherson and Zaporozhye Regions, which are set to be incorporated into Russia, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has told journalists. “We will continue to consult with the residents of those regions on the issue of borders,” the official said on Monday. The two former Ukrainian regions voted last month to break away from Kiev and request being accepted into Russia. However, parts of them are still controlled by Ukrainian troops. The issue of borders came up last week, when President Vladimir Putin signed orders recognizing the two regions’ independence. The documents did not include any reference to the demarcation of the territories. When asked by journalists for clarification, Peskov promised to give an answer later.

Further complicating the situation is the fact that Russian forces are in control of a small chunk of Ukraine’s Nikolaev Region, which borders Kherson Region. Vladimir Saldo, the head of the Kherson administration, claimed last week that the land would be incorporated into Russia. This week, the Russian parliament is scheduled to ratify the unification treaties with the two regions, as well as the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics. The latter two territories, which were recognized as independent by Russia in February, are defined “by the 2014 borders,” according to Peskov. Russian troops and Donbass militias have since seized much of the disputed land, but not all of it.

Kiev blasted the referendums that paved the way for the accession as a “sham”and reiterated its intention to defeat Russia on the battlefield and oust its troops from all land that it claims as Ukrainian. Moscow said the ballots were a legitimate exercise of the right to self-determination.

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180º different from western and Kiev stories.

Kiev’s Counter Attacks On Kherson Have Failed – Official (RT)

Attempts by Ukrainian forces to break through Russia’s defenses in Kherson Region have been thwarted, the deputy head of the local administration, Kirill Stremousov, has said. In a Telegram post on Monday, Stremousov stated that “everything is under control in the Nikolayev direction,”despite Kiev’s efforts to retake the region. He noted that Ukraine’s forces had advanced southward along the Dnieper River to the village of Dudchany before “taking a beating” from Russian Aerospace Forces. The official admitted that the Ukrainians were able to advance a little bit, but noted that the region’s defense systems were working and that “at the moment, the situation is completely under control.” Stremousov concluded by urging people not to give into panic because of what they hear and read on social media. “This is not Kharkov, this is not [Krasny] Liman, we are holding the fence,” he proclaimed.


Russia’s Defense Ministry has also confirmed repelling the attack, stating that over 400 Ukrainian servicemen, 43 tanks and 89 units of special military equipment were eliminated in the Nikolayev-Krivoy Rog area. The announcement comes as Kiev’s forces have mounted large-scale offensives along several points of engagement with Russia. On Saturday, Russian troops were forced to withdraw from their defensive positions in the town of Krasny Liman in the Donetsk People’s Republic after they were nearly encircled by Ukrainian forces, which had brought in reserves and reached a “considerable superiority in men and material.” It has been noted, however, that the Ukrainian side has been suffering significant casualties in the offensive, having reportedly lost over 500 soldiers (200 dead, 320 injured), as well as ten tanks and 25 infantry fighting vehicles during the attack on Krasny Liman, according to the Russian Defense Ministry.

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“It is not entirely clear, even to the Ukrainians, still less to the Russians, that Ukraine is a real country..”

British Intelligence Predicted Ukraine War 30 Years Ago (Dec.uk)

When British intelligence warned that Vladimir Putin was about to attack Ukraine earlier this year, the spooks’ foresight won many plaudits. Yet their prediction mirrored a scenario Whitehall had long known might unfold. In May 1992, just six months after the Soviet Union broke up, Britain’s then Prime Minister John Major was being briefed by his staff. They were concerned about a potential clash between Russia and Ukraine over Crimea. [..] Major’s foreign policy advisor and former ambassador to Moscow, Rodric Braithwaite, wrote a confidential background note that would today be considered heretical. “It is not entirely clear, even to the Ukrainians, still less to the Russians, that Ukraine is a real country,” Braithwaite noted. “Hence the tensions between the two.”

Braithwaite, who went on to chair the Joint Intelligence Committee later in 1992, gave the Prime Minister a potted history of the region, stretching back to the middle ages. He highlighted the “artificial famine which [Soviet leader Joseph] Stalin imposed on the Ukraine in 1930-31, when many millions of peasants were deported or starved to death.” “So it was not surprising then very many Ukrainians greeted the Germans as liberators in 1941, and that large numbers agreed to join the German army”, Braithwaite reasoned, referring to Nazi collaborators during World War II. Although these resistance groups were ultimately defeated by Stalin, Ukrainian nationalism survived as a political movement. “Throughout 1990 the number and size of popular demonstrations for independence swelled,” Braithwaite noted, adding that Russia looked like an “empire” to Ukrainians.

On the other hand, he said: “Russians would simply not recognise the picture. For Russians, the Ukraine is an integral part of Russia, its history and its culture. The Ukrainian language is no more than a dialect”. He went on: “I have not met a single Russian, even among the most sophisticated, who really believes that the Ukraine is now permanently severed from the motherland.” In a candid remark, Braithwaite said: “The Ukrainians know that. They also know that Ukraine itself is divided: between the ultra-nationalist…Western Ukraine…and the East which is predominantly inhabited by ethnic Russians.”

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“In the second half of 2022 we will be able to export up to 30 million tons. This is exactly the volume that we promised within the framework of our agreements with the UN to solve the problem of world hunger..”

Ukraine Grain Deal Not Enough – Moscow (RT)

The deal that unblocked Ukrainian grain exports is not enough to help poor nations put food on the table, Russian Agriculture Minister Dmitry Patrushev said in an interview with RBK news, published on Monday. “As part of this deal, about 4.6 million tons of agro-industrial products were exported from Ukrainian ports. The main product, a little less than half, was corn, about 1.2 million tons was wheat. Of course, this cannot cover the needs of starving countries, including the need for grain. In fact, it is merely a variation in the global market,” the minister stated. Russian Deputy Prime Minister Viktoria Abramchenko recently said that, according to estimations, the global grain market is about 800 million tons.

Patrushev also noted that the main recipients of Ukrainian grain are European countries, which “are not countries that really need it.” The official explained that Russian agricultural products could make a difference, but there are still restrains, which need to be overcome. “There are still barriers that continue to hold back our exports. If we call things by their proper names – these are hidden sanctions on the transportation of [Russian] products… Primarily, it is the limited availability of ships. International logistics companies prefer not to work with our exporters,” the minister explained. He also noted, however, that the problems are being worked out with exporters, and Russian companies which have their own fleet have fewer problems in that area.

According to Patrushev, since the beginning of the agricultural year which stared on July 1, Russia has already delivered about 8.3 million tons of grain to foreign markets, “and the growth rate of exports is increasing every day.” “This season we see an opportunity to supply no less, and maybe even more than 50 million tons of grain to the world market. In the second half of 2022 we will be able to export up to 30 million tons. This is exactly the volume that we promised within the framework of our agreements with the UN to solve the problem of world hunger,” the minister said.

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When it rains.

Belgium Suffers Unplanned Nuclear Reactor Shutdown (RT)

One of Belgium’s six functioning nuclear reactors has shut down unexpectedly, the plant’s operator Engie told VRT News on Monday. The reactor, called Tihange 3, underwent an automatic shutdown at around 8:25am local time at which point “employees then brought the power plant into a safe condition,” the company said. The reasons for the stoppage are unclear but an investigation into the incident has been launched. According to local media, the unexpected shutdown of a reactor that provided 1,038 megawatts of electricity to Belgium would not jeopardize the country’s energy supply. Belgium shut down one of the reactors at its Doel plant “for good” just over a week ago, following through on long-held plans to dismantle its nuclear energy infrastructure even as the EU finds itself in an energy crisis.

Electrabel, which runs the Doel plant, explained that the company was merely fulfilling a 2003 agreement to enact a “gradual phase-out of nuclear energy for industrial electricity production.” Belgium’s reactors had previously supplied half of the country’s electricity needs. All were due to close by 2025 until the government signed a tentative agreement with Electrabel in March to potentially extend the life of the two newest reactors by ten years. This came amid concern about the country’s increasing dependence on fossil fuels, especially from Russia. The unexpectedly stricken Tihange 3 thus had its demise postponed until 2035, as did another reactor at the Doel plant. However, the deal is not binding and efforts to similarly extend the life of the neighboring Tihange 2 reactor past its planned shutdown date of February 1, 2023 were rebuffed in July.

The Belgian government has stressed that clinging to its once-scorned nuclear energy capacity in the EU’s time of need should not be seen as discarding its commitment to renewable energy. At the same time as it revealed the draft agreement to keep Tihange 3 and Doel 4 operational until 2035, it announced a €1.1 billion ($1.2 billion) investment in wind, hydrogen, and solar energy “to give a boost to the transition to climate neutrality.” The investment will also pay for small modular nuclear reactors. As early as 2007, Belgian scientists were warning that closing the country’s nuclear plants would double the price of energy, harm the country’s energy independence, and increase its reliance on fossil fuels. Costs are already at or near record highs across the EU due to sanctions on Russian energy, a situation exacerbated by last week’s alleged sabotage of the Nord Stream pipeline that had previously carried Russian gas to Europe.

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Bite the hand.

Ukraine Scolds EU Over Aid Delays (RT)

Delays in economic aid from the European Union to Ukraine are “unacceptable” and must be resolved to avert disaster, a senior Ukranian official warned, pointing to massive budget shortfalls as the EU approved another $4.9 billion (€5 billion) assistance package. Speaking to Politico on Monday, a top economic adviser to Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky, Oleg Ustenko, slammed the European bloc after it agreed to send another tranche of aid between mid-October and the end of the year, insisting his country’s needs must be met sooner. “Our minister of finance is under extreme high pressure, when he sends these checks to the military, to pension funds … we have to have this money in his hands. So something like one week or several weeks’ delay is just not acceptable,” Ustenko told the outlet.

While the EU initially approved $8.8 billion (€9 billion) in assistance last May, only a small fraction of that has been sent so far. The latest move would break up a $4.9 billion (€5 billion) payment into three installments to be transferred before the end of 2022, though the rest of the original package likely won’t be sent until next year. Monday’s agreement followed months of debate between EU member states over the exact form the aid should take, with Germany arguing in favor of grants instead of loans. Berlin has accepted a plan to provide the latest $4.9 billion as a loan, but the body has yet to reach a consensus on the remaining funds. Ukraine has heavily relied on foreign aid since Russia’s attack commenced in February, with the country’s economic output taking a massive hit of up to 40% this year and the government facing a budget gap of some $5 billion per month.

While the United States has raced to inject cash into Ukraine, approving some $20 billion in economic and humanitarian assistance alone, the EU has been more hesitant, instead sending a little over $13 billion between all of its members, according to an aid tracking tool created by the Kiel Institute. American weapons transfers to Kiev have also dwarfed those of Europe by nearly ten-fold. Washington has reportedly noticed the disparity, with US officials recently telling Bloomberg that the Joe Biden administration “has pressed Europe to do more” to support Ukraine and take on “more burden sharing.” Talks on future aid from the EU will be held at an upcoming meeting in the German capital later this month, where Ustenko voiced hopes that member states will be convinced to speed up the process, saying “Berlin is going to be just the next step of these discussions.”

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UK is especially unstable. She has, what, two more weeks?

Truss Exposes The Inherent Instability Of Western Democracies (Hryce)

Even fervent believers in the stability of Western democracies must surely have had their faith shaken last week by the extraordinary economic and political crises created by the newly-minted UK prime minister, Liz Truss. In the week after the prime minister’s hand-picked chancellor, Kwasi Kwarteng, handed down a ‘mini-budget’ on September 23, the English pound crashed; the government bond market took a dive; interest and mortgage rates rose; some mortgage markets shut down; the Bank of England staged a highly unusual fiscal intervention to prevent the collapse of major pension funds; and the IMF criticized Truss in a manner usually reserved for the leaders of debt-ridden banana republics. The global importance of these events and the ongoing economic and political disruption that they will inevitably cause should not be underestimated.

Political commentator Alastair Campbell, formerly Tony Blair’s chief of staff, accurately described last week as “the week that everything changed.” Quite simply, the fact that the Truss mini-budget provided for billions of pounds worth of unfunded and uncosted tax cuts – including, most provocatively, a cut in the 45% top level income tax rate – caused the financial markets to register a serious vote of no confidence in the Truss government, with all the attendant consequences that followed. Incidentally, the events of last week show where real power ultimately lies in the West – and it is definitely not with politicians. Truss’s mini-budget is, of course, a product of the crude neo-liberal economic ideology that she so fanatically believes in, and which proved decisive in attracting the 80,000 or so Thatcher-worshipping members of the Tory party that anointed Truss prime minister only a few weeks ago.

Faced with an economic disaster entirely of her own making – one of her first acts as prime minister was to sack the head of the Treasury – Truss simply doubled down, and retreated petulantly to her Downing Street bunker. She did emerge briefly late last week to do a round of disastrous radio interviews with regional BBC stations – in which Truss continued to robotically tout the benefits of ‘trickle-down economics’, and (unsuccessfully) tried to blame the economic crisis entirely on Russian President Vladimir Putin and the conflict in Ukraine. Not surprisingly, the vast majority of commentators in the UK – irrespective of their political affiliations – have been strongly critical of the Truss mini-budget and the prime minister herself. Even Daily Telegraph columnist Ambrose Evans-Pritchard accused Truss of having “embarked on a course of sheer madness.”

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The Nic Sandmann case may have opened some venues.

Trump Seeks $475 Million In Defamation Suit Against CNN (ZH)

Former President Donald Trump filed a lawsuit against CNN tonight, claiming the so-called news outlet defamed him in an effort to reduce his chances of running for president again in 2024. The suit, which was filed Monday in U.S. District Court in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, alleges Trump has been a “long-time critic” of CNN, “not because CNN does a bad job of reporting the news, but because CNN seeks to create the news.” “CNN’s campaign of dissuasion in the form of libel and slander against the Plaintiff has only escalated in recent months as CNN fears the Plaintiff will run for president in 2024,” the suit reads. “As a part of its concerted effort to tilt the political balance to the Left, CNN has tried to taint the Plaintiff with a series of ever-more scandalous, false, and defamatory labels of ‘racist,’ ‘Russian lackey,’ ‘insurrectionist,’ and ultimately ‘Hitler.’”

Trump seeks $475 million in punitive damages, alleging that CNN “has sought to use its massive influence – purportedly as a ‘trusted’ news source – to defame the Plaintiff in the minds of its viewers and readers for the purpose of defeating him politically, culminating in CNN claiming credit for ‘[getting] Trump out’ in the 2020 presidential election.” The former president notified the outlet in July of his intention to sue for “repeated defamatory statements.” Trump also warned he would sue other outlets he alleges have “defamed and defrauded the public” about the 2020 presidential election results.

As a reminder, Trump had a lawsuit against 2016 Democratic rival Hillary Clinton and former top FBI officials tossed in early September by U.S. District Judge Donald Middlebrooks, who said Trump was “seeking to flaunt a two-hundred-page political manifesto outlining his grievances against those that have opposed him, and this Court is not the appropriate forum.” That is “a high legal bar to clear given First Amendment protections granted to the free press under the Constitution,” according to The Hill. “The New York Times, for example, has not lost a defamation case in more than 50 years.” However, as JustTheNews reports, winning such a case is not impossible, however. Covington Catholic High School student Nick Sandmann successfully secured considerable financial settlements from both CNN and the Washington Post for their coverage of a controversy that suggested the high schooler instigated a confrontation with an Indian activist.

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“51 former intelligence officials signed a letter..”

Hunter Biden Probe to Look Into ‘What Happened in 2020’: Jim Jordan (ET)

If the GOP takes a majority in the House, one of the “key elements” of its investigatory plans into Hunter Biden, the son of President Joe Biden, next year will involve looking into “what happened in 2020,” said Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio). Just weeks before the 2020 presidential election, the New York Post ran a story about Hunter Biden’s overseas business dealings in Ukraine and China, which was promptly dismissed as dubious by mainstream media outlets and suppressed on social media platforms. At the time, 51 former intelligence officials signed a letter claiming that the New York Post’s story had “all the classic earmarks of a Russian information operation.” In an interview with Breitbart, Jordan said that he wants to know on what intelligence the 51 former officials based their letter.

“We had 51 former intelligence officials tell us that this was Russian disinformation. We had the FBI sit down with Facebook and say, ‘Hey, be careful, wink wink. We think there’s Russian disinformation.’ … All that was done to suppress that story, which had an impact on how people voted in the most important election we have, the election for president of the United States,” Jordan told Breitbart. “Did someone from The New York Times tell them something? Did someone from the FBI leak some false—was it this Timothy Thibault, who [has] since left the FBI, who suppressed that information at the FBI? I want to know. That’s pretty important stuff, so I really want to look into that angle.”

Most of the investigative activities related to Hunter Biden would be headquartered at the Oversight Committee, with Rep. James Comer (R-Ky.) expected to lead it. Jordan will continue to remain a member and chair of the Judiciary. Comer plans to look into Hunter Biden’s suspicious banking and business transactions, he added.

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They cannot have a real weight in a reserve currency basket. Not when Xi can devalue by 50% tomorrow morning just because he’s constipated. Nobody wants the yuan, including the Chinese.

The Biggest Problem China Faces Isn’t Real Estate (Balding)

After it joined the World Trade Organization in 2000 and anchored the Chinese yuan (a.k.a. renminbi) to the U.S. dollar, China linked its economy to the United States. Enforcing a fixed exchange rate regime with strict capital controls, China benefited from large inflows and relatively low-interest rates due largely to the low-interest rate environment in the United States. What happens to the Chinese economy when interest rates increase in the United States? Sovereign currency policy faces the intractable dilemma of what economists call the “impossible trinity.” Countries can have a fixed exchange rate, free capital flow, or sovereign monetary policy but must choose only two of three. Economics textbooks give clean and clear definitions of each. Still, in reality, China tried to manipulate each and come out worse due to its attempts to manipulate the laws of economics.

Chinese Communist Party (CCP) technocrats attempted to create a system where they could enjoy the best of the three options and leave behind the worst parts. China implemented a quasi-fixed exchange rate, which is effectively a U.S. dollar index, with tightly controlled capital flows, and a semi-sovereign monetary policy. What almost no one noticed with the convoluted creation of Chinese currency policy attempting to adhere to the ‘impossible trinity’ was that for the last 20 years, China benefited from business cycle synchronization with the United States. Because the yuan was tied directly to the U.S. dollar and the United States kept interest rates low, China could keep its interest rates low. Now that the Federal Reserve (Fed) is raising interest rates, what impact will this have on China?

First, the days of easy money flows to China are over. For large parts of the last 20 years, Chinese interest rates were 3-5 percent higher than the United States. With either a fixed or semi-fixed exchange rate, this gave investors in China access to easy higher returns. With portfolio returns and foreign direct investment based upon interest rate differentials between the United States and China, this drew investor capital with fixed or heavily managed exchange rates creating easy returns. Investors have soured on China as an investment destination for a range of reasons. But when baseline returns are higher in U.S. government debt without any of the China issues, the financial motivation will dry up the biggest reason to send money.

Second, this will place enormous upward pressure on Chinese interest rates right as China’s economy is teetering. For most of the period since 2000, the Chinese and U.S. economies have been highly correlated. This allowed Chinese interest rates to follow the United States and enjoy a sustained period of low-cost money. However, now as the Fed is seeking to tamp down inflation and overheated demand, China is suffering through its weakest economy in probably post-opening up history.

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The atlas moth has wings that mimick two cobras watching her back.

 

 

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Feb 092022
 


René Magritte L’éternité 1935

 

The Pentagon’s Response To The DEMD Data Is An Even Bigger Story (Blaze)
Pfizer Quietly Adds Language Warning On Data (ZH)
Let The Re-Writing Of Covid History Begin? (Rossini)
Joe Rogan Shows Us The Real Purpose Of Cancel Culture (OffG)
The Blue Stack Strikes Back (Jilani)
First Canadian Provinces Scrap Covid Mandates (RT)
Towing Companies Refuse to Move Freedom Convoy Trucks (TC)
Johnson & Johnson Stops Covid-19 Vaccine Production (RT)
Americans Have ‘Lost Touch With Reality’ – Russia (RT)
Scientists Divulge Easy Way To Lose Weight (RT)
Elon Musk Gives Views On ‘Traditional’ Media (RT)
Lithium Price Rockets Nearly 500% In A Year (G.)
Jeff Bezos’ Yacht Can Count On Rotten Eggs (Engelen)

 

 

Jerrycans
https://twitter.com/i/status/1491204379294277632

 

 

 

 

India’s ambassador

 

 

 

 

Calgary police officer

 

 

She loves school

 

 

Why the changes when you know Renz has all the files?

The Pentagon’s Response To The DEMD Data Is An Even Bigger Story (Blaze)

One thing is clear about the revelation of the 2021 military epidemiological data and the military’s response to it: There is undoubtedly a public health and national security crisis in the military, and the Pentagon’s reaction only seems to be concerned with exonerating the vaccine, not fixing its own alleged problem. It’s now certain that the military’s health surveillance system — DMED — showed a massive increase in sickness and injury diagnoses in 2021 over previous years, particularly in the neurological, cardiovascular, oncological, and reproductive health categories. The military, in a very terse and cryptic statement to PolitiFact last week, admitted as much, but claimed without any further explanation that the data in the system accessed by several military doctors working with attorney Thomas Renz was only a “fraction” of the true numbers that existed. In the words of the Pentagon spokesman, it was a “glitch in the database.”

Where those true numbers existed, why they weren’t in the system for five years, what exactly was in the system, and why the 2021 numbers were accurate according to the DOD account remain a mystery. However, one by one, the military public health officials have been adding back random numbers to the 2016 through 2020 codes. I’m told by Renz and two of the whistleblowers that throughout the past week, they have queried the same data again, and in most of the ICD categories, they have found that the numbers from 2016 through 2020 were “increased” exponentially to look as though 2021 was not an abnormal year. This has been done without any transparency, any press release, any statement of narrative, and sloppily in a way that makes the already unbelievable narrative simply impossible to believe.

In addition to believing that every epidemiological report for five years was somehow completely tainted with false data — including during the first year of the pandemic itself — we would have to believe that the minute they discovered this from Renz, they suddenly discovered the exact numbers. A five-year mistake fixed overnight! Just take a look at the following statement given to the Epoch Times, the only other public comment delivered by an authorized Pentagon spokesman: “Comparing the DMED database to the source data contained in DMSS, AFHSD discovered that the total number of medical diagnoses from 2016-2020 that were accessible in DMED represented only a small fraction of actual medical diagnoses for those years. In contrast, the 2021 total number of medical diagnoses were up to date in DMED. Comparison of 2021 to 2016-2020 resulted in the appearance of significant increased occurrence of all medical diagnoses in 2021 because of the under-reported data for 2016-2020. AFHSD has taken DMED offline to identify and correct the root-cause of the data corruption,” said Maj. Charlie Dietz.

That’s it! They are only concerned with downplaying any potential culpability of the vaccine, not explaining how they were flying blind, according to their official narrative, on such an important endeavor for so many years. Just consider the fact that at last week’s meeting of the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), officials revealed that they have been monitoring vaccine safety data from the DOD, among other places.

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Full immunity, but not from investors.

Pfizer Quietly Adds Language Warning On Data (ZH)

Two weeks ago, the FDA begged a Texas judge to delay production on the first monthly batch of 55,000 pages of Covid-19 vaccine data submitted to the agency by Pfizer. Originally, the agency was set to produce just 500 pages-per-month. Now, Pfizer – which just forecast $54 billion in Covid-related sales in 2022, appears to be anticipating some bad news, as evidenced by several redline changes in their Q4 earnings releases. As Rubicon Capital’s Kelly Brown notes on Twitter, the changes center around disclosures of unfavorable safety data. For example, in Q4 they added: “or further information regarding the quality of pre-clinical, clinical or safety data, including by audit or inspection.”

More from Brown, who notes that Pfizer is now highlighting “concerns about clinical data integrity…” The company also notes that Covid-19 may “diminish in severity or prevalence, or disappear entirely.”

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“Truth and Liberty go hand-in-hand; as do lies and tyranny.”

Let The Re-Writing Of Covid History Begin? (Rossini)

It took much too long, but it appears that the tide of public opinion has finally turned. The term “trust the science” has suddenly lost its luster, especially when it comes from the mouth of a politician or so-called “expert.” The meanings of the words “science” and “expert” have been blown to pieces. But such is always the case when politicians get involved in things they shouldn’t be involved in. They have an uncanny ability of destroying everything they touch. Well, they touched the words “science” and “expert” and made them completely unrecognizable. I’ve heard the phrase “You can’t tell what’s true anymore” more than enough times over the last several years. We’ve all had a front row seat in what a so-called “post-truth” world looks like — It looks like totalitarian tyranny! Truth and Liberty go hand-in-hand; as do lies and tyranny.

Miraculously, as public opinion has changed, so has the “science”! Imagine that. The “science” now says that masks, lockdowns, and mandates are bad. If only the “science” crystal ball had said such things two years ago! Imagine all the pain, suffering and death that could have been avoided. One must also wonder, if public opinion didn’t change, would the “science” have remained unchanged as well? Who knows? But as the tyranny is (reluctantly) peeled away, the predictable re-writing of history has begun. Think of the Iraq War as an analogy for what you should expect going forward. The mania of lies and smears that led up to that failed war was deafening. Now think about today… How many people actually admit to supporting the Iraq War? Roughly… You can probably count them on one hand. Very (very) few people. Only the hard-core warmongers will admit to it.

Well, as Covid “history” is fabricated and branded into digital ink, you can be sure to see the same behavior from the lying class. Denial, followed by more denial: “I never supported the wearing of masks.” “I was always against lockdowns.” “Vaccine passports? What do you think I am, some kind of Nazi?” Be prepared, because just as people will not admit that they supported the Iraq War, so will they start changing their tunes about being petty dictators for a solid two years. The blame will also be offloaded onto a fictional collective. Be prepared to see the word “we” over and over: “We” should have known better. “We” made mistakes. “We” need to do a better job. The government needs more money. “We” thought that the masks, lockdowns & “vaccines” would work.

Tucker More & more people dying in the prime of life

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“Far more likely is that it was created and deployed to discredit Rogan’s COVID-questioning without having to engage with the Covid sceptic evidence or arguments.”

Joe Rogan Shows Us The Real Purpose Of Cancel Culture (OffG)

Joe Rogan has just been cancelled. Again. It’s not about covid “misinformation” this time. No, now he’s a racist. Some enterprising young mind combed through 13 years and hundreds of episodes of The Joe Rogan Experience, and cut together around twenty instances of Rogan using “the n-word”. This video was shared by award-winning musician India Arie, and used to explain her pulling her music from Spotify’s platform in protest of Rogan’s continued presence there. Rogan claims that these clips are all taken out of context in his recent apology video, and none were ever intended to be racist. This may well be true…we can’t check for ourselves, because Spotify removed all the episodes. These important bits of context were, naturally, removed from the viral video. Besides, it has since been said that context doesn’t even matter.

And you know what, they’re right. The context doesn’t matter, perhaps the intention doesn’t even matter, what matters is “Why now?” Some of these clips are over twelve years old, and yet there have never been any calls to boycott Spotify or cancel his show until just the last couple of days. Were they not racist before? Or was everyone just OK with the racism? Could there be something else behind this? …but why bother pausing the hate-fest to ask questions, right? The only message that matters is – Joe Rogan is a racist now, and streaming giant Spotify have pulled over seventy episodes of his show from their platform as a result. Of course the cyber-torches and internet-pitchforks coming for Joe Rogan is nothing new. Having preached the tenets of a healthy lifestyle, promoted alternate Covid treatments, and invited dissenting experts onto his show, Rogan has obviously been on the establishment’s hit list for a while.

[..] Rogan’s uses of “the n-word” are not new. They are all several years old and from 23 separate episodes, all multiple hours long. And there are almost 1800 episodes of the show to plough through if you decide to go searching. So making this video is at least two days’ work of simply watching the episodes – and that’s assuming you know where to start looking. And that’s before editing or trying to make it “go viral”. Was all this done on a whim by some bored pro-vaxxer? Does that sound likely? Far more likely is that it was created and deployed to discredit Rogan’s COVID-questioning without having to engage with the Covid sceptic evidence or arguments. It’s even possible the video may even have already existed before the current controversy. After all, why create this climate of stifling sensitivity if you don’t have the tools to use it?

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“It’s designed to look like they’re doing something, but they’re not doing anything. It’s more spectacle than substance.”

The Blue Stack Strikes Back (Jilani)

[..]The U.S. government, forbidden by contemporary constitutional law from simply censoring Rogan itself, dispatched Surgeon General Vivek Murthy to reinforce President Joe Biden’s message imparted last year that social media platforms are “killing people” by allowing too much freedom of speech about the pandemic, the virus, and the vaccines. “People have a right to make their own decisions, but they also have a right to accurate information to make that decision with,” Murthy told MSNBC. “This is not just about what the government can do,” he coyly noted, “this is about companies and individuals recognizing that the only way we get past misinformation is if we are careful about what we say and use the power that we have to limit the spread of misinformation.”

Murthy’s message reinforced the media outlets that had taken aim at Rogan, inspiring a wave of new reports not only focused on his discussions of COVID but also labeling him problematic in other regards. The Daily Show’s Trevor Noah, whose role in this ecosystem is to disguise Democratic Party talking points as humor, criticized a segment in which Rogan and author Jordan Peterson poke fun at the absurdity of modern racial categorization, noting that nobody is actually “white” or “Black.” CNN signal boosted Noah’s criticism, as did a range of other outlets. Other activists found old clips of Rogan mentioning (but not using) racial slurs. Eventually, Spotify got the message. It announced new platform rules that include adding advisories to select content dealing with COVID.

It began deleting dozens of older Rogan episodes that contained transgressive content. Its CEO promised to devote $100 million of company money on content from “historically marginalized groups,” which in this case is likely to be defined exclusively by progressive activists (don’t expect a lot of sponsored podcasts on Asian American opposition to racial preferences in college admissions). In the span of a week, Rogan posted two separate apologies for his past content. The authors of the open letter that initiated the firestorm, however, are not satisfied. One of them told Rolling Stone that the Spotify advisories will just create a “‘false balance’ problem. It’s designed to look like they’re doing something, but they’re not doing anything. It’s more spectacle than substance.”

These activists know how to play the game. If you look back at any of the recent controversies over free speech—from QAnon to COVID to the last two presidential elections—this is how things work when a development or outcome is seen as unfavorable or undesirable by the favored political camp. First, activists create a panic about misinformation or offensive speech. Second, the social media platforms try to meet them halfway by introducing measures like warning labels. Third, the activists realize they’ve drawn blood, and continue to push for outright censorship. Finally, the social media platforms give in and remove the offending voice from their platforms altogether.

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Nothing much changed so far.

“Kenney just says he won’t bring back the vaccine passport “Unless we redefine full vaccination as having three shots”. Kenney said that “would make practical sense… make a requirement that people get a third shot.”

First Canadian Provinces Scrap Covid Mandates (RT)

Canada’s province of Saskatchewan announced on Tuesday it would stop requiring vaccine passes and masks. It comes as Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau insisted on the effectiveness of Covid-19 mandates amid trucker protests gripping the capital Ottawa. The prairie province, situated between Alberta and Manitoba, said it would stop requiring vaccine passports from next week and allow the mask mandate to expire at the end of February. It is one of the first Canadian provinces to offer a roadmap to ending the virus restrictions. Praising the soon-to-be-phased-out restrictions for helping to stem the spread of the virus, Premier Scott Moe, however, noted that they had created “two classes of citizens,” arguing that “the benefits of this policy no longer outweigh the costs.”

Urging Canadians not to “judge” their neighbors over their vaccination status, Moe said people should be entitled to decide whether to get vaccinated or not. “This government is going to respect that right,” he added. Another province, Alberta, also moved to ditch the restrictions on Tuesday. From midnight on Wednesday, residents will no longer be required to provide proof of vaccination in public places, and from Monday next week children aged 12 and under would no longer be required to mask up. Compulsory masking will no longer apply to students in schools. “We’ll never be able to do a full accounting of the extent of the pain and hardship that restrictions have caused,” Premier Jason Kenney said.

[..] PM Trudeau has refused to meet with the truckers or hear their demands, referring to them as a “small, fringe minority” engaged in violence and hateful conduct. In a speech to the parliament on Monday, he accused the truckers of “trying to blockade our economy, our democracy, and our fellow citizens’ daily lives,” and demanded that their protest “has to stop” because the people of Ottawa and Canadians in general “deserve to get their lives back.” On Tuesday, the PM defended the mandates and restrictions his government put in place during the pandemic, saying they worked and will not be removed any time soon. “I can understand frustrations with mandates, but mandates are the way to avoid further restrictions,” he told reporters.

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“..heavy-duty tow trucks can transfer air from their system to the trucks to release their brakes. However, he added that “we have all the capabilities on our tow trucks to do it … but I don’t think anyone would want to.”

Towing Companies Refuse to Move Freedom Convoy Trucks (TC)

“I’ve contacted them all and they’re all refusing, as of today, to provide heavy tow truck work,” city manager Steve Kanellakos told reporters Monday evening, according to a report from the CBC. “Right now we’re reviewing their contracts or standing offer, and reviewing what actions we can take to deal with this unprecedented situation,” Kanellakos added. There are currently more than 400 trucks parked throughout the city in protest, which began over a week ago. The drivers have said that they will not move the trucks until the COVID vaccine mandates for drivers doing trips between the US and Canada are lifted. Kanellakos said that Mayor Jim Watson has also been reaching out to towing companies in other cities, but none are willing to help stop the protest.

“Right now, the consensus seems to be that many of them — or most of them — don’t want to do the work because … they rely on on the the heavy truck industry for their livelihood, and they don’t want to damage that part of their business,” Kanellakos said. “That’s the position they’re taking, at least.” The CBC report added that deputy police chief Steve Bell confirmed that they are having trouble finding a willing tow truck operator in “every jurisdiction that’s faced this, and it’s forcing us to come up with some creative solutions.” While Bell wouldn’t say what those creative solutions may be, he did say that they are moving “toward a position where we’re not going to let the tow truck operators … be an obstacle to ending what’s occurring.”

Also speaking to the CBC, Trucker Lloyd Crowe said that there is no way the city will be able to move the trucks without cooperation from the drivers who are protesting. “If you know anything about truck air brakes, once you pull that button, all 18 wheels are locked,” Crowe told CBC on Wednesday. “Nothing can move it, except maybe a big wrecker. And no wrecker worth his salt is going to come anywhere near this, because they’re on our side.” David Allen, president of Gary’s Towing in Thunder Bay told the news organization that while it would be hard, he does not believe that it is impossible. He explained that heavy-duty tow trucks can transfer air from their system to the trucks to release their brakes. However, he added that “we have all the capabilities on our tow trucks to do it … but I don’t think anyone would want to.”

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Curious.

Johnson & Johnson Stops Covid-19 Vaccine Production (RT)

US multinational Johnson & Johnson suspended production of its Covid-19 vaccine late last year amid a massive push by the federal government and health officials to promote getting inoculated, The New York Times reported on Tuesday, citing sources familiar with the situation. The pause in production is reportedly temporary, but the one plant producing the vaccine in the Dutch city of Leiden has apparently shifted its focus to producing a potentially more profitable vaccine for an unrelated virus. It’s unclear if the production pause has affected the availability of the single-jab Covid vaccine, as the company has a stockpile of doses. However, one person familiar with the situation says the suspension could mean a reduction in output of a few hundred million doses.


The plant is expected to produce more after a few months’ break. Other facilities are awaiting regulatory approval or to actually be up and running to produce the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, according to the NYT report. Organizations that distribute the vaccine worldwide told the NYT they were unaware of the production pause, with some expressing concern about the timing. “This is not the time to be switching production lines of anything, when the lives of people across the developing world hang in the balance,” Dr. Ayoade Alakija, co-head of African Union vaccine distribution. Unlike the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, Johnson & Johnson’s offering requires only a single shot for the initial inoculation, while the others are delivered via two shots.

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Long ago.

Americans Have ‘Lost Touch With Reality’ – Russia (RT)

Washington’s rhetoric about the possibility of imposing colossal sanctions on Russia is so outrageous that Moscow sees little point in even responding, one of the country’s top diplomats has said. In an interview with RIA Novosti on Tuesday, Deputy Foreign Minister Alexander Pankin was asked about the possibility of Washington imposing unprecedentedly harsh measures on the Russian energy and financial sectors, including additional sanctions on the Nord Stream 2 pipeline linking the gas fields of Siberia to consumers in Germany. “It’s long been clear to everyone that American legislators have lost touch with reality and are living in a kingdom of their own phobias regarding our country, churning out obscurantist plans to deter Russia on all fronts, with any justification or without one,” Pankin replied.


“I don’t see the point in reacting to the Capitol’s routine initiatives about this. We can only repeat once more our regret about what has happened, and confirm that there will inevitably be negative consequences from the harsh restrictions laid on us by the Western initiators of such measures,” the diplomat added. Asked whether Russia is prepared for the possibility of being cut off from the SWIFT banking system, which some American and European leaders have threatened if Moscow decides to invade Ukraine, Pankin said, “Our hope is that, as opposed to Washington’s completely unjustified movement towards the ‘sanction field’, reason will still prevail in Brussels and these measures will not happen, which would damage the stability of the international finance system itself, as well as global economic recovery and the possibility of fulfilling the [UN initiative] Sustainable Development Goals on time.”

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Sleep.

Scientists Divulge Easy Way To Lose Weight (RT)

Sleeping more can help people to consume less calories per day and to lose weight, if those healthy sleeping habits are maintained over a prolonged period of time, according to a new study conducted by researchers at the University of Chicago, Illinois. The findings were published on Monday in peer-reviewed journal JAMA Internal Medicine. The clinical research involved 80 adults aged between 21 and 40. All the participants qualified as overweight with a body mass index ranging from 25 to 29.9, while ‘normal’ body weight falls into the range between 18.5 and 24.9. All the participants also had habitual sleep of 6.5 hours per night or less. The research was conducted for a prolonged period of time, running from November 2014 to October 2020.

The participants were observed for a two-week period to establish a baseline and were then randomly separated in two groups. The control group continued with their sleeping habits without any intervention, while another group received “an individualized sleep hygiene counseling session,” aimed at prolonging their bedtime to some 8.5 hours. No further support beyond the counseling was provided to the participants, who continued to sleep in their own beds, though they wore tracking devices to register the duration of their sleeping time. “Most other studies on this topic in labs are short-lived, for a couple of days, and food intake is measured by how much participants consume from an offered diet,” lead researcher Dr Esra Tasali at the University of Chicago’s Sleep Center stated.

“In our study we only manipulated sleep and had the participants eat whatever they wanted, with no food logging or anything else to track their nutrition by themselves.” The sleep duration was increased for the sleep extension group by 1.2 hours per night on average, which led to a significant decrease in energy intake compared to the control group. The people from the sleep extension group consumed some 270 kilocalories on average less, which is quite significant given that recommended daily intake is 2,000 kilocalories for women and 2,500 for men. “No significant treatment effect in total energy expenditure was found, resulting in weight reduction in the sleep extension group vs the control group,” the study reads.

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Fear sells, not just negative news.

Elon Musk Gives Views On ‘Traditional’ Media (RT)

Tesla CEO Elon Musk, known for his prolific tweeting, questioned his 73 million followers about why “traditional” media outlets operate as a “relentless hatestream” before then engaging in discussions with his followers on the topic. “Why is the “traditional” media such a relentless hatestream? Real question,” Musk tweeted on Monday. This post was quickly followed by another, clarifying the billionaire’s position. “Most news outlets attempt to answer the question: ‘What are the worst things happening on Earth today?’ It’s a big planet! Obviously, some bad things are happening somewhere at any given time, but focusing relentlessly on those does not give an accurate picture of reality,” he wrote.


Musk then engaged in debate with followers, disagreeing with one view that “negative news sells better,” pointing to some popular “citizen podcasts” which “aren’t negative.” “Maybe part of why traditional media outlets are so negative is because old habits die hard? They so rarely even try to be positive,” Musk added, sharing his frustration over the constant flow of the “news that makes one sad & angry.” The degree of Musk’s apparent disdain for traditional news media became known when he agreed with another commenter who said the target audience of most media was “the amygdala of the bottom 50% of humanity.” “Sadly true,” the carmaker’s chief executive wrote.

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When everyone’s got an EV, they’ll be useless.

Lithium Price Rockets Nearly 500% In A Year (G.)

Lithium prices have “gone ballistic” as surging electric vehicles sales worldwide create massive demand for the critical component of lithium-ion batteries. According to figures from Benchmark Mineral Intelligence (BMI), the price of the lithium-rich raw material spodumene rose 478.3% between January 2021 and January 2022. In January alone the price of spodumene jumped 45.5% to US$2,400 a tonne, up from $1,650 in December. Similar price rises were recorded for lithium carbonate and hydroxide – refined lithium at different stages of purity – over the past year. BMI is forecasting the price will continue to increase for at least the next six month off the back of massive demand for battery cells.


In January the consulting firm McKinsey predicted the market for lithium batteries would grow to at least $360bn by 2030, with growth averaging 20% a year until the end of the decade. But some analysts have sounded a note of caution as lithium pricing can be volatile – demand can grow quickly but new mines open and increase supply, dropping the price again. Tim Buckley, an energy transition analyst and director of Clean Energy Finance, says demand for lithium is likely to remain high. “It’s unsustainably high – it’s gone ballistic. It’s just brilliant to watch – the world’s transforming before our eyes,” Buckley said. “Nothing excites financial markets more than a 500% increase in prices.”

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Google translation from Dutch.

Jeff Bezos’ Yacht Can Count On Rotten Eggs (Engelen)

Not so long ago there was a ship whose fortunes could serve as the perfect symbol of the age in which we were then. And no, I’m not talking about the Titanic, that monument of hubris and stupidity, which went down on its maiden voyage and disappeared into the icy ocean with 1,522 people on board, and with that, two years before the outbreak of the First World War, announced the end of the bourgeois belle époque. Not to mention the Probo Koala, that tanker full of chemical waste on its way to the Ivory Coast to discharge its toxic cargo, which suddenly became the focus of our nascent environmental consciousness, only to then, like a hot potato, to be shifted from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, to end up in the harbor of Amsterdam where it lay rotting for months and acted as a constant reminder of the end of our ecological innocence.

No, I’m talking about that Italian cruise ship, the Costa Concordia, which, with over four thousand passengers on board, ran aground at nightfall off the coast of Italy, at the port of Giglio, and began to overturn slowly, because the sun-tanned captain of the ship, and I’m exaggerating oly a little here, let his Moldovan sweetheart give him a blowjob during the maneuver. Meanwhile, a new ship has forced itself as a symbol on our collective consciousness. I am, of course, talking about the three-masted three-masted ship owned by Amazon boss, Jeff Bezos, which is currently being built at a cost of half a billion dollars at yacht builder Oceanco in Alblasserdam and is nearing completion. It would be a sailing yacht with a length of 127 meters long and a height of 55 meters, which, according to news agency Bloomberg, sets a new standard in the wonderful world of superyachts, with many undisclosed details.

In order to be able to choose the sea in the future, however, the yacht has to cross the Nieuwe Maas through the Koningshaven in Rotterdam. As it happens, the iconic Lift Bridge blocks the passage of the yacht: up to 44 meters high, the mouth of the bridge can be opened, too low for the masts of Bezos. And so, despite previous promises to residents, the city council has pledged to dismantle the bridge one more time to allow the yacht to escape. It is again the perfect fusion of an era, in this case of the corona pandemic entering its third year in three weeks, and of the neoliberal nature of the crisis that accompanied it. The measures taken by the state to prevent the spread of the virus and to prevent healthcare overload have had major redistributive consequences. Not only have the billions in monetary easing by central banks further exacerbated wealth inequalities, as the insane house and apartment prices in major cities illustrate: good for investors, bad luck for residents.

The shutting down or throttling of social intercourse has also greatly favored some and disadvantaged others. Household consumption expenditure did not fall during the four so-called lockdowns. What has happened is that one retail channel (the middle class with its physical stores) has been closed and the other retail channel (Amazon) has remained open, with a massive shift in terms of employees, logistics, turnover and thus profits from one channel to another. [..] That is what makes this such a significant event: after two years of corona measures, we have finally arrived in the neofeudal caste society that Thomas Piketty has been warning about since 2014. In that world, ordinary citizens with their bridges are only set pieces in the lives of the super rich. Knowing that will help you understand a little better why Twitter – another such platform – is circulating the call to treat Bezos’ ship with rotten eggs as it passes. You can hardly miss him!

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Brand/Taibbi

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Jan 282022
 


Pablo Picasso Bust of woman with arms raised 1922

 

White House Calls CNN Report On Russian Invasion ‘Completely False’ (RT)
The Covid Evidence Dismissed By The BBC As ‘Conspiracy-laden’ (Beck)
The High Cost of Disparaging Natural Immunity to Covid (Makary)
4 Out of 5 Americans Have Covid ‘Natural Immunity’ (KB)
Denmark Declares Covid-19 No Longer ‘Socially Critical Disease’ (TH)
Sweden Opts Against Covid Jabs For Children (RT)
Vaccine Failure In Two Charts And Two Graphs From Four Countries (Berenson)
Most Covid Patients In Wales In Hospital For Other Conditions (BBC)
Biden Admin Used Billions In Hospital Covid-19 Funds To Pay Drugmakers (STAT)
The Folly of Pandemic Censorship (Taibbi)
Joe Rogan, Elon Musk React To Canadian Trucker Convoy (RT)
Truckers Inspired By Canada Begin ‘Freedom’ Convoys Around The World (JTN)
Musk Unloads On ‘Puppet’ Biden In Twitter Rant (RT)
China Warns US Over Ukraine & Blasts “Interference” In Beijing Olympics (ZH)
Why Do American Elites Want War in Ukraine? (Kassam)
What Did Clinton Know and When Did She Know It? (Sperry)

 

 

 

 

US military: average per year 1.7 million reports of all diseases combined. First 10 months 2021: 22 million.

 

 

Scary indeed.

Ryan Cole

 

 

Natasha Bertrand posted a story about a Biden-Zelensky call that didn’t go well, but deleted it soon afterward. Still, people from the White House, Ukraine and CNN itself reacted to it. Was it all for clickbait?

White House Calls CNN Report On Russian Invasion ‘Completely False’ (RT)

The White House has pushed back on a CNN report about Thursday’s phone call between US President Joe Biden and his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky, calling it “completely false.” “President Biden said that there is a distinct possibility that the Russians could invade Ukraine in February. He has previously said this publicly and we have been warning about this for months. Reports of anything more or different than that are completely false,” Emily Horne, a spokeswoman for the National Security Council, tweeted on Thursday evening. She was responding to a tweet by CNN’s senior national security correspondent Alexander Marquardt, who was quoting his colleague in Kiev, Matthew Chance.

“A Russian invasion is now virtually certain once the ground freezes, Biden said to Zelensky, a senior Ukrainian official told [Chance]. Kyiv could be ‘sacked,’ Russian forces may attempt to occupy it, ‘prepare for impact’, Biden said, according to this official,” Marquardt tweeted. CNN’s The Lead with Jake Tapper had Chance cite “the Ukrainian official” live on air. “The capital, Kiev, this city here, could be “sacked.” That’s the word he [Biden] apparently used, according to this Ukrainian official. [It could be] sacked by Russian forces,” Chance told Tapper. Chance went on to quote what he called a “quite impactful line” from the Biden-Zelensky call as narrated to him by the anonymous Ukrainian official. “President Biden [was] telling his Ukrainian counterpart that Ukraine should prepare for impact. Quite a stark warning there from the US leader.”

The quote was quickly picked up by other outlets, such as the Independent, the Express and the Daily Mail. Meanwhile, CNN anchor Jim Sciutto quoted Horne as saying that “anonymous sources are ‘leaking’ falsehoods” about the call. Zelensky’s spokesman Sergii Nykyforov likewise dismissed reports citing the alleged “senior Ukranian official” as “completely false.” “Correct information can only be found in official releases from the Ukrainian and American sides,” he stated.

Phone call

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The UK Yellow Card system fails as badly as VAERS. And that is not a coincidence. It takes 40 minutes to fill out a form.

The Covid Evidence Dismissed By The BBC As ‘Conspiracy-laden’ (Beck)

Ms Bayliss has been gathering witness statements from those who allege they are vaccine-injured, and from potential expert witnesses in the US and the UK. She said: ‘We have subsequently uploaded 103 statements regarding vaccine associated deaths and injury, and 13 from identifiable whistleblowers, medical experts and scientists.’ To build his case, Mr Hyland investigated our medicines regulatory authority, specifically the alleged negligence of June Raine, chief executive of the MHRA. He said: ‘The charge against the MHRA is that they negligently conducted themselves and have caused British citizens real harm and suffering. ‘They have failed to act on any of the Yellow Card reports they have received. There are currently 2,000 deaths reported and 500,000 adverse events. They should have stopped the programme before the deaths reached 100 and launched a thorough investigation.’

The Yellow Card data show that 1 in 120 people have reported an event they considered serious enough to spend 40 minutes filling out a Yellow Card form. ‘This may be just the tip of the iceberg,’ said Ms Bayliss, ‘as the MHRA admit they receive information from around 10 per cent of those damaged.’ The figure is low because some doctors find they cannot access the Yellow Card scheme from their hospital computers, while others do not know about it. Members of the public are generally not informed about Yellow Card and most who complain to their GP that they think they have suffered a serious adverse event are told that the vaccine is an unlikely cause and their symptoms are put down to ‘coincidence’, as the Royal College of General Practitioners has not issued them with any advice.

If the coincidence theory held water, you would expect an even spread of reports across the three vaccinations used in Britain. We have Pfizer-BioNTech’s experimental mRNA jab introduced in December 2020, and Oxford/AstraZeneca’s more traditional one which has been available since January 2021. Plus the new kid on the block, Moderna’s mRNA jab introduced in April 2021. Although we began using it four months after Pfizer and three months after AstraZeneca, Moderna is clocking up 50 per cent more Yellow Cards than AZ, who have 60 per cent more reported injuries than Pfizer. Oxford/AstraZeneca has been received by 24.9million people and the Yellow Card scheme shows that 1 in 103 have been impacted, while Pfizer-BioNTech’s has been received by 25.3million people and Yellow Card shows that 1 in 162 people have been impacted.

Moderna has been given to 1.6million people and its Yellow Card reporting rate shows that 1 in 50 people have been impacted. On average, 1 in 120 people have suffered an adverse reaction. ‘In our view, we have enough evidence to show gross negligence,’ said Mr Hyland. ‘It is clear that the MHRA have failed to follow up concerns about vaccine injury and they failed to withdraw harmful batches when they knew about the issues. ‘They also exaggerated the risk of Covid by failing to distinguish the difference between dying with Covid, which is when someone has other illnesses, or of Covid, which is when the patient has no other illnesses.’ Covid-19, caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, has a low fatality rate: less than one per cent of those who contract it. The Office of National Statistics has revealed under a Freedom of Information request that only 13,597 deaths in England and Wales out of 140,000 attributed to Covid were caused by Covid alone. The bulk of deaths were of people with comorbidities.

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The immune system works.

The High Cost of Disparaging Natural Immunity to Covid (Makary)

For most of last year, many of us called for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to release its data on reinfection rates, but the agency refused. Finally last week, the CDC released data from New York and California, which demonstrated natural immunity was 2.8 times as effective in preventing hospitalization and 3.3 to 4.7 times as effective in preventing Covid infection compared with vaccination. Yet the CDC spun the report to fit its narrative, bannering the conclusion “vaccination remains the safest strategy.” It based this conclusion on the finding that hybrid immunity—the combination of prior infection and vaccination—was associated with a slightly lower risk of testing positive for Covid. But those with hybrid immunity had a similar low rate of hospitalization (3 per 10,000) to those with natural immunity alone. In other words, vaccinating people who had already had Covid didn’t significantly reduce the risk of hospitalization.

Similarly, the National Institutes of Health repeatedly has dismissed natural immunity by arguing that its duration is unknown—then failing to conduct studies to answer the question. Because of the NIH’s inaction, my Johns Hopkins colleagues and I conducted the study. We found that among 295 unvaccinated people who previously had Covid, antibodies were present in 99% of them up to nearly two years after infection. We also found that natural immunity developed from prior variants reduced the risk of infection with the Omicron variant. Meanwhile, the effectiveness of the two-dose Moderna vaccine against infection (not severe disease) declines to 61% against Delta and 16% against Omicron at six months, according to a recent Kaiser Southern California study. In general, Pfizer’s Covid vaccines have been less effective than Moderna’s.

The CDC study and ours confirm what more than 100 other studies on natural immunity have found: The immune system works. The largest of these studies, from Israel, found that natural immunity was 27 times as effective as vaccinated immunity in preventing symptomatic illness. None of this should surprise us. For years, studies have shown that infection with the other coronaviruses that cause severe illness, SARS and MERS, confers lasting immunity. In a study published in May 2020, Covid-recovered monkeys that were rechallenged with the virus didn’t get sick. Public-health officials have a lot of explaining to do. They used the wrong starting hypothesis, ignored contrary preliminary data, and dug in as more evidence emerged that called their position into question.

Many, including Rochelle Walensky, now the CDC’s director, signed the John Snow memorandum in October 2020, which declared that “there is no evidence for lasting protective immunity to SARS-CoV-2 following natural infection.” Many clinicians who talk to other physicians nationwide had have long observed that we don’t see reinfected patients end up on a ventilator or die from Covid, with rare exceptions who almost always have immune disorders. Meanwhile, public-health officials recklessly destroyed the careers of everyday Americans, rallying to fire pilots, truck drivers and others in the supply-chain workforce who didn’t get vaccinated. And in the early months of the vaccine rollout, when supplies were limited, we could have saved many more lives by giving priority to those who didn’t have recorded natural immunity.

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The Great Barrington guys also come from Yale, Harvard, and Stanford. And look what Collins and Fauci did to them.

4 Out of 5 Americans Have Covid ‘Natural Immunity’ (KB)

In the United States, the media barely mention Covid prior infections or the existence of natural immunity. But a CDC-sponsored database in partnership with Yale, Harvard, and Stanford universities shows that the overwhelming majority of Americans have natural immunity from prior infections, Wildfire can exclusively report. The CDC released a study last week called “COVID-19 Cases and Hospitalizations by COVID-19 Vaccination Status and Previous COVID-19 Diagnosis — California and New York, May–November 2021.” The findings were reported by Agence France-Presse. “During America’s last surge of the coronavirus driven by the Delta variant, people who were unvaccinated but survived Covid were better protected than those who were vaccinated and not previously infected,” AFP noted about the new study.


“The finding is the latest to weigh in on a debate on the relative strengths of natural versus vaccine-acquired immunity against SARS-CoV-2, but comes this time with the imprimatur of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC),” AFP added. The U.K.’s Health Security Agency (UKHSA), issued a report that echoes much of the CDC’s findings on natural immunity. It showed that those with prior infections to Covid were much less likely to test positive for Covid infections than those in the vaccinated groups. Those with prior infections even in the pre-Alpha period were tested to have natural immunity roughly equivalent to those with vaccinated immunity acquired from three shots. The UKHSA report also showed that nearly the entire population of Great Britain has some form of antibodies to Covid-19.

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Poof!

Denmark Declares Covid-19 No Longer ‘Socially Critical Disease’ (TH)

As some countries double down on punishing the unvaccinated and continue with draconian Covid-19 restrictions, Denmark has taken the opposite approach, announcing Wednesday that all safety measures will be lifted next week. Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen said the Nordic country is reclassifying Covid-19; it will no longer be considered a “socially critical disease.” “Tonight we can shrug our shoulders and find the smile again. We have incredibly good news, we can now remove the last coronavirus restrictions in Denmark,” Frederiksen said at a press conference. Frederiksen acknowledged that the decision may seem unusual as Omicron infections are spiking in the country, with 46,000 new Covid cases reported on Wednesday.


“Recent weeks have seen very high infection rates, in fact the highest in the entire pandemic,” she noted. “Therefore, it may seem strange and paradoxical that we are now ready to let go of the restrictions.” Health Minister Magnus Heunicke pointed to high rates of vaccination and fewer hospitalizations as the reasons officials have taken this approach. “The situation in Denmark is that we have this decoupling between infections and intensive care patients, and it is mainly due to the large attachment among Danes to revaccination. That is the reason why it is safe and the right thing to do now,” Heunicke said. The UK, Ireland and the Netherlands have all taken a similar approach.

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For children 5-11 years old. Fauci wants 3 jabs each for every kid over 6 months.

Sweden Opts Against Covid Jabs For Children (RT)

The Sweden Public Health Agency on Thursday announced that it had opted against following some western countries in endorsing vaccination against Covid-19 for children 5-11 years old. Administering shots in that age group wouldn’t have a major effect on the spread of Covid-19 and would offer little medical benefit to the individual children receiving them, the agency said in its guidance for the upcoming spring term. “With the knowledge we have today, with a low risk for serious disease for kids, we don’t see any clear benefit with vaccinating them,” agency official Britta Bjorkholm told reporters. The decision may be revisited if new information becomes available or a new variant of the virus changes the risk-reward analysis for vaccinating children.


Sweden’s decision is contrary to a trend toward countries approving vaccination of younger and younger children, especially with Covid-19’s Omicron variant spreading rapidly. Such counties as Germany, France, Italy and Spain have approved jabs for children as young as 5. In the US, chief White House medical advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci told reporters on Wednesday that he expects three-dose regimens to eventually be approved for children as young as 6 months old. Proponents of vaccinating children have argued that even though risks of serious illness or death from Covid-19 are relatively low in young people, they can spread the virus to more vulnerable segments of the population. Swedish health officials, however, argue that vaccinating small kids would entails no great benefit – either to them or to the people around them. “A general vaccination from the age of 5 is also not expected to have any major effect on the spread of infection at present, neither in the group of children aged 5–11 nor among other groups in the population,” the Public Health Agency said.

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Here’s two of them. It’s repeated everywhere. The vaccinated are dying.

Vaccine Failure In Two Charts And Two Graphs From Four Countries (Berenson)

I could make the long case about original antigenic sin, falling antibodies, the issues around cellular immunity, myocarditis, and all the rest. But I’m just going to offer these four images because they speak more clearly than anything I could say. Scotland, Britain, Israel, and Denmark are four of the world’s most highly vaccinated countries. They all have 90 percent adult Covid vaccination rates and 60 percent adult boosters. Yet the vast majority of deaths are occurring in vaccinated people; serious cases are soaring; and infections are almost literally off the charts. This is Covid vaccine failure at the most profound and basic level.


SCOTLAND: Covid death rates (RATES, not raw numbers) by vaccination status for the last four weeks. Death rates in vaccinated but unboosted people have been higher than rates in the unvaccinated each week. Also, 87 percent of total deaths occurred in vaccinated people in the most recent week:

BRITAIN: (the data in the British chart below is United Kingdom-wide and thus includes Scotland – some British readers asked me to make that clear.) Covid deaths by vaccination status in the most recent four weeks (2,845 out of the 3,860 people for whom vaccine status could be determined were vaccinated – 74 percent):

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But you still label them Covid patients?

Most Covid Patients In Wales In Hospital For Other Conditions (BBC)

Well over half of patients with confirmed cases of Covid in hospital in Wales are being treated for other conditions, official figures show for the first time. A total of 42.2% of confirmed Covid patients were being “actively” treated for it on Tuesday. This means nearly six out of 10 are “incidental” Covid patients being treated for other conditions. Meanwhile, Covid hospital figures continue to fall. The number of patients being treated primarily for Covid is far higher for those in critical care – nearly 90%, according to Digital Health and Care Wales. The average for the last week for Covid patients is just over 40% being treated primarily for the virus.


Even though patients might “incidentally” have Covid, it does not mean that it cannot add complications to their health or treatment, and it still presents challenges for patient management for hospitals. Meanwhile, there were another 220 patients who “probably” or “definitely” caught Covid while in hospital, according to Public Health Wales figures for the last week. The daily average number of Covid patients in hospital beds dropped for the 12th day in a row to 560 on Wednesday, according to Digital Health and Care Wales. The daily average for those patients in critical care or on invasive ventilation with Covid has also fallen to 22 – the lowest figure since 11 August. Daily Covid admissions are also still falling, down to 27 a day.

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The big hospitals are fine. The smaller ones, not so much.

Biden Admin Used Billions In Hospital Covid-19 Funds To Pay Drugmakers (STAT)

The Biden administration quietly took nearly $7 billion from a fund meant to help hospitals and clinics affected by the pandemic and used it to buy Covid-19 vaccines and therapeutics, according to a document obtained by STAT. The move is similar to the Trump administration’s decision to divert $10 billion from the same fund to Operation Warp Speed, which STAT reported exclusively in March. Now, the hospital money, known as the Provider Relief Fund, has run dry, and has no new money left to allocate, according to the agency that administers it. Providers have only been able to submit requests for expenses incurred through March 2021 — before both the Delta and Omicron surges battered the health care system.

With the new $7 billion shift, which has not been previously reported, the diversion to drugmakers totals nearly $17 billion, or roughly 10% of the overall money Congress allotted for the fund for hospitals and physician practices. Congress set aside that money to help health care providers pay for pandemic-related expenses including staffing, personal protective equipment, care for uninsured patients, and vaccine distribution. The new details about the Biden administration’s spending decision come as hospitals across the country are struggling with a crushing surge of Covid-19 hospitalizations and deaths due to the Omicron variant. And their representatives in Washington are furious.

[..] A spokesperson for the Department of Health and Human Services said using the money to pay drugmakers for contracts was a reasonable use of the hospital and clinic funds because the vaccines and therapeutics purchased were given to providers at no cost. “All Provider Relief Fund dollars have been used for Provider Relief Fund purposes,” the spokesperson said. However, there is no transparency into which contracts the money was used for, and where those products were distributed. Government watchdog reports offer clues to the timeline of the spending. As of March 1, 2021, $10 billion had been used to pay drugmakers. By Aug. 31, that number jumped to $14.8 billion. And per the document obtained by STAT, the total is $16.7 billion through Dec. 23.

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“People know authorities lie, which is why the more they clamp down, the bigger their trust problem usually becomes. ”

The Folly of Pandemic Censorship (Taibbi)

NIAID director Anthony Fauci has told three different stories about masks, including an episode in which he essentially claimed to have lied to us for our own good, in order to preserve masks for frontline workers — what Slate called one of the “Noble lies about Covid-19.” Officials turned out to be wrong about cloth masks anyway. Here is Fauci again on the issue of what to tell the public about how many people would need to be vaccinated to achieve “herd immunity,” casually explaining the logic of lying to the public for its sake: “When polls said only about half of all Americans would take a vaccine, I was saying herd immunity would take 70 to 75 percent. Then, when newer surveys said 60 percent or more would take it, I thought, “I can nudge this up a bit,” so I went to 80, 85.”

We’ve seen sudden changes in official positions on the efficacy of ventilators and lockdowns, on the dangers (or lack thereof) of opening schools, and on the risks, however small, of vaccine side effects like myocarditis. The CDC also just released data showing natural immunity to be more effective in preventing hospitalization and in preventing infection than vaccination. The government had previously said, over and over, that vaccination is preferable to natural immunity (here’s NIH director Francis Collins telling that to Bret Baier unequivocally in August). This was apparently another “noble lie,” designed to inspire people to get vaccinated, that mostly just convinced people to wonder if any official statements can be trusted.

To me, the story most illustrative of the problem inherent in policing “Covid misinformation” involves a town hall by Joe Biden from July 21 of last year. In it, the president said bluntly, “You’re not going to get COVID if you have these vaccinations,” pretty much the definition of Covid misinformation: It was bad enough when, a month later, the CDC released figures showing 25% of a sample of 43,000 Covid cases involved fully vaccinated people. Far worse was a fact-check by Politifact, which judged Biden’s clearly wrong statement “half true.” “It is rare for people who are fully vaccinated to contract COVID-19, but it does happen,” the site wrote. They then cited CDC data as backup.

“The data that the CDC collected before May 1 show that, of 101 million people vaccinated in the U.S., 10,262 (0.01%) experienced breakthrough cases.” Politifact’s “bottom line”: Biden “exaggerated,” but “cases are rare.” Anyone paying attention to that story will now distrust the president, the CDC, and “reputable” mainstream fact-checkers like the Pew Center’s Politifact. These are the exact sort of authorities whose guidance sites like the Center for Countering Digital Hate will rely upon when trying to pressure companies like Substack to remove certain voices.

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Big campaign to vilify the truckers. Trudeau, had Covid and is well jabbed, happens to get infected and goes in hiding for 5 days, to avoid the PR mess.

Joe Rogan, Elon Musk React To Canadian Trucker Convoy (RT)

Tesla and SpaceX founder Elon Musk and podcaster Joe Rogan have spoken about the Canadian truckers driving across the country to protest the government’s Covid-19 mandates, after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau denounced them as a “fringe minority” with “unacceptable views.” “Canadian truckers rule,” Musk tweeted on Thursday afternoon. The ‘Freedom Convoy’ that set out from British Columbia and is expected to reach the Canadian capital of Ottawa sometime this weekend was ignored by the major media outlets at first. As it approached Ontario, however, the convoy became a political football. Trudeau denounced the truckers and said they “do not represent the views of Canadians” in a televised speech on Wednesday.

On Thursday morning, he announced he had been “exposed” to Covid-19 and would quarantine for five days – thereby missing the convoy’s arrival in Ottawa – even though he has already had the virus and been vaccinated and boosted. Jagmeet Singh, whose New Democrats are propping up Trudeau’s minority government, also condemned the truckers and accused them of spreading “false information” via “inflammatory, divisive and hateful comments.” He also criticized his brother-in-law for donating to the protest. Canadian media reported that Jodhveer Singh Dhaliwal had asked for his donation back after being told of “the true nature” of the convoy.


[..] Benjamin Dichter, one of the organizers of the ‘Freedom Convoy’ and the group’s official spokesman, said they are peaceful and law-abiding. He told the Toronto Sun that the convoy is a protest over Trudeau’s government forcing drivers to wear masks even when alone inside their trucks, a vaccine mandate, and a requirement to get the jab before crossing the US-Canada border. Dichter also denied reports that GoFundMe has frozen some Can$5 million in donations for the convoy, calling them “fake news.” Joe Rogan, who hosts the immensely popular podcast on Spotify, also shone a spotlight on the convoy during his show on Wednesday. Speaking to a guest from Montreal, he showed footage of the truckers and described it as Canada being “in revolt” over the government’s mandates. “It’s a giant convoy of trucks,” Rogan said. “That’s apparently some insane amount of people. Fifty thousand trucks are headed to Ottawa to protest the vaccine mandates by Trudeau.”

Canada: We’re Not Gonna Take it!

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My guess would be Canada won’t be repeated. The truckers also want to block US-Canada border crossings.

Truckers Inspired By Canada Begin ‘Freedom’ Convoys Around The World (JTN)

Truckers around the world are creating their own convoys to protest COVID-19 vaccine mandates after being inspired by the Canadian Freedom Convoy, which reportedly has thousands of trucks. Freedom Convoy 2022, the group that organized the Canadian trucker protest, reported initially having 1,600 trucks. The convoy, which now has nearly 50,000 trucks, will be in Ottowa by Saturday with the goal of getting “the government of Canada to repeal its cross border Covid tracking passport / phone app and ALL Covid-19 vaccine mandates,” according to a press release. The Canadian convoy has reportedly been joined by some American truckers and in Ontario, farmers came in tractors to show support. Both the United States and Canada mandate cross-border truckers to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

Americans are invited to also protest the mandate this Saturday at three border locations: Houlton, Maine; Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan; and Sweet Grass, Montana. In Australia, the “2022 Official Convoy to Canberra” has more than 44,000 members on Facebook and more than 10,000 followers on Telegram as of Thursday. The group is planning to meet in the capital by Jan. 31 to protest vaccine mandates. European truckers are organizing to protest vaccine mandates as well. The European Convoy Telegram channel has more than 7,300 members. Truckers are organizing across Europe, including the Netherlands, France, Hungary and more, to converge on Brussels by Feb. 7. The truckers have received an outpouring of support from celebrities as well.

Entrepreneur Elon Musk, one of the wealthiest men in the world tweeted his support for the convoy. “Canadian truckers rule,” he said, later adding: “If you scare people enough, they will demand removal of freedom. This is the path to tyranny.”

Trudeau hiding
https://twitter.com/i/status/1486870820177649666

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“Last year, the United Auto Workers union said Ford “put corporate greed and more potential profits over American jobs”..”

Musk Unloads On ‘Puppet’ Biden In Twitter Rant (RT)

Tesla tycoon Elon Musk referred to Joe Biden as a “damp sock puppet in human form” on Thursday, in response to the US president’s photo-op with General Motors chair Mary Barra. In the video, which was posted on Biden’s official Twitter account on Wednesday evening, the president praised GM’s investment in electric vehicle manufacturing as a blow to climate change. Responding to the message, Musk argued that electric vehicle manufacturing in the US “Starts with a T / Ends with an A / ESL in the middle.” He then took a dig at the president, completing his tweet with a “sock” emoji.

Musk also claimed that Biden was “treating the American public like fools” while responding to another Twitter user, who argued that Biden was “trying to cancel a great American company and rewrite EV history” by endorsing GM and Ford. Amateur fact-checkers pounced on the thread to back up Musk, posting data that shows Tesla’s Model Y and Model 3 were by far the top-selling electric vehicles in the US – and both made domestically. GM’s Bolt came in at a distant fourth place in 2021, with Ford’s Mustang Mach-E beating it out for third place, according to Car & Driver. In a video with Barra, Biden wrote that “companies like GM and Ford are building more electric vehicles here at home than ever before,” while Barra announced a $7 billion investment in Michigan along with a battery cell plant to be opened in the US.


At least some of Ford’s electric vehicles are manufactured in Mexico, not the US. Last year, the United Auto Workers union said Ford “put corporate greed and more potential profits over American jobs” with a plan to build a new electric model in Mexico, rather than in Ohio.

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1 week till Olympics. Xi is nervous.

China Warns US Over Ukraine & Blasts “Interference” In Beijing Olympics (ZH)

China on Thursday blasted the US for continuing to interfere in its affairs, further saying nothing has fundamentally changed, but instead charging there’s been “new shocks” since the Biden-Xi virtual summit of two months ago. The scathing rebuke came on Thursday as Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi held a phone call with his counterpart Secretary of State Antony Blinken. Importantly, Wang took the opportunity to for the first time side with Russia in the direct communication with the US top diplomat, saying Moscow has “reasonable security concerns” over Ukraine that must be “taken seriously”. Chinese state media and Beijing-linked pundits have also become increasingly vocal on the issue, charging NATO with overstepping…

He urged calm on the part of all sides but specifically called on the West to “abandon its Cold War mentality”. It’s been no secret that Washington sanctions and punitive actions against officials in both countries have served to make Russia and China unlikely allies against a common enemy. “All parties should completely abandon the Cold War mentality and form a balanced, effective and sustainable European security mechanism through negotiation,” Wang spelled out in the call with Blinken, according to AFP. The tough rhetoric echoed the words of Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian during a Wednesday press briefing. In response to US claims that Russia is likely to invade Ukraine during the Beijing Winter Olympics, Zhao said,

“As the world’s largest military alliance, NATO should abandon the outdated Cold War mentality and ideological bias, and do things that are conducive to upholding peace and stability.” He suggested that NATO is outdated and contributes to instability: “China firmly opposes all kinds of small cliques,” he added, and urged “fully consider each other’s legitimate security concerns, avoid antagonism and confrontation, and properly address differences and disputes through equal consultation on the basis of mutual respect.”

Wang focused much of his Thursday call with Blinken on the “urgent priority” that the “US should stop interfering in the Beijing Winter Olympics.” The swipe appeared not just aimed at Washington’s continued emphasis on China’s human rights abuses, including allegations of detention centers and “genocide” targeting Uighur Muslims, but in response to the words the day prior from Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman. Sherman had unexpectedly linked the Ukraine crisis with the Olympic games hosted by China: “We all are aware that the Beijing Olympics begin on Feb. 4, the opening ceremony, and President Putin expects to be there. I think that, probably, [Chinese] President Xi Jinping would not be ecstatic if Putin chose that moment to invade Ukraine, so that may affect his timing and his thinking,” Sherman said in a virtual conference.

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“Putin is the devil and Russia subverted American democracy” has become a moralistic mantra for every Biden booster and Foggy Bottom staffer.”

Why Do American Elites Want War in Ukraine? (Kassam)

George Orwell’s The Lion and the Unicorn (1941) contains the following description of the English elite: “One thing that has always shown that the English ruling class are morally fairly sound, is that in time of war they are ready enough to get themselves killed…. What is to be expected of them is not treachery or physical cowardice, but stupidity, unconscious sabotage, an infallible instinct for doing the wrong thing. They are not wicked, or not altogether wicked; they are merely unteachable. Only when their money and power are gone will the younger among them begin to grasp what century they are living in.”

America’s own ruling class has more than its share of the unteachable types, as well as the cynical scoundrelism of Orwell’s description of the U.S. ruling elite as “mere bandits…consciously clinging to unjust privileges and beating down opposition by bribery and tear-gas bombs.” And when it’s not bombs at home, it’s bombs away. Or perhaps in Joe Biden’s case, both. The current president is perhaps the leading exemplar of American banditry, coupling treachery with an infallible instinct for doing the wrong thing. His own former boss, President Barack Obama, is said to have remarked upon his Vice President’s “ability to f*** things up.” And that ability has not diminished with time.

So, of course, to war. Whether in lock-step or goose-step, the rest of the ruling class amplifies Biden’s thirst for something, anything that provides respite from domestic catastrophe. We are just days away from front-page headlines dubbing the tent cities across America “Bidenvilles.” Something must be done. And that thing, to paraphrase Vice President Kamala Harris, is the thing they have been doing, every day: point at Russia. “Putin is the devil and Russia subverted American democracy” has become a moralistic mantra for every Biden booster and Foggy Bottom staffer. But flaccid, obfuscatory jaw-jawing over the moral turpitude of Russia’s dealings with Ukraine has also whet the appetites of the long-benched war lobby. That lobby wants its turn back at the helm. Sanctions ain’t good enough, cry its advocates on Capitol Hill and in the media. Stiffen the sinews. Summon up someone else’s blood. Cry Ukraine for democracy, Joey and Uncle Sam! No one’s buying it.

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I get the feeling that if Durham doesn’t do it, someone else will. And what did Obama know?

What Did Clinton Know and When Did She Know It? (Sperry)

As indictments and new court filings indicate that Special Counsel John Durham is investigating Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign for feeding false reports to the FBI to incriminate Donald Trump and his advisers as Kremlin agents, Clinton’s role in the burgeoning scandal remains elusive. What did she know and when did she know it? Top officials involved in her campaign have repeatedly claimed, some under oath, that they and the candidate were unaware of the foundation of their disinformation campaign: the 35-page collection of now debunked claims of Trump/Russia collusion known as the Steele dossier. Even though her campaign helped pay for the dossier, they claim she only read it after BuzzFeed News published it in 2017.

But court documents, behind-the-scenes video footage and recently surfaced evidence reveal that Clinton and her top campaign advisers were much more involved in the more than $1 million operation to dredge up dirt on Trump and Russia than they have let on. [..] Dossier author Christopher Steele himself has suggested Clinton was briefed on his reports. On July 5, 2016 — the same day the FBI publicly exonerated Clinton in her email scandal — Steele handed off the first installments of the dossier to an FBI agent overseas who had handled him previously as an informant. In their London meeting, Steele noted that Clinton was aware of his reporting, according to contemporaneous notes Steele took of their conversation.

“The notes reflect that Steele told [his FBI handler Michael Gaeta] that Steele was aware that ‘Democratic Party associates’ were paying for [his] research; the ‘ultimate client’ was the leadership of the Clinton presidential campaign; and ‘the candidate’ was aware of Steele’s reporting,” Justice Department watchdog Michael Horowitz wrote in his 2019 report examining the FBI’s use of the dossier to justify spying on Trump campaign adviser Carter Page. Later that same month, during the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, the CIA picked up Russian chatter about a Clinton foreign policy adviser who was trying to develop allegations to “vilify” Trump. The intercepts said Clinton herself had approved a “plan” to “stir up a scandal” against Trump by tying him to Putin. According to handwritten notes, then-CIA chief John Brennan warned President Obama that Moscow had intercepted information about the “alleged approval by Hillary Clinton on July 26, 2016, of a proposal from one of her foreign policy advisers to vilify Donald Trump.”

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Kolakusic
https://twitter.com/i/status/1486641636784357381

 

 

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Dec 222021
 
 December 22, 2021  Posted by at 9:09 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,  94 Responses »


Berthe Morisot Julie and her boat1884

 

Omicron Could Be ‘A Christmas Present’ – Malone (WND)
BioNTech CEO Says ‘Even Triple-Vaccinated’ Transmit COVID (SAC)
How Fauci and Collins Shut Down Covid Debate (WSJ Ed.)
Fauci Says Unvaxxed Relatives Not Worthy of Family Christmas Gatherings (CTH)
An Interview With Fauci’s Nemesis (Beck)
Here’s A Reality Check (Denninger)
Prepare For Fourth Covid Jab, Tony Blair Institute Says (RT)
EU Sets Binding 9 Month Validity Of Covid-19 Travel Pass (R.)
Austria Hiring People to “Hunt Down Vaccine Refusers” (SN)
Ryanair CEO Calls For Unvaccinated “Idiots” To Be Ostracised From Society (SN)
Judge Blocks Biden’s Vaccine Mandate for Federal Contractors in 10 States (ET)
Covid Modelling Shows The Most Worrying Scenario, Not The Most Likely (G.)
A Letter from a Concerned Psychologist (Nicassio)
Americans Warned About Risk Of Russian Invasion Of Ukraine (RT)
The Fed Gets Its Ducks in a Row for the Next Wall Street Bailout (Martens)
“If You Could Die Of Irony, She Would Be Dead”: Musk Slams Liz Warren (ZH)

 

 

 

 

For context, in the UK:

• same time last year, 40,000 daily cases of Covid
• this year, 90,000

• same time last year, 21,000 hospitalised
• this year, 8,000

Additionally, hospital stays will likely be much shorter this year.

 

 

First US death

 

 

“..if you believe in a God,” the rise of the omicron variant “looks an awful lot like a Christmas present.”

Omicron Could Be ‘A Christmas Present’ – Malone (WND)

The new omicron variant that is causing renewed panic among government officials and media could turn out to be “a Christmas present,” says the inventor of the mRNA technology behind the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines. Dr. Robert W. Malone, in a video interview Monday with WND, explained that while the original SARS-CoV-2 virus settled in the lungs, a new University of Hong Kong study that is still under peer review is among studies indicating omicron is settling in the upper respiratory tract. That makes it more transmissible but less virulent. Consequently, the new variant, which was first detected in South Africa on Nov. 25, could act similarly to a live attenuated virus vaccine, producing mild symptoms and natural immunity to COVID-19, Malone said.

He urged caution, noting a pre-print U.K. study by Imperial College of London reporting it is finding no difference in omicron hospitalizations compared to delta. However, the U.K. researchers acknowledged in their initial report that hospitalization data “remains very limited at this time.” In fact, South African officials reported last week that only 1.7% of identified COVID-19 cases were admitted to hospitals in the second week of infections in the fourth wave. That’s compared with 19% in the same week of the third delta-driven wave, South African Health Minister Joe Phaahla said at a press conference. [..] Malone also discussed in the WND interview a new study from Ontario, Canada, suggesting vaccination could predispose someone to a higher risk of infection by omicron.

“If so, that would be the clear indication of the vaccine-enhanced infection and disease risk that not just I had been concerned about, but that the FDA was concerned about,” he said. His main caution with the Ontario data is that there is no indication of how many cases were omicron and how many were delta.[..] Malone also commented on the new release of emails showing that outgoing National Institutes of Health Director Francis Collins asked White House coronavirus adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci to carry out a “quick and devastating published takedown” of the Great Barrington Declaration in the fall of 2020. [..] “We have now clear, clear evidence of collusion by senior government officials to suppress scientific discussion and debate about one of the most crucial issues that we’ve addressed over the last two years, which is whether or not lockdowns make sense,” Malone said.

“And the data are overwhelming. They don’t.” And, he continued, “the worst part is the rest of the world looks to the U.S. for leadership.” “There’s a good chance that Australia wouldn’t be in this hellhole that they are now in if Francis Collins hadn’t substituted his opinions for actually looking at the data,” Malone said. On Friday, Malone told Fox News host Laura Ingraham that “if you believe in a God,” the rise of the omicron variant “looks an awful lot like a Christmas present.” He said that to “the experienced vaccinologist,” it looks “like a live attenuated virus vaccine that you might design for purpose.” “It’s going to elicit a strong mucosal immune response. This is about as good as we could possibly want right now, in terms of outcomes,” he said.

Yet, Ingraham noted, the media and political establishment are “freaking out,” calling for shutting things down again. “I think they’re disappointed with the good news,” Malone said.

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Admitting your product is worthless, in an attempt to make even more money. And people will fall for it.

BioNTech CEO Says ‘Even Triple-Vaccinated’ Transmit COVID (SAC)

While President Joe Biden and his coronavirus officials are bullying Americans into getting vaccinated or they will face a “deadly winter” for themselves and their families, “one of the scientists behind Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 show said Monday that he believes vaccines alone will not be enough to fight the Omicron variant.” BioNTech CEO Ugur Sahin told French newspaper Le Monde “even triple-vaccinated people can transmit the disease, and they will have to be tested, especially around vulnerable people.” “With the Omicron variant becoming dominant, protective measures will remain essential, especially this winter” he added, who says they are working on yet another version of the vaccine specifically tailored for the Omicron variant that could possibly be available by March.


So according to an actual scientist in an actual science-based company, even being “triple-vaccinated” will not stop people from the winter of death that Biden claims will happen to only those who are not vaccinated. Not only will vaccines and boosters not guarantee you can hug grandma, but there will be yet another vaccine created to push down our throats in the coming months. Sahin says unfortunately those who received the original Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine will lose its efficacy over time. “It’s obvious we are far from the 95 percent effectiveness that we had against the initial virus. But after the third injection our vaccine seems to provide 70 percent or 75 percent protection against any form of the disease, which is still a good result for a vaccine in general — and I think we will be well beyond that for severe forms,” said Sahin.

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When the Wall Street Journal Editorial board turns on Fauci, maybe there’s still hope.

How Fauci and Collins Shut Down Covid Debate (WSJ Ed.)

In public, Anthony Fauci and Francis Collins urge Americans to “follow the science.” In private, the two sainted public-health officials schemed to quash dissenting views from top scientists. That’s the troubling but fair conclusion from emails obtained recently via the Freedom of Information Act by the American Institute for Economic Research. The tale unfolded in October 2020 after the launch of the Great Barrington Declaration, a statement by Harvard’s Martin Kulldorff, Oxford’s Sunetra Gupta and Stanford’s Jay Bhattacharya against blanket pandemic lockdowns. They favored a policy of what they called “focused protection” of high-risk populations such as the elderly or those with medical conditions. Thousands of scientists signed the declaration—if they were able to learn about it.

That didn’t please the lockdown consensus enforced by public-health officials and the press. Dr. Collins, the director of the National Institutes of Health until Sunday, sent an email on Oct. 8, 2020, to Dr. Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. “This proposal from the three fringe epidemiologists . . . seems to be getting a lot of attention – and even a co-signature from Nobel Prize winner Mike Leavitt at Stanford. There needs to be a quick and devastating published take down of its premises,” Dr. Collins wrote. “Is it underway?” These researchers weren’t fringe and neither was their opposition to quarantining society. But in the panic over the virus, these two voices of science used their authority to stigmatize dissenters and crush debate.

A week after his email, Dr. Collins spoke to the Washington Post about the Great Barrington Declaration. “This is a fringe component of epidemiology,” he said. “This is not mainstream science. It’s dangerous.” His message spread and the alternative strategy was dismissed in most precincts. Dr. Fauci replied to Dr. Collins that the takedown was underway. An article in Wired, a tech-news site, denied there was any scientific divide and argued lockdowns were a straw man—they weren’t coming back. If only it were true. The next month cases rose and restrictions returned. Dr. Fauci also emailed an article from the Nation, a left-wing magazine, and his staff sent him several more. The emails suggest a feedback loop: The media cited Dr. Fauci as an unquestionable authority, and Dr. Fauci got his talking points from the media. Facebook censored mentions of the Great Barrington Declaration. This is how groupthink works.

On CBS last month, Dr. Fauci said Republicans who criticize him are “really criticizing science, because I represent science. That’s dangerous.” He isn’t “science.” And it’s also dangerous for scientific officials to mobilize to quash dissent, without which it’s easy to make tragic mistakes. A scientific debate over pandemic policy was and still is in the public interest, especially during a once-in-a-century plague. Focused protection of nursing homes and other high-risk populations remains the policy road not taken during the pandemic. Perhaps this strategy wouldn’t have prevailed if a debate had been allowed. But it isn’t enough to repeat, as Dr. Collins did on Fox News Sunday, that advocates are “fringe epidemiologists who really did not have the credentials,” and that “hundreds of thousands of people would have died if we had followed that strategy.”

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“These are very disturbed people who have allowed a taste of power and influence to fuel an underlying narcissism.”

Fauci Says Unvaxxed Relatives Not Worthy of Family Christmas Gatherings (CTH)

Dr. Anthony Fauci is a thin-skinned, unstable ideologue with visions of grandiosity. He has wreaked havoc on our nation and permeated a major crisis on the global stage with his poor advice on COVID-19. He personifies a mentally and emotionally unstable person within his worldview. Fauci is representative of a group of psychologically unstable people who need a career operating in government systems and institutions, because they could never be successful in the private sector. They can only succeed in academia and institutions without merit-based structures.


These are very disturbed people who have allowed a taste of power and influence to fuel an underlying narcissism. Their disorder exhibits as vengeful bitterness, the result of adolescent isolation and no emotional balance. History will not look well upon Anthony Fauci any more than history reflects well upon Josef Mengele. In this short Q&A snippet, Anthony Fauci reveals his bitter worldview by saying unvaccinated people should be told to stay away from family events this Christmas. Notice the reference point of the response is that people should appreciate being in his presence.

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“..they control 61 per cent of the biomedical research on earth, so they control pretty much what gets funded.”

An Interview With Fauci’s Nemesis (Beck)

SB: Have you received any legal challenges from Anthony Fauci or Bill Gates? RFK:There is nothing in that book that is untruthful. Secondly, I would welcome a lawsuit from Bill Gates and Tony Fauci, and they know that that would be a giant strategic mistake. Even if I did put something in that book that was defamatory, I don’t think they would challenge it. They’ve got so much to lose from the truth. Their only viable strategy is silence.

SB: What kind of reaction have you had from MSM? RFK: There’s no reviews in the papers [despite the book’s No 1 best-seller status]. I am now being targeted with a barrage of ad hominem articles about me, but they don’t even mention the book, which is weird. They do not want to talk about this book because it’s full of truth. The truth is their deadliest enemy.

SB: Have you ever met either Fauci or Gates? RFK:: I’ve met Tony Fauci. Our paths have crossed for many years. I’ve been working on vaccine issues since 2005 so I’ve seen him in action on many occasions. In 2016, President Trump asked me to run a vaccine safety commission. To do that I had a series of meetings with the regulatory leadership including Fauci and Gates. One of my challenges to them was to say: ‘You have never done a single double-blind placebo-controlled trial for any of the 72 recommended vaccines being given to children.’ Publicly, Fauci was saying I had not been telling the truth about this. I said to him: ‘Show me one trial for any of those 72 jabs.’ He made a show of looking through the files he’d brought with him. He said: ‘We don’t have them here; we’ll send them to you.’ He never did send them to me and a year later I sued them. We filed a suit asking them to show us any of those studies they had and after a year of litigation they came back and said we don’t have any. Ironically, Fauci is now saying that he can’t use ivermectin or hydroxychloroquine to treat Covid without back-up from a double-blind placebo-controlled trials.

SB: The impression I get of Fauci is that he knows what to say in public but he seems like he has a dark side to him. The only reason for providing toxic drugs to people, like remdesivir, that has been so harmful to people with Covid, is because you know many who receive it will die. Does he know that? RFK: Of course he does. He had remdesivir in a study in Africa to see if it worked against Ebola. In 2019, the Data and Safety Monitoring Review Board (DSMB) monitored his work. Two months later, the board was saying it’s not safe, it’s killing people. It’s produced by the pharmaceutical company Gilead which Bill Gates has a huge stake in. Coronavirus does not kill 50 per cent of people who get it whereas trials show that over 50 per cent of people treated with remdesivir died.

SB: In your book you talk about two types of scientists, those who allow Fauci to dictate their careers and those who don’t want to be compromised, but he seems to be very effective at crushing dissent. RFK: Between him, Gates and Jeremy Farrar, director of the Wellcome Trust [part of the Trust’s £29.1billion annual budget comes from Gates], they control 61 per cent of the biomedical research on earth, so they control pretty much what gets funded. Also, that funding power gives them the power to kill studies they do not want and to ruin scientists who are trying to do those studies and to bankrupt universities. I show how that works in the book. If you had a young scientist at let’s say UCLA Medical School, [University of California, Los Angeles] who says why don’t we study whether the vaccines are causing injury by doing a cluster analysis of medical records?

That’s an easy study to do. His dean will get a call from one of Tony Fauci’s flunkeys at the NIH [National Institutes of Health run by Fauci] saying you’d better stop that guy from doing the study, Tony doesn’t want it done. UCLA, like all the medical schools in this country, is getting hundreds of millions of dollars from Fauci and the NIH and are completely dependent on the royalties from pharmaceutical products that Fauci develops in his lab, farms out to the universities for phase 1 and phase 2 trials, then brings in a pharmaceutical company to produce the drug who then shares the patent with the university. Everybody is on the hook; everybody is making money and all of them have a huge incentive not to talk.

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Important to remember: “Every single attempt at vaccination against a coronavirus in the past in both man and beast has failed to produce durable immunity.”

Here’s A Reality Check (Denninger)

Pfizer has disclosed in their own data that for young people the shots are as dangerous, as measured in hospitalization, for ***** as they are for caused myocarditis. Since infection is never certain but inoculation, once you take it, is, there was never an argument for authorizing these jabs in healthy young people simply on the math. We did it anyway and we’re still advocating it. That is just one condition but let’s be clear: If you jab your kid you’re putting them at equal or greater risk of being hospitalized from one side effect of the ******* alone as from *****-19 itself. If you do that as a parent you’re a monster. If you do it as a young adult on your own absent some individualized risk you’re stupid.


Anyone who believes that an agent injected into the muscle of the arm that can and does sometimes cause inflammation of the heart will not also cause inflammation of other tissues and, through doing so, also cause damage to other tissues has rocks in their head. The scope of that additional damage is completely unknown because we’re not performing any surveillance nor did we originally. We have never, for example, taken a group of 100 people, pulled full blood work including markers for inflammation, cardiac damage and others, then vaccinated them and repeated said tests on a 2, 4, 8 and 16 week interval to determine if we got negative metabolic changes and if we did, whether they were transient or durable. Nobody knows because we never did the work.

But it is entirely reasonable to expect that additional risk of stroke, heart attack, pulmonary embolism and more, all of which are life-altering, produce permanent disability and can be fatal, would be made materially more-likely by an agent that causes myocarditis. Indeed that would be a reasonable medical presumption; inflammation in the body is a known contributing factor to strokes and VTE which encompasses pulmonary embolisms. Given the billions that these companies have made you’d think we would have required such in-detail tracing, collection of information and publication of the results. We did not then and still haven’t. Omicron has now thrown mud in everyone’s eye by doing exactly what every coronavirus has done through time — mutationally evaded the neutralization potential of vaccination.


Every single attempt at vaccination against a coronavirus in the past in both man and beast has failed to produce durable immunity. Several attempts have resulted in wildly-enhanced disease. We’re seeing the latter now with attack rates in vaccinated people exceeding that for unvaccinated with Omicron. The only good news is that it may be true that Omicron is less-virulent; there is some early evidence that it is much less replication-competent in the lungs. That’s a good thing because upper respiratory infection is not serious; it is the lung infection that gets you. In other words it may be that Omicron is a nasty cold. That it is more-able to infect vaccinated people than not is troubling but if its less-virulent it may not matter — indeed it may be a blessing. We don’t yet know and won’t for a few months, and that assumes we get honest data — which we may not.

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The moment such people say this, you better prepare for number six. Israel just officially announced number 4. Your country will follow soon.

Prepare For Fourth Covid Jab, Tony Blair Institute Says (RT)

The research institute founded by former UK prime minister Tony Blair has called on the government to create a command-and-control team that could help it remain “ahead of the curve” and quickly roll out more vaccines. In a paper published on Tuesday, the Tony Blair Institute said the British government should seek to develop infrastructure that would allow it to mobilize new vaccination campaigns within 48 hours. With the prospect of yet more Covid variants emerging, it highlighted that “a fourth dose of the vaccine may soon be needed.” The institute contended that the ability to respond to future Covid strain outbreaks would depend on whether administrations could implement “a better approach to ‘command and control’ through a strong and coherent public-health emergency operations center.”


The non-profit organization said the emergence of Omicron highlighted the fact that governments are often forced to react, rather than working to “stay ahead of the curve.” “To achieve this, we need to take decisions fast, take them in a coordinated manner, and execute effectively and at speed. Be prepared at all times,” the paper reads. Noting examples from other nations, the institute said the UK’s Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation should be doing more, including “rapidly” approving the use of Covid-19 vaccines in children aged five to 11 in an effort to reduce transmission.

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As member countries ponder a 3 month gap between jabs/boosters, the EU goes for 9?!

Interesting that the “primary vaccination schedule” is still just 2 jabs.

EU Sets Binding 9 Month Validity Of Covid-19 Travel Pass (R.)

The European Commission on Tuesday adopted rules that will make the European Union Covid-19 certificate valid for travel nine months after the completion of the primary vaccination schedule. The proposal comes as several EU states introduce additional requirements on travellers in a bid to reduce the spread of the Omicron coronavirus variant. EU Justice Commissioner Didier Reynders told Reuters the EU Commission was against additional requirements, and was assessing the measures. The new rules will be binding on the 27 EU states from Feb. 1. The rule can be blocked by a qualified majority of EU governments or a simple majority of European Parliament members, but officials have said there is sufficient support for it. The rule replaces a non-binding recommendation the EU Commission put forward in November.

Once the rule is effective, EU states will be obliged to let fully vaccinated travellers with a valid pass access their territory. However, as an exception justified by a deteriorating situation, they could still impose further requirements, such as negative tests or quarantines, as long as they are proportionate. Seven EU states are currently requiring fully vaccinated travellers from other EU countries to also show a negative Covid-19 test upon arrival, measures some see as damaging the credibility of the EU pass. The states are Italy, Greece, Ireland, Portugal, Latvia, Cyprus and Austria. “We prefer to use for the free movement in Europe only the certificate without additional measures,” Reynders said. He noted that the additional requirements could be justified by concerns caused by the spread of the Omicron variant, but governments had to prove they were proportionate and necessary.

[..] A primary vaccination schedule for Covid-19 is currently composed in the EU of two shots of vaccines produced by Pfizer-BioNTech , AstraZeneca and Moderna, or a single jab of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

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“The vaccine refusenik hunters will receive a wage of 2774 euros, which will be paid 14 times a year, making an annual income of 38,863 euros.”

Austria Hiring People to “Hunt Down Vaccine Refusers” (SN)

The Austrian government is hiring people to “hunt down vaccine refusers,” according to a report published by Blick. Yes, really. The burden for enforcing the fines unjabbed Austrians will have to pay as part of their punishment will fall to their employers, necessitating a new army of ‘inspectors’ to ensure that process is running smoothly. The city of Linz, which is home to 200,000 inhabitants, has a relatively low vaccination rate of 63 per cent. In response, “Linz now wants to hire people who are supposed to hunt down vaccine refusers,” reports Swiss news outlet Blick. The role of the inspectors will be to check on “whether those who do not get vaccinated really pay for it.” The vaccine refusenik hunters will receive a wage of 2774 euros, which will be paid 14 times a year, making an annual income of 38,863 euros.


Nice work if you can get it. “The job includes, among other things, the creation of penal orders as well as the processing of appeals,” according to the report, adding that workers need to be “resilient” and willing to work a lot of overtime. The jobs are only open to Austrian citizens, all of whom will either have to be vaccinated against or fully recovered from COVID. As we previously highlighted, the unvaccinated in Austria could find themselves imprisoned for a year under a new administrative law that would force them to pay for their own internment. Austrians who don’t get vaccinated by February face fines of up to €7,200 ($8,000) for non-compliance, and those who refuse to pay would also face a 12 month jail sentence.

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It’s clear who the idiot is here, but then again he’s just another propaganda victim, like 99.9% of people.

Ryanair CEO Calls For Unvaccinated “Idiots” To Be Ostracised From Society (SN)

Michael O’Leary, the CEO of Ryanair has declared that anyone who remains unvaccinated should be completely cut off from society, including not being allowed to travel, go to the supermarket to get food, or the pharmacy to get medicine. “If you’re not vaccinated, you shouldn’t be allowed in the hospital, you shouldn’t be allowed to fly, you shouldn’t be allowed on the London Underground, and you shouldn’t be allowed in the local supermarket or your pharmacy either,” the airline executive said, as reported by The Telegraph. “You can sit at home and you know, get your deliveries of medicines and food. But you should not, you know, go to work or go on public transport unless you have a vaccine certificate,” O’Leary clarified.

O’Leary admitted that making vaccines compulsory is “an infringement of your civil liberties,” but added that the way around it is “you simply make life so difficult. Or [make it that] there are lots of things that you can’t do unless you get vaccinated.” Calling the unvaccinated “idiots,” the Ryanir boss further stated “I don’t think that governments should permit those people who are not vaccinated to go and infect everybody else.” O’Leary sardonically stated “We recognise the rights of everybody to decide not to get vaccinated if you so want. If you personally object to vaccination, because it’s some huge government/big pharma conspiracy; apart from the fact that you would be plainly an idiot, we respect your right to be an idiot.”

Ryanair was previously punished by the advertising standards agency in the UK after running a campaign promoting the sale of summer flights with a “Jab & Go!” gimmick despite having previously stated that it wouldn’t require passengers to take a COVID vaccine before they fly. As we previously reported, other airlines have indicated they will not allow passengers who haven’t had the vaccine to fly, including Singapore Airlines, which became the first carrier to officially launch a COVID passport.

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I’ll admit, I’m getting confused.

Judge Blocks Biden’s Vaccine Mandate for Federal Contractors in 10 States (ET)

A federal judge in Missouri has issued a temporary hold on the Biden administration’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate for federal contractors in 10 U.S. states while litigation plays out. “We just beat the Biden Administration in court again,” Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt announced on Twitter late Monday. “This afternoon, we obtained a preliminary injunction against the vaccine mandate on federal contractors, halting enforcement of that mandate in Missouri and the other states in our coalition.” The preliminary injunction, issued by U.S. Magistrate Judge David Noce, applies to Alaska, Arkansas, Iowa, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming.


Schmitt and Nebraska Attorney General Doug Peterson, both Republicans, on Oct. 29 co-led the 10 states in suing the Biden administration over the mandate, calling it “unconstitutional, unlawful, and unwise.” “It will not harm the federal government to maintain the status quo while the courts decide the issues of the President’s authority and the implications for federalism. The Court concludes that, on balance, consideration of the harms and the public interest weigh in favor of a preliminary injunction,” reads the Monday preliminary injunction order from U.S. Magistrate Judge David Noce. A nationwide preliminary injunction is already in place blocking the Biden administration’s vaccine mandate for federal contractors, after a federal court in Georgia on Dec. 7 granted the injunction in a separate seven-state lawsuit led by Georgia.

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This should be checked for every country.

Covid Modelling Shows The Most Worrying Scenario, Not The Most Likely (G.)

Much of the pandemic modelling to make news headlines since Covid-19 hit has depicted concerning scenarios involving high case numbers and hospitalisations. On Thursday, modelling from the University of NSW and cited by NSW health minister Brad Hazzard found Covid-19 cases in the state could reach 25,000 a day by the end of January. The latest modelling to raise alarm bells came from the Doherty Institute and was leaked to the media on Tuesday after being sent to politicians ahead of a meeting of national cabinet on Wednesday. It said Australia could see 200,000 new Covid cases a day by late January or early February. Early into the pandemic in 2020, other models predicted “hundreds of thousands” of Australian deaths, while health workers in NSW were told to prepare for 8,000 deaths in the first-wave.

But these are worst-case scenario models and are just one scenario out of dozens of different scenarios that are calculated by epidemiologists and biostatisticians. What is often lost in the reporting of these worst-case models is that they rarely ever eventuate, but are calculated to allow governments to see what might happen if they did nothing at all to control an outbreak, and to plan accordingly. The leaked Doherty Institute modelling projecting 200,000 cases came with an important caveat; this would only eventuate if nothing was done, including if people did not change their behaviour at all of their own accords. It also assumed no change to the pace of booster roll-outs, and that only very basic restrictions such as requiring masks in hospitals are maintained.

[..] Ahead of national cabinet meeting on Wednesday the chair of the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee, Prof. Paul Kelly, said of the 200,000 figure “presents one of the worst case of all potential scenarios including assumptions that the Omicron variant is as severe as the Delta variant, an absence of hospital surge capacity, a highly limited booster program, no change to baseline public health and social measures and an absence of spontaneous behaviour change in the face of rising case numbers”. “None of these five assumptions represent the likely state of events, let alone all of them together, therefore presenting that scenario as the likely scenario that will occur is highly misleading.”

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“One can only assume that the provincial health authorities’ relationship-splitting social engineering interventions will increase loneliness and isolation and associated risks for depression, anxiety, PTSD, self-harm, suicide, and drug toxicity for all. This is psychology 101.”

A Letter from a Concerned Psychologist (Nicassio)

Attachment and the need to belong refer to the fundamental human need to maintain close social bonds and stay connected in psychologically and physically safe relationships from cradle to grave. One of the major contributions of psychology research has been to demonstrate that maintaining healthy and secure attachment and belonging is more than a psychological need: Attachment and belonging are primary and critical determinants of mental and physical health. Research in social psychology and neuroscience demonstrates that human beings’ neurobiological response to social exclusion mirrors their response to physical pain and suggests that social exclusion is one of the most painful and threatening events a person can experience.

While it’s not surprising that social exclusion and disturbances in attachment lead to negative emotions and thoughts, what’s less intuitive is that a large body of research has demonstrated that social exclusion is toxic to humans, leading to enduring changes in the brain and biological systems that regulate stress, weakening of the immune system, mental and physical illness, and earlier death. To date the narrative around social restrictions has been, “Well yes, social isolation is hard but restrictions are for the greater good!” But let’s be clear: The newest restrictions are not your run-of-the-mill isolation requirements. These restrictions require British Columbians to selectively exclude and marginalize their unvaccinated friends and loved ones during the most significant season for social gatherings and celebrations.

This is painful for everyone involved, but especially those who will be excluded and spending the holidays alone. It is also qualitatively different from previous social isolation requirements where we were all in it together. Sadly, social exclusion is actually an extremely harmful form of bullying. It’s clear to anyone with an understanding of psychology that these restrictions will cause relational fracturing and personal suffering that will last well beyond the holiday season. Not only is there strong scientific evidence that social exclusion leads to increased morbidity and mortality, but research consistently demonstrates that social exclusion, loneliness, and isolation are predictors of self-harm and suicide. The latest data have also shown a huge escalation in drug toxicity deaths since social restrictions began and this is the tip of the iceberg. One can only assume that the provincial health authorities’ relationship-splitting social engineering interventions will increase loneliness and isolation and associated risks for depression, anxiety, PTSD, self-harm, suicide, and drug toxicity for all. This is psychology 101.

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As we prepare to get rid of Fauci, let’s do the same with Victoria Nuland. Make the world a better place.

Americans Warned About Risk Of Russian Invasion Of Ukraine (RT)

American citizens considering traveling to Ukraine have been advised by Washington to reconsider the trip, citing persistent claims that Russia could be planning an all-out offensive against its Eastern European neighbor. On Monday, the US State Department updated its recommendations for the country, warning that “citizens should be aware of reports that Russia is planning for significant military action against Ukraine.” Americans were informed that this “would severely impact the US Embassy’s ability to provide consular services,” including assisting people in departing from the region in an emergency. The travel notice also continued to advise against travel due to the Covid-19 risk in Ukraine, a recommendation in place for several months.


Guidance urging US citizens to rethink their journey to the former Soviet republic because of its high rates of coronavirus infection had been issued at the end of September. The advisory came after Kiev’s intelligence services and Western officials sounded the alarm in recent weeks, insisting that Moscow could soon launch an all-out offensive against its neighbor. However, the Kremlin has repeatedly rejected the accusations, instead arguing that the prospect of Ukraine becoming a member of NATO destabilizes the situation. Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova warned at the beginning of December that the further expansion of the organization toward Russia is a red line, and that Ukraine’s hopes to be admitted were unacceptable. She accused the US of pulling Kiev into the orbit of the military bloc and turning it into a “bridgehead” of confrontation with Russia, which she warned could cause conflict on the European continent.

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“Goldman Sachs Bank USA had $387 billion in assets versus $48 trillion (yes, trillion) in notional (face amount) derivatives.”

The Fed Gets Its Ducks in a Row for the Next Wall Street Bailout (Martens)

Last Friday, with the public’s attention diverted to the surge in Omicron variant cases of COVID in the U.S. and holiday travelers’ attention focused on the safety of air travel and family gatherings, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York quietly announced, in a one sentence statement, that it was adding the following three federally-insured banks to its list of counterparties for its newly-minted $500 billion Standing Repo Facility: Citibank, Goldman Sachs Bank USA, and the New York Branch of Mizuho Bank. If you’re stunned that Goldman Sachs is allowed to own a federally-insured bank under existing U.S. law, see our previous report: Goldman Sachs’ Rich Man’s Bank Backstopped by You and Me. If you’re stunned that a New York branch of Mizuho Bank, part of the Japanese conglomerate Mizuho Financial Group, is able to have federal deposit insurance backstopped by the U.S. taxpayer, welcome to the world of borderless global banking for the one percent.

These three banks have a number of things in common: (1) each financial institution already has a broker-dealer affiliate that is already one of the Fed’s 24 primary dealers that participates in the Fed’s repo operations; (2) each of the three banks’ primary dealer affiliates took large, secret loans from the Fed’s repo facility when credit collapsed on Wall Street on September 17, 2019; (3) all three institutions have trillions of dollars in exposure to derivatives according to data from the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC). If all three banks already have broker-dealer affiliates participating in the Fed’s repo loan facility, why would another affiliate be added? The first thought that comes to mind is the fact that the Fed puts a daily cap on the dollar amount that each counterparty can borrow per day. By having two affiliates as counterparties, the amount that can be borrowed is doubled.

Why would these three banks need to have a sugar daddy at the Fed to loan them money in a financial crisis? Because all three banks have huge exposure to derivatives. According to the latest report from the OCC, as of September 30, 2021, Goldman Sachs Bank USA had $387 billion in assets versus $48 trillion (yes, trillion) in notional (face amount) derivatives. Citibank had $1.7 trillion in assets versus $44 trillion in notional derivatives. Mizuho’s bank holding company had $48.8 billion in assets versus $6 trillion in derivatives.

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Musk is … different, and that is refreshing.

“If You Could Die Of Irony, She Would Be Dead”: Musk Slams Liz Warren (ZH)

Elon Musk just sat down with the guys from the Babylon Bee for a 54-minute interview, where the Tesla and SpaceX founder savaged Sen. Liz Warren, and described woke culture as a “mind virus.” “You were pretty mean to Senator Warren there on Twitter recently,” said Babylon Bee EIC Kyle Mann. “Ya slammed her man.””Please don’t call the manager on me, Senator Karen,” he continued – citing Musk’s December 14th response to Warren slamming him for not paying ‘enough’ taxes. To which Musk replied: “She struck first, obviously. She called me a freeloader and a grifter who doesn’t pay taxes, basically. And – I’m literally paying the most tax that any individual in history has ever paid, this year, ever. And she doesn’t pay tax… basically at all. And her salary is paid for by the taxpayer, like me.”

“Could you even use the term irony, would that work?” asked one of the Bee guys. “If you could die of irony, she would be dead.” Musk also opined on woke culture – calling it a “mind virus,” and “arguably one of the biggest threats to modern civilization.” “Wokeness wants to make comedy illegal,” Musk continued, adding “Do we want a humorless society that is simply rife with condemnation, and hate? At its heart, wokeness is divisive, exclusionary and hateful. It basically gives mean people a shield to be cruel, armored in false virtue.” When asked why Musk wasn’t appearing on, say, CNN, he replied: “I’m not perverted enough?” perhaps referencing their recent pedo outbreak.

Bee CEO Seth Dillon asked Musk if he gets sick of people badgering him about his wealth, to which he said that until he sold stock, he maintained relatively little cash balances – and that he happens to own 20% of a company that people decided was worth a trillion dollars. He also defended ‘not paying taxes,’ explaining that in 2017 he overpaid, which netted out in 2018, and that since the majority of his wealth is in stock anyway that he wasn’t incurring taxable events. “What am I supposed to do, send shares to the government, somehow?” said Musk.

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