Dec 312022
 
 December 31, 2022  Posted by at 9:30 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  70 Responses »


Edvard Munch Ashes 1894

 

Forecast 2023 — Get Out of the Way if You Can’t Lend a Hand (Kunstler)
Ukraine Lashes Out At Orbán’s Pro-Peace Stance On Russia-Ukraine Conflict (ZH)
Zelensky Gives His Government More Censorship Powers (RTN)
Ukraine Is ‘First Multipolar’ Conflict – Dugin (RT)
MIT Adopts Free Speech Resolution (Turley)
Fauci Leaves a Broken Agency for His Successor (Makary)
Trump Tax Returns Released By House Committee: He Paid Little In Taxes (NBC)
Trump’s Tax Returns Reveal President’s Foreign Bank Accounts (Az.)
President Bites Agent (Turley)
Ex-Stripper Seeks To Change Name Of Hunter’s Child To Biden (RT)
Biden Family Disowns Hunter’s 4-Year-Old Daughter (ZH)
Uncharged J6 Witness Ray Epps Transcript Released (ZH)
He’s Cooked… (Denninger)

 

 

 

 

Anti Energy

 

 

 

 

 

 

A man who dares to waste one hour of time has not discovered the value of life.
– Charles Darwin

 

 

 

 

“Will mysteries be revealed in 2023? Personally, I think so. Things are lining up in that direction, though who knows whether the damage can even be reversed at this point.”

Forecast 2023 — Get Out of the Way if You Can’t Lend a Hand (Kunstler)

“The powerful are panicking, and so they should. Their secrets are leaking.” —Miranda Devine

“It’s all just snake oil. We want to save the planet, and the life upon it, but we’re not willing to pay the price and bear the consequences. So we make up a narrative that feels good and run with it.” — Raul Ilargi Meijer

“2023 could be a pivotal year for USA if the pervasive lies can be exposed, digested, and believed. All that exposure has to happen amidst continuing boondoggles toward the Great Reset agenda.” – Truman Verdun

“More borrowing only ever makes sense if you are expecting a larger economy in the future. All economic expansion is based on energy. Countries with energy can expand, those without cannot.” — Chris Martenson

“To be an enemy to America can be dangerous, but to be a friend is fatal.” — Henry Kissinger

It’s hard to contemplate 2023 without spiraling into nausea, tachycardia, and cold sweat. But it is an inescapable duty here to lay out the probabilities ahead. I’ve been doing this forecast thing for some years now, and, of course, I am often wrong, so take some solace in that and relax. Maybe the new year will be all unicorns, rainbows, talking gerbils, and candied violets. 2022 sure was a cold shower. The long emergency I talk so much about finally got up to cruising speed, with the ectoplasmic “Joe Biden” revving our country into economic, political, and cultural collapse — a hat-trick of calamity — and he did it more swiftly and directly than any emperor managed in late-day Rome, with policies and actions 180-degrees contra to America’s public interest — cheered on by a thinking class that had obviously lost it consensual mind.

Was it simply to do the opposite of what the loathed and detested Mr. Trump would do? Could it be that simple or that automatic? The thinking class’s eyes have a zombified glaze these days. It’s obvious, you might agree, that “Joe Biden” is not in charge of anything, really. He’s an animatronic figure programmed to read a teleprompter and not much else. Half the time, he can’t even find his way off-stage after doing that one trick. The claque pulling his strings just may be the crew you see around him (you know, WYSIWYG): Susan Rice, Ron Klain, Jake Sullivan, Antony Blinken, Victoria Nuland, and company. Ms. Rice has kept herself completely hidden backstage at the White House for two years. Nobody ever hears about her or sees her. Weird, a little bit, for the Director of the Domestic Policy Council.

Or else, are there puppeteers deeper in the shadows, say, “JB’s” former boss Barack Obama, Der Schwabenklaus and his WEF retinue, Bill Gates and other tech billionaires, the “systemically important” bankers, George Soros…? Or some coven of super-elite warlocks we’d never heard of? The US leadership dynamic is truly mystifying and has been for two whole years. Will mysteries be revealed in 2023? Personally, I think so. Things are lining up in that direction, though who knows whether the damage can even be reversed at this point. And now onto the shape of things to come….

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“Ukraine can continue fighting only as long as the United States supports them with money and weapons. If the Americans want peace, then there will be peace.”

Ukraine Lashes Out At Orbán’s Pro-Peace Stance On Russia-Ukraine Conflict (ZH)

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has been harshly criticized by the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry, according to remarks published on the ministry’s website on Tuesday, Dec. 27, German news agency dpa reports. Orbán’s statements “demonstrate a pathological disregard for Ukraine and the Ukrainian people who are fighting against Russian aggression,” the Ukrainian ministry said, accusing the Hungarian leader of “political short-sightedness.” As Denis Albert reports at Remix News, the comments came in response to a statement by Orbán that the war could end if the United States stopped supplying arms to Ukraine. Orbán was working in this way towards Ukraine’s defeat, even if it would increase the danger of Russian aggression directed at Hungary, the Ukrainian ministry said.


“The Hungarian leader should ask himself if he wants peace,” the ministry said in a statement. In an earlier interview Orbán said, “Ukraine can continue fighting only as long as the United States supports them with money and weapons. If the Americans want peace, then there will be peace.” As Remix News reported, in a recent interview Orbán said that while it is important for his government that Russia poses no security threat, continued economic relations is essential for not only Hungary, but also for the entire European economy. “The answer to the question of whether we are on the right or wrong side of history is that we are on the Hungarian side of history. We support and help Ukraine, it is in our interest to preserve a sovereign Ukraine, and it is in our interest that Russia does not pose a security threat to Europe, but it is not in our interest to give up all economic relations with Russia. We are looking at these issues through Hungarian glasses, not through anyone else’s,” Orbán said.

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“A state that would apply such provisions simply has no place in the European Union..”

Zelensky Gives His Government More Censorship Powers (RTN)

On Thursday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky signed off a controversial bill that substantially increases the government’s regulatory authority over the news media. The new law will give the government new censorship powers and is a fresh blow to press freedoms in the country. The legislation significantly increases the powers of Ukraine’s state broadcasting regulator to allow it to regulate both the print and online news media. Further, it allows for fines to be imposed on media outlets, their licenses to be revoked without due process, and even some websites to be temporarily blocked without going through the courts. Finally, it gives the regulator authority to order search giants such as Google and other social media platforms to remove content.

Zelensky’s actions are already being criticized by press freedom advocates. As this bill moved through Parliament, members of international organizations such as the European Federation of Journalists and the Committee to Protect Journalists expressed their concerns about its provisions. “The coercive regulation envisaged by the bill and in the hands of a regulator totally controlled by the government is worthy of the worst authoritarian regimes. It must be withdrawn. A state that would apply such provisions simply has no place in the European Union,” said EFJ General Secretary Ricardo Gutiérrez. “Media regulation should be implemented by a body independent of the government and its objective should be media independence, not media control,” Gutiérrez added.


“Ukraine’s media bill seriously imperils press freedom in the country by tightening government control over information at a time when citizens need it the most,” remarked Gulnoza Said, CPJ’s Europe and Central Asia program coordinator, in a statement. “Ukrainian legislators should abandon the bill, or at least pause its progress in parliament until the European Union can weigh in with recommendations.” Members of Ukraine’s National Union of Journalists strongly opposed the bill due to its potential to reduce fundamental freedoms within the country. Nevertheless, Yevheniia Kravchuk, the deputy chairperson for Parliament’s Information Policy Committee contradicted those worries by stating that Ukraine’s media legislation had not been updated since the absence of the internet 16 years prior. This new broader bill was needed to bring their media laws up to date and provide greater access to accurate information and technologies.

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“Multipolarity is “not against the West as such,” Dugin said, but “against the claim of the West to be the model, to be the unique example” of history and human understanding..”

Ukraine Is ‘First Multipolar’ Conflict – Dugin (RT)

The conflict in Ukraine is the world’s “first multipolar war,” in which Russia is fighting for the right of every civilization to choose its own path while the West wishes to maintain its totalitarian hegemonic globalism, Aleksandr Dugin told RT in an exclusive interview on Friday. Multipolarity is “not against the West as such,” Dugin said, but “against the claim of the West to be the model, to be the unique example” of history and human understanding. The current Russophobia and hatred of Russia, he argued, are a relic of Cold War thinking and the “bipolar understanding of the architecture of international relations.” When the Soviet Union self-destructed in December 1991, it left the “global Western liberal civilization” in control of the world, Dugin noted.

This hegemon is now refusing to accept the future in which it would be “not one of the two, but one of [the] few poles,” put in its proper place as “just a part, not the whole, of humanity.” Dugin described the West as “pure totalitarian liberalism,” which pretends to have the absolute truth and seeks to impose it on everyone. “There is inherent racism in Western liberalism,” the philosopher told RT’s Donald Courter, because it “identifies the Western historical, political, cultural, experience [as] universal.” “Nothing universal exists in multipolarity,” Dugin insisted, explaining that each civilization can and should develop its own values. Russia specifically needs to overcome centuries of Western ideological dominance, he said, and create something “new, fresh, creative” that would nonetheless stand “in direct refutation of the Western liberal hegemony, against open society, against individualism, against liberal democracy.”

He rejected the “dogmatic” approaches of Marxism, fascism or liberalism to politics and economics, saying that Russia ought to strive for a “holistic” approach in which the spiritual would be more important than the material. Obsession with material goods ends up enslaving people, Dugin told RT. Dugin lamented the December 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union as a “suicide” perpetrated by the power-hungry bureaucrats in Moscow. He echoed Russian President Vladimir Putin’s description of it as a “geopolitical disaster” and described it as a major victory for “Sea Power.” While the USSR was the polar opposite of the Russian Empire in terms of ideology, he explained, in geopolitical terms the two were one and the same, the strongest power in what English geographer Harold Mackinder described as the global Heartland.

While some Western observers have dubbed Dugin “Putin’s brain,” the 60-year-old philosopher and author has no official relationship with the Kremlin. He is an outspoken supporter of the current military operation in Ukraine – whose independence he considers a Western imperial project aimed against Russian sovereignty. Dugin’s daughter Darya, 29, was assassinated in August by a car bomb planted by Ukrainian agents. Though Kiev has officially denied it, US intelligence officials later said they believe someone in the Ukrainian government was responsible.

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MIT Adopts Free Speech Resolution: “We Cannot Prohibit Speech as Offensive or Injurious.”

MIT Adopts Free Speech Resolution (Turley)

We recently discussed schools joining the University of Chicago free speech alliance. Now, the faculty of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have adopted a resolution defending freedom of speech and expression, including speech deemed “offensive or injurious.” It is a triumph for free speech. However, while 98 faculty voted for the resolution, 52 professors voted against the free speech principles. The Free Expression Statement is a balanced affirmation of the essential role of free speech in higher education. “A commitment to free expression includes hearing and hosting speakers, including those whose views or opinions may not be shared by many members of the MIT community and may be harmful to some. This commitment includes the freedom to criticize and peacefully protest speakers to whom one may object, but it does not extend to suppressing or restricting such speakers from expressing their views. Debate and deliberation of controversial ideas are hallmarks of the Institute’s educational and research missions and are essential to the pursuit of truth, knowledge, equity, and justice.”

What is unnerving is that a third of the faculty disagreed with the resolution despite the following reservation: “MIT does not protect direct threats, harassment, plagiarism, or other speech that falls outside the boundaries of the First Amendment. Moreover, the time, place, and manner of protected expression, including organized protests, may be restrained so as not to disrupt the essential activities of the Institute.” However, the statement makes the key acknowledgment that “we cannot prohibit speech that some experience as offensive or injurious.” That is clearly unacceptable for many in academic. Silencing opposing views or voices has become a core principle for many professors who now refer to free speech as an ever present danger on campuses. MIT has not always stood by free speech. As we previously discussed, the university yielded to cancel culture by barring a guest lecture to be given by University of Chicago geophysicist Dorian Abbot in 2021.

MIT also attracted criticism over abandoning standardized testing to achieve greater diversity. It later reversed that decision. The new resolution is a victory for the “MIT Free Speech Alliance,” which has fought to defend free speech against a growing number of faculty. University of Chicago emeritus biology Professor Jerry Coyne raised some good-faith objections on his Why Evolution Is True blog, including the resolution “calling for ‘civility and mutual respect’, as well as ‘considering the possibility of offense and injury’. You simply cannot have free speech without offense and injury. Abbot’s invitation provoked precisely such offense and injury, with many people supporting his deplatforming.” However, the references are part of a graph that refers to the personal responsibility of faculty to maintain civility and mutual respect. It follows an express protection for offensive speech:

“We cannot prohibit speech that some experience as offensive or injurious. At the same time, MIT deeply values civility, mutual respect, and uninhibited, wide-open debate. In fostering such debate, we have a responsibility to express ourselves in ways that consider the prospect of offense and injury and the risk of discouraging others from expressing their own views. This responsibility complements, and does not conflict with, the right to free expression. Even robust disagreements shall not be liable to official censure or disciplinary action. This applies broadly. For example, when MIT leaders speak on matters of public interest, whether in their own voice or in the name of MIT, this should always be understood as being open to debate by the broader MIT community.”

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“..we still don’t have randomized trials for so many drug recommendations, including the new bivalent vaccine, COVID vaccine boosters in young people, the optimal vaccine dosing interval, and even the antiviral drug Paxlovid in vaccinated people.”

Fauci Leaves a Broken Agency for His Successor (Makary)

After 54 years at the NIH, tomorrow marks Dr. Anthony Fauci’s last day in office as director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID). While many were angered by his changing and conflicting recommendations, I am not. They are mere symptoms of a much larger and deeper problem. Dr. Fauci’s agency failed to promptly fund key research during the pandemic. That research would have abruptly ended many of the COVID controversies that divided our country. In a study of NIH funding published in The BMJ, my Johns Hopkins colleagues and I found that in the first year of the pandemic, it took the NIH an average of five months to give money to researchers after they were awarded a COVID grant. This should be unacceptable during a health emergency.

Consider the question of how COVID spread—was it airborne or spread on surfaces? (Remember all those people wiping down their groceries?) It lingered as an open question without good research for months, as Fauci spent hundreds of hours on television opining on the matter. Finally, on August 17, 2021—a year and a half after COVID lockdowns began—Dr. Fauci’s agency released results of a study showing the disease was airborne. Thanks for that. The announcement on the NIAID website, titled “NIH Hamster Study Evaluates Airborne and Fomite Transmission of SARS-CoV-2” came 18 months too late. Imagine if, in February 2020, Dr. Fauci had marshaled his $6 billion budget, vast laboratory facilities, and teams of experts to conduct a definitive lab experiment to establish that COVID was airborne.

On this question and many others throughout the pandemic, our problem was not that the science changed—it’s that it wasn’t done. NIH funding for COVID research was also erratic. The NIH spent almost $1.2 billion on long COVID research, but virtually nothing on masks, natural immunity, COVID in children, or vaccine complications. Ironically, the NIH spent more than twice as much on aging research as it did on COVID research in the first year of the pandemic, according to my team’s analysis. I’m all for aging research, but not when a novel virus is killing thousands of Americans per day. A randomized controlled trial is the gold-standard method to establish a drug’s effectiveness. Yet remarkably, for COVID, we still don’t have randomized trials for so many drug recommendations, including the new bivalent vaccine, COVID vaccine boosters in young people, the optimal vaccine dosing interval, and even the antiviral drug Paxlovid in vaccinated people.

More disturbing, our country has been deeply divided for years about whether to mask children. The partisan arguing and harm to children could have been avoided if a proper study settled the science early. Because the NIH moved at glacial speed, most of our COVID knowledge came from overseas. The critical discovery that steroids reduce COVID mortality by one-third came only after European researchers did a randomized trial that Fauci’s agency should have commissioned quickly. Similarly, a conclusive study showing that Vitamin D reduces COVID mortality, published last month, arrived two years too late.

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Zeroburger.

Trump Tax Returns Released By House Committee: He Paid Little In Taxes (NBC)

A House committee on Friday made public six years of former President Donald Trump’s tax returns, which showed he paid relatively little in federal taxes in the years before and during his presidency. The House Ways and Means Committee had voted to make the thousands of pages of federal returns public in a party-line vote last week, but their release was delayed while staffers redacted sensitive personal information like Social Security numbers from the documents. Friday’s release, the culmination of years of legal wrangling and speculation, included both personal and business records. Trump on Friday blasted the release in a statement and on his Truth Social platform, saying “the Democrats should have never done it, the Supreme Court should have never approved it, and it’s going to lead to horrible things for so many people.”

He also maintained the returns he fought to keep hidden — despite modern precedent that presidents make their returns public — “show how proudly successful I have been and how I have been able to use depreciation and various other tax deductions as an incentive for creating thousands of jobs and magnificent structures and enterprises.” The panel’s top Republican, Rep. Kevin Brady of Texas, called the release of the documents “unprecedented,” and said Democrats had unleashed “a dangerous new political weapon that reaches far beyond the former president, overturning decades of privacy protections for average Americans.” “This is a regrettable stain on the Ways and Means Committee and Congress, and will make American politics even more divisive and disheartening. In the long run, Democrats will come to regret it,” Brady said.

The returns confirm much of what was contained in a 39-page report from the Joint Committee on Taxation released last week, including summaries from Trump’s personal tax forms and business entities, but also some new information as well. The returns show that in the 2020 tax year, Donald and Melania Trump reported $78 million in gross income from 16 foreign countries — including the United Kingdom, Ireland and St. Martin, where Trump has properties. The gross income also included a reported $1.2 million from “other countries” — abbreviated as “OC” — that were not specified.But the couple also appeared to owe nothing in federal taxes, after reporting large deductions and expenses that resulted in a net loss of $15 million. Trump then claimed a $5 million refund, according to the return.

Trump also reported zero charitable donations that year, the returns show. That was an outlier for Trump during his time in office — he reported $1.8 million in charitable giving in 2017, and just over $500,000 in charitable donations in 2018 and 2019, the returns show. Trump pledged to donate his $400,000 presidential salary while in office, money he gave to various government agencies.

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You can bet it’s all legal.

Trump’s Tax Returns Reveal President’s Foreign Bank Accounts (Az.)

Newly released tax returns for former President Donald Trump have shed light on his business losses, complicated tax set-ups and tax payments during his White House years. However, they are unlikely to have a major political impact as he eyes another presidential run, experts say. The documents confirmed that Mr Trump paid no federal taxes in 2020 and only $750 (£622) in 2016 and 2017. He paid close to $1m in 2018, however. A long legal battle led to the release of the records, and Mr Trump criticised the disclosure, warning that it will deepen the US political divide. He added that the returns “show how proudly successful I have been and how I have been able to use depreciation and various other tax deductions as an incentive for creating thousands of jobs and magnificent structures and enterprises.”

Although there’s no law requiring it, it is tradition for presidents to publish their tax returns. US presidents are paid a salary like any worker, but many also earn income from their personal businesses and investments. The newly released documents include tax returns and related documents for Donald Trump, the Donald J Trump Revocable Trust and seven corporate entities. They represent only a fraction of the former president’s over 400 separate business interests. Previously released figures show that Mr Trump paid a total of $1.1m (£906,587) in federal income taxes from 2016 to 2019, all but $1,500 of which was paid in one year. He paid no taxes in 2020, the final year of his presidency.


The documents also show that Mr Trump, who had international business dealings, held bank accounts in Ireland, the United Kingdom and China for a period that ran from 2015-17. The overseas accounts were notable, as Mr Trump held the White House in 2017, giving him significant power over US foreign policy. From 2018 onward, Mr Trump only reported having an account in the UK.

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“The President is quoted as saying “Look, the Secret Service are never up here. It didn’t happen.“

“..female agents complained about his exposing himself to them by insisting on swimming in the nude..”

President Bites Agent (Turley)

“It didn’t happen.” According to published excerpts, President Joe Biden is denying an account of the Secret Service about an agent being attacked by his German Sheppard, Major, at the White House. The statement from the President raises some interesting legal questions after he effectively called an agent a liar about an official report on one of many bite incidents with the Biden dogs. If the quote is accurate, the criticism could not only be viewed as defamatory but another unfounded attack on the integrity and veracity of federal employees by the President. This should not be dismissed as some sensational “President Bites Agent” story. It raises long-standing concerns over the lack of recourse for agents endangered or abused by protected individuals. Indeed, the controversy raises some of the issues litigated during the Clinton Administration over the status of Secret Service agents.

The book, “The Fight of His Life,” by author Chris Whipple details Biden’s continued mistrust of the Secret Service and his alleged avoidance of saying anything in front of agents. Biden has long had tense relations with the Secret Service, particularly after female agents complained about his exposing himself to them by insisting on swimming in the nude. The book claims that Biden has his own “deep state” conspiracy theories. Biden reportedly views the Secret Service as essentially the enemy within, suggesting that it is populated by “MAGA sympathizers” due to the fact that the service “is full of white ex-cops from the South who tend to be deeply conservative.”

However, this is a major escalation in that reportedly strained relationship. Some of us previously discussed the problem of the Biden dogs (including his other dog Champ) biting agents, attacks that would ordinarily lead to liability. In one eight-day period, agents were bitten every day. Indeed, outside of the White House, the Biden dogs would qualify for strict liability under the common law as displaying a vicious disposition. Under the common law, the Bidens could claim that Major and Champ were entitled to “one free bite.” The “one free bite rule” is a commonly misunderstood torts doctrine — suggesting that you are not subject to strict liability until after the first time your dog bites someone. In fact, you are subject to strict liability whenever you know or have reason to know of the vicious propensity of your animal. That can be satisfied by conduct such as frequent snapping or aggressive behavior.

[..] Now Biden is quoted as saying that he does not trust the Secret Service and believes that one agent is outright lying about one attack by Major. The President is quoted as saying “Look, the Secret Service are never up here. It didn’t happen.” The incident was reported by the agent and photos were taken to document that attack. The President’s denial of the location ignores the confirmed attack itself. Other agents complained about the disregard of the agents by the Bidens in the repeated attacks, including on agent who reportedly insisted that the president personally pay to repair a ripped coat after one attack on March 6, 2021.

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What a loser. No, not the mother.

Ex-Stripper Seeks To Change Name Of Hunter’s Child To Biden (RT)

Lunden Roberts, the former exotic dancer who gave birth to Hunter Biden’s love child in 2018, is reportedly seeking legal permission for her daughter to use her father’s surname. The 4-year-old girl, who has never met her father or her paternal grandfather, US President Joe Biden, would “benefit from carrying the Biden family name,” Roberts said this week in an Arkansas court filing. The request, which was first reported by the Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette on Thursday, was filed in a paternity case that Hunter Biden reopened in September to seek a reduction in his child support payments. The “Biden name is now synonymous with being well educated, successful, financially acute and politically powerful,” Clinton Lancaster, a lawyer representing the ex-stripper, said in the filing.

He added that while the daughter remains estranged from her father’s family, “to the extent this is misconduct or neglect, it can be rectified by changing her last name to Biden so that she may undeniably be known to the world as the child of the defendant and member of the prestigious Biden family.” Roberts, now 31, filed her paternity case in 2019, after Biden denied that he fathered her child. At one point, he claimed to have “no recollection” of meeting the woman, a former college basketball player who was performing under the stage name ‘Dallas’ at a Washington strip club. At the time, he was reportedly dating the widow of his deceased brother, Beau Biden. A DNA test showed that Hunter Biden was the child’s father. He agreed in January 2020, when his father was running for president, to pay child support to Roberts.


He married a South African woman, environmental activist Melissa Cohen, in May 2019, just six days after meeting her. The couple had a son in March 2020. Last September, Biden asked the Arkansas court to cut his child support payments because he could no longer afford them. He cited a change in his “financial circumstances, including but not limited to his income.” His young daughter currently goes by the name Navy Joan Roberts. President Biden reportedly refused to provide Secret Service protection for the girl, even after she and her mother received threats. The elder Biden has been criticized for refusing to acknowledge his granddaughter.

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A bit more of this. Because this may prevent Hunter from walking away.

Note: he denies being the father, despite the DNA, and the family even disowns the child?! What a graceful step.

“Roberts has requested a list of Hunter’s residences for the past 10 years, along with vehicles he’s owned or driven for the past five years in order to obtain evidence of his “well-established history of a lavish lifestyle.”

Biden Family Disowns Hunter’s 4-Year-Old Daughter (ZH)

The woman who mothered Hunter’s secret lovechild, Lunden Alexis Roberts, filed paperwork on Tuesday requesting that an Arkansas court allow the child, Navy Joan Roberts, be given the Biden name, claiming that the toddler would “benefit from carrying the Biden family name” because it’s “now synonymous with being well educated, successful, financially acute, and politically powerful.” The Bidens, meanwhile, have completely ignored the President’s grandchild – striking her attendance from the 46th presidential inauguration and allegedly refusing to offer security aid to the mother-daughter pair, despite domestic violence threats from Roberts’ ex. The filing cites President Biden, Jill Biden and Hunter’s late brother Beau as examples of successful individuals bearing the last name, and says that the Biden family remains “estranged from the child.

To the extent this is misconduct or neglect, it can be rectified by changing her last name to Biden so that she may undeniably be known to the world as the child of the defendant and member of the prestigious Biden family.” Roberts, originally from Batesville and an Arkansas State University graduate, met Hunter Biden while she was living in Washington, D.C., and worked for him, Lancaster previously said. The child, initially referred to in the case as “Baby Doe,” was born in August 2018; the paternity suit followed in May 2019, days after Hunter Biden’s marriage to a South African filmmaker, the former Melissa Cohen. A DNA test showed, “with near scientific certainty,” that Biden is Baby Doe’s father, Judge Holly Meyer declared in a January 2020 order. That month the parties agreed on temporary child support until the issue was resolved. -Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette

Hunter Biden wrote in his 2021 book “Beautiful Things” that he fought Roberts’ paternity suit because, being a crackhead, he had no recollection of the incident that led to the pregnancy. “The other women I’d been with during rampages since my divorce were hardly the dating type. We would satisfy our immediate needs and little else,” wrote Hunter, adding “I’m not proud of it.” According to Roberts, Hunter has a “long, and lengthy, history of attempting to avoid discovery by filing endless and recurrent motions for protective orders. Additionally, this case was finally resolved the first time when this court denied the defendant’s motion for a protective order relating to discovery.”

Roberts has requested a list of Hunter’s residences for the past 10 years, along with vehicles he’s owned or driven for the past five years in order to obtain evidence of his “well-established history of a lavish lifestyle.” “[Biden] objects and refuses to provide all the requested information. Instead, [Biden] seeks a protective order,” reads a filing. She’s also requested information related to a federal investigation into Hunter’s “tax affairs.” “This information is relevant to determine if, as Federal authorities insinuated, the defendant failed to disclose all his income as this goes to earning capability and Mr. Biden’s credibility.”

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This case stinks like few others.

Uncharged J6 Witness Ray Epps Transcript Released (ZH)

Ray Epps, the uncharged man identified as a key instigator behind the January 6, 2020 Capitol Breach for telling people to storm the Capitol, said in a text message to his nephew that he “orchestrated” things, according to newly released witness transcripts from the January 6th Committee. “At that point, I didn’t know that they were breaking into the Capitol,” Epps told Congressional investigators, adding “I didn’t know anybody was in the Capitol. … I was on my way back to the hotel room.” But the night before, Epps was seen going around to various groups of Trump supporters, telling them they need to storm the capitol. In two interviews with the FBI in 2021, Epps explained his actions on Jan. 5 and Jan. 6. He admitted he was guilty of trespassing on restricted Capitol grounds and confessed to urging protesters to go to—and into—the Capitol on Jan. 6.

Epps also told members of the Committee that he found himself playing peacekeeper between Trump supporter “Baked Alaska” and the police – who called Epps a Fed. “I was trying to find some common ground,” said Epps. “This guy was trying to turn people against me…he was calling me ‘boomer,’ and it’s his generation’s fault that we’re in the position we’re in.” Despite the admissions, the FBI never arrested Epps and he was not charged by the U.S. Department of Justice with any Jan. 6 crimes. The non-action has fueled a crop of theories that he might have been working for the FBI or another agency. Epps, 61, has repeatedly denied those suggestions through his attorney. Speculation that Epps was a ‘fed’ intensified after a Revolver News reported with the headline: “Meet Ray Epps: The Fed-Protected Provocateur Who Appears To Have Led The Very First 1/6 Attack On The U.S. Capitol”


“Revolver also determined, and will prove below, that the the FBI stealthily removed Ray Epps from its Capitol Violence Most Wanted List on July 1, just one day after Revolver exposed the inexplicable and puzzlesome FBI protection of known Epps associate and Oath Keepers leader Stewart Rhodes. July 1 was also just one day after separate New York Times report amplified a glaring, falsifiable lie about Epps’s role in the events of January 6. Lastly, Ray Epps appears to have worked alongside several individuals — many of them suspiciously unindicted — to carry out a breach of the police barricades that induced a subsequent flood of unsuspecting MAGA protesters to unwittingly trespass on Capitol restricted grounds and place themselves in legal jeopardy. -Revolver News. As speculation over Epps grew, Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) claimed that Epps had “cooperated with the Jan 6 committee,” and was removed from the FBI’s most wanted list “because apparently he broke no laws.”

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SBF.

He’s Cooked… (Denninger)

Sam is done. Two of his chief lieutenants, including his former lover, have turned on him, pled guilty to criminal offenses that will almost-certainly lead to a decade or more in prison, and are cooperating against him. Among the offenses they pled guilty to are installing specific bypasses of the risk-control and auto-liquidation rules on certain accounts which were utterly essential to propagate the robbery of client funds. Absent that most, if not all of the loss would not have occurred, with Alameda being forced into liquidation before the damage was severe enough to implicate customer money. That’s an intentional act and the other two admitted to being involved in doing it so its perfectly legitimate to state it as fact rather than speculation.

How far down the rabbit hole this all goes is an open question, but the real underlying issue is that the sort of nonsense with so-called “stable coins” and similar games have repeatedly been exposed and the entire house of cryptocurrency “value” rests on said claims that this is not the case. It is the case, however, and only an idiot after seeing it happen several times sequentially has any reason to believe its not present in every single one of these instances. At the core of the issue is that somewhere everyone has to get paid for what they do. If you think you found an example where this is not the case you are being scammed; you just haven’t figured out how or why yet. If there’s enough indirection you can hide this for a good long time, but eventually the market will turn against you.


This is the essence of why “cryptocurrencies” are all valueless; each transaction has a cost, someone has to pay said cost, the more complex and secure the system is the higher said cost is and all of those costs exceed that of other currency systems thus without some means of cheating so your transaction “appears” to be inexpensive to process compared against the alternatives nobody would use it unless what they were doing is fundamentally illegal and thus to use any of the “legitimated” currency systems exposes said person to immediate arrest and prosecution. What’s possibly worse, however, is that all crypto systems by definition result in an indelible and immutable forensic transaction trail that fully meets all requirements to be admissible in court and therefore the claim that somehow they are “safe” to use for illegal acts is also both false and thus an active fraud.

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Phasmid

 

 

 

 

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Dec 252022
 
 December 25, 2022  Posted by at 10:30 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , ,  52 Responses »


Rembrandt van Rijn The Angel Appearing to the Shepherds 1634

 

Jesus Would Be Branded A “Domestic Terrorist” Today (Whitehead)
Christmas Eve Cold Weather Brings Rolling Blackouts Along East Coast (CTH)
Peace In Ukraine Depends On Washington – Orban (RT)
Only Putin Can End Ukrainian Conflict – Draghi (RT)
US Says Putin Finally “Acknowledging Reality” After 300 Days Of War (ZH)
China Calls US A ‘Direct Threat’ To The World (RT)
US Defense Act Is A ‘Political Provocation’ – China (RT)
Twitter Files Thread: The Spies Who Loved Twitter (Taibbi)
CIA Pushed Twitter To Censor ‘Anti-Ukraine Narratives’ (RT)
US Moving Bioweapons Research Out Of Ukraine – Moscow (RT)
Russia To Divert Gas Away From West – Official (RT)
German Coal Consumption Soars – Bloomberg (RT)
Without a Hope or a Prayer (Turley)
Traitors (Julie Kelly)
GOP Wants Pelosi to Testify Before Jan. 6 Committee (CB)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stone Flynn Zel

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“..a world that has allowed the life, teachings and crucifixion of Jesus to be drowned out by partisan politics, secularism, materialism and war..”

Jesus Would Be Branded A “Domestic Terrorist” Today (Whitehead)

The Christmas story of a baby born in a manger is a familiar one. The Roman Empire, a police state in its own right, had ordered that a census be conducted. Joseph and his pregnant wife Mary traveled to the little town of Bethlehem so that they could be counted. There being no room for the couple at any of the inns, they stayed in a stable (a barn), where Mary gave birth to a baby boy, Jesus. Warned that the government planned to kill the baby, Jesus’ family fled with him to Egypt until it was safe to return to their native land. Yet what if Jesus had been born 2,000 years later. What if, instead of being born into the Roman police state, Jesus had been born at this moment in time? What kind of reception would Jesus and his family be given? Would we recognize the Christ child’s humanity, let alone his divinity?

Would we treat him any differently than he was treated by the Roman Empire? If his family were forced to flee violence in their native country and sought refuge and asylum within our borders, what sanctuary would we offer them?A singular number of churches across the country have asked those very questions in recent years, and their conclusions were depicted with unnerving accuracy by nativity scenes in which Jesus and his family are separated, segregated and caged in individual chain-link pens, topped by barbed wire fencing. Those nativity scenes were a pointed attempt to remind the modern world that the narrative about the birth of Jesus is one that speaks on multiple fronts to a world that has allowed the life, teachings and crucifixion of Jesus to be drowned out by partisan politics, secularism, materialism and war, all driven by a manipulative shadow government called the Deep State.

The modern-day church has largely shied away from applying Jesus’ teachings to modern problems such as war, poverty, immigration, etc., but thankfully there have been individuals throughout history who ask themselves and the world: what would Jesus do. What would Jesus—the baby born in Bethlehem who grew into an itinerant preacher and revolutionary activist, who not only died challenging the police state of his day (namely, the Roman Empire) but spent his adult life speaking truth to power, challenging the status quo of his day, and pushing back against the abuses of the Roman Empire—do about the injustices of our modern age.

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“..the olden days, when service providers were generally focused on improving the quality of life of their customers..”

Christmas Eve Cold Weather Brings Rolling Blackouts Along East Coast (CTH)

If you visit a local library, you may discover there was a time when the focus of electricity companies was to generate and provide the most dependable, efficient, lowest cost and critical power to customers who need electricity to live. Alas, those were in the olden days, when service providers were generally focused on improving the quality of life of their customers. In the modern era, the horrible carbon emitters, aka customers, have become the parasite to manage. People are now a problematic encumbrance blocking the high-minded climate and financial aspirations of the energy corporations. Heating, cooling and comfort? Get a grip Boomers and GenXer’s, those insufferably selfish indulgences were the priorities of yesteryear.

Yes Alice, as we try to peer through the looking glass, we discover it’s a mirror now. The reflection is the opposite of normal, the reflection is the world of pretending. Say hello to the modern Christmastime when you pray for coal in your stocking. From Pennsylvania and New Jersey, westward to Illinois and Ohio and all the way south into South Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia and beyond, power companies are turning off the electricity to preserve and equally distribute the minimal amount of energy they are able to generate. This my friends, is the “equitable distribution of misery.” How weird does it feel to see that generational prediction turning into reality?


TENNESSEE – […] The TVA began instructing local power companies to reduce power usage on Friday night, and some have instituted rolling blackouts in some cities such as Nashville, Tennessee. Some local power companies have also started using rolling blackouts after the TVA asked them to reduce power usage. PJM Interconnection, based in Pennsylvania, also asked companies within its system to conserve energy. The company asked residents to turn off non-essential lights, set their thermostats lower than usual, and not use major appliances like dishwashers and laundry machines, the AP reported. PJM covers areas in Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia and Washington, D.C, according to the AP.

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“We are pro-Hungarian. We are on the side of the Hungarians in the Russian-Ukrainian war..”

Peace In Ukraine Depends On Washington – Orban (RT)

The prospects of ending the Ukraine-Russia conflict are in the hands of the US, in its role as Kiev’s main backer, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban has said. “Ukraine can only fight as long as the US supports it with money and weapons,” Orban insisted in an interview with the Magyar Nemzet newspaper on Saturday. “If Americans want peace, there will be peace,” he stressed. Since the conflict in Ukraine broke out in late February, Washington has provided Kiev with billions of dollars in military and financial assistance, as well as with military intelligence. Deliveries of lethal aid have included sophisticated hardware such as HIMARS multiple rocket launchers, M777 howitzers, and combat drones. It was recently announced that the Ukrainian military will also receive Patriot air-defense systems.


Earlier this week, US President Joe Biden welcomed his Ukrainian counterpart Vladimir Zelensky to the White House, and pledged: “we will stay with you for as long as it takes.” Russia has long insisted that a “proxy war” is actually being waged against it in Ukraine by the US and NATO. Orban was also asked how he felt about Hungary being branded “pro-Russian” in the EU over its continued economic cooperation with Russia, criticism of the bloc’s anti-Moscow sanctions, and reluctance to send arms to Kiev. “We are pro-Hungarian. We are on the side of the Hungarians in the Russian-Ukrainian war,” the PM responded. Budapest wants Ukraine to stay sovereign and Russia not to pose a threat to Europe, but believes that severing all economic ties with Moscow goes against the country’s interests, he explained.

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“The backing of Kiev has ultimately become one of the main reasons behind Draghi’s downfall..”

Only Putin Can End Ukrainian Conflict – Draghi (RT)

Only Russian President Vladimir Putin is able to end the ongoing conflict between Moscow and Kiev, Italy’s former prime minister Mario Draghi believes. Russia, for its part, has repeatedly said it is open to talks, since negotiations with Kiev in Istanbul fell through in March. “The prospects for peace are difficult even if a lot has changed in the last period: the channels of communication are much more open and China seems to be more active in staging negotiations,” Draghi stated, in an exclusive interview with daily Corriere della Sera published Saturday. He added that it was still only up to the Russian leadership to end its offensive against Ukraine.

During his time in office, Draghi became one of the most vocal proponents of Ukraine in the West, sending in weaponry as well as rallying international support for the country. The backing of Kiev has ultimately become one of the main reasons behind Draghi’s downfall, as a disagreement over arms shipments caused a split in the Five Star Movement party, toppling his coalition government. Still, the former PM stood by his policies, claiming that his strong support of Ukraine has thwarted Russia’s plans, as Moscow has allegedly hoped for “ambiguity” in Rome. “I was aware of the strong past ties between Italy and Moscow, but we could not remain passive in the face of unmotivated aggression and systematic violations of international law and human rights,” Draghi stated.

“However, the Kremlin has so far shown that it does not want peace,” he went on. But it is only President Putin who can put an end to this bloodshed. Amid the ongoing conflict, he said, Moscow has repeatedly signaled readiness to negotiate with Ukraine but any talks must take Russia’s interests into account. Russia has also blamed the lack of any diplomatic effort to end the conflict on Kiev and on its willingness to continue the hostilities.

Moreover, top Ukrainian officials have repeatedly pledged to reconquer the formerly-Ukrainian regions of Donetsk, Lugansk, Kherson, and Zaporozhye – which formally joined Russia in early October – as well as Crimea, which has been part of Russia since a 2014 referendum. And Ukrainian president Vladimir Zelensky has formally ‘banned’ himself from negotiating with the Russian president altogether. The countries were on the verge of striking a peace deal after talks in Istanbul in late March. At that time they inked a proposed agreement, which would have given Ukraine international security guarantees in exchange for neutral status. Kiev pulled out of the talks soon afterwards, with Zelensky claiming that fresh evidence of war crimes allegedly committed by Russian troops had left him no other option. Moscow rejected the accusations, calling the evidence falsified.

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I think he always has recognized reality.

US Says Putin Finally “Acknowledging Reality” After 300 Days Of War (ZH)

The Biden administration has responded to a Thursday speech by Vladimir Putin wherein the Russian leader used the word “war” for the first time to refer to what for ten months he previously only called a “special military operation”. The State Department on Friday called on Putin to keep “acknowledging reality” and to pull his troops from Ukraine. “Since Feb. 24, the United States and rest of the world knew that Putin’s ‘special military operation’ was an unprovoked and unjustified war against Ukraine. Finally, after 300 days, Putin called the war what it is,” a State Department spokesperson said. “As a next step in acknowledging reality, we urge him to end this war by withdrawing his forces from Ukraine,” the US official added. The statement explained that regardless of Putin’s now apparent shift in terminology, it remains that “Russia’s aggression against its sovereign neighbor has resulted in death, destruction and displacement.”


“The people of Ukraine no doubt find little consolation in Putin stating the obvious, nor do the tens of thousands of Russian families whose relatives have been killed fighting Putin’s war,” the spokesperson said. Putin had said at a Thursday televised news conference: “Our goal is not to spin this flywheel of a military conflict, but, on the contrary, to end this war,” adding that “This is what we are striving for.” Putin’s unprecedented word choice of “war” came the day after Ukrainian President Zelensky visited Washington and met with President Biden, and gave an address before Congress, wherein he pledged “absolute victory”. Kremlin officials have throughout the invasion carefully avoided using the term “war” in describing the Ukraine invasion. US policymakers and defense officials have been forecasting a “very extended conflict” which could last “years” – and at the same time there seems little appetite for any level of dialogue or peace talks on either side.

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“either waged wars against other countries or created conflicts, causing massive casualties and displacement of innocent civilians.”

China Calls US A ‘Direct Threat’ To The World (RT)

Washington intentionally hypes up the “China threat” as an exuse to boost its military spending in an effort to maintain its global dominance, the Chinese Defense Ministry said in a statement on Saturday, after President Joe Biden signed the 2023 US National Defense Authorization Act into law. “Facts have proved more than once that the US is the direct threat to the international order and the culprit of the regional turbulence,” said the ministry’s spokesman, Colonel Tan Kefei. The statement went on to claim that in pursuit of its selfish interests, the US on multiple occasions “either waged wars against other countries or created conflicts, causing massive casualties and displacement of innocent civilians.”


The $858-billion US military spending program for fiscal year 2023, which authorized $10 billion in security assistance and fast-tracked weapons procurement for Taiwan, is yet another in a series of provocative moves that “seriously jeopardize the peace and stability in Taiwan Straits and increase the risk of China-US military confrontation.” The Chinese People’s Liberation Army further vowed to “resolutely safeguard national reunification and territorial integrity of the country,” warning that Washington has no other choice but to “respect China’s core interests and major concerns.” The island of Taiwan has been self-governed since 1949, but never officially declared independence from Beijing, with China viewing it as part of its territory. Tensions between Beijing and Taipei have been high since the visit of US House speaker Nancy Pelosi to Taiwan in August. Washington must drop its “old trick of unilateral bullying” that it hands out to Beijing, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi told US Secretary of State Antony Blinken in a phone call earlier this week. “It has not worked with China in the past, nor will it work in the future.”

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“..it would be beneficial for both sides if the US gives up on its “Cold-War and zero-sum mentality”

US Defense Act Is A ‘Political Provocation’ – China (RT)

The US National Defense Authorization Act hypes up the “China threat,” interferes in the country’s internal affairs and attacks the Chinese Communist Party, Beijing said on Saturday. The $858-billion military spending program for fiscal year 2023, signed into law by US President Biden on Friday, is “a serious political provocation against China,” that country’s foreign ministry pointed out in a statement. Beijing “deplores and firmly opposes” the new legislation, it added. The US defense act, which authorized $10 billion in security assistance and fast-tracked weapons procurement for Taiwan, is sending “a gravely wrong signal to ‘Taiwan independence’ separatist forces and severely affects peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait,” it said. The island of Taiwan has been self-governed since 1949, but never officially declared independence from Beijing, with China viewing it as part of its territory.


Tensions between Beijing and Taipei have been high since the visit of US House speaker Nancy Pelosi to Taiwan in August. “The US needs to stop seeking to use Taiwan to contain China, stop fudging, distorting and hollowing out the One-China principle, and stop moving even further down the wrong and dangerous path,” the ministry warned. Among other things, the bill also contained an amendment that restricted US government agencies from buying products that contain computer chips made by a specific group of Chinese companies. Beijing has urged Washington to refrain from implementing the “negative China-related sections” in the act or face “strong and resolute” counter-measures. According to the foreign ministry, it would be beneficial for both sides if the US gives up on its “Cold-War and zero-sum mentality” and develops a rational view on relations with China.

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“Twitter had so much contact with so many agencies that executives lost track..”

Twitter Files Thread: The Spies Who Loved Twitter (Taibbi)

After writing quite the pre-Christmas reflection Friday, night, Journalist Matt Taibbi has decided to grace us with a Christmas Eve edition of THE TWITTER FILES – which he says details “Twitter’s relationship to other government agencies – including some that don’t like to see their name in print much.”

2. It didn’t refute allegations. Instead, it decried “conspiracy theorists” publishing “misinformation,” whose “sole aim” is to “discredit the agency.”

3.They must think us unambitious, if our “sole aim” is to discredit the FBI. After all, a whole range of government agencies discredit themselves in the #TwitterFiles. Why stop with one?

4.The files show the FBI acting as doorman to a vast program of social media surveillance and censorship, encompassing agencies across the federal government – from the State Department to the Pentagon to the CIA.

5.The operation is far bigger than the reported 80 members of the Foreign Influence Task Force (FITF), which also facilitates requests from a wide array of smaller actors – from local cops to media to state governments.

6.Twitter had so much contact with so many agencies that executives lost track. Is today the DOD, and tomorrow the FBI? Is it the weekly call, or the monthly meeting? It was dizzying.

7.A chief end result was that thousands of official “reports” flowed to Twitter from all over, through the FITF and the FBI’s San Francisco field office.

8.On June 29th, 2020, San Francisco FBI agent Elvis Chan wrote to pair of Twitter execs asking if he could invite an “OGA” to an upcoming conference:

9.OGA, or “Other Government Organization,” can be a euphemism for CIA, according to multiple former intelligence officials and contractors. Chuckles one: “They think it’s mysterious, but it’s just conspicuous.”

10.“Other Government Agency (the place where I worked for 27 years),” says retired CIA officer Ray McGovern.

11. It was an open secret at Twitter that one of its executives was ex-CIA, which is why Chan referred to that executive’s “former employer.”

12.The first Twitter executive abandoned any pretense to stealth and emailed that the employee “used to work for the CIA, so that is Elvis’s question.”

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“..the “government partners” were getting increasingly “aggressive” with their takedown requests..”

CIA Pushed Twitter To Censor ‘Anti-Ukraine Narratives’ (RT)

The CIA, Pentagon and other US intelligence and law enforcement agencies, referred internally as OGA, were getting increasingly “more aggressive” with their takedown requests, effectively pushing the platform to engage in censorship of foreign policy stories that ran against the Washington-approved narrative, the latest trove of Twitter documents reveals.“The files show the FBI acting as doorman to a vast program of social media surveillance and censorship, encompassing agencies across the federal government – from the State Department to the Pentagon to the CIA,” journalist Matt Taibbi wrote in the Christmas Eve edition of the Twitter Files, released with a blessing from the company’s owner Elon Musk.

Among thousands of censorship requests flowing to Twitter from “Other Government Organizations” through the FBI’s Foreign Influence Task Force, many had nothing to do with purported “foreign meddling” and were linked to purely domestic issues. But when they had, Twitter executives often struggled to validate government claims, and were under constant pressure – but unable to find evidence to blame a foreign actor, Russia in particular. “Found no links to Russia,” an unnamed analyst said in one of the emails, further suggesting he could “brainstorm” to “find a stronger connection.” Former Trust and Safety chief Yoel Roth admitted he found “no real matches using the info” in another case. Internal communications show that Twitter had been getting so many requests that its executives lost track and had to improvise a system for prioritizing them.

The execs acknowledged it was “odd” how the feds apparently had dedicated personnel tasked with tailoring their takedown requests to Twitter’s policies for faster processing, but even then the company often struggled to find justification for censorship.“Many people wonder if Internet platforms receive direction from intelligence agencies about moderation of foreign policy news stories. It appears Twitter did, in some cases by way of the FITF/FBI,” Taibi wrote. At least some of these originated at the CIA, according to former agent and whistleblower, John Kiriakou, who said he “recognized the formatting.” The feds sometimes sent massive batches of over 1,000 accounts lined up for “digital execution,” with only a brief explanation of their alleged crimes. On multiple occasions they accused “Russian agents” of directing accounts that highlighted “predominantly anti-Ukraine narratives” or documented “purported rights abuses committed by Ukrainians.”

Another intelligence assessment sent to Twitter claimed that accounts spreading information about “neo-Nazis” in Ukraine were part of a Kremlin-controntrolled propaganda campaign and must be banned. In what Taibbi called a “damning admission,” an unnamed former CIA-turned-Twitter executive once noted that the “government partners” were getting increasingly “aggressive” with their takedown requests. “Due to a lack of technical evidence on our end, I’ve generally left it be, waiting for more evidence,” he said about one account. He further argued that since “BRICS is an inherently Russia-dominated economic organization” it was “always likely” that InfoBRICS was “directed by the Kremlin.” “Our window on that is closing, given that government partners are becoming more aggressive on attribution and reporting on it… I’m going to go ahead with suspension and marking the domain UNSAFE.”

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“made many member-states reflect on the risks posed by cooperation with Washington in the military-biological area..”

US Moving Bioweapons Research Out Of Ukraine – Moscow (RT)

After the operations of US-backed labs were uncovered in Ukraine, the Pentagon has been busy moving its bioweapons research to other countries, the head of Russia’s Nuclear Biological and Chemical Defense Troops has said. “The Pentagon is actively working to transfer its unfinished research projects to the countries in Central Asia and Eastern Europe,” Igor Kirillov insisted during a briefing on Saturday. The Americans have also been boosting cooperation with Cambodia, Singapore, Thailand, Kenya and some other nations in the Indo-Pacific and Africa, with “the US Department of Defense being most interested in countries that already possess laboratories with a high level of biocontainment”, he added.

According to the commander, data on illegal operations of US-backed laboratories in Ukraine was presented at the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons conference, which took place in Geneva between November 28 and December 16. It included “documentary evidence that work with components of biological weapons and studies of pathogens of especially dangerous and economically significant infections had been carried out on the territory of Ukraine with financial, scientific, technical and personnel support of the US,” he noted. Papers obtained by Russia during its military operation in Ukraine reveal that “military-biological programs” have been performed by such organizations as Mechnikov Anti-Plague Research Institute in Kiev, Institute of Veterinary Medicine in Kharkov and Lviv-based Research Institute of Epidemiology and Hygiene, Kirillov said.

Those files also mentioned three Pentagon contractors and seven high-ranking officials of the US Department of Defense, he added. The full text of a report by the US Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) on its work in Ukraine, seen by the Russian military, contained data, “confirming the conduct of exercises and training activities with pathogens of especially dangerous infections” in Ukraine, Kirillov said. When the Pentagon released this report to the public, 80% of its content had been redacted, he pointed out. According to the Russian commander, the head of the American delegation at the conference declined to respond to Russia’s accusations of violations of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) by his country.

“Such a stance by the US and its blocking of any initiatives to resume work on the verification mechanism of the CWC once again confirms that Washington has something to hide, and that ensuring transparency in terms of compliance with the convention doesn’t play into the hands of the Americans,” he said. However, the report by Russia didn’t go unnoticed by other countries and “made many member-states reflect on the risks posed by cooperation with Washington in the military-biological area,” Kirillov stressed. The Russian military has been gradually releasing materials on the work of the US-backed biolabs in Ukraine since March. Washington has denied Mocsow’s bioweapons claims, calling them disinformation and a conspiracy theory used by Russia to justify its military operation.

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“..our gas is in demand, it is cheap, we have large reserves, and we will develop these areas..”

Russia To Divert Gas Away From West – Official (RT)

Russian gas is still in high demand in the EU despite the bloc’s latest sanctions on the country’s energy exports, but Moscow intends to divert trade flows elsewhere, Deputy Prime Minister Aleksandr Novak said on Friday. In an interview with the Russia24 channel, he noted that European “colleagues are constantly asking us to increase supplies” via existing infrastructure such as the TurkStream or Blue Stream pipelines and the Ukrainian gas transportation system, adding that the European market remains relevant for Russia. But, given the current “political mood” in the EU to curb its dependence on Russian gas, Moscow is looking at other markets to redirect supplies, the official noted. “Because our gas is in demand, it is cheap, we have large reserves, and we will develop these areas,” he added.


Russia will diversify trade flows by boosting liquefied natural gas (LNG) supplies and pipeline gas deliveries to China, making Asia one of its key directions, Novak said, adding that the country has beefed up LNG production more than threefold. “If earlier only 11 million tons [of LNG] were produced in Russia, today there are already four plants operating, with a total capacity of 36 million tons,” the minister stressed. In the next three or four years Russia is set to boost LNG production to 60 million tons and then bring the figure up to 100 million tons annually, Novak projected. He also reminded his interviewer that along with growing supplies via the Power of Siberia pipeline, Russia and China have an agreement to build gas infrastructure with a capacity to deliver an additional ten billion cubic meters annually.

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No gas? No problem!

German Coal Consumption Soars – Bloomberg (RT)

Energy shortages and surging power prices have pushed Germany to boost coal use despite the country’s commitment to fighting climate change, Bloomberg reported on Thursday. To keep the lights on, Europe’s largest economy is now burning coal at the fastest pace in at least six years, despite the government’s ambitions to phase out the fossil fuel. According to Bloomberg, Germany will be one of the few countries to increase coal imports next year. Facing the dilemma of whether to cut carbon emissions or guarantee energy security in the country, Germany opted for the latter and reopened a number of coal plants. The International Energy Agency said in a recent report that most countries are using “a limited amount of coal power capacity” and “only in Germany, with 10 gigawatts, is the reversal at a significant scale.”

Coal consumption in the country has surged at times this month, bringing it to pollution levels comparable to those in South Africa and India, Bloomberg said, citing Electricity Maps data. According to the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis), the country now produces more than one third of its electricity from coal-fired plants. Power generation using coal was up 13.3% in the third quarter compared to the previous year, data shows. “Coal is coming back as a baseload generator,” founder and director of Perret Associates energy consultancy Guillaume Perret said, adding that the commodity will be less seasonal than it has been “with more coal-burning in summer, spring and autumn, as long as coal remains so much in the money versus gas and there remains a gas shortage.”

While the deficit of natural gas in Germany is one reason for reviving coal, another is the growing demand in France, where power generation was disrupted by nuclear reactor outages. This year, Germany may become a net exporter of electricity to France for the first time since at least 1990, according to Destatis. It is likely that Germany will have to suspend the government’s planned closure of the most polluting power plants by at least nine months and keep them operational until the end of 2024, Perret said.

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Thought police.

Without a Hope or a Prayer (Turley)

This week, the arrest of British Catholic woman for ‘praying’ outside an abortion clinic has attracted international attention. However, the jailing of Isabel Vaughan-Spruce, director of anti-abortion group March for Life UK, is neither surprising nor particularly rare as a denial of free speech in Great Britain. While this form of “protest” is uncommon as the basis for an arrest, free speech has been in a free fall in the UK for years. It is also a cautionary tale for those in the United States, which is facing arguably the largest anti-free speech movement in its history.Pictures from Birmingham show Vaughan-Spruce, 45, simply standing near the abortion clinic silently praying when an officer confronts her. She was not blocking access or displaying any protest signs or material.

Nevertheless, she was arrested, jailed, interrogated, and ultimately charged with four counts of violating the abortion clinic “buffer zone.” According to reports, the West Midlands Police officer asked her “are you praying?” She responded “I might be praying in my head, but not out loud.” That was it. She was arrested for praying “in her head” near an abortion clinic.A recent order from September 7 made clear that praying near an abortion clinic is now a criminal act in the country. The Birmingham City Council order says that prohibited acts includes “but is not limited to graphic, verbal or written means, prayer or counselling.”Various individuals heralded the arrest. Dr. John Michael Leslie went on Twitter to declare “No, you’re in violation of it you repeatedly harass women going to a Family Planning Clinic who might be asking for Abortion Advice.

“Praying in her head” is the spin from her supporters.”However, legally, that is itself a dangerous pin. She was not arrested for past conduct but her current conduct, which was praying in her head.Another poster objected that “It’s so obvious she’s martyring herself in the glare of the public as a way of publicising her beliefs, she knowingly went into that area to get arrested. You must think we’re all crackers.” Indeed, though “crackers” does not quite capture the free speech crisis in the UK. This is not the first thought crime prosecuted in the country.

Last year, Nicholas Brock, 52, was convicted of a thought crime in Maindhead, Berkshire. The neo-Nazi was given a four-year sentence for what the court called his “toxic ideology” based on the contents of the home he shared with his mother in Maidenhead, Berkshire. While most of us find Brock’s views repellent and hateful, they were confined to his head and his room. Yet, Judge Peter Lodder QC dismissed free speech or free thought concerns with a truly Orwellian statement: “I do not sentence you for your political views, but the extremity of those views informs the assessment of dangerousness.”

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“..hire almost 100 temporary government lawyers to help prosecute January 6 protesters, a caseload now nearing 1,000 Americans with promises to add another 1,000 more..”

Traitors (Julie Kelly)

Zelenskyy, always in character, couldn’t even manage to wear a proper suit. His attire, of course, didn’t matter as long as his costume had lots of pockets. Zelenskyy is set to receive $47 billion more in U.S. tax dollars when those same slobbering lawmakers pass a $1.7 trillion government spending bill this month—bringing Zelenskyy’s total grab to $100 billion and counting. The omnibus package itself is one insult after another to the American people. As Rep. Dan Bishop (R-N.C.) detailed in a December 20 tweet thread, generous funding to secure the borders of other countries is included in the bill with little more than crumbs to protect our southern border, now dangerously wide open to human smugglers and drug runners. Billions more will be spent to promote gender equity, fight “structural racism,” expand access to abortion, and construct buildings and parks named after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, retiring Senator Richard Shelby (R-Ark.) and former First Lady Michelle Obama among others.

Perhaps the most outrageous provision in the bill is a hefty budget hike for the Department of Justice. Attorney General Merrick Garland, who spends the majority of his time and resources targeting Donald Trump, his associates, and his supporters, will receive a nearly 10 percent raise next year, bringing the Justice Department’s annual budget to $38.7 billion. More than $212 million is earmarked to hire almost 100 temporary government lawyers to help prosecute January 6 protesters, a caseload now nearing 1,000 Americans with promises to add another 1,000 more. The Federal Bureau of Investigations will get $569 million more next year as that agency’s budget exceeds $11 billion for the first time. Garland and FBI Director Christopher Wray have made it clear by word and deed that the imaginary threat of “domestic violent extremists,” i.e., those who dare to criticize the regime will remain their top priority.

This means more predawn FBI raids of Capitol “trespassers,” more indefinite incarceration for those awaiting trial, more prison sentences for nonviolent offenses, more misery, and more destruction of Constitutional rights. And that’s just fine with the overwhelming majority of Republicans in Washington who’ve been silent in the face of this unprecedented form of government retaliation against Trump supporters. In fact, outgoing Senator Roy Blunt (R-Miss.) explained that the Justice Department really needed the big funding boost. “I’ve always been for prosecuting anybody who violated the law on January the 6th,” Blunt told NBC News this week. “And there are, like, 800 cases already. So I can’t imagine that they don’t need some extra money.”

The FBI, particularly in light of recent revelations of the bureau’s collusion with Big Tech to suppress coverage of Hunter Biden’s laptop and criticism of mail-in voting, should be dismantled and defunded, not rewarded for its interference in two presidential elections among other malfeasance. Nor should the agency receive $375 million in capital funding to build a shiny new headquarters in either Virginia or Maryland as the bill also provides.But that didn’t stop 18 Republican senators, including McConnell and two-time presidential loser Mitt Romney, from voting to pass the omnibus bill on Thursday. Another “yes” vote was from Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), the former chair of the Senate Judiciary who promised for years to “get to the bottom” of numerous Justice Department scandals.

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“The reason there wasn’t a proper security presence on that day goes right to the speaker’s staff and the speaker’s office..”

GOP Wants Pelosi to Testify Before Jan. 6 Committee (CB)

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) will be forced to relinquish her gavel to Republicans early next month after the GOP won a majority in the chamber during the midterm elections last month. But a pair of GOP lawmakers want her to answer some questions — presumably under oath — before a committee she created ostensibly to investigate the Jan. 6, 2021, riot at the U.S. Capitol Building. “The reason there wasn’t a proper security presence on that day goes right to the speaker’s staff and the speaker’s office,” Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) told Just the News Wednesday after the release of the House Republicans’ report detailing the security failures that led to the breach of the Capitol. “As you go back and look at the communications, there’s this pattern that develops where the Sergeant of Arms is meeting with Pelosi’s staff,” Jordan, the incoming House Judiciary Committee chairman, noted further.

“Many of those meetings, Republican staff wasn’t allowed to be there, but they had this pattern where everything had to run through her office, her staff, before the Sergeant of Arms could make a decision.” In a separate interview with the outlet, Rep. Troy Nehls (R-Texas) said that the National Guard was delayed in arriving at the Capitol on Jan. 6 because then-Sergeant at Arms Paul Irving was waiting to hear from Pelosi on the matter. “It’s almost like there were individuals within the current administration that wanted this to happen,” Nehls said. “All the intelligence was there, and what did they have? What did they have? They had bicycle racks. … A bicycle rack couldn’t keep your cat in your yard.” The two lawmakers are among five House Republicans who released the GOP report, which offered substantially more detail about events that day and leading up to it than have been noted or released by Pelosi’s Democrat-run committee.


Nehls made reference to some texts from Irving corroborating accounts that some U.S. Capitol Police officers ushered protesters into the Capitol Building, noting: “The American people aren’t hearing any of this from the sham [Jan. 6] committee.” The Texas lawmaker also said that a former D.C. National Guard commander told him that had Guard troops been deployed when police asked for assistance on Jan. 4, the riot would have “never, ever happened.” “And Nancy Pelosi. You do have questions you need to answer … Nancy, we’ll get you, and we’ll fly you back from Italy once you’re the ambassador,” Nehls said, making reference to earlier reports that President Biden will offer the U.S. Ambassador to Italy post to Pelosi, who is 82. The GOP report, in addition to Pelosi and her staff, also cited the USCP Intelligence and Interagency Coordination Division for ignoring or refusing to act on intelligence indicating there was a need for greater security due to politics, bureaucracy, and the “misplaced priorities of their leadership.”

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Box jellyfish

 

 

Swim tigers

 

 

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Dec 232022
 
 December 23, 2022  Posted by at 10:00 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,  34 Responses »


Saul Leiter Man with flowers, NY 1950s

 

Washington Is Prolonging Ukraine’s Suffering (Macgregor)
German Press Is Pushing For Confrontation With Moscow (Livschitz)
Hungary Wants European Parliament Dissolved (Az.)
EU Leaders Dread a Ukraine Peace Process (Varoufakis)
US Admits Afghan Pullout Helped Arm Ukraine (RT)
US Space Force Practices For War In Europe (RT)
The Mushroom Principle (Blair)
A Well-Deserved Prize! (Dionisio)
US Life Expectancy Fell Again In 2021 – Covid And Drug Overdoses (Hill)
Winter Storm: Energy Demand To Stress Electrical, Natural Gas Systems (Fox)
Maricopa County Elections Director Confirms ‘Bombshell’ Error (BN)
Who Will Pay Sam Bankman-Fried’s $250 Million Bond? (Decrypt)
Rand Paul Exposes Corruption Behind $1.7 Trillion Omnibus Spending Bill (BR)
DeSantis’ Grand Jury Impaneled to Investigate mRNA Vaccine Manufacturers (FlV)
2022 Year in Review: All Roads Lead to Ukraine (Collum)
2022 The Year in Review: The War in Ukraine (Collum)

 

 

 

 

McCullough

 

 

DARPA. Read the first paragraph.

 

 

 

 

Marangoli flow

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Like South Vietnam in the 1960s, Ukraine is losing its war with Russia. Ukraine’s hospitals and morgues are filled to capacity with wounded and dying Ukrainian soldiers.”

Washington Is Prolonging Ukraine’s Suffering (Macgregor)

During a speech given on November 29, Polish Vice-Minister of National Defense (MON) Marcin Ociepa said: “The probability of a war in which we will be involved is very high. Too high for us to treat this scenario only hypothetically.” The Polish MON is allegedly planning to call up 200,000 reservists in 2023 for a few weeks’ training, but observers in Warsaw suspect this action could easily lead to a national mobilization.Meanwhile, inside the Biden administration, there is growing concern that the Ukrainian war effort will collapse under the weight of a Russian offensive. And as the ground in Southern Ukraine finally freezes, the administration’s fears are justified. In an interview published in the Economist, head of Ukraine’s armed forces General Valery Zaluzhny admitted that Russian mobilization and tactics are working. He even hinted that Ukrainian forces might be unable to withstand the coming Russian onslaught.

Yet, Zaluzhny rejected any notion of a negotiated settlement and instead pleaded for more equipment and support. He went on to insist that with 300 new tanks, 600 to 700 new infantry fighting vehicles, and 500 new Howitzers, he could still win the war with Russia. Truthfully, General Zaluzhny is not asking for assistance, he’s asking for a new army. Therein lies the greatest danger for Washington and its NATO allies. When things go badly for Washington’s foreign policy, the true believers in the great cause always draw deeply from the well of ideological self-delusion to steel themselves for the final battle. Blinken, Klain, Austin, and the rest of the war party continue to pledge eternal support for Kiev regardless of the cost. Like the “best and the brightest” of the 1960s they are eager to sacrifice realism to wishful thinking, to wallow in the splash of publicity and self-promotion in one public visit to Ukraine after another.

[..] The Biden administration’s unconditional support for the Zelensky regime in Kiev is reaching a strategic inflection point not unlike the one LBJ reached in 1965. Just as LBJ suddenly determined in 1964 that peace and security in Southeast Asia was a vital U.S. strategic interest, the Biden administration is making a similar argument now for Ukraine. Like South Vietnam in the 1960s, Ukraine is losing its war with Russia. Ukraine’s hospitals and morgues are filled to capacity with wounded and dying Ukrainian soldiers. Washington’s proxy in Kiev has squandered its human capital and considerable Western aid in a series of self-defeating counter-offensives. Ukrainian soldiers manning the defensive lines facing Russian soldiers in Southern Ukraine are brave men, but they are not fools. The Spartans at Thermopylae were brave, and they still died.

Maajid Zel

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“Less than half – 43% – gave the impression that diplomatic negotiations would be useful, and this was largely due to Der Spiegel’s reporting..”

German Press Is Pushing For Confrontation With Moscow (Livschitz)

Last week, the University of Mainz published a study of German news coverage of events in Ukraine, and Berlin’s official response to the crisis. The conclusions confirm that since February 24, the media has played a major role in keeping the conflict going, and making a negotiated settlement less likely, due to almost universally biased, pro-war, anti-Russia content being published at all stages. Researchers at the university analyzed German-language reporting on the Ukraine conflict between February 24 and May 31, assessing the content of around 4,300 separate articles published by the country’s eight leading newspapers and TV stations: FAZ, Suddeutsche Zeitung, Bild, Spiegel, Zeit, ARD Tagesschau, ZDF Today, and RTL Aktuell.

During this time, Ukraine was portrayed positively in 64% of all coverage, and President Vladimir Zelensky in 67%. By contrast, Russia was portrayed “almost exclusively negatively” 88% of the time, and President Vladimir Putin in 96% of cases. Almost all reports – 93% in total – attributed sole blame for the war to Putin and/or Russia. The West was named as “jointly responsible” in only 4% of instances, Ukraine even less so at 2%. The perspectives of Russia on the conflict were only considered or mentioned in 10% of news reports, less than the viewpoint of any other country, including Moscow’s neighbors. Alternative for Germany and the Left Party, which both oppose arming Ukraine and prolonging the fighting, “had practically no media presence in reporting on the war.”

Government messaging and statements from ministers were completely dominant, being the focus in 80% of news coverage, more than four times above the figure for opposition parties. In media discussions of “measures most likely to end the war,” economic sanctions against Russia were “by far the most frequently reported,” and approved of in 66% of cases. Diplomatic measures were mentioned “much less frequently,” while “humanitarian measures” were even less regularly featured. In all, 74% of the reports surveyed portrayed military support to Ukraine “extremely positively.” Delivery of heavy weapons was endorsed “a little less clearly, but still considered to be largely sensible,” with 66% “overwhelmingly in favor.”

Less than half – 43% – gave the impression that diplomatic negotiations would be useful, and this was largely due to Der Spiegel’s reporting that clearly marked diplomacy as the most sensible option for Berlin “by far.” “Der Spiegel was the only media examined to rate diplomatic negotiations more positively than the delivery of heavy weapons,” the academics conclude. The report did identify one area where media coverage was “certainly not pro-government.” On certain rare occasions, Chancellor Olaf Scholz and his coalition were strongly criticized “for hesitating to flood Ukraine with heavy weapons” by all outlets apart from Der Spiegel.

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“..legislators from the parliaments of member states should be delegated to the European Parliament..”

Hungary Wants European Parliament Dissolved (Az.)

The recent corruption scandal in the European Parliament (EP) is a sign that the EU institution should be abolished in its current form, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban said on Wednesday. He added that the EP already had an abysmal reputation. Orban’s remarks came after Eva Kaili, a Greek politician who served as one of the European Parliament’s vice presidents, was arrested and charged this month with corruption for receiving bribes from Qatar. “The Hungarians would like for the European Parliament to be dissolved in its current form,” he said at a press conference in Budapest. Orban argued that the scandal “draws attention to the fact that national parliaments have a stronger control system in place,” adding that legislators from the parliaments of member states should be delegated to the European Parliament, as opposed to being elected separately.


“And they obviously know our political position: the swamp must be drained,” the prime minister said. Budapest has repeatedly clashed with the European Parliament and other EU institutions over a number of issues, including migration and LGBTQ rights. Brussels, in turn, accused Orban’s conservative government of eroding the rule of law at home. Hungary, whose economy heavily depends on Russian energy imports, has also criticized the EU sanctions imposed on Moscow in response to the military operation in Ukraine, which was launched in late February. Unlike many of the bloc’s member states, Orban has refused to send weapons to Kiev. “If it were up to us, there would not be a sanctions policy,” Orban said on Wednesday. “It is not in our interest to permanently divide the European and Russian economies into two, so we are trying to save what can be saved from our economic cooperation with the Russians.”

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Too much division in Europe. “Who will represent the EU in any future peace process?”

EU Leaders Dread a Ukraine Peace Process (Varoufakis)

While peace in Ukraine would help stem Europe’s economic hemorrhaging, the moment any peace process begins, the European Union will be divided by an internal East-West fault line, which is bound to reawaken the EU’s earlier North-South conflict. A credible peace process will require difficult negotiations involving the world’s great powers. Who will represent Europe at that high table? It is hard to imagine Polish, Scandinavian, and Baltic leaders ceding that role to their French or German counterparts. In the EU’s eastern and northeastern flanks, French President Emmanuel Macron is considered a Putin appeaser ready to impose on Ukrainians a reprehensible (to them) land-for-peace agenda.


Likewise, setting aside Germany’s long-term reliance on Russian energy, Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s standing as a torchbearer of Europe’s collective interest has been damaged further by his €200 billion ($212 billion) fiscal defense of German industry – the type of tax-funded protective shield which Germany vetoed at the EU level. Meanwhile, French and German elites pour scorn on the idea that the EU might be represented in any peace process by the likes of Kaja Kallas, Estonia’s Prime Minister, or Sanna Marin, her Finnish counterpart. “The moral crusades of the Ukraine war maximalists are fashionable now but they will hinder, not help, any peace process,” was how a German official put it to me.So, the question remains: Who will represent the EU in any future peace process?

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“Zelensky also addressed a special joint session of Congress, with a plea to approve another $45 billion in aid for 2023. The Senate did so the following day.”

US Admits Afghan Pullout Helped Arm Ukraine (RT)

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken admitted on Thursday that the much-criticized withdrawal from Afghanistan, which he called “America’s longest war,” helped Washington redirect resources to Ukraine just months later Appearing at the State Department for a year-end press conference, Blinken painted a rosy picture of Washington’s diplomatic accomplishments. The exit from Afghanistan, which happened in August 2021, came up because one reporter took issue with Blinken’s claim of strong relationships with US “allies and partners,” some of whom she said were critical of how that US handled that operation. Consultations were “sustained, they were intense, and we strongly took note of everything that we heard from allies and partners in advance of the decisions that President [Joe] Biden made and that we made,” Bliken insisted, arguing that claims otherwise are “not born out by the facts.”

Though the reporter had asked about lessons of that withdrawal in “dealing with Russia and China,” Blinken proceeded to argue that “if we were still in Afghanistan, it would have, I think, made much more complicated the support that we’ve been able to give and that others have been able to give Ukraine” against Russia. The last US soldier departed from the Kabul airport on August 31, 2021. The US-backed Afghan government had collapsed without much of a fight two weeks earlier, leaving the Taliban in control of the country – as they had been in 2001. While the cost of the 20-year conflict has been estimated at over $2 trillion, the US spent almost $73 billion in 2021 dollars on training, equipping, maintaining and supplying the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF), most of it from the Pentagon budget. The bulk of ANDSF weaponry and equipment ended up in Taliban hands.

By comparison, the Russian Defense Ministry estimated earlier this week that total Western aid to Ukraine this year amounted to over $97 billion. The Pentagon alone has spent at least $20 billion in direct “security assistance” to Ukraine since February 2022, by its own admission. Other US government departments, NATO and EU members accounted for the rest. Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky visited Washington in person on Wednesday, receiving a pledge from Biden to fund Kiev for “as long as it takes” and a $1.85 billion packet of weapons and ammunition, including a battery of Patriot air defense missiles. Zelensky also addressed a special joint session of Congress, with a plea to approve another $45 billion in aid for 2023. The Senate did so the following day.

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“We will fight in space as a coalition, and these opportunities are invaluable to building the team that will fight together should the need arise.”

US Space Force Practices For War In Europe (RT)

The US Space Force has conducted joint drills with UK, Canada and Australia – the largest such exercises in its history – to hone its readiness for a hypothetical war in Europe, according to a statement by the Space Training and Readiness Command (STAR). Three so-called Space Flag 23-1 drills, each lasting two days, were conducted earlier this month at Schriever Space Force Base in Colorado. The exercises enabled participants to practice “orbital warfare techniques, our electronic warfare techniques, our space-domain-awareness techniques and intelligence command,” Space Force Lieutenant Colonel Albert Harris said.“This Space Flag focused on a US European Command scenario, so we wanted to present the problem in that theater and exercise our ability to win it based off of various problems that we presented to the team,” Harris added.

Troops were given Europe-specific problems to solve during mission planning and practiced procedures to increase their readiness to win a conflict on the continent, but the exact scenarios remain a mystery. The event marked the first Space Force drills that practiced for European war and just happened to come amid escalating tensions between Washington and Moscow over the Russia-Ukraine conflict. Harris said planning for the exercises began in February, the same month in which Russia began its military operation in Ukraine. Colonel Jason Schramm said the drills enabled US forces and coalition partners to practice their space combat tactics. “Winning in space underpins coalition lethality in other warfighting domains,” he said. “We will fight in space as a coalition, and these opportunities are invaluable to building the team that will fight together should the need arise.”

The US has been supporting Ukraine in its fight against Russia with weapons, supplies and other forms of military aid, such as intelligence, while claiming not to be directly involved in the conflict. General John Raymond, the head of US space operations, said in July that “commercial space has been very important in providing capabilities that have been helpful to Ukraine.” One well-known case is the supply of Starlink ground equipment to Ukraine. Elon Musk’s SpaceX has provided access to satellite broadband internet service to Kiev’s troops. Speaking at a space event at the UN in October, Russian representative Konstantin Vorontsov expressed concern over the US and its allies using “elements of the civilian space infrastructure, including commercial, for military purposes,” and warned that “quasi-civilian infrastructure may be considered a legitimate target for a retaliatory strike.”

The US launched its Space Force as a separate military branch in 2019, more than 50 years after joining with the Soviet Union and the UK in signing a treaty that pledged to set aside space for “peaceful purposes.” The Pentagon has claimed that it must treat space as a “war-fighting domain” because of alleged threats from Russia and China.

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“The mechanisms of “narrative control” have been tightened exponentially.“

The Mushroom Principle (Blair)

The mechanisms of “narrative control” have been tightened exponentially. Back in 2003 it was still possible to read occasional pieces in the “respectable” press such as the BBC, NY Times, Washington Post or The Guardian that questioned the official narrative, particularly the fabricated justifications put forward by the Deep State for their invasion of Iraq. Ever since then, there has been a systematic purge of any and all honest investigative journalists who dare to challenge the Deep State narrative. Most notable was Chris Hedges, Pulitzer prize winning head of the Middle East Bureau of the NY Times, who was forced out of his job for his righteous opposition to the US invasion of Iraq. Another luminary, summarily removed from The Guardian (despite contributing to their Pulitzer Prize win in 2014), was Glenn Greenwald.

Voices of reason such as that of Noam Chomsky have long been sidelined and shunned. The legendary John Pilger, former icon of Fleet Street, has been denied any mainstream platform that could earn him a living wage. There are many others too numerous to mention. Now the Deep State is slowly murdering the greatest journalist of our modern times, Julian Assange, using bogus charges that were trumped-up by the Trump regime. Assange’s greatest crime? Exposing the war crimes of the USA. The US Establishment can now effectively block or stifle any public dissent opposing their War Agenda, while simultaneously instructing the stupid sheeple who they must direct their daily two minutes of hatred against. The Western media have truly turned Orwellian.

They have learned how to do this step-by-step over the years since the Vietnam and Afghan and Iraq debacles, now achieving total control over the mainstream media. Hence when Russia was provoked by the USA into invading Ukraine in February this year, it was falsely and repeatedly and uniformly described as an “unprovoked invasion” by those MSM sewer outlets, completely ignoring the genocide the Ukronazi proxies of the US had been committing against Russophone civilians in Donbass over the previous 8 years. The war criminal Condoleezza Rice condemned Russia for their “criminal invasion” without the slightest hint of irony, while the stenographers “reporting” her words failed to point out the bleeding obvious.

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“It’s not even worth to throw any argument, because classification in these terms is mainly aimed at not discussing anything.”

A Well-Deserved Prize! (Dionisio)

A feeling of complete justice is what I felt when I attended the presentation of the Sakharov prize to comedian Zelinsky. Rarely does an award embody, so substantially, the deep connection between the institution that promotes it, the great European political families that approved it, and the recipient himself. I give a standing ovation! Yes, sir! I fully approve! The bank account that inexplicably appeared in Switzerland, disclosed through the Pandora papers, stuffed with almost a billion Euros, in the name of the prize winner, explains more than one can imagine. It explains everything! Take Eva Kaili, for example. A rising star in international politics, transformed into a runway that shows, on the outside, what she is not on the inside.

To assume that Eva and her cronies are an exception, who, for the money, fame, and glamour it provides, have agreed to publicly defend what they previously claimed to despise…. It is not paying attention to 21st century European politics. In the 21st century, being of the centrist political parties (mainly the social democrats and popular, liberal and moderate conservatives) means a lot…it means everything! It means not being an “extremist”, of course, “left-wing” or “right-wing”, reducing the whole spectrum to two camps – the acceptable, the “mainstream”, the “balanced”; and, the “unacceptable”, the “radical” and “sectarian”; belonging to an “extreme” is the same, whatever side you are on. Being in the middle, that’s all, and that’s not up for discussion anymore. It’s not even worth to throw any argument, because classification in these terms is mainly aimed at not discussing anything.

Not that one can generalize and run everything by the same measure; that is neither serious nor even advisable, and it is precisely what wants the ones that determines that any analysis should be done in the terms I have mentioned. But this is, above all, the story of the political mainstream. Saying one thing… and doing the other. Take the sakharov prize itself: awarding this prize to a guy whose government has outlawed more than a dozen political parties, confiscating their property; to the leader of a government that confiscates property of the Orthodox Church and persecutes its clerics for defending the “Holy Russ” composed of the three sister countries of the Slavic East, of which Kiev is the mother city; who has banned the use of the native language of nearly half of the country’s population, burning books, destroying statues and films depicting the culture in that language; persecutes journalists for reporting what he does not intend; detains political activists who oppose him, and lied in the elections he won, promising what he did not intend to do…

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“Every age group in the nation— from 1 year olds to people age 85 and older— saw a decrease in life expectancy.”

Hmmm. 1 year olds don’t die from Covid or fentanyl. So what is going on there?

US Life Expectancy Fell Again In 2021 – Covid And Drug Overdoses (Hill)

The average U.S. life expectancy shortened by seven months in 2021, according to new data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), driven mainly by COVID-19 and drug overdoses from synthetic opioids. According to a pair of CDC reports, life expectancy dropped for the second consecutive year, from 77 years to 76.4 years. This follows a major drop of 1.8 years in 2020, putting life expectancy from birth at about the same level it was in 1996. Every age group in the nation— from 1 year olds to people age 85 and older— saw a decrease in life expectancy. Life expectancy for women is 79.9 years, about six years longer than men, but they both experienced the same decline.

Almost all racial groups also saw an increase in death rates, except for non-Hispanic Asian males and non-Hispanic Black males, which saw a slight decrease, Nine of the 10 leading causes of death in 2020 were the same in 2021. Heart disease was the main cause of death, followed by cancer and COVID-19, which took nearly 417,000 lives last year, an increase of 18.8 percent from 2020, despite the release of new vaccines. About 3.46 million people died in the U.S. last year, according to CDC, an increase of 80,502 more deaths than in 2020. Deaths by suicide and from liver disease caused by alcohol also increased, contributing to the shorter American lifespan.

Flu and pneumonia rates decreased, as parts of the U.S. population took precautions against the coronavirus and wore masks. Drug overdose deaths have been rising over the past two decades in the United States, CDC said. In 2021, overdoses were responsible for 106,699 deaths. Drug overdose death rates increased for each race and Hispanic-origin group except non-Hispanic Asian people between 2020 and 2021. They rose by 14 percent in 2021 compared to 2020, driven mainly by the illegal synthetic opioid fentanyl. According to the report, there was a 22 percent increase in overdose deaths from synthetic opioids in 2021.

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Keep warm guys.

Winter Storm: Energy Demand To Stress Electrical, Natural Gas Systems (Fox)

America’s natural gas and electrical system will be put to the test in the next few days as a winter storm that’s expected to cascade across the country brings heavy snowfall, ice, flooding and powerful winds. The National Weather Service says a tremendously impactful winter storm will continue to affect large portions of the nation late this week and going into the holiday weekend. Winter weather hazards will stretch from border to border across the central and eastern U.S. and from coast to coast from the east coast to the Pacific Northwest. “I think you’re going to see the demand for energy in the next couple of days be the highest it’s ever been in our country’s history,” American Gas Association CEO Karen Harbert told FOX Business. “This is a storm of consequence, and it’s not isolated. If you look at the storm … it’s going to affect almost the entire lower 48.”


Temperatures in parts of the country have already plummeted Thursday and millions of people are already under some typ of winter weather advisory. “As of Thursday afternoon, nearly 280 million people in the U.S. are under some form of winter weather warning or advisory,” the NWS said. The total includes nearly 150 million for wind chill warnings or advisories, 114 million for blizzard warning, 56 million for winter storm warnings and 500 thousand for ice storm warnings. Although the system is going to be stressed like never before, Harbert said utility companies have been preparing all year for this. “Demand is going to be unprecedented. And they’re going to try and manage that load demand very carefully,” she added.

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Not an error, but a trick. Just use the wrong size of paper and you guarantee tons of ballots are rejected.

Maricopa County Elections Director Confirms ‘Bombshell’ Error (BN)

There was a ‘bombshell’ revelation divulged in court on Thursday in a lawsuit brought by Arizona gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake against Secretary of State and Governor-Elect Katie Hobbs. It leads to the inescapable conclusion that fraud was committed in the Arizona election. Maricopa County Elections Director Scott Jarrett confirmed in court that the ballot printer and tabulation errors that sowed widespread chaos in the Arizona election was caused on Election Day. “Is it your testimony that the printer set changes that led to the so-called ‘shrink to fit’ issue was that done on Election Day?” Kari Lake’s attorney Kurt Olson asked. “That’s correct,” Scott Jarrett replied. “Elections director Scott Jarrett confirms that the printer setting change that led to the mass disenfranchisement of Arizona voters DID occur the morning of election day,” the Kari Lake War Room reported.


Also in Thursday testimony, election modeling expert Richard Baris said that his projections showed as many as 40,000 voters were disenfranchised over Election Day chaos in Arizona’s Maricopa County. Baris said he would “have no doubt” that she would’ve won the election had there been no issues at polling centers. Baris testified that 25,000 to 40,000 voters were disenfranchised in the county due to his estimation that roughly one in five vote centers had problems ballot tabulator machines in the first hours of Election Day. “We’ve got about 20% of the locations out there where there’s an issue with the tabulator,” Maricopa Board of Supervisors Chairman Bill Gates said on election night. Election officials, however, told voters their ballots would still be counted as a result of redundancy protocols. The vote margin between Lake and Hobbs is 17,117 votes. Baris is the last witness that Lake is calling in the scheduled two-day trial for her election lawsuit.

[..] Kari Lake’s legal team attained a legal victory by given authority to randomly inspect ballots from Maricopa County’s election as part of her 70-page lawsuit that Lake filed against top state election officials. The ruling authorized Lake‘s team’s to inspect 50 random ballots cast on Election Day from six polling stations in Maricopa County. During ballot inspection, it was revealed that 48 of 113 ballots reviewed were 19-inch ballots produced on 20-inch paper. This one-inch discrepancy caused ballot tabulators to reject thousands of votes and sowed chaos on Election Day in Maricopa County. An expert witness testified there are only two ways for the 19-inch image to have been projected onto the 20 in ballot, which would cause tabulator errors. The witness verified that both methods required an administrator to change and it could not have happened by chance or error. Thus, it is a form of fraud.

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The appearance bond..

Who Will Pay Sam Bankman-Fried’s $250 Million Bond? (Decrypt)

Disgraced crypto mogul Sam Bankman-Fried today was released from custody by a New York judge under a $250 million bond agreement. That led to one big question across Crypto Twitter: Where did the money come from? Didn’t SBF lose billions of dollars? Is he tapping into FTX funds to pay his own bail? The short answer is this: no one had to pay anything for his release, nor is any cash owed—not yet, anyway. Bankman-Fried’s release agreement is an “appearance bond,” a promise to comply with specific restrictions while awaiting trial, and to show up when the time comes. He had to put up 10% of the bail amount as collateral for the bond, but no actual payment was required.

The appearance bond, as filed with the court, establishes a $250,000,000 “personal recognizance bond” guaranteed by four people, at least one of them not a member of Bankman-Fried’s family. For now, though, the only two signatures are those of Allan Joseph Bankman and Barbara Fried, SBF’s father and mother. At Thursday’s hearing in New York, federal prosecutors said that Bankman-Fried’s bond was “the highest ever pre-trial bond.” Under U.S. law, “recognizance” means a release in which no upfront payment nor bail bond arrangement is required, and that is based solely on a written promise by the defendant to appear in court when required to do so.

“When a loved one or family member co-signs a recognizance bond, the offender’s failure to appear in court impacts additional people—namely the co-signers who are also on the bond,” explained Miriam Baer, vice dean and centennial professor of law at Brooklyn Law School. A court could also require an up front security payment,” Baer adds. “But in some ways requiring family members to co-sign the recognizance bond—especially one with a very high dollar number—is a more powerful way to ensure a wealthy person’s return to court.”

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“It’s a no-good rotten way to run your government,,”

Rand Paul Exposes Corruption Behind $1.7 Trillion Omnibus Spending Bill (BR)

Republican Senator Rand Paul dropped the hammer on Democrats in Congress for corruption hidden inside their $1.7 trillion spending bill. The 4,000 page bill was produced in the middle of the night and released at 1:30 in the morning. Despite having 10 months to work on it, Congress released it at the 11th hour, right before Christmas. This strategy attempts to pressure lawmakers into making an impulsive decision in order to get home for Christmas break. Senator Paul said, “Whose job is it to produce this? The people in charge of spending.” He continued, “When did they know this would be necessary? Well, it’s in the law, September 30th. You got nine months, almost ten months to produce a plan.”


“They weren’t ready on September 30th so they voted themselves 90 more days. They weren’t ready last week either, so they voted themselves another week.” “So now we have it at 1:30 this morning,” Senator Paul said. “I think the greatest risk to our national security is our debt. The process stinks. It’s an abomination.” “It’s a no-good rotten way to run your government. Six trillion dollar entity and they want 24 hours to process this, and then they want to go forward.” Many lawmakers won’t be able to read and process the impact of the 4,000 page spending bill within 24 hours.

Trump omnibus

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Let’s hope he dares take it far and deep enough.

DeSantis’ Grand Jury Impaneled to Investigate mRNA Vaccine Manufacturers (FlV)

The Florida Supreme Court granted Gov. Ron DeSantis’ request to impanel a statewide grand jury to investigate mRNA vaccine manufacturers. DeSantis announced earlier in December his petition for a statewide grand jury to investigate “any and all wrongdoing” in Florida with respect to the COVID-19 vaccine manufacturers. “It is against the law to mislead and to misrepresent, particularly when you’re talking about the efficacy of a drug,” DeSantis said.The statewide grand jury will be allowed to investigate groups involved in the design, development, clinical testing, marketing, and distribution of vaccines said to prevent COVID-19 infection, symptoms, and transmission. It will be impaneled for one year.

DeSantis’ petition argued that there was widespread belief that the COVID-19 vaccine prevented the disease from spreading, which led to vaccine mandates on citizens, health care workers, and military members. “It is impossible to imagine that so many influential individuals came to this view on their own. Rather, it is likely that individuals and companies with an incentive to do so created these perceptions for financial gain,” the petition said. The petition specifically points out Moderna and Pfizer’s claims about preventing the COVID-19 disease with “94.1% efficacy” and “91.3% vaccine efficacy.” Earlier in December, DeSantis also announced that a public health integrity committee will be established. The board will advise the public and provide oversight moving forward of the public health establishment.

Florida Surgeon General Joseph Ladapo has previously spoken out against the mRNA COVID-19 vaccines, saying they are “far less safe” than other vaccines based on an autopsy-based clinical research in a cardiology study. In October, Lapado announced new mRNA COVID-19 vaccine guidance, advising against males aged 18-39 years old from taking those vaccines due to a reported 84% increase in the relative incidence of heart-related deaths.

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Dave Collum’s review is out again. Actually, ARE out again. It will take you all of 2023 to read 2022. Dave sent me a message saying:

“Passing along my annual tome. I cannot fathom how you put out the content that you put out. It takes the hide off me. (The Ukraine section is the core and the source of pain and suffering by the woke.)”

2022 Year in Review: All Roads Lead to Ukraine (Collum)

A Year in Transition. This was my runner up for the title. Aren’t we always stuck on the “Mobius Strip from Hell” that never ends? Francis Fukuyama and Tom Friedman were wrong: history did not end, and the world is going spherical again rather quickly. Of course, we never know the future, but each year seems to have themes that play out with a quantized feel to it. By contrast, 2022 has left world economies heading south but with no bottom in sight. Neither the Fed nor the markets are done inflicting pain. The risk of global famine is real but with inestimable consequences. The futures of Bitcoin and other crypto currencies hang in the balance with more than just price corrections now in play.


The war in Ukraine could end with a whimper (but only if Russia wins) or with a thermonuclear conflagration (nobody wins). Europeans are pondering the relative merits of freezing to death owing to lack of energy or starving to death owing to lack of food, but maybe those potentially biblical events are just clickbait. The WEF has reared its ugly head—the WEF’s Great Reset is not just a theory—yet we still haven’t a clue what those diabolical authoritarian meat puppets are up to. Why do we have to start eating bugs and forfeiting all earthly belongings and to whom. It is hard to see how we smoothly get to 2023 from 2022.

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“If you think Putin is, by definition, wrong because he attacked first, you have neither read much nor thought very deeply about the Ukraine conflict or the origins of wars.”

2022 The Year in Review: The War in Ukraine (Collum)

We are on the cusp of WWIII, what could become the most inclusive war in history, with world leaders who seem incapable of orchestrating a decisive paintball attack. Like so many, I rely on geopolitical events to learn about politics and geography. Task #1: figure out where Ukraine is located on a map. I stumbled upon this top-secret Pentagon strategy map:

Oh my God. They have already removed Russia! Task #2: resolve spelling and grammar issues. Is it Ukraine or The Ukraine; Odesa or Odessa; Kiev or Kyiv; Zelensky, Zelenskiy, or Zelenskyy; Donbas or Donbass; and Dumbass or Biden? First disclaimer: there is no chance that I can understand a border war in or near the Baltics. I take solace in that y’all are in the same boat. I am grand theorizing—creating big narratives for a hopelessly complex topic—describing the World According to Dave. I am layers into the onion but doubtlessly layers away from truths because I am fishing shit off the internet about a war said by the legendary journalist John Pilger and filmmaker Oliver Stone to be the most propaganda-slathered war in their lifetimes. My immutable rule of thumb: if their lips are moving they are lying.


We can all agree that the list of victims in this war is non-statistically populated by Ukrainians. They are dying, and their world is being upended. If, however, you think that this is a simple story about good versus evil, you need a CT scan. I am especially talking to the devout members of the Sanctimony-Industrial Complex—Eric Hoffer’s fanatical True Believers—who will take any opportunity to be part of a grand movement to elevate their lives by signaling their virtue. I was on a Zoom call with a member of the clergy in which he stated that “it is Putin’s fault because Putin attacked.” I curtly told that punk-ass zealot—quite an impressive one actually— “If I have some guy in my face, and it is clear that this is not going to resolve well, my immediate goal becomes finding a way to land the first punch to ensure there is no second punch.” (I did say that.) Months later I discovered that I had inadvertently paraphrased Putin. If you think Putin is, by definition, wrong because he attacked first, you have neither read much nor thought very deeply about the Ukraine conflict or the origins of wars.

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Shoebill stork

 

 

How to enjoy a shower

 

 


The Etruscan shrew. Smallest mammal in the world by weight at 1.8grams on average. For perspective a paper clip is 1 gram

 

 

Cocker

 

 

Prince

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Dec 052022
 
 December 5, 2022  Posted by at 9:17 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  85 Responses »


Pablo Picasso Chair 1942

 

Elon Musk: Worse Than Hitler (Titania McGrath)
Elon Musk Says There Are More Smoking Guns To Come And He’s Not Suicidal (PM)
Twitter Staff to Face Congress for Censoring Hunter Biden Laptop Story (ET)
A Baseline Understanding Mostly Missing Behind the Twitter Discussion (CTH)
Six Degrees from James Baker: A Familiar Figure Reemerges (Turley)
Katie Hobbs’ Office Contacted Twitter To Censor Posts (PM)
US Republican House Leader Calls For Big Tech Investigation (RT)
EU Desire To Pay For Ukraine Will Ruin Europe For Generations – Orbán (RMX)
EU Must ‘Take Action’ Against US – von der Leyen (RT)
EU Should Sue US – Lawmaker (RT)
Withdrawal Of Russian Weapons Is Key To Nuclear Plant Deal – IAEA Chief (RT)
Italy Justifies Russian Gas Imports (RT)
China Slams US Stationing In Syria, Oil And Grain Looting As Illegal (AlM)
Alameda’s Caroline Ellison Spotted In NY, May Be About To Roll On SBF (ZH)
Database Shows 10,000% Increase In Cancer Reports Due To Covid Vaccines (ARR)
Scientist Who Worked At Wuhan Lab Says Covid Was Man-made Virus (NYP)
What Is The Next Thing That Will Hit Us? It Will Be Huge (Ugo Bardi)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rogan Willink

 

 

 

 

Phones

 

 

 

 

Robert Kennedy Jr.

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Only a fascist would seek to impose free speech on humanity.”

Elon Musk: Worse Than Hitler (Titania McGrath)

It is no exaggeration to say that Elon Musk’s annexation of Twitter is the most terrifying development in recent history. Only a fascist would seek to impose free speech on humanity. This is why there has been such a chorus of execration from left-wing commentators, celebrities and influencers. On the day that Musk seized control of Twitter, Washington Post columnist Taylor Lorenz noted that it was “like the gates of hell opened on this site tonight”. Charlie Warzel in The Atlantic wrote that there was “an apocalyptic feel to the ordeal”. But it was the Independent that really grasped the full gravity of this moment. Its headline read — “RIP Twitter, 2006-2022: Dead at the Hands of Elon Musk”. It is a testament to the cool-headed stoicism of left-wing journalists that they have managed not to overreact.

I also am trying my best to keep matters in perspective, but Musk’s takeover of Twitter is far worse than anything Hitler ever did. I do not approve of mass genocide, but it pales in comparison to providing a social media platform where Eddie Izzard might be misgendered. The whole point of Twitter is to ensure that the masses aren’t exposed to wild conspiracy theories. If tweets aren’t censored, people might start to think that Covid-19 could have originated from a lab in Wuhan, or that there was something dodgy on Hunter Biden’s laptop. Musk has argued that Twitter ought to be a place where all political viewpoints can be aired. But keeping people informed can have dire consequences. Democracy has no chance of working properly if people keep insisting on voting for the wrong candidates.

Like many on the left, I have decided to delete my Twitter account in protest. Musk won’t know what hit him. Without my wisdom on the platform, the company will soon collapse into oblivion. There will be an outcry, share prices will plummet, and Musk will come begging for me to return. But I shall stand firm. Come to think of it, maybe I should wait until next week to delete my account. I’ve got a book to sell.

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“Twitter doesn’t know what’s going on at Twitter,” Musk said. He also noted “it appears that Twitter falsely claimed that there was no election interference.”

Elon Musk Says There Are More Smoking Guns To Come And He’s Not Suicidal (PM)

“Well,” Musk said, “I’m somewhat leaving this up to Matt Taibbi and Bari Weiss. But I think the natural thing would be to say like, ‘okay, what happened after the election? Y’know, Hunter Biden laptop stuff? This may sound bizarre, but Hunter Biden sounds kind of fun, to be honest.” [..] When asked what the next round of a Twitter Files drop would like like, he said “there are more smoking guns.” “Episode two,” he said, would cover information from after the 2020 president election. Speaking to ALX, whose account was only recently restored to the platform, Musk said that all requests from both the Biden campaign and the DNC to Twitter for the purpose of censoring individual users would be released.

In saying that he would release all the files, Musk reference Nelson Mandela, from his home country of South Africa, saying that he was undertaking something like a “truth and reconciliation.” “If you want reconciliation, there must be truth, so that’s the intention here, to just make it clear what was happening and provide transparency about the past, and in doing so, to build trust in the future,” Musk said. A big issue among many users was the use of the terms misinformation and disinformation, used by media outlets, social media moderators, and government officials to suppress contrary narratives and facts about Covid, vaccines, January 6, elections, voting, and other hot button issues.

He was asked about the situation where currently, the government are the “deciders” of what constitutes misinformation and disinformation. “It’s a big deal, I agree,” Musk said, “because the hard part of the situation is that if you don’t want to have government, and especially if they aren’t even an elected officials, maybe someone who is potentially a mid-level executive ministry is deciding this, who people don’t even know and was never elected, despite being a democratic country.” Others commented on his efforts to remove image of child exploitation from the site. “Twitter doesn’t know what’s going on at Twitter,” Musk said. He also noted “it appears that Twitter falsely claimed that there was no election interference.”

“I am definitely not going to be doing any open-air car parades.”

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Under oath, we may hope.

Twitter Staff to Face Congress for Censoring Hunter Biden Laptop Story (ET)

The top Republican on the House Oversight Committee said that Twitter staff involved in suppressing the Hunter Biden laptop story ahead of the 2020 presidential elections will face Congress and testify about their actions. Rep. James Comer (R-Ky.), the GOP ranking member on the Committee, made the remarks in a Friday appearance on Fox News after Twitter’s new owner Elon Musk dropped part one of the so-called “Twitter Files,” an expose of the inner workings of Twitter’s censorship machine. “Every employee at Twitter who was involved in suppressing the Hunter Biden laptop story will have an opportunity to come before Congress and explain their actions to the American people,” Comer told program host Sean Hannity.

Musk and independent journalist Matt Taibbi on Friday unveiled a series of internal Twitter communications that give insight into steps taken by staff at the social media platform around suppressing the New York Post’s Hunter Biden laptop story. Republicans have long accused Twitter—and some media outlets—of suppressing the Hunter Biden laptop story, which included reporting that bolstered claims that the president lied when he said he had no involvement in his son’s overseas business dealings. In order to suppress the Hunter Biden report, Twitter executives marked it as “unsafe,” limiting its spread and even blocking it from being directly shared via the platform’s direct message function, Taibbi said in comments on the disclosures.

He noted that such extreme restrictions were reserved for content such as child pornography. Messages between executives in Twitter’s communications and policy departments, shared by Taibbi in screenshots, show some confusion about the actions taken, with a communications executive writing: “I’m struggling to understand the policy basis for marking this as unsafe.” The disclosures show that both Democrats and Republicans had access to Twitter’s censorship system and each side lodged various requests and complaints with the social media platform’s staff. But because of Twitter employees’ predominantly left-leaning political convictions, Democrats had more avenues to press their case, Taibbi said.

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“What Obama and Holder did was take the preexisting system and retool it, so the weapons of government only targeted one side of the political continuum.”

A Baseline Understanding Mostly Missing Behind the Twitter Discussion (CTH)

Musk noted that in addition to Matt Taibbi he has given the Twitter files to Bari Weiss. However, the debate over what DC bureaucrats did -and are doing- from within the Biden administration, to censor speech, take down social media content and stop information adverse to their political interests, is a futile conversation without the full understanding of the current U.S. surveillance state. Some of the stage participants on the call with Mr. Musk have self-identified as targeted by the intelligence community, some are under active and ongoing investigation, yet they do not seem to have an understanding of what this U.S. social media surveillance system is. We cannot fight our way through the issues until we first realize what lies at the root of the problem.

Barack Obama and Eric Holder did not create a weaponized DOJ and FBI; the institutions were already weaponized by the Patriot Act. What Obama and Holder did was take the preexisting system and retool it, so the weapons of government only targeted one side of the political continuum. This point is where many people understandably get confused. Elevator Speech: (1) The Patriot Act turned the intel surveillance radar from foreign searches for terrorists to domestic searches for terrorists. (2) Obama/Biden then redefined what is a “terrorist” to include their political opposition. After 9/11/01 the electronic surveillance system that was originally created to monitor threats from abroad was retooled to monitor threats inside our country.

That is when all of our electronic ‘metadata’ came under federal surveillance. That inflection point, and the process that followed, was exactly what Edward Snowden tried to point out. What Barack Obama and Eric Holder did with that new construct was refine the internal targeting mechanisms so that only their political opposition became the target of this new national security system. The problems we face now as a country are directly an outcome of two very distinct points that were merged by Barack Obama. (1) The post 9/11 monitoring of electronic communication of American citizens; and (2) Obama’s team creating a fine-tuning knob that it focused on the politics of the targets. This is very important to understand as you dig deeper into this research outline.

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“For censors and political operatives in Twitter, Baker likely seemed like a “made man” for a company committed to systemic censorship.”

Six Degrees from James Baker: A Familiar Figure Reemerges (Turley)

As thousands of Twitter documents are released on the company’s infamous censorship program, much has been confirmed about the use of back channels by Biden and Democratic officials to silence critics on the social media platform. However, one familiar name immediately popped out in the first batch of documents released through journalist Matt Taibbi: James Baker. For many, James Baker is fast becoming the Kevin Bacon of the Russian collusion scandals. Baker has been featured repeatedly in the Russian investigations launched by the Justice Department, including the hoax involving the Russian Alfa Bank. When Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann wanted to plant the bizarre false claim of a secret communications channel between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin, Baker was his go-to, speed-dial contact. [..]

The Bidens had long been accused of influence peddling, nepotism, and other forms of corruption. Moreover, the campaign was not denying that the laptop was Hunter Biden’s and key emails could be confirmed from the other parties involved. However, at the request of the “Biden team” and Democratic operatives, Twitter moved to block the story. It even suspended those who tried to share the allegations with others, including the White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany, who was suspended for linking to the scandal. Even inside Twitter, the move raised serious concerns over the company serving as a censor for the Biden campaign. Global Comms Brandon Borrman who asked if the company could “truthfully claim that this is part of the policy” for barring posts and suspending users. Baker quickly jumped in to support the censorship and said that “it’s reasonable for us to assume that they may have been [hacked] and that caution is warranted.”

Keep in mind that there was never any evidence that this material was hacked. Moreover, there was no evidence of Russian involvement in the laptop. Indeed, U.S. intelligence quickly rejected the Russian disinformation claim. However, Baker insisted that there was a “reasonable” assumption that Russians were behind another major scandal. Faced with a major scandal implicating a Joe Biden in the corrupt selling of access to foreign figures (including some with foreign intelligence associations), Baker’s natural default was to kill the story and stop others from sharing the allegations. The released documents may show why Twitter was so eager to hire Baker despite his role in the Russian collusion controversies. What likely would have been a liability for most companies seemed an actual draw for Twitter. For censors and political operatives in Twitter, Baker likely seemed like a “made man” for a company committed to systemic censorship.

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How to really rig a election. What a joke.

Katie Hobbs’ Office Contacted Twitter To Censor Posts (PM)

Arizona Governor-Elect Katie Hobbs is facing backlash as proof that her office requested for certain tweets to be censored came out of Elon Musk’s release of the “Twitter Files,” the internal documents showing collusion between government officials, campaign teams, and other like actors with the social media giant to silence political dissent. On January 7 2021, the communications director for Hobbs’ Secretary of State office emailed the Center for Internet Security (CIS), a 501 nonprofit cybersecurity organization that “makes the connected world a safer place for people, businesses, and governments through our core competencies of collaboration and innovation,” according to their website.

“I’m flagging this Twitter account for your review,” Hobbs’ comms director wrote to misinformation@cisecurity.org, linking to an unidentified profile. The subject line was “Election Related Misinformation.” The “misinformation” department at CIS then forwarded the message along to an employee at Twitter, writing “Please see this report below from the Arizona SOS office. Please let me know if you have any questions.” “Thank you,” Twitter wrote back. “We will escalate.” About seven hours later, a Twitter employee wrote again; “Thank you… both tweets have been removed from the service.” Copied on this response was an employee at the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), a branch under the federal government’s Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene called for an investigation into the matter, writing, “The SOS of AZ and Gov candidate, Katie Hobbs, used the power of the AZ SOS to collude w/ Twitter to unconstitutionally violate 1st Amendment rights of Americans for her own political gain.” “This is communism and Hobbs can not be governor. I’m calling for a Federal investigation,” she added.

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How much does Big Tech donate to the GOP?

US Republican House Leader Calls For Big Tech Investigation (RT)

The Republican Party must be ready to investigate some of the US’ largest tech firms, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy has declared, in response to recently released documents showing how Twitter suppressed information damaging to Joe Biden in 2020. McCarthy said on Saturday that the incoming Republican majority “will get answers for the American people” about Twitter’s efforts to “silence the truth about Hunter Biden’s laptop just days before the 2020 presidential election.” This will happen when the GOP takes back control of the House of Representatives in January, McCarthy stressed.

Documents released by new Twitter CEO Elon Musk on Friday showed a top-down effort by the platform’s most senior staff to suppress the spread of a New York Post article alleging that Joe Biden took part in numerous pay-to-play schemes with his son’s foreign business contacts whilst he was vice president of the US. Twitter banned the sharing of links to the story, even in private messages. Facebook also took action to censor the Hunter Biden story, with CEO Mark Zuckerberg later saying he was instructed to by the FBI. Appearing on Fox News on Sunday, McCarthy called on the GOP to look beyond just Twitter.

“Now we need to start looking at Facebook, at Google. These now have become arms of the Democratic Party, arms of the Biden administration,” he said. The prospective Speaker also called for the investigation of dozens of former intelligence officials who falsely claimed that the Hunter Biden story had “all the classic earmarks of a Russian information operation.” “[The Democrats] also used the intel community as well to lie to the American public. Should those people keep their clearances? Should those people still be allowed to have information?” he asked. “They used every arm not only of the government, but they had taken over businesses to lie to the American public,” McCarthy continued. “This is just the beginning. All this will be held up.”

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Europe has exactly one voice of reason.

EU Desire To Pay For Ukraine Will Ruin Europe For Generations – Orbán (RMX)

European policies which advocate mass joint borrowing among EU member states to further finance Ukraine’s resistance to the Russian invasion of the country will have devastating consequences for the continent, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán warned on Friday. During an interview on the “Good morning, Hungary!” program on Kossuth Rádió, Orbán slammed the futility of the existing EU sanctions on Russian energy. He also said that “not only our children, but also our grandchildren will suffer the consequences” of the mass joint borrowing scheme proposed by the European Union to continue financing Ukraine’s defense; furthermore, we will also have to pay for the states that become insolvent along the way, he added.

The Hungarian leader reaffirmed his country’s opposition to Brussels financing the operation of the Ukrainian state through joint borrowing, suggesting instead that agreements with Ukraine should be made at the national level through bilateral agreements between individual countries. “We do not want the European Union to become a community or group of jointly indebted states instead of a community of cooperating member states,” Orbán told listeners. He highlighted that Ukraine has now found itself in a situation whereby it is incapable of functioning as an independent nation because of the ongoing conflict, and while it needs help from its neighbors and allies in the short-term, it is not for Brussels to speak on behalf of all member states.

“We accept the need for support, but we are not happy about it; if there was no war, there wouldn’t be this necessity either,” Orbán said. The Hungarian prime minister also discussed the ongoing EU sanctions on Russian energy, including the latest oil sanctions due to come into effect on Dec. 5, which Hungary is exempt from. He warned that any further extension of EU sanctions on Russian gas or nuclear energy would have “tragic consequences” for Hungary, and insisted his nation must be exempt from such a decision. Orbán lamented the failure of the ongoing energy sanctions, which he argued have not brought us “one millimeter closer” to the end of the war.

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In the same breath, she talks about a Russia war crimes tribunal. Relevancy is hard to come by…

EU Must ‘Take Action’ Against US – von der Leyen (RT)

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen warned on Sunday that to be able to compete with the US’ government-subsidized green industry, the EU must “take action” and step up state aid to its own companies. Signed into law by President Joe Biden in August, the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) is – despite its name – a $738 billion spending package that allocates $391 billion toward green energy and climate-friendly industry projects, including $270 billion in tax incentives. Initially lauded by liberals on both sides of the Atlantic, von der Leyen now sees the act as a threat to Europe’s industry.

The IRA’s provision of tax breaks for consumers who buy American products, and manufacturers who produce these products in the US, could “lead to unfair competition, could close markets, and thus fragment critical supply chains,” she told a gathering of students in the Belgian city of Bruges. With these incentives on the one hand, and the EU’s struggles with supply chain bottlenecks and record energy costs on the other, the IRA could place European industry at a disadvantage, she continued. Competition between the US and EU “must respect a level playing field,” she declared. “We must take action to rebalance the playing field, where the IRA and other measures create distortions.” To that end, von der Leyen said that the EU must increase state aid to its own industries, and invest in renewable energy, while lobbying the US to “address some of the most concerning aspects” of the IRA.

Earlier on Sunday, the head of the European Parliament’s trade committee, Bernd Lange, said that pressing the US to rewrite the act is a waste of time, and that the EU should file a complaint with the World Trade Organization instead. While von der Leyen blamed the Europe-wide energy crunch on Russia’s military operation in Ukraine, the EU’s own sanctions on Moscow impeded critical repair work along Russian-EU gas lines before deliveries were reduced. Moreover, the bloc pressed ahead with imposing a price cap on Russian oil on Saturday. On the same day, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Moscow is not planning to recognize the measure. He added that the government is currently carrying out a review of the situation.

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Look, you lost…

EU Should Sue US – Lawmaker (RT)

The EU should file a lawsuit with the World Trade Organization (WTO) against the controversial US Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), Bernd Lange, head of the European Parliament’s Trade Committee, told the Berliner Morgenpost news outlet on Saturday. “My assumption is that the negotiations between the EU and the US will not be able to help agree even on small changes in the implementation of the IRA. The basic structure of the IRA will remain in place. In this regard, I think it is necessary for the EU to quickly file a complaint with the WTO in the coming months,” the lawmaker said ahead of a meeting of the EU-US Trade and Technology Council on Monday, at which the IRA package is expected to be discussed. He added that the lawsuit would help clarify “that the US’s actions are clearly not compatible with WTO regulations.”

The IRA is a $430 billion climate protection and social package passed by the US Congress in August. The package aims to help battle inflation and reduce energy prices, as well as tackling climate change. It offers generous tax breaks for US companies that invest in clean energy and significant subsidies for domestic electric vehicles, batteries and renewable energy projects. The measure has sparked concerns in the EU, with many warning that the “protectionist” legislation may be “discriminatory” towards European companies. French President Emmanuel Macron has slammed the subsidies provision in the IRA as “super aggressive,” while German Economy Minister Robert Habeck has called for a “robust” response to the law from Brussels.

Meanwhile, EU Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton told the newspaper Journal du Dimanche that the legislation would cause a “competitive imbalance” between the EU and other buyers of US goods. He called for the creation of a “European sovereignty fund” which would support industrial projects within the bloc. Lange also suggested the EU should step up its support for domestic industry in the face of the US legislation. “We also have to examine whether and how we can reduce energy prices for our industry, as at the moment they are up to ten times higher than in the US,” he stated.

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Yeah, that’s gonna happen…

Withdrawal Of Russian Weapons Is Key To Nuclear Plant Deal – IAEA Chief (RT)

Any deal for the “protection” of the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant (ZNPP) will involve the withdrawal of Russia’s arms from it, International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) chief Rafael Grossi has stated. Russia and Ukraine have accused each other of shelling the site.Speaking to Italy’s La Repubblica newspaper on Friday, Grossi said that a deal to establish a ‘safe zone’ around the plant could be reached “by the end of the year.” The Ukrainian side is pushing for “the withdrawal of armaments” from the facility, Grossi continued, adding that such a pullback “would in any case be part of the general agreement.”

The largest nuclear power facility in Europe, the Zaporozhye plant was seized by Russian troops shortly after Moscow launched its military operation in Ukraine in late February. The wider region of Zaporozhye, along with three other former Ukrainian territories, eventually joined Russia after holding referendums in September. Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree in October declaring Russian ownership over the plant. Moscow also stated last month that it is open to establishing a demilitarized “security zone” around it, as long as an international monitoring mechanism were put in place. Without such a mechanism, any agreement would be treated like “an empty sheet of paper” by Kiev, Mikhail Ulyanov, Russia’s envoy to international organizations in Vienna, said in November.

Russia has repeatedly accused the Ukrainian military of shelling the plant, and Moscow’s troops have thwarted numerous attempts by Ukraine to retake the facility. Last month, Russian security services said they had foiled a planned “terrorist attack” on the plant orchestrated by the Ukrainian government. Grossi would not say whether he thinks Russia will agree to pull back its weapons, saying only that “Russia is not against an agreement and the principle of plant protection.” The IAEA head added that he hopes to meet Putin, as well as Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky, before a deal is agreed.

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Today the total ban goes into effect. Right.

Italy Justifies Russian Gas Imports (RT)

Italy is still reliant on Russian natural gas, which it continues to import despite calls in the EU for a ban, according to Environment and Energy Security Minister Gilberto Pichetto Fratin. In an interview with La Stampa daily, he said 250 million cubic meters (mcm) of gas entered Italy the previous day, including 90 mcm from Algeria, which has become the country’s “main supplier.” The minister added that 30 mcm are still coming from Russia, with the average daily volume from the sanctioned country reaching around 20 mcm. “Fortunately, another 25 million cubic meters come via Trans Adriatic Gas Pipeline, about 10 million cubic meters from Norway, and 45 million cubic meters of liquefied gas load at our regasification terminals,” the energy minister explained.

He compared Italy’s energy transition plan to a “reversal of the hourglass that leads us to have to search in the South for the gas that previously came from the North and which in the future can also put Italy in a position of advantage over other European countries.” “We haven’t overturned the hourglass yet; Russia continues to have an interest in exporting gas and we are not in a condition of self-sufficiency. We’re not out of the tunnel yet,” he stressed.

According to Pichetto Fratin, Italy will make it through this winter, “but the concern remains strong because from May we have to fill the stocks to cover the next winter season, and this is a difficult undertaking.” Italy, along with other EU countries, has been battling record-high inflation, driven largely by rising energy costs. The country relies on imports for nearly 75% of its energy. At the start of this year, it was receiving 40% of its gas from Russia, but the imports later plunged due to sanctions on Moscow and the sabotage of the Nord Stream pipeline. In October, energy group Eni said that Russia now accounts for only around 10% of Italy’s gas imports.

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“..the US’s smuggling activities have cost Syria more than $100 billion of losses.”

China Slams US Stationing In Syria, Oil And Grain Looting As Illegal (AlM)

The Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson, Zhao Lijian, opened fire on the US’ illegal presence in Syria, shedding light on the continuous US looting of Syrian oil and grain and slamming the US occupation’s missile attacks on the country. In a press conference on December 2, 2022, addressing worldwide media outlets, Lijian said, “The US’s stationing of troops in Syria is illegal. The US’s smuggling of oil and grain from Syria is illegal. The US’s missile attack against Syria is also illegal.” Answering a question by the Chinese Shenzhen TV, whereby they asked the spokesperson to comment on the fact that “on the morning of December 1, the US forces sent 54 oil-laden tankers from northeastern Syria to its bases in northern Iraq, the latest shipment of stolen Syrian oil to be delivered,” Lijian said he noted the relevant reports, slamming the US occupation forces for leaving the Syrian people struggling to survive an anticipated harsh winter, as they continue to loot their oil and grain.


The Chinese diplomat also highlighted the financial losses of the continuous US looting and smuggling of Syrian oil, saying, “According to the official data from the Syrian government, between 2011 and the first half of 2022, the US’s smuggling activities have cost Syria more than $100 billion of losses.” According to Lijian, the US keeps violating international laws and rules, contrary to its claims that it advocates what it calls “the rules-based international order.” “When the US talks about ‘rules’, it is often just trying to find a pretext for serving its own interest and perpetuating its hegemony,” he stressed. The Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson quoted former French Ambassador to the US Gérard Araud as saying that “when the Americans basically want to do whatever they want, including when it’s against international law, as they define it, they do it. And that’s the vision that the rest of the world has of this order.”

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“..continues his deluded daily media appearances while casually throwing his former alleged lover, co-worker and penthouse-mate, Caroline – and pretty much all other co-workers – under the bus..”

Alameda’s Caroline Ellison Spotted In NY, May Be About To Roll On SBF (ZH)

As Sam Bankman-Fried enters day six of his whirlwind media tour in which he makes one or more daily appearances – against the advice of his lawyers – in hopes of convincing someone that he was too dumb to be a criminal mastermind with billions in crypto in cold storage and in bank accounts in Dubai and Singapore (luckily all his wire transfers can be traced), also known as the Simple Jack defense… the weakest link in SBF’s defense was just spotted in a New York coffee shop, amid speculation she is preparing to blow up SBF’s entire defense strategy. According to Autism Capital, the former CEO of Alameda Capital (which as a reminder was ground zero of the FTX implosion after it blew up $8 billion in FTX client funds on trades gone horribly wrong), Caroline Ellison, was spotted at 8:15am this morning at the Ground Support Coffee on West Broad in SoHo Manhattan.


This, as AC notes, “would mean she is not in Hong Kong and is in NY not in custody.” A statement from a barista at the coffee shop confirmed that it was in fact Caroline. Why does this matter? Because while the prominent Democrat donor, who reportedly is “responsible for Biden being in office” and who – at least according to Musk – donated over $1 billion to democrats…continues his deluded daily media appearances while casually throwing his former alleged lover, co-worker and penthouse-mate, Caroline – and pretty much all other co-workers – under the bus by claiming he has no idea how $8 billion in FTX client funds just vaporized in SBF’s personal hedge fund, Alameda (implying that only Alameda’s CEO, Ellison, was responsible for the theft and fraud) Caroline is two-steps ahead of SBF and is already cooperating with members of the DOJ, and specifically the SDNY, which we previously reported is probing the collapse of FTX.

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VAERS.

Database Shows 10,000% Increase In Cancer Reports Due To Covid Vaccines (ARR)

LifeSite is reporting that a researcher who queried the Centers for Disease Control’s (CDC) Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) discovered a 10,661.4% increase in cancer reports as a result of experimental Covid-19 gene-base vaccines as compared with all FDA-approved vaccines over the last 30 years. Brian Shilhavy, who is the editor of Health Impact News, traced his steps in the search providing links to documentation of his various findings. Having first queried the cases of ‘the most common cancers [that] had been reported following Covid-19 vaccines,’ he found “837 cases of cancer, including 88 deaths, 66 permanent disabilities, and 104 life threatening events.

He emphasized that even these numbers were not exhaustive, and the VAERS database could not handle the larger search of ‘ALL cancers listed in VAERS’ under this category of Covid inoculations. ‘Using the exact same search terms for cancer,’ he wrote, ‘I then searched ALL FDA-approved vaccines for the previous 30 years and found only 140 cases of cancer reported. ‘That result is for 360 months (30 years), whereas the 837 cases following the experimental Covid-19 vaccines were reported in just 20 months, since the roll out of the Covid-19 shots beginning in December of 2020,’ Shilhavy wrote. ‘That is an increase of 10,661.4%!’ he concluded.

Shilhavy, whose organization is located in Texas, also made note of the significant number of the cancer cases in the database that were of young people, from age 12 up through many young adults in their 20s. Last October, a Swedish lab study found that the spike protein associated with the Covid-19 illness, and its experimental vaccines, enters the nucleus of cells and significantly interferes with DNA damage-repair functions, compromising a person’s adaptive immunity and perhaps encouraging the formation of cancer cells.

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“..the non-profit helped the Wuhan lab put together the “best existing methods to engineer bat coronaviruses to attack other species” for many years.”

Scientist Who Worked At Wuhan Lab Says Covid Was Man-made Virus (NYP)

A scientist who worked at a controversial research lab in China has claimed that COVID was a man-made virus that leaked from the facility, according to a report. Andrew Huff, who worked for a New York-based non-profit that studied viruses, said COVID leaked from the Wuhan Institute of Virology in China two-plus years ago and blamed authorities for the “biggest US intelligence failure since 9/11,” Britain’s The Sun reported Saturday. The lab has been at the center of fierce debates about the origins of COVID, with both Chinese government officials and lab personnel denying that the virus leaked from the facility. Huff, an epidemiologist, said in his new book, “The Truth About Wuhan,” that the pandemic was the result of the US government’s funding of coronaviruses in China.

He said that China’s gain-of-function experiments were carried out with lax security, which led to a leak at the Wuhan lab. “Foreign laboratories did not have the adequate control measures in place for ensuring proper biosafety, biosecurity, and risk management, ultimately resulting in the lab leak at the Wuhan Institute of Virology,” he said in his book, which was exclusively excerpted in the newspaper. Over the last two years, increasing evidence has suggested that the virus was leaked from the lab. Some experts believe that the virus could have escaped through an infected scientist or the improper disposal of waste from the facility.

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the head of the World Health Organization, told a European politician that he feared that the virus escaped from the lab in “a catastrophic accident” in 2019, according to a report in the Daily Mail earlier this year. Huff is a former vice president of EcoHealth Alliance, a New York-based non-profit that studies infectious diseases. The group has been studying different coronaviruses in bats for more than a decade with funding from the National Institutes of Health, and had forged close ties to the Wuhan lab. Huff, who worked at EcoHealth Alliance from 2014 to 2016, said that the non-profit helped the Wuhan lab put together the “best existing methods to engineer bat coronaviruses to attack other species” for many years.

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“Not only it will harm the evil Putin, but it will reduce oil prices, so everyone in the West should be happy.”

What Is The Next Thing That Will Hit Us? It Will Be Huge (Ugo Bardi)

Do you remember how many things changed during the past 2-3 years, and changed so unbelievably fast? There was a pattern in these changes: one element was that we were told they were just temporary, another that they were done for our sake. We were told that we needed “Two weeks to flatten the curve,” and that “the sanctions will cause the Russian economy to collapse in two weeks,” and many more things. Then, the world would return to normal. Instead, the result was a “new normal,” not at all like the old one. Now, the obvious question is “what next?” More exactly, “what are they going to hit us with, next time?” There is this idea that there may be a new pandemic, a new virus, or the old one returning. But, no. They are smarter than that — so far they have always been one step, maybe two, ahead of us.

They are masters of propaganda, they know that propaganda is all based on memes and that memes have a finite lifetime. Old memes are like old newspapers, they are not interesting anymore. A particular bugaboo can’t scare people for too long, and the idea of scaring us with a pandemic virus is past its usefulness stage. They may have probed us with the “monkeypox” pandemic, and they saw that it didn’t work. It was obvious anyway. So, now what? Let me suggest one possible new way to hit us. You may have heard of it but, so far, it was supposed to be something marginal, not designed to create another “new normal.” But it may. It is huge, it is gigantic, it is arriving. It is the price cap on Russian oil. The idea is that a cartel of countries, mainly Western ones, will agree on prohibiting the import of Russian oil unless it is priced at less than $60 per barrel.

It will also make it more difficult for Russia to export oil abroad even to countries that do not subscribe to the agreement. This idea is, as usual, promoted as a way to help us. Not only it will harm the evil Putin, but it will reduce oil prices, so everyone in the West should be happy. But will it actually work? Unlikely, to say the least, and it is probable that the promoters know that very well. Think about that: it had never happened during the past hundred years that a cartel of countries had intervened to force a certain oil price worldwide. Even during the famed “Oil Crisis” of the 1970s, OPEC never did what it is often accused of having done, fixing a high oil price. OPEC can only set production quotas or sanction certain countries, but it has no power, and never had power, on prices, which are set by the international market.

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Maajid George Webb

 

 

Cryptome

 

 

Vivaldi Accordeon
https://twitter.com/i/status/1599380903830048768

 

 

Bird colors

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Oct 302022
 


Balthus Girl at the window 1955

 

Americans Support Quick Diplomatic End To War In Ukraine (ReSt)
‘Russia Will Lose The Energy Battle,’ Says IEA Chief Fatih Birol (EN)
Russian Energy ‘Will Never Return’ – IEA (RT)
US LNG Cannot Replace The Russian Natural Gas That Europe Has Lost (OP)
Putin: “The Situation Is, To A Certain Extent, Revolutionary” (Escobar)
‘Massive’ Drone Attack On Black Sea Fleet – Russia (BBC)
Russia Suspends Its Participation In Grain Deal (RT)
British Navy Involved In Nord Stream 2 ‘Terrorist Attack’ – Russia (RT)
German Bailout Of Struggling Energy Giant May Reach €60 Billion – BBG (RT)
Orbán Says Hungary Is ‘Exempt’ From The Conflict (Dalos)
Japan Unveils Massive Spending Package (RT)
GM “Paused” Ads on Musk’s Twitter (WS)
Writers, Publishers, Editors Call for Termination of Barrett Book Deal (Turley)
UN Seeks $4 to 6 Trillion Per Year to Address Climate (Mish)

 

 

“Tough times never last but tough people do.”
~Robert H. Schuller

 

 

 

 

Tucker fair fight

 

 

 

 

 

 

Clare Daly

 

 

 

 

Twitter just reinstated Peter McCullough, but there’s more:

Senator Ron Johnson @SenRonJohnson:
“Hearing Dr. Peter McCullough has been stripped of his medical certifications. On what basis did this occur? He has dedicated his life to saving others. This is outrageous and must be reversed.”

 

 

 

 

You read this, you think: a voice of reason. But they still have to resort to blatant lies: “The poll’s release comes after Vladimir Putin doubled down on Russia’s war in Ukraine by mobilizing reserves and issuing threats to use nuclear weapons after recent gains by the Ukrainian military near the country’s eastern border with Russia.”

Putin mentioned nukes exactly once, and that was long before Ukraine’s “recent gains”. It was also not a threat. It was a statement.

Americans Support Quick Diplomatic End To War In Ukraine (ReSt)

Nearly 60 percent of Americans would support the United States engaging in diplomatic efforts “as soon as possible” to end the war in Ukraine, even if that means Ukraine having to make concessions to Russia, according to a new poll. The survey, conducted by Data for Progress on behalf of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, also found that a plurality (49 percent) said the Biden administration and Congress have not done enough diplomatically to help end the war (37 percent said they had). The poll’s release comes after Vladimir Putin doubled down on Russia’s war in Ukraine by mobilizing reserves and issuing threats to use nuclear weapons after recent gains by the Ukrainian military near the country’s eastern border with Russia.


Moscow has also recently orchestrated referendums in some Russian-controlled areas of Ukraine on whether citizens there want to secede and become part of the Russian Federation, leading experts to believe that regardless of the outcome, Putin plans to illegally annex parts of Ukraine. The survey also found that 47 percent said they support the continuation of U.S. military aid to Ukraine only if Washington is involved in ongoing diplomacy to end the war, while 41 percent said they would support aid regardless of whether the United States is engaged in negotiations. Just six percent said Russia’s war in Ukraine is among the top three most important issues facing the United States today, with the top three being inflation (46 percent), jobs and the economy (31 percent), and gun violence (26 percent).

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Fatih Birol has been issuing nonsense for many years. That’s precisely why he’s kept his job all this time.

But it’s very simple: if you have all the “energy”, you cannot lose the battle for it.

‘Russia Will Lose The Energy Battle,’ Says IEA Chief Fatih Birol (EN)

Russia will lose the energy battle it is waging against the West, according to Fatih Birol, the executive director of the International Energy Agency (IEA). “Just before the invasion [of Ukraine], about 65% of the Russian total gas exports went to Europe and 55% of the Russian oil export went to Europe,” Birol told Euronews on Friday afternoon. “Europe was by far the largest market, the largest client for Russia, and Russia lost this client forever. The biggest client.” Birol’s comments appeared to refer to the retaliatory action that the European Union has taken in response to the Ukraine war: a near-total oil embargo of Russian gas and a highly expensive push to diversify gas suppliers, mainly through liquefied natural gas (LNG).

Asked if Russia could replace European clients with other regions, Birol said that would not be easy because “a big chunk” of Russian gas originates in Western Siberia and then flows to Europe via pipelines. Building brand-new pipelines to China or India could take up to 10 years, he predicted, and a significant amount of technology and investment. “You are not selling onions in the market, you are selling natural gas. It’s a different business,” Birol said. “So to replace the natural gas exports to Europe with Russia is, in the short term, a pipe dream.” But Russia is not the only country going through troubled times. In his interview with Euronews, recorded at the IEA’s headquarters in Paris, Birol spoke of an international crisis of unprecedented scope and reach, wreaking havoc in all corners of the world.

“We are in the middle of the first truly global energy crisis. Our world has never, ever witnessed an energy crisis with this depth and with this complexity,” he said. “In the 1970s, we had an oil crisis, but it was only oil. Now we have oil, natural gas, coal, electricity. The reason is very simple: Russia, the country that invaded Ukraine, is the largest energy exporter of the world.” Birol described Europe as the “epicentre” of the storm and characterised its decades-long reliance on cheap Russian fuels as a “mistake” at the root of the present crisis. The IEA chief predicted the continent will be able to make it through the upcoming winter with just some “economic and social bruises” and no major damage — but only if the winter “is not too long and not too cold, and if there are no major surprises.”

Birol, however, expressed greater concern about the 2023-2024 winter, citing three key factors: Europe’s absence of Russian gas, China’s economic recovery and tighter conditions in the LNG markets. “In the next few years, we have to be ready [to deal] with volatile and high energy prices and we have to find solutions,” he said. “But to be very frank, this winter is difficult and next winter may be even harder.”

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More Birol.

Russian Energy ‘Will Never Return’ – IEA (RT)

Russia may “never” regain its position in the global energy market due to Western sanctions in response to the country’s military operation in Ukraine, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said in its yearly World Energy Outlook, published on Thursday. The events in Ukraine are prompting a wholesale reorientation of global energy trade, leaving Russia with a much diminished position.All Russia’s trade ties with Europe based on fossil fuels had ultimately been undercut by Europe’s net zero ambitions, but […] now the rupture has come with a speed that few imagined possible … Russian fossil fuel exports will never return – in any of our scenarios – to the levels seen in 2021,” the agency said. It predicts that Russian oil and gas revenues will drop by more than half in the coming years, from around $75 billion last year to less than $30 billion in 2030.


Western sanctions prompted Russia, which previously supplied around 20% of the globe’s fossil fuels, to reorient its energy exports toward Asian markets, but according to the IEA the country is unsuccessful in finding markets for all of the flows that previously went to Europe. Longer term prospects are weakened by uncertainties over demand, as well as restricted access to international capital and technologies to develop more challenging fields and LNG projects, the agency explained. Overall, according to the IEA the world is facing a crisis of unprecedented depth and complexity in terms of energy, with a profound reorientation of international energy trade already underway. The agency predicts that the energy crisis is likely to force countries to speed up their energy transition, as solar and wind power, as well as electric vehicles, are deemed less vulnerable to political crises and sanctions than fossil fuels.

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Not even close.

US LNG Cannot Replace The Russian Natural Gas That Europe Has Lost (OP)

Europe cannot rely solely on imports of U.S. LNG to offset the pipeline gas supply it will have lost from Russia when it starts rebuilding inventories after the end of this winter, according to BloombergNEF. So far this year, American LNG has been crucial in meeting demand in Europe, which is scrambling for gas supply and willing to pay up for spot deliveries, outbidding most of Asia. The United States is shipping record volumes of LNG to Europe to help EU allies and nearly 70% of all American LNG exports were headed to Europe in September, according to Refinitiv Eikon data cited by Reuters. However, the significant drop in Russian gas supply this year occurred only in June, meaning that Europe could still stock up on some Russian gas earlier this year.

Ahead of the 2023/2024 winter, however, the gap in gas supply in Europe will be much wider without Russian gas. Europe will not be importing much Russian gas—or none at all if Russia cuts off deliveries via the one link left operational via Ukraine and via TurkStream—compared to relatively stable imports from Russia in the first half of this year, before Moscow started gradually cutting volumes via Nord Stream in June until shutting down the pipeline in early September. “The year-on-year increase is not sufficient to offset a total cut in Russian piped supply with under half of these volumes met by LNG increases,” BNEF analyst Arun Toora said.

“The good news is that Russia looks close to having played its last card in terms of gas leverage over Europe. However Europe’s challenges will not disappear with the daffodils next spring,” London-based consultancy Timera Energy said in a winter gas market outlook at the beginning of October. Without most of the Russian gas supply, Europe will likely need to offset around 40 bcm of additional lost Russian flows next year. LNG alone cannot meet this volume, considering a lack of new global liquefaction capacity in the short-term, including in the U.S., limited further demand elasticity in Asia, and European regasification capacity constraints. Therefore, European demand will need to fall, Timera Energy said.

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“Putin in fact did nail where we are: on the edge of a Revolution.”

Putin: “The Situation Is, To A Certain Extent, Revolutionary” (Escobar)

[..] the heart of the matter at Valdai is its 2022 report, “A World Without Superpowers”. The report’s central thesis – eminently correct – is that “the United States and its allies, in fact, no longer enjoy the status of dominant superpower, but the global infrastructure that serves it is still in place.” Of course all major interconnected issues at the current crossroads were precipitated because” Russia became the first major power which, guided by its own ideas of security and fairness, chose to discard the benefits of ‘global peace’ created by the only superpower.” Well, not exactly “global peace”; rather a Mafia-enforced ethos of “our way or the highway”.

The report quite diplomatically characterizes the freezing of Russia’s gold and foreign currency reserves and the “mop up” of Russia’s property abroad as “Western jurisdictions”, “if necessary”, being “guided by political expediency rather than the law”. That’s in fact outright theft, under the shadow of the “rules-based international order”. The report – optimistically – foresees the advent of a sort of normalized “cold peace” as “the best available solution today” – acknowledging at least this is far from guaranteed, and “will not halt the fundamental rebuilding of the international system on new foundations.” The foundation for evolving multipolarity has in fact been presented by the Russia-China strategic partnership only three weeks before imperially-ordered provocations forced Russia to launch the Special Military Operation (SMO).

The Valdai report duly acknowledges the role of Global South medium-sized powers that “exemplify the democratization of international politics” and may “act as shock absorbers during periods of upheaval.” That’s a direct reference to the role of BRICS+ as key protagonists. On the Big Picture across the chessboard, the analysis tends to get more realistic when it considers that “the triumph of ‘the only true idea’ makes effective dialogue and agreement with supporters of different views and values impossible by definition.” Putin alluded to it several times in his address. There’s no evidence whatsoever the Empire and its vassals will be deviating from their normative, imposed, value-laden unilateralism.

As for world politics beginning to “rapidly return to a state of anarchy built on force”, that’s self-evident: only the Empire of Chaos wants to impose anarchy, as it completely ran out of geopolitical and geoeconomic tools to control rebel nations, apart from the sanctions tsunami. So the report is correct when it identifies that the childish neo-Hegelian “end of history” wet dream in the end hit the wall of History: we’re back to the pattern of large scale conflicts between centers of power. And it’s also a fact that “simply changing the ‘operator’ as it happened in earlier centuries” (as in the US taking over from Britain) “just won’t work.” China might harbor a desire to become the new sheriff, but the Beijing leadership definitely is not interested.

And even if that happened the Hegemon would fiercely prevented it, as “the entire system” remains “under its control (primarily finance and the economy).” So the only way out, once again, is multipolarity – which the report characterizes, rather vaguely, as “a world without superpowers”, still in need of “a system of self-regulation, which implies much greater freedom of action and responsibility for such actions.” Stranger things have happened in History. As it stands, we are plunged deep into the maelstrom of complete collapse. Putin in fact did nail where we are: on the edge of a Revolution.

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“..in recent days, Kyiv has accused Moscow of deliberately delaying the passage of ships, creating a queue of more than 170 vessels.”

How does a massive attack solve this?

‘Massive’ Drone Attack On Black Sea Fleet – Russia (BBC)

Russia has accused Ukraine of carrying out a “massive” drone attack on the Black Sea Fleet in the Crimean port city of Sevastopol. The attack began at 04:20 (01:20 GMT) and involved nine aerial and seven marine drones, Russian officials said. At least one warship is said to have been damaged in the strikes. Ukraine has not yet acknowledged the incident. Ukrainian troops have been successfully retaking territory occupied by Russians recently. Russia has replied by launching large-scale attacks on Ukrainian infrastructure, particularly on the country’s energy grid. Mikhail Razvozhaev, the Russian-installed governor of the Sevastopol, said Russia’s navy had repelled the latest attack. The strikes were the “most massive” on the city since Russia launched the invasion of Ukraine in February, Russian state media quoted the governor as saying.

He said that all unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) had been shot down and no “civilian infrastructure” had been damaged. At least one vessel sustained minor damage, the Russian Ministry of Defence said. “In the course of repelling a terrorist attack on the outer roadstead of Sevastopol, the use of naval weapons and naval aviation of the Black Sea Fleet destroyed four marine unmanned vehicles, three more devices were destroyed on the internal roadstead,” a statement from the ministry read. Russia also claimed the ships targeted on Saturday morning were involved in ensuring the “grain corridor” as part of the international initiative to export agricultural products from Ukrainian ports.

The agreement, brokered by the UN and Turkey, allowed Ukraine to resume its Black Sea grain exports, which had been blocked when Russia invaded the country. It was personally negotiated by the UN secretary general and celebrated as a major diplomatic victory that helped ease a global food crisis. But Russia complains that its own exports are still hindered, and has previously suggested it might not renew the deal. In recent days, Kyiv has accused Moscow of deliberately delaying the passage of ships, creating a queue of more than 170 vessels.

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“Russia “is suspending its participation in the implementation of agreements on the export of agricultural products from Ukrainian ports..“

Russia Suspends Its Participation In Grain Deal (RT)

Moscow has halted its compliance with a grain deal with Kiev, brokered by the UN and Türkiye, after Ukraine launched a major drone attack on ships involved in securing safe passage for agricultural cargo, the Russian Defense Ministry announced on Saturday.In a post on its Telegram channel, the ministry said Russia “is suspending its participation in the implementation of agreements on the export of agricultural products from Ukrainian ports”. It explained that the move was prompted by “a terror attack” against the ships of the Black Sea Fleet and civilian vessels involved in ensuring the security of the grain corridor. The ministry also alleged that the bombing was organized with the involvement of British military.

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Still no investigation results. Top secret.

British Navy Involved In Nord Stream 2 ‘Terrorist Attack’ – Russia (RT)

Britain’s Royal Navy played a part in orchestrating and staging the sabotage of the Nord Stream gas pipelines in the Baltic Sea, the Russian Defense Ministry said on Saturday. The accusation follows the Russian Foreign Ministry’s claim that NATO conducted a military exercise during the summer, close to the location where the undersea explosions occurred. Writing on its official Telegram channel, the ministry alleged that Royal Navy operatives “took part in planning, supporting and implementing” a “terrorist attack” to blow up the gas pipelines on September 26. According to the Defense Ministry, the same British operatives were involved in the training of Ukrainian military personnel who recently attacked ships of Russia’s Black Sea fleet, which were implementing a grain deal between Russia and Ukraine, brokered by the UN and Türkiye.

The pipelines, which were built to deliver Russian natural gas directly to Germany, abruptly lost pressure on September 26, following a series of underwater explosions off the Danish island of Bornholm. Both Western countries and Russia sounded the alarm about the incident, with Moscow denouncing it as a terrorist attack and calling for an investigation into the matter. In late September, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova noted that this summer, NATO conducted military drills not far from Bornholm, which featured intensive use of “deep-sea equipment’’. Earlier this month the Wall Street Journal, citing German officials familiar with the investigation, reported that the blasts which damaged the pipelines were caused by sabotage.

While the officials stopped short of naming the culprit, they were said to be “working under the assumption that Russia was behind the blasts.” Moscow has repeatedly denied that it had anything to do with the incident. Meanwhile, Sky News has cited a UK defense official as saying Nord Stream 1 and 2 could have been damaged by a remotely detonated underwater explosive device. At the time, the broadcaster said the pipelines might have been breached by mines lowered to the seabed, or explosives dropped from a boat or planted by an undersea drone.

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At some point, someone will say that is an awful lot of money to keep a bunch of neo-nazis in power.

German Bailout Of Struggling Energy Giant May Reach €60 Billion – BBG (RT)

Berlin is getting ready to boost financial aid to Uniper, the country’s largest gas supplier, which has been brought to the brink of insolvency due to rising energy prices, Bloomberg reported citing sources familiar with the matter. According to the report, the government may up the aid to €60 billion ($60 billion). The plan comes as the company’s financial situation is quickly worsening due to growing wholesale gas prices prompted by diminishing flows from Russia. Uniper’s adjusted net loss for the first nine months of the year reportedly amounted to €3.2 billion ($3.2 billion). And if gas prices do not subside, which is unlikely due to the approaching winter and the subsequent growth in demand, the government will have to spend twice as much to bail out the energy giant than previously expected.

German authorities announced plans to nationalize Uniper last month as part of efforts to keep the energy industry afloat amid the crisis. Uniper has been promised around €31 billion in aid from Berlin’s €200 billion energy aid package. In exchange, the government will acquire a 98.5% stake in the firm, which effectively means its full nationalization. The law cementing the deal is reportedly scheduled to be confirmed by the German Senate on Friday, and the funds could be transferred to Uniper next week, Bloomberg sources said. In an interview with Bloomberg, German Deputy Finance Minister Florian Toncar said Berlin will do all in its power to ensure Uniper remains operational but did not comment on the size of the aid.

“Uniper is a crucial company for the gas supply in Germany, otherwise we wouldn’t jump to such high stakes,” he was cited as saying. While European benchmark gas futures have fallen about 70% from their August highs on nearly full storage and liquefied natural gas (LNG) deliveries, gas prices remain around three times higher than the five-year average. According to Uniper, the company is forced to pay much more for gas now than it did for the pipeline supplies from Russia.

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The Guardian found an anti-Orban Hungarian.

Orbán Says Hungary Is ‘Exempt’ From The Conflict (Dalos)

The invasion of Ukraine on 24 February 2022 will go down in the annals of European history. Russia’s undeclared war has cast an almost apocalyptic shadow. And it has dramatically altered the relationships that had prevailed between east and west since the collapse of the USSR. Whenever or however this armed conflict ends, it will undoubtedly take a long time for a new peace-guaranteeing equilibrium to be established. At the very least, the European Union and Nato now have to reckon with a hostile power on their borders and to prepare for a new phase of the cold war. Hungarians voted in general elections just weeks after the invasion, in April, and it seems reasonable to assume that the war next door had an influence on the result.

Given the climate of fear that the devastating “special military operation” created, Hungarians voted to keep Viktor Orbán’s Fidesz in power rather than risk an untested six-party coalition. This assumption also underlies Orbán’s response, which is to stay out of the conflict to the point of being “exempted”, a position that has been condemned as a betrayal by Hungary’s western allies. Hungary refuses to allow arms shipments destined for Kyiv to transit Hungarian territory and blocks the extension of EU sanctions against Russia to the energy sector. This latter stance is intended to enable an already controversial Russian-Hungarian project to build a nuclear power plant on the Danube (Paks II) to go ahead unaltered. The exemption clearly goes too far, even if Hungary does have special interests that merit consideration.

It has a 136km (84-mile) border with Ukraine and there are roughly 150,000 ethnic Hungarians living in the Transcarpathian oblast in south-west Ukraine, many of them married to Ukrainians. It should be remembered that, while in purely geographical terms, Hungary stayed the same after 1989: the former Hungarian People’s Republic now borders five countries that owe their statehood to the end of the USSR and the dissolution of larger, multi-ethnic entities. To the south, the collapse of the former Yugoslavia led to the creation of Serbia, Croatia and Slovenia. Its northern border is no longer with the former Czechoslovak Socialist Republic but with Republic of Slovakia and independent Ukraine. What now connects most of these newer political entities with Hungary, and indeed its old neighbours, Romania and Austria, is EU membership.

Serbia is on the waiting list, Ukraine has been awarded candidate status. But in the 1990s, all these countries made the transition to parliamentary democracy, during which the rivalries between the various political groups played out openly and, not infrequently, violently. Every twist and turn and every internal conflict in these republics still affects Hungary’s interests because of the Hungarian minorities living there: 1.5 million in Romania, 500,000 in Slovakia, 300,000 in Serbia, 16,000 in Croatia, 15,000 in Slovenia and 150,000 in Ukraine.

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Japanese govt bonds are bought by the BOJ AND the citizens. A closed loop.

Japan Unveils Massive Spending Package (RT)

The Japanese government has announced an economic package worth around 39 trillion yen (nearly $270 billion) to support the economy amid rising inflation and a weakening national currency, broadcaster NHK reported on Friday. The package includes local and central government spending, and is “aimed at overcoming rising prices and reviving the economy… to protect people’s livelihoods and businesses,” Prime Minister Fumio Kishida told reporters in Tokyo. The government plans to lower utility bills to help households save an equivalent of $19 a month on electricity and $6 a month on gas, according to Kyodo News.


Inflation in Japan has seen its sharpest increase in 40 years, with core consumer prices in Tokyo, a leading indicator of nationwide figures, rising 3.4% in October from a year earlier, according to official figures. The increase has been attributed to rising energy, raw material and food prices amid the economic fallout of the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, as well as other factors, the Kyodo News said. The Bank of Japan, however, has been swimming against the global current of increasing interest rates as it kept its short-term interest rate at -0.1% on Friday. Last week, the Japanese yen fell to its weakest level against the dollar since August 1990, having lost more than a fifth of its value against the greenback this year alone.

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“..Twitter, is owned as of yesterday by the CEO and largest shareholder of Tesla. And the automakers that compete with Tesla, and are getting their clocks cleaned by Tesla, are now finding themselves advertising on Elon Musk’s platform.”

GM “Paused” Ads on Musk’s Twitter (WS)

Automakers spend lavishly on advertising, and they advertise heavily in the social media. But now, one of the social media platforms, Twitter, is owned as of yesterday by the CEO and largest shareholder of Tesla. And the automakers that compete with Tesla, and are getting their clocks cleaned by Tesla, are now finding themselves advertising on Elon Musk’s platform. And when you think about it, that’s kind of a hoot. No one likes to advertise on a competitor’s platform, for all sorts of reasons, but particularly because on a social-media platform, the competitor gathers the consumer tracking data and can get important insights into current and potential customers and their reactions to the products and ads – without even passing on those insights to the automaker.

Advertising on a competitor’s social media platform is a particular problem because of the vast amount of user data that those platforms collect – data on your customers and potential customers that you may actually not see yourself, unless the platform decides to share it with you. General Motors is the first automaker out the gate: It announced on the first day after Musk closed the acquisition of Twitter that it “paused” its paid advertising on Twitter. “We are engaging with Twitter to understand the direction of the platform under their new ownership. As is normal course of business with a significant change in a media platform, we have temporarily paused our paid advertising. Our customer care interactions on Twitter will continue,” GM said in a statement emailed to CNBC.

Stellantis, which owns the Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, and Ram brands, among a bunch of other brands, tweeted this morning via its Citroën account, pointing specifically at the issue: “Hello to the social media platform owned by one of our competitors.” This isn’t about advertisers’ concerns, if any, with Musk’s potential content moderation policies. Musk already tried to soothe those fears with his open letter, addressed to advertisers, that was suddenly full of lovey-dovey language, posted on Twitter, of course. “In addition to adhering to the laws of the land, our platform must be warm and welcoming to all.” And he said, “I very much believe that advertising, when done right, can delight, entertain, and inform you.” And he said, “Twitter aspires to be the most respected advertising platform in the world that strengthens your brand and grows your enterprise.”

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“The focus of the letter is the fact that Barrett voted with the majority in the Dobbs decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.”

Writers, Publishers, Editors Call for Termination of Barrett Book Deal (Turley)

We have been discussing the rising support for censorship on the left in the last few years. Silencing opposing views has become an article of faith for many on the left, including leading Democratic leaders from President Joe Biden to former President Barack Obama. What is most distressing is how many journalists and writers have joined the call for censorship. However, even with this growing movement, the letter of hundreds of “literary figures” this week to Penguin Random House is chilling. The editors and writers call on the company to rescind a book deal with Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett because they disagree with her judicial philosophy. After all, why burn books when you can simply ban them?

The public letter entitled “We Dissent” makes the usual absurd protestation that, just because we are seeking to ban books of those with opposing views, we still “care deeply about freedom of speech.” They simply justify their anti-free speech position by insisting that any harm “in the form of censorship” is less than “the form of assault on inalienable human rights” in opposing abortion or other constitutional rights. Yet, the letter is not simply dangerous. It is perfectly delusional. While calling for the book to be blocked, the writers bizarrely insist “we are not calling for censorship.” While the letter has been described as signed by “literary figures,” it actually contains many who are loosely connected to the “broader literary community” like “Philip Tuley, Imam” and “Barbara Hirsch, Avid reader.” It also includes many who are simply identified by initials or first names like “Leslie” without any stated connection.

Nevertheless, there are many editors and publishing figures who list their companies (including HarperCollins, Random House and other companies) and university presses (including Cambridge, Harvard, Michigan Northwestern, Oxford) with their titles in calling for censorship. The list speaks loudly to why dissenting or conservative authors find it more difficult to publish today. These are editors who are publicly calling for banning the publication of those who hold opposing views from their own. It also includes academics like Ignacio Leopoldo Götz Römer, Stessin Distinguished Professor Emeritus, New College of Hofstra University and Carole DeSanti, Elizabeth Drew Professor of English Language and Literature, Smith College (and former VP and Exec Ed, PenguinRandomHouse).

The focus of the letter is the fact that Barrett voted with the majority in the Dobbs decision to overturn Roe v. Wade. Barrett has been the singled out in the past due to her judicial philosophy (which is shared by many federal judges and millions of citizens). Her home has been targeted and activists have published school information on her young children. Recently, Rhodes College alumni sought to strip references to Barrett from the college because they disagree with her views. Her college sorority was even forced to apologize for simply congratulating her for being one of a handful of women to be nominated to the high court. No attack appears to be beyond the pale for media or the left. Barrett sat through days of such baseless attacks on her character, but even had to face attacks referencing her children. Ibram X. Kendi, the director of the Center for Antiracist Research at Boston University, claimed that her adoption of two Haitian children raised the image of a “white colonizer” and suggested that the children were little more than props for their mother.

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We’re rich!

UN Seeks $4 to 6 Trillion Per Year to Address Climate (Mish)

The Guardian reports UN finds ‘no credible pathway to 1.5C in place’: “The UN environment report analysed the gap between the CO2 cuts pledged by countries and the cuts needed to limit any rise in global temperature to 1.5C, the internationally agreed target. Progress has been “woefully inadequate” it concluded. Current pledges for action by 2030, if delivered in full, would mean a rise in global heating of about 2.5C and catastrophic extreme weather around the world. A rise of 1C to date has caused climate disasters in countries from Pakistan to Puerto Rico. If the long-term pledges by countries to hit net zero emissions by 2050 were delivered, global temperature would rise by 1.8C. But the glacial pace of action means meeting even this temperature limit was not credible, the UN report said. A study published this week found “large consensus” across all published research that new oil and gas fields are “incompatible” with the 1.5C target.”

What Would It Cost? Hooray! Only $4 trillion to 6 trillion per year. “A global transformation from a heavily fossil fuel- and unsustainable land use-dependent economy to a low-carbon economy is expected to require investments of at least US$4–6 trillion a year,” stated the UN report (page 26 of 132).
Q: US$4–6 trillion a year for how many years?
A: Based on figure ES.6 (lead chart) least eight years.
Q: What Percent of GDP?
A: 4 to 9 percent for developing countries, and 2 to 4 percent for developed countries. And developing countries will gladly fork over up to 9 percent of GDP every year for eight years. Yeah, right. Meanwhile, the EU is burning more trees and coal. Burning trees is magically deemed environmentally neutral.

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Elephant drum
https://twitter.com/i/status/1586018731385397248

 

 

 

 

Steller’s sea eagle
https://twitter.com/i/status/1586251819071590400

 

 

 

 

Good boi

 

 

 

 

Lyrebird

 

 

 

 

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Oct 162022
 
 October 16, 2022  Posted by at 8:15 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  45 Responses »


Rembrandt van Rijn Self-portrait 1629

 

Germany’s Failing ‘Stored’ Nat-gas & LNG Experiment (Vilches)
Nord Stream Saboteurs Plunged EU Into ‘Energy Poverty’ – Moscow (RT)
White House Comments On Paying For Starlink Service For Ukraine (RT)
Musk Makes U-turn On Starlink Service For Ukraine (RT)
Elon Musk Discovers Ukrainian ‘Kill List’ (RT)
The Ideological Tyranny of Liberal Interventionism (Ghorayeb)
European Auto Industry In Trouble – S&P (RT)
How 4,000 People From Groningen Managed To Turn Off The Gas Tap (NOS)
Strong US Dollar Is A Headache – IMF (RT)
Central Bank of G20 Host Indonesia Rails Against US Dollar (RT)
Will Beijing Join With Russia vs The West Or Keep Its Powder Dry? (Hvatkov)
Orban Warns Of ‘Protracted War’ (RT)
Hiding Hunter’s Laptop (Hanson)
Yes, They Claimed The Vaccines Would Prevent Transmission (Chung)
Twitter is a Weapon, not a Business (Robert Malone)

 

 

What an odd list.

 

 

John Maersheimer 2014

 

 

Walker

 

 

“Leave the climate activists glued to the wall. Make it an interactive exhibit by allowing patrons to throw tomato sauce at them and donate the proceeds to planting trees.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jinglemerkel Santakaputt.

“.. at the very best only 25% to 30% of the “supposed” 90% reserves could possibly ever be timely recovered and only very slowly through a period of time stretched out in months. ”

Germany’s Failing ‘Stored’ Nat-gas & LNG Experiment (Vilches)

Be that as it may, and as per the US State Dept. the NS1 and NS2 pipeline sabotage would supposedly have “no impact on European energy resilience”… then we should guess that Germans should just enjoy their Oktoberfest and — why not ? — also prepare to celebrate Christmas 2022 as if nothing negative had happened. On the contrary, if technical brain-power (currently AWOL) prevailed, then career strategists both sides of the Atlantic would now be spending all day and night trying to brush up hard on nat-gas management 101, better yet with a touch of sophomoric physics if all possible. And thus no-nonsense contingency plans would already be prepared and under deployment.

The reason is, as explained below, by EU and German design and commitment this is a failing EXPERIMENT. The planned ´stored´ nat-gas & LNG supply strategies have never ever been applied in equivalent circumstances with this strange methodology and humongous scale. Thusly, the 2022 German Oktoberfest will probably turn into a very acid sauerkraut with solid-beer icicles bizarrely hanging from the spouts. The Main Event would still be the December 2022 ´Jinglemerkel Santakaputt´ with nowhere to hide as all of Europe would be undergoing a thorough DE-industrialization process with sharp lowering of standards of living, and in many areas most probably with food issues, darkness & cold, deep frustration and un-heard-of unemployment with massive migrants wishing they had stayed back home (yes).

Be it from Qatar, Norway, or the US… or Russia…Liquefied Natural Gas cannot and will not save the day for Europe. First of all, LNG is and will be for a huge long time to come very scarce worldwide. Furthermore, there are very few loading and unloading terminals available at either end. For example, Germany has 0 (zero) LNG terminals. None. And even some loading terminals at source docks that are already built have serious operational problems or simply do not meet EU standards. Besides, there are not anywhere near enough LNG tankers available and very few are under construction. Who needed ugly dirty fracked LNG only 6 months ago ? And these infrastructure beasts take very long time to be conceived, approved, designed, funded, built, commissioned, certified, and offered to the market.

But it gets worse because many wrongly imagine that fracked sea-borne Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) is a substitute of nat-gas (not). First, it´s terribly more expensive, most explosive & dangerous to handle, and definetly way too scarce to meet European needs. Environmentally, LNG is “fracking” dirty and very cumbersome to liquefy, load and re-gassify with yet non-existant infrastructure at both ends… and is far more difficult to store and many times more costly to freight (Suez could be a limitation) from ackward overseas sources yet unknown (in tankers that do not yet exist) and only in risky seaborne batches onto many dozens of delivery terminals not yet built nor adequately planned for…

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“Stockholm has rejected a plan to set up an official joint investigation team together with Germany and Denmark to look into the explosions [..] All three nations also refused to grant Russia access to the probe. ”

Nord Stream Saboteurs Plunged EU Into ‘Energy Poverty’ – Moscow (RT)

The perpetrators behind the attacks on Nord Stream 1 and 2 natural gas pipelines have destroyed the European Union’s hope of secure and sustainable energy supply, Deputy Prime Minister Aleksander Novak has said on the sidelines of the Russian Energy Week forum. “Those who had plotted and perpetrated this terrorist act have basically plunged Europe into an energy poverty, so to speak,” Novak said on Friday, adding that the sabotage of the pipelines has all but “nullified the energy security” the EU has long sought to achieve. The former energy minister previously said that Russia is still able to supply natural gas to the European Union through a string of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline that remains intact. According to President Vladimir Putin the ball was now in the EU’s court on whether it wanted this to happen.

Putin also suggested establishing a new “gas hub” in Türkiye to move the transit volumes to the Black Sea region. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan backed the idea during the leaders’ meeting earlier this week. The Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines, designed to carry Russian natural gas directly to Germany, bypassing transit states, including Ukraine and Poland, abruptly lost pressure last month, following a series of powerful underwater explosions off the Danish island of Bornholm. Moscow has called the incident a terrorist attack and said the US, a long-time critic of Germany’s reliance on Russian energy, stood to benefit most from the disabling of the routes, both politically and economically. Washington has denied any involvement. However, Secretary of State Antony Blinken hailed the incident as a “tremendous opportunity” for Europe “to once and for all remove the dependence on Russian energy.”

In the meantime, Stockholm has rejected a plan to set up an official joint investigation team together with Germany and Denmark to look into the explosions, Reuters reported, citing a Swedish investigator. Sweden allegedly argued that its own findings are too sensitive to share even with other EU nations. All three nations also refused to grant Russia access to the probe. Russia used to cover over 40% of the EU’s gas needs prior to the start of the military operation in Ukraine and ensuing sanctions. Supplies dropped dramatically this year, exacerbating the energy crisis, as the bloc is seeking to cut itself off from Russian energy to reduce its dependence and punish Moscow. The US, meanwhile, ramped up its supply of LNG to Europe over the past months, up to a point where it now accounts for nearly half of the bloc’s LNG imports, nearly twice the share recorded in 2021.

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..“burning” around $20 million per month on safeguarding the services from cyberattacks and jamming..”

White House Comments On Paying For Starlink Service For Ukraine (RT)

The Pentagon and US allies are exploring all options to maintain Starlink satellite services for Ukraine after tycoon Elon Musk said he’s no longer willing to provide the communications for free, the White House press secretary has said. During a briefing on Friday, Karine Jean-Pierre was asked if the Biden administration had considered Musk’s request for the Pentagon to foot the bill for satellite internet communications in Ukraine. “Look, we understand the importance of these capabilities to ensure stable communications for Ukraine’s forces in particular,” Jean-Pierre responded. Starlink, operated by Musk’s SpaceX company, has become the main communication tool for Ukraine’s forces since the start of the conflict with Russia.

According to the spokeswoman, the Pentagon is “working with allies and partners to look at all options on how best to support those needs identified by Ukraine specifically.” Further questions on the matter should be referred to the Department of Defense, she added. Pentagon Press Secretary Sabrina Singh confirmed on Friday that “the department has been in communication with SpaceX regarding Starlink,” but declined to expand on the nature of those contacts. The DoD understands the “fragility” of satellite communications and their importance for Ukraine “not just on the battlefield, but within the country itself,” Singh said. On Thursday CNN published a letter, which it said SpaceX had sent to the Pentagon in September, demanding that it cover the cost of operating the system in Ukraine. The company is no longer “in a position to further donate terminals to Ukraine, or fund the existing terminals for an indefinite period of time,” the document read.

Musk reacted to the report by pointing out that his “competitors in space launch and communications,” Lockheed Martin and Boeing, had jointly received over $60 billion in defense contracts in 2021 alone. The entrepreneur explained in a series of tweets how keeping up “warfront” communications was much more difficult and expensive. He said his aerospace company was allegedly forced to divert “massive resources” and was “burning” around $20 million per month on safeguarding the services from cyberattacks and jamming. “Russia is actively trying to kill Starlink,” Musk claimed, warning that it could well succeed in its efforts. “Starlink is the primary communications system of the Ukrainian army on the war front. If anyone else wants this job, please be my guest,” he wrote.

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“..the cost of the internet service in Ukraine, which could amount up to $ 400 million over the next year..”

Musk Makes U-turn On Starlink Service For Ukraine (RT)

The SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has made an abrupt U-turn on his decision to stop funding the operation of the Starlink satellite communication service in Ukraine, where it has been actively used by the Ukrainian troops. Earlier, SpaceX reportedly asked the Pentagon to cover the cost of the internet service in Ukraine, which could amount up to $ 400 million over the next year. “We’ll just keep funding Ukraine government for free,” Musk wrote in a tweet on Saturday, adding that SpaceX would do it “even though Starlink is still losing money and other companies are getting billions of taxpayer dollars.” Earlier, the SpaceX CEO pointed to the fact that his “competitors in space launch and communications,” Lockheed Martin and Boeing, had jointly received over $60 billion in defense contracts in 2021 alone.

The entrepreneur also complained in a series of tweets that keeping up “warfront” communications was difficult and expensive. He also stated that Russia was “actively trying to kill Starlink,” forcing the US company to spend some $20 million per month on safeguarding the services from cyberattacks and jamming. On Thursday, CNN obtained a letter, where Musk supposedly informed the Pentagon his company was “not in a position to further donate terminals to Ukraine, or fund the existing terminals for an indefinite period of time.” SpaceX has donated around 20,000 Starlink satellite units to Ukraine since the beginning of the conflict in late February, providing internet connection and military coordination in chaotic battlegrounds that would otherwise be cut off from the web.

Kiev then praised the terminals as an “essential part of critical infrastructure” but continued to urge SpaceX to send thousands of additional terminals. Musk previously stated that SpaceX would have spent more than $100 million providing Starlink services to Ukraine by the end of the year. At the same time, the company reportedly admitted that most units it had sent to Ukraine were partially or fully funded by the American, British and Polish governments. SpaceX also recently came under fire over alleged Starlink outages across some regions of Ukraine, which some Ukrainian soldiers described as “catastrophic” loss of communications, according to Financial Times.

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“The website has published personal details – names, addresses, photos, social media pages – of children, the youngest of whom is not even 10 years old..”

Elon Musk Discovers Ukrainian ‘Kill List’ (RT)

Elon Musk has expressed concerns over a controversial website that lists supposed enemies of Kiev, amid claims that his own name briefly appeared on Mirotvorets following his threats to cut funding for Starlink satellite internet services actively used by the Ukrainian troops. “Is this list real? What’s the URL?” the SpaceX CEO tweeted in response to independent journalist Eva Karene Bartlett, who on Friday shared a viral screenshot that claims to show his persona added to the notorious database. “I’ve been speaking and writing about this list for years, after being placed on it in 2019, but now that Musk is on it, after Roger Waters and others, perhaps the ‘peacemaker’ list might itself be killed…,” Bartlett wrote.

Elon Musk’s name was not on the list as of Saturday, and it remains unclear whether it indeed briefly appeared on Mirotvorets. Some reports alleged his profile was swiftly scrubbed from the database, while Ukrainian activists claimed the picture was fake and called it a Russian provocation. Many of Musk’s followers were surprised to find out that he’d never heard of Mirotvorets before, and bombarded him with examples of prominent public figures on the database, some already marked “liquidated.” Musk admitted it was “concerning,” after checking with Wikipedia that such a list does indeed exist, and was allowed to stay online since 2014. Mirotvorets, or “Peacemaker,” is a supposedly independent database of individuals whom anonymous moderators consider to be threats to Ukrainian national security.

The site denies being a kill list; rather, it claims to be a source of information for law-enforcement agencies and “special services” about pro-Russian terrorists, separatists and war criminals, among others. It allegedly has links to Ukraine’s Interior Ministry. The Mirotvorets project gained some notoriety in 2015, when writer and historian Oles Buzina and politician Oleg Kalashnikov were assassinated in Ukraine after their profiles appeared on the website. In 2016, EU officials and journalist groups condemned Mirotvorets for leaking data on more than 4,000 members of the media. Human rights activists have discovered that the website features the personal details of 327 children, prompting the Russian authorities to share their concerns over this “huge injustice” with UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres. The website has published personal details – names, addresses, photos, social media pages – of children, the youngest of whom is not even 10 years old yet, according to the head of the Foundation for the Fight against Repressions.

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“..American and Ukrainian politicians—along with their loyal supporters—are not actually interested in real support for the Ukrainian people. What they want is compliance and consensus for their foreign policy endeavors.”

The Ideological Tyranny of Liberal Interventionism (Ghorayeb)

Since the outbreak of the Russo-Ukrainian War this year, celebrities and public figures have been unanimous in their moral support for Ukraine. Some, like Telsa CEO Elon Musk, have gone further than words, lending significant material support to the cause. His spacecraft company, SpaceX, paid $80 million to provide Ukraine with the services of Starlink, which, among other things, enables Ukrainian troops to operate drones and communicate with each other. Musk has explicitly declared himself “pro-Ukraine.” A normal person would therefore view Musk, a self-professed centrist, as supporting an ally of the American government against the ravages of war.

However, Musk’s material and moral contributions mattered little when he proposed a peace plan outside the bounds of the liberal internationalist consensus. Russia, Musk tweeted, should be allowed to keep Crimea, and Ukraine should end its bit to join NATO and adopt a neutral status. Musk’s diplomatic musings swiftly drew the ire of the Ukrainian government and its supporters. It also attracted resentful remarks from his own government. Senator Lindsey Graham went on an angry rant against Musk that culminated in a call to cut electric vehicle tax credits, which he mistakenly thought benefitted Tesla. Elon’s car buyers haven’t qualified for a tax credit since 2018.

One may wonder why there is such intense outrage against Musk or why expressing an anti-war opinion is akin to providing support for Putin. Why is it that one tweet with a peace proposal has become a more powerful expression of Musk’s position than $80 million worth of material aid to Ukraine and numerous declarations of support? The reason is that American and Ukrainian politicians—along with their loyal supporters—are not actually interested in real support for the Ukrainian people. What they want is compliance and consensus for their foreign policy endeavors. Media outlets have noticeably censored and attempted to silence opinions that deviate from a consensus that stops short of extravagant government spending on weapons for Ukraine and unwavering admiration for Zelensky.

[..] Ideally, there would be a moral consensus against killing innocent people with room for civil political debate about the root causes of these wars, how we can de-escalate or end ongoing violence, and how to prevent them in the future. One could have contested Musk’s proposal with a counterargument about whether it is the optimal way of reaching what most people agree is wrong: killing innocent people. But this would only be possible if everyone involved in the discourse was concerned with achieving the end of the war and pursuing truth. However, the U.S. foreign policy elite—who have nakedly pursued their interests through intervention in the region before—and Ukraine’s corrupt president do not show an interest in either.

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No, electric cars won’t solve the problem..

European Auto Industry In Trouble – S&P (RT)

With energy prices in EU skyrocketing, a harsh winter could shut down production in parts of the automotive sector, S&P Global Mobility reported this week. According to a report titled “Winter is Coming,” the “combined black swan events” of the Covid-19 pandemic and the war in Ukraine have stretched automotive supply lines, especially with regard to semiconductors. As a result, the industry “may face extensive pressure” from energy costs in the coming months. Starting in the fourth quarter of 2022 through 2023, quarterly production from Europe-based auto manufacturing plants is forecast to be between 4 and 4.5-million-units. However, “with potential utility restrictions,” that output could fall to as low as 2.75 million units per quarter, the report says.

The researcher projected significant supply chain disruptions from November through spring, citing mandatory energy rationing for the region’s auto producers and suppliers. “For an industry already struggling with low inventories of vehicles in dealer showrooms, an additional crisis could be incapacitating on a global scale,” it said. Edwin Pope, S&P Global Mobility principal analyst for materials and lightweighting, pointed out that “If you look through the supply chain – particularly where there’s any metallic structure forming through pressing, welding or extrusion – there’s a tremendous amount of energy involved.

“Total energy usage in these companies could be up to one-and-a-half times what we’re seeing in vehicle assembly today. Anecdotally, we’re hearing that some of this manufacturing capacity is becoming so uneconomic that companies are simply shutting up shop.” He also told Reuters that S&P Global Mobility’s analysis was conducted before the sabotage on the Russian Nord Stream gas pipelines late last month. “Events like that will inevitably shift the scales towards the lower end of what we have predicted, especially in terms of how long it takes to repair things of this nature,” Pope warned.

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Google translate.

“They only wanted to continue if the State imposed a production obligation on them, took over the liability and thus also the risk of prosecution.”

How 4,000 People From Groningen Managed To Turn Off The Gas Tap (NOS)

Only the threat of a criminal case would force oil companies Shell and Exxon to extract less gas in Groningen after the severe earthquake in 2012. A retired criminal court advised action group Groninger Soil Movement (GBB) to use heavy artillery. Public hearings by the Groningen parliamentary committee of inquiry for natural gas extraction have shown in recent weeks how great the impact of that advice has been. The committee closed those hearings yesterday. The GBB first filed a report on behalf of 4000 members in vain: the Public Prosecution Service saw no reason to prosecute NAM. The people of Groningen then asked the court in Arnhem to force the Public Prosecution Service to conduct such a criminal investigation.

In April 2017, the court ruled in their favor. The Public Prosecution Service should investigate whether gas extraction company NAM, a subsidiary of Shell and Exxon, has endangered Groningers. The case is still pending and has cost the GBB two tons in lawyers’ fees, but the effect was maximum. Ben van Beurden, the CEO of Shell, calls that criminal case a “game changer”. His company was suddenly accused of endangering people’s lives by extracting gas. His employees could be personally prosecuted for this. Shell and Exxon informed the Ministry of Economic Affairs that they wanted to stop gas production in Groningen. They only wanted to continue if the State imposed a production obligation on them, took over the liability and thus also the risk of prosecution.

Every other gas field in the world would be closed if it turns out that winning is not safe, both Rolf de Jong of Exxon and Van Beurden of Shell said. But they also realized that it was impossible to stop because Dutch households, hospitals and much industry depend on Groningen gas. It was one of the most startling issues to surface in the public hearings. Until then, the image was that former Minister Wiebes of Economic Affairs had single-handedly decided in 2018 to end gas extraction in Groningen in 2030. That was inescapable, he said, because the State Supervision of Mines then found that gas extraction might have to stop altogether to limit the risk of even more earthquakes. Moreover, the reinforcement operation, the reinforcement of unsafe houses, was completely out of control.

Many more houses had to be reinforced than the ministry wanted and, according to gas extraction company NAM, was necessary. Furthermore, it appeared from the interrogations that the cabinet was not in a hurry with the request of the oil companies. They feared that Shell and Exxon wanted to take the opportunity to also change the historic agreements on profit sharing. The two multinationals and the State divide the gas revenues, with the largest part of the profit (90 percent) going to the State. These are agreements that were made when gas extraction started in the early 1960s.

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“..appreciated 22% against the Japanese yen, 13% against the euro and 6% against emerging market currencies since the start of this year..”

Strong US Dollar Is A Headache – IMF (RT)

As countries around the world struggle to bring down soaring inflation, the weakening of their currencies relative to the US dollar has made that fight even harder, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has said. In a report published on Friday, the IMF elaborated how countries should respond to a strong dollar. It highlighted that the greenback is at its highest level since 2000, having appreciated 22% against the Japanese yen, 13% against the euro and 6% against emerging market currencies since the start of this year. “Such a sharp strengthening of the dollar in a matter of months has sizable macroeconomic implications for almost all countries, given the dominance of the dollar in international trade and finance,” the lender wrote.

It further indicated that while the US share in world merchandise exports has declined from 12% to 8% since 2000, the dollar’s share in world exports has held at around 40%. “On average, the estimated pass-through of a 10 percent dollar appreciation into inflation is 1 percent. Such pressures are especially acute in emerging markets, reflecting their higher import dependency and greater share of dollar-invoiced imports compared with advanced economies.” According to the report, approximately half of all cross-border loans and international debt securities are denominated in US dollars. While emerging market governments have made progress in issuing debt in their own currency, their private corporate sectors have high levels of dollar-denominated debt.

“As world interest rates rise, financial conditions have tightened considerably for many countries. A stronger dollar only compounds these pressures, especially for some emerging market and many low-income countries that are already at a high risk of debt distress,” the IMF said. The report suggested that the appropriate policy response is to allow the exchange rate to adjust, while using monetary policy to keep inflation close to its target. “The higher price of imported goods will help bring about the necessary adjustment to the fundamental shocks as it reduces imports, which in turn helps with reducing the buildup of external debt. Fiscal policy should be used to support the most vulnerable without jeopardizing inflation goals,” it said.

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“.. transactions in foreign currencies incur conversion costs, and when they are in US dollars, “the conversion fee is doubled..”

Central Bank of G20 Host Indonesia Rails Against US Dollar (RT)

Indonesia’s central bank has spoken out against the use of the US dollar in export-import transactions, and called for a switch to local currencies in international payments to reduce dependence on the greenback, news portal Tempo.co reported on Friday. Most of Indonesia’s international trade transactions are conducted in foreign currencies, predominantly the dollar, according to Nugroho Joko Prastowo, head of Bank Indonesia’s Solo Representative Office, as cited by local media. “90% of export-import settlements are in US dollars, when in fact the value of Indonesia’s direct exports to the US is only 10%, and the value of US imports is only 5%,” the official told journalists after opening a session on ‘Utilizing Local Currency Settlement (LCS) to Increase Export-Import Efficiency of the Greater Solo Region’.


He said transactions in foreign currencies incur conversion costs, and when they are in US dollars, “the conversion fee is doubled,” suggesting that a system of bilateral payments in local currency could solve the problem. The official said four countries have agreed to utilize LCS with Indonesia so far, namely China, Japan, Thailand and Malaysia. “Singapore has been plotted, although it has not been fully implemented, and soon the Philippines. Currently, the implementation of LCS with Saudi Arabia is also being explored,” he said. Indonesia will be hosting the G20 international forum, bringing together 19 countries and the European Union, on November 15-16 on the island of Bali. Indonesia currently holds the presidency of the group of leading economies.

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‘small fortresses with high walls’

Will Beijing Join With Russia vs The West Or Keep Its Powder Dry? (Hvatkov)

The 20th National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party, the pinnacle event in the country’s political life and held only every five years, kicks off in Beijing on October 16. Experts will be tuning in to pick up any signals related not only to the political standing and prospects of China’s leader Xi Jinping, who is likely to run for a third term, but also to the way the country is planning to build its relations with the US and Russia in the future. A new Mao – a new revolution? Western speculation believes that the event could signify a triumph for Xi as he will most likely remain at the helm of the party for a third term. Should that happen, it would go against the tradition which has formed in Chinese politics over the last 30 years. Up to now, the reins of power in the country were handed over to a new generation of leaders at the end of the second term. Thus, such a move would herald a new era in the history of modern China. Starting from 2018, it has become increasingly clear that Xi is going to defy this tradition. That year, amendments were made to the Chinese Constitution lifting the two-term limit on the presidency.

[..] Experts doubt that Beijing will abandon its policy of prudence and caution, and there are a number of reasons for that. “Much of what Vladimir Putin said in his speech at the accession ceremony is in line with China’s own attitudes. But when China talks about similar matters, the wording is often much broader and generally ambiguous. Naturally, Beijing is aware that its confrontation with the West is getting more intense. However, at the level of rhetoric, China tries to avoid being as explicit when expressing its position. Moscow and Beijing have similar viewpoints in that both believe the policies of the West are flawed, as they create artificial barriers to global trade, financial and economic ties and investment opportunities,” Lomanov said.

“China also criticizes the West for building ‘small fortresses with high walls’, referring to blocs like NATO and AUKUS, exclusive alliances designed to unite Western countries and those loyal to them, effectively cutting off everyone else. “China has always stressed the need to reform the existing system of global governance, as it is deeply unfair to developing countries. Despite all its leaps in economic development, China considers itself both a socialist country and the world’s leading developing nation. Therefore, at a practical level, the positions of Russia and China are indeed very close,” the expert from IMEMO RAS believes.

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“anyone who thinks NATO will protect us is wrong.”

Orban Warns Of ‘Protracted War’ (RT)

Prime Minister Viktor Orban said that Hungary needs an army “capable of striking and ensuring peace” in case the continent plunges into chaos over the ongoing conflict in Ukraine and the European Union’s failed policies towards Russia.“We cannot, like ostriches, bury our heads in the sand. We must accept the reality: if this continues, the economy of the continent will collapse, people will be in danger, and it seems that we must prepare for a protracted war,” Orban said on Saturday in Budapest, at a swearing-in ceremony of military volunteers. The Hungarian leader noted that “there are nations that have already begun making preparations and we can’t fall behind in this either,” as cited by the Budapest Times. “In times of war, we need an army capable of striking and capable of ensuring peace!” he told a group of some 250 young recruits, praising them as the “excellence of our nation.”


He added that Hungary needs “a few more” such battalions and announced new recruitment campaigns to be launched from December. Hungary, which is heavily dependent on Russian energy, has maintained a relatively neutral stance during the conflict in Ukraine, condemning the use of force by Moscow, but refusing to supply weapons to Kiev. Orban has frequently criticized the EU’s sanctions on Russia, calling them counterproductive. Over the past months, he has repeatedly called for “the failed policy of Brussels” to be changed, noting that the sanctions “didn’t fulfill the hopes that were pinned on them,” while Europe is “slowly bleeding.” Back in March, Orban said that he felt he couldn’t count on the US-led military bloc when it comes to real action concerning the country’s security, saying “anyone who thinks NATO will protect us is wrong.”

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Long overview.

Hiding Hunter’s Laptop (Hanson)

The definitive book on Cold War era information warfare from our Communist foes is Dezinformatsia: Active Measures in Soviet Strategy. In that book, disinformation is defined as “false, incomplete, or misleading information that is passed, fed, or confirmed to a targeted individual, group, or country.” The American public was subjected to a campaign right out of the Soviet playbook designed to obfuscate the Biden family corruption. It was concocted and deployed by a loosely connected conspiracy of the media, current and former government officials, the Biden campaign, and the social media tech companies. As soon as the story broke October 19, 2020 virtually every major and subsidiary media outlet reported on it with negative sentiment using one of two major themes:

First they argued that it was stolen. The immediate response was to deny the provenance of the laptop which was that Hunter Biden had abandoned it at a repair shop. They began questioning that story and throwing out the completely unfounded speculation that it may be stolen. This smear hit directly at John Paul Mac Isaac, the owner of the repair shop. He provided the contents of the laptop first to law enforcement and when they took no action, to Rudy Giuliani who eventually gave it to the New York Post. The bulk of the media accounts discussing the story in the next 24 hours included a reference to the “stolen” theme.

The second argument offered was that the laptop was not verified. This was the most defensible part of the smoke screen. Most of the media outlets did not have the hard drive so they could say they had not verified it themselves. However, the New York Post showed numerous items in their reporting that would lead any reasonable person to understand the laptop most likely belonged to Hunter Biden. During the taping of an interview with President Trump soon after the story broke, Lesley Stahl of “60 Minutes” ran with this narrative. Stahl denied that the Delaware computer suspected of belonging to Hunter Biden’s was even a story at all after claiming it has been “investigated and discredited.”

“It can’t be verified,” Stahl said of the laptop. “It can’t be verified.” “What can’t be verified?” Trump said. “The laptop!” It had been investigated, but unlike Stahl’s false claim to the contrary the laptop was not discredited. All of the investigations and verification measures showed the same thing: This was Hunter’s laptop, the information was his and it was devastating. One of the truly amazing things is the longevity of the media’s willingness to continue to ignore and suppress this story. It was not until March of 2022 that the New York Times and Washington Post both admitted the long-known fact that Hunter’s laptop was Hunter’s laptop.

Their admissions were not because of some ethical epiphany. They were merely part of a new aspect of the disinformation campaign about the likely charges coming from the ongoing investigation into Biden family corruption. They are based on the disinformation tactic popularized by John Ehrlichman, an aide to President Richard Nixon during Watergate. It’s called the modified limited hangout. In other words, mixing partial admissions with additional misinformation in order to confuse people.

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1000 times. The fact checks look like pretzels.

Yes, They Claimed The Vaccines Would Prevent Transmission (Chung)

No, you’re not crazy. Yes, they claimed the vaccines would prevent transmission. One of the most bizarre lies being told this week in response to Pfizer executive Janine Small’s testimony to EU Parliament is that, actually, the Covid vaccines were never supposed to stop the spread of the virus. Asked by Dutch MEP Rob Roos whether the company had tested its vaccine on “stopping the transmission of the virus” before it rolled out globally, Ms Small said “no” because “we had to really move at the speed of science to really understand what is taking place in the market”. “And from that point of view we had to do everything at risk,” she said. In a viral Twitter video which has now been viewed more than 12 million times, Mr Roos described the response as “scandalous”, arguing “millions of people worldwide felt compelled to get vaccinated because of the myth that ‘you do it for others’”.

Mr Roos said the admission removed the entire basis for vaccine mandates and passports which “led to massive institutional discrimination as people lost access to essential parts of society”. “I find this to be shocking, even criminal,” he said. Of course, fact checkers were not happy. This is not the bombshell it is being presented as, they argue, because it was public knowledge that the primary outcome measured in Pfizer’s clinical trials was reducing risk of disease, but not transmission. Moreover, as the Therapeutic Goods Administration stressed, “transmission effects” are “not an approved indication of any Covid-19 vaccine” currently available in Australia. In Australia, politicians and health officials held millions of people hostage for months, lecturing and threatening them to get vaccinated to regain their “freedoms”.


The vaccines were the “way out” of the pandemic, they were not to just to protect ourselves but to “protect others”, they would “stop the spread”, and not getting vaccinated was “selfish”. Vaccine passports, the “vaccinated economy”, were necessary so people who “did the right thing” would feel “safe” knowing they weren’t “mixing” with the unvaccinated, who were a “risk to the community”. By late 2021 and early 2022, as Omicron became dominant and it was clear vaccinated people were still catching and spreading the virus, the messaging changed. “Stopping the spread? What are you talking about? It’s about reducing hospitalisation and death. We have always been at war with hospitalisation and death.”

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Malone takes a turn away from vaccines.

Twitter is a Weapon, not a Business (Robert Malone)

The research and consulting firm “Edify” has recently disclosed results from a client-driven research project designed to analyze the relationships between the law firm of Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati (WSGR), Twitter, Biden White House, Obama White House, James Baker, Alexander Macgillivray, Vijaya Gadde, and Anthony Fauci’s daughter, Alison Fauci, who is an engineer at Twitter. The first two of these analyses have been published here and here, and at least one more is anticipated in the near future. The findings clearly document the deep web of relationships tying together WSGR, Twitter, the censorship of President Trump, President Barack Obama, President Joe Biden and the Office of Science and Technology Policy and Google. All of these run through Alexander Macgillivray. Macgillivray currently serves the Biden White House OSTP (Office of Science and Technology Policy) as the Principal Deputy U.S. CTO (Chief Technology Officer).

What Edify documents is the web of relationships which have guided the censorship practices of the US Government-Technology/Social media alliance. As I read through the first of the two analyses, titled “EDIFY: CRITICAL NEXUS: TWITTER, WSGR, MACGILLIVRAY & WHITE HOUSE” (September 15, 2022), my interest was piqued by the documentation of the deep connections between Twitter, Biden, Obama, and the central role of Twitter as a tool for information and psychological warfare. Precisely the hot button issue that I discussed on the Joe Rogan Experience when I used those three words “Mass Formation Psychosis,” which triggered such a visceral reaction from the Silicon Valley technology giants, the Trusted News Initiative, and Peter Breggin.

Based on relationship mapping, Edify draws the following conclusions: “Twitter is the central node and the keystone to understanding. Twitter’s inherent value to the elites, political class and federal apparatus writ large is found in its ability to engage in perception management, which is a technical term more commonly referred to as “psyops” or “psychological warfare”. Twitter engages in perception management in its capacity to establish and manipulate reality by means of actively determining and shaping the content on its platform. Twitter consumers can receive filtered content or are prevented from receiving, seeing or having the ability to publish content altogether.

The de facto censorship occurs primarily along the lines of determining and enforcing community standards, guidelines and rules for user engagement. The evidence is clear that the decisions here appear to fall along clearly identifiable political lines resembling two-tier justice. Content determination, algorithmic manipulation and politically motivated censorship of off-reservation messaging and political opposition are all evidenced examples of how Twitter engages in perception management or appears to do so. Two evidenced domains of Twitter’s engagement in perception management include censoring content relative to COVID-19 and the Hunter Biden Laptop story.” [..] The quote above is just the beginning of the analytical conclusions, which include this gem:

“Alison Fauci is a Twitter software engineer who by title, would possess the technical capabilities and access to function as outlined in the testimony. Beyond Alison Fauci’s functionality as a conduit or intermediary for Dr. Anthony Fauci and his principals at the NIH/NIAID and up, Alison Fauci is by title technically positioned to potentially extract private Twitter user data on designated people including political opposition. Any such extracted data could be fed back upstream to the Obama, Biden cartel et al. It’s also further evidence of a distinct pattern of nepotism threading through all of these matters where spouses and children play critical roles determined by their placement into the broader construct. Alison Fauci was positioned to be a possible conduit of information in an intermediary fashion relative to the Anthony Fauci cohort and its preferences for Twitter’s censorship policies for reliable COVID content damaging to the COVID construct of enterprise fraud and that official narrative.”

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HEART

 

 

Cater snake

 

 


The Alpine Ibex’s preferred habitat is the rocky region along the snow line above alpine forests, where it occupies steep, rough terrain at elevations of 1,800 to 3,300 metres

 

 

Magician

 

 


A tiger’s tongue is so coarse, it can lick flesh to the bone. Photo: Tony Zerna

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Oct 132022
 
 October 13, 2022  Posted by at 8:10 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  60 Responses »


Paul Gauguin Sunken lane 1884

 

Putin ‘Totally Miscalculated’ Russia’s Ability To Occupy Ukraine – Biden (G.)
Some of Us Don’t Think the Russian Invasion Was “Aggression” (Mike Whitney)
NATO Planned A Pre-emptive Strike On Russia (Milacic)
Europe: Lack Of Russian Oil Could Spark ‘Worst Energy Crisis In Decades’ (ZH)
Energy Crisis In Europe Will Last For Years – Hungary (RT)
Orbán: With Merkel, We Wouldn’t Have A War (EURActiv)
Putin Says Russia Ready To Send Natural Gas To Europe Via Nord Stream 2 (OP)
Leak Found In Key Russian Oil Pipeline To Germany – Polish Operator (RT)
Russia Names Chief Suspect In Crimea Bridge Attack (RT)
Putin Ponders EU’s Energy Future (RT)
American Gas ‘Inferior’ To Russia’s – Putin (RT)
1962: Cool Heads Prevented A Soviet-US Naval Encounter Sparking A Nuclear War (RT)
Saudi Arabia Unveils Biden Oil Demand (RT)
NATO Eyes 10-Year Plan For Ukraine – Politico (RT)
$1m Offer To Steele Shows FBI Misled Congress On Russia Probe: Kash Patel (JTN)
Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine Effectiveness Turns Negative Within Months (ET)
Europe’s Pension Funds Are Gambling With Food Prices (EUO)
‘They Are Stealing Russia’ (Adam Curtis)

 

 

 

 

Kolakusic

 

 

 

 

Stop the Spread

Tulsi Joe Rogan

 

 

Tell me again: how did we get here?

 

 

 

 

Don’t know where Biden’s handlers get this stuff, but it’s nonsense. Or do they just want to make Putin look as stupid as Biden? Russia knew exactly what was going on nextdoor. On the same page as this article, the Guardian has a link to:

“Would Lukashenko really throw Belarus into a war Russia is losing?”

Says it all. Sad thing is, their readers believe this crap.

Putin ‘Totally Miscalculated’ Russia’s Ability To Occupy Ukraine – Biden (G.)

Joe Biden has said he believes Vladimir Putin is a “rational actor” who badly misjudged his prospects of occupying Ukraine, but does not believe he would resort to using a tactical nuclear weapon. The US president told CNN on Tuesday that he believed his Russian counterpart had underestimated the ferocity of Ukrainian defiance in the face of invasion. “I think … he thought he was going to be welcomed with open arms, that this was the home of Mother Russia in Kyiv, and that where he was going to be welcomed, and I think he just totally miscalculated,” Biden said. “I think he is a rational actor who has miscalculated significantly.” When asked by interviewer Jake Tapper how realistic he believed it would be for Putin to use a tactical nuclear weapon, Biden responded: “Well, I don’t think he will.”


Biden’s comments came as Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, accused Russia of launching a “second wave of terrorist attacks” in the wake of the blast that engulfed Crimea’s Kerch bridge. Zelenskiy said in a video address that 20 of 28 missiles launched by Russia on Tuesday were shot down, as well as “most” of the 15 combat drones deployed. In smaller gains in announced by Ukraine’s Operational Command early on Wednesday, the army destroyed Russian equipment and an ammunition depot along Ukraine’s southern line. At least 23 Russian soldiers were killed, it said. Earlier, Zelesnkiy asked G7 leaders for more air defence systems and a monitoring mission on the Belarusian border, as Russia continued to attack key infrastructure in Ukraine with fresh missile strikes.

Biden 2016

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“They’re openly arming, training, funding, and directing Ukrainian troops to prosecute a war aimed at killing Russian soldiers and removing Putin from power.”

Some of Us Don’t Think the Russian Invasion Was “Aggression” (Mike Whitney)

Imagine if the Mexican army started bombarding American ex-pats living in Mexico with heavy artillery-rounds killing thousands and leaving thousands more wounded. What do you think Joe Biden would do? Would he brush it off like a big nothingburger and move on or would he threaten the Mexican government with a military invasion that would obliterate the Mexican Army, level their biggest cities, and send the government running for cover? Which of these two options do you think Biden would choose? There’s no doubt what Biden would do nor is there any question what the 45 presidents who preceded him would do. No US leader would ever stand by and do nothing while thousands of Americans were savagely slaughtered by a foreign government. That just wouldn’t happen. They’d all respond quickly and forcefully.

But if that’s true, then why isn’t the same standard applied to Russia? Isn’t the situation in Ukraine nearly identical? It is nearly identical, only the situation in Ukraine is worse, much worse. And if we stretch our analogy a bit, you’ll see why: Let’s say, the US Intelligence agencies discovered that the Mexican government was not acting alone, but was being directed to kill and maim American ex-pats on orders from the Chinese Communist government in Beijing. Can you imagine that? And the reason the Chinese government wants to kill Americans in Mexico is because they want to lure the US into a long and costly war that will “weaken” the US and pave way for its ultimate splintering into many pieces that China can control and exploit. Does any of this sound familiar? (Check out the Rand Strategy for weakening Russia here)

So, let’s say, the Chinese are actually the driving force behind the war in Mexico. Let’s say, they toppled the Mexican government years earlier and installed their own puppet regime to do their bidding. Then they armed and trained vast numbers of troops to fight the Americans. They supplied these warriors with cutting-edge weapons and technology, logistical support, satellite and communications assistance, tanks, armored vehicles, anti-ship missiles, and state-of-the-art artillery units all of which were provided with one goal in mind; to crush America in a proxy war that was concocted, controlled and micro-managed from the Chinese Capital of Beijing. Is such a scenario possible?

It is possible, in fact, this very same scenario is playing out right now in the Ukraine, only the perpetrator of the hostilities is the United States not China, and the target of this malign strategy is Russia not the US. Surprisingly, the Biden administration isn’t even trying to hide what they’re up-to anymore. They’re openly arming, training, funding, and directing Ukrainian troops to prosecute a war aimed at killing Russian soldiers and removing Putin from power. That’s the objective and everyone knows it.

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“..the Third World War was prevented only thanks to the Russian special operation in Ukraine.”

NATO Planned A Pre-emptive Strike On Russia (Milacic)

One of the largest French maritime exercises in the Mediterranean, POLARIS 21 (Préparation Opérationnelle en Lutte Aéromaritime, Résilience, Innovation et Supériorité), took place from November 18 to December 3, 2021 in the area west of the island of Corsica, between France and Spain. The exercise also included a segment on the Atlantic coast of mainland France. POLARIS 21 was set up entirely in the context of operational preparation on several fronts and had a high combat intensity, which was fully in line with the strategic vision of the Chief of the Armed Forces and the Mercator Acceleration 21 plan of the Chief of Staff of the Admiral of the French navy Pierre Vandier. In addition to naval warfare, the exercise also included the participation of many combat aircraft and surface-to-air defense.

[..] journalists came into possession of data related to the exercise POLARIS 2021. The data speak clearly about the advance preparation of the NATO to enter into an armed conflict with the Russian Federation in the event of Russia’s intervention in Ukraine. According to the legend of the maneuvers, it was determined that in response to the alleged Russian intervention, the forces of the NATO coalition would form and send an aircraft carrier strike group led by the Charles de Gaulle aircraft carrier to the combat area in order to “stop the invasion and preserve the sovereignty of Ukraine.” The context and scenario of the “exercise“ (the consonance of the names of countries, settlements, the names of political figures, the specifics of maneuvers, etc.) became for the Russian Federation a signal of the real preparation of NATO to the start of hostilities against Russia, as it happened similarly to the operation of the United Defender alliance grouping of forces before the intervention in Libya (the exercises Baltops-2010 and Frisian Flag-2010), when, after the maneuvers at the sea ranges, a full-scale operation followed to overthrow of the legitimate government of Muammar Gaddafi.


POLARIS 2021 was also a demonstration of NATO support to Kyiv in the event of an armed conflict with Russia and was supposed to push Kyiv to start hostilities with the Russian Federation, after which the intervention of the NATO was supposed. In principle, NATO was looking for an excuse to attack Russia, with the factor of surprise, so that Russia would not be ready for an adequate response. In this situation, the preventive start of the Special Military Operation of the RF Armed Forces in Ukraine became the only possible response to the inevitable aggression of the Kyiv regime and the NATO. There is no doubt that thanks to the Russian special operation in Ukraine and the fact that Russia launched a preventive strike, it was NATO that was surprised but also scared by the Russian determination to defend its interests. It is precisely this fact that is responsible for why there was not and will not be conflict between Russia and NATO, that is, the Third World War was prevented only thanks to the Russian special operation in Ukraine.

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“A European ban on most crude imports from Russia will come into effect in December..”

Europe: Lack Of Russian Oil Could Spark ‘Worst Energy Crisis In Decades’ (ZH)

A European ban on most crude imports from Russia will come into effect in December. For EU leaders, the next task at hand has been finding new sources of crude oil ahead of what could be a very dark and cold winter. The move by EU countries to endlessly sanction Russia for President Vladimir Putin’s war with Ukraine by halting crude oil imports later this year is an attempt to “make the Kremlin pay” for the invasion, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen recently said. Though it’s only backfired as the Kremlin’s war chest has swelled by tens of billions of dollars as energy prices hyperinflate and new buyers are found in Asia. EU leaders have stepped up efforts to transition from Russian energy to other energy-rich countries, though they might find it challenging to increase energy imports due to limited spare capacity worldwide.

Monica Malik, the chief economist at the Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, told the audience at an energy security panel hosted by the Institute of International Finance in Washington, DC, on Monday that the Gulf states, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates, won’t be able to increase production to replace Russian oil in Europe. After all, the world is moving into a much tighter oil market for the remainder of the year after OPEC+ cuts. This could unintentionally spur a supercycle in pricing as brent crude inches closer to $100 a barrel. So where will Europe source crude this winter if spare capacity worldwide is limited? Head of European Oil for Morgan Stanley Martijn Rats wrote in a recent note:

“The oil market is where it is because this question is so hard to answer. If we knew, we could all breathe a little easier.” Without spare capacity — EU leaders will find it challenging to source crude around the world because production cannot be quickly ramped up. Helima Croft, managing director at RBC Capital Markets LLC, warned, “I think we are facing the worst energy crisis in decades.”= Croft fears a populist backlash in Europe as sanctions against Russia has sparked a cost-of-living crisis. This could force some EU governments to focus on affordability. She said the probability of the US making deals with Venezuela or Iran to offset the energy crunch is unlikely. One top EU diplomat admitted: “Our prosperity has been based on cheap energy coming from Russia.”

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“..the sanctions “didn’t fulfill the hopes that were pinned on them,” while Europe is “slowly bleeding.”

Energy Crisis In Europe Will Last For Years – Hungary (RT)

The ongoing energy crisis in Europe is set to be a long one and will extend to 2023 and 2024, and possibly beyond, warned Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto, following a meeting of EU energy ministers on Wednesday. “We are now seeing the first global energy crisis in history, and it is long-term,” proclaimed Szijjarto, explaining that the crisis is being fueled by underlying “structural geopolitical reasons tied to security,” which require “long-term solutions.” The diplomat noted that “international institutions which still retain a small amount of common sense” also warn that this is a long-term crisis and a problem which will exist “not just this winter, but the next one and the one after that as well.”

Szijjarto also mentioned that Hungary’s own energy supply has been secured, after the country reached an agreement with Russia and has been receiving gas through the TurkStream pipeline without interruption. “That is why the Hungarian government pays special attention to ensuring the physical and legal functioning of the Turkish Stream, as this is a fundamental interest of our national security,” he said, noting that Hungarian gas storage facilities are filled at 48.2% of annual consumption, while the average fill level for Europe is currently at 26.9%.

Hungary receives around 80% of its gas from Russia’s gas giant Gazprom. While Russia has cut off gas supplies to a number of countries, Hungary signed a deal with Moscow in late August for additional deliveries on top of already-agreed volumes. Hungarian President Viktor Orban had previously accused the EU leadership of sparking the ongoing energy crisis by introducing “counterproductive” sanctions on Russian energy over Moscow’s ongoing military campaign in Ukraine. Budapest has repeatedly called for “the failed policy of Brussels” to be changed, noting that the sanctions “didn’t fulfill the hopes that were pinned on them,” while Europe is “slowly bleeding.”

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Probably true.

Orbán: With Merkel, We Wouldn’t Have A War (EURActiv)

Russia’s war on Ukraine would not have happened if former German Chancellor Angela Merkel was still in office, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said during a visit to Berlin, where he met with both Merkel and current Chancellor Olaf Scholz.When Merkel announced that she would retire from politics, Orbán published a letter on his website saying the then-German Chancellor “understood us” and “we understood her”. Germany is Hungary’s main trading partner, accounting for approximately 27% of trade volume, while some 3,000 German companies are currently present in Hungary.

Merkel’s reaction to the 2014 crisis triggered by Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea was “a master stroke,” Orbán told a public event in Berlin on Tuesday (11 October), explaining that a war could have broken out at the time but was avoided due to the German chancellor’s actions.“Thank you, Angela!” he added. Asked whether this means the current war would have been prevented if the conservative ex-chancellor was still in office, Orbán said: “for certain.” Merkel, meanwhile, has been criticised since the onset of the Ukraine war for failing to reduce energy dependency from Russia and maintaining close economic ties with Moscow during her 16-year rule.

Nord Stream 2 pipeline, for many, Europe’s Achilles’ Heel, was a thorny issue during Merkel’s mandate. The pipeline, which aimed to carry 55 billion cubic meters of Russian gas to Germany, was backed by Merkel but is now frozen due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Back then, eastern European countries opposed the project, but Hungary did not voice any significant opposition.

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It will take a rebellion against US and NATO. But all these countries are members of NATO.

Putin Says Russia Ready To Send Natural Gas To Europe Via Nord Stream 2 (OP)

Russia is ready to supply gas to Europe on the one undamaged line on the Nord Stream 2 pipeline if the EU wants to start the route, Russian President Vladimir Putin said at an energy forum in Russia on Wednesday. Russia is ready to deliver additional volumes of natural gas to Europe this winter, but the ball is in the EU’s court to decide, Putin said, as carried by the Russian news agency Interfax. Putin also said that repairing the Nord Stream 1 and 2 lines that were found to have been sabotaged would only make sense if they will be used later, Interfax quoted the Russian president as saying. Nord Stream 2 was never put into operation after Germany axed the certification process following the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Russia, for its part, shut down Nord Stream 1 indefinitely in early September, claiming an inability to repair gas turbines because of the Western sanctions. Before the Nord Stream 1 and 2 leaks were detected at the end of September, Putin said that Russia had nothing to do with Europe’s energy crisis and that if Europe wanted more gas, it just had to “push the button” on Nord Stream 2 and “everything will get going,” that is, lift the sanctions on Nord Stream 2. A few days later, Stephan Weil, Minister-President of the northwestern German state of Lower Saxony, said that Germany could never rely on Russia for energy supply again, and the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project would never go ahead.

Another few days later, the suspected sabotage on Nord Stream 1 and 2 lines in Swedish and Danish territorial waters in the Baltic Sea put Europe on heightened alert over the security of its energy infrastructure. Norway posted soldiers from its Home Guard to protect energy infrastructure as Western Europe’s largest oil and gas producer, and its Scandinavian neighbors are increasing security following the suspected sabotage of the Nord Stream pipelines.

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This pipeline is from the 1960s. More than 50 years older than Nordstream. Not the same quality.

Leak Found In Key Russian Oil Pipeline To Germany – Polish Operator (RT)

Polish operator PERN has said it’s discovered a leak on the Druzhba pipeline, which supplies Russian oil to Germany. The rupture was detected late on Tuesday by automated systems on one of the two strings of the pipeline, some 70 kilometers from the town of Plock in central Poland, the company said in a statement on Wednesday. The damaged half was switched off immediately, and the other string continues to operate as normal, the company said. “At this point, the causes of the incident are not known,” PERN said, adding that its staff and firefighters were deployed to the site to assess the situation and secure the area.


The Druzhba pipeline is one of the largest oil transport networks in the world, spanning some 4,000km and bringing oil from Russia to Ukraine, Belarus, Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Austria and Germany. The leak on the Druzhba pipeline follows explosions that were detected in late September on the Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines in the Baltic Sea, connecting Russia to the EU via Germany. The incident is widely considered to be the result of sabotage.

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“The list of people in custody includes five Russians..”

Russia Names Chief Suspect In Crimea Bridge Attack (RT)

Russia’s domestic security service, the FSB, has announced arrests over the attack on the Crimean Bridge. It has also revealed details of the alleged Ukrainian terrorist plot, including its mastermind.The agency accused the Ukrainian Main Intelligence Directorate (GUR) of the Ukrainian Defense Ministry of being behind the explosion, which damaged the strategic structure last Saturday. It claimed that Commander, Kirill Budanov, was personally responsible for the operation. Russia has identified 12 individuals as suspected accomplices in the plot and has arrested eight of them, the FSB said. The list of people in custody includes five Russians and three foreigners, who have citizenship of Ukraine and Armenia.


The FSB claimed that the deadly cargo came from the Ukrainian city of Odessa. The explosives were disguised as rolls with plastic construction film, which were shipped on pallets and weighed 22,770 kg, the statement said.Investigators said the shipment left Odessa in August and went through Ruse, Bulgaria, to Poti in Georgia. It was then moved to Armenia, a country which has a free trade agreement and a relaxed customs regime with Russia. It was then imported into Russia via Georgia on October 4, according to the timeline. The transportation paperwork identified a non-existent firm in Crimea as the final recipient, according to the Russian agency. But the set of documents was only the latest of several used to disguise the movement of the cargo, it added.

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Germany will have to stand up for itself.

Putin Ponders EU’s Energy Future (RT)

Russia could move the transit volumes lost through the damage to the Nord Stream pipelines to the Black Sea region, by establishing a ‘gas hub’ in Türkiye for EU supplies, President Vladimir Putin has said. He pointed out it was possible to repair the damaged pipelines but that Russia and the EU should decide their fate.“We could … thus make the main routes for the supply of our fuel, our natural gas to Europe through Türkiye, creating the largest gas hub for Europe in Türkiye,” Putin said, during an address on Wednesday to the Moscow Energy Week conference. “That is, of course, if our partners are interested in this. And economic feasibility also matters, of course.”

According to the president, Russian gas could still be supplied to the EU via one remaining part of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline that remains intact, but the ball was now in the EU’s court on whether it wanted this to happen. Russia could open the gas taps on that line if the bloc wanted it to, Putin stressed. The Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines abruptly lost pressure last month, following a series of powerful underwater explosions off the Danish island of Bornholm. The incident caused massive gas leaks, with large volumes entering the sea. The ruptures are widely considered to be the result of sabotage by an unknown party. The routes were designed to carry Russian natural gas directly to Germany, bypassing transit states, including Ukraine and Poland.

Moscow has called the incident a terrorist attack and said the US, a long-time critic of Germany’s reliance on Russian energy, stood to benefit most from the disabling of the routes, both politically and economically. Washington has denied any involvement. However, Secretary of State Antony Blinken hailed the incident as a “tremendous opportunity” for Europe “to once and for all remove the dependence on Russian energy.” Neither pipeline was operational at the time of the breach. Berlin refused to certify the newer Nord Stream 2 after its completion last year, and Russia halted supplies via the older Nord Stream 1 in late August, citing sanctions-related maintenance problems.

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Inferior not in quality, but in competitiveness.

“..the US “sells its liquefied natural gas at four times the price that it sets for its own industrialists..”

American Gas ‘Inferior’ To Russia’s – Putin (RT)

The US has ample opportunity to supply its shale gas to the EU now that Russia’s Nord Stream 1 pipeline has been made inoperable, but this gas is “inferior” to Russian natural gas supplies, President Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday. “It is quite clear who the beneficiaries [of the Nord Stream incident] are… the US, of course, which can now supply energy resources at high prices… It is now possible for them to force large liquefied natural gas volumes on European countries, which are clearly inferior in competitiveness to Russian pipeline gas,” the President said at the Russian Energy Week forum. He explained that the prices on US-produced LNG are much higher than those on Russian pipeline gas, “everyone was well aware of this before, and now is even more so,” and added that there are additional risks regarding US deliveries.

“The risks lie in the fact that all this supply is very unstable and can ‘float away’ to other regions,” Putin said, adding that US tankers carrying LNG to Europe may divert from Europe if sellers will be offered a higher price elsewhere. Putin’s words echo the statements made by French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire earlier this week. Speaking at the National Assembly, he said that it is unacceptable that the US “sells its liquefied natural gas at four times the price that it sets for its own industrialists” and called for a “more balanced economic relationship on the energy issue” to be established between Brussels and Washington.

Russia used to cover over 40% of the EU’s gas needs prior to the start of the military operation in Ukraine and ensuing sanctions. Supplies dropped dramatically this year, especially after one of the major routes for gas deliveries was severed due to the under-investigation explosions that damaged Russia’s Nord Stream pipelines last month. The US, meanwhile, ramped up its supply of LNG to Europe over the past months, up to a point where it now accounts for nearly half of the bloc’s LNG imports, nearly twice the share recorded in 2021.

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Do such heads still exist in the west?

1962: Cool Heads Prevented A Soviet-US Naval Encounter Sparking A Nuclear War (RT)

On October 1, 1962, four Soviet submarines, each equipped with nuclear-armed torpedoes, departed Kola Bay in the Barents Sea en route to Cuba. The mini-fleet was intended to secretly bolster a vast Soviet military presence on and around the island and protect the construction of defensive missile sites requested by Havana in the wake of the CIA’s disastrous Bay of Pigs operation, in which Washington-backed rebel forces attempted to storm Havana and overthrow the popular Communist government of Fidel Castro. According to the private account of Vasily Arkhipov, the vice-admiral of submarine B-59, now published for the first time in commemoration of the event by the US National Security Archive, the weather during the transit was “generally conducive to keeping secrecy” over the long journey – “stormy weather, low clouds, low visibility, snow squalls, rain.”

Along the way, they detected “an elevated level of activity of anti-submarine aircraft radiolocation stations working in a short-interval regime,” but the covert convoy went unnoticed until October 18, when Soviet intelligence “intercepted a message from a French radio station informing some correspondents that Soviet submarines [had] entered the Atlantic and were now traveling to the American shores.” “How they discovered the submarine is hard to say…However, one can say with high confidence that the submarine was not discovered with aircraft radar,” Arkhipov claims. “[Soviet] commanders…were ordered to be on full alert and to continue to navigate in secret,” as a result, Arkipov recalled.


On October 24, the Soviet submarines arrived at their “designated areas” near Cuba, the very same day that Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev told Washington’s high representative in Moscow that if US ships began searching Soviet merchant ships on the high seas, it would be considered piracy and he would give orders to Soviet submarines to destroy the harassing American vessels. It was a hugely tense situation and one that set the scene for what happened three days later, when a B-59 surfaced in order to recharge its batteries. According to the private account of Arkhipov, upon emerging it discovered: “An aircraft carrier, nine destroyers, four Neptune airplanes and three Trekkers, encircled by three concentric circles of coast guard forces…overflights by planes just 20-30 meters above the submarine’s conning tower, use of powerful searchlights, fire from automatic cannons (over 300 shells), dropping depth charges, cutting in front of the 5 submarine by destroyers at a dangerously [small] distance, targeting guns at the submarine, yelling from loudspeakers to stop engines, etc.”

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Output cut only after the midterms.

Saudi Arabia Unveils Biden Oil Demand (RT)

Saudi Arabia has said that OPEC’s decision to cut oil production was based solely on economic considerations, not politics, and that the organization resisted pressure from the United States to put off the move for several weeks.The Saudi Foreign Ministry issued a statement on Wednesday pushing back on allegations that the oil cut was intended to benefit Russia, insisting it is not “taking sides in international conflicts” or making “politically motivated” decisions.“These outcomes are based purely on economic considerations that take into account maintaining balance of supply and demand in the oil markets, as well as aim to limit volatility that does not serve the interests of consumers and producers, as has been always the case within OPEC +,” the ministry said, adding that the cut was approved “unanimously by all member states” of the organization.

While Washington suggested “postponing the OPEC+ decision for a month,” the Foreign Ministry said US officials were informed such a delay “would have had negative economic consequences.” The Wall Street Journal was first to report on the request from the United States, noting that Riyadh considered the idea a “political gambit by the [Joe] Biden administration to avoid bad news ahead of the US midterm elections.”However, a National Security Council (NSC) spokesperson, Adrienne Watson, denied that characterization, telling the outlet that US officials “questioned a Saudi analysis that the price of oil was about to plunge and urged them to wait and see how the market reacted.”

“It’s categorically false to connect this to US elections,” Watson said. “It’s about the impact of this shortsighted decision to the global economy.” President Biden responded harshly to the production cut, suggesting the move would help Moscow reap higher prices for its energy exports as Western nations seek to choke off the Russian economy in retaliation for the war in Ukraine. Biden also vowed “consequences” for Saudi Arabia, and though he did not elaborate what that could mean, top NSC spokesman John Kirby later told reporters that the White House would review the US-Saudi relationship to ensure “it is serving our national security interests.”


Saudi Arabia confirms Biden attempted to coerce them to postpone oil cuts until after the midterms

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Treating Ukraine as de facto NATO member. Not wise.

NATO Eyes 10-Year Plan For Ukraine – Politico (RT)

The NATO alliance will soon launch a scheme to rebuild Ukraine’s defense industry over the next decade, hoping to phase out Soviet-era weapons in favor of Western gear as Washington and its allies pledge new rounds of military aid to Kiev. Officials from NATO and Ukraine are set to meet next week to discuss a “long-term commitment” to revitalize Kiev’s military-industrial complex following months of fighting with Russia, Politico reported on Wednesday, citing a senior NATO official. “We will be looking at defense planning requirements to get Ukraine fully interoperable with NATO,” the unnamed official said. “It’s about shifting away from Soviet equipment … to NATO-compatible Western equipment.” Though the NATO staffer offered few details about the rebuilding effort, they said it would focus on Ukraine’s longer-term needs and likely involve several international partners.

The initiative will be separate from another NATO project discussed by acquisition officials earlier this month, which also seeks to bolster Ukraine’s defense sector while replenishing Western stockpiles after heavy arms shipments to Kiev. Earlier on Wednesday, the so-called ‘Ukraine Defense Contact Group’ met to discuss continued military support, with Ukrainian Defense Minister Alexey Reznikov stating that air defense systems are his country’s “top priority.” US Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Mark Milley said Washington and its allies would aim to provide such weapons, calling on members of the contact group to “chip in and help [Ukraine] rebuild and sustain an integrated air and missile defense system, specifically old systems.”

Dutch Defense Minister Kajsa Ollongren, meanwhile, vowed to send additional anti-aircraft missiles during Wednesday’s meeting, saying the “only result [Russia] is achieving with [continued attacks on Ukraine] is that we are going to deliver even more.” Those pledges came soon after Germany delivered the first of four IRIS-T air defense systems to Ukraine, while France, the United States and Britain have each announced new weapons transfers of their own, including French truck-mounted howitzers, US-made NASAMS air defense systems and AMRAAM air-to-air missiles from the UK.

Maersheimer Cohen

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‘Nobody is going to catch us. We are going to break a constitutional republic’s 250-year tradition because we don’t like the guy in the White House, and we’re going to manufacture a crime on it.'”

$1m Offer To Steele Shows FBI Misled Congress On Russia Probe: Kash Patel (JTN)

Following the bombshell revelation from the trial of Igor Danchenko that the FBI offered Christopher Steele $1 million to corroborate his dossier, former House Intelligence Committee investigator Kash Patel said this proves the bureau knew it hadn’t been able to verify the Trump-Russia collusion narrative and misled Congress. Danchenko, the primary source for the Steele dossier, is charged with five counts of lying to the FBI. As the prosecution opened its case against Danchenko Tuesday, Special Counsel John Durham questioned his first witness, FBI supervisory intelligence analyst Brian Auten. Auten testified that in early October 2016, the FBI offered Steele “up to $1 million” to provide corroborating evidence for his dossier, but the former British spy didn’t provide any such information to the bureau.

As a result, Steele wasn’t given the money because he was unable to “prove the allegations.” An application the FBI submitted to a FISA court on Oct. 21, 2016 for a warrant to initiate electronic surveillance of former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page included uncorroborated information from the dossier. Auten testified that before the FBI received the dossier, it didn’t have enough evidence to obtain a FISA warrant. Auten also said the FBI contacted other intelligence agencies regarding the specific allegations in the dossier, but none were able to corroborate them. Durham asked Auten, “On October 21, 2016 did you have any information to corroborate that information?” “No,” Auten replied. Patel was asked about the purported reward offer on the “Just the News, No Noise” TV show Tuesday.

The House Intelligence panel chaired by then-Rep. Devin Nunes sent 17 congressional subpoenas “for information specifically related to payments and confidential human sources,” he said, “were denied this information, and we learn it four years after our investigation.” “That means somebody obstructed a congressional investigation with congressional subpoenas,” said Patel, a former national security prosecutor. This exposes “the depths that [the FBI] would go to to falsely corroborate the Steele dossier, which … shows they didn’t have it verified, which we’ve said the whole time,” Patel added. “And more importantly,” he continued, “they were willing to spend a million taxpayer dollars on shoveling political hot garbage through the federal court system just to surveil a political target that would have been totally baseless — it was baseless then.”

Referring to a group of senior FBI leaders during the James Comey era as “government gangsters,” Patel said “this bombshell” shows that they “were so arrogant, that they said, ‘Nobody is going to catch us. We are going to break a constitutional republic’s 250-year tradition because we don’t like the guy in the White House, and we’re going to manufacture a crime on it.'” Retired FBI supervisory special agent Bassem Youssef, one of the bureau’s most famous whistleblowers, said Tuesday’s revelation at the trial was unlike anything he ever saw in his three-decade FBI career.”Never in my entire career have I heard of such an offer to pay a source to corroborate their own information,” Youssef told Just the News. “The FBI queries other sources in order to validate the original source of information. It is unheard of that the FBI would offer to pay Steele $1 million to corroborate his own information.

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Just say no.

Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine Effectiveness Turns Negative Within Months (ET)

The effectiveness of Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine against infection turns negative over time, according to a new study that was funded by the vaccine maker. The effectiveness of three doses—a primary series and a booster—against infection remained above 50 percent after 150 days against BA.1, a subvariant of the Omicron virus variant, researchers estimated. However, against more recent strains, including the currently dominant BA.5, the effectiveness turned negative. Against BA.2, BA.4, and BA.5, the effectiveness went negative after 150 days; against BA.1.12.1, the effectiveness turned negative after 91 days. Negative effectiveness means that a vaccinated person is more likely to contract COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus, than an unvaccinated person.

Researchers with Moderna and Kaiser Permanente, which carried out the study, also found that people who received three Moderna doses were more likely to become infected when compared to people who received just two doses. Researchers said that they attempted to reduce potential bias by taking actions such as adjusting for comorbidities, but that some confounding may remain. They said that some of the negative effectiveness estimates “could be due to differential risk behaviors among vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals when protection from antibodies becomes minimal.” Hung Fu Tseng, a researcher with Kaiser Permanente Southern California and the study’s corresponding author, declined to provide evidence for the statement or otherwise comment on the negative effectiveness estimates.

A slew of other studies and analyses have found that the effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines turns negative over time, including a study that estimated the protection for children aged 5 to 11 turned negative after 18 or 20 weeks, and an analysis of data from a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) testing program that estimated the shielding turned negative around six months. Swedish researchers in September concluded that effectiveness turned negative within several months.

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“..these funds are funded by workers and yet they are “engaging in actions which destroy the living standards of those workers..”

Europe’s Pension Funds Are Gambling With Food Prices (EUO)

Some of Europe’s largest pension funds are investing billions of euros in volatile commodity markets, risking the hard-earned income of millions of workers while fuelling a global hunger crisis caused in part by such investments, a new investigation has found. The findings also raise questions over whether the European Union’s continued drive to deregulate its financial markets will worsen the situation in the future. The rules governing the bloc’s capital markets are currently under review. Soaring prices of key commodities such as food and energy have triggered a cost of living crisis around the world, including in Europe. The United Nations said the increases may have also pushed an estimated 71 million people in developing nations into poverty.

Lighthouse Reports, a European non-profit newsroom, analysed the accounts of more than 70 major pension funds in Spain, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, Germany, the UK, Finland and Denmark. While some funds explicitly forbid speculating in commodities, especially in food, 15 are currently investing in them, with the three biggest buyers the Netherlands, UK and Denmark held a total of €37.6bn between them at the end of 2021. According to Jayati Ghosh, professor of economics at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, the findings show that pension funds are amongst the financial institutions that have aggravated the problem of investor speculation driving food prices. This is “particularly egregious” because these funds are funded by workers and yet they are “engaging in actions which destroy the living standards of those workers”, she said.

Most funds do not disaggregate between hard commodities, such as gold and oil, and soft commodities, such as agriculture and livestock, but experts say the ultimate impact — rising commodity prices — is likely to be the same. “Whether it is in food or energy, both are equivalently terrible from the point of view of workers and developing countries because a fuel price increase translates into prices of all other prices going up,” says Ghosh. In addition, commodity markets are risky to invest in, said Ann Pettifor, one of the few economists who predicted the 2007-2008 global financial crisis. “I don’t want my pension fund to go near something as volatile as a commodity market, basically, especially the ones in energy and in food,” she said.

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When Adam Curtis makes a film (series), you watch. When Adam Curtis writes, you read.

“..on how hyper-capitalism wrecked a nation – and why Liz Truss must take heed..”

In the 1990’s, Russia male life expectancy fell by 15-20 years. That’s what Putin inhereted.

‘They Are Stealing Russia’ (Adam Curtis)

The central mystery of our time is why, at a moment when the whole political and social system is out of control and in total chaos, no one seems able to imagine any alternative. The economic system is not delivering the good life it once promised, but is instead creating chaos and hardship for millions. Meanwhile, those in charge of the system are profiting massively from that chaos, feeding off the uncertainty. And the political class are in thrall to an economic theory that has become absurd and corrupted. I’ve just made TraumaZone, a series of films about another time when that was happening. It was in Russia in the 1990s after communism collapsed. Those in charge began an experiment to create an extreme form of capitalism. I made it because I don’t think we in the west understand what the Russians went through: a cataclysm that tore apart the foundations of society.

The films are made using a unique source of material: thousands of hours of raw footage recorded by BBC crews in Russia during that time, much of it never seen before. What makes it so extraordinary is that it records the experiences of Russians at every level of society as their world fell apart: from inside the Kremlin to the frozen mining cities of the Arctic circle, from life in the tiny villages of the vast steppes to the strange wars fought in the mountains and forests of the Caucasus. As I watched the footage I decided that I shouldn’t use my voice or paste music over it. The material was so strong that I didn’t want to intrude pointlessly, but rather let viewers simply experience what was happening, because it is was out of this – the anger, violence, desperation and overwhelming corruption – that Vladimir Putin emerged.

But as I made the films, the growing chaos here in Britain made me see parallels. There are of course vast differences between our society and the Russia of 30 years ago, but the more you find out about the extreme economic experiment there, and what is happening here now with the present government, the more you see that they both share very similar roots that have nothing to do with either capitalism or communism. The clue lies in the man who imposed the “shock therapy” experiment on Russia. Called Yegor Gaidar, he was at the heart of the communist establishment. His grandfather was the most famous writer of children’s books in the Soviet Union, and Gaidar had married the daughter of one of the Strugatsky brothers, science-fiction writers who wrote the novel the film Stalker was based on.

This economist who would become acting prime minister set out to create a perfect capitalist system in Russia. He had to do it fast, he said, to stop communism from ever returning. Overnight, he removed all controls over prices, while the government gave up on any attempt to manage the system. The aim, said Gaidar, was to create a new zone of perfect freedom in which, despite initial pain, the system would find its own natural equilibrium. But if you look closer, you will see that his plan had little to do with freedom. It was in fact an odd, machine-like vision of the world driven by pseudoscientific ideas.

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PressTV

 

 

US soldier

 

 

Hologram

 

 

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Oct 082022
 
 October 8, 2022  Posted by at 8:32 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  67 Responses »


Marc Chagall The watering trough 1925

 

Putin and Zelensky To Attend G20 – Indonesia (RT)
Merkel: Lasting Peace In Europe Only Possible With Russia’s Input (RT)
Russia Abandons The Dream Of A Greater Europe (RT)
US Media’s Intellectual No-Fly-Zone on Nord Stream (FAIR)
Lavrov Explains Why Russia Sees Ukraine As A Threat (RT)
EU Again Urged To Open Wallet For Kiev (RT)
Belgium Fails To Support New Round Of Sanctions Against Russia (RT)
Orban Urges Changes To EU Sanctions Policy (RT)
Joe Biden Is Not A Real President (Scarry)
OPEC Humiliates President Biden On A Global Stage (QTR)
Luxembourg Raises Red Flag Over Energy Price Caps (RT)
Citi: Financial Crisis May Surprise EU (RT)
November Surprise? (Jim Kunstler)
Washington Post Lying About Kremlin ‘Turmoil’ – Moscow (RT)
When Anti-Government Speech Becomes Sedition (Whitehead)
CDC: Record Number Of Children Hospitalized With Weakened Immune Systems (ZH)

 

 

This morning: Explosions on the Kerch bridge (Crimean bridge), which connects Crimea with Russia.

 

 

 

 

Macgregor

 

 

 

 

Ed Dowd

 

 

 

 

 

 

“We are deciding which hotels to put them up in – one for Mr. Putin and one for Mr. Zelensky..”

“..his press secretary, Sergey Nikiforov, in a comment to Ukrainian media, denied the information that Zelensky had decided to visit the G20 summit..”

Putin and Zelensky To Attend G20 – Indonesia (RT)

Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Ukrainian counterpart, Vladimir Zelensky, will both travel to Bali in November for the G20 summit, an Indonesian diplomat has told UAE’s The National newspaper. If true, the summit will be the first event attended by both leaders since Russia’s military operation in Ukraine began. “Both have agreed [to attend],”Indonesia’s ambassador to the United Arab Emirates, Husain Bagis, told The National on Friday. He conceded that “the situation isn’t easy because of the Ukraine-Russia war,” and said that his government is already planning how to manage the arrival of the two leaders. “We are deciding which hotels to put them up in – one for Mr. Putin and one for Mr. Zelensky,” he said.

The Kremlin confirmed in June that Putin would attend the summit, although spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Friday that the format of Putin’s participation “is still not defined.” Kiev stated in August that Zelensky “believes that he should be on the territory of Ukraine,” but would “think about”making the trip if Putin were to attend in person. Today his press secretary, Sergey Nikiforov, in a comment to Ukrainian media, denied the information that Zelensky had decided to visit the G20 summit. US President Joe Biden and a number of other Western leaders urged Indonesian President Joko Widodo not to invite Putin to the summit in Bali.

However, Widodo resisted the pressure campaign and invited the Russian leader as planned. With Widodo having met both Zelensky and Putin earlier this summer in a bid to “invite the two leaders to open dialogue and stop the war,” Bagis told The National that Indonesia aims “to make the G20 a platform for peace, not conflict.” Biden also appears to have softened his exclusionary stance toward Putin, telling reporters on Thursday that it “remains to be seen” whether he would meet the Russian president on the sidelines of the summit. The State Department quickly stepped in to say that in the view of the entire government, “it cannot be business as usual when it comes to Russia.” Although Ukraine is not one of the world’s 20 largest economies, Zelensky was invited to Bali as a guest.

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Sustainable peace = Green peace?!

Wonder if Merkel is involved in secret talks with Russia.

Merkel: Lasting Peace In Europe Only Possible With Russia’s Input (RT)

Sustainable peace in Europe may only be achieved if Russia is part of it, former German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Thursday. Speaking during the 77th anniversary of the German newspaper ‘Suddeutsche Zeitung,’ Merkel explained that while the West has been adamant in its support for Ukraine as the nation remains locked in conflict with Russia, it should also keep its mind open about what might seem as “unthinkable” now – Moscow’s future role in Europe’s affairs. She stressed that “a future European security architecture within international law will meet the requirements” only if it involves Russia. “As long as we haven’t achieved that, the Cold War is not really over either,” she added.

Merkel described February 24 – the day Russia launched its military campaign in Ukraine – as a “turning point,” adding that statements made by various parties to the conflict should be taken “seriously and not to be classified as a bluff from the start.” She was apparently referring to recent comments made by Russian President Vladimir Putin, who signaled that Moscow would use “all means to defend Russia and our people” if its territorial integrity was threatened. He also warned the West that those who use nuclear blackmail against Russia “should know that the wind rose can turn around.”

Merkel earlier urged the Western world to take Putin and his words seriously, arguing that such an approach is “by no means a sign of weakness,” but rather “a sign of political wisdom.” She also noted that former German chancellor Helmut Kohl, who before his death, was widely regarded as her political mentor, would have kept an open mind about “how relations to and with Russia could one day be redeveloped” after hostilities in Ukraine end. Such a stance, however, did not sit well with Ukrainian officials. Last week, Andrey Melnik, Kiev’s outgoing ambassador to Berlin, called Merkel’s attitude towards Russia and its role in European security “almost perverse.”

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“A Greater Europe didn’t happen; a Greater Asia that includes Russia is de facto emerging.”

Russia Abandons The Dream Of A Greater Europe (RT)

Re-uniting the divided people of Russia and gathering the lands where they live is essentially the core element of the new Russian idea that Putin is offering to his compatriots. The immediate task of course is to integrate the new territories that have just joined Russia following the referendums. This requires a major effort in many areas and at various levels. It is anything but easy. Russian forces, which for months have been advancing on Ukrainian territory, suddenly find themselves in a situation where they have to abandon some areas which are now legally Russian land, populated by Russian citizens who just voted in the referendums and now face severe reprisals at the hands of the counter-attacking Ukrainians.

Next comes the need to rebuild the cities and villages ravaged in the war, repair damaged infrastructure, restart the economy, provide communal services, and re-organize public administration, health services, and education. Of paramount importance is socializing the millions of residents of the four regions who were automatically granted Russian citizenship, in the Russian national environment. Moscow has some experience of that from 2014 when Crimea and Sevastopol joined Russia, but doing this in a wartime situation is more challenging. A lot will depend, of course, on how the Russian forces cope on the frontline that passes very close to Donetsk and Kherson, and which still leaves the city of Zaporozhiye in Ukraine’s rear.

Even if the Ukrainian counter-offensive runs out of steam and the Russians resume their advance, none of these tasks can be accomplished quickly. This part of the new Russian national idea will keep the nation busy for a long time. Putin’s concept, however, doesn’t stop there. It is not so much about restoring the Soviet Union: in Putin’s words, such a restoration is not Moscow’s objective. The Baltics, the South Caucasus and Central Asia are probably not envisaged as part of the new construct. However, as Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov hinted on the State Duma floor, in future other Ukrainian regions might be given the chance to follow Kherson and Zaporozhiye. To Putin, Greater Russia is a distinct civilization which opposes not only America’s hegemonic policies, but also the West’s projection of its values as universal.

This is an about-face not only from Gorbachev’s musings about a common European home, but also from Putin’s own travails in trying to forge a Greater Europe from Lisbon to Vladivostok, and his efforts to find a way for Russia to join NATO. A Greater Europe didn’t happen; a Greater Asia that includes Russia is de facto emerging. As to a Greater Russia, this requires more than a leader’s imagination. The Soviet Union, as the living generations remember it, was very much the product of the Great Patriotic War. The hybrid war with the West, of which Ukraine is only a small part, will doubtless reshape Russia. The question is, will it also transform it to fit the vision of a powerful economy and a vibrant society, faithful to its declared values – the substance, rather than the form of a Greater Russia.

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“A 2019 Pentagon-funded study from the RAND Corporation on how best to exploit “Russia’s economic, political and military vulnerabilities and anxieties” included a recommendation to “Reduce [Russian] Natural Gas Exports and Hinder Pipeline Expansions.”

US Media’s Intellectual No-Fly-Zone on Nord Stream (FAIR)

Any serious coverage of the Nord Stream attack should acknowledge that opposition to the pipeline has been a centerpiece of the US grand strategy in Europe. The long-term goal has been to keep Russia isolated and disjointed from Europe, and to keep the countries of Europe tied to US markets. Ever since German and Russian energy companies signed a deal to begin development on Nord Stream 2, the entire machinery of Washington has been working overtime to scuttle it. A 2019 Pentagon-funded study from the RAND Corporation on how best to exploit “Russia’s economic, political and military vulnerabilities and anxieties” included a recommendation to “Reduce [Russian] Natural Gas Exports and Hinder Pipeline Expansions.”

The study noted that a “first step would involve stopping Nord Stream 2,” and that natural gas “from the United States and Australia could provide a substitute.” This RAND study also prophetically recommended “providing more US military equipment and advice” to Ukraine in order to “lead Russia to increase its direct involvement in the conflict and the price it pays for it,” even though it acknowledged that “Russia might respond by mounting a new offensive and seizing more Ukrainian territory.” The Obama administration opposed the pipeline. As part of the major sanctions package against Russia in 2017, the Trump administration began sanctioning any company doing work on the pipeline. The move generated outrage in Germany, where many saw it as an attempt to meddle with European markets. In 2019, the US implemented more sanctions on the project.

Upon coming into office, President Joe Biden made opposition to the pipeline one of his administration’s top priorities. During his confirmation hearings in 2021, Secretary of State Anthony Blinken told Congress he was “determined to do whatever I can to prevent” Nord Stream 2 from being completed. Months later, the State Department reiterated that “any entity involved in the Nord Stream 2 pipeline risks US sanctions and should immediately abandon work on the pipeline.” In July 2021, the sanctions were relaxed only after contentious negotiations with the German government. The New York Times (7/21/21) reported that the administration and Germany still had “profound disagreements” about the project.

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“We all remember how [Zelensky] declared in January Ukraine’s intention to acquire nuclear weapons. Apparently, this idea has long been stuck in his mind..”

Lavrov Explains Why Russia Sees Ukraine As A Threat (RT)

A call by Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky for NATO members to deploy nuclear weapons against Russia is a reminder of why Moscow launched military action against his country, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has said. “Yesterday, Zelensky called on his Western masters to deliver a preemptive nuclear strike on Russia,” Moscow’s top diplomat stated during a media conference on Wednesday. In doing so, the Ukrainian leader “showed to the entire world the latest proof of the threats that come from the Kiev regime.” Lavrov said Russia’s special military operation had been launched to neutralize those threats. He dismissed as “laughable” an attempt to downplay Zelensky’s words made by his press secretary, Sergey Nikoforov. “We all remember how [Zelensky] declared in January Ukraine’s intention to acquire nuclear weapons. Apparently, this idea has long been stuck in his mind,” the Russian minister said.


On Thursday, Zelensky told the Australian Lowy Institute that NATO must carry out preemptive strikes against Russia so that it “knows what to expect” if it uses its nuclear arsenal. He claimed that such action would “eliminate the possibility of Russia using nuclear weapons,” before recalling how he urged other nations to preemptively punish Russia before it launched its military action against his country. “I once again appeal to the international community, as it was before February 24: Preemptive strikes so that [the Russians] know what will happen to them if they use it, and not the other way around,” he said. His spokesman then claimed that people interpreting Zelensky’s words as a call for a preemptive nuclear strike were wrong, and that Ukraine would never use such rhetoric.

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Cold and hunger and billions for Azov. A winning model.

EU Again Urged To Open Wallet For Kiev (RT)

Josep Borrell, the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs, will urge member states to set aside more funds to cover enhanced military assistance for Ukraine. The top diplomat shared his plan with reporters at an informal EU summit in Prague on Friday. “I will ask the leaders to support the proposal for a new tranche for European Peace Facility to continue providing military support to Ukraine, also to the training mission,” Borrell said, as quoted by Reuters. Earlier this week Borrell expressed hope that at the next Foreign Affairs Council gathering on October 17, the EU will be able to “formally launch” its training mission for Ukrainian armed forces. Writing in his blog, the diplomat also claimed that the EU would “reinforce” its strategy of supporting Ukraine – “militarily, financially and politically.”

The European Peace Facility (EPF) that Borell referred to, is a mechanism created last year to enhance the EU’s ability to act as a global security provider. The EPF reimburses governments for military equipment supplied to Kiev, “including items designed to deliver lethal force for defensive purposes.” The latest round of funding for Ukraine under the EPF, worth €500 million, was agreed by the European Council in July. With this package, the total EU contribution for the country within this framework amounts to €2.5 billion. The EPF has a ceiling of about €6 billion and is supposed to support not only Ukraine but also other countries. As EU nations face an energy and cost-of-living crisis, exacerbated by anti-Russia sanctions and a reduction in Russian energy supplies, Borrell earlier urged people in the bloc to combat “the temptation to abandon Ukraine.”

Responding earlier this week to the EU’s plan of creating a training mission for Kiev’s armed forces, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said that such a move would only “fix the EU in the status of a participant in the conflict.” In April, she accused the bloc of turning into “NATO’s economic relations department.” This followed Borrell’s tweet that “This war (in Ukraine) must be won on the battlefield.” Moscow has consistently warned Western countries against providing military support to Kiev. It argues that such assistance would only prolong the conflict and will lead to unnecessary casualties. Ukraine, in turn, has repeatedly claimed that the EU is too slow in its weapons supplies and that it doesn’t always provide what Kiev had requested.

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I found this strange. Macron wanted a new club, the European Political Community (EPC), which is EU plus some others?! Why? Betcha it’s so Ukraine can be part of some club too.

Belgium Fails To Support New Round Of Sanctions Against Russia (RT)

The Belgian government decided against endorsing a new round of EU anti-Russia trade restrictions, the local press reported on Thursday, citing remarks made by Prime Minister Alexander De Croo. Speaking on the sidelines of the European Political Community (EPC) summit in Prague, Czech Republic, the head of the Belgian government explained that “as the economic cost of sanctions becomes higher, it becomes difficult to show solidarity” with Ukraine. “The sanctions have worked very well so far,” the prime minister said, “but the further we go, the more we talk about sanctions that hurt our own economy more than Russia’s.” His country therefore declined to support the eighth package of sanctions when EU member states voted on it this week.

Belgium didn’t vote against it either, because “we do not want to break European solidarity,” De Croo was quoted as saying. A vote against the proposal any EU member state would have blocked the package from being approved. Belgium was reportedly the only nation to abstain. Earlier this week, Belgian MP Andre Flahaut, who represents the province of Walloon Brabant, expressed concerns about the impact of the upcoming sanctions on his constituents. Two factories owned by the Russian metals giant NLMK, which are located in the Belgian province, may have to shut down, the lawmaker warned. The EU ultimately allowed a transition period of two years to switch from semi-finished steel products originating in Russia to alternative supplies.

There were also concerns in Belgium that the EU would try to restrict trade in Russian diamonds, potentially impacting the jewelry businesses of Antwerp. Some news outlets reported that the country blocked the proposed inclusion of such sanctions in the package. When asked about Russian gemstones, Prime Minister De Croo said his government would not have opposed a ban, if it were necessary, but the European Commission decided against it because imports from Russia had fallen significantly without any formal restrictions. The EPC is a new political club proposed earlier this year by French President Emmanuel Macron. The forum is supposed to bring together EU member states and nations that aspire to become part of the economic bloc, plus its traditional allies like the UK and Norway. The meeting of EPC leaders in Prague is the first of its kind.

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Orban could soon walk out. They refuse to give him his money anyway. Why stay?

Orban Urges Changes To EU Sanctions Policy (RT)

Sanctions imposed by the EU on Russia over the conflict in Ukraine have failed, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban said on Thursday, urging Brussels to change its policy. “The sanctions didn’t fulfill the hopes that were pinned on them, the war hasn’t ended,” Orban wrote on Facebook. “Europe is slowly bleeding and Russia is making money in the meantime,” he pointed out. The Hungarian leader said that it was obvious to him that “the failed policy of Brussels must be changed.” The statement was made on the same day that the EU announced an eighth round of sanctions on Russia. The new curbs include an oil price cap, trade restrictions amounting to 7 billion euros and individual sanctions against 30 people and seven entities. The move comes after the official inclusion of Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics as well as Kherson and Zaporozhye Regions into Russia [..]


Orban has frequently criticized the EU’s sanctions on Russia, calling them counterproductive. Hungary, which is heavily dependent on Russian energy, has maintained a relatively neutral stance during the conflict in Ukraine, condemning the use of force by Moscow, but refusing to supply weapons to Kiev. Brussels expected that the unprecedented restrictions would cripple Russia’s economy and prevent it from funding its military operation. But Moscow was able to redirect its oil and gas to Asian markets, while also profiting from growing energy prices. The policy has also largely backfired for the EU, causing a spike in inflation, and putting Europe into an energy crisis. The situation deteriorated even further in late September when the Nord Stream pipelines were sabotaged.

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“Biden Threatening Nuclear Armageddon After Six Years of Media Freakout Over Trump Tweets”

Joe Biden Is Not A Real President (Scarry)

Did anyone else burst into a bout of uncontrollable, psychotic laughter upon reading the report that President Biden just told a room full of Democrat donors that the risk of nuclear “armageddon” has arrived? I can’t be the only one. Here are some headlines from the not-too-distant past that immediately came to mind: • We must Trump-proof the nuclear codes before 20243 NBC News, March 12, 2022 • Gen. Milley feared Trump might launch nuclear attack, made secret calls to China, new book says USA Today, Sept. 14, 2021 • Trump is leading us into nuclear war, says Daniel Ellsberg (and he should know, he used to plan them) Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, Feb. 1, 2018 • Donald Trump s Nuclear-War Threat The New Yorker, Aug. 9, 2017 • Clinton Says Trump Could Lead US Into Nuclear War Roll Call, June 2, 2016.

So, wait a second. You mean we just spent the last six years with all of Washington and the national media swearing to voters that Trump had us on the brink of nuclear annihilation, only for it to be Biden, their choice for president, to get us right up on the cliff’s edge? If that doesn’t have you pulling tufts of hair out of your scalp until it bleeds, check your pulse. This can’t be real. Biden has to be fake. This must be a computer simulation. For four years under Trump, gas was cheap, the stock market was booming, and a trip to the grocery store didn’t require customers to take out a second mortgage.

Now under Biden, OPEC is gratuitously choking the energy supply, basic necessities are scarce, and a major war has American taxpayers spending more than $67 billion (and counting) to a country that’s 5,000 miles away. Oh, and now we have to worry about a nuclear confrontation with a global superpower! sIf it were a movie script, not a single producer would find it believable. The writer would never work again. But this is real? We elected a president, in earnest, who is this incompetent and terrible? It’s nuclear war he’s warning of! This is the absolute worst-case scenario. The severity can’t be overstated. There aren’t enough mean Trump tweets in the world to excuse the state of things under this “president.” I refuse to believe it. Biden isn’t a real president.

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“..they 1) are not our friends, 2) do not care what we want, 3) do not take us seriously and 4) are not here to help us and/or Biden get re-elected by lowering prices..”

OPEC Humiliates President Biden On A Global Stage (QTR)

[..] yesterday OPEC humiliated President Biden on a global stage by cutting oil production after he specifically lobbied them not to. There’s no “nice” way of putting it – they straight-up snubbed the U.S. and have now, in my opinion, made it officially clear that they 1) are not our friends, 2) do not care what we want, 3) do not take us seriously and 4) are not here to help us and/or Biden get re-elected by lowering prices. To use Biden’s parlance, “Let me tell you something, Jack – we’re not in bed with the Saudis anymore. They are more allied with China and Russia than they have ever been, at arguably the most crucial moment in recent history for our global economy.”

As I pointed out last night on my podcast, there was nothing quite like the “fist bump heard round the world” a couple months ago when President Biden – who spends his time here domestically fighting for “equality” and human rights – decided to embrace the Saudis, and their track record of disapproving of gay rights, murdering journalists and multiple other human rights violations – instead of simply ramping up domestic oil production here in the U.S. Biden probably went into the meeting he had with MBS months ago thinking we had some type of leverage, like we have had decades ago. The sad reality is that we simply don’t anymore: the Saudis have the oil, they have gold, and now they have allies just as big and powerful as the U.S. when combined. And those allies provide financial and military support at a crucial juncture for geopolitics.

Meanwhile, our President remains tone deaf and while his supporters remain immune to what can only be described as blatantly obvious double standards. With the left hand, Biden was vilifying Exxon and Chevron here in the U.S., basically encouraging them to not bring more supply online, whilst blaming “gas station owners” and other people who don’t set the price of refined fuels. With the right hand, he was fist bumping a man who publicly disapproves of gay rights and ordered the murder of a critical journalist, in order to try and get him to unleash more oil on the global stage. And instead of him taking us seriously, he did the exact opposite of what Biden wanted yesterday – cut oil production, raising prices – and humiliated Biden on the global stage.

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“Serbian Interior Minister Aleksandar Vulin has described the eighth package of anti-Russia penalties as the “first EU sanctions package” against Serbia.”

Luxembourg Raises Red Flag Over Energy Price Caps (RT)

The European Union may be left with no energy supplies after introducing gas price caps, Luxembourg’s Prime Minister Xavier Bettel said as he arrived at the bloc’s summit in Prague on Friday. “Implementing a price cap is not the only thing,” Bettel said. “Because, after, maybe we can’t get energy. So then, maybe we have a price cap but no energy.” EU leaders are expected to discuss how to deal with gas prices to curb soaring energy bills during their informal summit in the Czech capital. The talks will include a proposal on a gas price cap. “We have to know we’re not the only customers in the world,” he added. “So, we have to be very careful about decisions that we take that sound good on paper but where consequences can be problematic.”


The issue has been hotly contested for weeks, with Germany, Denmark, and the Netherlands in opposition to any form of cap due to concerns regarding security of supply. On Thursday, Brussels announced the eighth package of restrictions on Russia, which includes a price cap and “further restrictions” on the maritime transportation of Russian crude oil and petroleum products to third countries. The latest batch of penalties has been blasted by several EU nations, including Hungary and Serbia. Earlier, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban said that anti-Russia sanctions had failed, adding that the bloc was “slowly bleeding” due to the drastic steps. Meanwhile, Serbian Interior Minister Aleksandar Vulin has described the eighth package of anti-Russia penalties as the “first EU sanctions package” against Serbia.

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“The euro area is at risk of a financial meltdown on the same scale as the crisis it suffered a decade ago..”

They should be so lucky.

Citi: Financial Crisis May Surprise EU (RT)

The euro area is at risk of a financial meltdown on the same scale as the crisis it suffered a decade ago, Citi analysts have told CNBC. They cited Germany’s massive energy relief plan as the major threat to the bloc’s stability, the media outlet reports on Friday. According to the report, Wall Street bank analysts have raised concerns about the violent bond market moves and the European governments’ plans to borrow vast sums of money. They said that German Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s relief package, worth €200 billion ($195 billion) and aimed at tackling soaring energy prices, “may soften the coming recession but also poses risks.” Those risks relate to the question of how the package will be financed and what that could do to inflation, to Germany’s sovereign bond yields, to the ECB’s benchmark rate, and to the borrowing plans of other euro nations that may do the same.

“The risk is that others may follow that example,” Christian Schulz, deputy chief European economist at Citi, told CNBC, citing the UK’s recent bond market meltdown after unfunded tax cuts by the government. Schulz explained that Germany could “afford” any debt financing thanks to its low debt-to-GDP ratio and lower external funding needs, but the package could open the door for less fiscally prudent countries to want to borrow large amounts and issue new debt. That could potentially lead to trouble like that seen in Britain.

Citi analysts forecast that German debt financing could force tighter ECB policy, which could then also send yields surging in the euro area. “The risk is that this same dynamic [as seen in Britain] evolves on the continent as well now,”Schulz warned. Meanwhile, data by Saxo Bank show that an ECB stress indicator for the Eurozone’s financial system – which looks at tensions in bond, equity and money markets – has risen from below 0.1 at the start of the year to almost 0.5 so far. During the Eurozone debt crisis in 2009-2010, the index exceeded 0.6.


German producer prices. Past 2 years: up 60%. Past 40 years before that: up 60%.

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“His staff must be marinated in evidence of the RussiaGate misdeeds — reams of which have been independently documented in the public record..”

November Surprise? (Jim Kunstler)

Adults understand that politics is a crooked business, but through the whole of US history until now filters existed in the public arena that allowed for enough sorting out of truth from untruth to enable the formation of a reality-based consensus — which, in turn, allowed daily life to operate coherently. The Party of Chaos has thrown the kill-switch on that crucial function by corrupting the news business and subverting the new social media. The result is a public culture of pervasive and immersive lying, and a stupendous institutional failure of the courts to correct any of that behavior. Case-in-point: the John Durham Special Counsel Investigation on the origin of the RussiaGate fraud. It now apparently terminates in the prosecution of the tiniest minnow (Igor Danchenko) in that vast inland sea of corruption.

Some of the figures who carried out the perfidious seditions of RussiaGate are still employed in the Department of Justice and the FBI, and to this day are active in the continued cover-up of the crimes committed to overthrow President Trump, notably: Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco, Associate Attorney General Vanita Gupta, DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz, FBI Director Christopher Wray, and others. Mr. Durham is supposedly among the highest officers of the federal courts charged with enforcing a very particular region of criminality.

His staff must be marinated in evidence of the RussiaGate misdeeds — reams of which have been independently documented in the public record, ranging from (just for example) the nefarious activities of figures like Nellie Ohr, wife of DOJ higher-up Bruce Ohr, working as go-between with Christopher Steele and the FBI, to the spectacular failures of Judge James Boasberg and his FISA court, not to mention the well-known machinations of Peter Strzok, Lisa Page, Andrew McCabe, Rod Rosenstein, Dana Boente, James Baker, Andrew Weissmann, Jeannie Rhee, Aaron Zebley, Brandon Van Grack, Robert Mueller, and other top officials who worked sedulously against the public interest. All these remain apparently off-the-hook for their sketchy activities.

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“Peskov told the Post that disagreement between Putin and his aides is “part of the usual working process.”

Washington Post Lying About Kremlin ‘Turmoil’ – Moscow (RT)

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Friday that a Washington Post report alleging “turmoil” and confrontation in Russian President Vladimir Putin’s inner circle is “absolutely not true.” The report in question was attributed to anonymous US spies. “A member of Vladimir Putin’s inner circle has voiced disagreement directly to the Russian president” over the conflict in Ukraine, the report stated, alleging that “the criticism marks the clearest indication yet of turmoil within Russia’s leadership.” No source was given for this report, which was attributed to “information obtained by US intelligence.” Peskov told the Post that disagreement between Putin and his aides is “part of the usual working process.”

“There are working arguments: about the economy, about the conduct of the military operation. There are arguments about the education system. This is part of the normal working process, and it is not a sign of any split,” he said, adding that the information supposedly obtained by American intelligence is “absolutely not true.” American officials have previously boasted about waging an “info war”against Russia by leaking false intelligence reports to the media, NBC News reported in April. Intelligence officials, for example, admitted to fabricating a warning that Russia was preparing to use chemical weapons in Ukraine in March, leaking the story to the Washington Post despite it being based on “low confidence” intelligence.

A report claiming that Putin was “being misled by his own advisers” was also reportedly made up or exaggerated by US spies. “There’s no way you can prove or disprove that stuff,” a retired intelligence operative told NBC. The Post’s latest report was also received with doubt by the US’ European allies. According to the newspaper, “senior security officials in Europe said they were not aware that anyone had dared to challenge Putin directly over the course of events in Ukraine,” and said that they hadn’t seen the supposed US intelligence report that the article was based on.

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Terrorists.

When Anti-Government Speech Becomes Sedition (Whitehead)

Anti-government speech has become a four-letter word. In more and more cases, the government is declaring war on what should be protected political speech whenever it challenges the government’s power, reveals the government’s corruption, exposes the government’s lies, and encourages the citizenry to push back against the government’s many injustices. Indeed, there is a long and growing list of the kinds of speech that the government considers dangerous enough to red flag and subject to censorship, surveillance, investigation and prosecution: hate speech, conspiratorial speech, treasonous speech, threatening speech, inflammatory speech, radical speech, anti-government speech, extremist speech, etc.

Things are about to get even dicier for those who believe in fully exercising their right to political expression. Indeed, the government’s seditious conspiracy charges against Stewart Rhodes, the founder of Oath Keepers, and several of his associates for their alleged involvement in the January 6 Capitol riots puts the entire concept of anti-government political expression on trial. [..] In recent years, the government has used the phrase “domestic terrorist” interchangeably with “anti-government,” “extremist” and “terrorist” to describe anyone who might fall somewhere on a very broad spectrum of viewpoints that could be considered “dangerous.” The ramifications are so far-reaching as to render almost every American with an opinion about the government or who knows someone with an opinion about the government an extremist in word, deed, thought or by association.

You see, the government doesn’t care if you or someone you know has a legitimate grievance. It doesn’t care if your criticisms are well-founded. And it certainly doesn’t care if you have a First Amendment right to speak truth to power. What the government cares about is whether what you’re thinking or speaking or sharing or consuming as information has the potential to challenge its stranglehold on power. Why else would the FBI, CIA, NSA and other government agencies be investing in corporate surveillance technologies that can mine constitutionally protected speech on social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram? Why else would the Biden Administration be likening those who share “false or misleading narratives and conspiracy theories, and other forms of mis- dis- and mal-information” to terrorists?

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3 weeks after the New England Journal of medicine said the vaccines destroy your immune system, the stupid circus just goes on.

CDC: Record Number Of Children Hospitalized With Weakened Immune Systems (ZH)

Official data suggests that more children and young adults than ever have been hospitalized with colds and respiratory issues, according to the Daily Mail, which notes that “experts have repeatedly warned lockdowns and measures used to contain Covid like face masks also suppressed the spread of germs which are crucial for building a strong immune system in children.” According to a retrospective report by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), levels of common cold viruses hit their highest level among non-adults in August 2021 – when levels had been much lower in previous years during the same month. According to the data which sampled nearly 700 children, nearly 55% tested positive for RSV in August 2021. Of that, 450 were moved to emergency departments where nearly 35% had RSV – which is comparable to the winter months when over 30% of patients regularly have the virus, according to the report.


“The CDC samples random pediatric hospitals across the US and makes national estimates to gauge how prevalent viruses are. There were nearly 700 children in hospital sick with a respiratory virus across the seven wards studied in August last year, of which just over half had tested positive for respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) – which is normally benign. This was the highest levels ever recorded in summer, and came off the back of a year and a half of brutal pandemic restrictions forcing many to stay indoors. The record all-time high is in December, when 60 per cent of children on wards with respiratory illnesses were infected with RSV.” -Daily Mail

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Dance
https://twitter.com/i/status/1578392775367819264

 

 

 

 

Watters

 

 

Anthony Bourdain RIP

 

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Sep 272022
 


Marcel Duchamp About young sister 1911

 

This Is the Way the World Ends (Jim Kunstler)
Ukrainian Territories To Be Absorbed Into Russia By Week’s End: Lawmaker (ZH)
All the Young Dudes, Carry the -Russian- News (Escobar)
Zelensky Reveals US Pays Ukraine $1.5 Billion Per Month (RT)
Putin Considering Talks With Kiev On New Conditions – Turkish FM (RT)
German Energy Apocalypse Update V (Eugyp)
Germany Suspects ‘Targeted Attack’ On Russian Gas Pipelines (RT)
The US Is Winning Its War On Europe’s Industries And People (MoA)
West Should Treat Us With Respect – Putin (RT)
Poland Slams ‘Scandalous’ Von der Leyen Warning (RT)
Russia And The US Still Have Time To Prevent A Nuclear War (Trenin)
Orban Says EU Sanctions on Russia Have ‘Backfired’ (R.)
Moscow Tells US To ‘Back Off’ With ‘Aggressive’ Course (RT)
Moscow Grants Russian Citizenship To Edward Snowden (AP)
Roger Waters Pens Open Letter To Putin (RT)
Trouble About The Corona Vaccine Deal: Why Is Von Der Leyen Stonewalling? (MP)
Just 1.5% Of Eligible Americans Have Gotten Updated COVID Booster (ZH)

 

 

 

 

Meloni identity

 

 

 

 

Net Zero

 

 

This one is a bit older.

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Madame von der Leyen’s fellow Germans have already been sent to their room without so much as a kartoffelklop, plus no heat or hot showers for you, Hansel and Gretel.”

This Is the Way the World Ends (Jim Kunstler)

The bond market has gone south, and that spells The End for the great game of financialization. The bond market is Moby Dick compared to the little blowfish that is the stock market. The global money system is based on bonds, which are… what? That’s right: loans… promises to pay you X at some future moment. So, what happens when a daisy-chain of promises-to-pay gets broken? Or, perhaps more precisely, when all those promises lose their last shred of plausible reality? Why, the money that these broken promises are denominated in loses its essential cred. Trick question: how much is worthless money worth? (Answer: not enough to pay for a can of Schrödinger’s cat food.) Which is where all this folderol leaves a lot of ordinary people all over Western Civ (and beyond!) trying to scratch up enough increasingly worthless money to feed the family and pay the landlord. Many will never understand what happened. But they will not be any less pissed off at the result.

This is the way the world ends for the hapless phantom known as “Joe Biden” the child-sniffing ectoplasm that haunts the White House these days of late empire. Somehow, the bamboozled nation has so far passively accepted the pranks and punishments laid on them by the backstage managers behind the Figment-in-Chief. Eight-plus percent inflation? No problemo, right? Eighty-five thousand new IRS agents on-board to drive you batshit while destroying your household and your posterity (ha!)? Half the population of South America flooding across the border? (The vibrancy! You no like?) A hundred dollar fill-up at the gas pump, and no heat for you this winter? (But… Netflix!) Drag queens to amuse and edify your children about the delirious realm of sexual pathology. All that…and how about a Russian hypersonic nuclear missile up your ass if the preceding somehow failed to move you? (Because: Russia, Russia, Russia…!)


Meanwhile, a trend is manifesting in other lands. The people of, first, Sweden and now Italy are voting in “right wing” nationalist governments — the horror — sending their equivalent of our Party of Chaos to the showers. This has irked the President of the European Union, one Ursula von der Leyen, no end. She has threatened to send Italy to its room without supper for the effrontry. Of course, Madame von der Leyen’s fellow Germans have already been sent to their room without so much as a kartoffelklop, plus no heat or hot showers for you, Hansel and Gretel. Embrace the suck.

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No way back.

Ukrainian Territories To Be Absorbed Into Russia By Week’s End: Lawmaker (ZH)

With four occupied regions of Ukraine currently in the midst of a five-day referendum on whether to join the Russian federation, a Kremlin lawmaker told state media over the weekend that the territories are likely to be absorbed by Russia on September 30. “Taking into account the preliminary results of the referendums and Russia’s readiness to acknowledge them, the accession of the territories is likely to take place as early as on September 30,” the unnamed member of Russia’s State Duma said to TASS. Voting is set to conclude Tuesday in Donestk, Luhansk and the Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions, meaning as early as Wednesday or even Thursday announcements of results are likely to trickle out, paving the way for a potential Friday official declaration.


While Russian forces do not yet control the entirety of each of these territories, their annexation would constitute Ukraine losing almost 20% of its geographic territory. Russian President Vladimir Putin might himself make the proclamation following the referendums, which Ukrainian leaders along with Washington have dismissed as a “sham” – saying they won’t be recognized. Russian media reports indicate: The lawmaker said Russian President Vladimir Putin could take part in the procedure on September 30. “I don’t know if he will [participate], but he is likely to do so,” the MP said. Given that on Saturday Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov vowed new territories would be under Russia’s “full protection” – there is more than likely to be a major uptick in the intensity of fighting to follow the referenda results announcement in eastern Ukraine.

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“..after so many years, Moscow is finally fully committed to supporting Donbass all the way to the baby bears coming to Mama for good.”

All the Young Dudes, Carry the -Russian- News (Escobar)

Moscow’s rerouted strategy takes maskirovka – mask, feint, fool the enemy – to another level, actually dropping the mask, plus the velvet gloves. Now it’s all very clear: this is turbo-charged Sun Tzu (“May your plans be dark and impenetrable like the night, and when you move, strike like lightning.”) There will be plenty of strikes like lightning ahead in the Ukrainian battlefield. This is the culmination of a process that started in Samarkand, during the SCO summit last week. According to diplomatic sources, Putin and Xi Jinping had a very serious conversation. Xi asked tough questions – as in you must finish this off – and Putin arguably explained how things would reach the next level.

Yoda Patrushev was on the road to China immediately afterwards – meeting with his Yoda counterpart Yang Jiechi, head of the Foreign Affairs Commission, and the secretary of the Central Political and Legal Committee, Guo Shengkun. Following-up on Samarkand, Patrushev outlined how Moscow will help Beijing militarily when the Empire tries anything funny in the next battlefield: Asia-Pacific. That should happen under the framework of the SCO. Crucially, the Patrushev meetings were requested by the Chinese. So the Russia-China strategic partnership is about to achieve full-fledged cooperation before the going gets tough in the South China Sea. It’s as if Russia-China were on the brink of creating their own CSTO.

And that is happening even as the Chinese leadership continues to express – mostly in private – that war in Russia’s western borderlands is very bad for business (BRI, EAEU, SCO, BRICS+, all of them) and should be wrapped up a.s.a.p. The problem is a swift wrap-up is off the cards. Foreign Minister Lavrov, in New York for the UN General Assembly, has stressed how. “Ukraine has eventually become a totalitarian Nazi sort of state” – unconditionally supported by the collective West. NATOstan has predictably doubled down on its tactics since the non-response response to Russia’s demand for a serious discussion on indivisibility of security, in late 2021: it’s always about shelling Donbass. This could not possibly be tolerated anymore by the Kremlin and Russian public opinion.

Thus the partial mobilization – forcefully proposed by the siloviki and the Security Council for quite a while now, with Kostyukov at GRU, Naryshkin at SVR and Bortnikov at FSB on the forefront. The symbolism is powerful: after so many years, Moscow is finally fully committed to supporting Donbass all the way to the baby bears coming to Mama for good. There are – unconfirmed – rumors in Moscow that the decision was accelerated because GRU has intel on the Americans soon transferring long-range missiles to Kiev capable of striking Russian cities. That’s beyond a red line for the Kremlin – hence Putin’s express mention that every weapon available in Russia’s mighty arsenal will be used to protect the Motherland.

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Lowballing.

Zelensky Reveals US Pays Ukraine $1.5 Billion Per Month (RT)

The Ukrainian government is being heavily supported with American money, with Washington contributing $1.5 billion per month to the budget, Ukraine’s President Vladimir Zelensky has revealed. The sum was mentioned by the Ukrainian leader during an interview with CBS host Margaret Brennan for the ‘Face the Nation’ program, which was aired on Sunday. Currently Kiev runs “a deficit of $5 billion in our budget,” Zelenksy said, adding that “the United States gives us $1.5 billion every month to support our budget to fight” against Russia. Zelensky argued that arming and otherwise helping Ukraine militarily is a “win-win” for the US. He pledged that once Russia is defeated, the Ukrainian people will return to their home country and start paying taxes there, relieving the burden on American taxpayers.

“For the United States, it will be significant savings, but for us, it will be an opportunity to secure our territory and make it safe for our population,” he stated. US President Joe Biden has pledged to help Ukraine “for as long as it takes” to secure a strategic defeat of Russia, which he declared Washington’s ultimate goal in the conflict. Many Americans do not share the president’s view that the situation in Ukraine is crucial. According to the conservative election pollster Rasmussen Reports, it failed to make the top-ten list of issues of concern for likely voters. Earlier this month, the Biden administration asked Congress to authorize some $12 billion in additional aid for Ukraine, including $4.5 billion to support the Kiev government financially beyond September. It asked for $2 billion on top of that, to help Ukraine offset rising energy prices.


The package is expected to be approved on Friday, but some political analysts question whether the cash flows to Ukraine can be sustained after the midterm elections in November. “America can’t afford to provide a blank checkbook to Ukraine when we have inflation, gas prices, a supply chain crisis, all of the above, going on at home,” a GOP lawmaker told Politico, speaking on the condition of anonymity. “That’s what I’m hearing from my voters.” The outlet predicted that if the Republican Party wins the House, Biden will face more resistance to his requests for emergency aid to Ukraine.

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“In the course of negotiations with our president, Putin announced the possibility of returning to negotiations with Kiev, but on new conditions that have appeared,”

Putin Considering Talks With Kiev On New Conditions – Turkish FM (RT)

Russian President Vladimir Putin is considering resuming talks with Ukraine, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Monday. The top diplomat made the remarks during a press conference in Tokyo where he’s attending the funeral of former prime minister Shinzo Abe, who was assassinated in July. According to Cavusoglu, Putin floated the idea during a conversation with his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan at the recent summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) in Samarkand, Uzbekistan. “In the course of negotiations with our president, Putin announced the possibility of returning to negotiations with Kiev, but on new conditions that have appeared,” Cavusoglu was quoted as saying, He didn’t elaborate on the “conditions” specified.

The minister also reiterated Ankara’s desire to stage direct talks between Putin and Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky. “Our president will continue his contacts with Putin and Zelensky. Our aim is to bring the two leaders together to ensure that decisions are made at the level of the leaders,” Cavusoglu said. Top Russian officials have repeatedly said Moscow has been ready to talk with Kiev, pinning the blame for the stalled negotiations on the Ukrainian side. Last week, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said dialogue is “of course needed,” adding that Putin had already explained that “Ukraine left the negotiations several months ago.”


Apart from declaring the goal of defeating Moscow on the battlefield, Ukrainian officials have also reacted angrily to the referendums on joining Russia, currently ongoing in the Donbass republics and Zaporozhye and Kherson Regions in southern Ukraine. On Sunday, Zelensky warned that should Russia complete the vote, it would “make it impossible, in any case, to continue any diplomatic negotiations” with Moscow.

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“Normally” Eugyppius writes on Covid. But he’s in Germany…

German Energy Apocalypse Update V (Eugyp)

Germany has nationalised the gas importer Uniper, to save it from insolvency in the face of the Gazprom gas stoppage. Robert Habeck’s earlier scheme to save Uniper and other importers involved the imposition of a gas surcharge of 2.4 cents per kilowatt hour on all consumers, but the government appears ready to scrap this plan just days before it was set to go into effect. Instead, some politicians are now talking of capping gas prices, though as far as I can tell, nobody has any idea how. As the pressure builds and the first closures begin, Germany is entering an economic recession, and there are everyday renewed cracks in the political edifice.

Minister President of Saxony Michael Kretschmer (CDU) – no fringe political figure – recently remarked that Germany “cannot do without Russian gas” and acknowledged that EU sanctions are to blame for the shortage, but he stopped short of demanding that Nord Stream 2 be opened; instead, he hopes for a return to Russian gas after the Ukraine war has ended. The Greens in government remain committed to taking Germany’s last nuclear power plants offline by the end of the year, hoping that enough French nuclear plants will return to service over the winter to cover any resulting shortages. It is hard to imagine a more farcical approach to nuclear energy.

Meanwhile, the head mayor of Berlin has suggested that two- or three-hour periods of load-shedding may be necessary to keep the electrical grid functional over the winter. Other experts, while downplaying the risk of uncontrolled outages, have raised the possibility load-shedding as well, confirming that these are very real contingency plans and that we’re being prepared for them. The stated concern is invariably that local or regional gas shortages will cause the widespread activation of electrical heaters and overwhelm the grid, though how exactly this could be anticipated far enough in advanced for scheduled outages is unclear to me. Prices have increased vastly across the economy, and estimates are that up to 60 percent of German households are now committing their entire monthly income to cover the rising cost of living.

The depth of the crisis isn’t fully known, as loan defaults and similar economic signals won’t begin in earnest until 2023. And that’s it. There are no plans from the government, beyond doubtful price-tinkering, regulatory schemes and targeted financial assistance. If you look at those news outlets most guilty of Corona hysteria, like the state-funded Tagesschau or the Süddeutsche Zeitung, you find extremely muted reporting on the crisis. Instead, hyperventilation about Ukraine continues to dominate headlines; pieces on the energy apocalypse are either misleading items like this one, hailing a dip in gas prices, or trivial write-ups about whether cities should cancel their Christmas lighting this year.

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Well, the Russians don’t blow up their own pipelines…

Germany Suspects ‘Targeted Attack’ On Russian Gas Pipelines (RT)

While the loss of pressure in three natural gas pipelines between Russia and Germany is still officially being investigated, Berlin is reportedly no longer convinced it was a coincidence, and suspects a “targeted attack” on behalf of either Ukraine or Russia, the newspaper Tagesspiegel reported on Monday evening. Pressure in one of the Nord Stream 2 lines dropped sharply overnight, followed by the same happening to both Nord Stream 1 pipes on Monday afternoon. Denmark announced that a gas leak was spotted off the coast of Bornholm island in the Baltic Sea and closed the area for maritime traffic, but could not confirm if this was what caused the pressure loss.

According to Tagesspiegel, the German government and agencies investigating the incident “can’t imagine a scenario that isn’t a targeted attack,” according to an anonymous source familiar with their assessments. “Everything speaks against a coincidence.” The outlet explained that a deliberate attack on the bottom of the sea has to involve special forces, navy divers or a submarine. Berlin is reportedly examining two possible scenarios. In the first, Ukraine or “Ukraine-affiliated forces”could be behind the attack. The second option is that Russia did it as a “false flag,” to make Ukraine look bad and drive the EU energy prices even higher.


With Nord Stream offline since late August, Russian gas can only be delivered to Germany and central Europe via the older pipelines going through Poland and Ukraine, Tagesspiegel noted. “We are in the process of clarifying the situation here,” a spokeswoman for the federal ministry of economics told the outlet. “We don’t currently know what caused the pressure drop.” Nord Stream 1 was built in 2011. Construction on Nord Stream 2 began in 2018, and took much longer due to political pressure and economic sanctions from the US. NS2 was finished and pressurized by September 2021. However, two days prior to Russia’s military operation in Ukraine, the German government put its certification on indefinite hold, and has categorically refused any suggestion from Moscow – or its own people – to unblock the pipeline.

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“Instead of a real military threat from Russia and China, the problem for American strategists is the absence of such a threat.”

The US Is Winning Its War On Europe’s Industries And People (MoA)

On February 7 Professor of Economics Michael Hudson explained why America’s Real Adversaries Are Its European and Other Allies: “What worries American diplomats is that Germany, other NATO nations and countries along the Belt and Road route understand the gains that can be made by opening up peaceful trade and investment. If there is no Russian or Chinese plan to invade or bomb them, what is the need for NATO? And if there is no inherently adversarial relationship, why do foreign countries need to sacrifice their own trade and financial interests by relying exclusively on U.S. exporters and investors?

These are the concerns that have prompted French President Macron to call forth the ghost of Charles de Gaulle and urge Europe to turn away from what he calls NATO’s “brain-dead” Cold War and break with the pro-U.S. trade arrangements that are imposing rising costs on Europe while denying it potential gains from trade with Eurasia. Even Germany is balking at demands that it freeze by this coming March by going without Russian gas. Instead of a real military threat from Russia and China, the problem for American strategists is the absence of such a threat.” What the U.S. needed was to provoke Russia, and later China, into reacting to U.S. arranged threats in a way that would oblige its ‘allies’ to follow its sanction policies. The rather dimwitted European leadership fell for the trick.


The U.S. arranged for a Ukrainian attack on the rebel held Donbas region. This started on February 17 with intense artillery preparations against Donbas positions as recorded by the OSCE observers at that border. Russia had to react or see the ethnic Russians in those areas getting maimed and killed by Nazi devoting Ukrainians. There was no way to prevent that but by other than military means. On February 22 Russia recognized the Donbas republics as independent states and signed defense agreements with them. The same day the German chancellor Olaf Scholz canceled the launch of the undersea Nord Stream II pipeline which was to transport Russian gas to Germany’s industries and consumers. The Europeans launched a sequence of extremely harsh economic sanctions against Russia which, prodded by the U.S., had been prepared months in advance. Russia’s Special Military Operation, under Article 51 of the UN Charter, commenced on February 24.

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“Without that we won’t even talk to them. Nobody is going to tolerate humiliation..”

West Should Treat Us With Respect – Putin (RT)

Russia and Belarus are countries that are prepared to work with the West but only if there is mutual respect, presidents Vladimir Putin and Alexander Lukashenko agreed during a face-to-face meeting in Sochi on Monday. Speaking on tv channel Rossiya 24, Lukashenko said he believes the West’s future lies with Russia, which has “everything they need.” On the other hand, he added, the West has things Russia and Belarus need and are willing to buy, including certain technologies. “What else do they want? They just need to make responsible decisions,” he said said. Putin agreed with the Belarusian leader, insisting the West must “treat us with respect.”

“Without that we won’t even talk to them. Nobody is going to tolerate humiliation,”Lukashenko continued, noting that both Moscow and Minsk were open to working with those who want to live side by side, building relations based on mutual respect. The Russian leader has previously suggested that the West was essentially waging a hybrid war against Moscow and was looking to “weaken, disunite and ultimately destroy”Russia. In a televised address last week, Putin claimed that Western countries openly admit that they “managed to break up the Soviet Union in 1991”and were now aiming to “split Russia into many regions that would be at each other’s throats.”


As a means to that end, Putin claims the West has been intentionally fostering Russophobic sentiments in countries like Ukraine, where he accuses the US and its allies of installing a hostile government and of turning the Ukrainian people into cannon fodder by pushing them into war with Russia. Putin has also warned Western leaders who openly call for a military defeat of Russia that Moscow is prepared to use any means at its disposal to defend itself and to ensure its territorial integrity. US President Joe Biden has hit back at Putin, accusing him of “making irresponsible nuclear threats to use nuclear weapons.”

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“..the president’s remarks were not an attempt to interfere with Italian domestic politics but rather meant to underline the body’s role “as guardian of the [European] treaties with regard to the rule of law.”

Poland Slams ‘Scandalous’ Von der Leyen Warning (RT)

A warning by European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen that Brussels has tools to discipline Italy if its prospective center-right government fails to cooperate with the EU was “scandalous,” according to Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki. The remark was a wake-up call for member states, the head of the Polish government said on Sunday, as quoted by state news agency PAP. “Is this the kind of Europe we want? Is this democracy and rule of law? That Eurocrats in Brussels decide what a government should be?”Morawiecki asked. He was responding to von der Leyen’s suggestion that, should the new Italian government fail to meet the EU’s policy expectations, the country could be disciplined.

The top official said “whatever democratic government is willing to work with us, we’re working together,” adding that “if things go in a difficult direction, I’ve spoken about Hungary and Poland, we have tools.” Von der Leyen spoke about Italy on Thursday at Princeton University, after it was suggested that people friendly to Russia could come to power in Rome after the election on Sunday. She was asked what the EU leadership plans to do about it. Morawiecki interpreted the remark as a promise to punish Italy, unless its new government is “in favor of Brussels.” European Commission spokesman Eric Mamer said that the president’s remarks were not an attempt to interfere with Italian domestic politics but rather meant to underline the body’s role “as guardian of the [European] treaties with regard to the rule of law.”


A center-right coalition led by Giorgia Meloni’s Brothers of Italy (FI) party looks set to form a new cabinet following a snap election in the country. The outcome was consistent with opinion polls ahead of the ballot. In mid-September, the European Commission recommended suspending some €7.5 billion of emergency funding to Hungary over alleged erosion of the rule of law in the country. A similar punishment was imposed on Poland last year over controversial judicial reforms adopted by its conservative government.

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“..if – God forbid! – the Kremlin will face what the Russian military doctrine calls “a threat to the existence of the Russian Federation,” its nuclear weapons will not point to some location on the European continent, but more likely across the Atlantic.”

Russia And The US Still Have Time To Prevent A Nuclear War (Trenin)

This October marks the 60th anniversary of the Cuban missile crisis, which drew Moscow and Washington into a nuclear showdown that threatened the immediate annihilation of the world. Luckily, the leaders of the time – Nikita Khrushchev and John F. Kennedy – had the wisdom to step back from the brink, and then engage with each other on first steps toward jointly managing adversity in the nuclear era. Given the current conflict in Ukraine, which is steadily escalating toward a direct military collision between Russia and the United States, there is a hope that the lessons of the past can also help to end the present confrontation on a peaceful note. However, we should also be mindful of the major differences between the two crises.

On the surface the root cause of both confrontations has been acute feelings of insecurity created by the expansion of the rival power’s political influence and military presence right to the doorstep of one’s own country: Cuba then, Ukraine now. This similarity, however, is almost as far as it goes. The salient feature of the Ukraine crisis is the vast asymmetry not only between the relevant capabilities of Russia and the United States, but even more importantly between the stakes involved. To the Kremlin, the issue is literally existential. Essentially, it is not only the future of Ukraine, but that of Russia itself that is on the table. To the White House, the issue is definitely important, but far less critical. What is in question is clearly US global leadership (which will not collapse within the Western world, whatever happens in Ukraine), its credibility (which can be dented but hardly destroyed), and the administration’s standing with the American people (for whom Ukraine is hardly a top concern).

[..] The problem is that its highly pro-active policy on Ukraine is based on a flawed premise that Russia can indeed accept being ‘strategically defeated’ and, should nuclear weapons be used, their use would be limited to Ukraine or, at worst, to Europe. Americans have a long tradition of ascribing their own strategic logic to their Russian opponents, but this can be fatally misleading. Ukraine, parts of Russia and Europe being hit by nuclear strikes – while the US emerges from the conflict unscathed – might be considered a tolerable outcome in Washington, but hardly in Moscow. [..] So many of Russia’s so-called red lines being breached without consequence from the start of the Ukraine war have created an impression that Moscow is bluffing, so that when President Vladimir Putin recently issued another warning to Washington, saying that “it is not a bluff,” some people concluded that it was precisely that.

Yet, as recent experience demonstrates, Putin’s words deserve to be taken more seriously. In a 2018 interview he said, “Why do we need a world in which there is no Russia?” The problem is that Moscow’s strategic defeat, which the US is aiming for in Ukraine, would probably ultimately result in “a world without Russia.” This probably suggests that if – God forbid! – the Kremlin will face what the Russian military doctrine calls “a threat to the existence of the Russian Federation,” its nuclear weapons will not point to some location on the European continent, but more likely across the Atlantic.

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“Hungary to hold a referendum on the EU’s sanctions imposed on Russia, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán announces.

“The sanctions were not decided democratically, but were decided by Brussels bureaucrats and European elites,” he said on Monday.”

Orban Says EU Sanctions on Russia Have ‘Backfired’ (R.)

Hungary should prepare for a prolonged war in neighbouring Ukraine, Prime Minister Viktor Orban said on Monday, sharply criticising European Union sanctions imposed on Russia which he said have “backfired”, driving up energy prices. Orban, long at odds with the EU over some of his policies seen in Brussels as anti-democratic, urged a ceasefire to end the war and said the sanctions against Russia were dealing a blow to Europe’s economy. Orban, who was reelected for a fourth consecutive term in April, now faces surging inflation, plunging consumer confidence and the prospect of a recession next year.

He told parliament it was no surprise that governments were falling in Europe, referring to the Italian election on Sunday following which Giorgia Meloni looks set to lead Italy’s most right-wing government since World War Two. “We can safely say that as a result of the sanctions, European people have become poorer, while Russia has not fallen to its knees,” Orban said. “This weapon has backfired, with the sanctions Europe has shot itself in the foot.” “We are waiting for an answer, the entire Europe is waiting for an answer from Brussels on how long we will keep doing this,” he said, adding it was also time to discuss the sanctions with the United States. Orban, whose government is in talks with the European Commission to secure billions of euros in EU funds blocked over rule-of-law concerns, said his government would launch a “national consultation” asking Hungarians about sanctions.


Orban has previously used this campaign tool to shore up domestic support for his Fidesz party on policies such as gay rights or migration. Orban said his government had revised its long-term energy strategy and aims to overhaul the power system and extend the lifespan of the Paks nuclear power plant, with a total of 32 big investments planned to be financed using EU funding. “If the Brussels bureaucrats do not give us this money, which Hungary is eligible for, then we will get the necessary funds from other financial sources,” Orban said, adding Hungary had started talks with the EU and “other international partners”. He did not elaborate.

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“Dozens of nations representing half of humanity either backed Russia’s position on Ukraine or at least acknowledged the merits of Russia’s reasoning..”

Moscow Tells US To ‘Back Off’ With ‘Aggressive’ Course (RT)

The US is taking an increasingly aggressive stance towards Moscow, but no amount of economic sanctions and political pressure can sway it from defending its national interests, a top Russian diplomat said. Moscow’s diplomacy regarding the US is an exercise in “crisis management”, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said in an interview on Russian television on Monday. He described US behavior as being “increasingly confrontational and worrisome.” “We can see how [the Americans] are trying to mobilize their satellites, their vassals to confront Russia in a more aggressive and hardline manner,” the diplomat said. “Washington’s irresponsible, extremely aggressive, extremely assertive course is bringing us all to the dangerous line. We are warning against maintaining this course.”

The brinkmanship has been evident not only when it comes to the crisis in Ukraine, but also in the all-important issue of nuclear non-proliferation and reduction, Ryabkov said. Washington has pretty much dismantled the entire architecture of strategic arms control and is threatening the last remaining bilateral treaty of that kind with Russia, the New START, he pointed out. The core of the problem, the diplomat said, is that the US “does not need agreements, which had been signed on the basis of parity, served not only the security interest of the group [of nations] led by the US, but strengthened the security of entire regions and the world in general. They are not in line with the hegemonic course that the US pursues in the international arena.”

The deputy minister said he didn’t expect US policy towards Russia to change anytime soon, because “there is an anti-Russian consensus of the elites” in the US. But the only viable solution is for Washington to recognize that Russia will not be bullied and act accordingly, Ryabkov added. “Time and time again we’ve told our American interlocutors, to use the most neutral term, that they have to back off and stop escalating the situation,” he said.

European nations, which sided with Washington’s anti-Russian drive, are suffering because of it, the Russian diplomat pointed out. In fact, their subservience to Washington makes them vulnerable to American exploitation, Ryabkov said. “[The Americans] are undermining Europe’s competitiveness, pumping their products into European markets, be they military equipment or hydrocarbons, which the Europeans would rather get from alternative sources under different circumstances,” he said. But Washington lacks global support, regardless of what American officials claim Ryabkov said. Dozens of nations representing half of humanity either backed Russia’s position on Ukraine or at least acknowledged the merits of Russia’s reasoning about it, he explained.

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One of 75, but the only one who gets attention.

Moscow Grants Russian Citizenship To Edward Snowden (AP)

President Vladimir Putin has granted Russian citizenship to former U.S. security contractor Edward Snowden, according to a decree signed by the Russian leader on Monday. Snowden is one of 75 foreign nationals listed by the decree as being granted Russian citizenship. The decree was published on an official government website. Snowden, a former contractor with the U.S. National Security Agency, has been living in Russia since 2013 to escape prosecution in the U.S. after leaking classified documents detailing government surveillance programs. He was granted permanent residency in 2020 and said at the time that he planned to apply for Russian citizenship, without renouncing his U.S. citizenship.


Snowden’s lawyer, Anatoly Kucherena, told Russia’s state news agency RIA Novosti that the former contractor’s wife Lindsay Mills, an American who has been living with him in Russia, will also be applying for a Russian passport. The couple had a child in December 2020. Snowden, who has kept a low profile in Russia and occasionally criticized Russian government policies on social media, said in 2019 that he was willing to return to the U.S. if he’s guaranteed a fair trial. He hasn’t commented on being granted Russian citizenship.

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“Just because NATO and the US get to “invade other sovereign countries at the drop of a hat, or for a few barrels of oil,” doesn’t mean Russia shouldn’t hold itself to a higher standard..”

Roger Waters Pens Open Letter To Putin (RT)

Pink Floyd co-founder Roger Waters has penned a blunt open letter to Russian President Vladimir Putin, seeking guarantees that Russia will not expand beyond the Donbass and Crimea and will never “invade anyone ever again.” Posted to Facebook on Monday, the missive follows similarly frank open letters to Ukrainian First Lady Elena Zelenskaya. In the letter, Waters asks Putin to affirm he wants an end to the war – something the Russian president has already said on other occasions. He also demands a guarantee that Russia’s “territorial interest” stops at the “security of the Russian speaking populations”of Crimea and the Donbass republics of Donetsk and Lugansk, citing the need to reassure “some people who think you want to overrun the whole of Europe, starting with Poland and the rest of the Baltic states.”

If Russia does have territorial ambitions beyond eastern Ukraine, Waters writes, “f*** you, and we might as well all stop playing the desperately dangerous game of nuclear chicken that the hawks on both sides of the Atlantic feel so comfortable with, and have at it.” It wasn’t immediately clear if the referendums in the Kherson and Zaporozhye regions on joining Russia qualified for this response. Moscow would also have to promise “not to invade anyone ever again,” Waters told Putin, complaining the launch of Russia’s special military operation in February was not just a “heinous war of aggression,” but an unexpected one to boot. Just because NATO and the US get to “invade other sovereign countries at the drop of a hat, or for a few barrels of oil,” doesn’t mean Russia shouldn’t hold itself to a higher standard, he explained.

“If you were to reply to me,” Waters wrote to Putin, “I would mightily respect you for it, and take it as an honorable move in the right direction towards a sustainable peace.” The progressive rock guitarist’s appeal to Putin followed his previous open letters to Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky’s wife Elena, in which he urged the Ukrainian First Lady to “demand the implementation of your husband’s election promises and put an end to this deadly war,” a reference to Zelensky’s campaign pledge to “end the civil war” in Donbass. He told Zelenskaya she was “tragically mistaken” in her belief that western “support for Ukraine” – namely the continued supply of weapons – would shorten the conflict.

Zelenskaya responded to the musician earlier this month on Twitter, blaming Russia for “invading” Ukraine, “destroy[ing] cities and kill[ing] civilians.” She insisted that if Ukraine stops fighting it will mean the end of its existence, and urged Waters to address his peace appeals to the Russian president instead.

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Google translation from German outlet Morgenpost.

The “talks” between Ursula and Bourla were in WhatsApp (or a similar app), and she gave herself permission to delete all of it. Dead end.

Trouble About The Corona Vaccine Deal: Why Is Von Der Leyen Stonewalling? (MP)

EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen is under pressure because of a multi-billion dollar mega contract for the delivery of Biontech-Pfizer’s corona vaccine. According to information from our editorial team, the budget controllers of the EU Parliament are preparing a formal reprimand, the displeasure in Parliament is great, the first MPs call for the public prosecutor. It is by far the largest contract in the European Union for the procurement of corona vaccines: In May 2021, i.e. five months after the start of the vaccination campaign, the Commission agreed on the delivery of up to 1.8 billion doses of the Biontech/Pfizer vaccine ( 900 million as an option) for the years 2022 and 2023. According to insider information, the purchase price is a gigantic 35 billion euros.

Not only the volume is spectacular. It is also unusual that von der Leyen apparently personally arranged the contract in talks with Pfizer boss Albert Bourla – the European Court of Auditors speaks of “preliminary negotiations”. Nevertheless, the President of the Commission adamantly refuses to provide any information about her exchange with the Pfizer boss. Now von der Leyen even rebuffed the Court of Auditors – and may have overdone it. The auditors took an interest in the deal as part of a special report on European vaccine procurement. According to her account, von der Leyen conducted the preliminary negotiations with the Pfizer boss in March 2021 without involving the joint negotiating team, as would have corresponded to a Commission decision on the procedure.

The auditors asked the Commission for information about the preliminary negotiations, such as experts involved, timetable, records, details of the agreed terms. After all, this contract will “shape the EU’s vaccine portfolio until the end of 2023”. But the examiners received a rejection: “No information was transmitted,” they write. Internally, the inspectors are stunned: “This behavior is extremely unusual, something like this has never happened before,” says the authority. However, the Court of Auditors cannot enforce anything in this case. The EU Parliament has the lever in its hand. There threatens from the Leyen Trouble. The chair of the Budget Control Committee, Monika Hohlmeier (CSU), calls it “very worrying” that the Commission is refusing to give the Court of Auditors central information for evaluating the preliminary negotiations, especially because of their influence on the proper award procedure.

According to the Court of Auditors, the tender only contained what had previously been informally agreed, Hohlmeier told our editorial team: “The Committee on Budgetary Control will reprimand the Commission here and insist that information relevant to the audit must always be shared with the Court of Auditors without restrictions.” The lack of transparency in the multi-billion dollar contracts has long been an issue in the EU Parliament, also because it plays into the hands of anti-vaccination campaigns. Von der Leyen’s blockade is fueling all sorts of speculation among critics, such as an alleged preference for the US company Pfizer. The Washington-based consumer organization SumOfUs accuses von der Leyen of agreeing to a hefty price increase in her talks with Bourla, even though a discount would have been obvious given the enormous quantity. In fact, with the deal, the price per Biontech vaccine dose rose from EUR 15.50 to EUR 19.50 – the then Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borrisov revealed this out of annoyance at the high costs.

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It’s over.

Just 1.5% Of Eligible Americans Have Gotten Updated COVID Booster (ZH)

Only 1.5% of those eligible to receive the new Covid booster jab – which was tested on just 8 mice, not humans, before the FDA approved it – have taken the updated shot, according to data released Thursday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Approximately 4.4 million people have taken the tweaked booster shot from Pfizer and Moderna after they were rolled out three weeks ago around Labor Day weekend. The bivalent shots were designed to target both the original Covid-19 strain, and the currently circulating Omicron subvariants BA.4 and BA.5, NBC News reports. “I would expect a much higher proportion of Americans to have gotten the booster by this point,” said Yale Medicine infectious diseases specialist, Dr. Scott Robers, who said the relatively low uptake was “demoralizing.”

“The fact that this booster came out days before Biden said the pandemic is over is a huge mixed message,” said Roberts, who added that a lack of public awareness surrounding the shots – or the ‘prevailing narrative that the pandemic is ending’ might have hindered the rollout. “Now it’s going to be that much harder to convince those at risk who are on the fence to get a booster.” As of Tuesday, the US had shipped over 25 million boosters to tens of thousands of sites. Approximately 80% of the US population has received at least one shot of the primary Covid vaccine, and almost 68% are considered ‘fully vaccinated’ by the CDC – meaning they’ve received two doses of Pfizer or Moderna’s offering, or one dose of Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine.


“[..] experts are still gathering real-world data, since the shots were distributed without results from human trials. Laboratory studies found that the boosters generated strong antibody responses against BA.4 and BA.5, and human trial data showed that a similar vaccine yielded a strong antibody response against the initial omicron strain, BA.1. Authorization of the bivalent boosters for children ages 5 to 11 may be just weeks away, Dr. Peter Marks, director of the Food and Drug Administration’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, said at an event this week with the Covid-19 Vaccine Education and Equity Project.” -NBC News Word of the slow uptake comes after Denmark recommended that only those over the age of 50, or who are at risk of developing severe Covid-19, receive the vaccine.

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Trailer

Malhotra

 

 

 

 

 

 

Einstein

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

Sep 192022
 


Pablo Picasso Horses and person 1939

 

Germans Could Be ‘Left Without A Country’ Soon – Trump (RT)
Sympathy For Germany (Varoufakis)
Rand Corp. “Executive Summary: Weakening Germany, Strengthening the U.S.” (RP)
Hungary PM Orban Warns Ukraine Could Lose Up To Half Of Its Territory (RT)
Hungary Can No Longer Be Considered A Full Democracy – EU Lawmakers (RMX)
EU To Deprive Hungary Of Billions In Funds (RT)
EU Launch Propaganda Board Game About Commission Tsar Ursula von der Leyen (BB)
EU Ports Signal Readiness To Let Russian Fertilizers Through – UN (RT)
Updated List of US-Based Food Manufacturing Plants Destroyed Under Biden (GP)
Covid Injections Are Dangerous, What You Can Do If You’ve Had One or Two (TE)
The Power Of Collective Grief, From the Queen to George Floyd to Covid (G.)
Biden: ‘The Pandemic Is Over’ (CNN)
850 More Unvaxxed NYC Teachers, Aides Fired Over Mandate (NYP)
US Marine Corps Quietly Changes COVID-19 Vaccine Policy (ET)
Study Takes Wrecking Ball to Myths About Apocalyptic ‘Climate Change’ (BN)
Secret Documents Have Exposed the CIA’s Julian Assange Obsession (Jacobin)

 

 

 

 

Biden Taiwan

 

 

 

 

Biden inflation

 

 

 

 

Biden pandemic is over

 

 

McCullough

 

 

 

 

“If you are getting 72% of your energy from Russia, here’s the white flag, because you will be surrendering very quickly..”

Germans Could Be ‘Left Without A Country’ Soon – Trump (RT)

Germany could soon cease to exist as a country amid the escalating energy crisis, former US president Donald Trump has suggested. During a rally in Youngstown, Ohio on Saturday, Trump tore into his successor in the White House, taking aim at Biden’s energy policy and the so-called Green New Deal in particular. The Republican firebrand claimed that, although under his rule the US had become independent in terms of energy and on track to become “totally dominant in energy, bigger than Saudi Arabia and Russia combined,” Joe Biden has since reduced the US to “begging for energy.” Trump then went on to cite Germany’s sorry state of affairs in this area.

According to the ex-president, he warned then-Chancellor Angela Merkel that the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, which was supposed to pump Russian gas to Germany, would make Berlin even more dependent on Russian energy exports. Trump said he had sent the “white flag of surrender” to Angela Merkel when she refused to ditch the project. “If you are getting 72% of your energy from Russia, here’s the white flag, because you will be surrendering very quickly,” the former US head of state recounted his own warning to Merkel. He proceeded to cite the “bad things” which have happened between Berlin and Moscow in the past as proof that Germany should not have relied so heavily on Russia. The former US president concluded by saying that “Germany now is going back to the old-fashioned stuff, including coal,” despite its previous pledges to go green.

“But they have no choice, they won’t have a country, they won’t have a country left,” Trump warned cryptically, before returning to the topic of domestic politics again. Gas prices in Europe soared dramatically soon after Russia launched its military offensive against Ukraine in late February, and have remained consistently higher than last year’s ever since. With both the Nord Stream 1 and Nord Stream 2 pipelines now inoperative, either due to Berlin’s own or to Moscow’s decision, the German government has put in place emergency measures to stock up on gas. Multiple senior officials in Germany have warned that the coming winter is likely to be tough.

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Yanis claims that Germany should have invested more in “clean energy”. First, there’s no such thing. And second, Germany invested more in what that is supposed to be than anyone else. And look where it is today.

Sympathy For Germany (Varoufakis)

Today, it is the Germans who are facing a wall of condescension, antipathy, and even mockery. Ironic as it may seem, no Europeans are better placed than the Greeks to understand that the Germans deserve better; that their current predicament is the result of our collective, European failure; and that no one – least of all the long-suffering Greeks, southern Italians, Spaniards, and Portuguese (the PIGS as we were once called) – benefits from schadenfreude. The tables have been turned on Germany because its economic model relied on repressed wages, cheap Russian gas, and excellence in mid-tech mechanical engineering – particularly manufacturing cars with internal combustion engines.

This resulted in massive trade surpluses during four distinct post-World War II phases: under the US-led Bretton Woods system, which provided fixed exchange rates and market access to Europe, Asia, and the Americas; then, after the collapse of Bretton Woods, when the single European market proved highly lucrative for German exports; again following the introduction of the euro, when vendor financing opened the floodgates for both goods and capital flowing from Germany to Europe’s periphery; and, finally, when China’s hunger for intermediate and final manufacturing products took up the slack after the euro crisis dampened demand for German goods in southern Europe.

Germans are now slowly coming to terms with the demise of their economic model and are beginning to see through the multifaceted Big Lie their elites were repeating for three decades: Fiscal surpluses were not prudence in action, but rather a monumental failure, during the long years of ultra-low interest rates, to invest in clean energy, critical infrastructure, and the two crucial technologies of the future: batteries and artificial intelligence. Germany’s dependence on Russian gas and Chinese demand was never sustainable in the long term; and they are not mere bugs that can be ironed out. The claim that the German model was compatible with Europe’s monetary union is also being exposed as false. Lacking a fiscal and a political union, the EU was always going to saddle Club Med governments, banks, and corporations with unpayable debts, which eventually would force the European Central Bank to choose between letting the euro die and embarking upon a permanent bankruptcy-concealment project.

The myth of “green growth”

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“The impeachment of the President cannot be ruled out under these circumstances, which must be avoided at all costs.”

Rand Corp. “Executive Summary: Weakening Germany, Strengthening the U.S.” (RP)

In a recently revealed research report written by RAND, dated Jan. 25, 2022 and labeled CONFIDENTIAL, John Mark Dougan has released what may be one of most important motivations the United States may have in encouraging the conflict in Ukraine: maintaining power. The 6 page report published prior to any conflict beginning, but after the State Department’s ominous warning of “Russian sponsored false flag attacks”, appears to be a photocopy of an official RAND research product, meant for the White House and National Security community here in America. The distribution channels listed on the cover page include: WHCS, ANSA, Dept. of State, CIA, NSA & DNC.

That’s right, the Democratic National Committee is copied on a research report that’s been directed at the national security community and perhaps members of the Biden White House. WHCS and ANSA are mysteries to me, but I thought perhaps they led to the Chief of Staff and National Security Advisor. If anyone has any ideas, please let me know in the comments. The second page includes the standard copyright attributions and language about the mission of Rand. On the third page is where we get to the good stuff! It’s unknown if the report extends beyond the 4 pages included in the Executive Summary, but the headings and text included in those 4 pages are damning. It appears that RAND has predicted that the United States economy is on the brink of collapse.

Rising debt and uncontrolled printing of cash as a result of the economic downturn brought on by the plandemic, has brought the United States to a precarious position. They predict the continued deterioration of the economy will likely lead to the defeat of the Democrat party in both Congress and the Senate, opening the door to an impeachment of Joe Biden in the next session of Congress. “The impeachment of the President cannot be ruled out under these circumstances, which must be avoided at all costs.” This passage alone demonstrates the partisan work being done by RAND and the coordinated tactics in use between the Democrat party and the National Security State, THE DEEP STATE. But what’s most shocking is the lengths they suggest going to in order to maintain control of the nation by both groups in order to protect Joe Biden and whoever is pulling his strings from behind the scenes.

The Executive Summary begins with the title: “Weakening Germany, strengthening the US”, with the ultimate goal being the infusion of cash into the banking system by European and NATO aligned nations. Hopefully being able to avoid significant military and political cost in the process. As RAND sees it, the greatest obstacle to achieving this goal is the ever growing independence of Germany. That problem seems to have been addressed with the war in Ukraine and the sanction on Russia, resulting in the killing of the Nordstream pipeline and the cutoff of natural gas from Russia into Germany. That alone will undoubtedly lead to Germany requiring assistance from other European nations if they hope to save their citizens when the heat turns off. Control of Germany and their governmental decision making process seems to be of chief concern to RAND, which predicts that the destabilization of the US would lead to a quickening of the independence of Germany and the inevitable end of US influence. Once that happens, RAND believes that France and Germany will align, along with other old European nations, creating an economic and political competitor to the United States. As long as these things can be staved off, the global dominance of America can be assured.

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Germany no country, Ukraine half a country. Good times for mapmakers ahead.

Hungary PM Orban Warns Ukraine Could Lose Up To Half Of Its Territory (RT)

The Ukraine conflict could last until 2030 and the West is to blame for making it global rather than local in nature, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban has said, according to Radio Free Europe (RFE/RL). Orban was reportedly speaking at a closed-door event involving his ruling Fidesz party a week ago, with the details of his speech now being leaked to the media. The Hungarian leader allegedly told his supporters in the village of Kotcse on September 10 that he believed Ukraine may end up losing between one third and one half of its territory due to the conflict with Russia, RFE/RL reported on Friday, citing participants of the meeting. The fighting between Moscow and Kiev – which is being helped by the US, EU and some other countries – could continue all the way until 2030, Orban reportedly warned.

The crisis in Ukraine started as a local conflict but the involvement of the West has turned it into a global affair, the prime minister said. According to the report, Orban again lashed out at EU sanctions imposed on Russia over its military operation in Ukraine, saying the bloc had shot itself in the foot with those curbs. The energy crisis, which occurred as a result of those restrictions, could force 40% of European industry to shut down this winter, he reportedly added. In his speech, the Hungarian leader also allegedly revealed that European leaders are expected to decide on prolonging the sanctions for another six months later in autumn, insisting that an attempt should be made to prevent that extension.

The way things are going now, the eurozone and the EU itself could cease to exist by 2030, Orban was quoted as saying. Hungary has remained relatively neutral since the outbreak of fighting in Ukraine in late February. It has refused to send arms to Kiev and consistently criticized EU sanctions on Moscow. Budapest, which is heavily dependent on Russian energy, was also able to negotiate an exemption for itself from the bloc-wide ban on Russian oil. Earlier this month, Mikulas Bek, the European affairs minister of the Czech Republic, which now presides over the EU Council, warned that Hungary’s stance on Russia could theoretically end up with it exiting the bloc.

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Orban got elected with “a landslide election victory with a two-thirds majority in April of this year”. That is far more than all the people who say it’s not a democracy.

Hungary Can No Longer Be Considered A Full Democracy – EU Lawmakers (RMX)

Hungary can no longer be considered a fully-functioning democracy and should be regarded as a “hybrid regime of electoral autocracy,” a report adopted by the European Parliament on Thursday stated. European lawmakers adopted a non-binding but significant resolution on Thursday by 433 votes to 123, which criticized democratic principles in Hungary. This resolution comes despite Hungary’s government securing a landslide election victory with a two-thirds majority in April of this year, representing one of the strongest democratic mandates in all of Europe. The election was also certified as free and fair by a range of independent election observers.

Nevertheless, in a press release following the vote, the European Parliament condemned the “deliberate and systematic efforts of the Hungarian government” to undermine European values and demands. Furthermore, it claimed the situation in Hungary has deteriorated to such an extent that it can only now be considered an “electoral autocracy.” It blames what it regards as a democratic “backslide” on both Viktor Orbán’s Fidesz administration, and the European Commission which it claims has exacerbated the situation through its omission to intervene. MEPs further called for EU recovery funds to continue being withheld from the Hungarian treasury “until the country complies with EU recommendations and court rulings.”

The continuous criticism of Hungary has been ongoing since 2018 when MEPs first triggered the Article 7 procedure, what some consider to be a nuclear option which can ultimately deprive a member state of its voting rights. The only other country to be subject to the Article 7 procedure is Poland, which also conveniently continues to elect a conservative national government, much to the dismay of federalist, pro-globalism officials in Brussels, many who occupy their positions with no democratic mandate.

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Because Orban is right-wing, and independent, and won’t join the anti-Russia craze.

EU To Deprive Hungary Of Billions In Funds (RT)

The European Commission on Sunday proposed withholding $7.5 billion of funds allocated to Hungary, due to corruption concerns. The suspension is aimed at protecting the bloc’s budget, according to Budget Commissioner Johannes Hahn. “Today’s decision is a clear demonstration of the Commission’s resolve to protect the EU budget, and use all tools at our disposal to ensure this important objective,” the commissioner told reporters. The money would come from thee “cohesion funds” granted to Hungary, which are intended to help EU countries bring their economies up to the bloc’s standards. If approved, the funding cut will be the first punitive measure of its kind under the EU’s rule of law mechanism, which gives Brussels the right to impose financial penalties on member states if their actions are seen as violating EU values.

Brussels triggered the unprecedented procedure against Hungary in April this year. According to Hahn, Budapest has since then announced a number of measures aimed at fixing the issues. For instance, the Hungarian government recently said it plans to create an anti-corruption authority to oversee the spending of EU funds by the end of September. However, Hahn said the timeline for Hungary to “accordingly” implement the necessary measures is “very tight.” “A risk for the budget at this stage remains, therefore we cannot conclude that the EU budget is sufficiently protected,” he stated.

The EU Council now has one month to decide whether to adopt the Commission’s proposal. Hungary will then be given one month to reply or request an extension, meaning the Commission could freeze the funds on November 19 at the earliest. Meanwhile, Hungary has said it will be ready to roll out most of its “remedial” measures by that deadline, with the government expected to propose a package of anti-corruption laws next week. Earlier this week, in a symbolic vote against Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s government, members of the European Parliament said the country can no longer be considered a democracy, calling it instead a “hybrid regime of electoral autocracy” due to the alleged failure to uphold fundamental rights and the rule of law in the country.

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“..the EU has opted to instead release a physical board game rather than a digital app or web game which, while antiquated, will at least ensure EU citizens are able to play the Commission’s latest release during a winter set to be plagued by rolling blackouts.”

EU Launch Propaganda Board Game About Commission Tsar Ursula von der Leyen (BB)

Organised fun has once again come to the European Union, with the transnational bloc releasing a new propaganda board game centring around the rule of its Commission President, Ursula von der Leyen. The game — which was released ahead of von der Leyen’s state of the union address this week — is perhaps the latest of a long line of propaganda games released the world over, with North Korea and Communist China in particular being known for wacky authoritarian apps and video games pushing state ideals and ideology. However, unlike its propaganda publishing counterparts in East Asia, the EU has opted to instead release a physical board game rather than a digital app or web game which, while antiquated, will at least ensure EU citizens are able to play the Commission’s latest release during a winter set to be plagued by rolling blackouts.

Imaginatively titled “Von der Leyen Commission 101: Test your knowledge” the game centres around answering questions to do with Ursula von der Leyen’s over three years in office, the aim of the game is to answer as many questions correctly as possible to reach the finish line. A simple core concept, the game features rolling dice, using so-called “jolly” counters, as well as monitoring how many questions each individual player has gotten correct in a row. Despite that simplicity — and perhaps in a classic reflection of how the European Commission works — with padding, the rulebook for this basic game runs to over 100 pages in its English edition.


Although needlessly convoluted, the board game’s constant reference to EU achievements and talking points put it squarely in the realm of propaganda, the likes of which are well known in more authoritarian regimes throughout the world. The specific focus on von der Leyen recalls games published in China built around the cult of personality of Xi Jinping. One of these apps even involves the player trying to applaud the socialist leader as much as possible within 14 seconds, with users encouraged to rapidly tap their phone screens in praise of the head of state.

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Because this can no longer be blamed on Putin.

EU Ports Signal Readiness To Let Russian Fertilizers Through – UN (RT)

Major European ports have signaled their readiness to facilitate the export of Russian fertilizers, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said in an interview with RIA Novosti, published on Saturday. “We are… in contact with the ports. We have received positive signals from Rotterdam, from the Finnish port of Kotka. We are also in discussions with Antwerp and Hamburg. So we are very attentive to this problem and very committed to solving it,” the official said in response to a question on the export of Russian fertilizers. In July, a multilateral agreement was signed in Istanbul freeing up Ukrainian grain exports via the Black Sea and lifting restrictions on Russian grain and fertilizer exports.


While Western sanctions do not technically restrict the sale of Russian agricultural produce, the measures still affect shipping, posing problems to payments and insurance of Russian cargo, among other things. According to Russia, however, the promised lifting of restrictions on Russian exports has not come about yet, with tons of fertilizers currently amassed at EU ports. Guterres said he spoke with EU leaders this week and is certain that the situation will improve soon. “First of all, we are engaged in trying to convince those who put certain obstacles to remove them. This week I had an intensive series of contacts with the leaders of the EU. And I hope there will be a positive change with regard to the possibility of distributing Russian grain and fertilizers without obstacles through Europe to other markets,” Guterres stated.

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Go to GP for the interactive map.

Updated List of US-Based Food Manufacturing Plants Destroyed Under Biden (GP)

Another reader of Gateway Pundit who wanted to stay anonymous has been doing extensive research regarding what is going on with the food supply. “I have created an interactive map that will let you click on (or hover over) an icon and it will provide all of the details of what happened at that location, including a link to the article,” she said. Below is the excerpt of the email she sent to Gateway Pundit: “If I had any doubts about this being on purpose, that is completely gone at this point. It’s almost terrifying seeing what is going on and the majority of people have no idea. Every day something else happens to add to this list. Things are happening so quickly now, that it is mind boggling. Big Tech is covering most of these up or burying them so far down the feed that most people never see them. I have investigative skills that I have used my entire career so I know how to get around all of that or I would never have found what I have.”

I had not heard of anyone looking up actual grocery store fires so that is what started me down this path. Once I saw how bad it was and the patterns that are happening it was clear what they are doing, and I am now convinced they are getting people to help with this just like they did with the election. I realize that not all of these are on purpose but once you see how big this is, it cannot be denied that something evil is going on and we are about to have our legs kicked out from under us…

I wanted to see if you could send out an update for the map? When you first posted my map, there were so many people going to it that they told me it was going to cost several thousand dollars for a certain amount of views. I told them I didn’t have money like that so I would make it private for myself only or try to find another company. Apparently word got around so fast from your article that people bombarded the map company and wanted it back up. They contacted me and told me they decided to leave it up so they could get some good publicity because at that point I think it had almost 200,000 (from people around the world!) views within a week or two.

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Now we’re talking.

Covid Injections Are Dangerous, What You Can Do If You’ve Had One or Two (TE)

Dr. Shoemaker: [Ivermectin is] the only medicine that helps you fight if you’ve got a vaccine injury. It’s the key to a vaccine injury protocol. It’s time. It’s time. This is over because the science is strong. The science is huge, that ivermectin is the thing that should always be available. But now that we’ve created this crisis, we need it even more. We need it even more in Canada, in everywhere. Dr. Shoemaker: I want ivermectin available for everybody. I don’t want you to have to go to the veterinary clinic or the veterinary store to get some of this medicine. It has to be made perfectly and ethically legal in all of your pharmacies.


Dr. Trozzi: For the treatment protocols, if like [Dr. Shoemaker], if you’ve had a couple of those injections or one of those injections and you got these spike proteins being produced by yourselves, go to the World Council for Health, go to the Spike Protein Detox Guide. Dr. Shoemaker is aware of that. The FLCCC do a great job [and] Canada Covid Care Alliance. These are very similar protocols. There’s a variety of things you can do, both natural and medicinal, including one of the safest, most effective medications in the history of mankind – ivermectin.

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On the day of her funeral, the Guardian puts her on par with a violent junkie.

The Power Of Collective Grief, From the Queen to George Floyd to Covid (G.)

As many have noted, this period of national mourning has a peculiarly British tinge, with the rain, the queueing, the marmalade sandwiches. People stood through the night, in a miles-long line that ran through central London, to pay their last respects to the Queen, lying in state. The TV coverage was almost soothing in its bland repetition, and its sombre reverence unavoidable.

For those of us of a republican leaning, the whole thing can feel bizarre and alienating, but for many others, the depth of their feeling may have caught them by surprise. “We have a relationship with these public figures,” says Julia Samuel, a psychotherapist who specialises in bereavement. The Queen, in particular, has “been the backdrop of our lives and this connecting thread. She’s the symbol of the mother of the nation and symbol of this idea of predictability, in such a changing, turbulent world. So we have a feeling of loss.” Precisely because of the Queen’s unknowability, we project our emotions on to her. “There’s a feeling of security in having a relationship with someone, particularly if you don’t actually know them, because you can put on to them what you need,” says Samuel.

We have come to know this outpouring of public emotion as collective grief. “The thing about collective grief is that it can put you in touch with your own losses,” says Samuel. “It can be loss of a parent and it reminds you of your mum or dad dying, or it puts you in touch with your mortality. If you have unresolved losses, it can bring lots of other feelings that aren’t necessarily to do with the Queen, that can feel quite overwhelming because it goes to the same place.”

Grief can be comforting, she says, when we are “feeling it at the same time. People feel bonded and have this sense of social safety, and of it reinforcing social ties. I think that’s why in queueing for the vigil or going to the different palaces, people find that calming. What research shows is that having great experiences of loss, you do worse alone than when you have the love and connection to others.” In a close bereavement, you would want this to be with friends and family, says Samuel. “But I also think there is something about strangers feeling like they know each other when they’re coming to put flowers at Buckingham Palace.”

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That must mean all mandates are also over.

Biden: ‘The Pandemic Is Over’ (CNN)

President Joe Biden said he believes the Covid-19 pandemic is “over” in an appearance on CBS’ “60 Minutes,” but acknowledged the US still has a “problem” with the virus that has killed more than 1 million Americans. “The pandemic is over. We still have a problem with Covid. We’re still doing a lot of work on it. It’s — but the pandemic is over,” Biden said. The US government still designates Covid-19 a Public Health Emergency and the World Health Organization says it remains a Public Health Emergency of International Concern. But the President’s comments follow other hopeful comments from global health leaders.

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director-general of the World Health Organization, said in a news briefing last week that the end of the Covid-19 pandemic was “in sight,” and that the world has never been in a better position to end the Covid-19 pandemic. “Last week, the number of weekly reported deaths from Covid-19 was the lowest since March 2020,” Ghebreyesus said. “We have never been in a better position to end the pandemic. We’re not there yet, but the end is in sight.” Last month, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention adjusted its Covid-19 guidance to urge the nation away from measures such as quarantines and social distancing and instead focus on reducing severe disease from Covid-19. But the agency says some people, including those who are older, immunocompromised, have certain disabilities or underlying health conditions, are at higher risk for serious illness, and may need to take more precautions.

There were about 65,000 new Covid-19 cases reported each day over the past two weeks, data from Johns Hopkins University shows, and reported cases are dropping in almost every state. Across the United States, about 400 people are dying every day from Covid-19. Although official case counts are far from representative of true levels of transmission, forecasts published by the CDC say that new hospitalizations and deaths will hold steady for the next month. For people hospitalized for Covid-19, the risk of dying fell to the lowest it’s ever been during the Omicron wave, according to a study published last week by the CDC.

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Oh wait…

850 More Unvaxxed NYC Teachers, Aides Fired Over Mandate (NYP)

The city Department of Education has axed another 850 teachers and classroom aides — bringing the total to nearly 2,000 school employees fired for failure to comply with a vaccine mandate increasingly struck down in court. About 1,300 DOE employees who took a year’s unpaid leave — with benefits — agreed to show proof of COVID vaccination by Sept. 5 or be “deemed to have voluntarily resigned.” Of those staffers, 450 got a shot by the deadline and “are returning to their prior schools or work locations,” DOE officials told The Post. They include some 225 teachers and 135 paraprofessionals. The 850 let go makes roughly 1,950 DOE staffers terminated since the vaccine mandate took effect on Oct. 29, 2021.

Rachelle Garcia, an elementary school teacher in Brooklyn for 15 years and mother of two, worked fully in person during the pandemic and never got sick, she said. But she refused to get vaccinated, finally taking leave after the DOE denied her requests for a religious exemption. “I really put my eggs in one basket, hoping and praying that at the last minute our mayor would turn everything around in time for me to go back to work,” she said. Mayor Adams never lifted the vaccine mandate, while other cities and states are dropping such requirements due to relaxed CDC guidelines. “I’m angry, I’m hurt, to be cast aside like I was nothing. Because I couldn’t give a proper goodbye to my students, other teachers told me they kept asking, ‘When is Ms. Garcia coming back?’ That made me cry so much.”

She is now applying for jobs on Long Island. In all, NYC has fired more than 2,600 municipal workers not fully vaccinated, according to City Hall tallies. But last week, a Manhattan judge ruled that an unvaccinated NYPD officer, one of the dozens terminated, can’t be fired because the city gave no explanation of why it rejected his religious exemption request.

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They can’t any recruits.

US Marine Corps Quietly Changes COVID-19 Vaccine Policy (ET)

The U.S. Marine Corps issued guidance to roll back its strict punishments for service members who are seeking COVID-19 vaccine exemptions. In guidance posted online on Sept. 14, the “Marine Corps will not enforce any order to accept COVID-19 vaccination, administratively separate, or retaliate against Marines in the class for asserting statutory rights under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.” That guidance was changed following a recent Florida federal court order that temporarily blocked the Marines from taking action against individuals who seek a religious exemption. The latest guidance posted by the Marines made reference to that order, which was handed down in August.

“Involuntary administrative separation processing of class members for refusing COVID-19 vaccination is suspended,” the memo also said, while it directs commanders to “pause all administrative actions related to the involuntary separation of a class member, regardless of the current status of the separation process.” Listing several examples, the Marine guidance added that “no orders will be given to receive the vaccine, no counselings will be issued for refusing the vaccine, no administrative separation boards will be conducted,” and no discharges will be issued. If the Florida judge’s order is vacated or expires, the Marines may still enforce punishment against those who don’t meet the COVID-19 vaccine requirement, a spokesperson told Fox News.

Last year, Pentagon chief Lloyd Austin issued an order that mandated vaccinations for all members of the armed service. “The Marine Corps is aware of the class-wide preliminary injunction issued by a District Court judge for the Middle District of Florida preventing the Marine Corps from enforcing any order to accept the COVID-19 vaccine or administratively separating Marines who refused to receive the COVID vaccine after their religious accommodation appeal was denied,” Marine Corps spokesperson Maj. Jay Hernandez told the outlet. In recent months, reports have indicated that every branch of the U.S. military is struggling to find new recruits, triggering warnings from some members of Congress.

Some have flagged the Pentagon’s strict vaccine requirement while others have said it is because of the slow creep of “woke” diversity trainings and mandates into the military. And others say that high U.S. obesity rates may be a contributing factor, and others note that the pay is not adequate. “We are on the cusp of a military recruiting crisis,” Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-Wis.) told Politico in July. “When Republicans take control of Congress in a few months,” he added, “averting the recruiting crisis will be a top priority of the Military Personnel Subcommittee.”

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This discussion has become far too one-sided.

Study Takes Wrecking Ball to Myths About Apocalyptic ‘Climate Change’ (BN)

Climate experts have published peer-reviewed research in the journal European Physical Journal Plus that takes a wrecking ball to numerous unsubstantiated claims about ‘apocalyptic’ climate change that have flourished in the mainstream press. One such article comes from the New York Times in March 2022, which claimed that: “Scientists have been able to draw links between a warming planet and hurricanes, heat waves and droughts, but the same can’t be said for tornadoes yet.” But such presumptions are utterly demolished with data and fact-based analysis in the 2022 study, “A critical assessment of extreme events trends in times of global warming.” It disabuses readers of the fallacious argument that climate change poses an existential threat to human life and to the planet.

The first point of contention that the researchers analyze is whether the marginal increase in global temperatures has been accompanied by an increase in major hurricanes. “Historically, around 60% of all economic damages caused by disasters worldwide is the consequence of hurricanes in the USA, and more than 80% of this damage comes from major hurricanes,” the authors state. “It is therefore not surprising that hurricanes grab interest and attention. Due to their frightening destructive potential, it is also not surprising that hurricanes are a central element in the debate on climate change mitigation and adaptation policies.” “To date, global observations do not show any significant trends in both the number and the energy accumulated by hurricanes, as shown in Fig. 1 and as claimed in several specific papers for the USA, which report the trend dating back to over 160 years ago, or for other regions of the globe,” the authors note.

“Therefore, after adjusting the time series to take into account the smaller observational capacities of the past, there remains only a small nominally positive upward trend of the tropical storms from 1878 to 2006,” the authors observe. “Statistical tests indicate that this trend is not significantly distinguishable from zero.”

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“a major breach of international law” that constituted “a violation of Ecuador’s sovereignty, of the human rights of dozens of individuals, including the human rights of Ecuadorian citizens, and of all the rules regarding the sanctity and inviolability of diplomatic missions.”

Secret Documents Have Exposed the CIA’s Julian Assange Obsession (Jacobin)

In 2021, over a year and half after the UC Global employees shared their experiences, Yahoo! News released a bombshell story based on former US government sources about the CIA’s “secret war plans against WikiLeaks.” The CIA received direct footage from within the embassy, plotted to kidnap Assange, and toyed with the idea of assassinating him. That US government sources have detailed CIA plots that mirror those of the UC Global witnesses presents fairly powerful corroboration of the most serious allegations. Yahoo’s investigation also stated the CIA covert operations escalated dramatically as Trump’s CIA chief, Pompeo, was incensed by the so-called Vault 7 disclosures, detailing highly classified CIA spying techniques.

This also lines up with the testimony of the UC Global employees who say the company’s actions ramped up considerably after Trump’s election. The pivotal moment, per Yahoo, in the CIA’s decision to consider kidnapping Assange came after they caught wind that Ecuador might make Assange a diplomat to another country. Assange’s legal team was willing to consider countries that struck a defiant posture against the United States, including Venezuela, Bolivia, or Cuba. The Ecuadorian government instead suggested Russia, which had granted Edward Snowden asylum. Assange rejected the idea, fearing it would fuel further conspiracy theories. UC Global captured footage and audio of the meeting where this was discussed, meaning it likely played a pivotal role in the CIA escalation of its covert campaign against Assange.

Faced with the claims of his former employees, UC Global owner Morales has denied working for US intelligence. Initially, he denied any surveillance took place at all. After that position became impossible to maintain, Morales switched his story, claiming it was authorized by Ecuador’s then ambassador to the UK, Carlos Abad. Abad passed away in November 2019, but Jacobin spoke to former Ecuadorian foreign minister Guillaume Long. Long has also testified before the Spanish criminal probe into Morales. Long explained how documents from Morales purporting to show Ecuador authorized the surveillance are forgeries, and crude ones at that. For example, they used the wrong email endings for Ecuadorian diplomatic officials. In addition to fake email addresses, the documents themselves also bore fake serial numbers.

“They [UC Global] were clearly intercepted by the CIA to spy on all of us, especially Assange,” Long told Jacobin. Long called the US-directed surveillance “a major breach of international law” that constituted “a violation of Ecuador’s sovereignty, of the human rights of dozens of individuals, including the human rights of Ecuadorian citizens, and of all the rules regarding the sanctity and inviolability of diplomatic missions.”

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Putin full press conference at SCO

 

 

 

 

Unexpected

 

 

 

Fish fingers
https://twitter.com/i/status/1571400981190959104

 

 

 

 

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