Oct 032021
 


René Magritte Memory of a voyage 1955

 

Covid Vaccine Antibody Levels Drop ‘Nearly 10-Fold’ After About Six Months (JTN)
Public Health Or Power Play? (AC)
Vaccine Related Injuries and Deaths Far More Widespread Than Reported (CTH)
India’s Ivermectin Blackout: The Secret Revealed (Hope)
The Flu Shot Stupidity (Denninger)
NYC Restaurateurs: Business Down 40 to 60% Due to Vaccine Mandate (ET)
Restaurants’ Fragile Recovery Is Fizzling in the US (BBG)
Dozens of NBA Players Refuse the Shot (PJM)
The NBA’s Vaccine Problem Is Bigger Than A Few High-Profile Holdouts (G.)
Senate Bill To Require Vaccines Or Testing For All US Domestic Flights (JTN)
Afghan War Vet Faces Dishonorable Discharge For Refusing Vaccine (JTN)
Largest Louisiana Health System Fines Employees With Unvaccinated Spouses (Fox)
Biden Reportedly Floats Smaller Spending Bill To Avert Perceived Defeat (JTN)

 

 

A mother of 2 young children dies from the vaccine. And Twitter has the gall to call her obituary misleading. Not an ounce of decency.

 

 

Zuby

 

 

Prediction

 

 

 

 

Not the whole story. 2x more breakthrough cases after 5-6 months compared to 3-4 months.

Covid Vaccine Antibody Levels Drop ‘Nearly 10-Fold’ After About Six Months (JTN)

A preliminary study this week claimed to have found a steep reduction in the number of coronavirus-fighting antibodies in patients roughly half a year after they received the COVID-19 vaccine. Researchers “analyzed blood samples from 46 healthy, mostly young or middle-aged adults after receipt of the two doses and again six months after the second dose,” Reuters reported this week. The study indicated that “vaccination with the Pfizer-BioNtech vaccine induces high levels of neutralizing antibodies against the original vaccine strain, but these levels drop by nearly 10-fold by seven months,” two of the researchers told the news wire.


The study, which has not yet been certified by peer review, comes amid growing talk of the possible need for a booster shot of the COVID-19 vaccine to ensure a robust immune response. The study determined that “administering a booster dose at around 6 to 7 months following the initial immunization will likely enhance protection against SARS-CoV-2 and its variants.”


https://www.humetrix.com/powerpoint-vaccine.html

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“All that would remain are vaccinated people humbly bowing to a perpetual mandate in the name of a promised security that is not even demonstrable.”

Public Health Or Power Play? (AC)

If the pro-vaccination syndicate has its way, every American, and eventually every human, will have the Covid-19 vaccination. Furthermore, if recent chatter and momentum are any indication, regular boosters will be soon be standard. For instance, last week an FDA panel rejected a Pfizer request to recommend boosters for the general population, recommending, instead, boosters for people over 65 and those deemed at high risk. CDC director Rochelle Walensky, however, unilaterally chose to expand the recommendation to include high risk occupations, teachers, grocery store employees, and other “essential” workers.

Of course, there’s no clear reason why one booster will suffice. A policy of perpetual, mandated boosters is a remarkable achievement. If nothing else, there is a lot of money at stake in this vaccination ballet. But there is something here that should interest anyone concerned with “the science.” If everyone is vaccinated, there is no control group and therefore no group against which we can accurately judge the effectiveness of the vaccine. This is a monopoly of the most excellent sort and also an exquisite insulation against lawsuits: The government mandates regular doses of a drug the long-term effects of which are unknown—and unknowable—because we will have nothing with which to compare. All that would remain are vaccinated people humbly bowing to a perpetual mandate in the name of a promised security that is not even demonstrable.

“Politicized science” is being used as a club to bludgeon dissenters into submission. But this is not science, for science requires open and free inquiry. It is not politics, either, for legitimate politics requires free and vigorous debate. It is, instead, naked power masquerading as science. Combine this with a chorus of eager and self-righteous minions and you have a toxic situation where power is dramatically expanded and abused in the name of public health. Science is an obvious casualty, but when you dress up power in the garb of pseudo-science, another casualty is freedom.

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“They had less infection when they had no protection. So, that’s a problem.”

Vaccine Related Injuries and Deaths Far More Widespread Than Reported (CTH)

Thanks to a Whistleblower that came forth to Attorney Thomas Renz, the public is now seeing, for the first time ever, hard data from the largest database available in the U.S. to study the COVID-19 impact including deaths & injuries; The CMS Medicare Tracking System. The Total number of American Citizens that died within 14 days of receiving the COVID-19 vaccine is 48,465 according to hard data revealed in the Medicare Tracking System. Attorney Renz is also in possession of Remdesivir death data from the Medicare Tracking System that has been withheld by the government from our citizens. The Remdesivir data reveals of the 7,960 beneficiaries prescribed Remdesivir for Covid-19, 2,058 died. That is 25.9%.


46% of people died within 14 days of the Remdesivir Treatment. The Remdesivir Treatment was established in U.S. Hospitals at the direction of Dr. Anthony Fauci. Serious adverse events were reported in 131 of the 532 patients who received Remdesivir. That is 24.6%. Attorney Renz says, ”This begs the question… why is this the protocol in American Hospitals? Does this appear “Safe and Effective” to you?” LifeSiteNews has more details on the presentation specifically as it pertains to the risks within the Pfizer vaccine. “So, when they weren’t injected, their infection rate was 1.3%, and when they got injected, it was 4.34%. It went up by over 300%,” Kingston stated. “They had less infection when they had no protection. So, that’s a problem.”

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Funny that the CDC and WHO supported it. But the Ziverdo kit has been known for a long time to include doxycyclin, ivermectin, zinc. So there is no secret.

Wonder why Justin Hope would present it that way.

India’s Ivermectin Blackout: The Secret Revealed (Hope)

The Rapid Response Teams derive support from the United States CDC under the umbrella of the WHO. This fact further validates the Uttar Pradesh test and treat program and solidifies this as a joint effort by the WHO and CDC. Perhaps the most telling portion of the WHO article was the last sentence, “WHO will also support the Uttar Pradesh government on the compilation of the final reports. None have yet been published. Just five short weeks later, on June 14, 2021, new cases had dropped a staggering 97.1 percent, and the Uttar Pradesh program was hailed as a resounding success. [..] By July 2, 2021, three weeks later, cases were down a full 99 percent. On August 6, 2021, India’s Ivermectin media blackout ended with MSM reporting.

Western media, including MSN, finally acknowledged what was contained in those Uttar Pradesh medicine kits. Among the medicines were Doxycycline and Ivermectin. On August 25, 2021, the Indian media noticed the discrepancy between Uttar Pradesh’s massive success and other states, like Kerala’s, comparative failure. Although Uttar Pradesh was only 5% vaccinated to Kerala’s 20%, Uttar Pradesh had (only) 22 new COVID cases, while Kerala was overwhelmed with 31,445 in one day. So it became apparent that whatever was contained in those treatment kits must have been pretty effective. News18 reported, “Let’s look at the contrasting picture. Kerala, with its 3.5 crore population – or 35 million, on August 25 reported 31,445 new cases, a bulk of the total cases reported in the country.

Uttar Pradesh, the biggest state with a population of nearly 24 crore – or 240 million – meanwhile reported just 22 cases in the same period. Two days ago, just seven fresh positive cases were reported from Uttar Pradesh. Kerala reported 215 deaths on August 25, while Uttar Pradesh only reported two deaths. In fact, no deaths have been reported from Uttar Pradesh in recent days. There are only 345 active cases in Uttar Pradesh now while Kerala’s figure is at 1.7 lakh – or 170,000.” “Kerala has done a much better job in vaccination coverage with 56% of its population being vaccinated with one dose and 20% of the population being fully vaccinated with a total of 2.66 crore – or 26.6 million – doses being administered.

Uttar Pradesh had given over 6.5 crore – or 65 million – doses, the maximum in the country, but only 25% of people have got their first dose while less than 5% of people are fully vaccinated. Given the present COVID numbers, Uttar Pradesh seems to be trumping Kerala for the tag of the most successful model against COVID.” [..] ” By September 12, 2021, Livemint reported that 34 districts were declared COVID-free or had no active cases. Only 14 new cases were recorded in the entire state of Uttar Pradesh. On September 22, 2021, YouTube hosted a video by popular science blogger Dr. John Campbell detailing the Uttar Pradesh success story. He gave a breakdown of the ingredients and dosages of the magical medicine home treatment kit responsible for eradicating COVID in Uttar Pradesh. The same kit was also used in the state of Goa.

Dr. John Campbell broke India’s Ivermectin Blackout wide open on YouTube by revealing the formula of the secret sauce, much to the dismay of Big Pharma, the WHO, and the CDC. Readers will want to watch this before it is taken down. See mark 2:22. Each home kit contained the following: Paracetamol tablets [tylenol], Vitamin C, Multivitamin, Zinc, Vitamin D3, Ivermectin 12 mg [quantity #10 tablets], Doxycycline 100 mg [quantity #10 tablets]. Other non-medication components included face masks, sanitizer, gloves and alcohol wipes, a digital thermometer, and a pulse oximeter.

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“Why would you study a drug if you didn’t get to keep the proceeds from success? Does that prove they don’t work? Nope. That which you don’t study you don’t prove.”

The Flu Shot Stupidity (Denninger)

Now comes Merck who, big shock, invents an oral protease inhibitor that will be on patent and appears to work. I’m not surprised at those results; they may or may not bear out over time but it wouldn’t shock me if they do. You see, Merck has every reason to invest money in something they’ll profit handsomely from if it does work. Who has a similar incentive if HCQ, Ivermectin, Budesonide, Claritin+Zpak and several other readily-available, inexpensive and off-patent medications also work? Nobody. There’s no way to prevent some other generic manufacturer from making the sales, is there? Why would you study a drug if you didn’t get to keep the proceeds from success? Does that prove they don’t work? Nope. That which you don’t study you don’t prove.

Anecdotes, such as my personal experience, are not data. But bans and public maligning of the off-label use of drugs which have decades-long safety profiles and are safe are the work of ghouls, monsters, and profit-driven *******s who, in the middle of a pandemic, deserve destruction — personally and professionally. May I remind you that it is exactly through that process that we discovered HCQ, which you wouldn’t expect to work for Lupus and RA, in fact does? This of course isn’t the first time either. For decades you so-called “experts” told Americans to eat the “food pyramid”, loaded at the bottom with fast carbohydrates. You also told us to substitute for butter and other saturated fats with unsaturated, machine-processed and stabilized vegetable oil replacements and claimed they were good.

We now know that was bull**** and in fact transfats, which do not exist in nature, have a safe human dose approximating zero. I listened to you folks on “what to eat” for a couple of decades. My body mass and waistline kept getting bigger. After Obamacare was passed it became abundantly clear that within a decade or so the health system would go straight down the crapper and thus if I needed it I was going to die, and it would probably hurt. So I did the exact opposite of what all you ghouls recommend — and promptly lost 60lbs, entirely stabilized my glucose metabolism and now am faster, as a runner, than I was at 17 in High School. Argue with the clock if you’d like.

Oh, there was not one pharmaceutical preparation involved in that and I consume zero on a routine basis as there’s no need. As for the medical system going down the crapper I made that call in 2011. Is it not ten years later? Threatening to, say much less actually firing doctors, nurses and support staff who won’t take a medication they believe, on good evidence, is dangerous — especially when they’ve already had the disease as a result of providing care to sick people for the last 18 months and thus are presumptively immune — into the maw of an alleged health emergency with flu season just around the corner is flat-out insane.

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Well, if you exclude 72% of blacks…

NYC Restaurateurs: Business Down 40 to 60% Due to Vaccine Mandate (ET)

New York City restaurateurs are complaining that their business has been slashed severely by the COVID-19 vaccine mandate, which requires people 12 and older to show vaccination proof for indoor dining, indoor fitness, and indoor entertainment. Pre-pandemic, O’Donoghue’s Pub and Restaurant was a successful business that has been open for 10 years in Times Square, Manhattan. Fergal Burke, the owner of O’Donoghue’s noticed that his business has seen “a massive drop,” since the vaccine mandate came into effect. “We don’t have the money here to survive without the help of our landlord, [who] has been very supportive and has been giving us breaks on the rent, but without our landlord, we would not be in business,” Burke told The Epoch Times.

He said that he needed to hire another person to be at the door checking for vaccination proof, which increased his expenses. Comparing the clientele from pre-mandate to when it kicked in about two weeks ago, “Our business is definitely down 50, I’m going to say 60 percent,” Burke said with a somewhat downhearted tone. “There’s just not people coming into the restaurant, they have the fear of being asked for vaccines.” Burke and his staff have had to refuse a lot of customers for not having the passes. “They’re being refused and they get a resentment against us, they don’t get a resentment against Bill de Blasio or Biden, or whoever is mandating us to check for this.” “It comes as a personal rejection,” he said, further stressing that it’s not O’Donoghue’s that wants this. “We don’t want this mandate, we want nothing to do with this.”

He also noted how the subway is full of people but there’s no requirement to show vaccination proof. “I mean how is that fair in New York City, that the trains are jammed with people with a silly mask on and they’re not being mandated to show nothing, and yet they’re coming against the heart of the city. We’re the ones that’s trying to keep 20 people employed here,” Burke said. “We will go out of business if this continues, it’s gonna force us to shut our doors.”

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No clients, no workers, no business.

Restaurants’ Fragile Recovery Is Fizzling in the US (BBG)

After a brief glimpse of normalcy this summer, the fragile recovery in the U.S. restaurant industry is sputtering. Data and interviews with restaurateurs point to a deterioration in finances due to surging costs for everything from salmon to uniforms and labor shortages. A survey found that 51% of small restaurants in the country couldn’t pay their rent in September, up from 40% in July. Unlike during most of 2020, today’s struggles aren’t visible with the naked eye: Customers are still flocking to eateries, for the most part, in spite of rising prices and lingering fears of the delta coronavirus variant. But the anxiety over mounting expenses is palpable among restaurant owners from New York City to Nashville, Tennessee.

“You might see a restaurant that’s doing well on a Friday night, but that doesn’t at all tell the story of how they’re doing. Probably not good,” said Daisuke Utagawa, a Washington, D.C., chef whose restaurants include Haikan and Daikaya. “For us, personally, we haven’t seen any sort of recovery. We are still underwater.” The industry is raising the alarm. Its main lobbying group this week called on Congress for more aid to help meet payroll and pay down debt, citing a survey showing that a majority of restaurant operators have seen business conditions deteriorate in the past three months. Like many companies around the world, food-service firms are also hit by supply-chain bottlenecks. Underscoring the surge in expenses, a closely watched price gauge hit its highest since 1991 in August, driven by energy and food, the Commerce Department said Friday. “Our kitchen labor costs are up 20%, maybe more,” said Jeff Katz, partner at Crown Shy and Saga in New York City.

“The question is, how much more can the customer handle. We haven’t raised our prices yet, but these costs are real.” The rebound has been shaky and uneven across the country, even for national chains. Darden Restaurants Inc., which has about 870 Olive Garden locations, said last week that sales bounced back slightly in September after falling off in August. Georgia and Florida have seen pressure from the delta variant in recent weeks, Chief Executive Officer Gene Lee said on a conference call. But California locations are getting better. Large public-traded companies including Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. and McDonald’s Corp. are scheduled to report quarterly earnings in October. While the recovery in fast food has been stronger, with brisk sales via drive-thru and takeout options, costs and the lack of workers are eating into profitability.

Calgary

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“I don’t believe that being unvaccinated means infected or being vaccinated means uninfected.”

Dozens of NBA Players Refuse the Shot (PJM)

The NBA season is close upon us and there are some interesting developments that are blowing up the conventional wisdom on those refusing to get vaccinated. The League says that 5-10 percent of players have yet to be vaccinated. This presents a big problem because most major cities where NBA teams play have vaccine mandates that prevent players from participating unless they’ve been jabbed. The League has taken the position that if players won’t play, their pay will be docked. NBA players are paid by the game in most cases so this could get serious. After spending most of the last few months portraying those refusing to get vaccinated as anti-science, Kool-aid-drinking MAGA supporters, the media is now stuck. How do they stereotype mostly black NBA players who refuse to get vaccinated? Especially a player like the Orlando Magic’s Jonathan Isaac. Mr. Isaac, who has already contracted COVID-19, wonders why he has to get jabbed if the antibodies in his system are already protecting him? Nobody had an answer for him because there is none.

“I understand that the vaccine would help if you have COVID, you’ll be able to have less symptoms from contracting it. But with me having COVID in the past and having antibodies, with my current age group and physical fitness level, it’s not necessarily a fear of mine. Taking the vaccine, like I said, it would decrease my chances of having a severe reaction, but it does open me up to the albeit rare chance but the possibility of me having an adverse reaction to the vaccine itself. I don’t believe that being unvaccinated means infected or being vaccinated means uninfected. You can still catch COVID with or with not having the vaccine. I would say honestly the craziness of it all in terms of not being able to say that it should be everybody’s fair choice without being demeaned or talked crazy to doesn’t make one comfortable to do what said person is telling them to do.” Stephen Miller points out the left’s conundrum.

“I don’t personally agree with his vaccine stance. I myself contracted COVID last year and still chose to get vaccinated. However there is a deeper meaning to what he’s saying that goes beyond ‘Bill Gates is trying to microchip everyone.’ It stands against what the media and the Biden administration are attempting to do by shaming and other-ing anyone who opts not to get vaccinated or can’t because of medical reasons. And that’s before we even get into the dark history African Americans and vaccinations, which has no doubt played a role in lower vaccination rates among that demographic. Isaac is rejecting the atmosphere of division, the idea that anyone who’s unvaccinated is deserving of scorn from the desks at CNN, as well as ostracization from polite society by employers, friends and family. Division is the lingua franca of the national media — and Isaac isn’t speaking it. Legitimate medical diagnoses are being lumped in with QAnon Facebook conspiracists. That leads nowhere good.”

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These players are more eloquent and educated than all politicians put together.

Guardian: “..the NBA waited just long enough for some of its star players to irresponsibly contribute to the very reason that the NBA and American society are in this predicament in the first place: the misinformation crisis..”

The NBA’s Vaccine Problem Is Bigger Than A Few High-Profile Holdouts (G.)

[..] the NBA’s vaccine problem extends beyond a couple of high-profile holdouts: the league and the players’ union were not prepared for just how important and divisive a political issue vaccines have become over the past year, and they failed in their responsibility to get out ahead of it. Instead of being leaders on the vaccine issue like the WNBA was – and like the NBA was when it came to the Black Lives Matter protests last year – the NBA waited too long to figure out just how polarized the league was on the topic. Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal said he “didn’t get sick at all” after contracting coronavirus in July, making him miss the chance to represent Team USA at the Tokyo Olympics. “I lost my smell. That’s it.” “People with vaccines, why are they still getting Covid?…

Like, it’s funny that, ‘Oh, it reduces your chances of going to the hospital.’ It doesn’t eliminate anybody from getting COVID, right? Some people have bad reactions to the vaccine. Nobody likes to talk about that. What happens if one of our players gets the vaccine and can’t play after that? Or they have complications after that? Because there are cases like that.” Jonathan Isaac, a religious man who plays for the Orlando Magic, said: “At the end of the day, it’s people [developing vaccines], and you can’t always put your trust completely in people.” And Denver Nuggets wing Michael Porter J said: “For me, I had Covid twice, I saw how my body reacted, and although the chances are slim, with the vaccine, there’s a chance you could have a bad reaction to it. For me, I don’t feel comfortable.

“If you want to get it because you feel more protected and you feel safer, and it’s protecting people around you, get it. That’s good for you. But if you feel like, ‘Oh, for me, I don’t feel safe getting it, then don’t get it.’” Forget that there are no publicly known cases of professional basketball players missing time because of side effects related to the vaccine, and severe side effects are rare for anyone. And remember that some athletes have spoken about lingering respiratory and muscle issues after contracting Covid-19, with Boston Celtics star Jayson Tatum suffering lingering impairment for months after contracting the virus last season, requiring the use of an inhaler before games to help his breathing long after he recovered. Also, forget that these vaccine holdouts are ignoring a crucial reason to get the vaccine, which is to protect others.

What’s more important is that the NBA waited just long enough for some of its star players to irresponsibly contribute to the very reason that the NBA and American society are in this predicament in the first place: the misinformation crisis. And that is the bigger issue here: not the fact that Wiggins and Irving might be willing to sit out 41 home games instead of getting the vaccine, but the fact that the NBA let it get to a point where influential NBA players are broadcasting vaccine skepticism and misinformation to a highly vulnerable American public.

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Including Air Force 1?

Senate Bill To Require Vaccines Or Testing For All US Domestic Flights (JTN)

A bill introduced in the Senate this week would require all domestic U.S. air travelers to show either proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative COVID test prior to boarding a flight. The U.S. Air Travel Public Safety Act, introduced by California Sen. Dianne Feinstein, would mandate “national vaccination verification standards” that would order airlines to require “documentation demonstrating that the passenger is fully vaccinated” against the SARS-Cov-2 virus. The bill does not specifically define “vaccination,” leaving it instead up to the Secretary of Health and Human Services and indicating that the qualifications for vaccination could change over time. Passengers would also be permitted to fly with “proof of a negative pre-departure qualifying test” for SARS-Cov-2.

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With two heart conditions.

The politicians are looking for people they can force to jump through hoops. Teachers, nurses, soldiers.

Afghan War Vet Faces Dishonorable Discharge For Refusing Vaccine (JTN)

A United States Marine corporal who served in Afghanistan during Operation Freedom Sentinel and Operation Southern Vigilance is facing dishonorable discharge for refusing to take the COVID-19 shots as required by the secretary of defense. Having been diagnosed with two heart conditions, arrhythmia and right bundle branch blockage, taking an experimental drug with unknown long-term side effects isn’t a medical option for him, he says, especially since the shots have already been proven to cause blood clots and heart inflammation. However, he was informed that the only medical waiver he could receive was if he was diagnosed with congenital heart failure.

The nonprofit religious freedom law firm Liberty Counsel says it’s “been inundated with heartrending pleas for help from military members who are being ordered to get the COVID shots or face discipline, including solitary confinement and dishonorable discharge.” This Marine’s story is just one of many. “If I don’t stand for what I believe in, I could never look at myself in the mirror again,” the corporal said in a statement issued by Liberty Counsel. “This is everything I’ve fought for and taught my Marines and everything our Founding Fathers stood against. This is completely unconstitutional and goes against more than one Amendment.” All military members who refuse the COVID shots are facing dishonorable and bad conduct discharge for failing to obey a lawful order, a violation of the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

Non-compliance could mean a general court martial at the Divisional Commander Level, six months solitary confinement/imprisonment, and a felony charge. The DOD even created a new disciplinary department, the COVID Consolidated Disposition Authority, or CCDA, according to messages released by the U.S. Navy to servicemembers. Last month, Secretary of the Navy Carlos Del Toro said the new CCDA would decide what happens to sailors who refuse to get the shots, Military.com reported. The CCDA would use “the full range of administrative and disciplinary actions,” Del Toro said, adding that “until further notice” he wouldn’t allow the CCDA to begin “non-judicial punishment, courts-martial, or administrative separation in cases of Navy Service Members refusing the vaccine.”

But the U.S. Air Force warned, “Any refusal to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, absent an approved exemption or accommodation, may be punishable under the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ). Military commanders retain the full range of disciplinary options available to them under the UCMJ.” Liberty Counsel warns that for members dishonorably discharged, the potential consequences are dire, including loss of eligibility for a range of important benefits, opportunities, honors and rights, including: VA home loans and medical benefits, educational benefits under the GI Bill, military funeral honors, reenlistment in another military branch, and the right to own a firearm — all for simply refusing to take an experimental drug.

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How about the kids? Neighbors?

Largest Louisiana Health System Fines Employees With Unvaccinated Spouses (Fox)

The largest health system in Louisiana will start fining employees hundreds of dollars a month if they are married to an unvaccinated person. “The reality is the cost of treating COVID-19, particularly for patients requiring intensive inpatient care, is expensive, and we spent more than $9 million on COVID care for those who are covered on our health plans over the last year,” CEO of Ochsner Health, Warner Thomas, told NOLA. Ochsner Health will start charging employees $200 per month, or $100 per pay period, if their spouse or partner is unvaccinated. The “spousal COVID vaccine fee” will begin in 2022, and Thomas said it is not a mandate, saying non-employed spouses and domestic partners can select a health plan outside the Ochsner’s offerings.

“This is not a mandate as non-employed spouses and domestic partners can choose to select a health plan outside of Ochsner Health offerings,” he told NOLA. The fee only applies to domestic partners or spouses, not other dependents such as children, who are covered by the employee’s health insurance. [..] The rollout of vaccine mandates in hospitals is spurring nurses and other healthcare workers across the country to quit their jobs or face termination over their refusal to comply with the rules. Protests have also formed in recent weeks with healthcare workers holding signs reading phrases such as, “We are still essential,” “Say no to vaccines and yes to freedom of choice,” “Healthcare heroes demand medical freedom,” and “Don’t fire last year’s heroes.”

“We were celebrated last year,” Indiana nurse Adara Allen told Fox News this week. “But a few nurses did end up leaving due to [the hospital] not accepting their medical issues or having a reaction or adverse effect to the first dose of the covid vaccine.” Allen was told to no longer come into her hospital in Indianapolis over refusing the vaccine during her high-risk pregnancy.

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Too late. The perception is there.

Biden Reportedly Floats Smaller Spending Bill To Avert Perceived Defeat (JTN)

President Biden addressed House Democrats at the Capitol in a closed-door meeting on Friday, urging them to reach an agreement that yields passage of the Senate infrastructure bill and a budget reconciliation bill. Biden reportedly signaled that the caucus would likely have to accept a spending package smaller than $3.5 trillion to gain the support of all Democratic members. Democrats such as Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia have called for spending $1.5 trillion as part of a budget reconciliation bill. “He basically said it’s not going to be $3.5 [trillion],” said Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Texas) about the meeting with Biden. “It could be $1.9 trillion-$2 trillion. The president threw out some numbers, so I assume there was a reason why.”


The Associated Press reported that Biden privately told Democrats that not passing the $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill and a separate reconciliation bill would be seen as a defeat and “embolden the same forces” that led to the Jan. 6 riot. Biden also said those forces are opposed to raising the nation’s debt limit. Republican leaders in Congress have said they do not want to vote for raising the debt limit due to Democrats proceeding with spending trillions on new benefit programs with a party-line vote. Pelosi had said a House vote on the Senate infrastructure bill would take place on Thursday, but it was delayed due to progressive opposition to passing the infrastructure bill before a reconciliation bill. “Even a smaller bill can make historic investments,” Biden reportedly said in the meeting with Democrats.

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2 days old.

 

 

 

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Aug 162021
 
 August 16, 2021  Posted by at 6:57 pm Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  41 Responses »


Jules Adolphe Breton The Song of the Lark 1884

 

An article on Jim Quinn’s Burning Platform gave me hope. Hope that the madness will be forced to end, though I have no hope this will be an easy process. The article, by “Hardscrabble Farmer”, describes what happens in France now the even stricter Health Pass measures have come into force. Much of the country is grinding to a halt.

We’ll have to wait and see how it plays out, and sure, the French are out for the summer, so empty terraces and restaurants are not that exceptional. The writer is probably not native French, and doesn’t know the intricacies of the health care system which is not entirely state run, there are indeed private clinics, “elite” is a French word after all, but much of what he says is undoubtedly true. And not only in France.

I think most countries that now cajole and threaten their citizens into being vaccinated will find, and have to admit at some point, that they just don’t have the numbers. But first France:

 

Message From France

Here in France it has gone to the extreme with the “Health” Pass. Last week on the 21st ALL restaurants, bars, coffee shops, and any leisure activities like sporting events, theaters, cinemas, museums, were closed to anyone without “the pass” and all staff at these places are mandated to get the jab to keep their job. It is now a 6 Month prison sentence if you are caught inside any of these places without the pass (the man who slapped the president in the face got only 3 months prison time).

Business owners will get a fine of 45,000 euros and 1 year prison sentence if they do not comply with the use of “the pass” and force all their employees to get the jab. (If you know France, you can commit murder and have less of a sentence) So the result? All the low paid employees quit, they can make more on welfare here (for now). We can still technically “get take out food” but I just tried last night and every restaurant in our town (that is dine in with take out) has closed their doors due to the lack of staff.

As of last week ALL doctors, nurses and health industry workers have been mandated to get the jab or lose their license, practice, job, business etc. [..] Since the Health care system is state run and funded, it has been run into the ground. All the good doctors left France 5 Years ago, all the hospitals look like they are 3rd world hospitals since there is no money to repair them, half of the equipment doesn’t work and not every hospital is stocked with supplies needed for daily needs (masks, gels, disposable gowns etc).

For 5 years Nurses have been understaffed and doing double the work because the Health care system is nearly bankrupt…. So add to this the mandatory jab. So the result? Well they took to the streets by the millions and now all the hospitals just lost another 50% of staff capacity. My doctor just went into early retirement (a.k.a. he quit) and I have yet to find a replacement.

As of Aug 1st ALL large malls, retail stores and grocery store owners and their staff need to be jabbed and the health pass is required to enter for employees and customers. This would be the equivalent to closing ALL Targets, Walmarts, Costcos, Home Depots, and all major grocery stores [..] to those without “the pass”.

[..] As of Sept 15th All public areas and access will be off limits. No farmers markets, no parks, no national parks, lakes, rivers, beaches, recreation areas, campsites etc. and no gathering over 100 people, no churches, no weddings, etc. As of Oct 1st ALL small vendors such as, delis, pizza trucks, sandwich shops, butchers, bakers, vegetable stands etc.

So as of Oct 1st I will only be able to purchase food by internet and pick up (if allowed). Food shortages, Truckers strike, hospitals and airports shutting down unemployment going through the roof. Its going to be a bumpy ride folks. Is it me or does all this seem a bit extreme for a “pass” that isn’t exactly working?

About those numbers: according to Our World in Data, France has 52% fully vaccinated people, and 68% who’ve had at least a single dose. I don’t believe that for a second, just as I don’t believe any country’s official numbers. Because they are used to push more people into getting vaccines, the idea being that high numbers will make them think it’s time to be with the group.

A nice example is a CNBC piece from August 2 about the US, which claims:

70% of U.S. adults have had at least one shot of a Covid vaccine, according to data published Monday by the CDC, about a month behind President Joe Biden’s Fourth of July goal.


[..] “We need to have at least 80% of the population vaccinated to truly have some form of herd immunity,” Dr. Paul Offit, a voting member of the Food and Drug Administration’s Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee, said in a recent interview. “This is a fairly contagious virus.”

But also on August 2, the Mayo Clinic had the US at 58% single dose vaccinated, which Our World in Data appears to confirm, and 49.9% fully vaccinated. But that doesn’t look too great a whole month after Biden’s July 4 70% goal ran out, dies it?

Two weeks later, on August 15, the number of fully vaccinated is up by just 1%, at 50.9%.

At that rate it will take a while. Or rather, that rate means they might as well give up. Because it’s an uphill battle in which the low hanging fruit has been picked. Vaccination centers are closing, demand is drying up. Just getting to 70% would be a miracle. But then the “experts” say that is not enough either, you need 80%. Forget about it. You will kill your economy first. Even at 70%, you have almost a third of your population not working, not shopping, living outside of the economy.

Bill H.R. 4980, posted on Congress.gov., says:

To direct the Secretary of Homeland Security to ensure that any individual traveling on a flight that departs from or arrives to an airport inside the United States or a territory of the United States is fully vaccinated against COVID-19, and for other purposes.

This means half of Americans won’t be allowed to fly. Happy Americans! Happy airlines! And of course these measures will subsequently at some point be applied to all the fields they already are in France. Hospitality, stores, hospitals, etc. Which will lose a lot of their staff. and a huge chunk of their customers. As the fully vaccinated go up by 1% per two weeks.

Oh, and wait, I haven’t even mentioned the 3rd, 4th and so on, booster shots. Think everyone will get them all? If these people have their way, we’re going to live in a world where one week you can dine out and fly, but the next you first need to get the umpteenth shot to do it. And you may get real sick if you don’t to boot.

In Greece, the government last week announced that 65.1% of the total population have one dose, and 61.1% “of adults have completed their inoculation.” That would mean they are way ahead of the US, even though they started much later, had supply problems and so on. No, they’re lying too, all governments massage the numbers.

With the US at 50%, I’d say Greece is at 30%, 40% max. And resistance here is high, so the numbers will only climb very slowly. But of course, threats. A friend who works in a restaurant told me today that they’re threatening to fire him in October. He’s trying, with 5 others at the same place, to hire a lawyer to take their case, but the lawyers have so many of these cases that their fees have skyrocketed.

They base their claim on the idea that the Greek parliament have said you can’t fire people for not taking the vaccine. I simply don’t know enough about that. But it’s clear which way the wind is blowing. Here and in so many other places. Some people are docile, some governments have better propaganda, but it’s still all moving in the same direction.

What may break this downhill, and dangerous, trend, is reports about severe adverse effects, such as antibody-dependent enhancement, breaking through the near perfect wall of silence built around “alternative” views and other things that don’t fit the narrative. You can’t fool all of the people all of the time. But you can obviously try. And you can try and set one half of your population against the other. That’s a lovely idea too. The Land of the Free, but only for those who follow orders.

Note: I know, I know, they’re all betting on boosting their numbers by inoculating every new born child, even the unborn. Problem is, people tend to love their children even more than themselves. And no-one can assure them it’s safe to jab their kids, even if they claim it: there’s no evidence of it, none.

 

 

 

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Oct 042020
 


Herbert Draper Lament for Icarus 1898

 

 

Is it still allowed to talk about COVID without mentioning Trump? I am not sure. And now I did it anyway. Nassim Taleb made an interesting point about that:

 

 

Though I don’t follow the news in the Netherlands much, I happened to see something the other day that I think is a “beautiful” example of why so many countries get their “measures” wrong, their lockdowns, facemasks etc.

First of all, they all screwed up their initial lockdowns, which pretty much were March-June all over. And second lockdowns are more something they like to threaten people with than actually considered options. Unless things really get out of hand, if for instance numbers of deaths suddenly increase a lot, but given the change towards infections occurring in much younger people than before, that is not likely. Plus, of course, no-one wants even more economic damage.

And now what you see is the politicians don’t know what to do anymore. They turn to “their scientists” again, but many have before given advice that is different from what they say now, that hasn’t worked, and that often contradicts what their colleagues in other countries say. And so everyone starts blaming “the people”.

But the people have mostly obeyed the lockdowns and become experts themselves, or so they think, and seen them go nowhere. That makes the positions of politicians and “experts” much weaker than it was 6-7 months ago. It’s about credibility, and they’ve squandered it. Why “must we listen to the scientists” if that does us no good?

The Netherlands, like many European countries, is in a second wave that is seeing many more new daily cases than in spring. Partly due to more testing, but not entirely:

 

 

The number of deaths does not show a similar trend, which can be contributed to the infections mostly occurring in much younger people, and of course a better understanding in medical circles of the virus. However, hospitals are still filling up much faster than in June-July, and many younger people, too, end up with damaged brains, lungs, hearts etc.

 

 

This recent chart of the difference between August and September infection numbers throughout Europe is skewed because of the insane increases in Hungary and Georgia, but it shows that a 300% increase was entirely normal in that timeframe.

 

 

 

 

So what now? The Dutch government came with a whole new set of measures starting October 2. Because people “don’t obey the rules”. And people increasingly say: maybe the rules are not right. By the way, facemasks are not mandatory there in stores and other public places, there is only an “urgent” government advice to wear them. That is different from many other nations. Here are the new measures per Google Translate:

 

 

• Work from home as much as possible.
Receive up to 3 guests at home.
– Children up to and including 12 years are not included.
You may meet with a group of 4 people.
– For example in a cinema or restaurant.

– Children up to and including 12 years are not included.
• A maximum of 30 people may be together in an indoor space.
– Children count.
• Cafes, bars and restaurants close at 10 p.m. You must be gone then. You can enter until 9 p.m.
– You provide your name and telephone number. If someone gets sick who has been in the restaurant or cafe, you will receive a call.
• You must make a reservation to visit a museum or library.
• Stores only allow customers if there is enough space.
• In supermarkets there will be special shopping hours for the elderly and the sick (people with poor health).
• People with a contact profession must register customers. For example hairdressers.

 

 

The first reaction that I have, and I’m sure I’m not the only one: Why 3 people as house guests and not 4? Why 4 people at a restaurant table and not 5, or 30 total in an indoor space? There are family members we haven’t seen since Christmas, but a birthday party is out?

Where do those numbers come from? Did you just make them up? Also, closing bars and restaurants at 10 pm is going to be the death knell for many of the few that are left. Is that worth it?

About that number of 4 people at a restaurant table, the next article from NLTimes about worries in the hospitality sector says that in neighboring Germany and Belgium, 10 people can sit at that same -or preferably a bigger- table. Are Dutch people supposed to drive to those countries if they have a party of 8?

 

Gov’t Advice To Wear Masks In Public Space Met With Skepticism

On Wednesday Prime Minister Mark Rutte issued the urgent advice for all Netherlands residents to wear masks in publicly accessible indoor spaces. This advice was met with skepticism, especially from the hospitality industry. Former RIVM director Roel Coutinho would rather have seen a mask obligation instead of advice.

Hospitality association KHN doubts whether the advice to wear masks in public makes sense, the association said in a press release. “The fact that there is still no scientific substantiation by the cabinet and RIVM about the proven usefulness of face masks certainly does not help to create and maintain support. Moreover, face masks still form an extra barrier to visiting establishments.”

If the government turns its advice into an obligation, the KHN wants the Netherlands to follow Germany and Belgium’s example. According to the association, in those countries up to 10 people are allowed at a restaurant table. “Then we will be open to it,” the association said. The KHN also wants extra financial support should masks become mandatory.

Roel Coutinho, who preceded Jaap van Dissel as head of public health institute RIVM, is pleased that the advice to wear masks indoors now applies to the whole of the Netherlands, but regrets that the government did not make it mandatory. “On the basis of all the literature, I am convinced that wearing a face mask is useful. But only advice makes it particularly difficult for people,” he said to Nieuwsuur. “An obligation, as is also happening in countries around us, gives everyone much more clarity.”

An obligation will also help the stores that have to enforce the face mask rule. “Because what exactly should those shops or supermarkets do?” Coutinho said. “Because it only concerns urgent advice, the responsibility now lies with shops, which makes it very difficult. An obligation is not always pleasant, but it is clear and easy to enforce.”

 

But the best part is the following, the initial piece that got me thinking about this. Turns out that at the same moment the government issues an “urgent” advice to wear them, with a threat of making them mandatory, its chief Infectious Diseases expert, the Dutch Fauci, says he sees little benefit is wearing non-medical masks. As, ironically, Fauci, who used to say they were useless, now calls them very beneficial. Google translate again:

 

Van Dissel Insists: Ordinary Face Masks Have Little Effect

The frequent use of masks in other countries, the pressure of public opinion in his own country, or even a direct appeal from his famous American counterpart Anthony Fauci: Jaap van Dissel sticks to his position. When asked, the director of Infectious Diseases at the RIVM repeats that, according to him, masks have “an exceptionally small effect” on the attempts to contain the spread of the corona virus. In an interview with the NOS, he calls the cabinet’s recent decision to urgently recommend masks in public indoor spaces, therefore primarily a political decision rather than one based on medical grounds.

Since the start of the corona crisis, Van Dissel has emphasized that he sees little benefit in wearing non-medical face masks, especially because it could evoke a sense of false security and possibly divert attention from other rules. Although he acknowledges that there are studies that signal a positive effect of face masks, he believes they are difficult to extrapolate to the corona crisis.

“For example, medical mouth masks were often used in those studies and measures such as the one and a half meters are not taken into account,” he explains. There are also studies that are less positive about masks, he says. “That leads us to consider that we have not given a positive advice about it. That is just the story. That another decision is taken, based on political considerations, that it should be so.”

In addition, according to Van Dissel, the alleged effectiveness of non-medical face masks is nothing compared to the usefulness of other measures such as keeping sufficient distance from each other, washing hands regularly and staying at home in case of complaints. Earlier this week, the Outbreak Management Team, the advisory body of the cabinet which Van Dissel chairs, made some adjustments to the advice on face masks for the first time.

For example, the OMT wrote that masks could be recommended in places where sufficient distance from each other cannot always be kept “such as in busy shops”. For the same reason, a mask has been mandatory in public transport since June. According to Van Dissel, the change in the OMT advice has nothing to do with a changed view of mouth masks, but more to do with people’s sense of safety. “Of course, as OMT, we have also realized that some people would prefer to wear a mouth mask. If someone feels safer, we are fine with that,” he says.

 

The government says: wear a mask, and its chief scientific adviser says: don’t bother. Great message. And people don’t miss that. I’ve said it before: every government today should have a generous supply of N95 masks ready. They don’t because their experts long said they were not necessary. While some keep claiming cloth masks are useful, but “more to do with people’s sense of safety”.

I don’t know about you, but all these people with these useless masks on where they’re not needed, like outside, don’t make me feel safe at all. They make me think I’m surrounded by fools. And is anyone going to believe that 4 at a table is better than 10? How can they when just across the border the opinion is so different? If you ask me, the time of being able to order your citizens around on what to do and what not, may be ending for many governments. And they have only themselves to blame.

The only realistic thing to do at this point appears to be to give people back their own responsibility. If only because taking it away from them didn’t work.

 

 

 

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Sep 052020
 
 September 5, 2020  Posted by at 10:04 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  11 Responses »


John Guttman 1st drive-in theater in California, Los Angeles 1935

 

Russia’s COVID19 Vaccine Showed Antibody Response In Initial Trials (R.)
Post-COVID Syndrome Severely Damages Children’s Hearts (MedEx)
Back to School…D’ya Think? (Kunstler)
Joe Biden Goes Full Ron Burgundy (ZH)
Stocks Are Up. Wages Are Down. What Does it Mean? (EFTD)
Fed Chair Powell: Wearing Masks Can Lead To ‘Enormous’ Economic Gains (Y!)
Nearly Two-Thirds Of New York Restaurants Could Close By Year’s End (JTN)
DOJ, Flynn Lawyers Urge Judge To Move ‘With Dispatch’ To Dismiss Charges (JTN)
In Joint Motion With DOJ, Flynn Requests Court Expedite Ruling (SAC)
Why Capitalism Creates Pointless Jobs (David Graeber)

 

 

On the COVID front, the numbers get uglier, but the Russian vaccine works, so how many have we ordered, did you say? Can we get the billions in development funds back from Big Pharma?

On the election front, it’s getting harder to find news, because the polarization is getting so extreme. The Atlantic piece about Trump badmouthing soldiers is on the level of eating babies stories, but people eat it up. What else do they have in store? And why isn’t anyone calling for calm?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ben Hunt

 

 

It seems to work. What are we waiting for?

Russia’s COVID19 Vaccine Showed Antibody Response In Initial Trials (R.)

Russia’s “Sputnik-V” COVID-19 vaccine produced an antibody response in all participants in early-stage trials, according to results published on Friday by The Lancet medical journal that were hailed by Moscow as an answer to its critics. The results of the two trials, conducted in June-July this year and involving 76 participants, showed 100% of participants developing antibodies to the new coronavirus and no serious side effects, The Lancet said. Russia licensed the two-shot jab for domestic use in August, the first country to do so and before any data had been published or a large-scale trial begun.

“The two 42-day trials – including 38 healthy adults each – did not find any serious adverse effects among participants, and confirmed that the vaccine candidates elicit an antibody response,” The Lancet said. “Large, long-term trials including a placebo comparison, and further monitoring are needed to establish the long-term safety and effectiveness of the vaccine for preventing COVID-19 infection,” it said. The vaccine is named Sputnik-V in homage to the world’s first satellite, launched by the Soviet Union. Some Western experts have warned against its use until all internationally approved testing and regulatory steps have been taken.

But with the results now published for the first time in an international peer-reviewed journal, and with a 40,000-strong later-stage trial launched last week, a senior Russian official said Moscow had faced down its critics abroad. “With this (publication) we answer all of the questions of the West that were diligently asked over the past three weeks, frankly with the clear goal of tarnishing the Russian vaccine,” said Kirill Dmitriev, the head of the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), Russia’s sovereign wealth fund, which has backed the vaccine. “All of the boxes are checked,” he told Reuters. “Now… we will start asking questions of some of the Western vaccines.”

Read more …

More freak stuff.

Post-COVID Syndrome Severely Damages Children’s Hearts (MedEx)

Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C), believed to be linked to COVID-19, damages the heart to such an extent that some children will need lifelong monitoring and interventions, said the senior author of a medical literature review published Sept. 4 in EClinicalMedicine, a journal of The Lancet. Case studies also show MIS-C can strike seemingly healthy children without warning three or four weeks after asymptomatic infections, said Alvaro Moreira, MD, MSc, of The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. Dr. Moreira, a neonatologist, is an assistant professor of pediatrics in the university’s Joe R. and Teresa Lozano Long School of Medicine.


“According to the literature, children did not need to exhibit the classic upper respiratory symptoms of COVID-19 to develop MIS-C, which is frightening,” Dr. Moreira said. “Children might have no symptoms, no one knew they had the disease, and a few weeks later, they may develop this exaggerated inflammation in the body.” The team reviewed 662 MIS-C cases reported worldwide between Jan. 1 and July 25.

Among the findings:
• 71% of the children were admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU).
• 60% presented with shock.
• Average length of stay in the hospital was 7.9 days.
• 100% had fever, 73.7% had abdominal pain or diarrhea, and 68.3% suffered vomiting.
• 90% had an echocardiogram (EKG) test and 54% of the results were abnormal.
• 2.2% of the children required mechanical ventilation.
• 4.4% required extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO).
• 11 children died.


“This is a new childhood disease that is believed to be associated with SARS-CoV-2,” Dr. Moreira said. “It can be lethal because it affects multiple organ systems. Whether it be the heart and the lungs, the gastrointestinal system or the neurologic system, it has so many different faces that initially it was challenging for clinicians to understand.” The amount of inflammation in MIS-C surpasses two similar pediatric conditions, Kawasaki disease and toxic shock syndrome. “The saving grace is that treating these patients with therapies commonly used for Kawasaki—immunoglobulin and glucocorticosteroids—has been effective,” Dr. Moreira said.

Read more …

“Covid has initiated the death of public ed in America..”

Back to School…D’ya Think? (Kunstler)

“…Covid has initiated the death of public ed in America…. The state cannot decide whether we should start full remote or whether we should try some weird hybrid schedule. Nobody can make a decision. The union is pissed. They know most of the classrooms are poorly ventilated and too small and they see nothing but a ‘cruise ship’ scenario unfolding. Remote is terrible, but it is better than nothing….” Before we go further, remember the first principle of the long emergency: anything organized at the giant scale is liable to fail. During the post-war growth spurt, we consolidated all the nation’s schools into giant districts serviced by the yellow bus fleets bringing thousands of kids together in buildings designed to look like insecticide factories.

And when that project was complete, what did we get? Two decades of mass shootings in schools. I don’t think we got the correct message from this — which is that this manner of schooling produces so much ennui and anomie that some kids turn homicidal by the time they hit their teens. The fact that this condition remains unrecognized, and certainly absent from public discussion, says a lot about our disastrous collective psychology of previous investment: having set up this miserable system at titanic expense, we can’t even think about changing it. Now, as is usual in human history, the process will happen emergently, on its own, whether we like it or not, because circumstances demand it.

Another matter absent from news media is what happens when falling tax revenues start to bite the giant consolidated school districts. My physics teacher correspondent in New England writes: “School finances are in full reverse mode. Whispered in the hallways before every school committee and in every town council chamber is the awesome reality that sales tax and property tax collections are down 25 – 30 percent. The fear is palpable…. It seems to me that Public Ed as we currently know it will be history in about four years. It is a big edifice. It will take a few years to fully implode, but not a decade. There’s no money left to keep it going as it is.”

Read more …

This was just too funny.

Joe Biden Goes Full Ron Burgundy (ZH)

Joe Biden engaged in a giant softball game with the press today – perhaps best described by Newsbusters’ Curtis Houck as not “even putting the ball on the tee. This is hitting the ball over the stands and letting Biden run the bases.” But before we get the choreographed Q&A, you should know that Biden went full Ron Burgundy today – reading “end of quote” off the teleprompter. The Friday flub comes just one day after Biden read ‘topline message’ off another teleprompter. In short, Biden is now having issues with ‘behind the curtain’ media cues.

Hillary
https://twitter.com/i/status/1302033150164586497

Read more …

“Since 2017, Bezos’ net worth has grown by about $4 million per hour..”

Stocks Are Up. Wages Are Down. What Does it Mean? (EFTD)


If you listen carefully, you can hear Jeff Bezos getting richer. There’s the sound again. Another billion in Bezos’ coffers. Let’s put some numbers to this sound of money. Since 2017, Bezos’ net worth has grown by about $4 million per hour — roughly 500,000 times the US minimum wage.1 This accumulation of wealth would be absurd during normal times. Today, as many workers lose their jobs to a brutal pandemic, it’s obscene. While Bezos is the pinnacle of capitalist excess, his wealth is part of a larger story. Over the last 40 years, stock prices have surged while wages have stagnated. What does this trend mean? In this post, I take a deep dive into the stock market. I’ll first tell you what the stock market is not. It’s not an indicator of ‘productive capacity’. Nor is it ‘fictitious capital’. So what is it?

The stock market, argue Jonathan Nitzan and Shimshon Bichler, is how capitalists quantify their power. To understand what Nitzan and Bichler are talking about, we’ll unmask the ritual that defines our social order — the ritual of capitalization. Read on to take the red pill and lift the veil of capitalist ideology. When it comes to the stock market, many people believe they have original insight. Often, however, they’re parroting old ideas. Noting this tendency, economist John Maynard Keynes wrote: “[T]he ideas of economists and political philosophers … are more powerful than is commonly understood. Indeed the world is ruled by little else. Practical men, who believe themselves to be quite exempt from any intellectual influences, are usually the slaves of some defunct economist.” (Keynes in The General Theory)

When it comes to interpreting the stock market, there are two big ideas. Both come from ‘defunct economists’. The first big idea is that rising stocks are good for everybody. I’ll call this the ‘good-for-GM’ worldview (for reasons explained below). This big idea owes not to any single economist, but to an entire defunct school: neoclassical economics. The second big idea is that the stock market is disconnected from the rest of the economy. I’ll call this the ‘fictitious-capital’ worldview. It’s an idea that dates back to Karl Marx (who had a defunct view of capital). Let’s unpack these ideas.

Read more …

He doubles as a doctor?

Fed Chair Powell: Wearing Masks Can Lead To ‘Enormous’ Economic Gains (Y!)

Federal Reserve Chairman Jay Powell said Friday that Americans should wear masks and follow social distancing guidelines to ensure an economic recovery. “There’s actually enormous economic gains to be had nationwide from people wearing masks and keeping their distance,” Powell told NPR. Powell added that short of a vaccine, such measures enable people to “go back to work and not get sick.” Powell also spoke about the August jobs report, describing the addition of 1.371 million payrolls in August as “a good one.” The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported the new numbers on Friday morning, which also showed the unemployment rate falling to 8.4% — below the street’s expectations.

Powell pointed out that the August gains were not as large as those in May and June. “I guess I would just say, the recovery is continuing,” Powell said Friday in a clip aired on NPR’s “All Things Considered.” “We do think it will get harder from here because of those areas of the economy that are so directly affected by the pandemic still.” Powell’s remarks on Friday mark his third media interview since the COVID-19 crisis began. On March 26, Powell appeared on NBC’s “Today Show” and in mid-May, CBS’s “60 Minutes” interviewed Powell. The Fed Chairman’s remarks to NPR will be the last from Fed officials as policymakers head into a media blackout ahead of the Federal Open Market Committee’s meeting on September 15 and 16.

“We think that the economy’s going to need low interest rates, which support economic activity, for an extended period of time,” he told NPR. “It will be measured in years. The Fed chief also emphasized that more fiscal support is needed from lawmakers at the White House and Capitol Hill, for example on eviction moratoriums. “We shouldn’t let those people lose everything they have and have to move out or be evicted and move in with family. That’s also not going to be good for containing the COVID spread,” he said.

Read more …

Eat at home.

Nearly Two-Thirds Of New York Restaurants Could Close By Year’s End (JTN)

New York restaurants are taking the hit from Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s extended coronavirus shutdowns, with almost two-thirds of owners saying they could be out of business by year’s end, according to a survey released Thursday. The survey by the New York State Restaurant Association is based on responses from over 1,000 restaurant owners in the state and provides a window into the future of the previously booming industry, as the pandemic nears six months. Roughly 63% of respondents said they could likely close by the end of the year without some form of financial relief and 36% said they expect to still be in business in January. “It is painfully clear that without financial assistance, the restaurant industry in New York State could collapse,” said Melissa Fleischut, the NYSRA’s president and CEO.


“These recent survey results illustrate just how dire the financial situation has become for most restaurants, and it shows how critical it is that elected officials understand the urgency of the situation.” Restaurant owners need financial support but ultimately want increased indoor dining capacity and in NYC the ability to open for indoor dining. New York city officials said earlier this week that roughly 1,300 of the city’s 25,000 restaurants and bars have shut down amid the pandemic. “We are now asking the governor, the state Legislature and those at the federal level to simply help us survive. Without further assistance, the restaurant industry as we know it could be gone in a New York minute,” Fleischut also said.

Read more …

Why am I thinking the judge will let it go to the Supreme Court? What does he have to lose?

DOJ, Flynn Lawyers Urge Judge To Move ‘With Dispatch’ To Dismiss Charges (JTN)

The Justice Department and Michael Flynn’s defense team jointly asked a federal judge Friday to move “with dispatch” to complete a ruling on whether to dismiss the former Trump adviser’s guilty plea and related criminal charge from the Russia probe. The two sides, which agree the case should now be dismissed based on exculpatory evidence of innocence made public earlier this year, laid out a schedule in a joint status report to complete briefs, reports and hearings in September. “The United States and General Flynn agree that this Court should resolve the pending motion to dismiss with dispatch,” their report argued. “Any delay would harm both the government, which must expend resources on a case that it has determined should be dismissed, and General Flynn, who faces impairments on his liberty and the cloud of a pending prosecution that the Executive Branch seeks to end.”


The filing came just days after the full DC Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a three-judge panel’s decision and refused to grant a writ of mandamus that would have dismissed the charge against Flynn. The appeals court sent the case back to U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan and asked him to move quickly to resolve the matter. Flynn withdrew his guilty plea nearly a year ago and the Trump DOJ concluded earlier this year that Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s prosecution of the former Trump national security adviser for lying to the FBI was unwarranted.

https://twitter.com/SidneyPowell1/status/1301996116494475270

Read more …

“..there is no reason for any delay.”

In Joint Motion With DOJ, Flynn Requests Court Expedite Ruling (SAC)

Former National Security Advisor Michael T. Flynn and the Department of Justice filed a motion late Friday to expedite his case after the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit denied his petition for a writ of mandamus against Judge Emmet Sullivan, who is overseeing the case. Flynn’s case has been a roller coaster ride since the former Special Counsel Robert Mueller targeted the former director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, who went on to be a loyal and trusted member of Trump’s team in 2016. Moreover, Flynn has been up against a behemoth of opposition from former Obama officials and Sullivan, who has acted more like a prosecutor than a judge. The circumstances surrounding Flynn’s case have led Trump, along with many others, to call for his exoneration.

Evidence discovered over the past year by the DOJ’s Inspector General, Flynn’s attorney, Sidney Powell, and an appointed counsel put in place by Attorney General William Barr reveal extensive malfeasance in the FBI’s handling of its investigation into the Trump campaign and Flynn. The litany of evidence collected during the investigations led the Justice Department to request a dismissal Flynn’s case. Unfortunately, the request to dismiss the case was politicized by Judge Sullivan, who is overseeing Flynn’s case. He has been fighting the request and accusing Barr of intervening on behalf of Trump. Because of this, Sullivan appointed an amicus curiae, a friend of the court, to argue on his behalf as to why the case should not be dismissed until he reviews it further.

Powell fought back against Sullivan’s unusual actions but could not persuade the appellate court last week to order Sullivan to dismiss the case against Flynn based on the Justice Department’s motion to have his case dismissed. In effect, Flynn and his family have faced an extraordinary ordeal over the past three years that has left the three-star general and war hero depleted of funds and emotionally strained. “We look forward to getting a ruling on the government’s motion to dismiss as soon as possible,” Powell told SaraACarter.com. “Between the issues fully briefed for the Court of Appeals in which Judge Sullivan fully participated as if he were a party and the briefing already filed in his court, there is no reason for any delay.” In the motion Powell and the Justice Department argue that it “is not necessary, however, for this Court to wait until September 21 to proceed with this case. The Court instead may, and should, set a schedule to resolve this case as soon as possible.”

Read more …

4 years ago.

Why Capitalism Creates Pointless Jobs (David Graeber)

In the year 1930, John Maynard Keynes predicted that technology would have advanced sufficiently by century’s end that countries like Great Britain or the United States would achieve a 15-hour work week. There’s every reason to believe he was right. In technological terms, we are quite capable of this. And yet it didn’t happen. Instead, technology has been marshaled, if anything, to figure out ways to make us all work more. In order to achieve this, jobs have had to be created that are, effectively, pointless. Huge swathes of people, in Europe and North America in particular, spend their entire working lives performing tasks they secretly believe do not really need to be performed. The moral and spiritual damage that comes from this situation is profound. It is a scar across our collective soul. Yet virtually no one talks about it.

Why did Keynes’ promised utopia – still being eagerly awaited in the ‘60s – never materialise? The standard line today is that he didn’t figure in the massive increase in consumerism. Given the choice between less hours and more toys and pleasures, we’ve collectively chosen the latter. This presents a nice morality tale, but even a moment’s reflection shows it can’t really be true. Yes, we have witnessed the creation of an endless variety of new jobs and industries since the ‘20s, but very few have anything to do with the production and distribution of sushi, iPhones, or fancy sneakers.

So what are these new jobs, precisely? A recent report comparing employment in the US between 1910 and 2000 gives us a clear picture (and I note, one pretty much exactly echoed in the UK). Over the course of the last century, the number of workers employed as domestic servants, in industry, and in the farm sector has collapsed dramatically. At the same time, “professional, managerial, clerical, sales, and service workers” tripled, growing “from one-quarter to three-quarters of total employment.” In other words, productive jobs have, just as predicted, been largely automated away (even if you count industrial workers globally, including the toiling masses in India and China, such workers are still not nearly so large a percentage of the world population as they used to be).

But rather than allowing a massive reduction of working hours to free the world’s population to pursue their own projects, pleasures, visions, and ideas, we have seen the ballooning not even so much of the “service” sector as of the administrative sector, up to and including the creation of whole new industries like financial services or telemarketing, or the unprecedented expansion of sectors like corporate law, academic and health administration, human resources, and public relations. And these numbers do not even reflect on all those people whose job is to provide administrative, technical, or security support for these industries, or for that matter the whole host of ancillary industries (dog-washers, all-night pizza deliverymen) that only exist because everyone else is spending so much of their time working in all the other ones.

These are what I propose to call “bullshit jobs.”

Read more …

 

 

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