Aug 012022
 
 August 1, 2022  Posted by at 8:26 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  59 Responses »


Pablo Picasso Massacre in Korea 1951

 

World Re-entering The Coal Age – IEA (RT)
NATO Force On Alert Amid Kosovo Tensions (RT)
Russia Warns Kosovo Against Conflict (RT)
Hungary’s Orban Expects Gas Deal With Russia This Summer (R.)
JPMorgan Says Russia Has Had Little Problem Rerouting Its Oil Exports (BI)
The New Economic World Map (Salamah)
A Community of Common Destiny? (Voiret)
Going to Samarkand (Escobar)
The Myth of the HIMARS ‘Game Changer’ (Scott Ritter)
Severing Ties With Russia Is ‘Absurd And Dangerous’ – German Official (RT)
Ottawa’s Fertilizer Reduction Target Is ‘Pulled Out Of The Air’ (TNC)
Pfizer Posts Record Profits On Taxpayer-funded, Liability-free Products (Sch.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

A stable future
https://twitter.com/i/status/1544708488613531649

 

 

 

 

Trump vs Great Reset

 

 

 

 

You’d almost think the whole Russia conflict was set up by the nuclear lobby.

World Re-entering The Coal Age – IEA (RT)

Global coal demand could reach 8 billion tons in 2022, matching a historic high set in 2013, and further growing in 2023, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said in a coal market update report published on Thursday. “Based on current economic and market trends, global coal consumption is forecast to rise by 0.7% in 2022 to 8 billion tons, assuming the Chinese economy recovers as expected in the second half of the year… This global total would match the annual record set in 2013, and coal demand is likely to increase further next year to a new all-time high,” the report states. According to the agency, demand is being driven up by rising natural gas prices, forcing many countries to increasingly switch from gas to coal and reopen previously closed coal-fired power plants.

The report states that China, which is “responsible for more than half of global coal consumption,” will be the main driver for the growth in demand in the second half of 2022, despite seeing demand drop by 3% in the first half of the year. Demand for coal in India is also expected to rise due to the country’s economic growth and more widespread use of electricity. The EU is also forecast to contribute to demand, as it is increasingly turning to coal in electricity production to replace gas or save it for the winter due to the decline in Russian gas imports. The IEA adds that the coal markets will remain volatile in 2023, especially after the EU coal embargo comes into effect, and prices may continue to grow well into next year.

“As soaring natural gas prices have made coal more competitive in many markets, international coal prices have risen in turn, hitting three all-time peaks between October 2021 and May 2022. Sanctions and bans on Russian coal have disrupted markets, and issues in other major exporters have contributed to supply shortages. With other coal producers facing constraints in replacing Russian output, prices on coal futures markets indicate that tight market conditions are expected to continue well into next year and beyond,” the IEA states.

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NATO appears to be looking for a new theater to fight Russia in. Back to the Balkans, they haven’t done enough damage there. Look who was in Kosovo a few days ago. Coincidence not.

NATO Force On Alert Amid Kosovo Tensions (RT)

The NATO-led Kosovo Force (KFOR) peacekeepers were spotted late on Saturday in the city of Kosovska Mitrovica, located in the north of Serbia’s breakaway region of Kosovo. The force, apparently Italian carabinieri units, were spotted guarding a bridge across the Ibar river, footage from the scene circulated by local media shows. The bridge splits the city into the northern Serb-populated part, and the southern one, inhabited predominantly by ethnic Albanians.KFOR, the NATO-led peacekeeping mission, said in a statement on Sunday evening that it was “prepared to intervene if stability is jeopardized.” The KFOR has been reportedly placed on high alert, with a large military convoy of some 30-40 vehicles spotted heading towards the frontier between the breakaway region and the rest of Serbia. Kosovo special police has been spotted actively moving its equipment and personnel as well.

KFOR said it would “take whatever measures are necessary to keep a safe and secure environment in Kosovo at all times, in line with its UN mandate.” Ethnic Serbs have reportedly set up barricades on several roads in Kosovska Mitrovica and its vicinity. At least one Serb has been reportedly beaten up by Kosovo police units as he tried to get through the barricades. The injured man reportedly ended up hospitalized. The tensions come as the ethnic Albanian government of the breakaway region moved forward with its controversial plan to ban Serb license plates and identification documents. Kosovo prime minister Albin Kurti claimed the move was about equal justice and law in all the territories his government claims.

Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic accused Kosovo authorities of seeking to “impose on the people in northern Kosovo-Metohija things they have no right to impose,” warning that Belgrade will not stand by idly. “The atmosphere has been heated up, and the Serbs will not suffer any more atrocities,” Vucic said. Earlier, Serbian president alleged the controversial registration plan was a part of an effort to force the remaining ethnic Serbs out of Kosovo. Caroline Ziadeh, head of the UN mission in the province UNMIK, urged both sides “to address issues in good faith through the EU-facilitated dialogue, to strengthen stability and security for all.”

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Kosovo’s plans appear to have been put on hold for now.

Russia Warns Kosovo Against Conflict (RT)

The government in Pristina and its backers in Brussels and Washington should stop their provocations and respect the rights of ethnic Serbs in Kosovo, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Sunday. Serbian troops were put on high alert and local residents in the north of the breakaway province erected barricades, as ethnic Albanian police prepared for a crackdown. Air raid sirens and church bells went off across northern Kosovo on Sunday, after prime minister Albin Kurti announced a police operation to ban Serb license plates and identification documents. Kurti claimed this was about equal justice and law in all the territories his government claims.

Pristina’s decision is unreasonable and discriminatory, and their forced replacement of personal documents is “another step towards the expulsion of the Serb population from Kosovo, as well as the Kosovo Serb institutions that ensure the protection of the rights of Serbian residents from the arbitrary whims of radicals in Pristina,” Zakharova said. Kurti is “deliberately escalating” in order to launch an armed crackdown, not just against the Serbs in Kosovo but against Belgrade, which the West wants to “neutralize” using the ethnic Albanians as proxies, added Zakharova. Russia calls on “Pristina and the US and EU behind it to stop provocations and respect the rights of Serbs in Kosovo,” the Foreign Ministry spokeswoman said.

Earlier in the day, Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic said his country had “never been in a more complex and difficult situation” and that the Pristina authorities are trying to exploit the current situation in the world to initiate a conflict while painting itself as a victim. No Serbian troops have crossed the administrative line into Kosovo yet, the Defense Ministry in Belgrade said, describing such rumors circulating on social media as “disinformation” on behalf of Pristina. Local Serb residents erected barricades at three checkpoints along the administrative line, where police answering to Kurti were deployed to stop all vehicles with Serbian plates or documents. There were unconfirmed reports of gunfire and injuries among the civilians.

Kosovo was occupied by NATO in 1999, after a 78-day air war against Yugoslavia. The ethnic Albanian government in Pristina declared independence in 2008, with US backing, but has not been recognized by Serbia, Russia, China or the UN.

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Can Brussels “allow” this?

Hungary’s Orban Expects Gas Deal With Russia This Summer (R.)

Hungary expects to sign a deal with Russia on additional gas shipments of 700 million cubic metres by the end of summer, Prime Minister Viktor Orban told state radio on Friday. The two countries have been in talks for further supplies on top of an existing long-term supply pact. read more “Hungary will have enough gas,” Orban said. “We are negotiating with the Russians to buy an additional 700 million cubic metres of gas, this deal can be signed during the summer, and then we will be safe,” he added. According to data from Gas Infrastructure Europe, Hungary’s gas storages are about 50% full now, covering 29% of its annual consumption.


European Union member Hungary has maintained what it calls pragmatic relations with Moscow since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, creating tensions with some EU allies keen to take a tougher line. Hungary, which is about 85% dependent on Russian gas, firmly opposes the idea of EU sanctions on Russian gas imports. Under a 15-year deal with Russia’s Gazprom signed last year, Hungary receives 3.5 billion cubic metres (bcm) of gas per year via Bulgaria and Serbia, and a further 1 bcm via a pipeline from Austria.

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“Russia’s exports adjusted towards other buyers without a serious disruption to its production.”

JPMorgan Says Russia Has Had Little Problem Rerouting Its Oil Exports (BI)

Russia has been able to reroute its oil exports away from Europe without serious disruptions, JPMorgan has said, adding that the expected drop in output “never happened.” Better-than-expected Russian production, along with the release of oil from global strategic reserves, helps explain the recent drop in crude prices, the bank’s head of commodities research Natasha Kaneva said in a note to clients. Russia’s oil exports to Europe — its biggest market — have fallen relatively sharply in 2022, as companies have “self-sanctioned” in the wake of Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine in late February. However, Russia has been able to shift its exports towards Asia, with India and China in particular stepping up their purchases.

More recently, a jump in domestic demand has caused Russian oil production to rise back to prewar levels. “The market consensus was too pessimistic about Russia’s capability to re-route volumes to other buyers,” Kaneva and her colleagues said in the note Wednesday. “Russia’s exports adjusted towards other buyers without a serious disruption to its production.” “At its peak, the oil market was pricing in the worst-case scenario — a 3 million barrel a day loss of Russian production combined with record-high summer demand — while, in reality, it never happened.” JPMorgan expects Russia production to produce 9.95 million barrels a day of oil in the third quarter, above the 9.76 million barrels a day produced in the same quarter a year earlier.

It thinks production will slip to 9.5 million barrels a day in 2023, staying relatively strong despite the European Union’s ban on most oil imports from the country. Oil prices have fallen in recent weeks, with global supply stronger than expected and demand likely to weaken in the coming months as the world economy slows. WTI crude, the US benchmark price, was down around 10% over the last month to trade at $98 a barrel Friday.

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“…most of the ‘exploitable’ world has been dominated and what remains is Russia and China, plus a few stubborn or poor nations here and there.”

The New Economic World Map (Salamah)

Throughout history, all empires and belligerent nations expanded for economic gain. More land to farm and exploit, wealth and resources to loot, and more people to subjugate and tax or enslave. This goes back to ancient Mesopotamia, passing through the Persian, Greek, Roman empires, and all the way to European colonialism in the past 500 years. Today, it remains the same although it has been disguised to appear docile and friendly, but, make no mistake, it is colonialism – economic neo-colonialism! The shills, however, will present it as development aid, economic assistance, modernization, democracy, human rights, modern values, and may even, masquerade it as improving the ‘Happiness Index’ of the colonized nations.

As such, most of the ‘exploitable’ world has been dominated and what remains is Russia and China, plus a few stubborn or poor nations here and there. Russia is simply too vast and rich not to be lustily desired and has been a target for centuries via direct belligerence or, more softly, via geopolitical ploys. To publicly temper this lust, pseudo-intellectual doctrines have been utilized to justify it; among which is the century-old Mackinder Theory of the ‘Heartland of the World’, which states that whoever controls Russia and its environs, controls the world. As for China, its unexpected spectacular rapid growth to the pinnacle of economic success now necessitates clipping its wings to bring it back into the obedient fold. None of the dominated nations were, or are, happy with their predicaments. Despite that, they are unable to shake off the yoke of neo-colonialism.

They are too weak, deep in unpayable sovereign and non-sovereign debt, threatened by sanctions that cut off their livelihood, and if all fails, there are the heavy-handed tools of regime change with their accompanying bloody civil wars and/or direct invasion and bombardment by their masters. During the previous cold war, when there were only two superpowers, proverbially at each other’s throats, most of the smaller and weaker countries tried to walk a very dangerous tightrope. They tried to maintain semi-neutrality and keep an equal distance from both superpowers. But that was extremely difficult, the hegemons’ carrot and stick’ tactics were too hard to resist when dangled, or very painful when the whip was unleashed. Instead, some discovered that they could join forces, not to fight their oppressors, but just to resist being pulled into their eddies.

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“The only solution to solve these problems and solve the dryness nuisance of the Mediterranean Basin would be the re-greening of the Sahara desert.”

A Community of Common Destiny? (Voiret)

In the Summer months, the north-east trade wind is getting weaker in the Atlantic Ocean, and humid air volumes are brought over the Sahel zone towards North from the West African monsoon zone. This takes place in July and early August, when around 100 to 200 mm precipitations makes savanna grass grow in the Sahel. In our days, however, it seems that going further north, these huge volumes of humid air rise higher than before in the atmosphere of the desert. In this way, the rain-containing air masses reach altitudes like thirty thousand feet above sea level – higher than in earlier years, because the heat emitted by the Sahara seems to be growing: As the humid air masses reach the first sand dunes of the desert, the huge heat reflection by the dunes send them higher and higher.

Every pilot flying north from Bamako or Niamey can confirm that: as soon as he reaches the desert, his plane is lifted higher by the air masses even if he, the pilot, does’nt pull his controls! After the humid clouds rise so high in the air over the desert, it is obvious that no rain comes downs on North Africa and on the Mediterranean basin in the summer months – hence the dryness and the forest fires. The rain comes down when the clouds get cooler after reaching more northern latitudes, after having passed the Alpes. Thus for example the “tropical” rain that came down on the Ahr-valley in Germany in the summer 2021. The only solution to solve these problems and solve the dryness nuisance of the Mediterranean Basin would be the re-greening of the Sahara desert.

Now, around 5000 years ago, the Sahara desert was indeed green! The scientific study of the Sahara desert has shown that this part of the world has been alternatively infertile, or green with vegetation: in the course of Earth history, the Sahara desert has seen 230 periods of vegetation growth alternating with dry climate phases! In the middle of the Holocene climate phase, around 6000 years ago, the Sahara actually had cattle breeding and cultivation. Rock engravings existing in the Hoggar and the Tibesti regions of the Sahara show that. These pictures also show gazelle herds and vegetation. The current dry climate phase began 3500 to 4000 years before Christ. But from those times, huge water reserves still exist underground, the so called “aquifers”. Some aquifers are salty, but most of them are sweet water.

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“UN Secretary General A. Guterres has committed to removing these barriers to addressing the global food crisis. Let’s see.”

Going to Samarkand (Escobar)

The meeting of the SCO Ministerial Council in Tashkent this past Friday involved some very serious business. That was the key preparatory reunion previous to the SCO summit in mid-September in fabled Samarkand, where the SCO will release a much-awaited “Declaration of Samarkand”. [..] it was in the Q@A session that Lavrov for all practical purposes detailed all the major trends in the current, incandescent state of international relations. These are the key takeaways.

How comfortable are you with the US dollar?

Africa: “We agreed that we will submit to the leaders for consideration proposals on specific actions to switch to settlements in national currencies. I think that everyone will now think about it. Africa already has a similar experience: common currencies in some sub-regional structures, which, nevertheless, by and large, are pegged to Western ones. From 2023, a continental free trade zone will start functioning on the African continent. A logical step would be to reinforce it with currency agreements.”

Belarus – and many others – eager to join the SCO: “There is a broad consensus on the Belarusian candidacy (…) I felt it today. There are a number of contenders for the status of observer, dialogue partner. Some Arab countries show such interest, as do Armenia, Azerbaijan and a number of Asian states.”

Grain diplomacy: “In regard to the issue of Russian grain, it was the American sanctions that did not allow the full implementation of the signed contracts due to the restrictions imposed: Russian ships are prohibited from entering a number of ports, there is a ban on foreign ships entering Russian ports to pick up export cargo, and insurance rates have gone up (…) Financial chains are also interrupted by illegitimate US and EU sanctions. In particular, Rosselkhozbank, through which all the main settlements for food exports pass, was one of the first to be included in the sanctions list. UN Secretary General A. Guterres has committed to removing these barriers to addressing the global food crisis. Let’s see.”

Taiwan: “We do not discuss this with our Chinese colleague. Russia’s position on having only one China remains unchanged. The United States periodically confirms the same line in words, but in practice their ‘deeds’ do not always coincide with words. We have no problem upholding the principle of Chinese sovereignty.”

Should the SCO abandon the US dollar? “Each SCO country must decide for itself how comfortable it feels to rely on the dollar, taking into account the absolute unreliability of this currency for possible abuses. The Americans have used this more than once in relation to a number of states.”

Why the SCO matters: “There are no leaders and followers in the SCO. There are no situations in the organization like in NATO, when the US and its closest allies impose one line or another on all other members of the alliance. In the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, the situation that we are currently seeing in the EU does not arise: sovereign countries are literally being ‘knocked out’, demanding that they either stop buying gas or reduce its consumption in violation of national plans and interests.”

Read more …

“At the end of the day, HIMARS – and other so-called “advanced Western weapons” – is but a tool wielded by the same actor who has been systematically defeated by the Russian military.”

The Myth of the HIMARS ‘Game Changer’ (Scott Ritter)

According to the Institute of War, a US-based think tank, “Ukrainian forces are increasingly targeting Russian military infrastructure with indirect fire and US-provided HIMARS systems deep in occupied territory.” It concludes that “the increased ability of Ukrainian forces to target critical Russian military facilities with Western-provided HIMARS demonstrates how Western military aid provides Ukraine with new and necessary military capabilities.” The Kyiv Independent, a Western state-funded propaganda outlet, reported that “by July 7, Russia had lost most of its key ammunition depots, and many of its smaller depots in occupied Donbas. Notably, many key targets as much as 50-80 kilometers into Russian-controlled territory have been successfully destroyed.”

Max Boot, a Moscow-born military analyst who writes for the Washington Post, was so impressed with the performance of HIMARS that he wrote an op-ed in which he confidently announced “To shorten the War, send 60 HIMARS to Ukraine.” I mean, if eight HIMARS have brought the vaunted Russan war machine to its knees, imagine what could happen if Ukraine had 60? Wait, there is an answer to that question. In a recent interview with the Sunday Times, Reznikov revealed that Zelensky “had ordered Ukraine’s military to retake occupied coastal areas which are vital to the country’s economy.” Ukraine, it seems, is winning the war against Russia. Except, of course, it is not. Not even close. The notion that the HIMARS is a “super weapon” capable of turning the battlefield narrative in eastern Ukraine on its head is, simply put, pure nonsense.

Russia has, over the course of the past three months, perfected the art of war when it comes to defeating the Ukrainian military. John Boyd, the famous American fighter-pilot-turned-military theorist, coined a concept, known as the “OODA-Loop” (Observe, Orient, Decide, Act) which represented the phases involved in military operations. The side that could master the OODA-Loop more efficiently than its opponent would “get inside their decision-making cycle,” forcing the enemy to operate in a purely reactive mode, enabling the superior party to achieve victory. Russia has got “inside the decision-making cycle” of every one of itsopponents during the military operation in Ukraine, dominating the conflict economically, politically, and militarily. HIMARS does not change this reality.

The Russian military, like any successful military organization, is highly adaptive – it must be, to survive on the modern battlefield. The conflict in Ukraine is unlike any experienced in modern times, requiring Russian military leaders to adapt operational theory as defined by doctrine to the demanding realities of the eastern Ukrainian front. The fact that approximately 200,000 Russian forces can impose their will on over 700,000 Ukrainian defenders while achieving casualty ratios that are decisively in their favor speaks to the reality of their OODA-Loop dominance. At the end of the day, HIMARS – and other so-called “advanced Western weapons” – is but a tool wielded by the same actor who has been systematically defeated by the Russian military. This will not change, whether Ukraine employs four, eight, 12… or even 60 HIMARS systems.

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“If we realize that we cannot for now give up on Russian gas, then it is bitter but it is the reality, and we must act accordingly..”

Forced cold showers for everyone will not be accepted.

Severing Ties With Russia Is ‘Absurd And Dangerous’ – German Official (RT)

Isolating Russia and ending economic cooperation with Moscow is dangerous for Germany, Prime Minister of Saxony Michael Kretschmer told Die Zeit newspaper this week, reiterating his call for a diplomatic solution to the conflict in Ukraine.“I think the idea of isolating Russia permanently or never again cooperating economically is absurd and dangerous… A Russia that is oriented towards China and has no ties to Europe is much more dangerous for us,” Kretschmer told the news outlet. The official said he was concerned with the impact of the sanctions on Russia on the German economy and energy security. He called for “pragmatism” in relations with Moscow and for the EU to facilitate peace talks and a “freeze” of the conflict in Ukraine, adding that a ceasefire would not only end the deaths, but “create an opportunity for the supply of raw materials,” most notably fossil fuels and grains.

Roughly half of German households rely on gas for electricity and heating, and around a third of the energy for German industry comes from gas. Prior to the conflict in Ukraine, up to one half of that gas was supplied by Russia. However, deliveries have dropped in recent weeks due to either technical or political reasons. According to Kretschmer, despite ambitious energy transition plans and political agendas, Germany will need gas supplies from Russia for the next five years at least. “If we realize that we cannot for now give up on Russian gas, then it is bitter but it is the reality, and we must act accordingly,” Kretschmer said, adding that apart from ordinary residents who will not be able to heat their homes in the winter, German industry is at risk if Russian gas supplies are lost.

“Our entire economic system is in danger of collapsing. If we are not careful, Germany could become de-industrialised,” he stated. Last month, Kretschmer said that Germany needs to ensure reliable fuel supplies before slapping Russia with sanctions.

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I’d call it goal-seeked instead.

Ottawa’s Fertilizer Reduction Target Is ‘Pulled Out Of The Air’ (TNC)

Alberta Agriculture Minister Nate Horner says Ottawa’s edict to reduce fertilizer use by 30% seems like a target “pulled out of the air.” The Trudeau government is looking to impose a requirement to reduce nitrous oxide emissions from fertilizers by 30% as part of its overall effort to reduce emissions by 40 to 45% by 2030. The mandate will result in less food production at a time when the world needs increased capacity that Canada could supply, or higher production costs which will ultimately be passed to the consumer, Horner said. “It’s just another issue where we feel that the feds either don’t understand or they don’t completely care about the consequences,” he told True North.

As Ottawa undergoes consultation about its target, Horner said provincial agriculture ministers hoped the reduction was up for discussion. But, he said he was disappointed to learn from his federal counterpart Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau that the 30% target would not be reconsidered. The consultation process will only consider how Ottawa can achieve its objectives, Horner said. “They’re going to consult on the process, but they weren’t going to change their goal.” He said Ottawa doesn’t have a good “baseline” understanding of the work already being done to reduce emissions in the prairies. And “unless you’re going to look at emissions per unit of production, (Ottawa) is not being really upfront about the two different challenges that we face,” he said.

The first challenge is the demand to increase production “in a big way,” and the second is that farming is becoming less financially viable, especially with the ever-increasing carbon tax. All seven United Conservative Party (UCP) leadership candidates have also opposed the edict and promised to fight back, should they be elected Premier in October. In the Netherlands, farmers have been in the streets for weeks protesting strict emission targets. [..] Now, the head of one of Canada’s premier agricultural groups is warning that strict domestic emissions targets could spur a similar reaction from the industry. “But, you know, all I can say is, if you push farmers back right up against the wall where their livelihood is at stake and it’s a direct result of government overreach and non science based policies, then, who knows what could happen?”

Dutch farmer
https://twitter.com/i/status/1553539740271464449

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“Notably, none of Pfizer’s profits come from free market activity.”

Pfizer Posts Record Profits On Taxpayer-funded, Liability-free Products (Sch.)

It’s the most expensive “free” shot of all time. Pfizer’s Q2 earnings numbers parallel that of a top 5 global energy company. Of course, the slight difference here is that energy companies actually provide essential services for human flourishing, while Pfizer provides, well, government-backed snake oil. This quarter, the drug company posted a total revenue of $27.7 billion, up 46.5% from $18.9 billion the same period of last year. Net income is up 78% to $9.9 billion this quarter, from $5.5 billion in Q2 of 2021. While many Americans are struggling to put food on the table, Pfizer’s taxpayer-supplied profits almost doubled year over year. Notably, none of Pfizer’s profits come from free market activity.


More than half of all Pfizer sales, and all of its profits, come from its expired mRNA gene therapy injections and Paxlovid. The outfit has fully transformed into a COVID-19 company. Without COVID Mania, the rest of Pfizer’s product line would see the pharma giant without any income this year. Business is booming for the taxpayer-funded, liability-free drug company. Just last month, the Biden Administration signed a deal with Pfizer that hiked the price of more than 50% extra per dose for Pfizer’s next batch of mRNA shots. It’s a truly stunning outcome for a company that once claimed to have produced the cure for the coronavirus, but has in reality supplied an ineffective gene therapy with a massive side effect profile.

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Thinking about this. What about anteaters etc.? Many reptiles eat insects, and they’re not birds.

 

 

 

 


Huxley in the 1930s

 

 

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