Jun 182022
 


Paul Ranson Apple tree with red fruit 1902

 

Putin Claims New World Order, Blasts The West For ‘Insane’ Sanctions (ABC/AP)
Putin Says Sanctions Cost EU $400BN, Warns Of Severe Fertilizer Shortage (ZH)
Biden Told Secretaries Of Defense And State To Tone It Down (NBC)
Two Awkward Biden Moments Draw Online Scrutiny (JTN)
Macron Bends to Pressure, Now Says Ukraine ‘Must Win’ War With Russia (Celente)
Pro-Ukrainian, but Anti-Nazi (Batiushka)
How Low Can You Go? (Jim Kunstler)
Last Tango in Washington? (Brenner)
The Ukrainian Endgame: An Imperfect Peace Is Better Than Endless War (Bandow)
US Drone Sale To Ukraine Hits Snag (R.)
Stephen Colbert Staffers At House Office Charged With Illegal Entry (Fox)
Hunter Biden’s ‘Troubling’ Connection With Big-Name Hollywood Lawyer Probed (ET)
Deflationary Tsunami On Deck: Tidal Wave Of Discounts And Crashing Prices (ZH)
Britain Orders Extradition Of Julian Assange To United States (ABC.au)

 

 

 

 

Never sick

 

 

 

 

Clare Daly

 

 

 

 

 

 

“..came to think of themselves as God’s own messengers on planet Earth..”

Putin Claims New World Order, Blasts The West For ‘Insane’ Sanctions (ABC/AP)

In one of Vladimir Putin’s most substantial addresses since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February, the Russian President used his nation’s pre-eminent investment conference as an opportunity to lash out against his Western enemies. After a lengthy denunciation of countries that he claims want to weaken the Russian state with “reckless and insane” sanctions, President Putin used the stage at the St Petersburg International Economic Forum to lambaste the United States. “[The United States] declared victory in the Cold War and later came to think of themselves as God’s own messengers on planet Earth,” he said. In his 73-minute speech, he also said Russia was taking its place in a New World Order in which rules would be set by “strong and sovereign states”.


After sending troops into Ukraine in February, Russia came under a wide array of international sanctions, with hundreds of foreign companies also suspending operations or pulling out of the country entirely. But Mr Putin said these attempts to damage the Russian economy “didn’t work”. “Russian enterprises and government authorities worked in a composed and professional manner,” he said. “We’re normalising the economic situation. We stabilised the financial markets, the banking system, the trade system.” While Russia’s projected inflation rate has fallen marginally, Mr Putin conceded that the current projected annual rate of 16.7 per cent is still too high. Mr Putin also vehemently defended his country’s actions in Ukraine, as Russia has contended that its neighbour posed a threat due its desire to join the NATO military alliance.

Putin Spief

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From the PR team: “We all know that Ukrainians are ready to die for the European perspective. We want them to live with us the European dream.”

Putin Says Sanctions Cost EU $400BN, Warns Of Severe Fertilizer Shortage (ZH)

Ukraine just got a big boost for its EU membership bid on Friday, with the 27-member nation bloc’s executive giving full support for its candidate status. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced for the first time that the commission recommends “that Ukraine is given candidate status. This is of course on the understanding that the country will carry out a number of further reforms.” She said further while speaking from Brussels, “In the view of the Commission, Ukraine has clearly demonstrated the country’s aspiration and the country’s determination to live up to European values and standards.”

Von der Leyen included further: “We all know that Ukrainians are ready to die for the European perspective. We want them to live with us the European dream.” “Yes, Ukraine should be welcomed as a candidate country — this is based on the understanding that good work has been done but important work also remains to be done,” von der Leyen said. The day prior, on Thursday, French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi traveled to Kiev by train where they delivered a unified and “strong signal of support” to Ukraine amid the Russian invasion. They publicly backed Ukraine’s path to the EU, urging “immediate EU candidate status.”

[..] Russian President Vladimir Putin in statements issued the same day as von der Leyen’s EU candidacy preliminary approval announcement stressed the growing ‘cost’ to Europe over its intransigent pro-Ukraine position and anti-Russia sanctions. He estimated that the European Union will incur “losses of at least $400 billion” due to its multiple waves of sanctions imposed on Moscow thus far. He once again rejected responsibility for the global economic downturn, stating instead that inflation, energy costs and food crisis are all linked to the West’s policies. He further predicted a potentially disastrous development for the global food supply, already under threat, according to news wires:

“Putin predicted the fertilizer shortage could push food prices even higher, adding that Russia could boost its exports of fertilizer and grain. He also claimed that “gloomy forecasts” about the state of the Russian economy did not come true and that his government has successfully stopped the rise of domestic inflation.”

Read more …

Back in April.

Biden Told Secretaries Of Defense And State To Tone It Down (NBC)

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and Secretary of State Antony Blinken had taken off on separate flights from southeastern Poland after their risky, high-stakes visit to Kyiv when they were conferenced into a phone call from President Joe Biden. During their whirlwind April trip, Austin appeared to expand the U.S. goals in Ukraine, saying publicly that the administration wanted the Ukrainians to win the war against Russia, not just defend themselves, and that the U.S. hoped to weaken Russia to the extent that it could not launch another unprovoked invasion. Blinken had publicly aligned himself with the remarks. Now Biden wanted to discuss the mounting headlines that resulted. Biden thought the secretaries had gone too far, according to multiple administration officials familiar with the call.

On the previously unreported conference call, as Austin flew to Germany and Blinken to Washington, the president expressed concern that the comments could set unrealistic expectations and increase the risk of the U.S. getting into a direct conflict with Russia. He told them to tone it down, said the officials. “Biden was not happy when Blinken and Austin talked about winning in Ukraine,” one of them said. “He was not happy with the rhetoric.” The secretaries explained that Austin’s comments had been misconstrued, another senior administration official said. But the displeasure Biden initially conveyed during that phone call, the officials said, reflected his administration’s belief that despite Ukrainian forces’ unexpected successes early on, the war would ultimately head in the direction it is now in two months later: a protracted conflict in which Russia continues to make small and steady advances.

U.S. officials are increasingly concerned that the trajectory of the war in Ukraine is untenable and are quietly discussing whether President Volodymyr Zelenskyy should temper his hard-line public position that no territory will ever be ceded to Russia as part of an agreement to end the war, according to seven current U.S. officials, former U.S. officials and European officials. Some officials want Zelenskyy to “dial it back a little bit,” as one of them put it, when it comes to telegraphing his red lines on ending the war. But the issue is fraught given that Biden is adamant about the U.S. not pressuring the Ukrainians to take steps one way or another. His administration’s position has been that any decision about how and on what terms to end the war is for Ukraine to decide.

“We are not pressuring them to make concessions, as some Europeans are. We would never ask them to cede territory,” one U.S. official said. “We are planning for a long war. We intend to prepare the American people for that, and we are prepared to ask Congress for more money.”

Read more …

“A staggering 47% of responders “strongly” disapproved of his performance.”

Two Awkward Biden Moments Draw Online Scrutiny (JTN)

Amid reports of record low approval ratings for his performance in office, President Joe Biden drew online scrutiny for two awkward moments which have fueled renewed concerns over his fitness to lead. On Thursday, Biden offered somewhat blunt condolences for the passing of Jo-Ann Stores CFO Matt Susz, who died suddenly the day before. In a White House speech addressing efforts to curb inflation, Biden ripped international shipping companies but paused briefly to address the head of the company, saying “and by the way, my sympathies to your family of your CFO, who dropped dead very unexpectedly.”

The ungentle “dropped dead” description of Susz’s death, prompted a torrent of jokes and criticism with many Twitter users disapproving of Biden’s tone and word choice while others made references to oft-repeated concerns that the president may be experiencing mental deterioration. In a Friday episode, first lady Jill Biden abruptly yanked her husband away from reporters as he attempted to answer questions about rising inflation. The Bidens, and first cat Willow, were on their way to their home state of Delaware for the long weekend. “It should not be this high,” he said to reporters, per the New York Post. “They’re making exorbitant profits, number one. Number two, I’ve contacted them, my team has, to ask what their plans are and to give any suggestions they have.”

“Number three, I think we’re going to be in a position where we’re gonna,” he continued before his wife pulled him toward the plane, firmly stating “we gotta go!” The Friday episode also attracted a flurry of mockery, with commenters taking the first lady’s assertive role in the moment as evidence of the presidents “cognitive issues.” Others took issue with Biden’s routine departures from Washington to his home state. Biden’s approval rating stood at 39% on Friday, per a USA TODAY/Suffolk poll. A staggering 47% of responders “strongly” disapproved of his performance.

Biden oil

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“Any world leader who does not vow complete loyalty to Zelensky’s effort to win back every inch of his country is met by anger in the Western media..”

Macron Bends to Pressure, Now Says Ukraine ‘Must Win’ War With Russia (Celente)

French President Emmanuel Macron on Thursday passed the litmus test during a high-profile meeting with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in Kyiv when he told reporters that Ukraine must defeat Russia in its war. Macron was joined by Italy’s Prime Minister Mario Draghi and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz. The three took an 11′-hour train ride to Kyiv. They were also joined by Romanian President Klaus Iohannis. “We saw a devastated city and traces of barbarism. And also the heroism of Ukrainian men and women who stopped the Russian army when it went to Kyiv. Ukraine is resisting. She must be able to win,” Macron said after a a tour of Irpin. The French president came bearing gifts. He promised Ukraine six massive truck-mounted artillery guns so “Ukraine alone can decide its fate.”

Any world leader who does not vow complete loyalty to Zelensky’s effort to win back every inch of his country is met by anger in the Western media that has become nothing more than mouthpieces for governments that hate Russia. Macron felt the wrath when he said, “We must not humiliate Russia so that the day when the fighting stops we can build an exit ramp through diplomatic means. I am convinced that it is France’s role to be a mediating power.” Dmitro Kuleba, the Ukrainian foreign minister, took to Twitter at the time and posted, “Calls to avoid humiliation of Russia can only humiliate France and every other country that would call for it.” Even after the visit by the four European leaders on Thursday, Ukrainian leaders still insisted on not giving up an inch of territory.

Luhansk Gov. Serhiy Haidai told the Associated Press that the visit would not yield progress if the leaders ask Ukraine to sign a peace treaty with Russia that involves giving up territory. “I am sure that our president, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, is not going to make concessions and trade our territories. If someone wants to stop Russia by giving them territories, Germany has Bavaria, Italy has Tuscany, the French can concede Provence, for instance,” he said.


It’s the little people!

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Batiushka is an interesting writer. Here (s)he takes things a step further. Can we follow?

Pro-Ukrainian, but Anti-Nazi (Batiushka)

The problem has never been one of Ukrainians. The problem has always been that of the spiritual disease of Nazism. And that is what it is – a spiritual disease. Once the soul of the Ukraine has been liberated from this disease, in other words, once it has been denazified, a New Ukraine will be born. It may well take the form of a Protectorate centred around Kiev and speak a mixture of Ukrainian with Russian and Surzhyk (Ukrainian Russian). It will have secure borders and its people will be patriotic Ukrainians, not in some racist way that denigrates others, but in a positive way that respects others. Once freed of parasitic oligarchs and corruption, the naturally rich New Ukraine could have a brilliant future and take a positive part in the Concert of the Nations.

Once it has been understood that there is no problem with the Ukraine or Ukrainians, but only with Nazism, there may take place other Special Operations in other parts of the world. China may soon launch an Operation in Taiwan to free the ethnic Chinese there from the Nazism of its US-appointed elite. As for Russia, it has not yet finished the job in the Ukraine, where the task is constantly being extended because the Nazi West keeps sending long-range missiles and artillery to Kiev. As long as these weapons are in use, firing on Donetsk or anywhere else in liberated territory, the war will be extended and continue. Russia may physically have to liberate the whole country, mobilising more forces beyond the small expeditionary force it originally sent.

And then if Western aggression continues, it may have to launch other operations in Moldova and the Baltics in order to liberate those peoples too from NATO Nazism, from their corrupt US-appointed elites and EU exploitation. It may have to rebuild them, so that their peoples, economic refugees from corruption living now in Western Europe, can gratefully come home. Beyond that, as regards Western Europe in general, it too will surely one day find itself liberated one way or another from transatlantic tyranny and threats, safe under the Russian security and nuclear umbrella. Someone must defend Western Europe from the threats which for the moment are still coming from outside Afro-Eurasia, which is 86% of the world. Only Russia can do that. Russian troops once liberated Berlin and Paris. Will it have to happen again and maybe this time be extended to include Rome, Madrid and London?

Read more …

“..our Ukraine project “to weaken Russia” brought on an epochal shift in the balance of power to our enormous disadvantage.”

How Low Can You Go? (Jim Kunstler)

Lots of things are going south all at once: the stock markets and bond prices, Bitcoin is doing a vanishing act. The Colorado River reservoirs, Lake Powell and Lake Mead, are so low that, by September, both water and electricity may run out for a vast region that includes Phoenix, Las Vegas, and Southern California. The housing market is tanking (suburbia’s business model is broken). Whole herds of beef cattle roll over and die out on the range. Fertilizer is scarce. Food processing plants get torched by the dozen. Shortages loom. The oil-and-gas industry is getting killed four ways: 1) our stupid Russia sanctions queered longstanding global distribution arrangements; 2) the industry is starved for capital; 3) depletion is seriously kicking in; and 4) “Joe Biden” and the knuckleheads running the EU countries are trying to kill it so as to usher in a Green New Deal that just doesn’t pencil-out.

The car dealers have no new cars on their lots, and pretty soon they’ll run out of decent used cars — which, these days, are often priced higher than the non-existent new cars. How’s that for a business model? Plus, the financially beaten-up middle-class can’t afford cars in either case, and increasingly can’t qualify for car loans. The airline industry reels with a sucking chest wound due to a pilot shortage (thanks to vaxx mandates) and the high cost of jet fuel. The trucking industry’s business model is also broken with diesel fuel over six dollars a gallon — the cost of delivery exceeds the value of the cargo. America runs on trucks and if they stop running, so does everything else. Replacement parts are growing scarce for every mechanical device in the land. It’s getting harder to fix anything that’s broken.

“Joe Biden’s” proxy war against Russia in Ukraine isn’t working out. It was flamboyantly stupid from the get-go. We deliberately broke the Minsk agreements for a cease-fire in the Donbas to goad the Russians into action. NATO didn’t have the troops or the political mojo to back up its US-inspired bluster. Our financial warfare blew back in our faces and actually benefited the Russian economy and its currency, the ruble. The billions of dollars in weapons we’re sending into the war are easily interdicted in transport, or else are getting loose in a world of non-state maniacs ranging from the Taliban to al Qaeda to drug cartels. Meanwhile, Russia steadfastly grinds out a victory on-the-ground that will leave it in control of the Black Sea and will reveal the USA’s lost capacity to impose its will around the world. In other words, our Ukraine project “to weaken Russia” brought on an epochal shift in the balance of power to our enormous disadvantage.

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“..you are stuck with the albatross of a truncated, bankrupt Ukraine hung around your neck.”

Last Tango in Washington? (Brenner)

Reality has a way of catching up to us. Sometimes it comes via a sudden shock — Sputnik or Tet. Sometimes it creeps up incrementally — as in Ukraine with each thousand round Russian artillery barrage and the steady rise of the ruble now 25 percent higher than at the onset of the crisis. Dim the lights, the party’s almost over. But that is not the end of the affair. Whatever the exact outcomes, there is no going back to the status quo ante — the world, especially Europe, has changed in fundamental respects. Moreover, it has changed in ways diametrically opposite to what was desired and anticipated. The West has been inhabiting a fanciful world that could exist only in our imaginations. Many remain stranded in that self-deluded mirage. The more that we have invested in that fantasy world, the harder we find it to exit and to make the adjustment — intellectual, emotional, behavioral.

[..] Necessity is the mother of invention — or so it is said. However, grasping what is “necessary” can be a very slippery business. An actual recasting of how one views a problematic situation normally is a last resort. Experience and history tell us that, as do behavioral experiments. The psychology of perceived necessity is complex. Adversity or threat in and of itself does not trigger improvisation. Even the survival instinct does not always spark innovation. Denial, then avoidance, are normally the first, sequential reactions when facing adversity in trying to reach an objective or to satisfy a recognized interest. A strong bias favors the reiteration of a standard repertoire of responses.

True innovation tends to occur only in extremis; and even then, behavioral change is more likely to begin with minor adjustments of established thinking and behavior at the margins rather than modification of core beliefs and patterns of action. Those truths underscore the American dilemma as the Ukraine venture turns sour on the battlefield and your enemy is faring far better than expected while your friends and allies are faring far worse. Russia has blunted everything thrown at them – to the shock of Western planners. Every assumption underpinning their scorched-earth assault on the Russian economy has proven mistaken. A dismal record of analytical error even by C.I.A. and think tank standards.

Off-the-charts forecasts on the country’s economy, and the global impact of sanctions, crippled Washington’s plan from the outset. Tactical initiatives of a military nature have proven equally futile; another 1,000 vintage Javelins with dead battery packs will not rescue the Ukrainian army in the Donbass. So, you are stuck with the albatross of a truncated, bankrupt Ukraine hung around your neck. There is nothing that you can do to cancel these givens — except a direct, perhaps suicidal test of force with Russia. Or, perhaps, a retaliatory challenge elsewhere. The latter is not readily available — for geographic reasons and because the West already has expended its arsenal of economic and political weaponry.

Read more …

Doug Bandow is a Senior Fellow at the Cato Institute and a former Special Assistant to President Ronald Reagan.

The Ukrainian Endgame: An Imperfect Peace Is Better Than Endless War (Bandow)

For good reason, then, Americans worry about deepening US involvement in the Russo-Ukrainian war. While it is unsurprising that Kyiv and its Washington factotums advocate going all in, even risking escalation of the conflict, doing so is not in this nation’s interests. Unfortunately, President Joe Biden’s recent article in the New York Time did little to ease public concerns. Especially his promise not to “pressure the Ukrainian government – in private or public – to make any territorial concessions.” The US and Europe should focus on ending, not winning, the war. The longer the conflict goes, the more it will devastate Ukraine and undermine the Ukrainian state. The economic harm to the allies and beyond also will grow, weakening support for Kyiv.


An American attempt to carry Ukraine to victory is more likely to encourage Putin to double down, perhaps even using nuclear weapons, than meekly yield. Washington’s goal should not be to save the Russian dictator from personal humiliation, which retired diplomat Dan Fried deemed “risible,” but to forestall Putin from engaging in dangerous escalation to prevent personal humiliation. Life is unfair, President Jimmy Carter once observed. That is especially true when it comes to international affairs. In a perfect world Ukraine would recover its territory, including that seized in 2014, collect reparations from Moscow, and frame Putin’s written apology for invading. However, none of these should be Washington’s objective. The US should promote a stable, peaceful settlement, one that keeps the Pandora’s Box of nuclear war closed.

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“..reviewed higher up the chain of command at the Pentagon..”

US Drone Sale To Ukraine Hits Snag (R.)

The Biden administration’s plan to sell four large, armable drones to Ukraine has been paused on the fear its sophisticated surveillance equipment might fall into enemy hands, according to two people familiar with the matter. The technical objection to the sale was raised during a deeper review by the Pentagon’s Defense Technology Security Administration charged with keeping high value technology safe from enemy hands. Previously the plan, which has been circulating since March, had been approved by the White House, three people said. The plan to sell Ukraine four MQ-1C Gray Eagle drones that can be armed with Hellfire missiles for battlefield use against Russia was first reported by Reuters earlier in June.


The objection to the export of the drones arose due to concerns the radar and surveillance equipment on the drones could create a security risk for the United States if it fell into Russian hands. The sources said this consideration had been overlooked in the initial review but came up in meetings at the Pentagon late last week. “Technology security reviews are a standard practice for the transfer of U.S. defense articles to all international partners. All cases are reviewed individually on their own merit. Through the established process, national security concerns are elevated to the appropriate approving authority,” said Pentagon spokesperson Sue Gough. The decision on whether or not to continue with the deal is now being reviewed higher up the chain of command at the Pentagon, but the timing of any decision is uncertain, one of the people a U.S. official said on condition of anonymity.

Read more …

Adam Schiff did it.

Stephen Colbert Staffers At House Office Charged With Illegal Entry (Fox)

The U.S. Capitol Police arrested a group of staffers with CBS’s “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert” after they allegedly illegally entered a U.S. House of Representatives office building on Thursday night, Fox News has learned. The group of seven people were arrested in the Longworth House Office Building after being escorted out of the Jan. 6 committee hearing earlier in the day because they did not have proper press credentials, according to sources. The same group resurfaced later on Thursday night after the Capitol complex was closed to public visitors and Fox News is told that they took videos and pictures around the offices of two Republican members of Congress, Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy R-Calif. and Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo.

A senior source in the U.S House of Representatives told Fox News that seven individuals associated with Stephen Colbert’s show were arrested. The group was unescorted and charged with illegal entry to House office buildings after hours. Fox News is told that the “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert” team applied to get press credentials for the Jan. 6 hearing, but the House Radio/TV Gallery rejected the request because they are not considered “news.” The issue didn’t go to the Radio/TV Correspondents Association, which usually handles credentialing. In addition to a regular Capitol Hill press pass, a special “overlay” is required for members of the press who want to be in the room for the Jan. 6 Committee hearings.


Members of Colbert’s team could have been in House office buildings if they were invited, which they were. Fox News is told that Colbert’s team conducted interviews earlier on Thursday with members of the Jan. 6 Committee, including Reps. Adam Schiff, D-Calif. and Stephanie Murphy, D-Fla. They also interviewed Rep. Jake Auchincloss, D-Mass. [..] “On June 16, 2022, at approximately 8:30 p.m., U.S. Capitol Police (USCP) received a call for a disturbance in the Longworth House Office Building. Responding officers observed seven individuals, unescorted and without Congressional ID, in a sixth-floor hallway. The building was closed to visitors, and these individuals were determined to be a part of a group that had been directed by the USCP to leave the building earlier in the day,” the statement says. “They were charged with Unlawful Entry. This is an active criminal investigation, and may result in additional criminal charges after consultation with the U.S. Attorney.”

Tucker Colbert

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“We are investigating the domestic and international business dealings of President Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, to determine whether these activities compromise U.S. national security and President Biden’s ability to lead with impartiality..”

Hunter Biden’s ‘Troubling’ Connection With Big-Name Hollywood Lawyer Probed (ET)

The ranking member of the House’s principal oversight committee has launched a probe into a Hollywood lawyer’s “sudden patronage” of Hunter Biden allegedly involving financial and pro-bono legal support. “We are investigating the domestic and international business dealings of President Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, to determine whether these activities compromise U.S. national security and President Biden’s ability to lead with impartiality,” Rep. James Comer (R-Ky.), ranking member of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform, wrote to Hollywood attorney Kevin Morris on behalf of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform in a letter dated June 14.

“Your sudden patronage of the President’s son, enormous financial contributions to President Biden, and outsized role you are taking in defending against both congressional and criminal investigations raise serious concerns about whether you are providing in-kind contributions to President Biden’s re-election efforts,” Comer wrote. Morris is known for negotiating a $550 million licensing deal for the creators of “South Park” and has won a Tony award as a co-producer of the Broadway musical “The Book of Mormon.” His law firm has represented Hollywood celebrities including Chris Rock, Scarlett Johansson, and Matthew McConaughey. Comer’s letter came after a New York Times report in early May that alleged that Morris has taken on a “financier, confidant and would-be avenger” for the president’s son.

The latter is under federal investigation into his tax payments and alleged foreign deals with entities affiliated with the Chinese Communist Party, Russia, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine. According to Federal Election Commission (FEC) records, Morris donated $2,800 to Joe Biden’s campaign “Biden for President” in October 2019, and a total of $55,000 in 2020 to the American Bridge 21st Century Political Action Committee, which supported Joe Biden in the 2020 presidential election. The New York Times reported that these donations occurred before Morris met and developed a relationship with the president’s son. According to Comer, the oversight committee Republicans are “particularly troubled” in seeing Morris’s alleged role in “attempting to personally shield Hunter Biden from congressional and criminal investigation.”

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You won’t know what hit you.

Deflationary Tsunami On Deck: Tidal Wave Of Discounts And Crashing Prices (ZH)

Three weeks ago, we showed readers what happens when the infamous “Bullwhip effect” reversal takes place by presenting the unprecedented surge in the “Inventory to Sales” ratio for a broad range of US retailers covering the furniture, home furnishings and appliances, building materials and garden equipment, and a category known as “other general merchandise,” which includes Walmart and Target. Since then, this ratio has only gotten even more extended, and as shown below it is now at the highest level since the bursting of the dot com bubble! What does this mean for retailers and the price of goods? Three weeks ago we said “Think: widespread inventory liquidations” and added…

To be sure, not every product will see its price cut: commodities, whose bullwhip effect take much longer to manifest itself, usually lasting several years in either direction, are only just starting to see their price cycle higher. However, other products – like those carried by the Walmarts and Targets of the world – are about to see a deflationary plunge the likes of which we have not seen since the global financial crisis as retailers commence a voluntary destocking wave the likes of which have not been seen in over a decade. Today both Wall Street and the mainstream media have caught up, with both predicting unprecedented deflationary price cuts in the coming weeks.

We start with Morgan Stanley’s bearish strategist Michael Wilson, who in his latest bearish weekly note (available to pro subs) focused on shrinking margins in general, and on retailer discounting in particular, and wrote that while there is a modest pick up in over sales, the far more concerning issue is that “inventory across the sector is up about 30% YOY and sales growth is up about 0% YOY translating to approximately 30% YOY of excess inventory” and while mark down/margin pressure did not hit in 1Q it should hit June/July. Indeed, “store checks show that aggressive discounting has already started as of the Memorial Day holiday weekend. Discounting pressure could accelerate through July.” And since more retailers are now discounting, “companies are having to offer even bigger discounts to compel consumers to buy, and it is a race to the bottom in margins in order to clear through inventory.”

It gets much worse, however, because courtesy of the delayed nature of the bullwhip effect, Morgan Stanley thinks it will be some time before retailers can cut back on forward inventory orders! Companies are no longer in a position to order 6 months in advance because of delays in the supply chain, and are currently working with about an 8 month lead time. Shockingly, this means decisions today to cut forward orders could begin to eliminate the inventory problem in 1Q23, but not likely before then.

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“The elected Prime Minister stated that it’s time for Julian to come home..”

Britain Orders Extradition Of Julian Assange To United States (ABC.au)

The British government has ordered the extradition of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange to the United States, but WikiLeaks said it would appeal against the ruling. Home Secretary Priti Patel made the decision after Mr Assange was denied a Supreme Court appeal back in March. That case related to Mr Assange’s physical and mental health, and the US government won after offering assurances he would not be held in solitary confinement. The Home Office said in a statement: “The UK courts have not found that it would be oppressive, unjust or an abuse of process to extradite Mr Assange. “Nor have they found that extradition would be incompatible with his human rights, including his right to a fair trial and to freedom of expression, and that whilst in the US he will be treated appropriately, including in relation to his health.”

The decision is a big moment in Mr Assange’s years-long battle to avoid facing trial in the US — though not necessarily the end of the tale. The 50-year-old Australian still has 14 days to appeal against his extradition based on issues like freedom of speech, arguing the espionage charges against him are politically motivated. “Today is not the end of the fight. It is only the beginning of a new legal battle,” Mr Assange’s wife Stella said. Ms Assange also called for Australian Prime Minister Albanese to apply some pressure. “Our expectation as a family is the Australian government will do whatever it takes to get him home,” she said. The Australian federal government says it will continue to offer consular assistance to Mr Assange.


“We will continue to convey our expectations that Mr Assange is entitled to due process, humane and fair treatment, access to proper medical care, and access to his legal team,” said a joint statement released late on Friday night from Foreign Affairs Minister Penny Wong and Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus. “The Australian government has been clear in our view that Mr Assange’s case has dragged on for too long and that it should be brought to a close. “We will continue to express this view to the governments of the United Kingdom and [the] United States.” Independent MP Andrew Wilkie has labelled the decision by the UK government to green-light the extradition as an “outrageous betrayal of rule of law, media freedom and human rights”. “The elected Prime Minister stated that it’s time for Julian to come home,” Mr Wilkie said, “enough is enough, that he couldn’t see what was served by Julian remaining in prison.

Stella Moris

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Kamala Task Force

 

 

 

 

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Jun 022022
 
 June 2, 2022  Posted by at 8:37 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , ,  72 Responses »


Giovanni Bellini The transfiguration c1490

 

Dear Friends, Sorry to Announce a Genocide (Naomi Wolf)
Is Monkeypox a Smokescreen for Global Health Power Grab? (CHD)
CDC Director Issues Alert on Pfizer’s COVID-19 Pill (ET)
The War in Ukraine May Be Impossible to Stop. Blame the US (NYT)
The Secret Ukrainian Military Programs (Thierry Meyssan)
America, Meet Your New Dictator-in-Chief (Whitehead)
Biden Aims to Fight Russia to the Last Ukrainian, Moscow Says (Celente)
Russia And The West Compete To Secure Safe Passage For Ukraine’s Grain (G.)
Milley: Using Military to Open Ukrainian Ports Would Be ‘High Risk’ (Antiwar)
Janet Yellen Pretends She Got It Wrong on Inflation, She Did Not (CTH)
John Durham Lost Because He Treated The FBI As A Dupe (McCarthy)

 

 

 

 

Tucker What is a Woman

 

 

Twitty

 

 

 

 

“reactogenicity”

Dear Friends, Sorry to Announce a Genocide (Naomi Wolf)

I’ve been silent for some weeks. Forgive me. The truth is: I’ve been rendered almost speechless — or the literary equivalent of that — because recently I’ve had the unenviable task of trying to announce to the world that indeed, a genocide — or what I’ve called, clumsily but urgently, a “baby die-off” — is underway. The WarRoom/DailyClout Pfizer Documents Research Volunteers, a group of 3000 highly credentialled doctors, RNs, biostatisticians, medical fraud investigators, lab clinicians and research scientists, have been turning out report after report, as you may know, to tell the world what is in the 55,000 internal Pfizer documents which the FDA had asked a court to keep under wraps for 75 years. By court order, these documents were forcibly disclosed. And our experts are serving humanity by reading through these documents and explaining them in lay terms. You can find all of the Volunteers’ reports on DailyClout.io.

The lies revealed are stunning. The WarRoom/DailyClout Volunteers have confirmed: that Pfizer (and thus the FDA) knew by December 2020 that the MRNA vaccines did not work — that they “waned in efficacy” and presented “vaccine failure.” One side effect of getting vaccinated, as they knew by one month after the mass 2020 rollout, was “COVID.” Pfizer knew in May of 2021 that 35 minors’ hearts had been damaged a week after MRNA injection — but the FDA rolled out the EUA for teens a month later anyway, and parents did not get a press release from the US government about heart harms til August of 2021, after thousands of teens were vaccinated.

Pfizer (and thus the FDA; many of the documents say “FDA: CONFIDENTIAL” at the lower boundary) knew that, contrary to what the highly paid spokesmodels and bought-off physicians were assuring people, the MRNA, spike protein and lipid nanoparticles did not stay in the injection site in the deltoid, but rather went, within 48 hours, into the bloodstream, from there to lodge in the liver, spleen, adrenals, lymph nodes, and, if you are a woman, in the ovaries. Pfizer (and thus the FDA) knew that the Moderna vaccine had 100 mcg of MRNA, lipid nanoparticles and spike protein, which was more than three times the 30 mcg of the adult Pfizer dose; the company’s internal documents show a higher rate of adverse events with the 100 mcg dose, so they stopped experimenting with that amount internally due to its “reactogenicity” — Pfizer’s words — but no one told all of the millions of Americans who all got the first and second 100 mcg Moderna dose, and the boosters.

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A 1971 photo.

Is Monkeypox a Smokescreen for Global Health Power Grab? (CHD)

On May 24, BBC News reported the following on the monkeypox outbreak: “More than 100 cases of the virus — which causes a rash and a fever — have been confirmed in Europe, the Americas and Australia… The virus has now been detected in 16 countries outside Africa… a top EU health official has warned that some groups of people may be more at risk than others… Dr. Ammon suggested that countries should review the availability of the smallpox vaccine which is also effective against monkeypox.” Has the BBC reverted to its past reputation as a balanced reporter of news? That would seem unlikely in the present circumstances. Especially when the BBC is partially funded by the Gates Foundation and it opts to use a Getty Images photo of an unconfirmed monkeypox case that may actually be smallpox.

The BBC News piece contained a powerful image of the arm and leg of a pox-covered child. Driven by concerns that this looks very much like smallpox (check out the UK Health Security Agency images [shown also in Fig 5B] which are closely associated with the Hospital for Tropical Diseases and you’ll get a more representative view of the clinical features of human monkeypox), I was keen to dig deeper. The Getty Images caption tells us: “BONDUA, LIBERIA – UNDATED: In this 1971 Center For Disease Control handout photo, monkeypox-like lesions are shown on the arm and leg of a female child in Bondua, Liberia. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said June 7 the viral disease monkeypox, thought to be spread by prairie dogs, has been detected in the Americas for the first time with about 20 cases reported in Wisconsin, Illinois, and Indiana. (Photo Courtesy of the CDC/Getty Images).”

We’ve been unable to find a place called Bondua in Liberia. There is however a Bondua in Sierra Leone. Is that what the CDC means? Isn’t it a bit like saying the case was reported from London in France — leaving everyone confused about place and country? Not quite, actually, as there is a London in France, just no Bondua in Liberia. You might think I’m splitting hairs. But such details are actually critically important when they’re being communicated to a worldwide audience that’s waiting with bated breath to understand the implications of yet another infectious disease outbreak. Sierra Leone did in fact boast the highest incidence of smallpox in the world between 1967 and 1968 and we’ve unearthed some genuine red flags as to the origin of this CDC/Getty Images photo.

By 1971, it appears smallpox had disappeared from Sierra Leone. And, as an add-on, contrary to what the vaccine PR machine likes to suggest, the historical record does not provide evidence that it was mass vaccination as part of the WHO’s Smallpox Eradication Program that caused infections to decline then disappear from Sierra Leone.

McCullough monkeypox

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Someone shut her up.

CDC Director Issues Alert on Pfizer’s COVID-19 Pill (ET)

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Rochelle Walensky warned that Pfizer’s COVID-19 pill Paxlovid can lead to a rebound in symptoms. “If you take Paxlovid, you might get symptoms again,” Walensky told CBS News on Tuesday. “We haven’t yet seen anybody who has returned with symptoms needing to go to the hospital. So, generally, a milder course.” Another researcher who is not affiliated with the CDC said that he has observed such a scenario. “People who experience rebound are at risk of transmitting to other people, even though they’re outside what people accept as the usual window for being able to transmit,” Dr. Michael Charness of the Veterans Administration Medical Center in Boston told CNN on Tuesday.


After a patient recovers from COVID-19, the aforementioned rebound has occurred between two and eight days later, according to the CDC. The agency, however, told CBS that the benefits of taking Paxlovid outweigh the risks of COVID-19, namely among those who are at a high risk of developing severe symptoms from the virus. About a week ago, the agency issued an alert to health care providers about the rebound, saying that patients who took Paxlovid either test positive for the virus after having tested negative or will experience COVID-19 symptoms. “A brief return of symptoms may be part of the natural history of SARS-CoV-2 infection in some persons, independent of treatment with Paxlovid and regardless of vaccination status,” the federal health agency said at the time.

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The New York Times is gradually shifting the narrative.

The War in Ukraine May Be Impossible to Stop. Blame the US (NYT)

In the Paris daily Le Figaro this month, Henri Guaino, a top adviser to Nicolas Sarkozy when he was president of France, warned that Europe’s countries, under the shortsighted leadership of the United States, were “sleepwalking” into war with Russia. Mr. Guaino was borrowing a metaphor that the historian Christopher Clark used to describe the origins of World War I. Naturally, Mr. Guaino understands that Russia is most directly to blame for the present conflict in Ukraine. It was Russia that massed its troops on the frontier last fall and winter and — having demanded from NATO a number of Ukraine-related security guarantees that NATO rejected — began the shelling and killing on Feb. 24.

But the United States has helped turn this tragic, local and ambiguous conflict into a potential world conflagration. By misunderstanding the war’s logic, Mr. Guaino argues, the West, led by the Biden administration, is giving the conflict a momentum that may be impossible to stop. He is right. In 2014 the United States backed an uprising — in its final stages a violent uprising — against the legitimately elected Ukrainian government of Viktor Yanukovych, which was pro-Russian. (The corruption of Mr. Yanukovych’s government has been much adduced by the rebellion’s defenders, but corruption is a perennial Ukrainian problem, even today.) Russia, in turn, annexed Crimea, a historically Russian-speaking part of Ukraine that since the 18th century had been home to Russia’s Black Sea Fleet.

One can argue about Russian claims to Crimea, but Russians take them seriously. Hundreds of thousands of Russian and Soviet fighters died defending the Crimean city of Sevastopol from European forces during two sieges — one during the Crimean War and one during World War II. In recent years, Russian control of Crimea has seemed to provide a stable regional arrangement: Russia’s European neighbors, at least, have let sleeping dogs lie. But the United States never accepted the arrangement. On Nov. 10, 2021, the United States and Ukraine signed a “charter on strategic partnership” that called for Ukraine to join NATO, condemned “ongoing Russian aggression” and affirmed an “unwavering commitment” to the reintegration of Crimea into Ukraine.

That charter “convinced Russia that it must attack or be attacked,” Mr. Guaino wrote. “It is the ineluctable process of 1914 in all its terrifying purity.” This is a faithful account of the war that President Vladimir Putin has claimed to be fighting. “There were constant supplies of the most modern military equipment,” Mr. Putin said at Russia’s annual Victory Parade on May 9, referring to the foreign arming of Ukraine. “The danger was growing every day.”

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Meyssan has a entire library of articles on the topic here.

The Secret Ukrainian Military Programs (Thierry Meyssan)

Throughout this series of articles, which began a month and a half before the war in Ukraine, I have been developing the idea that the Straussians, the small group of Leo Strauss followers in the US administration, were planning a confrontation against Russia and China. However, in the tenth episode of this series, I related how the Azov regiment became the paramilitary pillar of the Ukrainian Banderists by referring to the visit of Senator John McCain to it in 2016 [1]. However, the latter is not a Straussian, but was advised by Robert Kagan during his presidential election campaign in 2008, a central thinker among the Straussians [2], even though he has always cautiously denied his membership in this sect.

A video, filmed during John McCain’s visit to Ukraine in 2016, has resurfaced. It shows the senator accompanied by his colleague and friend, Senator Lindsey Graham, and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko. The two Americans are traveling on a Senate mission. But McCain is also the president of the IRI (International Republican Institute), the Republican branch of the NED (National Endowment for Democracy). It is known that the IRI has conducted about 100 seminars for the leaders of Ukrainian political parties classified as right-wing, including for the Banderists. The senators are addressing officers of the Azov regiment, the main Banderist paramilitary formation. This should come as no surprise. John McCain has always maintained that the United States should rely on the enemies of its enemies, whoever they may be. Thus, he has publicly claimed responsibility for his contacts with Daesh against the Syrian Arab Republic.

In this video, Senators Lindsey Graham and John McCain assure that the United States will give all the weapons necessary for them to succeed in defeating Russia. This video, I repeat, was recorded six years before the Russian army entered Ukraine. The two senators are investing their interlocutors with a mission. They do not see them as mercenaries who are paid, but as proxies who will fight for the unipolar world to the death. Shortly afterwards, President Poroshenko, who had attended the meeting in battle dress, changed the badge of his secret service, the SBU. It is now an owl holding a sword directed against Russia with the motto “The wise will rule over the stars”. It is clear that the Ukrainian state apparatus was preparing for war against Russia on behalf of the United States.

Three years later, on September 5, 2019, the Rand Corporation organized a meeting in the US House of Representatives to explain its plan: to weaken Russia by forcing it to deploy in Kazakhstan, then in Ukraine and as far as Transnistria. I have explained at length in two previous articles that at the end of the Second World War the United States and the United Kingdom took over many Nazi leaders and Ukrainian Banderists to turn them against the USSR. They mothered these fanatics as soon as the USSR disappeared and used them against Russia. It remained to explore how they armed them.

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“..in the event of a national emergency, the COG directives give unchecked executive, legislative and judicial power to the president..”

America, Meet Your New Dictator-in-Chief (Whitehead)

America, meet your new dictator-in-chief. As the New York Times reports, “Newly disclosed documents have shed a crack of light on secret executive branch plans for apocalyptic scenarios—like the aftermath of a nuclear attack—when the president may activate wartime powers for national security emergencies.” The problem, of course, is that we have become a nation in a permanent state of emergency. Power-hungry and lawless, the government has weaponized one national crisis after another in order to expand its powers and justify all manner of government tyranny in the so-called name of national security.

The seeds of this present madness were sown almost two decades ago when George W. Bush stealthily issued two presidential directives that granted the president the power to unilaterally declare a national emergency, which is loosely defined as “any incident, regardless of location, that results in extraordinary levels of mass casualties, damage, or disruption severely affecting the U.S. population, infrastructure, environment, economy, or government functions.” Comprising the country’s Continuity of Government (COG) plan, these directives (National Security Presidential Directive 51 and Homeland Security Presidential Directive 20) provide a skeletal outline of the actions the president will take in the event of a “national emergency.”

Just what sort of actions the president will take once he declares a national emergency can barely be discerned from the barebones directives. However, one thing is clear: in the event of a national emergency, the COG directives give unchecked executive, legislative and judicial power to the president. The country would then be subjected to martial law by default, and the Constitution and the Bill of Rights would be suspended. Essentially, the president would become a dictator for life. It has happened already. As we have witnessed in recent years, that national emergency can take any form, can be manipulated for any purpose and can be used to justify any end goal—all on the say so of the president.

The emergency powers that we know about which presidents might claim during such states of emergency are vast, ranging from imposing martial law and suspending habeas corpus to shutting down all forms of communications, including implementing an internet kill switch, and restricting travel.

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“There is a risk that such equipment will be placed near Russia’s borders and Ukrainians will be able to strike at Russian cities. Such a situation is unacceptable and intolerable for us..”

Biden Aims to Fight Russia to the Last Ukrainian, Moscow Says (Celente)

Russia blasted the White House of provoking more war after President Joe Biden said that the U.S. will send advanced rocket systems to Ukraine that Moscow has called a “red line.” The Kremlin said the U.S. is adding “fuel to the fire.” “We know that the United States has been purposefully and meticulously adding fuel to the fire,” Dmitry Peskov, the Kremlin spokesman, said, ABC News reported. “The United States pursues the course towards fighting Russia to the last Ukrainian.” Joe Biden wrote an op-ed published in The New York Times late Tuesday that confirmed his decision to provide Ukrainian fighters with advanced rocket systems that can be reportedly outfitted with missiles capable of traveling about 200 miles. Kyiv stands to receive the American High Mobility Artillery Rocket System, or HIMARS, a source told the paper, in a separate article.

A senior administration official said Biden opted not to provide Ukraine with the rockets capable of traveling 200 miles. The system, as it stands now, is capable of striking targets up to 48 miles from the launch site. “Himars units carry one preloaded pod of six 227mm guided missiles (the M270 carries two pods), or one large pod loaded with an Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) tactical missile,” The Guardian reported. Ukrainian fighters could now, technically, line up near the border and fire into Russia. (The paper said the Biden administration was assured that these weapons will not be used to strike Russia and “the administration was comfortable with the assurances.’ But assurances go out the window when you’re surrounded.)

[..] Anatoly Antonov, a top Russian diplomat, on Saturday commented on reports that the Biden administration was considering sending these weapon systems. “There is a risk that such equipment will be placed near Russia’s borders and Ukrainians will be able to strike at Russian cities. Such a situation is unacceptable and intolerable for us,” he told a Russian news outlet, Newsweek reported. He continued, “We are calling for an end to the senseless and extremely risky pumping of weapons into the country. It is important to refrain from threats against us and claims of a military victory for Ukraine.”


Map of Areas that the MQ-1C Gray Eagle Drone can reach when launched from Major Ukrainian Airports

USA is planning to sell Ukraine 4 MQ-1C Gray Eagle Drones which have a range of 400 Km and can fly for over 30+ hours, and can carry up to 8 Hellfire Missiles

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Just lift the sanctions. Solved.

Russia And The West Compete To Secure Safe Passage For Ukraine’s Grain (G.)

In a game of diplomatic cat and mouse, Russia and the west are coming up with similar if sometimes competing ideas for how Ukraine’s badly needed grain can be given safe passage through the Black Sea and on to the world markets. They are also competing to win the battle for world opinion if the plans collapse. Both sides are busy diplomatically across Africa and the Middle East trying to portray their adversary as the culprit for spiralling food and fertiliser prices. Russia and Ukraine export more than a quarter of the world’s wheat, while Russia is the world’s top fertiliser exporter. The World Bank’s Fertiliser Price Index rose nearly 10% in the first quarter of 2022, to an all-time high in nominal terms.

Ukraine’s backlog of 20m tonnes of grain needs to be exported quickly to avoid a further explosion of food prices, and also to preserve the next Ukrainian harvest that currently cannot be sent to already full storage facilities. That is not possible due to the Russian naval blockade of the Black Sea port of Odesa, and Ukrainian floating mines planted to block the port from Russian attack. Russia, in return for lifting the blockade, wants any sanctions on its shipping and fertiliser products lifted. At issue is whether there is a deal to be done. In what is beginning to look like the main plan, the Russian foreign minister, Sergei Lavrov, has agreed to meet the Turkish president Erdogan but not until 8 June, over proposals for Turkey to de-mine Odesa and then escort grain ships through to the Bosphorous along a naval corridor.

Erdogan spoke with Vladimir Putin about the proposal on Monday, and according to the Turkish read-out, Putin was willing to cooperate, on conditions. Turkey, through the 1936 Montreux convention, is arbiter of sea traffic in and out of the Black Sea, and justifies its refusal as a Nato member to impose sanctions on Russia by pointing to this unique role. The Turkish foreign minister, Cavusoglu, said on Tuesday that food security was the most important question: “We are focusing on this. We are planning to establish a centre in Istanbul to observe the corridor.”

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Also known as: They couldn’t do it if they tried.

Milley: Using Military to Open Ukrainian Ports Would Be ‘High Risk’ (Antiwar)

Amid growing calls for naval intervention to open up Ukrainian ports for grain exports, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley said such an operation would amount to a “high risk military operation.” The West is blaming Russian ships for blocking grain exports from leaving Ukrainian ports, but there are other factors, including mines laid by Ukraine. Russia said last week that it cleared mines around Mariupol and that the Azov Sea port is now open to civil vessels. This week, Retired Adm. James Stavridis, a former supreme allied commander of NATO, suggested that naval vessels under the auspice of the UN or NATO could escort convoys of grain ships out of Ukraine.


Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba suggested on Tuesday that Ukraine was pushing for a UN convoy to open its ports. “Ukraine is working on an international UN-led operation with navies of partners ensuring a safe trade route with no security risks,” he wrote on Twitter. Milley said such a plan would be high risk due to the presence of Russian ships and mines in the waters. “You can take the grain out by truck or train, or you can take it out by sea. Right now, the sea lanes are blocked by mines and the Russian navy. In order to open up those sea lanes would require a very significant military effort,” Milley said. “It would be a high-risk military operation that would require significant levels of effort.”

Macgregor

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She follows the game plan.

Janet Yellen Pretends She Got It Wrong on Inflation, She Did Not (CTH)

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has more financial and analytical resources at her fingertips than thousand hedge funds combined. When Secretary Yellen claims today that she “got it wrong” about inflation, what she is doing is continuing the game of pretending; she’s positioning the administration as incompetent, not deliberate. The illusion of incompetence plays into the scheme of hiding the fact the administration is working through a purposeful strategy. In the game of pretending; and under the current circumstances; it is better to be seen as incompetent than recognized as working with malicious intent. This is the illusion behind Joe Biden’s usefulness.


This is also the organized pretending game within DC that too few people will accept or admit. The Treasury Secretary and Federal Reserve Chairman are not making mistakes, they are working on a specific agenda and economic plan. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell was not late to raise interest rates, he waited on purpose. He waited for the political reason of waiting until the triggered 2021 inflation spike cycled through the full calendar year. These are not monetary policy leaders making monetary policy mistakes. These are monetary policy political ideologues, carrying out a political agenda within the U.S. economy. This is part of what National Economic Council Chairman Brian Deese would call the “economic transition.”

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“If you don’t get the bureau’s role right, you’re apt to get the most consequential things wrong..”

John Durham Lost Because He Treated The FBI As A Dupe (McCarthy)

What was the role of the FBI? In the Russiagate probe, in which special counsel John Durham has been tasked with getting to the bottom of the Trump-Russia “collusion” farce, that is the key question. If you don’t get the bureau’s role right, you’re apt to get the most consequential things wrong. Durham has banked his investigation on the premise that the FBI was a victim — an innocent dupe manipulated by the wily Clinton campaign. On Tuesday, this misplaced faith led to the acquittal of Clinton lawyer Michael Sussmann. The irony abounds. A Washington, DC, jury found Sussmann not guilty of making a false statement to the bureau even though Durham’s team convincingly proved the falsity of the statement he made — namely, that in purveying derogatory information about Donald Trump, Sussmann was not representing any client, when in fact he was representing the Hillary Clinton campaign.

Moreover, although the acquittal will encourage Democrats and their legacy media allies in seeking to discredit Durham’s probe, the law enforcement shenanigans uncovered by the trial illustrate that the probe is essential. Nevertheless, the probe will come to naught, and accountability will remain a pipe dream, unless Durham gets the FBI’s role right. As I contended in “Ball of Collusion: The Plot to Rig an Election and Destroy a Presidency,” the outrage of the Trump-Russia “collusion” farce is that the law enforcement and intelligence apparatus of the United States government was put in the service of partisan politics — first to attempt to get Hillary Clinton elected president and, when that failed, to hamstring the Trump administration’s capacity to govern.

That is, what makes Russiagate a uniquely dangerous chapter in modern American history is the willful interference by powerful federal agencies in electoral politics. The real collusion was between the Clinton campaign and the Obama-era executive branch — particularly (but by no means exclusively) the FBI. Durham proceeded on a different theory. The culprits, by his lights, are the Clinton campaign and its operatives. We are to see the FBI not as colluding with the Clinton campaign, but as victimized by the Clinton campaign. The false-statement case against Sussmann is one of three indictments Durham has brought in more than three years of conducting his probe. In each one, the defendant is accused of duping the FBI, not collaborating with the FBI, in an effort to portray Trump as a Kremlin asset.

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Mar 242022
 


Vincent van Gogh Weaver 1884

 

Biden Says US Must Lead ‘New World Order,’ Lead it Where Exactly? (Celente)
Pentagon Drops Truth Bombs to Stave Off War With Russia (Lauria)
Putin’s Bombers Could Devastate Ukraine But He’s Holding Back (NW)
Sanctioning Russia Could Topple The West (Fazi)
WIll Poland Invade The Western Ukraine? (Saker)
Lavrov: Peacekeeping Effort Could Result In Direct Clash With NATO (JTN)
Ukraine Says Russia Is Holding Aid Workers Captive In Mariupol (JTN)
How Russia Got Stronger As Bidens And Clintons Got Richer (JTN)
The Death Of The Supreme Court Confirmation Process (Turley)
Anger Towards the Unvaccinated was Intentional Psychological Manipulation (NE)
“Dictatorship Of The Worst Kind” – Trudeau Lambasted In EU Parliament (TNC)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GPS
https://twitter.com/i/status/1506882331537248256

 

 


Nigeria: 206M people, only 4.4% fully vaxxed, zero deaths and 87 daily cases

 

 

The official government li(n)e

 

 

“Lead it?” Where? Down the crapper!”

Biden Says US Must Lead ‘New World Order,’ Lead it Where Exactly? (Celente)

What’s the big headline making the news last week? “BIDEN: AMERICA WILL LEAD NEW WORLD ORDER.” In his speech, President Joe Biden declared, “Now is the time where things are shifting. There’s going to be a new world order out there and we’ve got to lead it.” “Lead it?” Where? Down the crapper! America’s roads are rotted, bridges collapse, archaic subways and rail systems crumble, the middle class evaporates as 61 percent of Americans live paycheck to paycheck, people can’t afford to buy homes or afford to pay rent, etc., etc. Q. And who is the “we’ve” that “got to lead it”? A. The Republican and Democratic crime syndicate… people like Joe Biden who’s been sucking off the public tit for 50 years and championed the sending of our jobs overseas and making the billionaires richer and the Bigs bigger.

Yet, as the nation descends, there is always more money to enrich the military/industrial/intelligence complex with over $1 trillion per year dumped into their coffers. Name the war that the D.C. Gang started since the end of WWII and assess the cost benefit analysis. Here are a few: • Korean War: Lost • Vietnam War: Lost • Afghanistan War: Lost • Iraq War: Lost • Syrian War: Ongoing Bloody Disaster • Libyan War: Ongoing Bloody Disaster • Yemen War: Worst Humanitarian Disaster on Earth. Therefore, with a stellar track record of monumental failures, why would anyone with a brain bigger than a pea believe or follow warped-brain politician’s war dictates… politicians who shoot off their fat mouths to start wars, but never shoot a rifle to fight the wars they start?

[..] As we reported last week, with significant percentages of the world’s corn, wheat, barley and fertilizers unable to be shipped out of Russia and Ukraine—and/or sanctioned—food and fertilizer prices have sharply spiked since the Ukraine War began: Wheat is up almost 22 percent, barley 32 percent and fertilizers jumped by 40 percent. The two nations accounted for 75 percent of the world’s sunflower seed oil, 32 percent of the barley, 30 percent wheat and 17 percent of corn exports. And over the past year, barley prices rocketed up 82 percent, wheat prices spiked 69 percent and corn prices jumped 36 percent.

“Ukraine has only compounded a catastrophe on top of a catastrophe,” said David M. Beasley, executive director of the World Food Program. “There is no precedent even close to this since World War II.” Beyond WWII, as we reported, the COVID War destroyed the lives and livelihoods of hundreds of millions of people. The imbecilic, non-scientific draconian lockdown mandates pushed hunger up 18 percent… from 720 million to 811 million people according to the UN. And now with the Ukraine War raging, the United Nations said its implications on the global food market would push up an additional 13.1 million people into hunger. “We’ll be taking food from the hungry to give to the starving,” Beasley said.

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“This suggests to me, at least, that Putin is not intentionally attacking civilians..”

Pentagon Drops Truth Bombs to Stave Off War With Russia (Lauria)

Western corporate media, depending almost exclusively on Ukrainian sources, report that Russia is losing the war, with its military offensive “stalled,” and in frustration has deliberately targeted civilians and flattened cities. Biden has bought into this part of the story, calling Russian President Vladimir Putin a “war criminal.” He has also said that Russia is planning a “false flag” chemical attack to pin on Ukraine. But on Tuesday, the Pentagon took the bold step of leaking two stories to reporters that contradict those tales. “Russia’s conduct in the brutal war tells a different story than the widely accepted view that Vladimir Putin is intent on demolishing Ukraine and inflicting maximum civilian damage—and it reveals the Russian leader’s strategic balancing act,” reported Newsweek in an article entitled, “Putin’s Bombers Could Devastate Ukraine But He’s Holding Back. Here’s Why.”

The piece quotes an unnamed analyst at the Pentagon’s Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) saying, “The heart of Kyiv has barely been touched. And almost all of the long-range strikes have been aimed at military targets.” A retired U.S. Air Force officer now working as an analyst for a Pentagon contractor, added: “We need to understand Russia’s actual conduct. If we merely convince ourselves that Russia is bombing indiscriminately, or [that] it is failing to inflict more harm because its personnel are not up to the task or because it is technically inept, then we are not seeing the real conflict.” The article says: “As of the past weekend, in 24 days of conflict, Russia has flown some 1,400 strike sorties and delivered almost 1,000 missiles (by contrast, the United States flew more sorties and delivered more weapons in the first day of the 2003 Iraq war). …

“A proportion of those strikes have damaged and destroyed civilian structures and killed and injured innocent civilians, but the level of death and destruction is low compared to Russia’s capacity. ‘I know it’s hard … to swallow that the carnage and destruction could be much worse than it is,’ says the DIA analyst. ‘But that’s what the facts show. This suggests to me, at least, that Putin is not intentionally attacking civilians, that perhaps he is mindful that he needs to limit damage in order to leave an out for negotiations.’” These Pentagon sources confirm what Putin and the Russian Ministry of Defense have been saying all along: that instead of being “stalled,” Russia is executing a methodical war plan to encircle cities, opening humanitarian corridors for civilians, leaving civilian infrastructure like water, electricity, telephony and internet intact, and trying to avoid as many civilian casualties as possible.

Until these Pentagon leaks it was difficult to confirm that Russia was entirely telling the truth and that corporate media were publishing fables cooked up by Ukraine’s publicity machine.

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If Russia hasn’t done what Americans would do, it must mean they are failing…

Putin’s Bombers Could Devastate Ukraine But He’s Holding Back (NW)

Over the course of almost four weeks, missiles fired at Kyiv have been scarce. Ukrainian media have reported just more than a dozen incidents involving Russian cruise and ballistic missiles intercepted over the city and its closest suburbs since February 24. And all of them, U.S. experts say, have been clearly headed for legitimate military targets. “The fact that the mobile S-300 SAM systems are still operating is a powerful indictment of Russia’s ability to conduct dynamic or time-sensitive targeting,” the Atlantic Council asserted this week in a military brief. The DIA analyst disagrees: “For whatever reason, clearly the Russians have been reluctant to strike inside the urban megalopolis of Kyiv.


“Yes they might not be up to the U.S. task [in dynamic targeting] or in establishing air superiority … But this is the Russian air force, subordinate to the ground forces. And this war is different: it’s being fought on the ground, where everything strategic that Russia might destroy in front of its forces—bridges, communications, airfields, etc.—also becomes unusable to them as they move forward.” From the very beginning of air strikes, both U.S. analysts agree, some of the limited air and missile attacks have also had some internal logic. Take, for instance, the airfield at Hostomel, northwest of Kyiv. It wasn’t directly attacked because Russia initially used it to land paratroopers, with the hope of advancing to the capital city. Instead the airfield and the surrounding countryside became the scene a major battle, as Ukrainian forces mounted a fierce defense. In the south, Kherson airport also wasn’t attacked. The reason has become clear: Russia is now using that very airfield to stage its own forces.

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“..the main source of Russia’s foreign-exchange reserves — oil and gas exports — has been excluded from the sanctions..”

Sanctioning Russia Could Topple The West (Fazi)

So what should we expect from the sanctions? Western pundits and commentators have little doubt: the sanctions will hamstring the Russian economy, sow discontent among the Russian people and elites alike, and possibly even cause the downfall of the Putin regime. At the very least, we’re told, they will hinder Russia’s war efforts. But history suggests otherwise: see Iraq, or more recently Iran. Far more likely is that this turns out to be the latest Western strategic miscalculation in a long list of strategic blunders, of which the United States’ inglorious withdrawal from Afghanistan is just the most recent example. After all, Russia has been preparing for this moment for quite some time.

Following the first wave of Western sanctions, in 2014, and partly in retaliation against them, Putin embarked on what analysts have dubbed a “Fortress Russia” strategy, building up the country’s international reserves and diversifying them away from US dollars and British pounds, reducing its foreign exposure, boosting its economic cooperation with China, and pursuing import substitution strategies in several industries, including food, medicine and technology, in an effort to insulate Russia as much as possible from external shocks. True, Putin made the mistake of leaving around half of those reserves parked in foreign central banks, resulting in these now being confiscated. But nonetheless Russia still has access to more than $300 billion in gold and foreign-exchange reserves — more than most countries in the world and more than enough to cushion any short-term fall in exports, or prop up the rouble (for a while).

Moreover, the Russian central bank reacted to the sanctions by stopping capital flows out of Russia and nationalising the foreign exchange earnings of major exporters, requiring Russian firms to convert 80% of their dollar and euro earnings into roubles. It also raised interest rates to 20% in an effort to attract foreign capital. These measures are aimed at bolstering the rouble’s value and providing a flow of foreign exchange into the country. They appear to be working: while the rouble is around 40% of its value since the start of the conflict, the Russian currency’s free-fall seems to have come to a halt for now, even registering an uptick over the past two weeks. For the time being, Russia’s financial account — the difference between the money flowing in and out of the country — is far from disastrous.

Let’s not forget that the main source of Russia’s foreign-exchange reserves — oil and gas exports — has been excluded from the sanctions, for obvious reasons: for most European countries, Russia accounts for a huge part of their oil and gas imports (and other staple commodities), and there’s simply no way of replacing those energy sources from one day to the next. In short, Russia runs no risk, in the short term, of running out of reserves and not being able to pay for its imports. But even assuming that the West decided to put a stop to all its imports from Russia overnight, there’s no reason to believe that this would bring the Russian military machine to a halt. The notion that “we are financing Russia’s war by purchasing gas and oil”, as the Finnish prime minister recently stated, is fundamentally misplaced.

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A translation at the Saker. Not clear from what.

“..if the Baltic statehood develops in the same direction in which it has been developing for the last thirty years, then sooner or later the denazification operation is inevitable.”

Will Poland Invade The Western Ukraine? (Saker)

the pro-American European lobby is in a state of unstable equilibrium; it wants to intervene in this conflict, but is afraid. The Americans do not yet give sufficient guarantees. Biden is now going to Poland to talk about exactly this, and we’ll see what he tells them. Well, I think not now, not now, but in general, given what trends have prevailed in the Baltics. Sooner or later the denazification operation will have to be carried out, because, as the history of Ukraine shows, living next to the Nazi state, even if it is small, means everything equally uncomfortable. Just because we are two different systems, we are on different sides of good and evil, and we will always be in confrontation with each other, and confrontation with the state that is on our borders will always be used by our enemies, regardless of who is this enemy at the moment.

Therefore, naturally, if the Balts do not take it reasonably, then sooner or later they, just like Ukraine, will ask for the denazification operation. Ukraine asked for a long time, in fact, persuaded for 30 years. Therefore, Ukraine began to prepare for a war with Russia from the first day of its Independence. It was, by the way, her idea-fix. Well, it was getting ready, getting ready, now 30 years have passed – she got ready. Finally, she asked for the war. By and large, the Balts behave in the same way. They now think that they are covered by NATO and the EU, but as the practice of recent years has shown, this is a very unreliable umbrella.

It is unlikely that anyone will be especially tense and risk a major war for the Baltic states. Moreover, there is always a casus bellum. It’s just that now, of course, Russia is too busy to go to the Baltic states. If only they won’t interfere with Russia on their own along with the Poles. They once tried to attack Belarus. They can repeat. If they themselves do not get involved in this matter, then the problem, the Baltics, is a problem of the distant future. During this time, they can change their minds, correct themselves, establish normal contacts, and choose other politicians. But if the Baltic statehood develops in the same direction in which it has been developing for the last thirty years, then sooner or later the denazification operation is inevitable.

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“Sending NATO peacekeepers to Ukraine would lead to a direct clash between the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation and the alliance.”

Lavrov: Peacekeeping Effort Could Result In Direct Clash With NATO (JTN)

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov warned this week that if NATO sends peacekeepers into Ukraine amid Russia’s invasion, that action will lead to a direct military confrontation between Russian and allied forces. According to the Russian state news agency TASS, Lavrov said Wednesday morning, “Sending NATO peacekeepers to Ukraine would lead to a direct clash between the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation and the alliance.” Linda Thomas-Greenfield, the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations eliminated the possibility of the U.S. becoming part of a peacekeeping operation inside Ukraine, reiterating that the Biden administration will not send American troops into the country under conflict.


“We don’t want to escalate this into a war with the United States,” said Thomas-Greenfield. “But we will support our NATO allies,” adding that President Biden “has made clear that if there is an attack on any of our NATO allies, under Article 5, that we will support those countries and defend those countries.” The war has been going on for about a month as Russia’s far larger army continues to fight for control of Ukraine’s major cities. In the past days, the battle for Ukraine’s strategic port city of Mariupol has grown increasingly fiery. Thus far, the resistance effort from Ukraine has been unexpectedly fierce, though western experts warn that the Ukrainian’s longtime outlook against Russian forces may spell trouble.

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Just The News, a right wing unit, has trouble positioning itself. They must be both anti-Biden AND anti-Putin.

Ukraine Says Russia Is Holding Aid Workers Captive In Mariupol (JTN)

Speaking Tuesday night in a video address to his nation, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy accused Russian forces of seizing a humanitarian convoy in Mariupol.Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk said the Russians are holding captive 11 bus drivers and four rescue workers as well as their vehicles. Zelenskyy said the efforts to establish stable humanitarian corridors in Mariupol, which has been under heavy attack, are being “foiled by the Russian occupiers, by shelling, or deliberate terror.” A senior U.S. defense official told the Associated Press that Russian ships in the Sea of Azov are adding to the shelling of Mariupol, a strategic port city.


On Wednesday, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that the Russian military operation is unfolding “strictly in accordance with the plans and purposes that were established beforehand.” He added that Putin’s aims are to “get rid of the military potential of Ukraine” and to “ensure that Ukraine changes from an anti-Russian center to a neutral country.”

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Uranium One. Nuff said.

How Russia Got Stronger As Bidens And Clintons Got Richer (JTN)

By 2010, the Obama-Biden-Clinton Russian reset was in full swing. The administration put forth a mutual nuclear disarmament treaty known as “New START,” which, while noble in its declared intentions, risked weakening a compliant partner such as the United States while strengthening a Russia not constrained by the rules. Another deal that Obama, Biden, and Clinton gave the Russians was called the “123 Agreement,” which allowed state-owned Russian entities like nuclear behemoth Rosatom to sell nuclear materials directly to U.S. utility companies. This deal continues to pay huge dividends to the Obama Foundation’s top donor, Chicago-based Exelon Corporation. And President Biden has allowed that deal to survive even during the Ukraine war, exempting nuclear fuel sales to U.S. utilities from his recent sanctions targeting Russian energy imports.

Meanwhile, the U.S.-driven 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, commonly known as the Iran nuclear deal, and other so-called denuclearization efforts with Libya and North Korea, effectively sent hundreds of thousands of tons of uranium to Russia for enrichment — a huge cash and energy windfall for Putin. On top of these nuclear handouts, the Obama-Biden-Clinton team gave Russia one of the biggest prizes of all: Uranium One. Before the Russian takeover, Uranium One was a Canadian company that mined Uranium around the world. It had assets on at least three continents — Eurasia, Africa, and North America. Its assets in Wyoming, Utah, and other states constituted approximately 20% of U.S. uranium capacity and meant that the Obama-Biden Committee of Foreign Investment in the U.S. (CFIUS) would have to sign off on the deal. They could have said no, but the deal was approved.

Investors in the deal had funneled $145 million into Secretary Clinton’s family foundation. Its approval helped to give Russia a near-monopoly on global uranium production. After investigative reporter and author Peter Schweizer broke the Uranium One story in 2015, a State Department under secretary, Jose Fernandez, took the blame. Fernandez later landed a “very rewarding” position at the Clinton-connected Center for American Progress. Fernandez has now come back through the revolving door and is a top official in the Biden State Department.

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“First, I put on my socks, then my pants, then my shirt, then my jacket … and then I am fully dressed.”

The Death Of The Supreme Court Confirmation Process (Turley)

“This is not a normal day for America. We have never had this moment before.” Those 15 words from Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) captured the historic confirmation hearing for Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, the first Black woman nominated to the Supreme Court. In other respects, however, the hearing was an all-too-familiar moment, particularly in its lack of substantive legal discussion. The Jackson hearing continued the rapid reduction of the range of questions for nominees, leaving these hearings as little more than performance art for senators and an endurance test for nominees. The hearing was impressive in the ability of senators to move effortlessly between diametrically opposing positions. For those with memories extending back to 2020, there were turns that were enough to snap your neck.

In Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s hearing, members like Sen. Chris Coons (D-R.I.) declared: “What’s at issue is her judicial philosophy.” Yesterday, during Jackson’s hearing (around the 6:30 mark), Coons declared: “I don’t believe that ‘a judicial philosophy’ is always all that meaningful.” It was clear from the outset that Jackson would not discuss her judicial philosophy on interpreting the Constitution or statutes — the very issue Democratic senators cited in voting against Barrett in 2020. When asked about her judicial philosophy, Jackson responded with a discussion of her “judicial methodology.” Indeed, on the second day of questioning, Jackson told Sen. Grassley that “I do have a philosophy. My philosophy is my methodology.” It is akin to asking someone about their preferred clothing style and having them respond, “First, I put on my socks, then my pants, then my shirt, then my jacket … and then I am fully dressed.”

Given that evasion, it was not surprising that Coons felt compelled to say judicial philosophy was really not that important and the key all along was methodology. Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii) agreed. After labeling Barrett an unacceptable “originalist,” she now dismisses originalism and judicial philosophy questions for Jackson (around the 8:48 mark) because “I do not find labels particularly useful.” In reality, it did not seem like any substantive answers were “particularly useful.” I have complained about that lack of substance in prior hearings where nominees discussed favorite movies and baseball but not long-held principles of constitutional interpretation. The Ginsburg Rule — enabling nominees to refuse to answer questions about their positions on particular rights — has reduced confirmation hearings to the nutritional value of a Slurpee.

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“They were unsure whether saying “get vaccinated to protect others” would increase willingness to vaccinate.”

Anger Towards the Unvaccinated was Intentional Psychological Manipulation (NE)

As the first wave of the pandemic died down in 2020, the narrative was already being pushed that vaccines were the only way out. However, even before it was clear that the vaccines would predominantly be mRNA based, many were rightly hesitant to receive a novel vaccine that had been produced at warp speed. With The Science™ so convinced that their solution was the only solution, something had to be done to increase uptake. Even though there were many opposing opinions (that were ignored), it was thought that without high rates of vaccine uptake, the pandemic would likely be prolonged. Something had to be done about vaccine hesitancy, so along came Yale University with a study which began in July 2020.

The study, which was not published online until October 2021 (once everyone was vaccinated) was to test “how persuasive messaging affects COVID-19 vaccine uptake intentions”. Recent studies had shown that explaining vaccine herd immunity increased willingness to receive a vaccine and reduced the time people would wait to get vaccinated. However, other work found that prosocial appeals did not increase vaccination intentions and prosocial concerns were absent in densely populated areas. They were unsure whether saying “get vaccinated to protect others” would increase willingness to vaccinate. The authors of the study suggested that something else would be needed to get people to encourage others close to them to get vaccinated and to hold negative judgments of those who don’t get vaccinated.

“Viewing vaccination through the lens of a collective action problem suggests that in addition to increasing individuals’ intentions to receive a vaccine, effective public health messages would also increase people’s willingness to encourage those close to them to vaccinate and to hold negative judgments of those who do not vaccinate. By encouraging those close to them to vaccinate, people are both promoting compliance with social norms and increasing their own level of protection against the disease. Also, by judging those who do not vaccinate more negatively, they apply social pressure to others to promote cooperative behavior. This would be consistent with theories of cooperation, like indirect reciprocity or partner choice, that rely on free riders being punished or ostracized for their past actions to encourage prosocial outcomes. Thus, effective messaging could have outsized effects on promoting vaccination if it both causes people to vaccinate themselves and to encourage those around them to do so.”

Promotion of fear

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Kolakusic is fast becomig everyone’s favorite European.

“Dictatorship Of The Worst Kind” – Trudeau Lambasted In EU Parliament (TNC)

Croatian Member of European (MEP) Parliament and former judge Mislav Kolakusic called Prime Minister Justin Trudeau out to his face in Brussels on Tuesday, savaging Trudeau over “civil rights violations” against Freedom Convoy protesters. Speaking before the European Parliament, Kolakusic accused the prime minister of engaging in a “dictatorship of the worst kind” by using the Emergencies Act to crush peaceful demonstrations. Kolakusic’s speech followed Trudeau’s own address to the parliament, where the prime minister had sounded off on purported threats to democracy posed by freedom protesters. Kolakusic responded to Trudeau’s claims through a Croatian translator.

“To defend our rights and the rights of our children, which we have acquired over the centuries, many of us – including myself – are willing to risk our own freedom and our own lives,” he said. “Unfortunately, today there are those among us who trample on these fundamental values.” Kolakusic then turned to face Trudeau. “Canada, once a symbol of the modern world, has become a symbol of civil rights violations under your quasi-liberal boot in recent months,” he said. Kolakusic went on to blast Trudeau for the militarized crackdown on Ottawa protesters where one woman using a walker had been trampled by a police-mounted riot horse. He also referred to how Trudeau had used the Emergencies Act to freeze the bank accounts of convoy protesters and donors.

“We watched how you trample women with horses, how you block the bank accounts of single parents so that they can’t even pay their children’s education and medicine, that they can’t pay utilities, mortgages for their homes. To you, these may be liberal methods, for many citizens of the world, it is a dictatorship of the worst kind. Rest assured that the citizens of the world, united, can stop any regime that wants to destroy,” said Kolakusic.

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When you zoom in, you realise that these black horses are actually the shadows of Zebras

Photo by Beverly Joubert – taken above the shallow waters of the Makgadikgadi Pan, a salt pan in Botswana – NatGeo 2018 Wildlife Photo of the Year

 

 

Black Rock

 

 

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

 

 

 

Mar 232022
 


Jean-Francois Millet Charity 1859

 

Ukraine’s Propaganda War: Int’l PR Firms, DC Lobbyists and CIA Cutouts (MPN)
Biden Team: More Russia Sanctions Will Be Announced This Week (DM)
The Lie of American Innocence (Chris Hedges)
Joe Rogan Exposes How West Has Done A Complete 180 On ‘Corrupt’ Ukraine (SN)
Medical Conspiracy: With Eyes Wide Open, They Killed, Maimed Thousands (TN)
A Simple Way To End Vaccine Misinformation Immediately (Kirsch)
Record Infections In Super-vaxxed UK Seniors (Blaze)
Is Tinnitus A Rare Side Effect Of Covid Vaccines? (NBC)
New Zealand’s Discrimination Against Unvaccinated Is Rampant (Bexte)
Next Inflation Shock Comes From Resource Nationalism (Cerasuolo)
White House Comms Director Blames Harris For Chaos In VP Office (JTN)
SCOTUS Nominee: Lighter Sentences Pedophiles b/c Internet Makes It Easy (ZH)

 

 

Have a wonderfully happy wedding day, Julian and Stella.

 

 

 

 

Zelensky is a puppet
https://twitter.com/i/status/1506488050670579716

 

 

@MaajidNawaz challenges the mainstream narrative on Volodymyr Zelenskyy

 

 

 

 

K Street in Kyiv. “Agencies have offered up entire teams to support Kyiv in the communications war.”

Ukraine’s Propaganda War: Int’l PR Firms, DC Lobbyists and CIA Cutouts (MPN)

Since the Russian offensive inside Ukraine commenced on February 24, the Ukrainian military has cultivated the image of a plucky little army standing up to the Russian Goliath. To bolster the perception of Ukrainian military mettle, Kiev has churned out a steady stream of sophisticated propaganda aimed at stirring public and official support from Western countries. The campaign includes language guides, key messages, and hundreds of propaganda posters, some of which contain fascist imagery and even praise Neo-Nazi leaders. Behind Ukraine’s public relations effort is an army of foreign political strategists, Washington DC lobbyists, and a network of intelligence-linked media outlets.

Ukraine’s propaganda strategy earned it praise from a NATO commander who told the Washington Post, “They are really excellent in stratcom — media, info ops, and also psy-ops.” The Post ultimately conceded that “Western officials say that while they cannot independently verify much of the information that Kyiv puts out about the evolving battlefield situation, including casualty figures for both sides, it nonetheless represents highly effective stratcom.” Key to the propaganda effort is an international legion of public relations firms working directly with Ukraine’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs to wage information warfare. According to the industry news site PRWeek, the initiative was launched by an anonymous figure who allegedly founded a Ukraine-based public relations firm.

“From the first hour of war, we decided to join the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to help them distribute the official sources to show the truth,” the nameless figure told PR Week. “This is a hybrid war: the mix of bloodily struggling fight with a huge disinformation and fake campaign lead by Russia [sic].” According to the anonymous figure, more than 150 public relations firms have joined the propaganda blitz. The international effort is spearheaded by public relations firm PR Network co-founder Nicky Regazzoni and Francis Ingham, a top public relations consultant with close ties to the UK’s government.

Ingham previously worked for Britain’s Conservative Party, sits on the UK Government Communication Service Strategy and Evaluation Council, is Chief Executive of the International Communications Consultancy Organisation, and leads the membership body for UK local government communicators, LG Comms. “We’ve been privileged to help coordinate efforts to support the Ukrainian Government in the last few days, “ Ingham told PRovoke Media. “Agencies have offered up entire teams to support Kyiv in the communications war. Our support for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine is unwavering and will continue for as long as needed.”

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As energy and food prices rise in US and EU. America is bankrupt in more than one way.

Biden Team: More Russia Sanctions Will Be Announced This Week (DM)

President Joe Biden will unveil another round of sanctions on Russia and tighten existing ones during his visit to Europe this week, his national security adviser announced on Tuesday. Biden is due to leave the White House tomorrow ahead of a N.A.T.O. summit in Brussels on Thursday. ‘He will have the opportunity to coordinate on the next phase of military assistance to Ukraine,’ said National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan. ‘He will join our partners in imposing further sanctions on Russia and tightening the existing sanctions to crack down on evasion and to ensure robust enforcement.’ The president will also unveil additional help for refugees and for civilians inside Ukraine, many of whom are trapped in besieged cities, he added.

‘From Brussels, President Biden will travel to Poland where he will engage with US troops, who are now helping to defend NATO territory, and he will meet with experts involved in the humanitarian response,’ said Sullivan. ‘He will also hold a bilateral meeting with President Duda of Poland.’ The U.S. and allies have already imposed sanctions on Russia, as part of an effort to weaken President Vladimir Putin’s position at home and starve funding from his war machine. Washington has also worked with European and N.A.T.O. governments to deliver billions of dollars of weapons and aid to Ukraine. During the briefing at the White House, Sullivan was also asked about Russia’s potential use of nuclear weapons.

‘We have not changed our nuclear posture today. But we are constantly monitoring for that potential contingency and of course we take it as seriously as one could possibly take it,’ he said. ‘We will be consulting with allies and partners on that potential contingency among a range of others and discussing what our potential responses are.’ Sullivan said Biden will use the trip to work with allies on strengthening N.A.T.O.’s defenses on its eastern flank. ‘He will announce joint action on enhancing European energy security and reducing Europe’s dependence on Russian gas,’ he said.

Peskov nukes

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“Tens of millions of people, who had no connection with the attacks of 9/11, were killed, wounded, lost their homes, and saw their lives and their families destroyed because of our war crimes. Who will cry out for them?”

The Lie of American Innocence (Chris Hedges)

The branding of Vladimir Putin as a war criminal by Joe Biden, who lobbied for the Iraq war and staunchly supported the 20 years of carnage in the Middle East, is one more example of the hypocritical moral posturing sweeping across the United States. It is unclear how anyone would try Putin for war crimes since Russia, like the United States, does not recognize the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court in The Hague. But justice is not the point. Politicians like Biden, who do not accept responsibility for our well-documented war crimes, bolster their moral credentials by demonizing their adversaries. They know the chance of Putin facing justice is zero. And they know their chance of facing justice is the same.

We know who our most recent war criminals are, among others: George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, General Ricardo Sanchez, former CIA Director George Tenet, former Asst. Atty. Gen. Jay Bybee, former Dep. Asst. Atty. Gen. John Yoo, who set up the legal framework to authorize torture; the helicopter pilots who gunned down civilians, including two Reuters journalists, in the “Collateral Murder” video released by WikiLeaks. We have evidence of the crimes they committed. But, like Putin’s Russia, those who expose these crimes are silenced and persecuted. Julian Assange, even though he is not a U.S. citizen and his WikiLeaks site is not a U.S.-based publication, is charged under the U.S. Espionage Act for making public numerous U.S. war crimes. Assange, currently housed in a high security prison in London, is fighting a losing battle in the British courts to block his extradition to the United States, where he faces 175 years in prison.

One set of rules for Russia, another set of rules for the United States. Weeping crocodile tears for the Russian media, which is being heavily censored by Putin, while ignoring the plight of the most important publisher of our generation speaks volumes about how much the ruling class cares about press freedom and truth. If we demand justice for Ukrainians, as we should, we must also demand justice for the one million people killed — 400,000 of whom were noncombatants — by our invasions, occupations and aerial assaults in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Yemen, and Pakistan. We must demand justice for those who were wounded, became sick or died because we destroyed hospitals and infrastructure.

We must demand justice for the thousands of soldiers and marines who were killed, and many more who were wounded and are living with lifelong disabilities, in wars launched and sustained on lies. We must demand justice for the 38 million people who have been displaced or become refugees in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, the Philippines, Libya, and Syria, a number that exceeds the total of all those displaced in all wars since 1900, apart from World War II, according to the Watson Institute for International & Public Affairs at Brown University. Tens of millions of people, who had no connection with the attacks of 9/11, were killed, wounded, lost their homes, and saw their lives and their families destroyed because of our war crimes. Who will cry out for them?


10 wars, 6 millions killed, 1 Nobel Peace Prize, 0 sanction

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“We’re supposed to just veer away from the narrative that was being pushed just a couple years ago..”

Joe Rogan Exposes How West Has Done A Complete 180 On ‘Corrupt’ Ukraine (SN)

Joe Rogan noted on his podcast that the Western narrative on Ukraine has flipped 180 degrees in a few weeks from the country having a horrible corrupt government to being heroic allies against the Russian scourge. “I have this screenshot that someone sent me,” Rogan stated, “about the way the people on the left were talking about the Ukraine situation before the war.” He continued, “This is one of the things that’s so weird is that they were very disparaging of Ukraine, and they were talking about the massive corruption of Ukraine, and how horrible it was over there.” “And now, all of a sudden, they’re looking at it like they’re heroes. The same exact people. This is what’s confusing,” the host added.


Rogan then read out points from the screenshot he referenced wherein Ukraine was labeled “the most corrupt nation in Europe” with an “increasingly corrupt and authoritarian” leader who is seeking to deepen an “alliance with the far right”. “We’re supposed to just veer away from the narrative that was being pushed just a couple years ago,” Rogan asserted. Rogan also went on to point out how insane it is that Facebook and other social media platforms are officially sanctioning violent rhetoric against Russians, exclaiming “What the f*ck is that? What is that?”

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“..about 158,000 different health problems in all..”

Medical Conspiracy: With Eyes Wide Open, They Killed, Maimed Thousands (TN)

> A small batch of documents released by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in mid-November 2021 revealed that in the first three months of the COVID jab rollout, Pfizer received 42,086 adverse event reports that included 1,223 deaths. The first really large tranche of Pfizer documents — some 10,000 pages — was released by the FDA March 1, 2022. Included are nine pages of recorded side effects, about 158,000 different health problems in all. An initial review of case report forms (CRFs) reveal significant data collection errors and anomalies. Problems included patients entered into the “healthy population” group who were far from healthy; serious adverse event (SAE) numbers that were left blank; sample barcodes that were missing; at least one death of a patient the day before being listed as being at a medical checkup; and second doses that were administered outside the three-week protocol window.


There also are questions as to whether participants were properly observed for an adequate amount of time; plus adverse events were listed as “not serious” despite extended hospital stay and much more. A majority of the CRFs in this release were from Ventavia-run trial sites. Ventavia is currently facing a lawsuit brought by Brook Jackson, a former Ventavia regional director. Jackson was fired shortly after she brought concerns about potential data falsification and poor laboratory management to the attention of the FDA and higher-ups in the company.

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Autopsies. Embalmers.

A Simple Way To End Vaccine Misinformation Immediately (Kirsch)

If they truly wanted to end vaccine hesitancy, all they have to do is require autopsies if you die within 60 days of vaccination and require the medical examiners to make the required tests to determine vaccine involvement (as doctors Bhakdi and Burkhardt have done) and publish them. Publishing a fraudulent report would be a criminal offense. This would end the debate. Or they could simply require all licensed embalmers to check for the telltale clots and make the numbers public. Again, it would be a crime to falsify reports. Or they could do both. Why don’t they do this? I’ll tell you why they don’t do it: They don’t do it because they know the results would be devastating and would immediately halt the vaccine and discredit the FDA, CDC, the entire medical establishment, virtually all members of Congress, and the mainstream media.


Why doesn’t Florida Governor DeSantis require this in Florida? What is he afraid of? Why doesn’t Governor Newsom require this in California? What does he have to fear? DeSantis would be the most likely of any governor to do this. He could be a world hero if he did this. My suggestion isn’t limited to the US. Any public health official anywhere in the world could order this: local, state, federal. A state or federal legislature could require it. Any member of any legislature could introduce a bill. Why are California Assemblymember Evan Low and state Senator Dr. Richard Pan doing nothing? They have said they want to end medical misinformation. This is a perfect opportunity for them to walk the talk! Why aren’t members of the medical community calling for this? Will any of these people join me in calling for this? Or will they sit on the sidelines and say nothing?

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“Just because Volodymyr Zelenskyy is the new Fauci, it doesn’t mean COVID is over.”

Record Infections In Super-vaxxed UK Seniors (Blaze)

Just because Volodymyr Zelenskyy is the new Fauci, it doesn’t mean COVID is over. In fact, cases are surging in many European countries, and U.K. seniors are now experiencing record numbers. “Covid infections surge to record high for over-70s in UK” was the title of a Financial Times article from Friday. But how can there be record infections precisely after nearly every senior was vaccinated and 90% were boosted, even though many already have had prior infection? Or are the record infections because of the shots, not despite them, and does this mean that they are preventing people from achieving immunity? Ireland is one of the most vaccinated countries in the European Union, yet hospitalizations are rising. There are now more people in Irish hospitals than at any point in 12 months.

Nearly 95% of all adults are fully vaccinated, and nearly 100% of seniors are vaccinated and boosted. The number of COVID cases has nearly tripled in the U.K. since the nadir of the post-winter drop four weeks ago. Moreover, deaths are still hovering around 125 a day, whereas after the 2021 winter wave (with a much lower prior infection rate), deaths were nearly reduced to zero. Furthermore, Scotland, which has the highest vaccination rate of anywhere in the U.K. and is the only region with mask mandates, seems to be worse off than ever before. “Scotland recorded its highest infection rates of the pandemic so far, with one in every 14 people infected with the virus in the week to mid-March, up from one in 18 a week earlier,” reported the Financial Times.

Roughly 90% of all people over age 12 in Scotland have two shots, and 73% have boosters. Among seniors, boosters are nearly universal. Thus, there is nowhere to run or hide from the vaccine failures. The negative efficacy is out of control. What about protection against death? Well, we can’t exactly see where the deaths are coming from because Scotland conveniently stopped providing that data, but the U.K. government will still offer the weekly reports for a few more weeks. According to the latest U.K. health surveillance report, roughly 95% of those over 70 are double-vaccinated and about 90%-93% of the age cohorts over 70 are boosted. Just 1.6% of the senior cases between weeks 7 and 10 of this year were among the unvaccinated, which is below the 5% share of the population pie they compose. The triple-boosted are 90% of the cases.

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NBC tries to obfuscate the issues.

Is Tinnitus A Rare Side Effect Of Covid Vaccines? (NBC)

It was the shock of a loud whistle that almost caused Gregory Poland to veer off the road as he was driving home after getting his second Covid-19 vaccine. “It startled me,” said Poland, who is 66 years old. “I thought it was a dog whistle going off right next to me.” It was not a dog whistle; it was a piercing sound his brain conjured up for an unknown reason. Poland suspects it may have been a side effect of the vaccine. That was one year ago. The noise, he said, has been unrelenting ever since. For the record, neither Poland nor the medical community at large can prove that the mRNA Covid vaccine that he received had anything to do with his sudden onset of tinnitus, a condition that is often described as a ringing, buzzing or hissing noise in one or both ears. It can be constant or intermittent.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and vaccine manufacturers, have investigated anecdotal reports of tinnitus through programs such as the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System, or VAERS, following Covid vaccination, but have found no evidence of cause and effect. And Poland’s tale might not carry much weight if he weren’t Dr. Gregory Poland — a globally respected physician who has dedicated his career to vaccine study and development as founder and director of the Mayo Clinic’s Vaccine Research Group in Rochester, Minnesota. What’s more, Poland is a paid scientific adviser for Johnson & Johnson/Janssen Global Services, and acts as a consultant on vaccine development for Moderna, as well as other pharmaceutical companies.

Given Poland’s interests and the uncertainty of a true link between the vaccine and tinnitus — not to mention a strong anti-vaccine movement — why would he publicize his condition and suspicion that a vaccine could be involved? “As a physician who’s taken an oath to first do no harm, I think about these things,” Poland said. His day-to-day focus, he said, is to help patients work through the potential risks and benefits of any treatment, including vaccines. “I refuse to be anything less than transparent,” he said. “I refuse to cherry-pick the information that should be presented to people to make good decisions.” What does the science say? There is no known cause of tinnitus, though it is often associated with “acoustic trauma,” such as what is experienced by active duty military personnel.

There is some evidence that Covid-19 itself may worsen the condition in people who have previously suffered from ringing in their ears. When it comes to potential auditory side effects of vaccination, research is sparse. A study published last month in the medical journal JAMA Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery, analyzed reports of hearing issues following Covid-19 vaccines. The reports had been submitted to VAERS. Such reports raise the issue of unexpected problems following any vaccine. Scientists are then tasked with reviewing the reports, looking for patterns of unusual side effects.

In a statement to NBC News, Pfizer said the company takes reported adverse events “very seriously.” “Tinnitus cases have been reviewed and no causal association to the Covid-19 vaccine has been established,” the statement read. A statement from Johnson & Johnson said that tinnitus was identified as an adverse event in its phase 3 clinical trials of the Covid-19 vaccine but also maintained that it was impossible to “establish a causal relationship to vaccine exposure.”

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“..a self-satisfied grin adorning her face…”

New Zealand’s Discrimination Against Unvaccinated Is Rampant (Bexte)

New Zealand remains one of the most flagrantly discriminatory countries in the world due to its treatment of the unvaccinated. While much of the world opens up and ends the two-tiered systems put into place to coerce the unvaccinated to comply with the government’s agenda, New Zealand, under the rule of PM Jacinda Ardern, seems hellbent on dragging the ordeal out as long as possible. According to the government’s website, policies remain for nearly all public sector workers, and the government gives all private businesses the right to continue requiring up to three doses to retain employment. Additionally, during an interview on March 20, Ardern admitted that even if some restrictions are loosened, the vaccine passport will remain in the government’s back pocket just in case.

Perhaps inspired by the Freedom Convoy protests in Canada, New Zealanders took to the streets in early February and have been protesting their government’s restrictions ever since, causing Ardern noticeable concern. Much like other globalists, when finally faced with massive protests not just against mandates but against her as a leader, Ardern claimed that anyone opposed to her authoritarianism is simply being misled by “disinformation.” While Australia was extremely brutal in its crackdown against protesters, what made New Zealand, perhaps, most notable in addressing anyone who dissents, is how smug their PM was when stating the discriminatory policies she planned to implement.

During an interview from October 24, 2021, Ardern unambiguously stated that she was creating an apartheid state to discriminate against the unvaccinated — of course, under the guise of public health. “So, you’ve basically said, you probably don’t see it like this, but two different classes of people. If you’re vaccinated or unvaccinated. You have all these rights if you are vaccinated,” an interviewer asked. “That is what it is. Yep,” Ardern stated, a self-satisfied grin adorning her face.

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Stop calling it inflation. It’s embarrassing.

Next Inflation Shock Comes From Resource Nationalism (Cerasuolo)

First there was supply-chain disruption brought on by the coronavirus, then war in Ukraine further rocked commodity markets. The next bout of inflation via raw material prices will be brought on by resource nationalism. While the cost pressures brought on by the difficulty in moving goods in a world in lockdown are fading, other factors are more enduring. For instance, the post-Cold War spread of e-commerce allowed companies to treat the world as both factory floor and marketplace. Comparative advantage, strategic partnerships and the success of globalization led to growth and prosperity. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine jarred that dynamic and has set in motion a series of quasi-isolationist responses. What started as economic sanctions on Russia has tipped the balance: we are no longer in a uni-polar world.

We have entered into a multi-polar one where traditional economic superpowers can no longer call the shots. Service-driven economies are price takers and have far less leverage over those producing raw materials. The geopolitical landscape has changed and economic incentives along with it. The growing emergency that sanctions on Russia have caused over energy supply security will be inflationary for years to come. Nowhere is this more evident than in Europe, given its direct exposure to Russia energy, with individual countries prioritizing domestic energy security as a first port of call. The European Union entered an era of energy inflation given its commitment to address climate change and fossil fuel dependence by “greening” the economy. Such aims create price pressure, and has led to discussion at the European Central Bank on whether its inflation target should be adjusted.

Russia and Ukraine are two of the globe’s top grain producers. Conflict has triggered panic and price squeezes on everything from fertilizer to cooking oil, and has also led nations to rethink their approach to national stockpiling. Energy security pulls into focus security of other commodities. The list of countries restricting agriculture exports is growing. It includes Indonesia, Hungary, Argentina, and Turkey. China’s begun stockpiling corn and soybeans while sources mention state refiners are considering pausing exports of gasoline and diesel in April. Effectively, every resource a nation produces has the potential to become a bargaining chip. There is a price to meet security of resources. As more economies step away from globalization that cost will get steeper as isolationist tendencies produce greater trade frictions.

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NYT turns on Kamala?

White House Comms Director Blames Harris For Chaos In VP Office (JTN)

Kate Bedingfield, the White House communications director, reportedly pins the blame for disfunction in the vice president’s office squarely on the shoulders of Kamala Harris, according to a new book. “This Will Not Pass: Trump, Biden, and the Battle for America’s Future,” by New York Times reporters Jonathan Martin and Alex Burns, was profiled in Politico on Tuesday and reported details about chaos in the vice president’s office were on display. Harris’ office has lost 10 staffers since summer of 2021 and is reportedly a difficult environment in which to exist. Some of Harris’ staffers reportedly blamed the issue primarily on mismanagement of the vice president, to which Bedingfield responded.

Martin and Burns write that “Bedingfield had taken to noting that the vice presidency was not the first time in Harris’s political career that she had fallen short of sky-high expectations.” “Her Senate office had been messy and her [2020] presidential campaign had been a fiasco. Perhaps, she suggested, the problem was not the vice president’s staff,” write the pair. Politico notes that Bedingfield unequivocally denies making such remarks. “The fact that no one working on this book bothered to call to fact check this unattributed claim tells you what you need to know. Vice President Harris is a force in this administration and I have the utmost respect for the work she does every day to move the country forward,” wrote the White House comms director.

The book reports that frustration between the White House and the office of the vice president began to grow last year after Harris’ widely panned trip to Mexico and Guatemala to assess the “root causes” of the migration crisis at thee U.S. southern border. The vice president has since been tasked with leading a number of political missions, most of which have ended in abject failure – most notably, the election reform bill that failed in the senate after months of political back-and-forth.

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It’s already nuts to insist on a black woman, like two wrongs make one right. But this woman herself is nuts too. Lighter sentences for child porn because there is so much of it? The internet has tons of bomb-making instructions too. Now insert that same logic….

SCOTUS Nominee: Lighter Sentences Pedophiles b/c Internet Makes It Easy (ZH)

Supreme Court Nominee Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson defended her record of giving pedophiles light sentences, arguing that it’s easier for them to procure large volumes through the internet – vs. the effort required to obtain child porn through the mail. “The guideline was based originally on a statutory scheme and directives, specific directives from Congress at a time in which more serious child pornography offenders were identified based on the volume, based on the number of photographs they received in the mail. And that made total sense before, when you didn’t have the internet.

“When we didn’t have distribution. But the way that the guideline is now structured, based on that set of circumstances, is leading to extreme disparities in the system because it’s so easy for people to get volumes of this material now by computers. So it’s not doing the work of differentiating who is a more serious offender in the way that it used to.” Brown Jackson, who notably served as the judge in the ‘Pizzagate’ shooting, was responding to Sen. Josh Hawley’s (R-MO) claim last week that her legal record “endangers our children.” “As a mother and a judge who has had to deal with these cases, I was thinking that nothing could be further from the truth,” Jackson said Tuesday. “These are some of the most difficult cases that a judge has to deal with because we’re talking about pictures of sex abuse of children, we’re talking about graphic descriptions that judges have to read and consider when they decide how to sentence in these cases.”


As Tuesday’s confirmation hearing of Ketanji Brown Jackson continued, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) got into heated exchanges with the nominee over several issues – including her views on Critical Race Theory and her record on child predators. When Cruz asked her opinions on CRT, referring to a 2020 speech she gave at the University of Michigan where she mentioned Nikole Hannah-Jones’ revisionist 1619 project, Brown responded: “It doesn’t come up in my work as It’s never something that I have studied or relied on, and it wouldn’t be something that I would rely on if I was on the Supreme Court.” She also says she hasn’t reviewed “any of those books” that are available at Georgetown Day School, where she sits on the board. Cruz also pressed her over her record on pedophiles.

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Europe changes time this weekend.

 

 

Why is Ukraine America’s fault? | Nicolai N. Petro

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

Mar 132022
 


Pablo Picasso Studio with plaster head 1925

 

Perfectly Lawful and Legal and Unfortunate (Anna Von Reitz)
Much Wants More And Loses All (GEFIRA)
Boomerang Sanctions (Kadi)
Putin’s Options (Jim Rickards)
Russia’s Long-term Economic Prospects (Milanovic)
Fiat Currencies Are Going To “Fail Spectacularly” (Lawrence Lepard)
‘We Are in a New Cold War’ With China: Ex-US Assistant Secretary of State (ET)
Children in China Diagnosed With Leukemia After Taking Chinese Vaccines (ET)
Hospitals No Longer Required to Report COVID Deaths (Mercola)
Moderna Approved a $926 Million Golden Parachute For Its CEO (DM)

 

 

We see the world through the eyes of Hollywood. There’s good and there’s bad, and WE are always on the good side. But the world is not like that. We know this because the best literature never is either. But who reads literature anymore?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Scott Ritter: We trained Nazis

 

 

“..you are all better off letting Vladimir Putin take out the garbage for you.”

Perfectly Lawful and Legal and Unfortunate (Anna Von Reitz)

When the old Russian Federation broke up, and Russia released the Ukraine as an independent country it came with the proviso that if there was evidence of criminality, genocide, international threats to Russia on Ukrainian soil, etc. Russia could come back in and secure the situation. This is part of Russia’s obligation to the rest of the world as well as a matter of Russian security. So, Ukraine was free to be its own country, with the understanding that they were going to be good little international citizens. And if they got out of hand, Russia would come back in and clean things up. Following Ukrainian independence in 1991, the Usual Suspects piled on. It was like a gold rush. Drug smuggling. Human trafficking. Arms sales. Counterfeiting. Organ harvesting. Oil privateering.

Every sordid nasty dirty business in the world was imported to Ukraine, by all the Agencies, the “US Corp”, the DOD, the Mobs of various nations, and associated corporations like Blackwater and Halliburton and on and on and on. All the Dirty Deal Guys showed up like gangbangers. And everyone including Russia just shook their heads. It was business as usual for the Ollie Norths of the world.[..] So, Russia invoked its treaty proviso and came in to clean the situation up and as Vladimir Putin said, “take the garbage out” — not because they wanted to spend all that money and risk their lives and take all the abuse that the propaganda machine can throw — but because otherwise, they’d have all those stockpiles of chemical and biological weapon on their back door step, along with all the other nastiness that was already going on.

[..] Tough as it is, say, aye, Vladimir Putin. Thank you, Russia. And to the people of Ukraine, we know you are, for the most part, innocent victims of the oligarchs and their western Sugar Daddies. Make it easy on yourselves. Stay home and step back. Let Russia clean out the Vermin for you. You’ll be glad you did. If the US/Ukrainian oligarchy had been allowed to continue, the vicious animals would have come in and used a pretext to engage in war on your beautiful land. They would have done what they did in Iraq and polluted it will dirty bombs and dirty artillery shells and ruined your land for farming for generations.

Then they would have gone home and jerked up the price of food for everyone ten times over, because your produce, your wheat, and everything else wouldn’t be there to compete against them. These mean and diabolical criminals always have ten axes to grind. They always figure to win, if not one way, then by another. Take it from the Americans. We’ve been dealing with them for 160 years. We know what they do. We know how they think. And you are all better off letting Vladimir Putin take out the garbage for you. Believe it or not.

Putin evil plan

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Key: “Russians view the hostilities as a repeat of the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945.”

Much Wants More And Loses All (GEFIRA)

The collective post-West has been running amok for the last two weeks. The powers that be make believe that they did not expect that events would unfold the way they are unfolding now (though they did their best to make things happen as they are happening) and they make a show imposing sanctions on the aggressor and assuring the populace that the aggressor sooner or later will cave in. There is yet a third aspect to the phenomenon: the same powers that be want the people to forget that merely twenty years back they themselves assaulted Yugoslavia/Serbia, used missiles with depleted uranium, bombed cities and shot at civilians. Of course, that earlier event was a humanitarian action while the current one is a brutal act of aggression, but we digress.

Now there is a big misconception on the part of the post-West about Russia. If the Western media claim the Russian people are against the war or that the Russian people are about to rebel and overthrow President Putin, then they are either delusional or lying through their teeth. Reality is something that refuses to obey our wishes. The Russian people have rallied around their president and and their authorities; the Russian people – unlike citizens of the post-Western countries – are patriotic and ready to sacrifice themselves in defence of their fatherland. Western sanctions? The post-West may withdraw businesses and impose sanctions on Russian oligarchs, which is music to the ears of the Russian people. They resented Western dominance anyway and they will be more than happy to see the oligarchs mopped up from their society.

Russians view the hostilities as a repeat of the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945. Contrary to what has been done to the Western collective mentality, the Russian authorities under Vladimir Putin took great efforts to raise Russia’s citizens in patriotic values. Russians are going to win because they do not care about money so much as the West does. That’s one big misconception that Western people have about their opponents from the East. It is the West that cannot imagine a life without money and the resultant luxuries. Sanctions or no sanctions, Western companies will sooner or later (I bet: sooner) resume business with Russia because – as everybody in the West knows – “money makes the world go round”. No less a person than Comrade Lenin famously said: capitalists will sell us the rope with which we will make a noose to hang them. And so they will, make no bones about it.

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“The current soaring fuel prices at service stations world-wide are not an outcome of the Russian action in Ukraine. They are the outcome of the sanctions.”

Boomerang Sanctions (Kadi)

The current Western sanctions on nations that refuse to follow the directives of the West do not carry any weight at all; or anything that comes close. Non-Western countries can survive without Tesla, Porsche and Ferrari cars. Earth will continue to spin without French perfumes and champaign. With those facts known though unspoken, the USA continues to impose sanctions on other nations by utilizing the power of the Greenback, ie US Dollar of USD for short. But this approach is foolish to say the least, and it is bound to backfire. America is determined to keep the stature of the USD as the single reserve world currency. But to maintain this stature, America must make sure that the rest of the world needs to use the USD and that it has no other alternative.

But when successive American administrations impose sanctions on other nations that prevent them from using the USD, they are effectively shooting their last and only remaining asset in the foot. This is not a complex issue that requires a PhD in macro-economics to understand. It is very simple in fact. You cannot coerce people to do something by way of banning them from doing it. This is a simple logical contradiction that even children can understand. This oxymoronic comedy of errors appears more ludicrous when we see that the USD is the only asset left that the USA can use to impose sanctions with. Do successive American administrations really believe that sanctioned and potentially sanctionable nations, are going to sit idle and starve themselves to death without taking pre-emptive measures to avert this?

If anything, sanctions over the years have taught even small and developing countries like Cuba, Syria and Iran to be self-reliant and innovative. Those countries have produced whole ‘armies’ of technicians who are able to manufacture spare parts even for old American cars. When you see photos of 1950’s Chevvies in Cuba, rest assured that there are hardly any original made-in-America parts left in them. If an American owns such an antique model and cannot find parts for it in the US, he/she may be able to find them in Cuba. [..] The current soaring fuel prices at service stations world-wide are not an outcome of the Russian action in Ukraine. They are the outcome of the sanctions.

These sanctions can only turn back and hurt the hand that created them. They are not arrows aimed at targets. They are boomerangs, but even boomerangs are meant to return to the hand that launched them when they miss the target. But Western sanctions are sharply-pointed boomerangs that can only hit back, and hit with vengeance, and the soaring fuel prices may just be only the beginning.

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“The shooting war may or may not be over soon, but the financial war has just started and will continue after the shooting stops.”

Putin’s Options (Jim Rickards)

There’s no doubt that the financial sanctions put on Russia by the U.S., the U.K., EU members and others are the most severe ever imposed. The U.S. Treasury has announced 15 separate sanctions programs in recent days and no doubt more are on the way. The targets of these sanctions include Russian banks, Russian stocks and bonds and various payment channels. Most significantly, the U.S. froze the accounts of the Central Bank of Russia. That’s the first time a major central bank’s assets have been frozen since the Cold War, and possibly ever. Yet the financial attacks on Russia go far beyond official sanctions. Numerous private companies including Microsoft, Exxon Mobil, Shell and some major airlines have ceased their business activities in Russia.

Visa and Mastercard have stopped accepting credit card charges from Russia. Google and Apple have turned off the mobile payment apps on phones held by Russian citizens. Shipping giant Maersk has stopped its vessels from unloading or taking cargo from Russian ports. Stock index funds are pushing Russian companies out of their indexes and the Norwegian sovereign wealth fund is divesting Russian stocks. The list of public and private embargoes and boycotts goes on. The financial impact on Russia will be extreme. The Russian economy may be expected to collapse by 20% or more in the first half of 2022, an amount comparable to the economic collapses in the second quarter of 2020 during the first lockdown stage of the pandemic. But Russia has not stood still.

The Central Bank of Russia imposed capital controls so that Russian companies cannot pay interest or principal on international debts. That means those loans and bonds may soon go into default. Many such securities may be stuffed into 401(k) plans of Americans under the umbrella of “emerging markets” funds or ETFs. Even more important is the possibility that interbank lending may start to dry up as Russian banks are frozen and Western banks reduce leverage and shrink balance sheets in order to reduce risk. This will lead to defaults in the West and could even mark the beginning of a global liquidity crisis that can only be contained by Federal Reserve currency swap lines, like we saw in the early stages of the pandemic when markets were collapsing.

But even that technique may not work since there are no swap arrangements in place between the Fed and the Central Bank of Russia. The shooting war may or may not be over soon, but the financial war has just started and will continue after the shooting stops. For that matter, a global financial panic may emerge even before the shooting stops. We all see what’s happening on the surface. Here’s what you don’t see: Someone is on the wrong side of every one of those trades. Hedge funds and banks are losing billions and are sinking. It takes about a week for bodies to float to the surface.

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“US sanctions once imposed are extraordinary difficult to lift.”

Russia’s Long-term Economic Prospects (Milanovic)

When we look at Russia’s long-term economic prospects, it is also useful to begin with some assumptions and to look at historical examples. We can make two assumptions. First, that the current Russian regime, in one form or another, might continue for some ten to twenty years. Second, we can assume that American and Western sanctions will continue throughout the entire period of say, 50 years that we consider here. The arguments for this are as follows. US sanctions once imposed are extraordinary difficult to lift. As of today, there are already 6,000 various Western sanctions imposed against Russia which is more than the sum of sanctions in existence against Iran, Syria and North Korea put together. History shows that US sanctions can last almost without any time limit: sanctions on Cuba are more than 60 years old, on Iran, more than 40 years old, and even the sanctions on the USSR (e.g. the Jackson-Vanik amendment) that were imposed for one reason continued on the books during twenty years after the end of the USSR even after the original reason that led to the sanctions (Jewish migration) had entirely disappeared.

When the post-Putin government tries to have sanctions lifted, it will be faced by a such a list of concessions that would be politically impossible to satisfy. Thus, sanctions, perhaps not in the exactly the same form, may be expected to last for the entire duration of what we call the long-term here (50 years). It seems obvious then that Russian long-term economic policy will have to follow two objectives: import substitution, and the shift of the economic activity away from Europe towards Asia. While these objectives are, I think, clear the realization will be extremely difficult. As before, consider the historical precedents. Soviet industrialization can be seen as an attempt to substitute imports by creating a strong domestic industrial base. That process however was based on two elements that would be missing in Russia’s future.

First, Soviet access to Western technology that was at the origin of most large Soviet complexes like the Krivoy Rog and the largest factory of tractors in the world in Tsaritsyn (later Stalingrad). The surplus extracted through collectivization, and hunger and death of millions, and even the gold taken from Orthodox churches, were used to purchase Western technology. There was never any doubt among the Bolsheviks, from Lenin to Trotsky to Stalin to Bukharin, that for the USSR to develop, it had to industrialize and to do so it needs to import technology from the more developed countries. (That conscience of relative underdevelopment of Russia was extremely strong among all Russian Marxists who were all modernizers.) The ability to import similarly advanced Western technology that could provide the basis for downstream import substitution, will not exist under the regime of sanctions. Therefore such technology would have to be invented locally.

There is, however, is a huge temporal break. Had anyone proposed import substitution approach in the 1990s, it would have been difficult to implement but not impossible: the USSR (and Russia) had at that time a broad industrial base (production of airplanes, cars, white goods; largest producer of steel etc.). The sector was not internationally competitive but, it could have been improved, and with right investments made competitive. But most of these industrial complexes have in the meantime been privatized and liquidated, and whatever was not, is technologically obsolete. In thirty years after the beginning of the “transition”, Russia has not been able to develop any technologically advanced industry except in the military area.

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“Putin just shot “King Dollar” in the head. We can see it in the financial markets, as the price of everything commodity related is going up relentlessly in dollar terms. ”

Fiat Currencies Are Going To “Fail Spectacularly” (Lawrence Lepard)

What just happened in the last two weeks is enormously important and misunderstood by many investors. The Russian invasion of Ukraine and the corresponding Western sanctions and seizure of Russian FX reserves are nothing short of a monetary earthquake. The last comparable event was Nixon’s abandonment of the gold standard in 1971. Russia, with the backing and support of China, just told the world that it is no longer going to sell its oil, gas and wheat for Western currencies which are programmed to debase. The West in its response just said to all countries around the world: “If you have foreign exchange reserves, held in our system, they are no longer safe if we disagree with your politics.” It is similar to what the Canadians did when they moved to seize the bank accounts of Canadians who had demonstrated support for the truckers without due process of law.

Both of these political moves are blatant advertisements for what I call “non state controlled money without counterparty risk”, like gold and bitcoin. If governments can weaponize their money when they do not like what you are doing, what is the natural defense? The US Dollar has been the reserve currency of the world since WW II and the Bretton Woods agreement. This has given the US an enormous advantage and subsidy from the rest of the world because everyone else needs to produce goods and services to obtain dollars and the US can simply produce dollars at no cost by printing them. Putin is now cast in the role of Charles de Gaulle who complained about the “exorbitant privilege” of the US with its dollar hegemony. As we all know, de Gaulle demanded gold in exchange for France’s US dollar FX surpluses and this outflow forced Nixon to close the gold window.

Recall that post this event, gold went from $35 per ounce to $800 per ounce (23x). Russia’s move will lead to a similar move in favor of gold. Putin could see that the US fiscal and monetary situation was becoming untenable and he decided to use this to create an existential threat to the US and the world financial system. He undoubtedly knows that the West has artificially suppressed the price of gold and that is why he has been building his gold reserves steadily for the past 20 years. Putin just shot “King Dollar” in the head. We can see it in the financial markets, as the price of everything commodity related is going up relentlessly in dollar terms.

Russia is long commodities, long gold and doesn’t need fiat currency. His debt to GDP ratio is low and taxes are low. If the world financial markets collapse on a relative basis, the position of Russia will be improved significantly. This is what I believe he is playing for. If investors do not recognize this they will be caught wrong footed as I believe many are today.

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Seeing the world through US eyes alone may not be sufficient anymore.

‘We Are in a New Cold War’ With China: Ex-US Assistant Secretary of State (ET)

The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and United States are engaged in a cold war, according to a former senior state department official. As such, the Chinese regime’s burgeoning alliance with Russia has broad implications for the future of the Indo-Pacific region. “People don’t really want to have to ponder things like global devastation, but it’s here and it’s with us,” David Stilwell, former Assistant Secretary of State for East Asia and Pacific Affairs and retired Air Force Brigadier General, told EpochTV’s “China Insider” program on March 10. “The PRC [People’s Republic of China] has nukes and are building out their nuclear arsenal considerably right now,” he said. “We are in a new Cold War.”

Stilwell said that China’s effective alliance with Russia, wherein the CCP has tacitly supported a war of aggression against Ukraine, had already drawn nations throughout the Indo-Pacific closer to the United States hardened their resolve against the CCP. The worsening ties between states like Japan and South Korea with China were unavoidable, Stilwell said, because of CCP leadership’s choice to give cover to Russia’s war in spite of the fact that China previously pledged to defend Ukraine from nuclear threats. “It’s unavoidable,” Stilwell said. “The PRC named themselves … in the negotiations with Russia going into the war. They declared themselves to be basically on board with the invasion of Ukraine and all those things.” “They can’t walk that back. That’s out there. It’s commitment. But, I have to think that China’s rethinking it given how poorly this has gone for the Russians.”

Stilwell said that this strategic rethink was important for CCP leader Xi Jinping’s plans to forcibly unite Taiwan with mainland China, and that Russian failures in Ukraine would likely render Chinese military strategists more cautious in their ambitions regarding Taiwan. The CCP’s initial goal for forcing the unification of Taiwan with the mainland was to be achieved by 2049, Stilwell said. Xi, however, appeared to advance that goal to 2035. U.S. military officials, meanwhile, have warned that it could happen as soon as 2027. Stilwell agreed with that assessment. He said that, should Xi obtain a third term as leader of the CCP later this year, Xi would likely try to solidify his personal legacy by taking Taiwan before that term ends in 2027.

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Sounds just like the west:

“..parents who were reluctant to vaccinate their children have faced pressure to comply. Some said they lost work bonuses or were given a talk by their supervisors. In other cases, their children faced punishment varying from losing honors or even getting barred from attending school..”

Children in China Diagnosed With Leukemia After Taking Chinese Vaccines (ET)

After receiving her first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, Li Jun’s 4-year-old developed a fever and coughs, which quickly subsided after intravenous therapy at the hospital. But after the second shot, the father could tell something was wrong. Swelling appeared around his daughter’s eyes and did not go away. For weeks, the girl complained about pains on her legs, where bruises started to emerge seemingly out of nowhere. In January, a few weeks after the second dose, the 4-year-old was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia. “My baby was perfectly healthy before the vaccine dose,” Li (an alias), from China’s north-central Gansu Province, told The Epoch Times. “I took her for a health check. Everything was normal.”

He is among hundreds of Chinese that belong to a social media group claiming to be suffering from or have a household member suffering from leukemia, developed after taking Chinese vaccines. Eight of them confirmed the situation when reached by The Epoch Times. Names of the interviewees have been withheld to protect their safety. The leukemia cases span across different age groups from all parts of China. But Li and others particularly pointed to a rise in patients from the younger age group in the last few months, coinciding with the regime’s push to inoculate children between 3 and 11 years old beginning last October.

Li’s daughter had her first injection in mid-November under the request of her kindergarten. She is now undergoing chemotherapy at the Lanzhou No. 2 People’s Hospital where at least 20 children are being treated for similar symptoms, most of them between the age of 3 and 8, according to Li. “Our doctor from the hospital told us that since November, the children coming to their hematology division to treat leukemia have doubled the previous years’ number and they are having a shortage of beds,” he said. Li claimed that at least eight children from Suzhou district, where he lives, have died recently from leukemia.

There had been some resistance from Chinese parents when the campaign to vaccinate children first rolled out. They expressed concern about the lack of data about the effects of Chinese vaccines on young people. The vaccines are supplied by two Chinese drugmakers, Sinopharm and Sinovac, which carry an efficacy rate of 79 percent and 50.4 percent, respectively, based on available data from trials conducted on adults. [..] But parents who were reluctant to vaccinate their children have faced pressure to comply. Some said they lost work bonuses or were given a talk by their supervisors. In other cases, their children faced punishment varying from losing honors or even getting barred from attending school, as in the case of Wang Long’s 10-year-old son.

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“It is a very hard statistic to massage since people are either dead or they’re not.”

Hospitals No Longer Required to Report COVID Deaths (Mercola)

With the end of the HHS COVID death reporting system, the only means of tracking COVID deaths will now rely on the collection of data from death certificates at the state level. However, as the unnamed official told the WSWS reporter: “… deaths are reported by the counties/states but the process is very slow and many coroners are actually not wanting to cite COVID as the reason, while hospitals rely on diagnoses.” This last part of the sentence may refer to the hospital incentives for a COVID diagnosis, which increases the potential it would be listed in the ICD codes that were communicated to the HHS. Although the CDC and HHS would like the data to remain hidden, a cost-benefit analysis by Stephanie Seneff, Ph.D., and independent researcher Kathy Dopp revealed the jab is deadlier than the infection in anyone under the age of 80.

The analysis looked at publicly available official data from the U.S. and U.K. for all age groups and compared all-cause mortality to the risk of dying from COVID-19. Seneff and Dopp wrote: “As of 6 February 2022, based on publicly available official UK and US data, all age groups under 50 years old are at greater risk of fatality after receiving a COVID-19 inoculation than an unvaccinated person is at risk of a COVID-19 death. “All age groups under 80 years old have virtually no benefit from receiving a COVID-19 inoculation, and the younger ages incur significant risk. This analysis is conservative because it ignores the fact that inoculation-induced adverse events such as thrombosis, myocarditis, Bell’s palsy, and other vaccine-induced injuries can lead to shortened life span.”

Their analysis is upheld by OneAmerica’s announcement that the death rate in working-age Americans from 18 to 64 years in the third quarter of 2021 was 40% higher than prepandemic levels. This finding is stunning since one of the most reliable data points we have is all-cause mortality. It is a very hard statistic to massage since people are either dead or they’re not. Their inclusion in the national death index database is based on one primary criterion — they’ve died — regardless of the cause. As noted in a (not peer-reviewed) study led by scientist Denis Rancourt, who looked at U.S. mortality between March 2020 and October 2021: “All-cause mortality by time is the most reliable data for detecting true catastrophic events causing death, and for gauging the population-level impact of any surge in deaths from any cause.”

South Australia

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“..a 9,751 percent raise from his proposed severance of $9.4 million in 2019..”

Moderna Approved a $926 Million Golden Parachute For Its CEO (DM)

The amount of money that Moderna’s CEO would get if the company is sold and he’s replaced is now a jaw-dropping $926 million, a 9,751 percent raise from his proposed severance of $9.4 million in 2019. Stephane Bancel’s ‘change-in-control’ package was approved at the end of last year by the Massachusetts-based company’s board of directors, CNBC reported. Most of the golden parachute – $922.5 million, to be exact – is in the form of stock, which has yo-yoed during the COVID-19 pandemic. The rest includes a cash payment of $1.5 million and a bonus of $2.5 million. Bancel, 49, who is already worth a reported $4.3 billion, would only get the money if the company is sold or merged and he loses his job in the process. Last year, he earned a combined $18.2 million, a 41 percent increase from 2020.


The French-born executive’s last known address is a three-bedroom, 1,537-square-foot apartment in Boston worth an estimated $1.2 million, according to Zillow. Things have changed a lot for Moderna since the start of the pandemic in early 2020. It went from losing $747 million that year to making $12.2 billion in 2021, largely from sales of its two-dose vaccine, its only commercially available product. The biotech company is also developing shots for the flu and other infectious disease. Much of Bancel’s sky-high parachute is tied to Moderna’s stocks, but share prices have gone up and down during the pandemic, making it hard to determine how much they’ll be worth if and when Bancel cashes them out. Moderna shares reached a record high of $497.49 each on August 10, 2021, before tumbling to $253.98 by December 31. On Thursday, one share was worth $139.52.

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meme war 3

 

 

 

 

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Mar 112022
 


Pablo Picasso Three women at the edge of the beach 1924

 

The Sanction Backlash Will Push The ‘West’ To Accept Russia’s Demands (MoA)
Who Will Denazify The Ukraine? (Dmitry Orlov)
The Opinion Of A Professional About The Special Operation In Ukraine (Dubrovsky)
Ukraine Biolab Watchtower (Malone)
WHO Told Ukraine To Destroy ‘High-Threat Pathogens’ In Labs (ZH)
Moscow Retaliates Against Western Sanctions With Export Bans (R.)
Russia To Ban Fertilizer Exports To ‘Not Friendly’ Countries (ZH)
Russia Denies Bombing Maternity Hospital in Mariupol: ‘Fake News’ (ET)
Ukraine Worked With Democrats Against Trump in 2016 to Stop Putin (Sperry)
How Poland Avoided Hot Potato Of Being Dragged By US Into War With Russia (PM)
Germany Reactivates Coal Power Plants Amid Russian Gas Supply Threats (EuA)
Congress Inserts over 4,000 Pork Earmarks in Spending Bill (Turley)
Who Changed the Conclusions of a Paper that Could Have Saved Millions? (FLCCC)
US Dollar Being Used as “Instrument of War,” It’s the Endgame – Jim Rogers (SR)

 

 

 

 

WHO
https://twitter.com/i/status/1501879258079244289

 

 

Tulsi on Nuland

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hubris.

The Sanction Backlash Will Push The ‘West’ To Accept Russia’s Demands (MoA)

President Biden has blamed Russia for the price increase that will inevitably follow. I don’t believe that mid-term voters will accept that reasoning. European countries can not follow that step as their economies depend of imports of oil and gas from Russia and will continue to do so for years to come. In a move that must have been quite humiliating for the White House the leaders of Saudi Arabia and the UAE declined to take calls from the U.S. president. They want the U.S. to designate the Houthi movement in Yemen, which they have been unsuccessful to suppress, a terrorist group: One hopes that the Biden administration does not fall for these disgusting bribery schemes but he has backed himself into a corner, cutting off Russian oil to punish Putin for a humanitarian crisis in Ukraine, with no alternative but to horsetrade with autocrats over the fate of Yemenis a half a world away.

If this is geopolitics, heaven forgive us. I don’t think that the above is the only request the Saudis and UAE leaders will have. They are now in a situation in which they can demand ever more. Likewise humiliating is the administration’s opening of talks with Venezuela which it had sanctioned all around in its attempt to regime change the country. Caracas has released two U.S. nationals from prison. It is willing to talk. But before providing oil to the U.S. market it will demand the lifting of all sanctions and the return of all its assets the U.S. and UK have confiscated. Biden will have difficulties to find a Congress majority in support of such steps. The return of the nuclear deal with Iran, which would enable more oil output, hangs in balance as Russia demands sanction exemptions for its trade with Iran.

The U.S. had attempted to press Poland to deliver its old Mig-29 fighter jets to the Ukraine. In Russia’s eyes that would have been a direct Polish aggression against it. Warsaw found a smart way to avoid that. It offered to deliver the jets to a U.S. airbase in Germany. The tar baby would thereby stick to the U.S. itself. The Pentagon declined to accept that. The jet transfer is now most likely dead. The U.S. and Europe are only starting to feel the secondary consequences of the all out economic war they hastily initiated against Russia. The war will cause recessions not only in Russia but also all over the ‘west’. This while Russia has yet to announce its counter sanctions. There are many steps Russia could take to hurt the ‘west’ by withholding this or that resource. It is likely to start slowly to then increase the pressure step by step.


Cable from 2008 written by #CIA director William J. Burns, then US ambassador to Moscow

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“..the Ukrainian regime blithely trod across a very well established Russian red line that was guaranteed to trigger a military response.”

Who Will Denazify The Ukraine? (Dmitry Orlov)

Short answer: the Ukrainians will. Long answer: let me walk you down a very short memory lane, merely 16 days long, starting from February 22, 2022. On that day, the majority of Ukrainian forces were massed deep inside the territories of Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics—the two statelets populated by Russians, many of them Russian passport-holders. The Ukrainian forces were within striking range of their capital cities and (as recently obtained official documents prove) were planning an all-out attack on them. That would have been an act of genocide which Russia would have had no choice but to try to stop.

Since the Ukrainian regime does not dare to do anything major without first receiving an “all clear” signal from Washington, this attack would have been on strategy with Washington’s goals, which, perfectly clearly, were to mire Russia in a Ukrainian civil war. This war would in turn provide the rationale for international isolation which would crush Russia’s economy and force it to once again provide its natural resources to the West for almost nothing. Were this plan to fail, the West would collapse. The way it looks now, this plan is failing. I will return to this subject in a little while; by then the situation will have become clearer to a few more people. As people go through the inevitable denial-anger-bargaining sequence, it is best to hang back until the bargaining part is reached; only then does reasoned discussion become possible.

While the Ukrainian regime was frustrated in its efforts to join NATO by the fact that it does not control its own territory, it in fact surrendered the Ukraine to NATO forces, allowing NATO to order its military around and turning itself over to NATO’s use, thus bringing NATO within striking range of Moscow and driving NATO’s expansion east along the same route used by previous Western invaders—Napoleon and Hitler. Thus, the Ukrainian regime blithely trod across a very well established Russian red line that was guaranteed to trigger a military response. Given the vast disproportion in military strength, this was a delusional, suicidal move. To top all of this off, at the Munich security conference held this February the (former?) Ukrainian president Zelensky professed his desire to develop nuclear weapons with which to attack Russia.

Note that the Ukraine had sufficient nuclear materials, technologies and knowhow, inherited from the USSR, to rush through such a development program, especially if with US help. Although this would directly violate the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (“non-nuclear-weapon states agree never to acquire nuclear weapons”), he did not get any pushback from the assorted Western luminaries assembled there. Thus the Ukrainian regime thus did everything necessary to fashion itself into an immediate existential threat to Russia, sealing its fate.

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Via the Saker.

.. the honorable duty to drown Donbass in blood at the beginning of March. We beat them to it by a week or two

The Opinion Of A Professional About The Special Operation In Ukraine (Dubrovsky)

This is a war unfamiliar to us veterans. Especially when the sky is under your full control, airfields are packed with attack aircraft and bombers, operational and tactical missile systems are in service, there is a lot of heavy artillery. Now it has become clear even to civilians: the correct name for what is happening truly is “a special military operation for denazification.” And the demilitarization of Nezalezhnaya was completed by the end of the third day. The APU, as a single, manageable and effective structure, has ceased to exist. Today, there are dozens of groups of different numbers isolated from each other, hiding in cities and towns. No centralized supply, no air support, no approach of reinforcements. They are not able to act within the framework of any plans of the Ukrainian General Staff. Just crowds of armed men with orders to stand to the death.

The main groups “North” and “East” were beheaded and deprived of command — these are 22 brigades, which had been entrusted with the honorable duty to drown Donbass in blood at the beginning of March. We beat them to it by a week or two, starting our own special operation. Now 150 thousand people (together with national soldiers) are marinated in “cauldrons”, cut off from each other. For a second — this was done by smaller Russian forces… and in five days. There is no organized resistance in other operational areas. Separate parts of the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU), national battalions, sabotage groups. Everyone acts at their discretion, with varying degrees of activity. There is no way to move in columns, regroup, replenish ammunition, fuel, equipment even in local warehouses, everything is systematically destroyed by high-precision weapons and aircraft.

In a week or two, 80% of the AFU will turn into detachments completely devoid of ammunition, fuel, medicines, and food. Mentally and physically exhausted, without a unified command, goals and objectives. For the army, this is a terrible thing – despondency and decay. Especially for the Ukrainian, which is held by fear, propped up by Bandera detachments. Servicemen fear for the fate of their families in the rear.

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“I believe that there is a significant risk that the Russian government has obtained documents or other evidence that (at a minimum) one or more of these laboratories have had biological materials the existence of which is likely to prove embarrassing to the United States. ”

Ukraine Biolab Watchtower (Malone)

Here’s my “assuming best intention” current “working hypothesis”: USA DoD/DTRA partnered with the government of Ukraine to (at a minimum) support collection, storage and monitoring of infectious biological agents and toxins by researchers in Ukraine, and there seems to have been some component of personnel training and facilities engineering involved with this. US State Department via the Embassy in Ukraine announced this DoD/DTRA effort in a transparent manner via a readily available web page. If I were working as an analyst for the Russian government, paid to perform and enable risk assessment, I would be skeptical that the US DoD/DTRA effort was limited to just collecting and archiving biological samples, and I would have to conclude that there is significant risk that these facilities were involved in (at a minimum) “dual purpose” research.

“Dual purpose” is a euphemism for “could be used to develop defensive capabilities or could be used to develop offensive capabilities”. Clearly, whether in sincerity or for propaganda purposes (time will tell if they provide the documentation and receipts), the Russian government is stating that the activities of these laboratories included bioweapon research which was coordinated with US DoD/DTRA. Prior to invasion of Ukraine, the government of Russia signaled that the presence of these DTRA-sponsored “biolabs” in this region was perceived as a threat to Russian national security and biosecurity. Again, if I were a Russian analyst, I would likely conclude that these laboratories represent a threat to national security. Based on information available to me, the US Government does not seem to have made any attempt to assure the government of Russia that these laboratories were performing benign activities.

One action which might have mitigated Russian concerns would have been to allow unannounced inspections, much as US and NATO have insisted on in the case of foreign nuclear enrichment or reactor programs. In my professional opinion, based on the language employed by Under Secretary of State Victoria Nuland, I believe that there is a significant risk that the Russian government has obtained documents or other evidence that (at a minimum) one or more of these laboratories have had biological materials the existence of which is likely to prove embarrassing to the United States. The language used appears to my ear to imply that there are biological materials the existence of which could damage US strategic and tactical geopolitical interests.

It is likely that the “chain of custody” or veracity of any evidence which the Russian government may present to support their case will not be clean, and that there will be a strong effort by western media and information sources (social media, tech) to delegitimize any communication by Russia (as a government) and by any persons (Russian or otherwise) who present or attempt to discuss such communication. Including myself. It is highly likely that management of any information concerning this topic is already being globally handled by the Trusted News Initiative organization, and that obtaining or discussing unfiltered and unprocessed “raw” information will soon not be possible. In other words, in my opinion, this is another topic that we will never be able to get to the bottom of, and we will never be able to discern something akin to objective “truth”. Best we can hope for is some sort of approximation of truth that is sort of like a kalidescope image viewed in a hall of mirrors.

Soviet bioweapons

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Why are there ‘High-Threat Pathogens’ inn one of the world’s most corrupt and instable nations, and how did they get them?

WHO Told Ukraine To Destroy ‘High-Threat Pathogens’ In Labs (ZH)

The World Health Organization advised Ukraine to destroy ‘high-threat pathogens’ in the country’s public health laboratories in order to prevent “any potential spills” that might infect the population during the Russian invasion, Reuters reports. “As part of this work, WHO has strongly recommended to the Ministry of Health in Ukraine and other responsible bodies to destroy high-threat pathogens to prevent any potential spills,” said the UN agency. The report comes after a tense back-and-forth between US and Russian officials over “dangerous” biolabs in the country – with Russia, and then China, accusing the US military of involvement in Ukraine’s biolabs.

On Wednesday, Russian foreign ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova repeated a longstanding claim that the United States operates a biowarfare lab in Ukraine, an accusation that has been repeatedly denied by Washington and Kyiv. Zakharova said that documents unearthed by Russian forces in Ukraine showed “an emergency attempt to erase evidence of military biological programmes” by destroying lab samples. -Reuters The US has denied the allegations – issuing (among other things) a Thursday statement that “The United States does not have chemical or biological weapons labs in Ukraine,” adding that America “does not develop or possess chemical and biological weapons anywhere.”

On Tuesday, US Undersecretary of State Victoria Nuland acknowledged that Ukraine “has biological research facilities, which, in fact, we are now quite concerned Russian troops, Russian forces may be seeking to gain control of. So we are working with the Ukrainians on how they can prevent any of those research materials from falling into the hands of Russian forces should they approach.” Nuland’s answer made clear that whatever is inside Ukraine’s biolabs is a serious concern, however it should be noted that there’s no public evidence of bioweapons, nor did the WHO statement make reference to biowarfare – which is a separate issue from whether the laboratories contained, or contain, dangerous pathogens which could be used in a bioweapon.

https://twitter.com/i/status/1502094871217287169

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“..telecom, medical, auto, agricultural, electrical and tech equipment, as well as some forestry products..”

Moscow Retaliates Against Western Sanctions With Export Bans (R.)

Russia sought on Thursday to retaliate against Western sanctions imposed over its invasion of Ukraine by banning exports of certain goods and agricultural commodities. Exporting telecom, medical, auto, agricultural, electrical and tech equipment, as well as some forestry products, will be banned until the end of 2022. “These measures are a logical response to those imposed against Russia and are aimed at ensuring uninterrupted functioning of key sectors of the economy,” the economy ministry said. Further measures could include restricting foreign ships from entering Russian ports and allowing Russian airlines to register jets leased from Western firms as their own property, the government said.

Interfax news agency cited a source familiar with legislation being prepared as saying Russia may temporarily ban grain exports to a group of ex-Soviet countries forming part of the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) from March 15 to August 31, as well as sugar exports outside the EEU area. The measures come after Western sanctions in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine that threaten to cripple Russia’s energy-dependent economy. Western companies have pulled out of Russia en masse as the United States, European Union and Britain imposed sanctions aimed at curbing Moscow’s access to funding. In response, a government commission on Wednesday approved the first step towards nationalising assets of foreign firms that leave the country.

The proposal to restrict foreign ships’ entry into Russian ports comes after Britain last week banned from its ports all Russian-operated ships. The European Union has yet to provide clarity on the prospect of a similar ban by the bloc.

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There are no replacements. Not for the combined wheat exports of Russia and Ukraine, and not for fertilizer.

Russia To Ban Fertilizer Exports To ‘Not Friendly’ Countries (ZH)

Russia’s war on Ukraine is continuing to boost food prices. While the US and European countries are engaged in economic warfare against Moscow, it appears Russia’s turn to strike back has emerged. On Thursday, Russian Minister of Industry and Trade Denis Manturov said Russia decided to suspend fertilizer exports. This comes when global food prices are at record highs, and European fertilizer makers are struggling to produce nutrients ahead of the spring growing season, increasing global food inflation risks. President Vladimir Putin said the fertilizer export ban was a move to ensure stable domestic food prices. This is another sign of growing protectionism worldwide as countries grapple with soaring food prices. Putin said fertilizer markets are deteriorating, making food a lot more expensive.

Making matters worse, Interfax, an independent Russian news agency, reported earlier that Moscow is considering retaliatory economic measures to ban exports of certain agricultural products to countries outside the Eurasian Economic Union. Interfax said Moscow could temporarily ban grain exports to the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) and ban sugar exports beyond the EEU. This may result in declining food supplies for those countries and soaring food costs. Add this to the fertilizer ban and Europe and maybe the West is headed for a major food crisis. Possible Russian retaliatory measures follow a series of Western sanctions on Russia, which have collapsed the ruble, locked the central bank out of a large chunk of its foreign-currency savings, and crushed its ability to trade with the outside world by removing certain Russian banks from SWIFT.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has been quoted well before the invasion of Ukraine of the need to strengthen an emerging multipolar world order. “It is important to maintain and boost mutually respectful, constructive and effective cooperation globally, as well as to strengthen the emerging multipolar world order that consists of independent centers of economic growth and political influence, which certainly includes BRICS,” Putin emphasized.

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The combo of “War” and “children” (let alone babies) is only fake news 99.9% of the time.

Russia Denies Bombing Maternity Hospital in Mariupol: ‘Fake News’ (ET)

Russia asserted Thursday that the claim from Ukraine that Moscow forces were responsible for the bombing of a maternity hospital in the port city of Mariupol was “fake news.” “That’s how fake news is born,” Dmitry Polyanskiy, Russia’s first deputy permanent representative to the United Nations, said on Twitter. He said that Russia had said in a statement on March 7 that the hospital in Mariupol “has been turned into a military object” from which Ukrainian radicals were firing. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia shared Polyanskiy’s statement on its Twitter page. The March 7 statement was delivered by Russian Representative Vassily Nebenzia at the U.N. Security Council.

“Ukrainian radicals show their true face more distinctly by the day,” Nebenzia said. “Locals reports [sic] that Ukraine’s Armed Forces kicked out personnel of natal hospital #1 of the city of Mariupol and set up a firing site within the facility.” Russia has also previously denied targeting civilians or civilian infrastructure as part of its campaign in Ukraine. Ukrainian officials claimed that Russian aircraft bombed the children’s hospital on Wednesday, after which Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky accused Russia of carrying out genocide. “Mariupol. Direct strike of Russian troops at the maternity hospital. People, children are under the wreckage,” Zelensky wrote on Twitter. “Atrocity! How much longer will the world be an accomplice ignoring terror?”

After the strike, the Mayor of Mariupol, Vadym Boichenko, called for a no-fly zone to be imposed over Ukraine. “Today I am asking the global community for help. Close the sky over Ukraine. Our will has not been broken, we will fight to the end,” Boichenko said in a video message posted to Telegram. “We have motivated soldiers and officers who defend our homeland. But today we need support.”

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Good deep digging.

Ukraine Worked With Democrats Against Trump in 2016 to Stop Putin (Sperry)

Six years ago, before Russia’s full-scale invasion of their country, the Ukrainians bet that a Hillary Clinton presidency would offer better protection from Russian President Vladimir Putin, even though he had invaded Crimea during the Obama-Biden administration, whose Russian policies Clinton vowed to continue. Working with both the Obama administration and the Clinton campaign, Ukrainian government officials intervened in the 2016 race to help Clinton and hurt Donald Trump in a sweeping and systematic foreign influence operation that’s been largely ignored by the press. The improper, if not illegal, operation was run chiefly out of the Ukrainian Embassy in Washington, where officials worked hand-in-glove with a Ukrainian-American activist and Clinton campaign operative to attack the Trump campaign.

The Obama White House was also deeply involved in an effort to groom their own favored leader in Ukraine and then work with his government to dig up dirt on – and even investigate — their political rival. Ukrainian and Democratic operatives also huddled with American journalists to spread damaging information on Trump and his advisers – including allegations of illicit Russian-tied payments that, though later proved false, forced the resignation of his campaign manager Paul Manafort. The embassy actually weighed a plan to get Congress to investigate Manafort and Trump and stage hearings in the run-up to the election. As it worked behind the scenes to undermine Trump, Ukraine also tried to kneecap him publicly. Ukraine’s ambassador took the extraordinary step of attacking Trump in an Op-Ed article published in The Hill, an influential U.S. Capitol newspaper, while other top Ukrainian officials slammed the GOP candidate on social media.

At first glance, it was a bad bet as Trump upset Clinton. But by the end of his first year in office, Trump had supplied Ukrainians what the Obama administration refused to give them: tank-busting Javelin missiles and other lethal weapons to defend themselves against Russian incursions. Putin never invaded on Trump’s watch. Instead, he launched an all-out invasion during another Democratic administration – one now led by President Biden, Barack Obama’s former Vice President, whose Secretary of State last year alarmed Putin by testifying, “We support Ukraine’s membership in NATO.” Biden boasted he’d go “toe to toe” with Putin, but that didn’t happen as the autocrat amassed tanks along Ukraine’s border in response to the NATO overtures.

The Ukrainian mischief is part of Special Counsel John Durham’s broader inquiry – now a full-blown criminal investigation with grand jury indictments – into efforts to falsely target Trump as a Kremlin conspirator in 2016 and beyond. Sources say Durham has interviewed several Ukrainians, but it’s not likely the public will find out exactly what he’s learned about the extent of Ukraine’s meddling in the election until he releases his final report, which sources say could be several months away.

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Well played Poland. Now Kamala’s there. WIll they change their stance?

How Poland Avoided Hot Potato Of Being Dragged By US Into War With Russia (PM)

The US’ attempt to get Poland to enter into war against Russia on their behalf has stalled, as Poland played, and won, a game of hot potato with Russian MiG fighter planes. On Human Events Daily, Jack Posobiec discussed how Poland managed to avoid being used as a pawn of war between the US and Russia. “We talk about the NATO hot potato when it comes to the Russian MiG, the Russian made MiGs from Poland. Poland said oh, we’re going to give them to the US,” Posobiec said. The US asked Poland to send fighter jets to Ukraine per Ukraine’s request for MiG fighters, which their pilots are trained to use. Poland said they would turn over the jets to the US at the Ramstein Air Force Base in Germany, the US could do whatever they want with them. The US then would have to take those jets from Ramstein to Germany, piloted by US military personnel.


“The US said ‘no, no, no. Just give them to Ukraine.’ And [Poland] said ‘no we’ll give them to you, you can paint the US flag on them.’ And [the US] said ‘no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, that’s too risky. We can’t do that.’ “And Poland said, ‘Well, if you can’t do that, if it’s too risky for you. Why isn’t it too risky for us to do it?'” This would have been a distinct escalation to the war in Ukraine, as it would mean that the US was flying fighter jets into Ukraine. The US wanted Poland to bear that burden of escalation. The US rejected the offer of the planes, though on Sunday Biden’s Secretary of State Anthony Blinken had said that yes, the planes transfer from Poland to Ukraine was given the “green light” by the US. But Blinken would not “green light” those same planes being given by the US to Ukraine. [..] “The United States government is trying to frame Poland for starting World War Three and we cannot overlook this,” Posobiec said.

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Cui bono?

Germany Reactivates Coal Power Plants Amid Russian Gas Supply Threats (EuA)

As Germany closes its last nuclear reactors, it is also reactivating old coal power plants to ensure electricity supply security amid Russian threats to turn off the gas tap. Germany’s attempt to simultaneously phase out nuclear and coal power just got significantly more complicated. Once envisaged as a transition fuel on the way to renewables, fossil gas is being reconsidered in Germany after Russia invaded Ukraine. “Coal will play a crucial role,” said Olaf Lies, the energy minister of Lower Saxony. “That we choose this phrase once again is certainly not entirely self-evident given the country’s plan to phase out coal by 2030,” he said during a press conference on Tuesday (8 March).

As Russia wages war in Ukraine and threatens to stop pumping gas through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline, Germany is experiencing a rude awakening. “We know, and we have to admit it, that in the last 20 years, we have manoeuvred ourselves into ever greater dependence on fossil energy imports from Russia,” said Vice-Chancellor Robert Habeck, who was speaking alongside Lies. “This is not a good state of affairs. All the efforts of the federal government, indeed of the country, are aimed at reducing this dependency as quickly as possible,” he added. In effect, that will imply firing Germany’s coal power plants back up. “If we want to be more independent, we will have to operate with coal,” Lies said, putting in clear terms what Habeck was reluctant to say outright.

Lies was speaking at a conference bringing together the energy ministers of Germany’s 17 states, who were meeting with federal minister Robert Habeck during an extraordinary consultation session. Germany currently has around 45 GW of coal power capacity in place. While some has been turned off, part of it is being held in reserve to ensure the country’s security of supply.

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“It is a familiar tactic on pork spending. You can hide an entire drove of pigs behind a single redeeming budget item.”

Congress Inserts over 4,000 Pork Earmarks in Spending Bill (Turley)

For years, Congress has dispensed with the pretense of informed legislative process when it comes to major bills and appropriations. The new $1.5 trillion omnibus spending bill, however, took the notion of blind legislating to a disgraceful degree. Democratic leadership dumped the almost 3,000 page bill on the members (and the public) on Wednesday with only a couple days to review the massive spending. That includes over 4,000 pork projects in earmarks. According to the Hill, Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D., N.Y.) alone has a long list of earmarks for his state ahead of his reelection bid. That includes 59 earmarks totaling nearly $80 million in the transportation and housing and urban development (HUD) section alone.

While Congress disavowed earmarks, the pork-ridden bill shows that both parties have abandoned the pledge. Spending trillions in the last couple years appears to have removed any sense of fiscal responsibility or accountability. We are now over $30 trillion in debt so what are a few pork items — or in Schumer’s case 142 such items. (Some argue that debt is really only $22 trillion and that debt does not matter). It was a clever move at a perfect time. With Ukraine raging and people traumatized over the war, leadership like Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., Cal.) kept bringing questions back to $14 billion in aid for Ukraine. Members stressed that there was no time to waste — or in this case to read — before voting. It is a familiar tactic on pork spending. You can hide an entire drove of pigs behind a single redeeming budget item.

What is most alarming is the level of duplicity. The bill was withheld by leadership to guarantee little time for the members, let alone the public, from seriously considering the specific expenditures. It shows utter contempt for the concept of public deliberation and debate in the legislation. One must accept the word of the leadership and vote in the blind. In the meantime, even before this package, the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget predicted that the debt-to-GDP ratio is at 101% and the total federal debt, including intragovernmental debt, may exceed 120%. Even if debt does not matter (as some have claimed) most citizens oppose pork barrel spending.

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Now we know who.

Who Changed the Conclusions of a Paper that Could Have Saved Millions? (FLCCC)

First, let’s set the stage: — Over one year ago, there were ample peer-reviewed, randomized controlled trials that provided strong evidence on ivermectin’s efficacy as a treatment for COVID in every disease phase. — A paper considering these many studies was written by lead author Dr. Andrew Hill at the University of Liverpool for the World Health Organization’s COVID Guideline Development Group. Hill was an early and vigorous proponent for ivermectin. His paper showed that ivermectin could reduce deaths by 75% if used throughout the world. — Inexplicably, just days before its publication, the paper appeared on a pre-print server, with its conclusions changed. Instead of concluding that ivermectin—one of the world’s safest and most inexpensive drugs— should be rolled out globally, it now concluded that more studies on ivermectin were needed before it could be recommended worldwide.


Given the totality of scientific evidence for ivermectin, it was a stunning—actually shocking—reversal by Dr. Hill. —In an urgent Zoom call to Dr. Hill initiated by Dr. Tess Lawrie, Director of the Evidence-based Medicine Consultancy, Dr. Hill admitted to her that one of his study’s sponsors, Unitaid, had a say in the conclusions of his paper. But he would not divulge the name(s) of those who altered the paper’s conclusions. But now, “The Digger” on Substack (aka producer/director Phil Harper) has revealed the name of the person who could have edited the paper’s conclusions—which led to the WHO’s non-recommendation of the use of ivermectin. That decision could have led to the unnecessary deaths of millions across the world.

Mr. Harper studied the PDF of the paper, wanting to learn the identity of its “ghost” author. “The hope was that some artifact on the PDF would reveal something, maybe a font was different, maybe there was a hidden comment, maybe some tracked changes had been saved to the document,” said Harper. “None of those lines of inquiry came to anything.” Then it came to him. Was it in the PDF’s metadata? “Sometimes it’s the most obvious of things,” Harper writes. “The ‘v1_stamped’ version of the paper did indeed have metadata. It even had author information inside the metadata. Expecting to see Andrew Hill listed as the author, instead, I saw a name I recognized. Andrew Owen. “Unless someone used his computer, Andrew Owen has his digital fingerprint on the Andrew Hill paper.”


As it turns out, Andrew Owen is a Professor of Pharmacology & Therapeutics and co-Director of the Centre of Excellence in Long-acting Therapeutics (CELT) at the University of Liverpool. He is also scientific advisor to the WHO’s COVID-19 Guideline Development Group. Just days before Dr. Hill’s paper was to be published, a $40M grant from Unitaid, the paper’s sponsor, was given to CELT —of which Owen is the project lead. “The $40 million contract was actually a commercial agreement between Unitaid, the University of Liverpool and Tandem Nano Ltd (a start-up company that commercializes ‘Solid Lipid Nanoparticle’ delivery mechanisms)— for which Andrew Owen is a top shareholder,” says Harper.

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He blames it all on Victoria Nuland.

US Dollar Being Used as “Instrument of War,” It’s the Endgame – Jim Rogers (SR)

“The U.S. dollar will die,” and it will fall from its position as the world’s reserve currency sooner than expected, says Jim Rogers, best-selling author of “Hot Commodities.” In his first video appearance since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Rogers tells our Daniela Cambone that Ukraine being inducted into NATO is the underlying cause of Russia’s actions. “Now we’re paying a gigantic price,” for the actions taken by U.S. elected officials, he says, and when the war is over, Russian stocks will be an undervalued opportunity. Other sovereign nations are frantically “coming up with something to compete with the U.S. dollar” due to economic sanctions being ramped up in recent years, Rogers asserts. “I cannot see the world having 100% computer money,” he concludes, saying governments will use it to control the masses.

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Psaki oil

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kharkiv

 

 

Rockefeller

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

Mar 092022
 


Salvador Dali The ghost of Vermeer of Delft which can be used as a table 1934

 

Ukraine Crisis Is Unleashing ‘Hell On Earth’ For Food Prices (BBC)
What Is Going On In Negotiations Between Russia And Ukraine? (JPost)
Sanctions On Russia Will Strengthen Putin’s Grip (Ehrlich)
The Casualties of Empire (Lawrence)
Ukraine and the Global American Empire (Eugyp)
China, Big Tech, Big Pharma and Elites – The Four Horsemen (Angelova)
Saudi, Emirati Leaders Decline Calls With Biden During Ukraine Crisis (WSJ)
Biden’s US Oil Embargo (WSJ)
Spike Protein Fibrosis Syndrome (Chesnut)
Now Let’s Do the US Oligarchs (Eskow)
Iran Plots To Assassinate Bolton, Biden Admin Resists Public Indictments (DW)
Where’s The Outrage Over Trudeau’s Trip To Britain? (Stannus)
The Longtime ‘Zelig’ of American Scandals Who ‘Crossfired’ Trump (RCI)
How the Senate is Poised to Codify Censorship of Social Media (Turley)

 

 

 

 

UFC

 

 

 

 

Oliver Stone, Nuland, Robert Parry, Yanukovich

 

 

The Monastiraki kitchen is keeping a close eye on what happens with food prices, of course. When you make 5-600 meals per week, you have to. Predictions of quadrupling prices make us nervous. We would like to store more food, while it’s still affordable, but the space we have for that must first be renovated. That will cost so much, however, that I said we cannot afford to take the money away from buying food. It’s too risky right now. I’ll write an article on it soon, as we know more details.

Ukraine Crisis Is Unleashing ‘Hell On Earth’ For Food Prices (BBC)

The head of the World Food Programme, David Beasley, has warned the conflict in Ukraine could send global food prices soaring, with a catastrophic impact on the world’s poorest. Ukraine and Russia are both major exporters of basic foodstuffs, and the war has already hit crop production, driving up prices Mr Beasley said it was putting more people at risk of starvation worldwide. “Just when you think hell on earth can’t get any worse, it does,” he said. Russia and Ukraine, once dubbed “the breadbasket of Europe”, export about a quarter of the world’s wheat and half of its sunflower products, like seeds and oil. Ukraine also sells a lot of corn globally. Analysts have warned that war could impact the production of grains and even double global wheat prices.


Mr Beasley told BBC World Service’s Business Daily programme that the number of people facing potential starvation worldwide had already risen from 80 million to 276 million in four years prior to Russia’s invasion, due to what he calls a “perfect storm” of conflict, climate change and coronavirus. He said certain countries could be particularly affected by the current crisis, due to the high proportion of grains they currently import from the Black Sea region. “The country of Lebanon, 50%, give or take, of their grains, come from Ukraine. Yemen, Syria, Tunisia – and I could go on and on – depend on the country of Ukraine as a breadbasket,” he said. “So you’re going from being a breadbasket to now, literally, having to hand out bread to them. It’s just an incredible reverse of reality.”

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“Kyiv has not shared with the West what has been going on in the negotiations since they do not want to damper the worldwide sense of emergency.”

What Is Going On In Negotiations Between Russia And Ukraine? (JPost)

Three days after Prime Minister Naftali Bennett’s meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow, the details are beginning to emerge. According to people who were privy to details about the meeting, the current situation is that Russia has offered a “final” version of its offer to end the crisis, which Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky needs to accept or decline. The proposal was deemed “difficult” but not “impossible,” the sources said. It is worse than what Zelensky would have gotten before the invasion but “the gaps between the sides are not great.” Putin ordered his forces to halt – and the command for a ceasefire to be enacted was given – in order to wait for Zelensky’s decision, the sources said. If Ukraine’s president rejects the proposal, French President Emmanuel Macron’s assumption that “the worst is before us” is prone to happen.

In that scenario, Putin will order his army to put the pedal to the metal and change the face of Ukraine. Zelensky is torn, the sources said. On the one hand, he is enjoying immense popularity and has become the perfect Che Guevara. On the other hand, he knows full well what the Argentinian revolutionary and guerrilla leader’s end was. Zelensky can fortify Ukraine’s independence but will have to pay a heavy price, the sources said. Assumptions are that he will be forced to give up the contested Donbas region, officially recognize the pro-Russian dissidents in Ukraine, pledge that Ukraine will not join NATO, shrink his army and declare neutrality. If he declines the proposal, the outcome may be terrible: thousands, perhaps tens of thousands of Ukrainians will die and there is a high probability that his country will completely lose its independence.


According to the sources knowledgeable about the content of the talks, Bennett’s trip to Moscow was not meant to mediate between the sides and no arbitration proposal was officially offered. Rather, the trip was meant to get a sense of what Putin’s position was, what his state of mind was and what his redlines were, and report them to the West. The real negotiations, according to the sources, are happening directly between Russia and Ukraine and are much more serious than what the West has been saying. Kyiv has not shared with the West what has been going on in the negotiations since they do not want to damper the worldwide sense of emergency. In reality, however, the Ukrainians know full well what Putin’s demands are and they know they will have to make a dramatic decision in the coming days.

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Thread.

“Some Russians I know who had favorable opinions of the West now feel like they are *personally* under attack. They resent being the targets of economic warfare.”

Sanctions On Russia Will Strengthen Putin’s Grip (Ehrlich)

The West thinks sanctions are hurting Putin. They have it backwards: His power inside Russia is surging. A thread on what analysts are getting so wrong. Objectively, Putin’s poll numbers have improved since the lead-up to and onset of the war. This was predictable; a “rally ’round the flag” effect is common for wartime president. In less than 2 weeks, his approval rating spiked 10 points from 61% to 71%. Image Many in the West are predicting that this effect will be short lived. Analysts think that Russians will sour on Putin if the economic situation in the country continues to worsen. But there’s a gaping hole in their theory: Russians don’t think the war was Putin’s fault. This is difficult for people in the West to understand.

Here, we see the invasion of Ukraine as a war of choice. In Russia, the average citizen sees the conflict as a war of necessity one forced onto Russia by NATO and Ukraine. This was confirmed before the war in research by the Levada Center, a non-governmental polling firm widely trusted in the West. More than 66% of Russians blamed the conflict on America, NATO, or Ukraine. Only 4% said the conflict was Russia’s fault. Because Russians do not believe Putin was responsible for the war, they naturally do not blame him for sanctions. Citizens of the United States did not blame FDR for economic hardships like rationing during WW2. Russians have a similar perspective on wartime hardships today. If anything, the perceived cruelty of the current sanctions is making the West *more* of a villain in Russia.


Some Russians I know who had favorable opinions of the West now feel like they are *personally* under attack. They resent being the targets of economic warfare. One of the most egregious examples is the attempt to block international calls into Russia. Today, many Russians overseas are having trouble reaching their families at home. This makes them angry but not at Putin. It makes them hate the West. [..] Putin’s base sees the Western pullout from Russia as an opportunity to purge the country of foreign influence. They *like* the idea of Western companies selling their stakes in state industries. They *like* replacing Western brands with Russian and Chinese substitutes. I’m not arguing that these replacements will be smooth. They won’t stop Russia’s economy from heading for a deep recession. But nationalist sentiments inside Russia right now are so strong, that’s a price Russians are willing to pay.

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“..instigate a long-running conflict that bogs down Russian forces and leaves Ukrainians to wage an insurgency that cannot possibly succeed.”

The Casualties of Empire (Lawrence)

The news reports come in daily from Moscow, Kiev and the Western capitals: how many dead since Russia began its intervention in Ukraine on Feb. 24, how many injured, how many hungry or cold, how many displaced. We do not know the true count of casualties and the extent of the suffering and ought not pretend we do: This is the reality of war, each side having its version of unfolding events. My inclination is to add the deaths in Ukraine these past two weeks to the 14,000 dead and the 1.5 million displaced since 2014, when the regime in Kiev began shelling its own citizens in the eastern provinces – this because the people of Donetsk and Lugansk rejected the U.S. cultivated coup that deposed their elected president. This simple math gives us a better idea of how many Ukrainians are worthy of our mourning.

As we mourn, it is time to consider the wider consequences of this conflict, for Ukrainians are not alone among its victims. Who else has suffered? What else has been damaged? This war is of a kind humanity has never before known. What are its costs? Among paying-attention people it is increasingly plain that Washington’s intent in provoking Moscow’s intervention is, and probably has been from the first, to instigate a long-running conflict that bogs down Russian forces and leaves Ukrainians to wage an insurgency that cannot possibly succeed. Is there another way to explain the many billions of dollars’ worth of weapons and matériel the U.S. and its European allies now pour into Ukraine? If the Ukrainians cannot win — a universally acknowledged reality — what is the purpose here?


Whether this strategy goes as Washington wants, or if Russian forces get their work done and withdraw to avoid a classic quagmire, remains to be seen. But as Dave DeCamp noted in Antiwar.com last Friday, there is no sign whatsoever that the Biden administration plans any further diplomatic contacts with the Kremlin. The implication here should be evident. The U.S. strategy effectively requires the destruction of Ukraine in the service of America’s imperial ambitions. If this thought seems extreme, brief reference to the fates of Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and Syria will provide all the compelling context one may need.

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Politics vs System.

Ukraine and the Global American Empire (Eugyp)

The same western globalists who hate Russia, also count us as their enemies, and my sincere advice is to take them seriously in this. They have a kind of myopia for internal political dissidents; we are the unaligned domestic element, Russia is the unaligned international element, and so when Donald Trump is elected to the presidency, this must be, for them, the result of Russian interference. I keep calling these people American or western globalists, but that’s only one way to understand them. I don’t have anything against Americans; I lived there for many years and have a great many American friends. It is only an historical accident, probably, that America finds itself at the centre of this globalist excrescence, this post-political, post-national order.

Rolf Peter Sieferle, one of my favourite thinkers, wrote about the fundamental conflict, between the globalists on one hand, and the unaligned people like me and unaligned countries like Russia, in more abstract terms. For him, the clash is between “politics” and “system”: “Politics belongs to an older stratum of existence, ordered in terms of the state and of history, crystallised in statesmen, leaders and ideologues. It has programmes, values and goals. What is required are virtues and commitments directed towards a super-ordinate whole. The last resort of politics is war – the willingness of the individual to sacrifice himself for a higher cause, for his community.”

“System characterises newly emerging orders of higher complexity, which successively displace politics. Systems organise themselves without focus, without values, goals or programmes. Their only maxim is freedom and emancipation for individuals. Virtue and sacrifice are anachronisms. Wars are nothing but catastrophic conflicts that must be prevented through skilful management. Order is created by objective, autonomous constraints, not by a normative orientation. The structures of systems are as inescapable for individuals as a magnetic field is for iron filings. They do not “know” anything about it, but they conform to their predefined paths. The most important processes are not controlled and can hardly be grasped theoretically.”

System has largely prevailed in advanced “western” countries. Yet the rest of the world in many ways still thinks politically. This strikes the West as anachronistic fundamentalism. … [..] The global American empire doesn’t invade; that is not what systems do. It assimilates. It is basically a borg that imposes economic and political constraints on an ever expanding expanse of the globe, which progressively fatten, distract and deracinate populations, with a view towards blending them into the same shallow multinational consumerist soup. Their plan was to make Ukraine part of the borg, and in this way further encroach upon Russia. Russia responded in political fashion, by taking up arms. Because the western borg never knows when to stop, Ukraine will now be destroyed and probably partitioned, as a means of keeping it forever outside the western globalist fold.


Preliminary plans for Operation Barbarossa, with the southern arm of the German attack proceeding through the open plains of Ukraine.

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“Riots began far too late and were easily curbed.”

China, Big Tech, Big Pharma and Elites – The Four Horsemen (Angelova)

A portion of the human population has always desired to rule over the rest. It doesn’t matter if these folks are naturally born psyhopaths or if they were created. What matters is that they are now more powerful than ever. It’s because they didn’t have the right tools or plan until recently. Because of the tech tycoons, evil has complete influence over ordinary people’s life. People are being brainwashed every second by the media, the internet, and social media. Every second of our life is monitored by smart watches and smartphones, which transmit personal data to whoever pays the most. We have been examined so that we can be easily managed and gave up our liberty without even realizing it. While it is not fully implemented in most nations, it is already in use in China and has a name social credit system.

It is based on a set of regulations established by the government that, if not followed, result in punishment. It used to be simple set of rules, but it now encompasses everything you say, everything you publish on the internet, everything you do, your fascial expression, your daily activities, and every element of your existence! You are okay if you follow the government’s rules, no matter how absurd they are. Breaking any of these rules means no money, no food, and no freedom – you are a prisoner. The right to free expression is prohibited. It’s similar to the well-known novel “1984”, but with more sophisticated tools. “Always eyes watching you and the voice enveloping you. Asleep or awake, indoors or out of doors, in the bath or bed- no escape. Nothing was your own except the few cubic centimeters in your skull.”

About a year before COVID-19, Pfizer established close relations with the Chinese communist party. Is it a coincidence that the COVID mania that imprisoned the Earth’s people began in China? Is it a coincidence that the rest of the world adopted Chinese policies despite a lack of evidence that such measures were required? Is it a coincidence that China is a major supporter of World Health Organization Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus? Klaus Schwab, the founder of the World Economic Forum who taught the majority of globe leaders, reminded us that COVID-19 provided us with a tiny window of opportunity to reset the world, and WOW how effectively it was applied on the ostensibly free Western world. They were forced to live like cattle, with no human rights or health care, but were also subjected to experimental gene therapy. Riots began far too late and were easily curbed.

Of course, the fake virus fear isn’t enough, therefore a war is necessary to raise expenses. The more fearful humanity gets, the easier it is to dominate. People who are terrified cannot think. Fear of viruses, Russians, wars, shortages, cold, warm, storms, and climate change is the backbone of media and government propaganda, with celebrity culture filling in the gaps. It will finally destroy humanity since it goes against what makes us human: trusting and loving other humans. Of course, it is possible to turn the wave. We are surrounded by evil forces, yet we still have an option to remain free humans as long as we retain our ability to think, love, and feel.

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“The energy alliance with Russia, one of the world’s top oil producers, has enhanced OPEC’s power while also bringing the Saudis and Emiratis closer to Moscow..”

Saudi, Emirati Leaders Decline Calls With Biden During Ukraine Crisis (WSJ)

[…] Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and the U.A.E.’s Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al Nahyan both declined U.S. requests to speak to Mr. Biden in recent weeks, the officials said, as Saudi and Emirati officials have become more vocal in recent weeks in their criticism of American policy in the Gulf. “There was some expectation of a phone call, but it didn’t happen,” said a U.S. official of the planned discussion between the Saudi Prince Mohammed and Mr. Biden. “It was part of turning on the spigot [of Saudi oil].” […] One U.S. official said the Biden administration has worked diligently to strengthen Saudi and Emirati missile defenses, and that America would be doing more in the coming months to help the two Gulf nations protect themselves. It may not be all the two countries want, the official said, but the U.S. is trying to address their security concerns.


But the Saudis and Emiratis have declined to pump more oil, saying they are sticking to a production plan approved between their group, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, and a group of other producers led by Russia. The energy alliance with Russia, one of the world’s top oil producers, has enhanced OPEC’s power while also bringing the Saudis and Emiratis closer to Moscow. Both Prince Mohammed and Sheikh Mohammed took phone calls from Russian President Vladimir Putin last week, after declining to speak with Mr. Biden.

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“Companies can’t explore and drill, or build pipelines, without capital. Biden financial regulators allied with progressive investors are working to cut it off. ”

Biden’s US Oil Embargo (WSJ)

President Biden made the right decision Tuesday in banning Russian oil and natural gas imports. Yet at the same time he declared full-steam ahead on his green energy “transition” that includes an assault on U.S. fossil fuels. The contradiction is maddening. Banning Russian energy imports is fine as far as it goes, which isn’t very. The U.S. imports only 3% of its petroleum supply and less than 1% of coal from Russia. About 70% of Russian oil currently can’t find buyers because of sanctions risk. That’s the main reason crude prices have shot up to $130 per barrel. Once uncertainty about the scope of sanctions clears up, Russia will probably find global buyers for its energy at a discount. Imposing so-called secondary U.S. sanctions on institutions that finance Russia’s energy trade would be more effective.

But the White House won’t do that because it fears it could drive gasoline prices even higher. If that’s the worry, then here’s a better idea: Stand at the White House and declare that his Administration will support the development of U.S. oil and gas. Rescind all regulations designed to curb production, development and consumption. Announce a moratorium on new ones. Expedite permits, and encourage investment. Our guess is the price of Brent crude would fall $20 a barrel in anticipation of higher production. Yet Mr. Biden is doing precisely the opposite. On Tuesday he even blamed U.S. companies—not his policies—for not producing more. There are 9,000 available unused drilling permits, he claimed, and only 10% of onshore oil production takes place on federal land. Talk about a misdirection play.

First, companies have to obtain additional permits for rights of way to access leases and build pipelines to transport fuel. This has become harder under the Biden Administration. Second, companies must build up a sufficient inventory of permits before they can contract rigs because of the regulatory difficulties of operating on federal land. It takes 140 days or so for the feds to approve a drilling permit versus two for the state of Texas. The Administration has halted onshore lease sales. Producers are developing leases more slowly since they don’t know when more will be available. Offshore leases were snapped up at a November auction because companies expect it might be the last one. Interior’s five-year leasing program for the Gulf of Mexico expires in June.

Yet the Administration hasn’t promulgated a new plan. Nor did it appeal a liberal judge’s order in January revoking the November leases. But the Administration has appealed another judge’s order requiring that it hold lease sales. Then there’s the not-small problem of financing. Companies can’t explore and drill, or build pipelines, without capital. Biden financial regulators allied with progressive investors are working to cut it off. The Labor Department has proposed a rule that would require 401(k) managers to consider the climate impact of their investment holdings.

Novak: The Russian Federation knows where to redirect our oil from the European market (activate subtitles!)

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@Parsifaler is posting a lot on vaccines and cancer. This is just one thread.

Spike Protein Fibrosis Syndrome (Chesnut)

Spike protein fibrosis syndrome: the spike protein induces a firbrotic cascade exactly parallel to radiation fibrosis syndrome. The spike protein induces the same accumulation of excess fibrin that radiation does! First: In the microcirculation, SARS-CoV-2 and the S protein directly enhance platelet activation and fibrin aggregation, predisposing 30–50% of COVID-19 patients to develop thrombotic events.

Various pathophysiological mechanisms have been postulated for RFS including induction of free radical (FR)-mediated DNA damage and subsequent apoptosis as a predisposing event.[6] Pohlers et al. described three histopathological phases of RFS such as (1) prefibrotic phase comprising ENDOTHELIAL CELLS, (2) fibrotic phase of active fibrosis containing myofibroblasts, and (3) fibroatrophic phase characterized by subsequent loss of parenchymal cells. Radiation-induced (SPIKE PROTEIN) accumulation of excess fibrin in the extravascular, intravascular, and perivascular compartments has been described for RFS.

Ionizing radiation (SPIKE PROTEIN) may directly result in RFS by causing VASCULAR ENDOTHELIAL INJURY and indirectly by activating the inflammatory, epithelial regeneration, and tissue remodeling pathways and the coagulation cascade. Another important event is the activation of Janus kinase (JAK) and signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT) proteins along with nuclear factor kappa-light-chain-enhancer of activated B-cell (NF-KB) pathways by radiation resulting in the release of pro-inflammatory cytokines and growth factors. NOW! Now we can unite CANCER, NEURODEGENERATION AND CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASE that has heretofore appeared as RANDOM. But, it is nothing of the sort!


This Spike Protein Fibrosis Syndrome not only explains the cancer we are seeing, but also its AGGRESSIVENESS. Tumors are characterized by extracellular matrix (ECM) deposition, remodeling, and cross-linking that drive fibrosis to stiffen the stroma and promote malignancy. The stiffened stroma enhances tumor cell growth, survival and migration and drives a mesenchymal transition. A stiff ECM also induces angiogenesis, hypoxia and compromises anti-tumor immunity.

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“Our sanctions have taken countless lives around the world, a form of bloodshed we pretend isn’t warfare.”

Now Let’s Do the US Oligarchs (Eskow)

“Tonight I say to the Russian oligarchs and corrupt leaders who have bilked billions of dollars off this violent regime: no more. “The U.S. Department of Justice is assembling a dedicated task force to go after the crimes of Russian oligarchs. “We are joining with our European allies to find and seize your yachts, your luxury apartments, your private jets. We are coming for your ill-begotten gains.” With these words in his State of the Union address last week, President Joe Biden unintentionally laid out a blueprint for responding to the American oligarchs, super-predators who dwarf their Russian counterpoints in wealth and political power. America’s oligarchs, like their Russian counterparts, have bilked billions — no, make that trillions — from their own regime. Some of their bilking comes directly from its violence, in the form of “defense” contracts to entities like Halliburton, Lockheed Martin and the Carlyle Group.

About that “violent regime” business: It’s possible to condemn the violence perpetrated by Russia’s government while at the same time recognizing and condemning that of the U.S. The direct attacks on Iraq and Afghanistan, among other countries, have been matched by the proxy violence the U.S. has funded in nations like Palestine, Syria [ed.: and yes, Ukraine]. Our sanctions have taken countless lives around the world, a form of bloodshed we pretend isn’t warfare. A 2014 Princeton political science study showed that government actions nearly always conform to the wishes of wealthy and powerful U.S. elites. “Our central finding was this: Economic elites and interest groups can shape U.S. government policy — but Americans who are less well off have essentially no influence over what their government does,” wrote co-authors Martin Gilens and Benjamin Page.


America’s oligarchical influence extends from healthcare and fossil fuels to the industry of war itself. American companies account for more than half of all arms sales worldwide. The Center for Responsive Politics reports that “in the past two decades, (the arms industry’s) extensive network of lobbyists and donors have directed $285 million in campaign contributions and $2.5 billion in lobbying spending to influence defense policy.” Arms manufacturers (more commonly known by the Orwellian appellation, “defense industry”) shrewdly concentrate on hiring ex-government officials to advance their agenda and pump up their “ill-begotten gains.” This ensures that their interests are represented by people who know the officials they’re lobbying. Even more importantly, it puts those officials on notice that there is a lucrative future in store for them if they play along. Arms oligarchs have hired more than 200 lobbyists who, in the report’s words, “have worked in the same government that regulates and decides funding for the industry.”

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Biden wants Iran oil more than he wants Bolton. He’ll even throw in a nuclear deal.

Iran Plots To Assassinate Bolton, Biden Admin Resists Public Indictments (DW)

At least two Iranians in the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps-Quds Force (IRGC-QF), an elite Iranian military group that is also a designated terrorist organization, have allegedly been plotting to assassinate former Trump national security adviser John Bolton, according to a new report. Democrat President Joe Biden’s Department of Justice “possesses indictable evidence against the Iranians but … Biden administration officials are resisting publicly indicting the men for fear that it could derail their drive for a nuclear deal with Iran, currently nearing completion in negotiations in Vienna, Austria,” the Washington Examiner reported. “It is possible but unlikely that there are sealed indictments against the men, but the DOJ source said the seriousness of the conspiracy and the evidence warranted public indictment without delay.

“Sealed indictments would be unusual and probably unnecessary in this case, as they are usually used to prevent the target evading justice.” The report said that the Iranian military was involved in “significant … reconnaissance activity” in the alleged plot, which involved an effort to recruit an assassin on U.S. soil. The report said that similar threats have been made against former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and other Trump officials who worked on Iran. The report said that threats against Bolton and Pompeo “are continuing, specific, and highly credible.” The report added:


“The intelligence community became aware of the plot at an early stage, and it prompted high-level concern and a full-time Secret Service protective detail being assigned to Bolton earlier this year or late in 2021. Significant FBI assets were also deployed to disrupt the plot and assist in protecting Bolton… As the Washington Examiner reported in December 2020, Congress quietly extended Pompeo’s Diplomatic Security Service protective detail beyond his government tenure in response to these Iranian threats. That protective detail continues and has a high level of enhanced capability. Biden’s DOJ claimed in a statement to the Examiner that “it would be categorically false to claim that these kinds of policy considerations would drive such a charging decision.”

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“The next day, Russia attacked Ukraine and both national and international attention turned elsewhere – doubtless to the Liberal government’s great relief.”

Where’s The Outrage Over Trudeau’s Trip To Britain? (Stannus)

As Justin Trudeau waltzed through the UK, visiting Boris Johnson and the Queen, did anyone spare a thought for Canadians struggling under Trudeau’s authoritarian Covid power moves? In 2016, the British parliament debated whether Donald Trump, then running for the US presidency, ought to be banned from the UK for inflammatory ‘hate speech’. When Trudeau announced his visit to the UK, did the House of Commons ask itself whether he should be made welcome? Trudeau is no stranger to inflammatory language – having called the unvaccinated in Canada ‘extremists’, ‘misogynists’ and ‘racists’. But it’s far worse than that. He has undermined the principles on which Canadian democratic government is founded by criminalising peaceful protest. He invoked emergency powers to inflict extreme punishment on those who objected to his Covid policies while denying them proper due process. Does no one in the UK government find that troubling?

Trudeau used the Emergencies Act to allow banks to unilaterally freeze accounts and assets, not only of participants in the peaceful Ottawa freedom convoy but also of anyone who supported the protest financially – all without a court order and legal immunity. And insurance policies of participants were subject to cancellation. Nothing says ‘free country’ like being able to freeze the assets of your political opponents without notice, judicial oversight, or possibility of legal recourse, on suspicion of having donated $25 to a trucker who parked in front of Canada’s parliament because he didn’t want the government to take away his job. Perhaps this seems unfair. Trudeau may have invoked the never-before-used Emergencies Act to resolve a parking problem. An error in judgement, but in the end he rescinded it. Quite true. But not before he suspended Canadians’ rights to due process and to peaceful assembly.


Or delayed the Act’s debate in the Canadian House of Commons until after the protestors were forcibly removed by police. Or cynically strong-armed its approval through the House of Commons via a confidence vote – cleverly changing the subject of the vote to whether or not MPs wanted to call an election. And remember too that he hinted that the Act would be needed for months to come. Can the country ever be considered truly safe when – at any time – a truck driver apparently going about his business might approach the heart of Canada’s capital city and run up the Canadian flag, thereby magically metamorphosising into a terrorist? Trudeau lifted the Emergencies Act on 23 February when it became apparent that the Canadian Senate was likely to vote against it. The next day, Russia attacked Ukraine and both national and international attention turned elsewhere – doubtless to the Liberal government’s great relief.

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Central to Russiagate. Good long portrait.

The Longtime ‘Zelig’ of American Scandals Who ‘Crossfired’ Trump (RCI)

In the late summer of 2016 Stefan A. Halper met with at least three of Donald Trump’s associates in England and the United States, bragging about his friendship with Russian spies who “can be very helpful to us at this time.” As they listened to his tales of foreign intrigue and promises of illegal foreign help, what George Papadopoulos, Carter Page and Sam Clovis did not know was that Halper was not who he said he was. He was, indeed, a spy, but his handler was not the Kremlin – it was the FBI. Armed with leading questions and on at least two occasions a hidden tape recorder, Halper had been tasked by the bureau with finding dirt on the Trump campaign.


Halper’s undercover operation, which was documented in a report by the Department of Justice’s Inspector General, would prove largely a bust. Transcripts between Halper and Trump campaign officials would show that none of them took the bait, or appeared to otherwise be soliciting Russia’s help in the 2016 presidential campaign. Even now, it might seem odd that the FBI made Halper, then a septuagenarian Cambridge University professor, a linchpin of its top-secret counterintelligence probe codenamed “Crossfire Hurricane.” But a closer look at Halper’s life and work makes that decision seem inevitable. Stefan Halper is the Zelig of modern American political scandal – a chameleon-like, unusually ubiquitous figure who keeps appearing when mischief is afoot.

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“Nudge Act”. “Nudging Users to Drive Good Experiences on Social Media”.

Get out of our lives!

How the Senate is Poised to Codify Censorship of Social Media (Turley)

Beware of politicians bearing reforms. Since the Trojans first wheeled a wooden horse into their fortified city, many are leery about “gifts” that may be heavily laden with dangers. That is true with the Trojan horse legislation just offered by Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.). In the name of “reforming” the internet and bringing tech monopolies to heel, Klobuchar has penned a “Nudge Act” that would expand corporate censorship and speech controls. Even the name is designed to be non-threatening. After all, who could oppose an act titled “Nudging Users to Drive Good Experiences on Social Media”? It is enough to garner the support of Sen. Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyo.). The act, however, is less of a nudge and more of a shove toward approved content and choices.

For years, President Joe Biden and Democratic members of Congress have pushed for greater and greater censorship on the internet and on social media. Liberals have found a winning strategy in using corporate censorship to circumvent constitutional limits on governmental speech controls. Senators like Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) warned social media companies that they would not tolerate any “backsliding or retrenching” by “failing to take action against dangerous disinformation,” and demanded “robust content modification” to block disfavored views on subjects ranging from climate control to elections to the pandemic. The Nudge Act is arguably the most insidious of these efforts.

Under the Act, Congress would enlist the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine (NAS) to recommend sweeping design changes to Big Tech platforms like Facebook, Instagram and YouTube to “reduce the harms of algorithmic amplification and social media addiction.” The Act is a masterpiece of doublespeak. It refers to developing “content-agnostic interventions” that could ultimately be enforced by a commission and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). That sounds great; after all, many of us have called for years for a return to content neutrality on social media where sites function more as communication platforms, similar to telephone companies. However, that is clearly not the intent of the bill’s sponsors, who see it as a weapon against “misinformation.” That was made clear by Klobuchar herself: “For too long, tech companies have said ‘Trust us, we’ve got this.’

But we know that social media platforms have repeatedly put profits over people, with algorithms pushing dangerous content that hooks users and spreads misinformation.” How is combatting “misinformation” content-neutral? The answer will be imposed by a new commission and lead to a site’s failure to take “appropriate” measures being declared “unfair or deceptive acts or practices.” That would create a glacial chilling effect on these companies, which will err on the side of censorship.

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Tulsi
https://twitter.com/i/status/1501158656020127744

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Jan 312022
 


Pablo Picasso Women running on the beach 1922

 

1 in 5 Canadians May Never Be Comfortable Without Masks, Vaccine Mandates (I.)
Did Justin Trudeau Pick the Wrong Fight With Canadian Truckers? (Bridge)
Unvaccinated and Undeterred: Austria Holdouts Dig In Despite New Law (Y!)
Concern As Republicans Push To Make Dubious Covid Cures Easier (G.)
University of Minnesota Ivermectin Trial Nearing Completion (Star T.)
Japan’s Kowa Says Ivermectin Effective Against Omicron In Phase III Trial (R.)
University Offers Help To Students ‘Affected By A Free Speech Event’ (DM)
US Close To Approving ‘Mother Of All Sanctions’ Against Russia (G.)
EU Threatens To Halt Nord Stream 2 & Cut Russia Off From SWIFT (RT)
Year in Review 2021 Part 3 – Rise of Global Authoritarianism (Dave Collum)
Biden Promises To Replace Tom Brady With A Woman Of Color (BBee)

 

 

Joe Rogan

 

 

We are standing at the battle line.

 

 

U turn

 

 

 

 

Mass formation.

1 in 5 Canadians May Never Be Comfortable Without Masks, Vaccine Mandates (I.)

As we approach the second anniversary of the declaration of COVID-19 as a global pandemic and viral case loads continue to break records, it’s not surprising that many Canadians are wary about “returning to normal.” A new Ipsos poll conducted on behalf of Global News shows that while one in five (18%) Canadians feel things are normal now, the same proportion (19%) say they’re not sure they’ll ever be ready to live without masks or vaccine mandates. Regardless of when Canadians feel the new normal will materialize, two thirds (64%) agree (27% strongly, 37% somewhat) that governments are not doing enough to facilitate the return to normal, a figure that is higher among Albertans[..].


How will we reach the new normal? Four in ten (38%) Canadians think mandatory vaccination is the most effective means of getting COVID-19 under control. This opinion is stronger among men (42% vs. 34% women) and Boomers (50% vs. 37% Gen X, 29% Millennials, 27% Gen Z). The use of border closings and rapid tests in the workplace are also both favoured by 14%. Relatively few Canadians believe that removing all public health measures and allowing COVID-19 to spread more quickly (10%), penalizing people who don’t get their vaccines (i.e. a tax, further restrictions, etc.) (9%), or shutting down all non-essential businesses (8%) would be the most effective way to get the pandemic under control.

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“This is, perhaps, the greatest act of cowardice from a sitting Canadian PM in this nation’s history..”

Did Justin Trudeau Pick the Wrong Fight With Canadian Truckers? (Bridge)

Since Jan. 15, unvaccinated truckers entering Canada are required to be tested and quarantined for 15 days; the U.S. mandated similar restrictions on Jan. 22. Naturally such regulations made their job impossible to perform. Thus, the mandates have removed some 20-25% of the estimated 175,000 cross-border American and Canadian truckers due to noncompliance in both countries. But these sidelined workers are not leaving their jobs without a fight, and it seems that many Canadians support the cause.


While mainstream media and social media has largely been able to control the flow of information that Canadians receive with regards to Covid and the vaccination mandates, the trucker convoy has given the public a chance to really express themselves. Judging by early indications it doesn’t look particularly good for the Trudeau administration. Telegram, the censorship-free messenger application, is chockfull of videos and photographs of overpasses near Toronto loaded with placard-waving supporters as the convoy grinds its way towards Ottawa to the east. Other platforms showed the local residents of small towns handing out meals to the truckers despite the frigid temperatures.

Undoubtedly the most influential advocate of the truckers’ cause thus far has been Elon Musk, who tweeted a three-word message that certainly did not sit well with Justin Trudeau: “Canadian truckers rule.” Speaking of Trudeau, the 50-year-old leader of the Labor Party announced just this week that he had been “exposed to Covid-19,” and would therefore be isolating at home for five days. That announcement sparked a small riot on social media, with many suggesting that the Canadian leader had used the excuse of Covid to hopefully avoid the truckers. Keean Bexte, a journalist with Counter Signal, suggested in a tweet that a new variant of “Coward-19” was detected.


“This is, perhaps, the greatest act of cowardice from a sitting Canadian PM in this nation’s history,” Bexte wrote in an accompanying article. “When Canadians finally take a stand, finally take real action, Trudeau merely waves it away, practically flipping them the bird through a single Tweet, ending it with “please get vaccinated” to rub salt in wounds he’s opened.” This is the problem when the media and government refuses to permit any sort of formal debate on a serious issue that affects millions of people on so many different levels. Trudeau has given his countrymen just one option, and that is to get the vaccination or essentially become second-class citizens in their own country. Unlike other effected industries, however, truckers have the option of putting their machines to use for a very effective form of protest, and one that promises to cause severe logistical problems as far as transport goes.

Sikh

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“..there is already this parallel community. It’s already being built. There is already everything,”

Unvaccinated and Undeterred: Austria Holdouts Dig In Despite New Law (Y!)

Despite vaccination against Covid-19 becoming mandatory in Austria on Friday, musician Katharina Teufel-Lieli insists she won’t bow to pressure to get the jab. “I have the right to decide over my body… to simply say ‘no,'” the harpist told AFP at her home in Neumarkt-am-Wallersee, not far from the western city of Salzburg. Austria this week becomes the first European Union country to make Covid-19 vaccination legally compulsory for adults. Under the new law, those holding out against the jab can face fines of up to 3,600 euros ($4,100) from mid-March after an introductory phase. Teufel-Lieli, 49, is one of tens of thousands to have joined massive demonstrations against the law and other coronavirus-related measures since November, when plans for the legal change were announced.

The mother of six said that she used to be “apolitical” but the state is “overstepping the mark” by “attacking people” through this act of “totalitarianism”. Access to certain services has already been restricted since last year under government-imposed measures. Entry to restaurants, hairdressers, hotels, non-essential shops, sports and cultural venues has only been permitted since November to those who are vaccinated or recently cured. This has sparked complaints within the retail sector about staff having to act as “an auxiliary police” in checking vaccine passes in shops. Frustrations since the beginning of the pandemic have also led opponents to create a new political party, known by its acronym, MFG which stands for People, Freedom, Fundamental Rights.

One of three MFG representatives to have already won a state legislature seat, Dagmar Haeusler, said that she just did not see the point of compulsory Covid vaccination. “If there was a valid reason, as with smallpox which has a mortality rate of 20 to 30 percent, we could talk about mandatory vaccination, which would benefit everyone. “But in the case of Covid-19, I don’t see the point,” the 38-year-old biomedical scientist and MFG co-founder told AFP. Demonstrators and other opponents say the measures just create a “parallel society” — with the unvaccinated forced to do things under the radar. According to Teufel-Lieli, there are already hairdressers willing to cater to those not vaccinated or cured, while people still have coffee together in private meet-ups, mostly organised over social networks. “In fact, there is already this parallel community. It’s already being built. There is already everything,” she said.

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“..legislation that they say keeps the government from interfering with doctors..”

Concern As Republicans Push To Make Dubious Covid Cures Easier (G.)

Republican state lawmakers across the United States have proposed – and in some cases passed – legislation that they say keeps the government from interfering with doctors who want to prescribe ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine to help prevent and treat Covid-19. But those treatments have not proven effective at preventing or treating Covid and infectious disease experts see the bills as examples of right-wing lawmakers politicizing medicine – a trend that is increasing as the pandemic wears on in America in to its third year amid an increasingly fraught political atmosphere. And so it goes with the latest suspect Covid-19 treatment that has become about more than just a drug, but rather about whether to trust established public health organizations or doctors who stray from their guidelines, and podcast and cable news hosts.


“We really need to have the politicians step aside and let scientists and public health officials make the decisions on what is going to be beneficial in preventing and treating Covid,” said Sunil Parikh, an associate professor of epidemiology and infectious diseases at the Yale School of Public Health. Kansas is one of at least 11 states, according to Buzzfeed, where Republican lawmakers have proposed, and in some cases passed, legislation to limit medical licensing boards’ ability to take action against providers who prescribe ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine, another drug that has not been shown to be effective against Covid but nevertheless promoted by some politicians on the right. “We are leaving it up to medical professionals like it should be, not bureaucrats trying to maintain a single message,” said Kansas state Senator Richard Hilderbrand, the chair of the committee that sponsored the legislation.

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“..the nation’s first clinical trial of ivermectin to treat COVID-19..”

Just how crazy is that?

University of Minnesota Ivermectin Trial Nearing Completion (Star T.)

University of Minnesota researchers expect to finish enrollment this week in the nation’s first clinical trial of ivermectin to treat COVID-19, and the study’s highly anticipated results could be only a month away. The COVID-OUT study is reviewing three common drugs, including the antidepressant fluvoxamine and the diabetes treatment metformin, but gained attention for its inclusion of ivermectin. The controversial drug has been championed by opponents of COVID-19 vaccines, despite a warning from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) that ivermectin is cleared only to treat parasitic infections, head lice and certain skin conditions. Anti-inflammatory benefits of all three medications prompted the U study, which was delayed by slow enrollment over the summer until the delta and omicron waves of the pandemic emerged.

Lead researcher Dr. Carolyn Bramante said the results will provide clinical guidance to doctors who are facing record pandemic cases and to the FDA about whether to authorize the drugs for treatment of COVID-19. “Sooner would have been better, but I’m really proud of my team,” she said. “We will be done very quickly.” Proven outpatient COVID-19 treatments have been limited, and supplies in Minnesota have been scarce. Providers in the state discontinued two types of monoclonal antibody infusions in December because they were ineffective against the omicron variant, and providers had to ration the effective types. New antiviral COVID-19 pills that have received emergency FDA approval are coming in small shipments every other week to Minnesota.

[..] The U trial is enrolling 1,100 patients with COVID-19 to receive fluvoxamine and ivermectin, alone or in combination with metformin, or a nonmedicating placebo for comparison. The study is tracking whether patients taking the drugs for 14 days avoid hospitalization and maintain healthy blood oxygen levels. Bramante said the drugs have potential to reduce excessive inflammation — a hallmark of some of the most severe and fatal COVID-19 cases. Ivermectin has been tried in other countries, such as India, with less access to vaccine, despite a World Health Organization warning against its use outside clinical trials until its benefits are proven. Some global studies of the drug have been debunked while others in the U.S. are behind the U study.

Duluth-based Essentia Health on Monday announced it was joining the ongoing national ACTIV-6 clinical trial that is studying ivermectin in combination with fluvoxamine and fluticasone, an inhaled steroid. “The aim of the study is to see if these medications make you feel better sooner and prevent hospitalization,” said Dr. Rajesh Prabhu, an Essentia infectious disease specialist. Bramante is not allowed to see the patient data from the U study until after enrollment is finished, but she said it is a positive sign that a data safety monitoring board has allowed it to continue. That means the drugs aren’t causing harm but also there is no proof yet they absolutely work or don’t work against COVID-19.

Read more …

Japan goes its own way.

Japan’s Kowa Says Ivermectin Effective Against Omicron In Phase III Trial (R.)

Japanese trading and pharmaceutical company Kowa Co Ltd said on Monday anti-parasite drug ivermectin has been found effective for treating the Omicron variant of COVID-19 in a Phase III trial. The trial found ivermectin has “an antiviral effect” against the variant, Kowa said without providing further details. The firm has been working with Kitasato University, a medical university in Tokyo. Clinical trials evaluating the drug, which is used to treat parasites in animals and humans, are ongoing but promotion of the drug as a COVID-19 treatment has generated controversy. The drug is not approved for treatment of COVID-19 in Japan and the U.S. Federal Drug Administration has repeatedly warned against its use.

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Yes, it’s about vaccines.

University Offers Help To Students ‘Affected By A Free Speech Event’ (DM)

Colorado State University is promoting resources aimed at students who claim to be ‘affected by a free speech event’ on campus. A sign was spotted on campus and posted to social media which reads: ‘If you (or someone you know) are affected by a free speech event on campus, here are some resources.’ The sign then proceeds to list 17 different departments or offices on the university campus that may be of help. It includes Multicultural Counseling, Incidents of Bias Reporting, the Office of Equal Opportunity, and a Victim’s Assistance Hotline. Even university staff are taken care of with specific services for employees including the Office of Ombuds, and the Employee Assistance Program.

The roll call continues with a host of departments and programs set up to assist minority students, including Student Diversity Program centers for Asian Pacific, Black/African, and Native Americans. LGBTQ+ are not forgotten either with various services and cultural resources designated for the community. Students with disabilities and given their own hotline together with women, through the Women and Gender Advocacy Center. Campus Reform first reported on the sign. The sign was posted on the Instagram account Turning Point USA Rockies Territory. Turning Point Action is an American nonprofit organization that advocates for conservative values on high school, college, and university campuses across the country. The account called out the school for ‘intolerance,’ adding, ‘We haven’t even had an event yet gotta love the intolerance of @coloradostateuniversity.’

Colorado State University, where tuition is $31,712 a year for out-of-state students, has been hostile in recent months to conservative organizations. Several incidents occurred during the fall 2021 semester. In one, a student was filmed harassing Turning Point group members calling them ‘right-wing goons’ and noting that ‘disrupting one of your activities is actually probably one of the most ethical and best things I can do with my time.’ [..]Also in the fall, a student was caught as they stole a sign advocating against vaccine mandates after the university threatened any student who didn’t register their vaccine status with arrest for trespassing. The university later clarified their policy saying that they were ‘not arresting students who are unvaccinated’, so long as they provided their vaccination information or declared an exemption.

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Whole cloth.

US Close To Approving ‘Mother Of All Sanctions’ Against Russia (G.)

The leaders of the Senate foreign relations committee said on Sunday they were on the verge of approving “the mother of all sanctions” against Vladimir Putin, warning there would be no appeasement as the Russian president contemplates an invasion of Ukraine. “We cannot have a Munich moment again,” the panel’s Democratic chair, Bob Menendez of New Jersey, told CNN’s State of the Union, referring to the 1938 agreement by which allies ceded parts of Czechoslovakia to Hitler, believing it would stave off war. “Putin will not stop if he believes the west will not respond,” Menendez said. “We saw what he did in 2008 in Georgia, we saw what he did in 2014 in pursuit of Crimea. He will not stop.”

Menendez said he believed bipartisan negotiations for severe sanctions were “on the one-yard line”, despite disagreements with Republicans over whether measures should be imposed before or after any Russian invasion. The UK government promised to ramp up sanctions against Putin and his associates. The negotiations come ahead of an expected UN security council meeting on Monday, at the request of the US, to give Russia the opportunity to explain its actions. Linda Thomas-Greenfield, the US ambassador to the UN, said: “We’re going to go into the council prepared to listen to Russia’s security concerns, but we’re not going to be distracted by their propaganda.”

On Sunday, Kyiv urged Moscow to pull back its troops from Ukraine’s border and continue dialogue with the west if it was “serious” about de-escalating tensions that have soared amid fears of a Russian invasion. Canada moved its Ukraine-based military units westward on Sunday and announced the temporary withdrawal of all non-essential employees from its Kyiv embassy, citing ongoing Russian threats along the border. “We will continue to take all precautions necessary to keep our Canadian Armed Forces safe and secure,” said Canada’s Defense Minister Anita Anand at a press conference in Kyiv. Canada has 900 military members supporting the Nato mission in Ukraine via “land, air and sea,” she said.

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Eurocrat

EU Threatens To Halt Nord Stream 2 & Cut Russia Off From SWIFT (RT)

The EU is discussing the possibility of excluding Russia from the SWIFT international bank payment system and completely putting a halt on the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline if Moscow launches an invasion of Ukraine, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has revealed. Speaking to CNN on Thursday, the Eurocrat said the EU would not rule out any possible angles for sanctions, adding that nothing is “off the table.” The EU and the US are currently working on a package of measures designed to deter Russia from considering a military incursion into Ukraine. Moscow stands accused of placing 100,000 troops on the border, with some alleging it is planning an attack. This claim has repeatedly been denied by the Kremlin.

Von der Leyen’s latest statement comes despite some reports that many foreign leaders have given up on some of the harshest sanctions, including on the financial and energy sectors, due to fears that the European economy and the continent’s energy security could see significant blowback. These include the suggestion that the EU could place a total ban on the usage of Nord Stream 2, a controversial gas pipeline that connects Russia to Germany. “I want to be very clear: Nothing is off the table, everything is on the table,” von der Leyen said when asked directly if the EU would make sure the energy system is stopped from ever being used. She repeated the same line when also asked about SWIFT. “The Commission is responsible for designing, shaping, and developing the sanctions – in the financial field, in the economic field, in the technology field. This includes everything,” she explained.

According to von der Leyen, any EU sanctions against Russia would have a devastating effect. Brussels is Moscow’s largest trading partner, and 75% of direct foreign investment in Russia comes from the EU, she explained, suggesting that economic measures would be painful. Earlier in January, German newspaper Handelsblatt reported that the EU and the US had refused to consider disconnecting Russia from the SWIFT international bank payment system. It noted that it could destabilize financial markets and help create an alternative payment infrastructure that would no longer be dominated by Western nations.

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Unthinking respect for authority is the greatest enemy of truth.
~ Albert Einstein

Year in Review 2021 Part 3 – Rise of Global Authoritarianism (Dave Collum)

So, here we are at the third and final part of the 2021 Year in Review and it’s no longer 2021. Sorry about that pfuck-up. Think of it as not in 2021 but from 2021. You may have noticed that the first 200 pages (parts 1 and 2) were laced with a recurring catchphrase, “WTF is happening?” It was a literary device for noting that the events ceased to make sense within a conventional worldview, suggesting it is time to torch the old model and start anew. Our response to a disease that was killing a very small slice of the population was to sequester and vaccinate the entire population with an experimental drug of real but unquantified fatality rate. The apparent scientific illiteracy was not some mass psychosis. Y’all just got suckered by America’s Most Trusted Psychopathic Mass Murderer assisted by an epic media blitz sponsored by the pharmaceutical industry that had a distinct authoritarian quality.

During the brief period after uploading part 2 while grinding on this last portion, the Supreme Court took on the vaccine mandate issue, ruling that the only people forfeiting control of their own healthcare are the healthcare workersref 2 The court also illustrated their profound ignorance of the pandemic and what they were even charged to assess—the Constitutionality of mandates, not the efficacy.ref 3 The CEO of a major insurer reported a 40% spike in fatalities within the 18–65 age bracket that was not from Covid.ref 4 He said 10% would be a 3-sigma, once-every-200-year event: 40% is unheard of. Although he refrained from identifying a cause—deaths of despair, neglected healthcare, or a toxic vaccine—he knows precisely what did them in. They have been studying this stuff for centuries. I suspect his real message was that the insurance industry is about to contribute to inflation with rising premiums.

Meanwhile, the pathological liars running the covid grift decided after two years the masks you’ve been wearing served no medical purpose and that the vaccines don’t work either. Wait: who said the masks and vaccines don’t work?

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“I was a civil rights hero, darn it! It’s time for the rest of the world to catch up!”

Biden Promises To Replace Tom Brady With A Woman Of Color (BBee)

Legendary quarterback Tom Brady has announced his plan to retire from the NFL to spend more time carving little wooden toys for his grandkids. In response to the earth-shattering news, President Joe Biden has announced his commitment to replace the outgoing football star with a woman of color. “Listen, folks, it’s time,” said Biden to the press. “In the hundred-year history of the NFL, not a single quarterback has ever been a woman of color. That’s racist! We all know that poor women are just as smart and powerful as white kids. As president, I will nominate a new quarterback to replace Tom Brady that reflects America’s diversity.”


When told he doesn’t have the authority to nominate quarterbacks to the NFL, Biden told his staff he would just sign the executive order and let the courts deal with it later. “There’s no excuse,” said Biden. When I used to play Nine Pins with Jehoshaphat Jenkins and the townsfolk, we always used to let the black women play with us. I was a civil rights hero, darn it! It’s time for the rest of the world to catch up!” So far, candidates being considered for the empty position include Michelle Obama, Tyler Perry, and Colin Kaepernick in a woman’s wig.

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McCullough

 

 

Super immunity

 

 

 

 

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Jun 112021
 
 June 11, 2021  Posted by at 8:47 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  60 Responses »


Wassily Kandinsky Free Curve to the Point – Accompanying Sound of Geometric Curves 1925

 

Stalin’s Covid Mismanagement Gets International Attention (CM)
100s Suffer Heart Inflammation Following COVID Vaccines (ZH)
Highly Contagious Delta Variant Now Makes Up 91% Of UK’s New Covid Cases (F.)
As Trump Banned China Travel, Fauci Funded Wuhan Lab Studies (NP)
There Are No Solutions -Part Two (Jim Quinn)
Goldman Requires Workers To Report If They Are Vaccinated (ZH)
Celebrity Cruises Has A Workaround For DeSantis’ Vaccine Passport Ban (F.)
The Global Pandemic Requires A Global Vaccination Plan (F.)
China Passes Anti-Foreign Sanctions Law (Y!)
Cash Gone Nuts: Treasury General Account Drops to $674 Billion (WS)
Trump Tells Biden To Give Putin His ‘Warmest Regards’ (F.)
Convert New York’s Entire Grid to Renewables With This One Trick (Vice)

 

 

 

 

Bhakdi: the authorities who Ok’d this; the EU; all the governments who approved these vaccines.. I think they should all be taken to court.”

 

 

Come for the headline, stay for the ivermectin.

Stalin’s Covid Mismanagement Gets International Attention (CM)

In a special live broadcast on June 1 of the DarkHorse podcast, Dr. Bret Weinstein (Ph.D.) and Dr. Pierre Kory (M.D.) discussed the incredible story of the Ivermectin drug in controlling COVID, in which they criticized Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin for his irresponsible behavior during the pandemic. In the recent broadcast, Dr.Pierre Kory praised the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) for including Ivermectin in their treatment guidelines. He added,” Some of the states in India went even further and they went much more aggressive. One of the boldest and uplifting moves was that of the Chief Minister of Goa, who recommended the use of Ivermectin for every adult over the age of 18 who was infected with corona. This is what I would have done if I were the Chief Minister of state.”

He went on to say that states like Goa and Uttar Pradesh took bold steps to help India reduce the number of COVID cases in the country. Later, he slammed Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin for effectively outlawing Ivermectin and going all-in on Remdesivir, which he claims is the cause of the state’s increasing cases. He also took a dig at MK Stalin’s name recalling the Russian Communist dictator Joseph Stalin who killed thousands of people. “I don’t know why but his name is MK Stalin. I just have to mention that. So, Stalin in India outlawed Ivermectin and it is not going well for the citizens”, he said. In another interview with Sky News Australia, Craig Kelly, Independent Federal Member for Hughes, Australia, also criticized MK Stalin for blocking Ivermectin drug in the state, claiming that it resulted in a rise in mortality and infection rates while every other state that used it experienced a decrease in COVID cases.

“There is one exception in India. It is the state of Tamil Nadu down the south where they have elected a new leader who goes by the name Stalin. People actually went to the ballot boxes and voted for a bloke called Stalin. He decided that Ivermectin wasn’t effective and basically blocked from the state. The death rate and infection rate have gone through the roof while every other state that is using it is seeing massive declines.” he said.

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Perfectly safe.

100s Suffer Heart Inflammation Following COVID Vaccines (ZH)

Federal authorities have received over 800 reports of heart inflammation in people who received a COVID-19 vaccine, a health official said Thursday. The reports of myocarditis or pericarditis were submitted to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System, a passive reporting system run jointly by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Food and Drug Administration, through May 31. The bulk of the reports described heart inflammation appearing after the second of two doses of either the Pfizer of Moderna vaccines, both of which utilize messenger RNA technology.

Authorities stress that anybody can submit reports through the reporting system but authorities have already verified that 226 of the reports meet the CDC’s working case definition, Dr. Tom Shimabukuro, a deputy director at the agency, said during a presentation of the data. Followup and review are in progress for the rest. Of the 285 case reports for which the disposition was known at the time of the review, 270 patients had been discharged and 15 were still hospitalized, officials said. Myocarditis typically requires hospital care. No deaths were reported.

Update (2000ET): The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Thursday that it will convene an “emergency meeting” of its advisers on June 18th to discuss rare but higher-than-expected reports of heart inflammation following doses of the mRNA-based Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines. The new details about myocarditis and pericarditis emerged first in presentations to a panel of independent advisers for the Food and Drug Administration, who are meeting Thursday to discuss how the regulator should approach emergency use authorization for using COVID-19 vaccines in younger children.

As CBS reports, the CDC previously disclosed that reports of heart inflammation were detected mostly in younger men and teenage boys following their second dose, and that there was a “higher number of observed than expected” cases in 16- to 24-year-olds. Last month, the CDC urged providers to “ask about prior COVID-19 vaccination” in patients with symptoms of heart inflammation.

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If they don’t open on June 21, watch the spectacle.

Highly Contagious Delta Variant Now Makes Up 91% Of UK’s New Covid Cases (F.)

The highly contagious “delta” variant of the coronavirus originating from India now makes up nearly all of the U.K.’s new coronavirus cases, Health Minister Matt Hancock revealed Thursday, as the rapid spread of the mutant strain adds a new threat to Europe’s reopening. Hancock told lawmakers while under questioning about the government’s handling of the pandemic that intelligence he saw Wednesday night showed 91% of the U.K.’s new cases are made up by the delta variant. While research is still ongoing about its transmission rate, Hancock told Parliament earlier this week that the British government believes the delta variant is 40% more transmissible than the alpha variant (B.1.1.7) first detected in Britain.

Notably, as of Thursday, just three fully vaccinated people in the U.K. infected with the new variant have been hospitalized, according to data cited by Hancock, who emphasized “the jabs are working.” However, government data shows cases have been sharply rising in the U.K.: more than 41,000 new infections were reported in England in the week through June 9, a two-thirds increase from the previous seven-day period. The revelation about the virus’s prevalence in the U.K. came as the World Health Organization on Thursday morning warned the delta variant is “poised to take hold” across Europe. Hans Kluge, WHO’s regional director for Europe, encouraged countries to “act fast on signals of increasing cases” and urged caution as some move to reopen.

Hancock stressed that vaccines appear to be effective against this version of the virus. So far, the U.K. has partially vaccinated over 60% of its population and fully vaccinated nearly 43%, boasting one of the most successful vaccine rollouts in the world. The broader European Union has moved more slowly, with just 42% partially vaccinated and 22% fully vaccinated against the virus. Nonetheless, the spread of the variant is threatening to prolong lockdowns in the U.K. as the government is currently weighing whether it should delay the lifting of restrictions in England scheduled for June 21.

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Fauci and Daszak above the law.

As Trump Banned China Travel, Fauci Funded Wuhan Lab Studies (NP)

Published on February 3rd 2020, the paper entitled Synergistic China–US Ecological Research is Essential for Global Emerging Infectious Disease Preparedness was authored by researchers from the notorious EcoHealth Alliance and several Chinese Communist Party-run scientific institutions, including the Wuhan lab. EcoHealth Alliance – run by self-declared “killer” virus creator Peter Daszak – and the Wuhan lab have both come under increased scrutiny for their potential role in the creation of COVID-19 as well as the cover-up of its true origins. The 14-page paper was the culmination of two-year collaborative project between Chinese and U.S. researchers involving two workshops on “Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution of Infectious Diseases” in Shenzhen, China and the University of California Berkeley in 2018.

“The workshop has two objectives,” a summary notes before explaining: The first objective is to review recent progress in ecology and infectious disease research and identify key gaps in data, information, and knowledge. The second objective is to identify research priority areas and discuss possible mechanisms for joint, international cooperation on research and education activities in ecology and infectious disease research. The paper – which was published in EcoHealth Alliance’s official journal “EcoHealth” – asserts that collaboration between the U.S. and China is key to stopping future pandemics. “International cooperation, particularly between China and the USA, is essential to fully engage the resources and scientific strengths necessary to add this ecological emphasis to the pandemic preparedness strategy,” it posits.

“The global nature of emerging and re-emerging infectious disease threats indicates the critical role of international cooperation, particularly spearheaded by China and the USA, in emerging infectious disease (EID) preparedness,” the paper adds before calling for the two countries to form a “united front for research”: “The world would be much better equipped for curbing the next pandemic, if China and the USA provided a united front for research and progress toward EID preparedness.”

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“No scientist ever believes that he has the final answer or the ultimate truth on anything.”
– Carroll Quigley

There Are No Solutions -Part Two (Jim Quinn)

The boldness and extremeness of their actions since the Fall of 2019 seem out of character with their usual shrouded machinations behind the scenes, where the public is ignorant of their actions. Something broke within the debt saturated financial system and Powell was ordered to restart QE and start reducing interest rates to fend off disaster. In a fascinating coincidence, Event 201, a pandemic simulation, was conducted on October 18 in New York City, jointly run by The Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, World Economic Forum, and Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The four-year coup attempt by the Deep State against Trump was floundering, with their pathetic last gasp impeachment farce in January 2020.

The weaponization of the Chinese bio-weapon lab virus into a global pandemic narrative accomplished numerous objectives for the Deep State. It provided cover for the Federal Reserve to funnel trillions into the pockets of the criminal Wall Street cabal and their billionaire clientele. It provided the means for Democrat governors and mayors to use it as an excuse to allow mass mail-in voting in order to fraudulently steal the election. Destroying the economy through unnecessary worthless lockdowns and blaming it on Trump gave the Democrats a further impetus to steal the election. Convincing the entire nation masking and lockdowns stopped the spread (they did not) allowed the ruling class to exercise tyrannical authoritarian un-Constitutional mandates with little to no push back from the masses – giving them the confidence to push further.

Cases and deaths were plummeting before vaccines were rolled out in any quantity, but the media mouthpieces and lying politicians will credit the jab for decline. Using propaganda fear, convincing the masses cowering in your basement was brave, using their captured media to lie about “being in this together” as our rulers flaunted their own lockdown dictates, creating social unrest based on the false narrative of systematic racism, forcing people to be scared and suspicious of each other, and pitting families and friends against each other based on falsehoods, has accomplished the mission of tearing the fabric of our society. And now for the coup de grace – forced vaccinations with an experimental untested DNA altering concoction for a virus with a 99.8% survival rate.

The immune systems of all but the sickliest are sufficient to fight off this virus and cheap, effective, and safe treatments like ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine have been scientifically proven to successfully defeat this virus. Watching scientists and doctors declare these treatments dangerous and ineffective, with Big Tech censoring anyone dissenting from this narrative, tells you how corrupted the medical and media industries have become. Science is never settled. “No scientist ever believes that he has the final answer or the ultimate truth on anything.” – Carroll Quigley

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“..the bank had sent a memo this week informing employees in the US that they had until noon on Thursday to report their vaccination status.”

Goldman Requires Workers To Report If They Are Vaccinated (ZH)

Goldman Sachs’ bankers dragged themselves back to the office last month, shortly before American workplace safety regulators weighed in on what employers are legally allowed to ask (and not ask) about their vaccination status. As it turns out, vague federal standards will allow Goldman to allow workers to go bare-faced in the office so long as they provided their managers with information confirming they had been vaccinated. Previously, disclosing vaccination status had been “optional” for employees. That has apparently changed, as Andrew Ross Sorkin’s “DealBook” reported Thursday that the bank had sent a memo this week informing employees in the US that they had until noon on Thursday to report their vaccination status.

Bankers can log their vaccination status with the bank’s internal app for employees. Since employers can’t directly ask for this information, the bank will instead ask workers to fill in the date where they received their shots, along with the maker of their vaccine. Goldman has also informed employees through the app that their vaccination status may be shared with managers and used for planning purposes. “Registering your vaccination status allows us to plan for a safer return to the office for all of our people as we continue to abide by local public health measures,” said a section of the memo, which was sent to employees who hadn’t already reported their vaccination status. A copy of the letter was obtained by the NYT.

One of the NYT’s “expert” sources explained that Goldman can share vaccination status “with certain individuals if it’s relevant to the individual’s responsibilities, but they can’t share for no reason,,” according to Jessica Kuester, who specializes in benefits at the law firm Ogletree Deakins. [..] Companies across the US are trying to find out how many workers are vaccinated ahead of full office reopenings. They have conducted surveys and given out cash rewards, mimicking strategies embraced by state governments, as the Biden Administration scrambles to meet its goal of having 70% of American adults at least partially vaccinated by July 4. Though as things stand, it looks like the US is going to miss that target.

No word yet on whether Goldman workers will receive any kind of compensation for getting vaccinated. But seeing as the bank largely skipped bonus compensation offered to junior employees by other banks, we suspect junior bankers who comply will be doing so mostly out of the goodness of their hearts – and their unwillingness to lose their jobs.

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“We’re going to manage that. We’ve got codes, we’ve got, you know, if we have to shut down cabin categories or open cabin categories, we are going to make sure that’s on us, not you.”

Celebrity Cruises Has A Workaround For DeSantis’ Vaccine Passport Ban (F.)

For cruise operators, their mission impossible is to figure out how to follow both the guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Protection (CDC) — which recommends that 98% of crew and 95% of passengers on a ship be vaccinated before setting sail — and avoid violating a much-hyped law from Florida Governor Ron DeSantis that prohibits businesses in his state from verifying the vaccination status of individuals. The first ship slated to sail out of Florida in 15 months is Celebrity Edge, which will depart Fort Lauderdale on June 26 on a seven-night cruise to the Western Caribbean. That’s just the beginning. By mid-summer, nine of the cruise line’s 15 ships will be operating out of Florida and other ports.

On a call with travel agents on Tuesday, Dondra Ritzenthaler, senior VP of sales, trade support and service at Celebrity Cruises, outlined how Celebrity plans to thread the needle to stay on the right side of both the CDC guidance and the Florida law, according a scoop in the unofficial Royal Caribbean Blog, which is not affiliated with the cruise line. Forbes has also obtained a recording of the June 8 call. For context, this is the second such call within two weeks where Ritzenthaler has outlined a possible workaround to travel advisors. Forbes previously obtained a recording of a May 27 call where Ritzenthaler told agents that the DeSantis administration and major cruise lines had discussed a possible exemption to the Florida law for cruise lines. A DeSantis spokesperson denied that the governor had ever considered such an exemption and told reporters that Forbes had “misinterpreted” Ritzenthaler’s comments from that call.

Throughout Tuesday’s 46-minute call, Ritzenthaler outlined the CDC guidance and reiterated multiple times that 95% of passengers on all Celebrity ships would be fully vaccinated. “We will require documentation of full vaccination from all guests who are eligible,” she said. “This is for everybody, but Florida is a little bit different, okay?” “Florida — because we honor the government, we honor DeSantis — we will still go out with 100% of our crew and 95% of our guests vaccinated. But in Florida, we will not require you to have to show proof of vaccination, because we are doing this exactly the right way,” said Ritzenthaler.

“Our President and CEO, Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, right before this call, said, ‘Dondra, you reassure every travel adviser on this call that we will sail with 95% of our guests vaccinated,’” said Ritzenthaler, who did not explain in detail how Celebrity would accomplish this feat except to suggest that, instead of verifying passengers’ vaccination records at the port on embarkation day, Celebrity would manage the ratio of vaccinated-to-unvaccinated guests during the booking process. “Guys, the way we’re going to do that is we’re going to manage the sailing, right?” she told the hundreds of agents on the call. “We’re going to make sure that we open some cabin categories. We close some cabin categories. We are going to make sure that 95% of our guests are vaccinated.”

That would mean that only five percent of any ship’s inventory for any sailing would be made available to unvaccinated passengers. At the end of the call, Ritzenthaler fielded a question from a travel advisor asking for additional clarity on how the cruise line would achieve the 95% vaccination threshold. “That’s not anything you have to worry about,” Ritzenthaler reiterated. “We’re going to manage that. We’ve got codes, we’ve got, you know, if we have to shut down cabin categories or open cabin categories, we are going to make sure that’s on us, not you.”

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Don’t laugh, they’re serious.

The Global Pandemic Requires A Global Vaccination Plan (F.)

As world leaders gather for the annual G7 Leadership Summit, they have one job: end the pandemic by delivering a global roadmap to vaccinate the world. This must be a comprehensive, coordinated strategy that accelerates global Covid-19 vaccine access and delivery in order to achieve at least 70% coverage in all countries. Eighteen months into the Covid-19 pandemic, we find ourselves navigating a schism between the haves and the have-nots where those in high-income countries can see a light at the end of the pandemic tunnel while many in poorer countries are experiencing the persistence of this devastating crisis. More than 85% of vaccine doses administered to date have gone to people in high- and upper-middle-income countries. And low-income countries? Just 0.3%.

What was once the bright spot in the pandemic — the rapid development and manufacture of life-saving vaccines — now points to a vast moral failing. There are many reasons that this has happened, but it boils down to a difficult truth: there is still no end-to-end plan to vaccinate the world to at least 70% coverage and provide the support needed for every country to get vaccines delivered and administered safely. The system that allowed just a few countries to buy nearly all the world’s vaccine supply needs root and branch reform. But right now, we must collectively do more. We are calling for an end-to-end plan that addresses urgent gaps in vaccine supply and delivery. After all, vaccines alone don’t save lives — vaccinations do.

Though the commitment of COVAX — the mechanism to accelerate the development and manufacture of Covid-19 vaccines and guarantee fair and equitable vaccine access — is laudable, to date it is not enough. As WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said to the World Health Assembly, while COVAX has delivered 72 million doses to 125 countries, “those doses are sufficient for barely 1 percent of the combined population of those countries.” President Joe Biden’s announcement last week that shipments of surplus doses have begun is also promising, but global leaders must do more. According to the Launch & Scale Speedometer, the G7 countries (including the whole of the EU) have an excess of 3 billion doses, even after vaccinating their entire population. G7 countries have the opportunity to do the right thing. We urge leadership to share one billion doses by the end of August, and another billion by the end of the year to support the global vaccination effort.

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“The law aims to firmly safeguard the sovereign dignity and core interests of the country and oppose Western hegemony and power politics..”

China Passes Anti-Foreign Sanctions Law (Y!)

China on Thursday passed a new law to counter foreign sanctions, as it looks to build its defences against rising US and EU pressure over trade and human rights. Beijing has accused the United States of “suppressing” Chinese firms and issued veiled threats of retaliation after President Joe Biden last week expanded a blacklist of companies in which Americans are not allowed to invest. Countermeasures in the Chinese law include “refusal to issue visas, denial of entry, deportation… and sealing, seizing, and freezing property of individuals or businesses that adhere to foreign sanctions against Chinese businesses or officials,” according to the text published by the standing committee of the National People’s Congress, China’s top legislature. The restrictions can apply to family members of individuals who fall foul of Beijing.


The law also allows the country’s courts to punish companies that comply with foreign laws, and says that businesses or people in China do not need to comply with foreign restrictions. “The law aims to firmly safeguard the sovereign dignity and core interests of the country and oppose Western hegemony and power politics,” foreign ministry spokesman Wang Wenbing told a briefing. China has long complained about US sanctions and trade restrictions affecting Chinese companies, calling it an extraterritorial application of US law. Biden has stepped up US criticism of Beijing in recent months over the theft of intellectual property, and alleged human rights abuses in Hong Kong and the restive Xinjiang region. Last week, the White House expanded the blacklist of companies Americans are barred from investing in due to the firms’ links to Beijing’s military.

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“..in part responsible for the flood of cash that suddenly started to show up in the banking system that was already up to the gills in cash, and poured out from there.”

Cash Gone Nuts: Treasury General Account Drops to $674 Billion (WS)

The excess balances in the federal government’s checking account – the “Treasury General Account” (TGA) at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York – that had ballooned to $1.8 trillion by July 2020 plunged to $674 billion as of Wednesday, according to the Fed’s balance sheet, released today, the lowest since April 2, 2020, having now unwound most of the monetized-but-unspent debt-binge spike from spring last year. The Mnuchin Treasury started reducing the balance in the TGA in baby steps by borrowing less than they were spending. The Yellen Treasury announced in February that it would draw down the account to $500 billion by the end of June. $174 billion more to go:

Last spring, the government sold a gigantic amount of debt, piling an additional $3 trillion on top of its mountain of debt in just a few months. At the same time, the Fed bought $3 trillion in securities as part of its QE and wealth effect program, thereby monetizing nearly all of the $3 trillion in new debt that the government issued during that time. But the government didn’t spend all of the $3 trillion in proceeds from the new debt, and the TGA – a liability on the Fed’s balance sheet – soared from around $400 billion in February 2020 to $1.8 trillion in July. This $1.4 trillion addition that the government had borrowed and that the Fed had then monetized didn’t go into the economy and the markets but sat in the government’s checking account.


But now, during the drawdown of the TGA, that money has been going into the economy and the markets. The drawdown so far is money that the government has spent since February but didn’t have to collect in taxes or borrow from investors since it already borrowed it over a year ago, with the Fed having monetized the new debt. Since February, this money has started circulating in the economy, markets, and banking system, as the government spent it, and is in part responsible for the flood of cash that suddenly started to show up in the banking system that was already up to the gills in cash, and poured out from there.

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“..don’t fall asleep during the meeting.”

Trump Tells Biden To Give Putin His ‘Warmest Regards’ (F.)

Less than a week before President Joe Biden’s summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Geneva, Switzerland, former President Donald Trump put out a statement insisting his widely criticized 2018 Helsinki summit with Putin went “great” and telling Biden not to “fall asleep” when meeting with the strongman. Trump said in a statement he had a “great and productive” summit with Putin, at which he contradicted U.S. intelligence on alleged Russian collusion in the 2016 election, stating, “Putin says it’s not Russia. I don’t see any reason why it would be.” Trump said the negative image of that meeting is the result of a “belated Fake News portrayal,” claiming he “won much” from it, including the “respect of President Putin and Russia,” though what they actually discussed in their closed-door meeting remains a mystery.


Trump said it was the “obvious” choice for him to believe Russia over former U.S. intelligence officials with whom he has feuded, including former FBI directors James Comey and Andy McCabe. Trump wished Biden “good luck” in “dealing with President Putin,” and, in a continuation of attacks he made on Biden’s physical and mental capacity during the election, added “don’t fall asleep during the meeting.” “Because of the phony Russia, Russia, Russia Hoax, made-up and paid for by the Democrats and Crooked Hillary Clinton, the United States was put at a disadvantage—a disadvantage that was nevertheless overcome by me,” Trump said, reflecting how he feels his presidency was kneecapped by the Russia probe.

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The “trick” is more legislation?!

Convert New York’s Entire Grid to Renewables With This One Trick (Vice)

New York lawmakers are considering legislation that would drastically build out the state’s renewable energy offerings, a step toward a future in which some activists believe energy utilities could be fully renewable and municipally owned. The New York Build Public Renewables Act (Assembly Bill A1466A) would enable the New York Power Authority (NYPA)—the largest state public utility in the country—to develop and operate utility-scale renewable energy projects while requiring it to phase out fossil fuel infrastructure by 2025. The bill was introduced in January by State Senator Kevin Parker and Assemblymember Robert Carroll, and is championed by the Public Power NY Coalition—a statewide collective of environmental justice organizations that includes several Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) chapters and the NY Energy Democracy Alliance.

It is less radical than a previously considered piece of legislation that would have transitioned control over utilities to the state while banning for-profit energy service companies like National Grid and Con Edison. Advocates believe the passage of the Build Public Renewables Act would represent a first meaningful step toward climate action more than two years after the passage of New York’s landmark Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (CLCPA). Passed in 2019, the CLCPA established a set of legally-binding environmental targets requiring 70 percent of New York’s energy to come from renewable sources by 2030 in order to reduce statewide greenhouse gas emissions by 85 percent by 2050.

The CLCPA was once lauded as the the most ambitious piece of state climate legislation in the country, but activists like Charlie Heller, organizer with the Public Power Coalition, say the state hasn’t upheld its promises. (Just five percent of New York’s energy production is currently generated by wind and solar power, for example.) “If you really think it’s a climate emergency, you wouldn’t just sit there and not pass any major climate bills,” Heller said.

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Apr 222021
 
 April 22, 2021  Posted by at 8:50 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  50 Responses »


Giotto Lamentation 1306

 

Unvaccinated Worker Starts Outbreak In Mostly Vaccinated Nursing Home (NYT)
Mass Vaccination Sites Are Shutting Down Over ‘Decreased Demand’ (F.)
COVID Vaccine Blood Clot Risk Was Known, Ignored & Buried (Hudak)
Boris Johnson Says UK Will Have To ‘Learn To Live With Virus’ (RT)
The Covidian Cult – Part II (CJ Hopkins)
The Unraveling of the American Empire (Chris Hedges)
US Sanctions Only Make Russia’s Economy Even More Self-Sufficient (RT)
Putin Says Russia Developing High-Tech Nuclear & Laser Weapons (RT)
Prague Gives Moscow Ultimatum To Let Czech Diplomats Return (Y!)
Ukraine Encourages Western Allies To Kick Russia Out Of SWIFT (EurActiv)
Georgia & Ukraine Launch ‘Remarkable’ Attack On Academic Freedom (RT)
USPS ‘Covert Operations Program’ Monitors Americans’ Social Media Posts (Y!)
In Epic Hack, Signal Developer Turns Tables On Forensics Firm Cellebrite (AT)

 

 

 

 

Dr. Sucharit Bhakdi on blood clotting (full video below)

 

 

Sweden’s continuing success story.

 

 

If you can set off an outbreak where 90% is vaccinated, how can the answer be more vaccination and masks? Obviously, the vaccine doesn’t work as advertized.

And didn’t Pfizer-BioNTech say their contraption was 95% effective? Why then only 66% for these residents?

Note: The New York Times used the term “immunized” for the residents, but that doesn’t seem to be the same as “vaccinated”. Not anymore, at least.

Unvaccinated Worker Starts Outbreak In Mostly Vaccinated Nursing Home (NYT)

An unvaccinated health care worker set off a Covid-19 outbreak at a nursing home in Kentucky where the vast majority of residents had been vaccinated, leading to dozens of infections, including 22 cases among residents and employees who were already fully vaccinated, a new study reported Wednesday. Most of those who were infected with the coronavirus despite being vaccinated did not develop symptoms or require hospitalization, but one vaccinated individual, who was a resident of the nursing home, died, according to the study released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Altogether, 26 facility residents were infected, including 18 who had been vaccinated, and 20 health care personnel were infected, including four who had been vaccinated. Two unvaccinated residents also died.

The report underscores the importance of vaccinating both nursing home residents and health care workers who go in and out of the sites, the authors said. While 90 percent of the 83 residents at the Kentucky nursing home had been vaccinated, only half of the 116 employees had been vaccinated when the outbreak was identified in March of this year. The study, released in tandem with one involving Chicago nursing homes, underscored the importance of maintaining measures like use of protective gear, infection control protocols and routine testing, no matter the level of vaccination rates. The rise of virus variants also has increased concerns. Resistance to vaccines has been steep among nursing home staffs nationwide, and the low acceptance rates of vaccination increase the likelihood of outbreaks in facilities, according to the authors, a team of investigators from the C.D.C. and Kentucky’s public health department.

“To protect skilled nursing facility residents, it is imperative that health care providers, as well as skilled nursing facility residents, be vaccinated,” the authors of the Kentucky study wrote. The outbreak involved a variant of the virus that has multiple mutations in the spike protein, of the kind that make the vaccines less effective. Vaccinated residents and health care workers at the Kentucky facility were less likely to be infected than those who had not been vaccinated, and they were far less likely to develop symptoms. The study estimated that the vaccine, identified as Pfizer-BioNTech, showed effectiveness of 66 percent for residents and 75.9 percent for employees, and were 86 percent to 87 percent effective at protecting against symptomatic disease.

Read more …

The video is hilarious. Fauci claims that Texas is doing so well without lockdown because Texans behave so much better than locked down Michiganians.

Other than that, he doesn’t answer Jordan’s question, but the chairman says he did anyway. “Your time is up.” It’s like comedy hour.

Mass Vaccination Sites Are Shutting Down Over ‘Decreased Demand’ (F.)

Mass vaccination sites across the U.S. have announced plans to shut down in recent days due to insufficient demand, even though all U.S. adults are now eligible to receive coronavirus vaccines. Palm Beach County, Florida, is shutting down three mass vaccination sites in favor of new mobile vaccination efforts, the Palm Beach Post reported Wednesday, after the sites were operating at only 50% capacity this week. Mass vaccination sites in Clarkesville, Georgia, and North Carolina will shut down by the end of May, officials announced this week, and Summit County, Ohio, canceled a planned mass vaccination clinic on April 27 citing “decreased demand.”

Several Texas mass vaccination sites in Williamson and Galveston counties are shutting down, and Galveston officials asked the state not to send the county any vaccine next week as the number of residents making vaccine appointments declines. Waukesha County, Wisconsin, will likely shut down its mass vaccine site to new first doses by the end of the week, as the county hits its target of 60% of eligible residents being vaccinated. Some vaccination locations have made plans to close before this week: Sites in Las Vegas and Cascade County, Montana, were announced to be shutting down last week, for instance, while Mercer County, Ohio, shuttered their drive-through mass vaccine clinic earlier in April.

Officials are reporting noticeable decreases in the number of people getting inoculated in areas where sites are not closing, including in Texas, Idaho, Missouri, Alabama, Maine and Maryland, where Gov. Larry Hogan predicted Wednesday the state would be shutting down mass vaccination sites “at some point soon.” 3.02 million. That’s the seven-day average of Covid-19 vaccines administered in the U.S. each day as of Wednesday, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data analyzed by the New York Times. That average has been steadily declining in recent days after peaking at approximately 3.3 million shots per day last week.

Jim Jordan Fauci

Read more …

Cerebral Venous Thrombosis: all of its symptoms seem to be identical to what we are told COVID-19 symptoms are.

COVID Vaccine Blood Clot Risk Was Known, Ignored & Buried (Hudak)

Joining us today is Dr. Sucharit Bhakdi, here to discuss the ‘dangerous mRNA vaccines’ and how he and his organization warned about the blood clots (and much else now coming to pass) that we are now seeing from the COVID-19 injections, months before they began. He stresses that it is important that we come to understand what Cerebral Venous Thrombosis is, and why all of its symptoms seem to be identical to what we are told COVID-19 symptoms are.

Read more …

So much for the vaccine success.

All of a sudden dexamethasone pops up again. Ivermectin next?!

Boris Johnson Says UK Will Have To ‘Learn To Live With Virus’ (RT)

The UK will be hit by yet another wave of Covid infections later this year, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said as he revealed that the government was looking into treating people with tablets against the disease. “The majority of scientific opinion in this country is still firmly of the view that there will be another wave of Covid at some stage this year and so we must as far as possible learn to live with this disease,” he told a news briefing on Tuesday. The PM added that with record infection levels around the world, “we cannot delude ourselves that Covid has gone away.” He also said he saw nothing in the data to suggest the UK would have to deviate from its “cautious but irreversible” roadmap out of lockdown.


Johnson also announced the creation of a new antivirals taskforce to help with the search for new medicines and support their development in clinical trials in order to make them available by the autumn. He said the treatments could include a tablet that would stop people with Covid-19 becoming severely ill, or a pill to prevent someone contracting the virus from close contacts who are infected. The PM did not say if such treatments were currently being trialled. The UK was the first country to repurpose dexamethasone to treat Covid-19, Johnson said. The drug is usually used to treat severe allergies, skin conditions and inflammation.

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“..society has been transformed into something resembling an infectious disease ward, or an enormous hospital from which there is no escape.”

The Covidian Cult – Part II (CJ Hopkins)

How did we ever get to this point … to the point where, as I put it in The Covidian Cult, “instead of the cult existing as an island within the dominant culture, the cult has become the dominant culture, and those of us who have not joined the cult have become the isolated islands within it?” To understand this, one needs to understand how cults control the minds of their members, because totalitarian ideological movements operate more or less the same way, just on a much larger, societal scale. There is a wealth of research and knowledge on this subject (I mentioned Robert J. Lifton in my earlier essay), but, to keep things simple, I’ll just use Margaret Singer’s “Six Conditions of Mind Control” from her 1995 book, Cults in Our Midst, as a lens to view the Covidian Cult through.

Six Conditions of Mind Control

1. Keep the person unaware of what is going on and how she or he is being changed a step at a time. Potential new members are led, step by step, through a behavioral-change program without being aware of the final agenda or full content of the group. Looking back, it is easy to see how people were conditioned, step by step, to accept the “New Normal” ideology. They were bombarded with terrifying propaganda, locked down, stripped of their civil rights, forced to wear medical-looking masks in public, to act out absurd “social-distancing” rituals, submit to constant “testing,” and all the rest of it. Anyone not complying with this behavioral-change program or challenging the veracity and rationality of the new ideology was demonized as a “conspiracy theorist,” a “Covid denier,” an “anti-vaxxer,” in essence, an enemy of the cult, like a “suppresive person” in the Church of Scientology.

2. Control the person’s social and/or physical environment; especially control the person’s time. For over a year now, the “New Normal” authorities have controlled the social/physical environment, and how New Normals spend their time, with lockdowns, social-distancing rituals, closure of “non-essential” businesses, omnipresent propaganda, isolation of the elderly, travel restrictions, mandatory mask-rules, protest bans, and now the segregation of the “Unvaccinated.” Basically, society has been transformed into something resembling an infectious disease ward, or an enormous hospital from which there is no escape. You’ve seen the photos of the happy New Normals dining out at restaurants, relaxing at the beach, jogging, attending school, and so on, going about their “normal” lives with their medical-looking masks and prophylactic face shields. What you’re looking at is the pathologization of society, the pathologization of everyday life, the physical (social) manifestation of a morbid obsession with disease and death.

3. Systematically create a sense of powerlessness in the person. What kind of person could feel more powerless than an obedient New Normal sitting at home, obsessively logging the “Covid death” count, sharing photos of his medical-looking mask and post-“vaccination” bandage on Facebook, as he waits for permission from the authorities to go outdoors, visit his family, kiss his lover, or shake hands with a colleague? The fact that in the Covidian Cult the traditional charismatic cult leader has been replaced by a menagerie of medical experts and government officials does not change the utter dependency and abject powerlessness of its members, who have been reduced to a state approaching infancy. This abject powerlessness is not experienced as a negative; on the contrary, it is proudly celebrated. Thus the mantra-like repetition of the “New Normal” platitude “Trust the Science!” by people who, if you try to show them the science, melt down completely and start jabbering aggressive nonsense at you to shut you up.

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“War, when it is waged to serve utopian absurdities [..] descends into a quagmire.”

“All we really make anymore are weapons. Once this is understood, perpetual war makes sense, at least for those who profit from it.”

The Unraveling of the American Empire (Chris Hedges)

America’s defeat in Afghanistan is one in a string of catastrophic military blunders that herald the death of the American empire. With the exception of the first Gulf War, fought largely by mechanized units in the open desert that did not — wisely — attempt to occupy Iraq, the United States political and military leadership has stumbled from one military debacle to another. Korea. Vietnam. Lebanon. Afghanistan. Iraq. Syria. Libya. The trajectory of military fiascos mirrors the sad finales of the Chinese, Ottoman, Hapsburg, Russian, French, British, Dutch, Portuguese and Soviet empires. While each of these empires decayed with their own peculiarities, they all exhibited patterns of dissolution that characterize the American experiment.

Imperial ineptitude is matched by domestic ineptitude. The collapse of good government at home, with legislative, executive and judicial systems all seized by corporate power, ensures that the incompetent and the corrupt, those dedicated not to the national interest but to swelling the profits of the oligarchic elite, lead the country into a cul-de-sac. Rulers and military leaders, driven by venal self-interest, are often buffoonish characters in a grand comic operetta. How else to think of Allen Dulles, Dick Cheney, George W. Bush, Donald Trump or the hapless Joe Biden? While their intellectual and moral vacuity is often darkly amusing, it is murderous and savage when directed towards their victims.

There is not a single case since 1941 when the coups, political assassinations, election fraud, black propaganda, blackmail, kidnapping, brutal counter-insurgency campaigns, U.S. sanctioned massacres, torture in global black sites, proxy wars or military interventions carried out by the United States resulted in the establishment of a democratic government. The two-decade-long wars in the Middle East, the greatest strategic blunder in American history, have only left in their wake one failed state after another. Yet, no one in the ruling class is held accountable.

War, when it is waged to serve utopian absurdities, such as implanting a client government in Baghdad that will flip the region, including Iran, into U.S. protectorates, or when, as in Afghanistan, there is no vision at all, descends into a quagmire. The massive allocation of money and resources to the U.S. military, which includes Biden’s request for $715 billion for the Defense Department in fiscal year 2022, a $11.3 billion, or 1.6 percent increase, over 2021, is not in the end about national defense. The bloated military budget is designed, as Seymour Melman explained in his book, The Permanent War Economy, primarily to keep the American economy from collapsing. All we really make anymore are weapons. Once this is understood, perpetual war makes sense, at least for those who profit from it.

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For decades now.

US Sanctions Only Make Russia’s Economy Even More Self-Sufficient (RT)

As Washington threatens to impose more sanctions on Russia, analysts expect Moscow’s response to be the same as usual – speeding up the drive to make the nation’s economy more self-sufficient. “The Americans are saying: be careful or we could do more, but Russia is just going to continue down the path toward economic autarky,” the deputy chief economist at the Institute of International Finance in Washington, Elina Ribakova, told Bloomberg. The administration of US President Joe Biden on Sunday warned of “consequences” if opposition activist Alexey Navalny were to die in prison. The warning followed the introduction by Washington of new economic penalties over claims of Russian hacking and election interference. The measures include a ban on purchases of bonds on Russia’s primary market.

However, President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, said on Friday that the fundamentals of the Russian economy were unaffected by the move. “Macroeconomic stability is fully ensured,” Peskov said, “and the efficiency of our economic bloc is recognized internationally. We have no reason to doubt this state of affairs.” International rating agencies confirm that Russia is well positioned for a near-term market disruption because it has a high cash buffer and demand from local banks is robust, according to Fitch. Moody’s said on Monday that Russia’s financial reserves will allow the country to cope with the negative effects of the sanctions. Ratings agency S&P also noted that the sanctions will not have a significant impact on the replenishment of the Russian budget and will not undermine the stability of the country’s financial markets.

Experts point out that during the seven years of Western sanctions on Russia over Ukraine, the Russian government and central bank reduced the country’s exposure to dollars, shifted assets out of the US, and sold a smaller share of its debt to foreigners. Russia has been reshaping its international holdings, cutting the share of the US dollar in favor of other currencies and gold. The country’s foreign reserve holdings have been steadily growing in recent years, and amounted to $580.5 billion as of April 9. Despite the coronavirus pandemic, the reserves surged by over $40 billion last year. The share of gold in Russia’s forex reserves jumped above dollars for the first time on record in 2020. The precious metal made up 24% of the central bank’s stockpile as of the end of September. The share of dollar assets was 22%, down from more than 40% in 2018.

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“I hope no one will think of crossing red lines in their relations with Russia. Where that line sits is ours to determine.”

Putin Says Russia Developing High-Tech Nuclear & Laser Weapons (RT)

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said that the vast majority of the country’s Soviet-era atomic stockpile will soon be replaced by modern weapons, warning that Moscow is intent on defending itself against foreign aggression. Speaking as part of his annual address to the Federal Assembly in Moscow on Wednesday, Putin said that his government “wants to have positive relationships with everyone on the international stage, including those with whom relations have broken down recently. We really don’t want to burn bridges.” At the same time, however, he cautioned that “those who mistake this stance for weakness need to know that Russia’s response [to any aggression] will be asymmetrical, swift and harsh.”

Those planning provocations, he said, “will regret their deeds in a way they have not regretted anything else for a long time.” As part of the country’s plans to defend itself, he said, its stockpile of strategic weapons is currently being overhauled, updating older Soviet-era equipment in favor of next-generation technology, such as “hypersonic and laser” armaments. Among the overhaul, he revealed that the advanced RS-28 Sarmat missile will be delivered to troops in the field from 2022. A heavy intercontinental ballistic rocket, it boasts up to 15 nuclear warheads which can be directed against individual targets and each deliver 350 kilotons of atomic hellfire. Ship-mounted missiles and other, “next-generation” projectiles are also slated for deployment in the near future.

According to the president, more than two-thirds of Russia’s military equipment will be “modern” at the end of the next three years, while more than 88% of nuclear weapons will be this year as well. Putin also referenced the Peresvet, a secretive laser cannon that is said to have the potential to shoot down both enemy aircraft and incoming missiles. The weapon has reportedly already been deployed to installations across the country. “We have patience, self-confidence and righteousness on our side,” Putin added. “I hope no one will think of crossing red lines in their relations with Russia. Where that line sits is ours to determine.”

The US is currently reportedly developing a $100 billion ground-based intercontinental ballistic missile system to replace its Cold War-era Minuteman-III rockets. However, it has come under criticism from experts, with the Federation of American Scientists arguing that the program has been driven by industry lobbying rather than a genuine need for the launch complex “in a post-Cold War security environment.”

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“We suggest Prague leave ultimatums for communication within NATO,” said spokeswoman Maria Zakharova. “With Russia such a tone is unacceptable.”

Prague Gives Moscow Ultimatum To Let Czech Diplomats Return (Y!)

The Czech government on Wednesday warned Moscow it might expel more Russian diplomats unless the 20 Czech nationals ejected from Russia were allowed to return to work within a day. Moscow responded by saying the ultimatum was “unacceptable”. On Saturday, Prague expelled 18 Russian embassy staff in a row over Russia’s alleged role in an explosion that killed two people in the Czech Republic in 2014. Moscow sent back the Czech diplomats in retaliation on Monday. “The Russian Federation has until 1200 tomorrow (1000 GMT) to allow the return of all expelled diplomats back to the Czech embassy in Moscow,” Jakub Kulhanek, the new Czech foreign minister, told reporters. “If they cannot return, I will cut the number of Russian embassy staff in Prague so it would correspond to the current situation at the Czech embassy in Moscow,” he added.

After summoning Russian ambassador Alexander Zmeyevski, Kulhanek said Moscow’s retaliation had been “disproportionate and it in fact paralysed the embassy”. The Russian foreign ministry condemned the Czech position. “We suggest Prague leave ultimatums for communication within NATO,” said spokeswoman Maria Zakharova. “With Russia such a tone is unacceptable.” The Czech ambassador would be summoned on Thursday, she added. Prague currently has five diplomats and 19 technical staff at the embassy in Moscow, far fewer than the Russian workforce in Prague. “The expulsion of 18 Russian diplomats in turn did not jeopardise the functioning of the Russian embassy,” said Kulhanek, who was only appointed as minister on Wednesday.

The EU backed the Czech Republic as its foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said the bloc stood “ready to support its further efforts to bring those responsible to justice”. “The EU condemns the disproportionate reaction and subsequent threats of Russian Federation towards the Czech Republic,” Borrell said in a statement, vowing “the staunchest resolve” in addressing disruptive acts by Russian intelligence on EU soil. Czech officials, including Interior Minister Jan Hamacek, who was standing in as foreign minister until Kulhanek’s appointment, said Tuesday that they might aim to reset relations with Russia — and that this could involve the expulsion of all Russian diplomats in Prague. [..] Hamacek also said that Prague would no longer consider buying Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine against Covid-19.

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Creating chaos through proxies.

Ukraine Encourages Western Allies To Kick Russia Out Of SWIFT (EurActiv)

Ukraine on Wednesday (21 April) urged Western allies to show they were prepared to punish Moscow with new sanctions, including kicking Russia out of the global SWIFT payments system, to deter the Kremlin from resorting to more military force against Ukraine. In an interview with Reuters, Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said while Kyiv had no new information indicating that Russia had decided to take new military action against Ukraine, it was important for the West to act now to prevent that happening.Ukraine is trying to shore up international support in its standoff with Moscow over a build-up of Russian troops on its eastern border and in Crimea. “I have no information to state that the decision to launch a military operation against Ukraine has already been taken. So it can go in either direction now,” Kuleba said.

“And this is why the reaction of the West, the consolidated reaction of the West, is so important now, to prevent Putin … from making that decision.” Kyiv and Moscow have traded blame for a collapse in the ceasefire in the eastern Donbass region, where Ukrainian troops have battled Russian-backed forces in a conflict Kyiv says has killed 14,000 people since 2014. Kuleba said he asked Washington to supply “powerful means of electronic warfare” to counter Russia’s capacity to jam Ukrainian communications when he met US Secretary of State Antony Blinken last week. He also revealed he had urged a meeting of European Union foreign ministers on Monday to consider “banning Russia from SWIFT” as part of a package of new economic sanctions if Russia escalated the situation.

[..] Putin on Wednesday warned the West not to cross Russia’s “red lines”, saying Moscow would respond swiftly and harshly to any provocations. “I read the message of President Putin the following way: ‘we will be crossing your red lines, but you are not allowed to cross our red lines, and we will be defining where our red lines are,’” Kuleba said.

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The University’s riposte is great.

Georgia & Ukraine Launch ‘Remarkable’ Attack On Academic Freedom (RT)

A professor from Ireland’s Dublin City University has lambasted a “remarkable attempt to undermine academic freedom” from the embassies of Georgia and Ukraine after they complained about a course he teaches at the institution. Donnacha Ó Beacháin is an internationally-respected professor with extensive experience teaching students about politics in the countries that once formed the Soviet Union. He was targeted by two diplomats who claimed that his program, named ‘Russia and the post-Soviet space’, was spreading “disinformation and Russian propaganda narratives.” Georgia and Ukraine, who both have strained relationships with Moscow, are covered in the course.

In particular, Ó Beacháin was accused of inviting a “well-known Russian propagandist” to speak. In fact, the person in question was Sergey Markedonov, a visiting fellow at the Washington-based think tank CSIS, which receives funding from the US government. Ó Beacháin described him as “probably the leading authority in Russia on conflicts in the Caucasus.” As well as inviting Markedonov, the professor also pointed out that the course has had a guest speaker from Ukraine, and he even asked the current Georgian ambassador to address the students. “The module is called ‘Russia and the Former Soviet Space,’ but if the Georgia/Ukraine diplomats had their way, the only view we wouldn’t get is from Russia,” Ó Beacháin wrote on Twitter.

In a letter to the embassies, the university’s president, Dáire Keogh, stressed the importance of “academic freedom” and noted that the professor had “invited guests from different backgrounds to expose students to their points of view.” “Those invited to contribute to the module include speakers from Georgian and Ukrainian backgrounds, including former officials,” the letter said. Speaking to Ireland’s state broadcaster, RTE, Ó Beacháin’s colleague John Doyle blasted the complaints as “absolutely unprecedented,” noting that there has never been another issue when an embassy not only complained to a university professor, but also contacted the Department of Foreign Affairs – presumably attempting to create a diplomatic incident.

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The Postal Service? What’s next, the supermarket?

USPS ‘Covert Operations Program’ Monitors Americans’ Social Media Posts (Y!)

The law enforcement arm of the U.S. Postal Service has been quietly running a program that tracks and collects Americans’ social media posts, including those about planned protests, according to a document obtained by Yahoo News. The details of the surveillance effort, known as iCOP, or Internet Covert Operations Program, have not previously been made public. The work involves having analysts trawl through social media sites to look for what the document describes as “inflammatory” postings and then sharing that information across government agencies. “Analysts with the United States Postal Inspection Service (USPIS) Internet Covert Operations Program (iCOP) monitored significant activity regarding planned protests occurring internationally and domestically on March 20, 2021,” says the March 16 government bulletin, marked as “law enforcement sensitive” and distributed through the Department of Homeland Security’s fusion centers. “Locations and times have been identified for these protests, which are being distributed online across multiple social media platforms, to include right-wing leaning Parler and Telegram accounts.”


A number of groups were expected to gather in cities around the globe on March 20 as part of a World Wide Rally for Freedom and Democracy, to protest everything from lockdown measures to 5G. “Parler users have commented about their intent to use the rallies to engage in violence. Image 3 on the right is a screenshot from Parler indicating two users discussing the event as an opportunity to engage in a ‘fight’ and to ‘do serious damage,’” says the bulletin.

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Hacking the hackers turns out to be easy.

In Epic Hack, Signal Developer Turns Tables On Forensics Firm Cellebrite (AT)

For years, Israeli digital forensics firm Cellebrite has helped governments and police around the world break into confiscated mobile phones, mostly by exploiting vulnerabilities that went overlooked by device manufacturers. Now, Moxie Marlinspike—creator of the Signal messaging app—has turned the tables on Cellebrite. On Wednesday, Marlinspike published a post that reported vulnerabilities in Cellebrite software that allowed him to execute malicious code on the Windows computer used to analyze devices. The researcher and software engineer exploited the vulnerabilities by loading specially formatted files that can be embedded into any app installed on the device. “There are virtually no limits on the code that can be executed,” Marlinspike wrote.

He continued: “For example, by including a specially formatted but otherwise innocuous file in an app on a device that is then scanned by Cellebrite, it’s possible to execute code that modifies not just the Cellebrite report being created in that scan, but also all previous and future generated Cellebrite reports from all previously scanned devices and all future scanned devices in any arbitrary way (inserting or removing text, email, photos, contacts, files, or any other data), with no detectable timestamp changes or checksum failures. This could even be done at random, and would seriously call the data integrity of Cellebrite’s reports into question.”

Cellebrite provides two software packages: The UFED breaks through locks and encryption protections to collect deleted or hidden data, and a separate Physical Analyzer uncovers digital evidence (“trace events”). To do their job, both pieces of Cellebrite software must parse all kinds of untrusted data stored on the device being analyzed. Typically, software that is this promiscuous undergoes all kinds of security hardening to detect and fix any memory-corruption or parsing vulnerabilities that might allow hackers to execute malicious code. “Looking at both UFED and Physical Analyzer, though, we were surprised to find that very little care seems to have been given to Cellebrite’s own software security,” Marlinspike wrote. “Industry-standard exploit mitigation defenses are missing, and many opportunities for exploitation are present.”

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