Dec 052022
 
 December 5, 2022  Posted by at 9:17 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  84 Responses »


Pablo Picasso Chair 1942

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rogan Willink

 

 

 

 

Phones

 

 

 

 

Robert Kennedy Jr.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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

Elon Musk: Worse Than Hitler (Titania McGrath)

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Under oath, we may hope.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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How to really rig a election. What a joke.

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

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

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

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

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How much does Big Tech donate to the GOP?

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

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

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

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

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Europe has exactly one voice of reason.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Look, you lost…

EU Should Sue US – Lawmaker (RT)

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

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

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

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Yeah, that’s gonna happen…

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

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

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

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

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Today the total ban goes into effect. Right.

Italy Justifies Russian Gas Imports (RT)

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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


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

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VAERS.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Maajid George Webb

 

 

Cryptome

 

 

Vivaldi Accordeon

 

 

Bird colors

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Nov 302022
 
 November 30, 2022  Posted by at 9:20 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , ,  35 Responses »


Pablo Picasso Coffee maker 1943

 

Twitter Stops Enforcing COVID-19 Misinformation Policy (ZH)
‘Negative Efficacy’ Should Have Stopped COVID Vaccine Recommendations (ET)
12 Ways To Hold Big Pharma Accountable For Covid Evils (Fed.)
A Look from Inside – The Fauci Deposition
Elon Musk’s Twitter Is A Monster Of The Left’s Own Making (QTR)
Musk Says Exposé of Twitter’s ‘Free Speech Suppression’ Coming ‘Soon’ (ET)
Kremlin Outlines Conditions For Ukraine Talks (RT)
NATO Says ‘Door is Open’ for Ukraine Membership….But (Celente)
EU Fails To Agree On Russian Oil Price Cap As Full Ban Looms (ZH)
Rand Paul Calls Out Complete Lack Of Oversight On Ukraine Aid (SN)
The Four Fuckeries (Jim Kunstler)
Will The US Try To Pull Off A “Grenada” In Serbia? (Saker)
US Paralyzed By Islamic Republic Of Iran’s Strategic Swing (Escobar)
Apple Turns Off China Protest Communication Tool (SN)
SBF Doesn’t Know What Happened To His Twitter Stake (Axios)

 

 

 

 

Actual scientists are speaking out. Watch. “Most of them fall asleep crying.”

 

 

 

 

Finland PM Marin Sanna visits New Zealand.

 

 

 

 

A good step, but only step no. 1. You will have to address the lives lost due to censorship of for instance doctors, on top of the whole Pfizer/Fauci/White House/EU terror. Twitter is complicit in this.

Twitter Stops Enforcing COVID-19 Misinformation Policy (ZH)

Twitter will no longer enforce its Covid-19 misinformation policy, under which users who deviated from prevailing establishment narratives frequently had their accounts locked or suspended. The longstanding policy did not apply to misinformation from government officials, who regularly lied about things such as transmission, masks, vaccine efficacy, side effects, or any of the other ‘science’ which turned out to be patently false. Twitter did not officially announce the change, rather, the company added a note to a page on its website outlining its Covid-19 policy. “Effective November 23, 2022, Twitter is no longer enforcing the COVID-19 misleading information policy,” reads the note, which follows a line that still reads: “As the global community faces the COVID-19 pandemic together, Twitter is helping people find reliable information, connect with others, and follow what’s happening in real time.”

What’s more, Sky News reports that the company’s Covid-19 ‘misleading information’ policy was nuked, which showed that the company operated on a strike system in which those who had a label added to their tweets were given one strike, while those with deleted tweets were given two strikes. Users with two to three strikes would have a 12-hour lockout, while those with four strikes were permanently suspended. “The platform suspended more than 11,000 accounts and removed nearly 98,000 pieces of content for violating its COVID misinformation policy between January 2022 and September 2022, according to information published by Twitter. The site also reduced the visibility of tweets or accounts believed to be in violation of the policy by stopping tweets or retweets from those accounts appearing in certain parts of Twitter, displaying their replies in lower positions in conversations and excluding their tweets or account from recommendations on the site.” -Sky News

Of note, half of Twitter’s content moderation, human rights and communications teams were laid off when new owner Elon Musk took over. Hundreds more left after Musk issued an ultimatum to staff requiring them to sign up for “long hours at high intensity” or leave.


Twitter reports that since January of 2020, 11.72M accounts were “challenged,” 11,230 accounts were suspended, and 97,674 pieces of content were “removed.”

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Talk about sliding scales. Not even when we knew the mRNA was endangering and killing people, did we stop.

‘Negative Efficacy’ Should Have Stopped COVID Vaccine Recommendations (ET)

It is a well known fact that COVID vaccine effectiveness wanes quickly as time goes on; this is confirmed by countless studies. Although the official narrative for COVID-19 vaccines nowadays only emphasizes its efficacy on protection against ICU admission and death rates, it actually implies the indisputable fact that vaccines don’t protect, contrary to their design, against infection or even symptomatic infection, especially after the emergence of various Omicron variants. Even the protection two shots offers against hospitalization drops to about 40 percent after less than a year. It’s actually looking worse for protection against severe symptoms, as efficacy rates seem to drop into the negatives about five months into full vaccination.


When a vaccine’s efficacy drops into the negatives, it means that vaccination actually elevates the risks of hospitalization and severe diseases rather than reducing the risks. In simple terms, it does more harm than good when the efficacy is negative. During the time prior to the pandemic, any vaccine with an efficacy less than 50 percent would be regarded as a poor product. When a product shows negative efficacy, it should be banned. It seems that the pandemic isn’t only bad for our health, but also is tugging at our common sense.

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No room for all twelve here.

12 Ways To Hold Big Pharma Accountable For Covid Evils (Fed.)

What is the common denominator between the pharmaceutical companies, the public health bureaucracy, medical associations, the corporate media, and Big Tech companies when it comes to censorship and medical misinformation? Money, of course. According to Statista, the pharmaceutical and medical industry spent $5.6 billion on U.S. television advertising in 2021, second only behind the life and entertainment industry at $10.1 billion. For reference, total U.S. TV ad spending is expected to exceed $68 billion in 2022. According to eMarketer, pharmaceutical and health care companies combined spent an estimated $9.5 billion on digital media in 2020, with 56 percent going toward search advertising, dominated by Google and Facebook, which have aggressively censored medical information that deviated from the official public health narrative.

This accounted for about 7.1 percent of all U.S. digital ad spending. The pharma industry pays, in the form of user fees, for 75 percent of the FDA’s drug review budget, according to Forbes, and 45 percent of its overall budget. One investigation showed that 40 of 107 physician advisers on the FDA committees examined “received more than $10,000 in post hoc earnings or research support from the makers of drugs that the panels voted to approve, or from competing firms.” According to an analysis by the Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has numerous conflicts of interest, including openly accepting private gifts through the CDC Foundation, accepting supposedly “prohibited” donations, and “automatic” conflict of interest waivers for advisory committee members.

In 2010, the CDC inspector general noted a “systemic lack of oversight” of its ethics program. The CDC uses taxpayer money to develop patents and then receives money from pharma companies in the form of licenses and royalties. The NIAID, headed by Fauci, also accepts donations, such as a $100 million pledge by Bill Gates for work on gene therapies. Individual public health officials and scientists, including Fauci and former NIH Director Francis Collins, receive royalties on patents used by the industry, teaching hospitals accept industry donations, and doctors accept “consulting fees,” and other travel and meals payments from pharma companies when they promote their products.

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Strange story: a 7-hour Fauci deposition, and absolute crickets from the media.

Jim Hoft and attorney John Burns were present at the deposition. Excellent read.

A Look from Inside – The Fauci Deposition

Here are some observations and highlights from the Fauci deposition: ** Fauci is a skillful liar. As we have seen now for months in his public comments, he lies when he feels he can get away with it or when he feels there will be no meaningful consequences. ** Fauci frequently lied unless and until he was confronted with alternate facts. For example, he claimed he really wasn’t familiar with Ralph Baric (creator of the COVID virus) or Peter Daszak (who brokered Fauci’s NIAID grant money to the Chinese biolab in Wuhan), until he was confronted with evidence that his own chief of staff emailed him describing Daszak and Baric as being part of Fauci’s team! ** Fauci claimed that he had no knowledge that his communications team did not coordinate with social media companies to stop “misinformation and disinformation” until he was forced to admit that he actually did know of certain instances of coordination.

** Fauci continued to push the now-debunked assertion that COVID-19 was a naturally occurring virus. ** Fauci said disinformation and misinformation (information he disagrees with) puts lives at risk. ** Fauci refused to define “gain of function” research saying it was too broad of a term to define. ** FUN FACT: until VERY recently, Fauci’s daughter worked for Twitter. ** FUN FACT: Fauci is a hypochondriac. In a bizarre and stunning segment during the deposition, Fauci blew off some of his frustration on the poor court reporter. The court reporter transcribing the deposition sneezed, and Fauci stopped the deposition and scolded the court reporter: “WHAT’S WRONG WITH YOU??? Do you have some sort of respiratory illness, because in the era of COVID, I’m concerned about being near you.” Court Reporter: “I’m not sick, I just have allergies. I can wear a mask though.” Fauci: “Ok. Thank you, because the last thing I want is to get COVID. [notably, (1) Fauci himself did not wear a mask at any point during the deposition, and (2) he appeared to be several feet away from the court reporter].

** FUN FACT: in another Fauci hypochondria spasm, Fauci conspicuously mean-mugged Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry after Landry sneezed into his suit coat jacket. ** Gamesmanship. Whenever introduced to a difficult topic, he dishonestly refused to define key terms so he could avoid being pinned down and held accountable. For example, when discussing the topic of “gain of function” research, he refused to acknowledge what the term meant, objecting that it was a term so broad it could not be defined. ** Fauci repeatedly claimed that he “couldn’t recall” or “couldn’t remember,” and attempted to bolster these incredible statements by appealing to the volume of emails he would receive or issues or studies that would come across his desk. This is simply not credible for nearly all of such statements, because the incidents in question were either recent or within the past three years, and they were all highly politically charged.

[..] ** Other Fauci deceit tactics: throwing subordinates under the bus. Fauci is a famous survivor among bureaucrats. One way he has survived this long is by only taking credit for wins and pawning off losses on hapless subordinates. This trend continued in his deposition, in which he brazenly argued that, while he is the head of the NIAID and its $6 billion dollar budget, he repeatedly didn’t have any knowledge about what his immediate direct reports were doing right under his nose. Fauci supports accountability, so long as he has a subordinate to sacrifice.

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“The social media platform had been the topic of political discussions about censorship, but no one had really done anything about it.”

Elon Musk’s Twitter Is A Monster Of The Left’s Own Making (QTR)

I don’t believe Musk about everything, as my long-time followers know, but I do believe him when he says the platform has become more popular since he took it over. Not only is it more entertaining than its ever been, it’s simply a nice feeling not to have to run my Tweets over in my head before publishing them, thinking: “What would some hyper left-wing hipster in a beret in an office in San Francisco working a 4 hour work week as a content moderator think of what I’m about to post?” But this article isn’t just for those who are enjoying Twitter’s re-birth. More importantly, it’s for those who are having emotional meltdowns over it. What these users, former users, advertisers and general fragile individuals need to understand is that Elon Musk buying Twitter never even happens without an environment that creates the impetus for it to take place.

Putting Musk’s actual motives aside (I have often wondered if he actually wanted to buy Twitter when it came down to brass tacks), he projected publicly that his interest in taking a stake in the company was because they were actively suppressing free speech. Soon, a public discussion about Twitter’s censorship – which had kicked off years prior when Tim Pool publicly skewered head Twitter censor Vijaya Gadde on Joe Rogan’s podcast – was on the table. The social media platform had been the topic of political discussions about censorship, but no one had really done anything about it. Nobody made drastic moves to affect change. And love him or hate him, that’s exactly what Elon Musk did. The impetus for Musk to throw his hat in the ring on the discussion wasn’t just run-of-the-mill moderation issues, either. It was, instead, an incessant and burning need to eliminate content that Twitter didn’t view as favorable to its political leanings.

No matter what side of the aisle you’re on politically, it’s tough to push back against the idea that conservatives were targeted for suspension disproportionately on the platform. Furthermore, legitimate news stories that otherwise would have been worthy of Pulitzer Prizes – like the New York Post’s Hunter Biden laptop story – were actively blackballed from the platform and users who discussed them risked being suspended or banned. These are nearly the very same actions that Beijing takes on Chinese social media when a story or narrative gets out that isn’t stamped with the government’s approval. Now, it looks as though we’re going to find out exactly what was going on behind the scenes at Twitter when the decision to actively censor a major story that could have had an impact on the 2020 election was made. And I don’t care who is running the platform, that type of transparency is sorely needed.

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This goes back to the lives lost to mRNA. Let’s see you do it.

Musk Says Exposé of Twitter’s ‘Free Speech Suppression’ Coming ‘Soon’ (ET)

Elon Musk said Monday that Twitter’s internal files on the company’s “free speech suppression” will be revealed “soon,” raising expectations that light will be shed on the circumstances around Twitter’s censorship of the New York Post’s explosive story that exposed information on a laptop allegedly belonging to Hunter Biden. “The Twitter Files on free speech suppression soon to be published on Twitter itself. The public deserves to know what really happened …” Musk said in a post late Monday. Critics have long held that Twitter has used vague standards to censor or suspend accounts and that the ones targeted are predominantly those expressing conservative views. Twitter has denied any bias in its actions, repeatedly insisting it is simply following its content moderation policies.

Weeks before the 2020 presidential election, the New York Post published an article that allegedly detailed meetings President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, had with a Ukrainian energy firm before then-Vice President Biden pressured Ukrainian government officials to fire a prosecutor probing the company. The story was seen by Biden’s political opponents as evidence of corruption and the news quickly spread across Twitter, prompting the social media firm to start removing links to the article and, for a period of time, suspending the New York Post’s Twitter account. Conservatives saw Twitter’s actions in this regard as evidence of the company’s pro-Biden, anti-Trump bias. Twitter said at the time that it was simply enforcing its rules on hacked materials, which prohibit distribution of information that is obtained through hacking.

Musk in April spoke out in opposition to Twitter’s decision to temporarily suspend New York Post’s Twitter account. “Suspending the Twitter account of a major news organization for publishing a truthful story was obviously incredibly inappropriate,” Musk said in April, responding to a post about the Hunter Biden laptop story. Musk, who took over Twitter in late October, has vowed to make the platform into a politically unbiased bastion of free speech. He said in an open letter following his acquisition of Twitter that he bought it because “it is important to the future of civilization to have a common digital town square, where a wide range of beliefs can be debated in a healthy manner, without resorting to violence.” “There is currently great danger that social media will splinter into far right wing and far left wing echo chambers that generate more hate and divide our society,” Musk added.

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“Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky emphasized that “there will be no Minsk-3 [agreement], which Russia would violate right after sealing it.”

Of course Zelensky knows full well Russia didn’t violate Minsk 1 and 2. Ukraine did. And US.

Kremlin Outlines Conditions For Ukraine Talks (RT)

Peace negotiations could start between Russia and Ukraine if Moscow sees genuine “political will” on the part of Kiev to engage in dialogue, Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov has said. Earlier this month, he noted that the Ukrainian leadership seemed reluctant to sit down for talks at present. When asked by Russian journalists on Tuesday whether there are any preconditions for any potential dialogue to begin between Moscow and Kiev, Peskov said: “It has to be political will, readiness to discuss those Russian demands which have been known for long.” Speaking via video-link during the G20 summit in Indonesia’s Bali in mid-November, Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky emphasized that “there will be no Minsk-3 [agreement], which Russia would violate right after sealing it.”

The Ukrainian head of state was referring to the Minsk-1 and Minsk-2 agreements brokered by Germany and France back in 2014 and 2015, respectively. The accords, among other things, envisaged special status for Donetsk and Lugansk regions within the Ukrainian state. Russian President Vladimir Putin cited Kiev’s failure to implement the agreements as one of the reasons for the start of Moscow’s military campaign against its neighbor in late February 2022. Commenting on Zelensky’s remarks at the G20 summit, Peskov argued at the time that they “absolutely confirm” Kiev’s unwillingness to engage in talks. Addressing leaders in Bali, the Ukrainian head of state proposed ten steps that, in his view, would lead to peace. Among the key points of his plan is the complete withdrawal of Russian forces from all Ukrainian territories and respect for the country’s borders drawn up in 1991, following the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Meanwhile, Moscow claims some of those regions, most notably Crimea, as its own, following referendums it had held there. It came shortly after The Washington Post reported in early November that the Biden administration had privately asked Zelensky to signal willingness to hold talks with Russia, if only just for show. Washington was reportedly concerned that Kiev’s irreconcilable position could see support from some of its Western allies dwindle amid what anonymous White House officials described as a growing “Ukraine fatigue.” The article claimed that Washington was not serious about getting Kiev to negotiate, and only sought to ensure that weapons and other aid kept flowing from as many nations as possible.

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Escalation tactics. Anytime it’s clear Russia is winning, they bring in heavier weaponry. Forcing Russia to follow suit. Same with dangling NATO membership in front of Zelensky. The war must go on.

NATO Says ‘Door is Open’ for Ukraine Membership….But (Celente)

Jens Stoltenberg, the secretary general of NATO, dangled the possibility that Ukraine may someday, in the future, join the Alliance and benefit from the protection of Article 5 that, when distilled, says: an attack on one, is an attack on all. He made the comment during a two-day summit in Bucharest where Ukraine’s electric grid and Russia’s relentless air campaign took center stage. The Russian strikes have left millions in the dark as temperatures hit 19 degrees in Kyiv. “NATO’s door is open,” he said, according to The New York Times. But he noted that the calvary is not coming during this conflict. “NATO will continue to stand for Ukraine as long as it takes. We will not back down.” In September, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, announced that Kyiv filed a new, expedited application to join NATO in light of Russian President Vladimir Putin annexing four occupied regions in the country.

Zelensky, correctly said in a statement that Finland and Sweden benefited from an accelerated accession into the Alliance. (But neither of those countries are members.) “De facto, we have already proven interoperability with the Alliance’s standards, they are real for Ukraine — real on the battlefield and in all aspects of our interaction,” Zelensky said. “Today, Ukraine is applying to make it de jure. Under a procedure consistent with our significance for the protection of our entire community. Under an accelerated procedure,” the statement continued. Jake Sullivan, Biden’s national security adviser, killed the idea and said, the issue should be taken up “at a different time.”

NATO’s refusal to accept Ukraine into the fold is understandable because it would assure the beginning of WWIII. But it has still been a sensitive subject in Kyiv. Last summer, Ihor Zhovkva, the deputy chief of staff for Zelensky, said in an interview that Kyiv was told by NATO that it is “not a member because we do not want you.” “NATO is telling us we are not giving you anything,” he said in an interview with a local news outlet in Kyiv, according to Bloomberg. Some could argue that Ukraine was the victim misleading public statements from the U.S. and NATO prior to the invasion. U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Stoltenberg said Moscow would be met with a“forceful” response if there was an invasion. Blinken went further and said the U.S. has a “sacred obligation” to defend its allies.

Under Article 10 of the 1949 Washington Treaty, NATO has the right to invite any willing European country into the fold. But Stoltenberg made it clear, before the invasion, that there is a distinction between a NATO partner and ally. Kyiv is a partner. NATO is compelled to only defend allies. NATO countries never embraced Ukraine as an ally because it meant certain war with Russia.

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“(see, it was all theater, everything – from day one – and politicians knew it as soon as they did the math)”

EU Fails To Agree On Russian Oil Price Cap As Full Ban Looms (ZH)

In its relentless pursuit of virtue-signaling hills that it is willing to die on within minutes, several months ago the EU had a brilliant idea: let’s implement a toothless oil price cap on Russian oil exports, one which actually has zero impact on deeply discounted Russian oil and thus doesn’t lead to any more European energy shocks, but because of the optics and the much “lower” permitted transaction price, it will make for great headlines and show the world just how powerful the EU is. Well, the plan almost worked… until Poland and the Baltics forgot to read the fine print, thought that Europe actually does mean business, and blew up the deal. Recall on Friday, negotiations on the Russian oil price cap were suspended – despite a willingness by most European nations to just cross the checkmark and move on – as Poland and the Baltic states objected to a proposed ceiling of $65.

There was some hope that this opposition was just for show, and that come Monday the Poles would relent after some “closed door” negotiations, Europe would slap a $65 price cap, Russia would continue to sell its oil to China and India, and – quietly – to Europe, and gradually renormalize a fractured oil market where India and China pay a 25% discount for oil while the rest of the world has to pay a premium as an offset. However, it was not meant to be, and on Monday European Union governments again failed to agree on a price cap on Russian seaborne crude oil, as Poland again insisted that the cap had to be set lower than proposed by the G7 to cut Moscow’s ability to finance its invasion of Ukraine, diplomats told Reuters. “There is no deal. The legal texts have now been agreed, but Poland still can’t agree to the price,” one diplomat said.

No new date for talks has been set yet, diplomats said, even though a far worse outcome may await Europe in just one week: as a reminder, the price cap mechanism is to enter into force on Dec. 5. And if there is no agreement on the G7 price cap idea by next Monday, the EU would implement harsher measures agreed at the end of May – a ban on all Russian crude oil imports from Dec. 5 and on petroleum products from Feb. 5, Polish diplomats said. That would be a truly catastrophic scenario, and one which could promptly send the price of oil into the stratosphere as JPMorgan explained not too long ago. To be sure, it’s not too late for Poland to fall in line: Hungary and two other landlocked central European states secured exemptions from that ban for the pipeline imports they rely on.

Meanwhile, even the G-7 group of nations has proposed a softer version of the EU ban to keep oil supply to the global economy steady, because Russia supplies 10% of the world’s oil (see, it was all theater, everything – from day one – and politicians knew it as soon as they did the math). It proposed that the EU and other global customers keep buying Russian crude, but only if its price is at or below a G7 agreed level. That would cut the Kremlin’s revenues. The G7 has proposed a cap of $65-70 per barrel, but Poland and some others argue this will not hurt Moscow because Russian crude is already trading below that range at $63.50, and after today’s oil price rollercoaster, the “Russian” price briefly dipped below $60. With Russian production costs estimated at around $20, Moscow has a very large profit from its oil exports. Poland, Lithuania and Estonia have been pushing for a price cap of $30 per barrel.

And yet, despite consensus that Polish opposition would be overturned, the country’s resolve has only hardened: “The Poles are completely uncompromising on the price, without suggesting an acceptable alternative,” the EU diplomat said. “Clearly there is growing annoyance with the Polish position.” Which is hilarious because only Poland is adhering to the principle of what the price cap was supposed to achieve – namely choke off Russian oil profits; and yet for all the pompous rhetoric by G-7 nations, everyone is happy to keep the spectacle going knowing full well that this is just one giant virtue-signaling scheme. Everyone, except Poland that is… and as a result the “annoyance” is not with Putin but with the “Polish position” which is keeping fat European technocrats away from their well-deserved 3-star meals for a fake job well done.

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“..the Biden administration inspected only 10% of 22,000 weapons the U.S. has provided to Ukraine..”

Rand Paul Calls Out Complete Lack Of Oversight On Ukraine Aid (SN)

Senator Rand Paul reacted Monday to news that the Biden administration is struggling to account for some $20 billion in aid that was sent to Ukraine, noting that both political parties ignored his call for an inspector general to overlook it. A report from Fox News, linked in a tweet by Paul, notes that according to the Washington Post, the Biden administration inspected only 10% of 22,000 weapons the U.S. has provided to Ukraine between February and November. It also outlines how Republicans could push for audits to determine where all the military aid is going and how much of it is ending up in the wrong hand.


“Didn’t someone try to legislatively mandate a special inspector general to scrutinize Ukrainian spending?” Paul urged, adding “Oh, that’s right, it was my amendment and most Democrats AND Republicans opposed any semblance of oversight.” Just a fortnight ago, following the throughly debunked “Russian missile attack” on a Polish border town, which turned out to be a Ukrainian missile that had stayed off course, Biden asked Congress to provide another $37.7 billion in emergency aid to Ukraine. The United States has already pledged more than 52 billion euros in military, financial and humanitarian aid to Ukraine since the war began in February 2022 and October 3, way more than any other nation or nations combined.

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“..and also stranded the media in an endless loop of ass-covering they are still locked into..”

The Four Fuckeries (Jim Kunstler)

“We want to save the planet, and the life upon it, but we’re not willing to pay the price and bear the consequences. So we make up a narrative that feels good and run with it.” — Raul Ilargi Meijer.” I doubt there is another era in the history of Western Civ when the forces in-motion acting on society were so mystifying to those acted upon. And isn’t it especially galling that this is so in an age after rational scientific practice had decoded so many of nature’s secrets? Did that project somehow fail in the end? Has the Enlightenment been defeated? How have we become trapped like frogs being boiled haplessly in our own pond-water? I have reduced these forces to four obvious streams of the sheerest seemingly evil fuckery, which is to say nefariously managed events meant to harm us. They are surely all related in some way. Let’s try to de-mystify them to understand what we’re up against.

First: Covid-19. How is it that we don’t know for sure how this organism came into the world, or understand what ensued after it did? Answer: the people who caused it to happen in the Wuhan lab have been busy covering their asses for three years, and successfully so. Yet we know exactly what Anthony Fauci, Francis Collins, Peter Daszak, Ralph Baric and others did. The paper trail in correspondence and patents alone is clear. We just can’t seem to do anything about it. We don’t know why they did it yet, too, but there are plausible guesses. Maybe Dr. Fauci wanted to cap his long, checkered career with a final heroic triumph: the introduction of world-saving mRNA vaccines — incidentally, a great financial boon to himself and the pharma industry he secretly served. Like everything else Fauci worked on for forty years, this experiment ended in disaster: a Frankenstein disease that persists in the population and vaccines that maim and kill people. How did Fauci and company get away with it? Here’s how:

Two: Government’s war on its own citizens. I’d date this for the sake of simplicity to the DOJ’s and FBI’s campaign to defenestrate Donald Trump starting in 2016 for the crime of winning an election. What began as the Russia collusion prank morphed into RussiaGate, another ass-covering extravaganza in which public officialdom gave itself blanket permission to lie about everything it was doing. The likes of James Comey, Andrew McCabe and Barack Obama’s girl squad in the White House — to name just a few of many participants — also managed to hook in the mainstream news media under the supposition that they were the good guys fighting a disgusting, pussy-grabbing supervillain, which disposed the news media to go along with all the FBI and DOJ lies, and also stranded the media in an endless loop of ass-covering they are still locked into.

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“..it was simply impossible to fail no matter how inept and incompetent the entire invasion was..”

Will The US Try To Pull Off A “Grenada” In Serbia? (Saker)

Remember the 1983 US invasion of Grenada aka “Operation Urgent Fury”? It all began on October 23, 1983 when two truck bombs blew up the buildings housing the US and French “Multinational Force in Lebanon”. This attack resulted in 307 people killed including 241 U.S. and 58 French military personnel. Following the bombings, US diplomats engaged in their usual frantic flag-waving and promises to never ever give in to terrorism. The biggest problem for the US was that it had no way to retaliate in a way which would satisfy the flag-waver’s desire for blood. Just blowing up random buildings in Lebanon made very little impact, as for the promises to stay for as long as needed, it was obvious PR – it was clear to everybody that the time to pack and leave had come.

Of course, this was very humiliating for the wannabe “indispensable nation” cum “city upon a Hill”,,, So Reagan, with his undeniable genius for PR and optics, ordered the invasion of Grenada just two days after the bombings in Beirut. Why Grenada? Well, for one thing it was barely defended (mostly by Cuban engineers and locals with small arms) and truly tiny (so tiny, in fact, that the overwhelming majority of US Americans had no idea where it was or why there was suddenly an urgent need to invade. Second, it was very close to the USA, so everybody could get a slice of the cake, including the 1st and 2nd battalions of the US Army’s 75th Ranger Regiment, the 82nd Airborne and the Army’s rapid deployment force, U.S. Marines, Army Delta Force, Navy SEALs, and ancillary forces totaling 7,600 troops.

In terms of hardware, the US brought in 7,300 troops, 4 tanks, 1 LHA (USS Saipan LHA-2), 1 aircraft carrier, 3 destroyers, 2 frigates, 1 ammunition ship and even 27 F-14A Tomcats. All that against a few hundred construction workers armed only with small arms! I won’t go into all the details here, but let’s just say that this invasion was one of the worst and most poorly executed operation in the history of warfare: a truly HUGE US force was brought in to strike at a basically defenseless tiny island nation with the sole purpose of changing the optics of the disaster in Lebanon.

But, no to worry, the Pentagon handed our more medals than the number of participants, while some US special forces who wanted to press charges against helicopter pilots for cowardice (who abandoned the SOF on a runway because of small arms fire) were “counseled” against the idea. Bottom line is this: after the epic disaster in Beirut, the US wanted a quick and easy war to restore the “prestige” of the US armed forces, only to end up with yet another epic disaster, but at least in the case of Grenada, it was simply impossible to fail no matter how inept and incompetent the entire invasion was.

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Iran=BRI, SCO, INSTC, BRICS+.

US Paralyzed By Islamic Republic Of Iran’s Strategic Swing (Escobar)

Iran’s parliament has just approved the accession of the Islamic Republic to the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), previously enshrined at the Samarkand summit last September, marking the culmination of a process that lasted no less than 15 years. Iran has already applied to become a member of the expanding BRICS+, which before 2025 will be inevitably configured as the alternative Global South G20 that really matters. Iran is already part of the Quad that really matters – alongside BRICS members Russia, China and India. Iran is deepening its strategic partnership with both China and Russia and increasing bilateral cooperation with India.

Iran is a key Chinese partner in the New Silk Roads, or Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). It is set to clinch a free trade agreement with the Eurasia Economic Union (EAEU) and is a key node of the International North-South Transportation Corridor (INSTC), alongside Russia and India. All of the above configures the lightning-fast emergence of the Islamic Republic of Iran as a West Asia and Eurasia big power, with vast reach across the Global South. That has left the whole set of imperial “policies” towards Tehran lying in the dust. So it’s no wonder that previously accumulated strands of Iranophobia – fed by the Empire over four decades — have recently metastasized into yet another color revolution offensive, fully supported and disseminated by Anglo-American media.

The playbook is always the same. Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei actually came up with a concise definition. The problem is not bands of oblivious rioters and/or mercenaries: “the main confrontation”, he said, is with “global hegemony.” Ayatollah Khamenei was somewhat echoed by American intellectual and author Noam Chomsky, who has remarked how an array of US sanctions over four decades have severely harmed the Iranian economy and “caused enormous suffering.”

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Apple is not looking good lately.

Apple Turns Off China Protest Communication Tool (SN)

As it mulls kicking Elon Musk’s Twitter off the app store, it has now been revealed that Apple restricted the use of AirDrop in China, a move that harmed the organizational efforts of demonstrators protesting against the CCP’s lockdowns. Over the past week, multiple major cities across China have seen massive protests against lockdowns, with the normally compliant Chinese exploding into rage in response to their government’s ‘zero COVID’ policy. Much of the unrest blew up in response to an incident in Xinjiang’s capital Urumqi, where at least 10 people, some say up to 40, were killed during an apartment fire because lockdown rules stopped residents from fleeing the burning building.

Most of the city’s residents have been prevented from leaving their homes for over 100 days as a result of the draconian rules, which are still in place nearly three years after the pandemic began. With Beijing now trying to contain what some are calling the most serious mass uprising since Tiananmen Square, Apple is apparently helping them to crush dissent. Earlier this month, Apple restricted the use of AirDrop in China, which protesters had been using to evade censorship. AirDrop allows local connections between devices, meaning it cannot be monitored or censored by local authorities. However, Apple launched an update to the app in China that restricted usage to just 10 minutes, making it harder for protesters to communicate with other activists, as well as send messages nearby bystanders and tourists.

AirDrop was also being used by protesters in Hong Kong, who were brutally suppressed by the CCP during months of unrest in 2019. The smartphone company chose to roll out the new “feature” in China only right as the country experienced its biggest demonstrations in decades, which some would suggest is more than just a coincidence. “Apple has helped Beijing to suppress public dissent multiple times, mostly by complying with its requests to remove apps used by protestors for information and communication,” reports Reclaim the Net. “Apple also helps the Chinese Communist Party prevent users from remaining private by banning VPNs in the region.”

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“..Bankman-Fried, as of Nov. 10, either believed that Alameda owned a stake in Musk’s Twitter, or that he was uncertain, and therefore misleading potential investors.”

SBF Doesn’t Know What Happened To His Twitter Stake (Axios)

Sam Bankman-Fried tells Axios that he always intended to roll over at least a portion of his former firm’s $100 million Twitter stake into the new, privately held entity led by Elon Musk. But the former FTX CEO said in an interview on Monday night that he’s not sure that ever happened with the Alameda Research controlled stake. It’s the first time Bankman-Fried has addressed the question around his Twitter stake since Musk said last week that neither SBF nor FTX ever held a position in the privatized Twitter, a statement that contradicted a Semafor news report. Alameda Research, the entity that Bankman-Fried said owned the Twitter stake, is the trading firm that he controlled and is the entity at the center of FTX’s implosion.

A text message seen by Axios that Bankman-Fried sent to Musk said the Twitter stake Alameda owned was worth around $100 million. “I believe that that it was intended for Alameda to rollover at least $20 million or more,” Bankman-Fried told Axios. “I don’t know for sure whether that ultimately happened.” Bankman-Fried noted that at least some of the Twitter stake may have been sold prior to Twitter going private, but he could not confirm. Bankman-Fried, through his advisers, had offered to help Musk buy out Twitter in the spring with potentially billions of dollars. But he later backed out of his offer after the two spoke by phone, Axios previously reported.

Bankman-Fried said at the time that he was interested in rolling the stake into the privatized company, with Musk acknowledging that Bankman-Fried was “welcome to roll.” The Twitter stake was listed on a Nov. 10 balance sheet shown to prospective FTX investors before the company went bankrupt, according to the Financial Times. The balance sheet, upon which Semafor also relied for its reporting, listed $43.3 million of Twitter stock as an illiquid deliverable — or sellable — asset. That suggests that Bankman-Fried, as of Nov. 10, either believed that Alameda owned a stake in Musk’s Twitter, or that he was uncertain, and therefore misleading potential investors.

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Big house cats. Sound on.

 

 

Backwards dog

 

 

Blob top jellyfish

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Nov 242022
 


Salvador Dali Bay of Cadaques 1925

 

The Fear of Fear Itself: The Gripping Truth Out of Ukraine (Butler)
It Was Never About Ukraine (Antiwar)
Black Holes And Digestive Systems, Or Why Hegemon Is Doomed (FMAN)
New York Times Confirms SBF To Speak Alongside Zelensky, Yellen (ZH)
EU Parliament Brands Russia ‘State Sponsor Of Terrorism’ (RT)
Russia Is Not ‘State Sponsor Of Terrorism’ – US Ambassador (RT)
Huge Swathes Of Ukraine Without Power & Water (ZH)
Ukraine – Lights Out, No Water And Soon No Heat (MoA)
Germany Rejects Boris Johnson Claims It Said Ukraine Should Fold To Russia (G.)
EU Has ‘No Right’ To Get Tired Of Ukraine Conflict – Kiev (RT)
Ukraine Halts Russian Oil Transit To EU – Transneft (RT)
EU Claims To Have Fully Substituted Russian Gas (RT)
China Secretly Hoarding Gold To Ditch Dollar – Media
NATO Contacts Claim Is Media ‘Invention’ – Moscow (RT)
Anti-Twitter Advertisers Have Been Under-Performing The Market For Months (ZH)
Elon Musk: Coalition of Political Groups Behind Lack of Moderation Council (ET)

 

 

 

 


Jim Garrison in his book, “On the Trail of the Assassins.”
“I knew by now that when a group of individuals gravitated toward one another for no apparent reason…inexplicably headed in the same direction as if drawn by a magnetic field..as often as not the shadowy outlines of a covert intelligence operation were somehow becoming visible”

 

 

Elon AOC

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Since Putin’s gas hike was not enough to stir Americans into a blood ritual for total war, the liberal world order is throwing grocery prices into the mix.”

The Fear of Fear Itself: The Gripping Truth Out of Ukraine (Butler)

Now we are asked to be afraid of Vladimir Putin weaponizing gas! We must act in defense of the Russian’s weaponizing food! And Vladimir Putin personally killed J.F.K. with a BB-Gun from the Texas book depository in Dallas. Did Russia’s leadership wake up one morning in 2014 and decide a NATO regime was needed in next-door Ukraine? Well, no. Were the Russians shelling people with Polish DNA in Kyiv for eight years? Certainly not. The EU, NATO, and the New York Times would have informed us of that. So why would Russia act the way she has recently? I see no one out there gazing with practical eyes on this situation. Oh, commodities and controlling them! Money! Tons and tons of money! That has to be it.

Some weeks back, Vladimir Putin’s government decided to allow the free passage of grain ships through the Black Sea out of southwestern Ukraine. The “food” was ostensibly headed to the starving people of Africa and Asia that Washington, London, and Brussels were berserk over. Even the United Nations has held that starving people worldwide need to blame Russia. I was reading a Voice of America report on recent UN meetings about the Ukraine/Black Sea shipments, and it reads like intel for Wall Street commodities brokers. And there’s the point. Food security worldwide is now the red-hot poker western elites are jabbing Russia with now. Since Putin’s gas hike was not enough to stir Americans into a blood ritual for total war, the liberal world order is throwing grocery prices into the mix.

For those in the dark or dizzied by all these events, and I am often with you, the accessible version is to simply call this World War III. Yes, we are already in it. But think about the sequence of recent events and their impact for proper clarity. First, Nord Stream was blown up. The next day a pipeline from Norway to Poland carrying much more expensive natural gas went into operation. A few days after this, the Poles demanded trillions in reparations from the Germans for WW2 grievances settled decades ago. The essentials that power economies and people are being weaponized, but the perpetrators hide in plain sight behind the media they own.

Retired U.S. Colonel Douglas MacGregor gave the best appraisal of the situation in a talk with Aaron Maté and Katie Halper. MacGregor, dubbed “America’s Greatest Warfighter,” is a war hero and former strategy advisor during the Trump administration. He says, in no uncertain terms, that Washington and London’s leaders are on a mission to destroy Germany and the German-Russian cooperative potential. I believe he is right on all counts, but he leaves off how the western elites (banksters) are profiteering from it all. This is a multiple-pronged strategy, not some haphazard knee-jerking.

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“Russia refused to play by the rules..”

It Was Never About Ukraine (Antiwar)

In his March 21 press briefing, State Department spokesman Ned Price told the gathered reporters that “President Zelenskyy has also made it very clear that he is open to a diplomatic solution that does not compromise the core principles at the heart of the Kremlin’s war against Ukraine.” A reporter asked Price, “What are you saying about your support for a negotiated settlement à la Zelenskyy, but on whose principles?” In what still may be the most remarkable statement of the war, Price responded, “this is a war that is in many ways bigger than Russia, it’s bigger than Ukraine.” Price, who a month earlier had discouraged talks between Russia and Ukraine, rejected Kiev negotiating an end to the war with Ukraine’s interests addressed because US core interests had not been addressed. The war was not about Ukraine’s interests: it was bigger than Ukraine.

A month later, in April, when a settlement seemed to be within reach at the Istanbul talks, the US and UK again pressured Ukraine not to pursue their own goals and sign an agreement that could have ended the war. They again pressured Ukraine to continue to fight in pursuit of the larger goals of the US and its allies. Then British prime minister Boris Johnson scolded Zelensky that Putin “should be pressured, not negotiated with.” He added that, even if Ukraine was ready to sign some agreements with Russia, the West was not.” Once again, the war was not about Ukraine’s interests: it was bigger than Ukraine. At every opportunity, Biden and his highest ranking officials have insisted “that it’s up to Ukraine to decide how and when or if they negotiate with the Russians” and that the US won’t dictate terms: “nothing about Ukraine without Ukraine.”

But that has never been true. The US wouldn’t allow Ukraine to negotiate on their terms when they wanted to. The US stopped Ukraine from negotiating in March and April when they wanted to; they pushed them to negotiate in November when they did not want to. The war in Ukraine has always been about larger US goals. It has always been about the American ambition to maintain a unipolar world in which they were the sole polar power at the center and top of the world. Ukraine became the focus of that ambition in 2014 when Russia for the first time stood up to American hegemony.

Alexander Lukin, who is Head of Department of International Relations at National Research University Higher School of Economics in Moscow and an authority on Russian politics and international relations, says that since the end of the Cold War Russia had been considered a subordinate partner of the West. In all disagreements between Russia and the US up to then, Russia had compromised, and the disagreements were resolved rather quickly. But when, in 2014, the US set up and supported a coup in Ukraine that was intended to pull Ukraine closer into the NATO and European security sphere Russia responded by annexing Crimea, Russia broke out of its post Cold War policy of compliance and pushed back against US hegemony. The 2014 “crisis in Ukraine and Russia’s reaction to it have fundamentally changed this consensus,” Lukin says. “Russia refused to play by the rules.”

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“This black hole is now swallowing the entire Energy System of the country as you read this, and attracting dangerously some of the closest objects to its orbit such as Poland, the Baltic Bonsai Countries and the neighboring EU..”

Black Holes And Digestive Systems, Or Why Hegemon Is Doomed (FMAN)

Ukraine is like a black hole. It swallows everything you throw at it… Billions of dollars in assistance, millions of tons of military material, and (I hope not) hundreds of thousands of lives of Khokhol and its Nazi buddies, especially if they allow the Clown-Zirkus to remain in power for much longer without a check. This black hole is now swallowing the entire Energy System of the country as you read this, and attracting dangerously some of the closest objects to its orbit such as Poland, the Baltic Bonsai Countries and the neighboring EU, all of them being steered directly to the void, in suicide mode, by their (brain disabled, dim-witted, deranged and psychopathic) ruling elites.

But what are really black Holes? You can ask yourself. From an astronomical standpoint, it is simply a star (of some mass) that, at the end of its life, collapses into a point (the singularity) due to the gravity produced by its own mass. This gravity is so intense that not even light can escape from it, hence the name “Black Hole”. They can achieve this state through a variety of processes, but the end result is always the same: something from which you cannot escape if you fall within its event horizon. And that is only defined by its mass, electric charge, and momentum. Whatever falls behind its event horizon is forever out of reach of observers on the outside.

There might be another (more convenient) meaning for this particular Ukrainian black hole. I read in my university days an anthology edited by Jerry Pournelle, where he said that Russians never use the term, because it has some eschatological connotations… some kind of biology-related obscenity. I don’t know if it is true, but I have to say that comparing Banderastan to the black hole at the end of the digestive system of some kind of mythological beast (let’s call it Hegemon) looks like much more pertinent in this case. This end has a particularly long and interesting list of possible denominations.

The beast, has an insatiable hunger, if allowed it would devour us all. The crazy psychopaths ruling elites in the West are feeding it as quickly as possible and as much as they can (wasting in the process the wealth, health and resources of those they govern) because they are also part of the parasites sucking the life and energy off the beast. The more they throw into the mouth, the more they suck out of it. The system works perfectly for them and, what is left, once processed and liberated of most of the real substance and value, is excreted through the blackhole at the end.

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Max Keiser:
• I guess the good news about the FTX racketeering scandal is that it looks like it’ll take down several high profile media outlets, the entire ‘crypto’ farce and many scammy VC’s and banks.
• [NYTimes] @dealbook just indicted itself as being part of a criminal enterprise and participating in the FTX racketeering scandal.

New York Times Confirms SBF To Speak Alongside Zelensky, Yellen (ZH)

As we discussed last night, Sam Bankman-Fried has now demonstrated that he is both a pathological liar and a sociopath, the kind who in “explaining” to his employees how he stole billions (over $4 billion according to new FTX CEO John J. Ray) from the now bankrupt FTX, an act which left it insolvent and without liquidity, called it “loans” which were “generally” not used for “large amounts of personal consumption” (just “small amounts” used for such trivial items as $40 million penthouses and private jets). And the only reason we don’t officially call him a criminal just yet, is because he has not yet confirmed he used clienOutrage After New York Times Confirms SBF To Speak Alongside Zelenskyy, Yellent money from his exchange to fund his personal hedge fund, an act which would cost any other individual decades in jail… but not prominent democrats like SBF or Jon Corzine, of course.

Plus it’s the US legal system’s job to do that, not ours. Although we are growing increasingly skeptical this prominent Democratic donor will ever see the inside of a courtroom. It’s not just us: with much of the entire world demanding to know how this corpulent 30-year-old still has not been thrown in prison, or at least charged with a variety of crimes, the NYT just confirmed to the entire world what a farce the one-time paper of record has become, and how it is willing to whore itself out for clicks – not to mention prominent Democrat donors – because moments after SBF tweeted that he will be speaking with Andrew Ross-Sorkin moderated NYT “summit” on Nov 30… … Sorkin quickly confirmed as much.

And so, instead of being under arrest, SBF will instead be treated like a luminary alongside other such other Democrat icons as Zelenskyy (who according to some may have been intimately familiar with FTX fund flows in the past year) and of course the woman who along with Ben Bernanke and Jerome Powell, made it all possible by blowing the biggest asset bubble of all time: Janet Yellen. And while we are certain that the NYT – which we assume is done writing puff pieces on behalf of SBF after it became a laughing stock last week – would be quick to mercilessly cancel and expel from its “prestigious” conference anyone who had misgendered some post-op transsexual, it is willing to give this thieving pathological liar and sociopath a forum in which to profess his innocence to the entire world, and by association with other Democrat “celebrities”…

 

 

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Europe is not where the brains are.

EU Parliament Brands Russia ‘State Sponsor Of Terrorism’ (RT)

The European Parliament adopted a non-binding resolution designating Russia as a “state sponsor of terrorism” on Wednesday. In a strongly worded but largely symbolic document, MEPs also called on the European Union to further reduce diplomatic ties with Moscow and quickly adopt a ninth package of anti-Russia sanctions. Diplomatic relations with Russia should be cut “to the absolute minimum necessary” and Russian “state-affiliated institutions,” such as Russian cultural centers and diaspora organizations, should be closed and banned, the MEPs said. As the European Union cannot officially designate states as sponsors of terrorism at present, the parliament called on bloc members to put in place the necessary legal framework and to consider adding Moscow to the relevant list.

It also urged EU members to initiate “a comprehensive international isolation” of Russia and “to swiftly complete its work on a ninth sanctions package.” The resolution, which was supported by a vast majority of parliamentarians, accused Russia of conducting “deliberate attacks and atrocities” against Ukrainian civilians, of destroying critical infrastructure in the country, and of violating human rights. Therefore, it said, the European Parliament “recognizes Russia as a state sponsor of terrorism and as a state which uses means of terrorism.” Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky welcomed the resolution, tweeting that “Russia must be isolated at all levels and held accountable.”

In recent weeks, similar largely symbolic declarations were adopted by NATO’s Parliamentary Assembly and the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. While Kiev has repeatedly urged the West to declare Russia a “state sponsor of terrorism,” only a few countries – including Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and the Czech Republic – have heeded the call, and their actions have been limited to symbolic gestures. Those with the power to enforce anti-terrorism sanctions against other states, specifically the US, have so far refused to take such a step. In August, the Russian Foreign Ministry warned Washington that designating Russia as a state sponsor of terrorism would become “a point of no return” in bilateral relations.

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“..Van Schaack said the US is “very interested in what the Europeans are doing,” adding that such a resolution “carries great weight.”

Russia Is Not ‘State Sponsor Of Terrorism’ – US Ambassador (RT)

The US cannot designate Russia as a “state sponsor of terrorism” since it simply does not fit the relevant criteria, the US Ambassador-at-Large for Global Criminal Justice Beth Van Schaack told a briefing on Tuesday, while commenting on a similar initiative by European lawmakers. The EU parliament adopted a resolution calling Russia a “state sponsor of terrorism” on Wednesday. “The designation of a state sponsor of terror in terms of the way US law defines it is not a good match for Russia here,” Van Schaack told journalists. Washington is currently “exploring other potential designations” that would allow it to potentially imposed further sanctions on Moscow, the ambassador added. According to Van Schaack, such a label would not be necessary since the US is already “utilizing our sanctions to an incredible degree.”

The non-binding resolution by the EU parliament was supported by 494 MEPs while 58 voted against it and 44 abstained. The MEPs particularly stated that Russia’s attacks on “the civilian population of Ukraine [and] the destruction of civilian infrastructure” amount to “war crimes” and “acts of terror.” The document also called on Brussels to develop a relevant legal framework allowing it to officially designate entire nations as sponsors of terrorism, adding that it is currently not possible. The resolution also demanded what it called the “comprehensive international isolation” of Russia, including the further reduction of diplomatic relations and the swift adoption of a new round of sanctions. “Contacts with its official representatives at all levels (should) be kept to the absolute minimum necessary,” the document said.

On Tuesday, Van Schaack said the US is “very interested in what the Europeans are doing,” adding that such a resolution “carries great weight.” The EU parliament’s document adopted so far is largely symbolic as it does not impose any legal commitments on Brussels. On Wednesday, the Russian Foreign Ministry blasted any such designations as a way for the West to legitimize their “unilateral coercive measures” against their perceived adversaries. “A number of nations representing the ‘collective West’ use such labels as a ‘terrorist state,’ ‘terrorist regime’ or a ‘state sponsor of terrorism’ to designate those nations [they consider] ‘unwelcome’ and not fitting their warped perceptions of democracy,” Ivan Nechayev, the deputy head of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s Information and Press Department, told the Russian media.

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“Everything is fine with the station. There is nowhere to generate electricity.”

Huge Swathes Of Ukraine Without Power & Water (ZH)

Ukraine’s energy operator Energoatom has announced Wednesday emergency power shutdowns in effect across all regions of the country amid a new large wave of Russian airstrikes. Sirens have been sounding throughout the day across the country. President Volodymyr Zelensky in follow-up estimated that 10 million Ukrainians now lack access to electricity due to the attacks. “There are emergency shutdowns in addition to planned, stabilization ones,” he explained. “The elimination of the consequences of another missile attack against Ukraine continues all day.” Casualties have been reported in the eastern cities of Dnipro and Zaporizhzhia, and at least one person has been reported killed in Kiev.

Speaking of the renewed attacks on the capital, Mykhailo Podolyak, head of the Office of the Ukrainian President’s office said, “A new massive attack on infrastructure facilities is underway.” He described, citing recent anti-air defense systems acquired from Western countries, “While someone is waiting for World Cup results and the number of goals scored, Ukrainians are waiting for another score – number of intercepted Russian missiles. A new massive attack on infrastructure facilities is underway. In NASAMS, IRIS-T and Air Defense Forces we trust.” Kiev’s mayor, Vitali Klitschko, issued an emergency message on social media warning that ongoing Russian strikes are “Hitting one of the capital’s infrastructure facilities. Stay in shelters! The air alert continues.”

Also alarming is that the mayor in a follow-up message said that water services have been suspended in Kiev after the major strikes. While it’s not the first time that some war-hit parts of Ukraine have been left without electricity and water, the country is now in an extremely dire and urgent phase, having already seen an estimated half its national power infrastructure degraded or destroyed. Temperatures are quickly dropping, with the capital having witnessed its first snow earlier this month. Nuclear power generation is also being severely impacted: Several units were shut down at the Pivdennoukrainsk nuclear power plant in southern Ukraine due to a loss of power during Russian air raids across Ukraine, Ukraine’s nuclear energy firm Energoatom said. An Energoatom spokesperson said, “Everything is fine with the station. There is nowhere to generate electricity.”

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“To stop these attacks requires a political solution. Ukraine will have to give up and find some agreement with Russia.”

Ukraine – Lights Out, No Water And Soon No Heat (MoA)

Earlier today the Russian military shut down the Ukrainian electricity network. Previous attacks had limited the distribution capacity to some 50% of demand. Controlled blackouts over several hours per day allowed to give some electricity for a few hours to most parts of the country. The attack today created a much larger problem. Not only were distribution networks attacked but also so the elements that connect Ukraine’s electricity production facilities to the distribution network. All four nuclear power stations of Ukraine with their 15 reactors are now in shutdown mode. Kiev along with most other cities of Ukraine no longer has electricity. Moldavia is likewise effected as it received some 20% of its electricity from Ukraine. When the Ukrainian network shut down the only local thermal power plant shut down too. It is likely that it can be switched on again but that can be a complicate process.

Limited electricity imports from the European system into Ukraine may still be possible but that electricity would only be available in Ukraine’s western cities. Before today’s attack the Washington Post reported of the difficulties in repairing the network. As we ad explained before the Russian attacks are hitting the transformers that connect the national 330 kilovolt backbone network. These are hard to replace: “As the scope of damage to Ukraine’s energy systems has come into focus in recent days, Ukrainian and Western officials have begun sounding the alarm but are also realizing they have limited recourse. Ukraine’s Soviet-era power system cannot be fixed quickly or easily. In some of the worst-hit cities, there is little officials can do other than to urge residents to flee — raising the risk of economic collapse in Ukraine and a spillover refugee crisis in neighboring European countries….

Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said that about half of the country’s energy infrastructure was “out of order” following the bombardment…. For weeks, Russian missiles have targeted key components of Ukraine’s electrical transmission system, knocking out vital transformers without which it is impossible to supply power to households, businesses, government offices, schools, hospitals and other critical facilities. During a briefing for reporters on Tuesday, Volodymyr Kudrytskyi, the head of Ukrenergo, the state-run power grid operator, called the damage to the power system “colossal.”… Russians, he said, were mainly targeting substations, nodes on the electrical grid where the current is redirected from power stations. The main components of these substations are autotransformers — “high-tech and high-cost equipment” that is difficult to replace….

A list of “urgent needs” from DTEK, the country’s largest private energy company, circulating in Washington, lists dozens of transformers along with circuit breakers, bushings and transformer oil…. But it is the autotransformers — the “heart” of the substations, in the words of Kudrytskyi — that are at the top of the Ukrainians’ list of needs and the key to keeping the country’s electrical grid functioning. The Ukrainians have tried to buy up every autotransformer they can find, going as far as South Korea to purchase them, but they still need to place orders for more to be built.“We try to collect everything around the world that they have now, and order more,” said Olena Zerkal, an adviser to Ukraine’s Energy Ministry. Any attempts to repair the network are useless as long as Russia continues to attack it. To stop these attacks requires a political solution. Ukraine will have to give up and find some agreement with Russia.

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Ha ha ha. I bet Boris spoke the truth for once.

Germany Rejects Boris Johnson Claims It Said Ukraine Should Fold To Russia (G.)

Germany has angrily dismissed claims by Boris Johnson that in the run-up to the Russian invasion of Ukraine it said it would be better for Ukraine to fold than to become embroiled in a long war. Johnson, interviewed by CNN, also claimed that the French president, Emmanuel Macron, was in denial about the threat of invasion, and that Italy, led at the time by Mario Draghi, said it could not help because it was so dependent on Russian hydrocarbons.A spokesperson for the German chancellor, Olaf Scholz, rejected the claims with a diplomatically phrased dig at Johnson. “We know that the very entertaining former prime minister always has a unique relationship with the truth; this case is no exception,” the official said. Miguel Berger, the German ambassador to the UK, backed the dismissal of Johnson’s account.

Johnson’s claims appear similar to comments from Andriy Melnyk, the former Ukrainian ambassador to Germany, who has said German politicians told him before the invasion that they expected Ukraine to be defeated within three days and so it was pointless to provide any help. Melnyk claimed on Twitter in March: “On 14 February we were warning German politicians: ‘Kyiv may be bombed in the coming days! We urgently need 12 thousand anti-tank rockets from Germany.’ In response: just mockery. So sad. So furious.” He later claimed that the German finance minister, Christian Lindner, was against supplying weapons to Ukraine or cutting Russia off from the international Swift banking payments. Melnyk told Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung that Lindner had told him with a smile that he thought Ukraine would collapse within a few hours and that he was ready to talk to a puppet regime that would be installed by Russia.

The German finance ministry denied the accusation. Macron was broadcast before the invasion making desperate pleas to Vladimir Putin to hold talks with Joe Biden. Johnson stressed in his interview that EU nations had later rallied behind Ukraine and were providing steadfast support, but he said that was not universally the case in the period before the invasion in February. “This thing was a huge shock … we could see the Russian battalion tactical groups amassing, but different countries had very different perspectives,” Johnson told CNN’s Richard Quest in Portugal. “The German view was at one stage that if it were going to happen, which would be a disaster, then it would be better for the whole thing to be over quickly and for Ukraine to fold,” he claimed, citing “all sorts of sound economic reasons” for that approach.

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This should stop EU support right there and then, of course. First give us your billions, then we’ll read you your rights. And cut off your energy.

EU Has ‘No Right’ To Get Tired Of Ukraine Conflict – Kiev (RT)

The European Union must cast aside all doubts about new anti-Russia sanctions and double down on slapping Moscow with new restrictions that would curb its missile industry, Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba said on Tuesday. Speaking at a regular briefing, Kuleba urged the EU to speed up the work on its ninth sanctions package, which he described as long overdue. “We are only hearing about an attempt to start serious work on its preparation. Such a situation is totally unacceptable,” the minister said. In the same vein, he called on his EU colleagues “to put aside any doubts or, as it is fashionable to say, ‘fatigue,’ and to start to quickly complete the ninth sanctions package.” “If the Ukrainians are not tired, then the rest of Europe, all the more, has neither the moral nor the political right to get tired,” Kuleba stressed.

He called on the EU to focus on sanctions impacting Russia’s capability to produce missiles, which are used by Moscow to conduct strikes on Ukraine’s critical infrastructure. Russia has been targeting Ukrainian energy facilities, including power stations, since October 10, after accusing Kiev of attacking Russian structures, including the strategic Crimean Bridge. Due to these strikes, Ukraine has been experiencing rolling blackouts, with authorities there saying that these attacks have knocked out about 40% of the nation’s energy infrastructure. On Tuesday, Politico reported that the EU has not officially started working yet on the ninth sanctions package against Russia. However, according to two of the outlet’s sources, the new measures may potentially focus on Russian individuals that can be linked to the Ukraine conflict.

The previous sanctions package was adopted by the EU in early October and sought to deprive Moscow of €7 billion ($7.2 billion) in revenues from the import of products which support the Russian economy, including steel products, various machinery, textiles and non-gold jewelry. Following the start of Russia’s military operation in Ukraine in late February, Western countries imposed sweeping new sanctions on Moscow, freezing around half of Moscow’s gold and foreign exchange reserves. According to Kremlin Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov, these assets “have been essentially stolen” by the West. Last week, Nikolay Patrushev, the secretary of Russia’s National Security Council, claimed that the US, which has supported the sanctions, is seeking to weaken and destroy Russia, and is using Ukraine as a “battering ram” to achieve that goal.

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See? Just to make their point that you have “No Right’ To Get Tired Of Ukraine Conflict”, they cut off your gas…

Ukraine Halts Russian Oil Transit To EU – Transneft (RT)

Kiev has stopped the operation of a section of the southern branch of the ‘Druzhba’ (Friendship) oil pipeline that transits Ukraine, RIA Novosti reported on Wednesday, citing Russian oil-exporting company Transneft. According to the report, oil transmission has been suspended for an indefinite period. “In Ukraine, the section [of Druzhba] has been stopped, from Brod to the Carpathians,” said Igor Demin, an adviser to the president of Transneft. He added that deliveries via the Belarusian section of the pipeline were continuing. Last week, Kiev stopped oil flows to Hungary through the Druzhba pipeline, explaining the suspension was linked to a Russian air strike that reportedly had hit a transformer station near the border with Belarus.


It stated that the service was suspended due to a “drop in voltage.” Kiev later announced plans to raise transit fees for Russian oil running through the pipeline to the EU, due to higher costs resulting from Russian air and missile attacks targeting the country’s energy infrastructure. Ukrainian oil transit fees have already been raised twice this year. The last hike, in April, reportedly brought the total increase on an annualized basis to 51%. Built in the 1960s, Druzhba is one of the longest pipeline networks in the world, which carries crude some 4,000km from Russia to refineries in the Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia.

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We don’t believe you. But still, question: what did you pay?

EU Claims To Have Fully Substituted Russian Gas (RT)

The European Union has entirely replaced Russian natural gas imports with LNG and pipeline gas from alternative reliable suppliers, Energy Commissioner Kadri Simson told a plenary session of the European Parliament on Wednesday. The bloc is due to debate a gas price cap proposal on Thursday to prevent sky-high costs for consumers. “Diversification, demand reduction, a common storage policy [and] our #RepowerEU actions are making a difference,” Simson tweeted after the session, adding: “But we need to stay vigilant.” The substitution of Russian pipeline gas came on the back of the increased purchases of liquefied natural gas (LNG) from the United States, experts told RIA Novosti. According to the European Commission, between January and August the total volume of gas imports from Russia, including LNG, decreased by 39 billion cubic meters (bcm).


During the same period, LNG supplies from the United States jumped by almost 80% in annual terms. Last year, Russia accounted for around 45% of the EU’s gas imports. According to the International Energy Agency, Moscow supplied 155 bcm to the bloc, while this year imports are expected to drop to a little over a third of that (around 60 bcm). Meanwhile, analysts from the research firm Kpler warned this month that replacing Russian pipeline gas supplies with LNG would result in significant costs for the EU. Unlike pipeline gas, which is usually supplied under long-term contracts, LNG is more often purchased on the spot market, and its cost tends to be many times higher. Meanwhile, increased purchases by the EU have been making it difficult for developing countries to buy LNG, as they are being now forced to compete on price with wealthier nations.

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“Gold purchases by regulators more than quadrupled in the July-September period and totaled 399.3 tons..”

China Secretly Hoarding Gold To Ditch Dollar – Media

Central banks across the world have stepped up their gold purchases after Russia’s overseas assets were frozen as part of sanctions this year, according to strategists cited by the Japanese business daily Nikkei Asia. Some $300 billion of Russian foreign reserves, and billions more from individuals and businesses, have reportedly been frozen by the US and its allies. The Kremlin has repeatedly slammed the seizures as “theft.” Gold purchases by regulators more than quadrupled in the July-September period and totaled 399.3 tons, according to data revealed in the November report of the World Gold Council. The figure marks a dramatic surge from 186 tons recorded in the preceding quarter, and 87.7 tons in the first quarter of this year. Meanwhile the year-to-date total surpasses any full year since 1967.

Emin Yurumazu, a Japan-based economist from Turkey, told the media that “anti-Western countries are eager to accumulate gold holdings on hand,” after nations saw how Russia’s overseas assets were frozen as part of sanctions. The central banks of Turkey, Uzbekistan and India previously said they had bought 31.2 tons, 26.1 tons and 17.5 tons, respectively. It is currently unclear which nations purchased the rest of the 300-ton total calculated in the industry group’s report. Some unidentified purchases are to be expected, but an unspecified slice of “this magnitude is unheard of,” Koichiro Kamei, a financial and precious-metals analyst, was cited by the agency as saying. “China likely bought a substantial amount of gold from Russia,” market analyst and former Japan director for the World Gold Council, Itsuo Toshima, said.

He explained that the People’s Bank of China likely purchased a portion of the Central Bank of Russia’s gold holdings of over 2,000 tons. The analyst noted that this is typical behavior from the Chinese monetary regulator, which did not disclose any gold purchases from 2009 to 2015, and then reported it had increased the reserves by 600 tons. The People’s Bank of China has not published any new reports on gold purchases since 2019. The gold-buying frenzy comes as part of the latest attempts made by central banks to protect their assets by reducing their exposure to the US dollar. China has been a dominant force in the current de-dollarization trend. According to data from the US Treasury Department, the nation sold $121.2 billion in US bonds between March and October.

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Of course they talk. The US wants to know what Russia is thinking.

NATO Contacts Claim Is Media ‘Invention’ – Moscow (RT)

Russia’s top military commander, Valery Gerasimov, did not communicate with Rob Bauer, the chair of NATO’s Military Committee, contrary to what some Western media outlets have claimed, the Russian Defense Ministry has stated. Reports about “typical” conversations between the two military officials and an agreement on the “safe passage of ships in the Black Sea” are “an invention from the start to the end,” a statement released on Wednesday said. Earlier in the day, the news outlet EurActiv, which specializes in covering EU affairs, cited a NATO source as saying that some Eastern European members of the alliance “raised their reservations” about alleged contact between Bauer and Gerasimov.

The source claimed that the two had regular exchanges aimed at deescalating the conflict, particularly in the Black Sea, and that the parties had agreed to “be careful” to avoid accidents. Unnamed members of the alliance questioned the practice, but others said Bauer was entitled to have his channel of communication with Russia. The Dutch admiral served as the chief of defense in his home country before becoming the chair of NATO’s Military Committee in June last year. The Military Committee is composed of the defense chiefs of all member states, while Bauer has the role of the topmost adviser on military strategy to the North Atlantic Council, NATO’s decision-making body. General Gerasimov heads the Russian General Staff, a position equivalent to that of a chief of defense in NATO states.

The EurActiv source claimed that the US, Türkiye, and nations in western and southern Europe “fortunately” countered the push by the UK, Eastern European, and Scandinavian members for “a zero-sum approach” in relations with Russia. Berlin’s role in the alliance has been reduced to virtually nothing, the outlet claimed. “Germans pay, give and don’t speak,” the source was quoted as saying. Nevertheless, NATO members were mostly on the same page in terms of supporting Ukraine, as long as it didn’t compromise their own national security, according to the same tip. The report said that applicants Finland and Sweden were unlikely to join the US-led bloc before June next year, when Türkiye holds national elections. Ankara blocked their accession, claiming that the two nations were not committed to fighting terrorist groups threatening Turkish national security.

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“Oddly, the advertisers are abandoning the platform as its user-base is growing to record highs…”

Anti-Twitter Advertisers Have Been Under-Performing The Market For Months (ZH)

The last few months have seen a growing number of companies choosing to exercise their freedom of speech by choosing to abandon any advertising platforms that dare allow freedom of speech to virulently spread among its users. Since Elon Musk’s takeover of Twitter, the fearmongery and virtue-signal-ery has been turned up to ’11’ as the ‘woke-est’ of those companies have reportedly pulled hundreds of millions of dollars worth of advertising from the social media platform (despite Musk’s insistence that “Twitter’s strong commitment to content moderation remains absolutely unchanged.”) Oddly, the advertisers are abandoning the platform as its user-base is growing to record highs…

So, in an effort to quantify just how broke you can become if you go woke, we created the ‘woke advertisers’ basket. This is a market-cap weighted index of 34 stocks representing our best aggregation of the woke-est companies who have publicly claimed they are withdrawing/pausing their advertising on Twitter… and in most cases, have played the ‘virtue signal’ card while doing so over the “dangers” of being on such a “hate-filled” platform”.

Note: an * means the company has issued a statement or was publicly reported as stopping its ads on Twitter and subsequently confirmed. Otherwise, companies identified on this list are “quiet quitters”, based on a Media Matters analysis of Pathmatics data. These companies were previously advertising on Twitter, but then stopped for a significant period of time following direct outreach, controversies, and warnings from media buyers. Since the start of June, when US economic surprise data started to turn down and economic weakness began to be acknowledged – the companies that make up the basket of stocks that have decided to pull back from advertising on Twitter have been underperforming (-11.4% vs S&P -1.9%)…

Additionally, the anti-Twitter basket has significantly underperformed since 03/25 when Musk made his initial offer to buy Twitter (-17% vs S&P -11%) and also underperformed since Musk took over Twitter on 10/27 (+3.3% vs S&P +5.1%), even as the broad market has squeezed notably higher. Is the signaling of how virtuous they are by antagonizing Elon Musk merely a cover for extensive cost cutting and marketing budget reductions as the C-Suite sees recession imminent… Who knows? sBut we suspect that if things are about to shift from bad to worse in the global economy, these anti-Twitter companies are perhaps more likely to underperform (having shown their cards already).

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“They broke the deal..”

Elon Musk: Coalition of Political Groups Behind Lack of Moderation Council (ET)

Elon Musk said Tuesday that Twitter is lacking a moderation council because of the actions of a “large coalition of political and social activists.” The billionaire businessman took over the platform in October and promised shortly after that Twitter would be forming a “content moderation council” that had “widely diverse viewpoints” and that “no major content decisions or account reinstatements will happen before that council convenes.” However, the Tesla CEO said on Tuesday that the absence of a moderation council was due to a group of political and social activists who he claimed broke an agreement with him by encouraging companies to stop advertising on Twitter. Musk was responding to a Twitter user who accused him of penning a “completely fictional” tweet regarding the establishment of a moderation council.


“A large coalition of political/social activist groups agreed not to try to kill Twitter by starving us of advertising revenue if I agreed to this condition,” Musk wrote on Twitter on Tuesday. “They broke the deal,” he added. [..] Earlier this month, Musk claimed that Twitter’s revenue was declining because of “activist groups pressuring advertisers, even though nothing has changed with content moderation and we did everything we could to appease the activists.” “Extremely messed up! They’re trying to destroy free speech in America,” Musk said. The businessman later threatened to name and shame the advertisers who were boycotting the platform following his takeover of the site and despite his assurance that the platform would not become a “free-for-all hellscape” where anything could be said, “with no consequences.” “In addition to adhering to the laws of the land, our platform must be warm and welcoming to all,” Musk wrote in an open letter to advertisers in October.

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Schwaub Schools Dr Urso

 

 

 

 

 

 

Peach Faced Lovebird Parrot on a Saguaro Cactus, Phoenix, Arizona

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Nov 212022
 
 November 21, 2022  Posted by at 9:42 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  60 Responses »


Pablo Picasso Woman with blue collar (Portrait d’Inez) 1941

 

Zelensky Making Ukrainians ‘Suffer’ – Ex-japanese PM (RT)
‘All The Real Skinheads Went To Ukraine’ – American Neo-Nazi (Livshitz)
UN Tells Ukraine To Investigate Video Showing ‘Execution’ Of Russian POWs (RT)
Videos Of Execution Of Russian POWs In Ukraine Are Authentic – NYT (RT)
Ukraine Shelled Radioactive Waste Storage – Official (RT)
A Report from the Front and a Warning (Batiushka)
FTX Reveals Top 50 Creditors Are Owed $3.1 Billion, Seeks To Keep Their Names Confidential
The Covid/Crypto Connection: The Grim Saga of FTX and Sam Bankman-Fried (Tucker)
The Story Arc of SBF and FTX (Ben Hunt)
Unstoppable Crash Worse than 2008 Coming – Jim Rickards (USAW)
The Upside-down World Of Currency (Macleod)
A Step Toward National Suicide? (Conrad Black)
Arizona AG Launches Investigation Into Maricopa County (ZH)
AP: Zero Evidence Joe Biden Discussed Hunter’s Business Dealings (Turley)
Elon Musk Addresses Child Sexual Exploitation Content on Twitter (Tasm)

 

 

 

 


JP Morgan

 

 

 

 

Cracks are beginning to show in the united front.

“The Japanese media is biased towards one side. It is influenced by reports from the West. I can’t help but feel that they only rely on European and American reports..”

Zelensky Making Ukrainians ‘Suffer’ – Ex-japanese PM (RT)

Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky has made the people in his country “suffer,” former Japanese Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori has said. He added that the media in Japan is biased in its coverage of the Russia-Ukraine conflict. “I don’t quite understand why only [Russian President Vladimir] Putin is criticized while Mr. Zelensky isn’t taken to task at all. This is problematic. Mr. Zelensky has made many Ukrainian people suffer,” Mori said in a speech at a political event in Tokyo on Friday, as quoted by Kyodo News. “The Japanese media is biased towards one side. It is influenced by reports from the West. I can’t help but feel that they only rely on European and American reports,” he added.

Mori criticized current Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s position on the conflict as “one-sided” and being inclined towards the US. Mori also warned that Russia could “use nuclear weapons” if the situation deteriorates. Putin reaffirmed last month that Moscow will adhere to its nuclear doctrine, which states Russia would use its nuclear arsenal only in response to an attack with weapons of mass destruction or “if the existence of the state itself is at stake.”

After holding various cabinet posts in the 1980s and 90s, Mori served as prime minister from 2000-01. He later led the organizing committee of the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics, but stepped down months before the event began due to a scandal over sexist remarks he made at a meeting. Japan, along with many Western countries, imposed sanctions on Russia after it launched its military operation in Ukraine in late February. Moscow responded by blacklisting more than 380 Japanese legislators and banning Kishida and other top cabinet members from entering the country.

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Hard to read.

“American Neo-Nazi Outlines The Crimes Of His Ukrainian ‘Colleagues”

‘All The Real Skinheads Went To Ukraine’ – American Neo-Nazi (Livshitz)

Earlier this month, Juan Sinmiedo, who runs a popular Telegram channel documenting human rights abuses in Ukraine, published an explosive interview with ‘Boneface’ – real name Kent McLellan – a 32-year-old Neo-Nazi from Florida who joined the fascist volunteer Right Sector group during the Donbass war, and returned to to fight alongside the Azov Battalion in January 2022. The discussion with McLellan shatters many myths and lies that have been circulated about the Maidan coup, the current conflict in Ukraine, and the disturbingly strong influence of nationalist movements within the country. McLellan, the son of the front man of Neo-Nazi rock band Brutal Attack, got involved with far-right activism while just a teenager, and had numerous run-ins with the law for subversive, racially-charged activities. He and other members of the racist organization American Front were detained by the FBI in May 2012, for preparing terrorist acts against ethnic minorities in Florida.


It was this background that led him to travel to Ukraine in 2014. The American fascist circles he moved in had direct links and regular contact with nationalist groups at the forefront of the Maidan, which at the time were hosting large public events “nearly daily in every Oblast that wasn’t seeing war.” As did far-right movements in many other nearby countries, including Finland, Georgia, and Latvia. “In case the world wonders what happened to all the real skinheads. They all went to Ukraine,” McLellan said. It seems the US government approved of the presence of McLellan and others in Ukraine at that time. He says he got caught – it’s not clear by whom or what – teaching Ukrainians DNS poisoning, and the Americans “wanted to sit in and help.” “They didn’t want names or anything, but they wanted to monitor the situation. Without this backing I would’ve been charged with violation of [the] American neutrality act,” McLellan claims.

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Yeah, Ukraine is the ideal investigator here. Like Holland is for MH17.

UN Tells Ukraine To Investigate Video Showing ‘Execution’ Of Russian POWs (RT)

The UN’s human rights monitoring mission in Ukraine has called on Kiev to probe a video that apparently shows the country’s troops executing Russian prisoners of war. Moscow has said that killing captives is a “widespread practice” by Ukraine’s armed forces. The UN body told the Associated Press on Saturday that it “is aware of the video and is looking into it,” adding: “we reiterate our call that all such allegations should be properly and promptly investigated by respective authorities.” The video itself surfaced on social media earlier this week. In it, a group of captured Russian servicemen are shown surrendering to Ukrainian troops and lying down on the ground, before a second clip shows their bodies lying motionless in pools of blood. Another clip with no sound purportedly shows a Russian soldier emerging from a building and opening fire on the Ukrainians, but it is unclear whether that clip is linked to the alleged execution.

The Russian Ministry of Defense described the video as evidence of “the deliberate and methodical murder” of the soldiers, with the Russian Presidential Human Rights Council calling the incident a “demonstrative and audacious crime.” The council demanded an international investigation, and said that it had notified the UN, Council of Europe, Amnesty International, and the International Committee of the Red Cross. “Of course, Ukrainian authorities will investigate this video,” Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Olga Stefanishina told reporters at a security conference in Canada on Saturday. However, she rushed to claim that it is “very unlikely”that the clips show a deliberate execution.

Russia’s Defense Ministry, however, said that not only does the footage depict the “barbarous killing of Russian prisoners of war,” it shows “a widespread practice of the Ukrainian Armed Forces that is actively supported by the Kiev regime and outright ignored by its Western backers.” Back in March, another shocking videoemerged showing Ukrainian troops shooting captured Russian soldiers in the legs at point-blank range, while other wounded Russians lie on the ground nearby. Countless other videos of Russian troops being mistreated by their Ukrainian captors have also surfaced online in the months since Moscow’s military operation in Ukraine began in late February.

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More cracks showing.

Videos Of Execution Of Russian POWs In Ukraine Are Authentic – NYT (RT)

The New York Times says it has verified the authenticity of videos that surfaced online last week, allegedly showing the execution of captive Russian soldiers by Ukrainian troops. The men “appear to have been shot dead at close range,”according to the newspaper. The events shown in the clips occurred in the village of Makeyevka in the People’s Republic of Lugansk mid-November, the newspaper reported on Sunday. “The videos… whose authenticity has been verified by The New York Times, offer a rare look into one gruesome moment among many in the war, but do not show how or why the Russian soldiers were killed,” the NYT wrote, adding that what actually happened to the soldiers remains “a mystery.”

However, the outlet noted out that judging by the footage, “at least 11 Russians… appear to have been shot dead at close range after one of their fellow fighters suddenly opened fire on Ukrainian soldiers standing nearby.” The NYT also cited Dr. Rohini Haar, medical adviser at Physicians for Human Rights, who said that “killing or wounding a combatant, who, having laid down his arms or having no longer means of defense, has surrendered at discretion” is a violation of the laws of international armed conflict. “It looks like most of them were shot in the head,” Haar said of the Russian soldiers in the clips. “There are pools of blood. That indicates that they were just left there dead. There appears to have been no effort to pick them up or help them.”

In one of the videos, which appeared on social media, the Russian servicemen were shown surrendering to Kiev troops and lying down on the ground, before a second clip showed their bodies lying motionless in pools of blood. Another video with no sound, which is also believed to have been made at the scene, purportedly showed a Russian soldier emerging from a building and shooting at the Ukrainians. Russia has described the clips as proof of “deliberate and methodical murder”of its soldiers by Ukraine. The UN has urged an investigation into the videos, with Kiev promising to carry out a probe.

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Courtesy of US/NATO weapons.

Ukraine Shelled Radioactive Waste Storage – Official (RT)

Ukrainian troops have shelled Europe’s biggest nuclear power plant over the last two days, Renat Karchaa, an adviser at Russia’s state nuclear operator Rosenergoatom, said. Karchaa said the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant was targeted on Sunday morning following a barrage fired at the facility the previous day, when six projectiles hit the cooling system of one of the rectors and two struck the radioactive waste storage. He added that the employees were unharmed. According to the Russian Defense Ministry, the plant was shelled twice on Sunday, while 11 “large-caliber artillery shells” were fired on Saturday. The ministry said that projectiles fell close to the reactors, and that the fire was also directed at power lines. “It is impossible to assess the consequences of the shelling because there is a danger of new attacks,” Karchaa said.


The plant had not been targeted that much since late September. according to the official. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), whose team is monitoring the situation on the ground, said that “more than a dozen blasts were heard within a short period of time” on Sunday. It added that experts could see some of the explosions from their windows. “Whoever is behind this, it must stop immediately. As I have said many times before, you’re playing with fire!” IAEA Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi said. Russian soldiers seized the plant shortly after Moscow launched its military operation in Ukraine in late February. Zaporozhye Region, together with three other former Ukrainian territories, eventually joined Russia after holding referendums on the matter in September.

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“Moscow is 1,600 kilometres from Berlin, around 2,500 kilometres from Rome, Paris and London. You know it makes sense. You could be nice and warm soon.”

A Report from the Front and a Warning (Batiushka)

Many work from home, or used to. That is difficult now, because at best you only have three to four hours of electricity before it goes off for at least the same amount of time. There is no light. And then even the best batteries in a computer mean that you lose power after an hour or two – that is, if you have the internet, which is not all the time. And remember to charge up your phone as soon as the power comes back on. The power will not last and may go off all day. You have no way of knowing. And when the power goes off, the boiler also goes off. No heating, no hot water. The windows are taped across in Xs against possible missile blasts, which would cause the glass to shatter. My relatives saw a missile going over last May. It landed in Kiev.

And sometimes the washing machine will stop half-way through the cycle. Power-cut. That is inconvenient. And always remember to carry a flashlight in your pocket or handbag and have at least one other one in the house. Many are using Swedish-made primus stoves to cook – if you can get one and the refills. Some Swedes are doing well out of this. As for shopping, well, the opening hours change with the power cuts, though corner shops remain open, if dark. And of course, Kiev has gone back to a cash economy. The card machines will not work – no electricity. Hopefully, the bank cash dispensers will get restocked often enough. That is, if you have money in your account. My relatives do not have a car. Many of the Ukrainians who are wealthy enough to have cars drove to the West last March/April/May with their recruitment age sons (bribes of up to $5,000 a time to the border guards, who left last), and now live in cramped quarters in the houses of Western people naïve enough and once prosperous enough to take them.

My relatives are very lucky because they can get on minibuses to take them to their house in the country. Just a wooden affair, but there are vegetables there, especially potatoes, and lots of firewood. They had a busy summer in the large vegetable garden. They prepared for the winter, picking, bottling and pickling. The only way of heating there is putting wood in the stove. No gas, but then you do not need any. And you can even live without electricity, as there is a stock of candles. The only thing – it gets really cold there in the winter, -20 or -30 outside, -10 inside, unless you heat constantly. So you stay inside as much as possible and prepare lots of dry firewood for years before.

All of this is a warning to Western Europe. I know you are being distracted by the World Cup soccer circus. Do not be. You too voted for US puppet-leaders like Zelensky? You too wanted to be Ukrainianised by the US? Then this is your future too. You have been warned. I have friends in Latvia, Lithuania and Moldova. They are already living like this. This is a virus that is creeping westwards towards you. You are seeing your future – unless you can get rid of your pro-Nazi puppet-governments in time. Elect Russia-friendly governments. Make friends with your neighbours next door, in the east of Europe. (Never heard of ‘love your neighbour’?). Moscow is 1,600 kilometres from Berlin, around 2,500 kilometres from Rome, Paris and London. You know it makes sense. You could be nice and warm soon.

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Can’t really call this “the smart money”, can you?

FTX Reveals Top 50 Creditors Are Owed $3.1 Billion, Seeks To Keep Their Names Confidential

Amid the frenzied scramble to divulge all of FTX’s dirty secrets, including where the fate of those $8 billion in stolen client funds which were handed over to Alameda ahead of the largest crypto exchange bankruptcy in history, there is one topic that the company’s new CEO (and one-time Enron liquidator) John J. Ray wants to keep under wraps: the identity of its creditors (and FTX clients). Consider the following curious sequence of events that developed over the past week (conveniently summarized by the FT’s Kadhim Shubber): on Monday, FTX said that it will file a list of its top 50 creditors “on or before November 18”). Just one day later, in John J. Ray’s Affidavit in Support of First Day Motion, FTX revealed that this may be a problem since “the Debtors are unable to create a list of their top 50 creditors that includes customers without access tot he data repositories at issues.”

Fast forward to Saturday when in a surprise twist, the Enron liquidator is now asking the judge to keep the names of the company’s creditors and customers (which we assume have been identified), confidential in order to “protect the estate or any entity in respect of a trade secret or other confidential research, development or commercial information.” In retrospect, considering that FTX previously estimated that it has over 1 million creditors – which ostensibly includes all clients of the FTX brokerage from the smallest mom and pop investors to massive Chinese money laundering whales – this is probably not all that surprising, although it will be interesting to see how Judge John Dorsey, who is the appointed Delaware Bankruptcy Court judge on the FTX bankruptcy, will rule on November 22, 2022 at 11:00 a.m. (at Courtroom #5 on the 5th floor at 824 North Market Street in Wilmington) when the First Day hearing takes place.

As an aside, since the creditors of FTX also includes FTX clients, one wonders if there is a political push to keep certain names hidden, despite official denials? [..] Tangentially, as the FT notes in other recent cryptocurrency bankruptcy cases involving Voyager Digital and Celsius Networks, “a key legal question has been determining whether account holders are unsecured creditors or have a higher priority status in determining who gets recovery payments first. Another question likely to arise is whether account holders who withdrew their money just before the bankruptcy filing are subject to clawbacks.” And in a separate filing pushed out later on Saturday, FTX published a list of its top unsecured 50 creditors – with all names and addresses redacted – which shows that the largest creditor (or is that FTX customer) had $226 million parked at the company, and that all of the top 10 creditors had over $100 million in debt with FTX.

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“For some reason, SBF just knew that he was supposed to oppose repurposed drugs, though he knew nothing about the subject at all.”

The Covid/Crypto Connection: The Grim Saga of FTX and Sam Bankman-Fried (Tucker)

A series of revealing texts and tweets by Sam Bankman-Fried, the disgraced CEO of FTX, the once high-flying but now belly-up crypto exchange, had the following to say about his image as a do-gooder: it is a “dumb game we woke westerners play where we say all the right shibboleths and so everyone likes us.” Very interesting. He had the whole game going: a vegan worried about climate change, supports every manner of justice (racial, social, environmental) except that which is coming for him, and shells out millions to worthy charities associated with the left. He also bought plenty of access and protection in D.C., enough to make his shady company the toast of the town.

As part of the mix, there is this thing called pandemic planning. We should know what that is by now: it means you can’t be in charge of your life because there are bad viruses out there. As bizarre as it seems, and for reasons that are still not entirely clear, favoring lockdowns, masks, and vaccine passports became part of the woke ideological stew. This is particularly strange because covid restrictions have been proven, over and over, to harm all the groups about whom woke ideology claims to care so deeply. That includes even animal rights: who can forget the Danish mink slaughter of 2020? Regardless, it’s just true. Masking became a symbol of being a good person, same as vaccinating, veganism, and flying into fits at the drop of a hat over climate change. None of this has much if anything to do with science or reality.

It’s all tribal symbolism in the name of group political solidarity. And FTX was pretty good at it, throwing around hundreds of millions to prove the company’s loyalty to all the right causes. Among them included the pandemic-planning racket. That’s right: there were deep connections between FTX and Covid that have been cultivated for two years. Let’s have a look. Earlier this year, the New York Times trumpeted a study that showed no benefit at all to the use of Ivermectin. It was supposed to be definitive. The study was funded by FTX. Why? Why was a crypto exchange so interested in the debunking of repurposed drugs in order to drive governments and people into the use of patented pharmaceuticals, even those like Remdesivir that didn’t actually work? Inquiring minds would like to know.

Regardless, the study and especially the conclusions turned out to be bogus. David Henderson and Charles Hooper further point out an interesting fact: “Some of the researchers involved in the TOGETHER trial had performed paid services for Pfizer, Merck, Regeneron, and AstraZeneca, all companies involved in developing COVID-19 therapeutics and vaccines that nominally compete with ivermectin.” For some reason, SBF just knew that he was supposed to oppose repurposed drugs, though he knew nothing about the subject at all. He was glad to fund a poor study to make it true and the New York Times played its assigned role in the whole performance.

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I greatly appreciate Ben Hunt’s expertise and analysis here, but in one aspect I have to disagree. I do not believe that FTX is like Bernie Ebbers or Bernie Madoff, who didn’t “start off doing outright fraud” but gradually became a Ponzi. I think FTX was set up to be one. I also think SBF was not the brain behind it, but merely the figurehead. The amounts are too high, and the links to Ukraine and Big Pharma and DNC are too strong. This is not one kid’s brainchild.

The Story Arc of SBF and FTX (Ben Hunt)

I know it seems like I’m making this up, because obviously this cannot happen in the real world. And yet it did. When SBF filed for bankruptcy on FTX.com, Serum was the largest “asset” listed at $2.2 billion, because they had a bajillion of these coins stashed away. The tradable market cap of Serum? $60-something million as of when I’m writing this (probably lower now), because only a minute fraction of a bajillion of these coins (~3%) were actually real, as in they were actually exchanged for value in the real world. A value, of course, that plummeted once this sleight of hand was revealed. That’s the thing about Magical Money Machines and magic tricks alike, they’re not nearly so impressive once you show everyone the trick. But anyhoo, all of these magic tricks get revealed much later.

Right now it’s 2019 and everything is going much better for SBF now that he’s got his flow business established. As a brokerage AND a market-maker AND a hedge fund, his situation is 1,000% better than just being a hedge fund. There’s just one problem. Accounts. Up to now it’s been fantastic setting up all these companies in the Bahamas. No SEC or other pesky US regulators. We can say whatever we like in our marketing documents, like “HIGH RETURNS WITH NO RISK” in all caps. We can issue unregistered bullshit securities like FTT to our heart’s content. But the downside for FTX.com the crypto exchange/brokerage is that they can’t take US accounts. The Big Kahuna of capital and liquidity – the United States – is largely cut off to them. So SBF has gotta do something about that if he’s going to make some real money.

The answer is to set up a brand new crypto exchange/brokerage in the United States, named FTX US (not to be confused with the mothership, FTX.com, oh no we wouldn’t want any confusion about the names! LOL) and subject to US regulatory authority through the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC). FTX US was launched concurrently with a massive Super Bowl/Larry David/Tom Brady-centered ad campaign in Jan/Feb 2022. FTX US is an “affiliate” of FTX.com, meaning that they have overlapping but not identical ownership and management structures (SBF is the largest shareholder and CEO of both entities), but for regulatory purposes they are entirely separate entities, with FTX US subsidiaries holding the necessary commodity market-making licenses from the CFTC to operate in the US. Importantly, custody of the FTX US client accounts can’t (easily) be transferred to FTX.com and neither can the client money.

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“You can’t put it back together. You’ve got to go get a new vase. We broke the vase, and we are shopping for a new one. We are not there yet. We are just cleaning up the mess..”

Unstoppable Crash Worse than 2008 Coming – Jim Rickards (USAW)

Six-time, best-selling financial author James Rickards says the upcoming book “Sold Out” lays out the case why a huge crash is already a certainty sometime in 2023. In a nutshell, broken supply chains have already caused big inflation, and the Fed is raising rates to tamp it back down. On top of the perfect storm of inflation and prolonged supply problems, we have the recent meltdown of the FTX crypto currency exchange. Rickards says, “It is definitely going to cause sequential collapses in the crypto world, but will it jump the fence into the broader financial world? My expectation is it will, but it can take six months or more to play out. . . . We probably have an acute global financial crisis coming anyway. If FTX never existed, I would say we are staring at a worse financial crisis than 2008.

Throw FTX on top of that, and it’s like throwing gasoline on a fire. It will accelerate the fire. So, we’re probably going to have problems anyway, but the FTX implosion just makes it worse.” As far as the dwindling supply chains, Rickards says, “The old supply chain has collapsed. A new supply chain will emerge, and I talk about that in my book and what it will look like. Right now, we are in a very messy middle period where things don’t work well. It’s like a vase. You knock over a vase, and it breaks into 5,000 pieces. You can’t put it back together. You’ve got to go get a new vase. We broke the vase, and we are shopping for a new one. We are not there yet. We are just cleaning up the mess. . . . Russia invades Ukraine.

The Ukrainian plastic conduit factory shuts down, and all of a sudden, the BMW production lines are shut down because they cannot get a part. Again, this is another example of how this is all falling apart, and it’s not going to be put back together quickly. There will be a new supply chain, and I call it supply chain 2.0, but we are in that in between time, and it’s going to be just a mess.” Rickards says the Fed is going to keep raising rates because that is what they keep telling the public. Rickards says, “They are telling us what they are going to do, and you should believe them.” Rickards says we do have inflation, and it’s going to be with us for awhile, but we are also going to get deflation too. Rickards points out, “Why does Warren Buffett and Brookshire Hathaway have $130 billion in cash? Buffett is one of the greatest investors of all time. Why isn’t he out there buying stocks? Again, why does he have $130 billion in cash? It’s because Buffett sees what I see.

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“They will hang on to the myth of its use value until its debasement can no longer be ignored.”

The Upside-down World Of Currency (Macleod)

So long as currency and associated forms of credit are firmly attached to money such that there are minimal differences between their values, there should be no price for them either, other than a value difference arising from counterparty risk. A further distinction between money and currencies can arise if their users suspect that the link might break down. It was the breakdown in this relationship between gold and the dollar that led to the failure of the Bretton Woods agreement in 1971. Therefore, in all logic it is legal money that has no price. But does that mean that when its value differs from that of money, does currency have a price? Not necessarily. So long as currency operates as a medium of exchange, it has a value and not a price.

We can say that a dollar is valued at 0.0005682 ounces of gold, or gold is valued at 1760 dollars. As a legacy of the dollar’s regression from the days when it was on a gold standard, we still attribute no price to the dollar, but now we attribute a price to gold. To do so is technically incorrect. Perhaps an argument for this state of affairs is that gold is subject to Gresham’s law, being hoarded rather than spent. It is the medium of exchange of last resort so rarely circulates. Nevertheless, fiat currencies have consistently lost value relative to legal money, which is gold, so much so that the dollar has lost 98% since the suspension of Bretton Woods, and sterling has lost 99%. Over fifty-one years, the process has been so gradual that users of unanchored currencies as their media of exchange have failed to notice it.

This gradual loss of purchasing power relative to gold can continue indefinitely, so long as the conditions that have permitted it to happen remain without causing undue alarm. Furthermore, for lack of a replacement it is highly inconvenient for currency users to consider that their currency might be valueless. They will hang on to the myth of its use value until its debasement can no longer be ignored.

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“The three-quarters of Americans who correctly consider that America is now on the wrong track can’t be sold Trump again..”

A Step Toward National Suicide? (Conrad Black)

[..] the fact that Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser paid no attention to Trump’s warnings that matters could get out of hand and his offer of 20,000 National Guardsmen indicates the Democrats’ role was a good deal less innocent than they pretend. But Trump knew what desperate and sleazy people he was dealing with, and he doesn’t have a credible excuse for being so reckless. This condemned him to having to continue to emphasize the 2020 election irregularities in order to justify his calling forth such a huge and discontented crowd at the Washington Elipse on Jan. 6, 2021. Of course, he no more sought an insurrection than Sens. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) did.

The only way to complete Trump’s work and root out and politically exterminate those who have corrupted the intelligence and justice arms of the federal government and have dragooned the contemptible but still insidiously influential national political media in full metal jacket Trump-hate, is for Trump to identify and support the successor whom he favors as Republican presidential candidate. He shouldn’t go back to his 2016 playbook and insult all the other prominent Republicans. He has exchanged enough fire with his Republican enemies, contemptible though many of them are, and did well to win the first round and come so close in the second. The third round last week was an acute disappointment, and the Republican Party doesn’t need, and the American public doesn’t wish for, an internecine war on the scale that would rage if Trump sought another presidential nomination.

But another candidate plausibly pledged to the enactment of the Trump program and supported by Trump but not stigmatized by him, could lead the desperately needed national political purgation. For the first time in its history, with this administration, the public policy of the United States is now heavily influenced by a chronically woke, largely America-hating rag-tag of subversives, charlatans, and maladjusted zealots who believe that America is a guilty country that needs to be substantially deconstructed and morally humiliated. The three-quarters of Americans who correctly consider that America is now on the wrong track can’t be sold Trump again, but they would support a Trump-endorsed candidate advocating the Trump program. That’s now the best that can be done.

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Still counting.

Arizona AG Launches Investigation Into Maricopa County (ZH)

The Arizona attorney general’s office has launched an investigation into irregularities in Maricopa County’s handling of the midterm elections.AG Mark Brnovich’s election integrity unit has demanded a full report of well-publicized irregularities, and what he claims is evidence of “statutory violations.” The letter, sent late Saturday by Assistant AG Jennifer Wright to the county’s top civil division attorney, Thomas Liddy, is a major escalation over widespread problems with voting tabulators and printers, which delayed the declaration of a winner in razor-thin races in the attorney general’s race and the gubernatorial race. Gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake has questioned the media’s premature declaration that her opponent, Democrat Katie Hobbs – who wasn’t exactly popular, won.


The letter demands a full report on how voting machine and printer issues were handled, along with a copy of each polling location’s Official Ballot Report, as well as explanations for any discrepancies. Wright also demanded that the evidence be turned over before the final vote certification which is due Nov. 28. “These complaints go beyond pure speculation, but include first-hand witness accounts that raise concerns regarding Maricopa’s lawful compliance with Arizona election law,” reads the letter. “Furthermore, statements made by both Chairman Gates and Recorder Richer, along with information Maricopa County released through official modes of communication appear to confirm potential statutory violations of title 16.” Among the potential legal violations are poll workers giving improper instructions to voters whose ballot tabulations were delayed by the issues.

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“I thought the article released online, it’s going to be printed tomorrow in the Times, was good. I think you’re clear.”

AP: Zero Evidence Joe Biden Discussed Hunter’s Business Dealings (Turley)

[..] this weekend, the Associated Press made a whopper of a claim that there is no evidence even suggesting that President Joe Biden ever spoke to his son about his foreign dealings. I previously discussed how the Bidens have succeeded in a Houdini-like trick in making this elephant of a scandal disappear from the public stage. They did so by enlisting the media in the illusion. However, this level of audience participation in the trick truly defies belief. The statement of the Associated Press at this stage of the scandal is breathtaking but telling: “Joe Biden has said he’s never spoken to his son about his foreign business, and nothing the Republicans have put forth suggests otherwise.” For years, the media has continued to report President Biden’s repeated claim that “I have never spoken to my son about his overseas business dealings.”

At the outset, the media only had to suspend any disbelief that the president could fly to China as Vice President with his son on Air Force 2 without discussing his planned business dealings on the trip. Of course, the emails on the laptop quickly refuted this claim. However, the media buried the laptop story before the election or pushed the false claim that it was fake Russian disinformation. President Biden’s denials continued even after an audiotape surfaced showing President Biden leaving a message for Hunter specifically discussing coverage of those dealings. The call is specifically referring to these dealings: “Hey pal, it’s Dad. It’s 8:15 on Wednesday night. If you get a chance just give me a call. Nothing urgent. I just wanted to talk to you. I thought the article released online, it’s going to be printed tomorrow in the Times, was good. I think you’re clear. And anyway if you get a chance give me a call, I love you.”

But who are you going to believe, the media or your own ears. Some of us have written for two years that Biden’s denial of knowledge is patently false. It was equally evident that the Biden family was selling influence and access. There are emails of Ukrainian and other foreign clients thanking Hunter Biden for arranging meetings with his father. There are photos from dinners and meetings that tie President Biden to these figures, including a 2015 dinner with a group of Hunter Biden’s Russian and Kazakh clients. People apparently were told to avoid directly referring to President Biden. In one email, Tony Bobulinski, then a business partner of Hunter’s, was instructed by Biden associate James Gilliar not to speak of the former veep’s connection to any transactions:

“Don’t mention Joe being involved, it’s only when u [sic] are face to face, I know u [sic] know that but they are paranoid.” Instead, the emails apparently refer to President Biden with code names such as “Celtic” or “the big guy.” In one, “the big guy” is discussed as possibly receiving a 10 percent cut on a deal with a Chinese energy firm; other emails reportedly refer to Hunter Biden paying portions of his father’s expenses and taxes. Bobulinski has given multiple interviews that he met twice with Joe Biden to discuss a business deal in China with CEFC China Energy Co. That would seem obvious evidence. In addition, the New York Post reported on a key email that discussed “the proposed percentage distribution of equity in a company created for a joint venture with CEFC China Energy Co.” That was the email on March 13, 2017 that included references of “10 held by H for the big guy.”

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Priority #1. Can you believe @jack never did anything about it? And those 1000s of woke censors who silenced Trump and all the doctors?

Elon Musk Addresses Child Sexual Exploitation Content on Twitter (Tasm)

Elon Musk has begun addressing the issue of posting child sexual exploitation content on Twitter after years of the platform’s inactivity on the subject under past management. Previously, the platform did not comprehensively address the issue of publishing content that demonstrates the sexual exploitation of children. The problem of publishing pornographic content showing child sexual exploitation (CSE) on various Internet resources is deeply disturbing. While many platforms are fighting this by using tools that allow them to find and remove such content, Twitter, before it was bought by Elon Musk, did not put any real effort into this for years.

Eliza Bleu, a survivor of human trafficking and an advocate for victims, has taken this fight to the next level. In an interview with Tesmanian, she said that for the past two years she has been trying to get Twitter to take concrete steps, while other advocates have been working on this for 10 years. All this time, Twitter has not actually done anything meaningful to combat the problem. For ten years, the platform has not had a proper reporting form for content containing child sexual abuse material. Thanks to the efforts of Eliza and those who supported her, in February 2022, Twitter added a feature to easily report child sexual exploitation material, which was a huge victory in a years-long struggle.

However, a few months later, Twitter “took the easy reporting system for minor survivors away.” This was deeply disturbing news, as it is difficult to find a reasonable reason why the ability for platform users to easily report about CSE content has been removed. On October 28, Twitter, with all its problems, many of which were hidden, was sold to Elon Musk. Eliza now had to work with the new CEO to find a solution. Already on November 19, she shared the progress of their cooperation, emphasizing that the new management of the company takes the CSE problem seriously and published amazing news: the three most popular hashtags used to sell child sexual abuse material on Twitter are almost completely cleaned out.

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Nov 192022
 


Rembrandt van Rijn The resurrection of Christ 1639

 

Towards the Real New World Order (Batiushka)
US Lectures Allies Over Poland Missile Incident – Politico (RT)
‘The US Won’t Sacrifice Chicago For Warsaw’ (Misnik)
A Smoldering Fuse (Jim Kunstler)
‘Aid To Ukraine,’ the US Democratic Party And The Collapse Of FTX (Livshitz)
FTX Boss Accused Of Using Offshore Funds After Bankruptcy (RT)
Ukraine – Switching The Lights Off (MoA)
Ukraine Has Lost 40% Of Energy System As Kyiv Sees First Snow (ZH)
Ukraine Is ‘War Between West And Russia’ – Turkish Official (RT)
Former Trump Advisor: Biden Admin Has No End Goal For Ukraine War (JTN)
Russian Oil Price Cap Idea ‘Ridiculous’ – Former US Treasury Secretary (RT)
DOJ Appoints Special Counsel For Trump Probes, But What About Hunter? (JTN)
MTG Says Kevin McCarthy, House GOP Will Defund Trump Special Counsel (JTN)
G20 Pushes Vaccine Passports For All Future International Travel (ZH)
Colin Campbell: A Tribute To The Father Of The Concept Of “Peak Oil” (Ugo Bardi)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Alex Jones

 

 

 

 

Meloni

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“..Kiev, Warsaw, the Baltics and in London, they should remember what the Americans did to Hussein and Bin Laden. They are quite capable of doing the same again, pulling the plug on them all.”

Towards the Real New World Order (Batiushka)

Now we are talking about a real ‘New World Order’. This is being fought for in the Ukraine and in world political and economic fora at this very moment. And its ideological and military leader is the Russian Federation, the only country with the guts to lead the real New World Order. This will be to its credit for as long as the world lasts. In this context the Saker has written an excellent article, titled with the following hypothetical question: “What would a Russian Defeat Mean for the People of the West?” Although the Saker has given an excellent answer, I would give my own, which is a summary of his. This is: A Russian defeat at the hands of the ‘Combined West’ would mean the end of the world and therefore no New World Order.

Fear not, since Russia is not about to be defeated, the world is not going to end just yet and there is going to be, and there already is, a New World Order. Let us be frank, the Combined West has attacked Russia again and again in history. Many do not know that the Teutonic Knights in the thirteenth century were international, pan-Western. The Napoleonic Invasion of 1812 was carried out by twelve Western nationalities. The Crimean War, i. e., the 1854 Invasion of Russia, was carried out by the French, the British, the Ottomans and the Sardinians. As for the Austro-Hungarian Army and the Kaiser’s Army in 1914, that too was an effort of the Combined West, and if it had not been for the Revolution, Russia would have taken Vienna and Berlin later in 1917. And Hitler’s invasion 27 years later was equally multinational.

And such is the case today, with the Kiev regime’s mercenary army, armed by multinational NATO. Today the US mentors of the Kiev regime are desperate for peace talks to begin. Peace could have been had at any time between February 2014 and April 2022. The US did not want it then and did not allow it then, so now they will have to pay the price. The US elite knows that they are about to lose big time. This is their last chance and the last chance for the former Ukraine – for that is what we are talking about now. Like so many, these Americans have big mouths, but when it comes to it, it is all just hot air. And although Russia is talking at the US request in order to keep channels open, it is ignoring ridiculous American demands.

Today Russia has no reason to talk. It is successfully fighting against and so demilitarising NATO in the Ukraine. Everybody knows it. However, we are also at a dangerous moment because the US is losing control of its puppets. Just as it promoted Hussein in Iraq or Bin Laden in Afghanistan, ISIS in Syria and any number of Latin American gangster-puppets and then lost control of them because they refused to behave as puppets, so they risk losing control now. The lickspittle Kiev regime and its allies in Poland, the Baltics and even in the UK (there they have been singing even pop songs with an American accent for over sixty years) are being more American than the Americans. The pupil is worse than the teacher.

The recent provocation of a Ukrainian missile landing in Poland and the Poles and Latvians claiming it was Russian is an example, The Americans refused to fall for it. Before that the threat of a dirty bomb being prepared by the Kiev regime was another example. Alarmed, the Americans stopped that nonsense. The UK’s anti-German destruction of the Nordstream pipeline was yet another example. The culprit was covered up, just as the Americans covered up the culprits of MH-17. In Kiev, Warsaw, the Baltics and in London, they should remember what the Americans did to Hussein and Bin Laden. They are quite capable of doing the same again, pulling the plug on them all.

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Warsaw and Kiev try to drag the US directly into war, but the US refuses.

US Lectures Allies Over Poland Missile Incident – Politico (RT)

US officials have called on their European and Ukrainian counterparts to tread lightly when commenting on a deadly missile blast in Poland, Politico reported on Thursday. According to three Western officials interviewed by the outlet, over the last couple of days US officials have asked their European colleagues and the office of Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky to be careful when speaking about what caused the blast. They also reportedly made a series of urgent phone calls in which they requested that their NATO allies not make any definitive statements until an investigation is carried out. The outreach efforts come as Western and Ukrainian officials have been at loggerheads about who was responsible for the explosion in the Polish village of Przewodow close to the Ukrainian border that killed two people.

While Western officials have said that the blast was probably caused by a Ukrainian missile, Kiev insists that it was Russian in origin. According to Politico, these statements “illustrate one of the first major divergences in opinion between Washington and Kiev” since the start of Russia’s military campaign in the neighboring state in late February. US officials are trying to downplay this rift, but new fissures between Washington and Kiev may emerge as the conflict drags on, the report says. According to Heather Conley, a former State Department official, the “confusion” surrounding the Poland missile incident was a “really important test run” for the US, NATO, and Ukraine. “I think we all learned a pretty valuable lesson in [that] you cannot say something right off the bat until you understand what it is … because the stakes are so high right now,” she told Politico.

Following the Tuesday blast, Zelensky pinned the blame on Russia, calling the incident “a very serious escalation” and describing it as an attack on NATO and demanding a response. Later, however, he toned down his claims, admitting that “we do not know 100%” what caused the blast. The Russian Defense Ministry denied any involvement in the incident, saying its military experts had analyzed the photos from the scene and identified the debris as parts of an S-300 air defense system missile used by Ukraine.

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And here’s why the US refuses.

By Lidia Misnik, a Moscow-based reporter focused on the political process, sociology and international relations.

‘The US Won’t Sacrifice Chicago For Warsaw’ (Misnik)

“We approached the moment of truth in the confrontation between the collective West and Russia. When it happened, it became clear that an attack by Russia could be claimed. This situation tested the effectiveness of NATO’s strategy for ensuring the security of the collective West,” Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for US and Canadian Studies Vladimir Vasiliev told RT. He noted that the incident itself featured an element of happenstance, but that it helped shed light on a long-standing question: To what extent is the West prepared to invoke Article Five to defend NATO members? As Vasiliev noted, in this situation, the West “put the brakes on everything,” and the US quickly took cover behind the version that it was a Ukrainian rocket.

“There was always a question about the extent to which the US would be prepared to intervene on behalf of Riga, Vilnius, or Warsaw, and in doing so sacrifice Boston, Chicago, or California. And now it becomes clear that there is a problem and that the US is not willing to sacrifice its own security, its own territories,” Vasiliev said. In his words, this episode is extremely important for Russia, because it shows that the US is not prepared to invoke Article Five until there is a danger to the country itself or at least to some of the most important member states of the bloc, primarily Western Europe. “There is a certain understanding that conflicts such as this one should be resolved by others. The US will gladly put Poland, the Baltic States, Bulgaria, and Romania in the line of fire while itself staying out of the war zone.

That’s where the entire NATO architecture begins to crumble. Domestic politics will always take precedence,” Vasiliev added. From this situation, he believes, a far-reaching conclusion can be drawn: Ukraine in any shape or form is not wanted by NATO. Vasiliev says it is clear that the US is playing a geopolitical game against Russia by using Ukraine, which is expendable. This allows the vital interests of Washington to remain untouched. According to him, the countries of Eastern Europe are equally considered not to be vital interests, as are Finland and Sweden, and likely Türkiye.

The calm before the storm in Ukraine – MacGregor

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“This complex fraud will smolder for a few weeks before it explodes into an extinction-grade event for the Democratic Party..”

A Smoldering Fuse (Jim Kunstler)

Thirty-seven billion more dollars for Ukraine? (That’s thirty-seven thousand millions of dollars, by the way.) Bringing the total this year to a click-or-two over ninety billion (ninety-thousand millions), on top of whatever Sam Bankman-Fried’s FTX company funneled through that sad-sack international money laundromat — soon to be the darkest backwater of a European failed state since Field Marshal Melchior von Hatzfeldt of Westphalia left Bohemia a corpse-strewn wasteland after the Battle of Jankau (1645). It really doesn’t matter how much more money we pound down that rat-hole, you understand, because by the time various parties — the weapons-makers, Volodymyr Zelensky, sundry members of the US House of Representatives, the Biden family, the World Economic Forum — are finished creaming off their fair shares, poor Ukraine won’t have enough cash-on-hand to replace six fuse-boxes in Zaporizhzhia.

Against this backdrop, the USA enters a holiday season near-death spiral as unspooling scandals battle a collapsing economy for supremacy of the alt news sites. Case-in-point: the aforementioned FTX monkey business, a metastasizing tumor of the body politic. This complex fraud will smolder for a few weeks before it explodes into an extinction-grade event for the Democratic Party. The usual suspects among the mainstream media are trying strenuously to ignore it, but the shreds of this exploding money-borg are already sticking to guilty parties far and wide across the political landscape like so much rotting flesh.

FTX commander-in-chief Sam Bankman-Fried remains at large after steering the crypto-currency trading platform into a bankruptcy so hideously tangled that the assigned liquidator in court proceedings, one John Ray III, who oversaw the Enron aftermath years ago, was boggled by what he’s found so far (and it’s early in the game): Namely, a company run by a handful of twenty-something drug freaks with no idea what they were doing, no record-keeping, and a slime trail of misappropriated investors’ funds leading to Kiev and Geneva through various crooked American political action committees, and the halls of Congress — with echos in ballot harvesting shenanigans which shaped the outcome of this month’s US elections.

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“Bankman-Fried has boasted of meeting policymakers in Washington “every two or three weeks for the last year.”

‘Aid To Ukraine,’ the US Democratic Party And The Collapse Of FTX (Livshitz)

Bankman-Fried is a very well-connected figure indeed in US politics. Over the course of the 2020 presidential election cycle, he contributed $5.2 million to two super PACs supporting Joe Biden’s campaign, and was the overall second-largest individual donor to Biden that year. Such extravagant spending appears trivial today. In 2021/22, he provided tens of millions to Democratic causes and candidates, becoming the party’s second-largest donor, behind only “spyless coup” specialist George Soros. Bankman-Fried has boasted of meeting policymakers in Washington “every two or three weeks for the last year.” Over 2022, this has included multiple audiences with senior government officials and top Biden advisers at the White House. These meetings escalated in volume around the time that the Ukraine conflict began.

On March 7, exactly one week before Aid for Ukraine was launched, his brother Gabe Bankman-Fried – who directs his political operations – visited the White House along with Jenna Narayanan, a Democratic strategist who once worked for the Democracy Alliance, which has been called the “most powerful liberal donor club” in the US. Bankman-Fried himself then visited the White House on numerous occasions in April and May, concurrent with him donating $865,000 to the Democratic National Committee. In early June, mere days after his last recorded White House meet-and-greet, Bankman-Fried announced he would invest up to $1 billion in further funds between then and 2024 to guarantee Biden – or whoever might take his place – won the next presidential election. These activities have been interpreted by many as an attempt by Bankman-Fried to ingratiate himself with politicians to further his commercial interests.

It is certainly true that, at the same time, he and FTX high-rankers were attempting to influence US lawmakers on crypto regulation, to make the market more favorable for his company. In this context, the promised $1 billion appears to be a dangled carrot, an implied promise of future financing if Bankman-Fried got his way. Accompanying him on some of these visits was Mark Wetjen, FTX head of policy and regulatory strategy, who previously served as commissioner on the Commodity Futures Trading Commission under President Barack Obama – but only some. Were the other meetings related to Ukraine? If so, the $1 billion pledge may have reflected what Bankman-Fried thought could be secretly skimmed from Aid for Ukraine for Democratic Party purposes. It’s conspicuous that in mid-October, he completely disowned that enormous commitment, saying, “That was a dumb quote. I think my messaging was sloppy and inconsistent in some cases.”

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“BAHAMAS GOVT ORDERED BANKMAN-FRIED TO HACK FTX SYSTEM AND TRANSFER ASSETS TO THE BAHAMAS GOVT ACCOUNT: COURT FILING”

BAHAMAS SECURITIES REGULATOR SAYS IT ORDERED FTX CRYPTO WALLETS TO BE TRANSFERRED TO GOVERNMENT WALLETS

SAM BANKMAN STOLE $300 MILLION OF THE $420 MILLION FTX RAISED FROM INVESTORS LAST YEAR IN OCTOBER. (WSJ)

SBF’s lawyers at Paul Weiss have dropped him as a client: “We informed Mr. Bankman-Fried several days ago, after the filing of the FTX bankruptcy, that conflicts have arisen that precluded us from representing him”

FTX Boss Accused Of Using Offshore Funds After Bankruptcy (RT)

The collapsed cryptocurrency exchange FTX has provided court evidence suggesting that its former CEO, Sam Bankman-Fried, had transferred digital assets belonging to the company to regulators in the Bahamas just after filing for bankruptcy. In a bombshell emergency court filing on Thursday, FTX claimed that the government of the Bahamas directed Bankman-Fried to gain “unauthorized access” while in custody. While thousands of clients have been denied access to their funds, millions of dollars in crypto reportedly continued to be drained from FTX wallets over the weekend through a back door in the Bahamas. The filing cited an interview published by Vox on Wednesday, in which Bankman-Fried expressed disdain for regulators. “F**k regulators,” he said in the interview, adding: “They make everything worse. They don’t protect customers at all.” “You know what was maybe my biggest single f**k up?” he asked. “Chapter 11.”


The motion lodged by FTX in the US Bankruptcy Court in Delaware says the alleged conduct puts “in serious question” a request by regulators in the Bahamas for recognition as liquidators in the bankruptcy. “[I]n connection with investigating a hack on Sunday, November 13, Mr. Bankman-Fried and [FTX co-founder Gary] Wang, stated in recorded and verified texts that ‘Bahamas regulators’ instructed that certain post-petition transfers of Debtor assets be made by Mr. Wang and Mr. Bankman-Fried (who the Debtors understand were both effectively in the custody of Bahamas authorities) and that such assets were ‘custodied on FireBlocks under control of Bahamian gov’t,’” the filing said. FTX, which is based in the Bahamas due to the relaxed tax laws, collapsed on November 11 in a scandal that has cost investors more than $11 billion. The debacle followed reports of mishandled customer funds and abandoned acquisition plans by rival exchange Binance. The scandal has triggered a crisis of confidence in the cryptocurrency market and caused the value of assets including Bitcoin to sink.

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“The clobber list also includes this curious item: “The strike has resulted in the neutralisation of the production capacities for nuclear weaponry.”

Ukraine – Switching The Lights Off (MoA)

The careful destruction of energy systems in Ukraine continues. From today’s clobber list as provided by the Defense Ministry of Russia: ” On 17 November, the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation launched a concentrated strike, using high-precision long-range air-, sea- and ground-based weapons, at the facilities of military control, defence industry, as well as related fuel and energy infrastructure of Ukraine. The goals of the strike have been reached. All the missiles have accurately stricken the assigned facilities.” I have no idea if the last line is true but it does not matter much. The targeting of 330 kilovolt transformers in various switching stations has cut some 50% of the distribution capability of Ukraine’s electricity network. These transformers weigh up to 200 tons.

There are no replacements. You do not buy them at the next corner but will have order them with years of lead time. As far as I can tell Russia is currently Russia the only producer of transformers of that type. Isn’t it a war crime to destroy the infrastructure that supplies civilians? It depends. If the infrastructure is used exclusively for civilian purpose the destruction is illegal. But the electricity and transport infrastructure in Ukraine is used for civilian AND military purposes. In a recent Politico piece Ukrainian officials are even confirming that: Ukraine tells allies it may not be able to recover from more Russian attacks on energy systems: ” An unreliable energy sector could have deadly consequences, Ukrainian officials say. In recent conversations, they’ve added that it could halt food production and transport operations — critical services needed to support military operations.”

The clobber list also includes this curious item: “The strike has resulted in the neutralisation of the production capacities for nuclear weaponry.” I wonder where and what that has been: “One depot of artillery armament, delivered by western countries and prepared for being sent to troops, has been destroyed. The redeployment of the reserve forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU), and the delivery of foreign armament to operations areas have been frustrated.” The last sentence describes the real purpose of the attacks on the energy systems.

The lack of energy is degrading the railway network that brings weapons from the west to the eastern front. It makes redeployment of units from one front section to another very difficult and time consuming. It will give the Russian forces the advantage when they change the Schwerpunkt of their attacks from one corner of the frontline to another. Another effect of the strikes on the electricity systems and the blackouts in the big cities that follow them is a renewed stream of refugees that will want reach western Europe. It will over time change the public opinion and the political priorities of those countries. If they fail to end the war they will have to carry the burden.

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“The New York Times notes the continued emergency that the country’s vital nuclear power plants are facing, given they themselves must rely on the national grid for aspects of their normal operations.”

Ukraine Has Lost 40% Of Energy System As Kyiv Sees First Snow (ZH)

Ukraine’s largest city and capital of Kyiv, with about 3 million residents, saw half its home and businesses plunged into darkness following Tuesday’s largescale Russian airstrikes which once again targeted energy infrastructure nationwide. Much of the electricity was restored in the capital city Wednesday, while much of it remained off in many other parts of the country. In a rare occurrence, most of the western city of Lviv had also been plunged into darkness this week, after what authorities called the biggest wave of Russian strikes on power facilities since the invasion began. “Photos of Kyiv draped in darkness have become a shareable illustration of winter in Ukraine this year: dark, cold, dangerous,” observed The Hill.

“Ukraine’s energy infrastructure is under attack from Russia, which has failed to defeat Ukrainian forces on the battlefield and is now once again targeting civilians.” An estimated 100 missiles had rained down on Ukrainian cities over the span of just a couple hours on Tuesday, chiefly targeting the energy grid. President Zelensky had already earlier in November warned that 40% of the country’s energy system has been destroyed. One Kyiv resident, Vladimir Yanachuk, was cited in NPR as saying, “We are not afraid about this. Ukrainians are not afraid about this,” while acknowledging: “Winter will be hard. But this winter will be hard not only for Ukrainians, but for Russian soldiers too.”

Temperatures in the capital and other parts of Ukraine have dipped below freezing this week, with the first snow fall of the season dusting Kyiv. The AFP reports, “The first snow of the winter falls on Maidan Square in Kyiv, blanketing its statues and anti-tank obstacles as the Ukrainian capital faces blackouts and power outages from a fresh series of Russian strikes targeting the country’s energy infrastructure.” Meanwhile The New York Times notes the continued emergency that the country’s vital nuclear power plants are facing, given they themselves must rely on the national grid for aspects of their normal operations.

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“What we want is an end to this war. Someone is trying not to end the war. The US sees the prolongation of the war as its interest.”

Ukraine Is ‘War Between West And Russia’ – Turkish Official (RT)

The West is using Ukraine to wage a war against Russia and has gone so far as to sabotage Turkish diplomacy that sought to negotiate an end to it, the deputy leader of Türkiye’s ruling AKP party, Numan Kurtulmus, told CNN Turk on Friday. “This war is not between Russia and Ukraine, it is a war between Russia and the West,” Kurtulmus told the outlet, adding that “the US and some countries in Europe” are prolonging the conflict by supporting Ukraine. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is talking to both Moscow and Kiev, said Kurtulmus, and in March managed to organize negotiations in Istanbul that looked promising. Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Ukrainian counterpart, Vladimir Zelensky, “were going to sign” a deal, but “someone didn’t want” that to happen.

According to Ukrainian media, Kiev received a message in April that the West was not interested in peace with Russia, which encouraged Zelensky to break off the talks. The messenger was reportedly none other than the UK prime minister at the time, Boris Johnson. “There was progress on certain issues, and we were reaching the final point, and then suddenly we saw that the war accelerated,” Kurtulmus told CNN Turk on Friday. “What we want is an end to this war. Someone is trying not to end the war. The US sees the prolongation of the war as its interest.” In his opinion, the conflict has made much of Europe clamor for NATO to become more active against the perceived threat from Russia, which benefits Washington.

According to Kurtulmus, the “balance of the world system disappeared” with the demise of the Soviet Union, and a “fierce power struggle” is currently taking place. “It is essential to establish a global political system. It is necessary to establish new institutions that will ensure world peace,” he said. Kurtulmus is a former Turkish deputy prime minister, who has been Erdogan’s deputy at the head of AKP since 2018. His comments came as Russia agreed to extend the Turkish-negotiated deal for exporting grain through the Black Sea by 120 days, on the condition Kiev doesn’t use the sea corridor to carry out more attacks.

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No coincidence. If you don’t want an end, you’re not going to define an end goal.

Former Trump Advisor: Biden Admin Has No End Goal For Ukraine War (JTN)

Former Donald Trump advisor Victoria Coates said the Biden administration doesn’t have an end goal for its involvement in the war in Ukraine. “I think it’s a lot of confusion within the administration,” Victoria Coates said on Friday’s edition of the “Just the News, No Noise” TV show. “You’ll hear the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, General Milley saying he wants to negotiate. Then we hear from the National Security Council that we don’t want to negotiate. So there’s friction within the administration. Unfortunately, I think that means we don’t have strong direction from the top.” Coates speculated that conflicting agendas within the administration were undermining Washington’s response to the conflict. “They’re all arguing about what kind of weapon weapon systems they may or may not give the Ukrainians,” Coates said. “They’re arguing about whether or not they should negotiate. It’s very confusing.”


Coates said that this inevitably will lead to scrutiny from the next Congress. “This is why you have a lot of concern out of the new Congress for these huge supplemental requests that are coming in,” Coates explained. “What’s the purpose here? Because if we have a strategy to win, and I think the Ukrainians have shown the will to win, how do we get them across that finish line sooner rather than later so the American people aren’t still feeling the pain of this conflict?” “We’re up against $100 billion of support to Ukraine over the course of the last 10 months,” Coates said. “Now, maybe I would spend more money if it means we’re going to defeat Putin, but I don’t hear that from the President. So I’m wondering why, in these difficult times, we’re spending all this taxpayer money.”

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“..the market is going to set the price. So if you put sanctions on at higher prices, in a way you’re just making the situation worse.”

Russian Oil Price Cap Idea ‘Ridiculous’ – Former US Treasury Secretary (RT)

Former US Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin has criticized the Group of Seven (G7) plan of capping the price of Russian oil in an interview to CNBC. The measure, which is due to be implemented early next month, is “not only not feasible, I think it’s the most ridiculous idea I’ve ever heard,” Mnuchin said. The former official said that “the market is going to set the price. So if you put sanctions on at higher prices, in a way you’re just making the situation worse.” The G7 countries, comprising the US, Canada, UK, Germany, France, Italy, and Japan, earlier agreed to set a fixed price limit on Russian oil. The measure takes effect on December 5.

While the price level is not yet known, reports indicate it will be set at around $60 per barrel. The current market price on Brent crude, the global oil benchmark, is around $86 per barrel. Under the plan, Western companies will be banned from providing certain services for shipments of Russian oil that is purchased at a price above the cap. The list of services includes insurance and facilitating payments. The mechanism, which had been pitched by Washington, is intended to limit Russia’s revenues from energy exports, which, the West claims Moscow uses to fund its military operation in Ukraine.

Moscow, meanwhile, has increased oil exports in recent months to countries outside of the West, particularly China and India, by offering discounts to secure buyers. Analysts say that in order for the price cap to have the desired effect, the G7 would have to make sure these countries join the scheme. However, Russian officials have repeatedly stated that the country will not sell oil to buyers that agree to the price cap, which may make many reluctant to participate in the mechanism. India, for instance, recently said it sees no “moral conflict” in importing Russian oil and will buy it “from wherever” to ensure the country’s energy stability.

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This puzzles me: Garland said:“Based on recent developments, including the former president’s announcement that he is a candidate for president in the next election and the sitting president’s stated intention to be a candidate as well, I have concluded that it is in the public interest to appoint a special counsel.”

See? They’re both candidates, but only one gets a special counsel. Where in his words is the logic? It’s not as if there is no reason to probe Hunter. And FTX should be probed too, but yes, that too is linked to Biden.

DOJ Appoints Special Counsel For Trump Probes, But What About Hunter? (JTN)

Powell’s words follow Garland’s appointment of Jack Smith, a former career Justice Department prosecutor and former chief prosecutor at The Hague, to serve as special counsel to oversee two ongoing criminal investigations. The first is the investigation into whether any individual, Trump included, attempted to interfere unlawfully in the transfer of presidential power or the electoral certification process in connection with the Jan. 6 Capitol riot. The second is the investigation into the documents the FBI seized from Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate in August and any obstruction of justice charges that could stem from it. Garland’s announcement came three days after Trump launched his 2024 presidential campaign.

“The Department of Justice has long recognized that in certain extraordinary cases it is in the public interest to appoint a special prosecutor to independently manage an investigation and prosecution,” said Garland. “Based on recent developments, including the former president’s announcement that he is a candidate for president in the next election and the sitting president’s stated intention to be a candidate as well, I have concluded that it is in the public interest to appoint a special counsel.” Trump blasted the appointment as the “politicization of justice” and said he “won’t partake in it” in comments to Fox News Digital. Observers were quick to similarly criticize Garland’s decision, noting a potential double standard as the Justice Department hasn’t named a special counsel to oversee its ongoing investigation into Hunter Biden.

“By appointing a special counsel to investigate his boss’s political enemy, Attorney General Merrick Garland continues to politicize and weaponize the Biden Justice Department — all while Garland ignores smoking-gun evidence of Biden’s foreign corruption,” tweeted Mike Davis, former chief counsel for nominations for the Senate Judiciary Committee. Other legal experts thought Garland’s appointment itself was fine but took issue with not doing the same for Biden. s”Appointment of a special counsel is a significant step, but Garland is well within his rights to do so,” said Geoff Shepard, a lawyer and author who served in the Nixon administration. “The disturbing thing is that he has not already done so with regard to the Hunter Biden investigation. It reeks of a double standard and gives critics plenty of reason to object.”

“The more he spoke of his honor, the faster we counted the spoons…”

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@JulieZebrak: “Fun fact: Jack Smith and Jim Trusty both worked in the Criminal Division when I was there. Jack was the head of Public Integrity Section aka PIN. Jim was the head of the Organized Crime and Gang Section. Jim now represents Trump.”

MTG Says Kevin McCarthy, House GOP Will Defund Trump Special Counsel (JTN)

Georgia Republican Rep. Marjorie Taylor Green on Friday said that current House Minority Leader and likely next House Speaker Kevin McCarthy would deny funding to the Department of Justice special counsel investigating former President Donald Trump. In a Tweet detailing the plan, Greene insisted McCarthy would invoke the Holman rule, a procedural measure by which the House may adjust appropriations legislation to reduce the salary of or fire specific government employees. They may also use it to cut specific programs. “Holman Rule. Look it up! [McCarthy] is going to put it in place,” Greene wrote. “That means no money for Garland’s politically weaponized Special Counsel. Don’t promise too many jobs! Whoops defunded.”

It was not immediately clear whether Greene was predicting such action or announcing that McCarthy had made the decision. Just the News has sought comment from Greene’s office. McCarthy’s office could not immediately be reached. Attorney General Merrick Garland announced Friday that he was appointing Jack Smith as special counsel to oversee the DOJ investigations relating the former president. “The Department of Justice has long recognized that in certain extraordinary cases it is in the public interest to appoint a special prosecutor to independently manage an investigation and prosecution,” Garland said.

“Based on recent developments, including the former president’s announcement that he is a candidate for president in the next election and the sitting president’s stated intention to be a candidate as well, I have concluded that it is in the public interest to appoint a special counsel.” McCarthy has thus far not announced any plans akin to what Greene has indicated. The California Republican this week won his party’s nomination for speaker while the party. Republicans won control of the House during the 2022 midterm elections, meaning McCarthy will likely be the one driving the lower chamber’s operations in the next congressional session.

Trump

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Game over, guys, don’t even try.

G20 Pushes Vaccine Passports For All Future International Travel (ZH)

The G20 has issued a formal decree promoting vaccine passports as preparation for any future pandemic response in its final communique. Indonesian Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin, speaking on the matter on behalf of the G20 host country, had earlier in the summit called for a “digital health certificate” using WHO standards. Sadikin advocated for that he dubbed a “digital health certificate” which shows whether a person has been “vaccinated or tested properly” so that only then “you can move around”. Watch his comments during a G20 Bali panel discussion earlier in the week… A somewhat more vaguely-worded version of these recommendations was included in the official G20 leaders’ declaration, which calls for digital COVID-19 certificates, or often simply called vaccine passports.

The section of the final communique, which is republished and available on the White House website, which deals with vaccines and the Covid-19 pandemic begins, “We recognize that the extensive COVID-19 immunization is a global public good and we will advance our effort to ensure timely, equitable and universal access to safe, affordable, quality and effective vaccines, therapeutics and diagnostics (VTDs).” While describing the need for greater collaboration among nations during any future pandemic response, it continues in this section, “We remain committed to embedding a multisectoral One Health approach and enhancing global surveillance, including genomic surveillance, in order to detect pathogens and antimicrobial resistance (AMR) that may threaten human health.”

[..] Article 24 of the final G20 declaration begins, “The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the transformation of the digital ecosystem and digital economy.” And then leads into to the following statement later in the section: “We acknowledge the importance to counter disinformation campaigns, cyber threats, online abuse, and ensuring security in connectivity infrastructure.” So as predicted by many early on in the pandemic (who were all dismissed and condemned as “conspiracy theorists”), a future proposed standardized vaccine passport will be accompanied by efforts for greater standardization and policing against ‘disinformation’ – likely to include any speech critical of the type of regimen that G20 leaders wish to enact.

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“..many people misunderstood the meaning of “peak oil” and saw it as equivalent to “running out” of oil…”

Colin Campbell: A Tribute To The Father Of The Concept Of “Peak Oil” (Ugo Bardi)

Rethinking today about Colin’s legacy, we can see that he was not always right in his assessments. One of the limits of his approach was that it was focused only on oil and gas. His models were sometimes oversimplified, and, at times, he would be too quick in disparaging new technologies that could change the picture. Perhaps his main limit was to have overemphasized the importance of the peak date as a turning point for humankind and to have believed that it could be determined by models. I know that he understood that the peak was just one point in a smooth curve, and he said that several times in public statements. But many people misunderstood the meaning of “peak oil” and saw it as equivalent to “running out” of oil. For some, it was the equivalent of the religious concept of apocalypse, and that led to accusations against ASPO of being a millenarian cult of some kind.

It should go without saying that Colin’s ideas were as far from millenarism as they could possibly have been. His approach was good, data-based science, and he was fond of quoting Keynes saying, “when I have new data, I change my mind, what do you do, sir?” (actually, Samuelson said that). Colin’s capability of dispassionately analyzing data led him to avoid the mistakes that other members of ASPO made, such as putting all their hopes on nuclear energy or refusing to accept climate science as a valid scientific field. So, even though right now the concept of “peak oil” seems to be out of fashion, good ideas are like souls. They move from one generation to another, being reborn as new incarnations if they are good.

Campbell’s ideas have that power, right now they are nearly forgotten, but waiting to reappear in a suitable body, like the spirit of the Dalai Lama. We, humans, forget things so easily, especially important things. But one day we’ll understand Campbell’s main message that what we get from the Earth may seem to be free, but it must be repaid, sooner or later. And the debt recovery agency employed by Gaia is ruthless and cannot be bribed using money.

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Cooling

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Baby chimp

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Nov 172022
 
 November 17, 2022  Posted by at 9:51 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , ,  71 Responses »


Cimabue Christ mocked c1280 (Photograph: Charles Platiau/Reuters)

 

Ukraine Admits Firing Missile Near Poland Blast Site – CNN (RT)
Zelensky Doubles Down On Poland Missile (RT)
Gen. Milley Claims He Couldn’t Reach Moscow After Poland Missile Incident (RT)
Poland Should Guard Part Of Ukrainian Airspace – General (RT)
Missile Incident Was Ukrainian ‘Provocation’ – Polish Politician (RT)
Poland Wants Russian Oil Despite EU Embargo – Kommersant (RT)
Drone Strikes Deep In Russian Territory – Governor (RT)
The G20’s Balinese Geopolitical Dance (Escobar)
Eurozone Facing Deep Recession – Economists (RT)
Xi Roasts Justin Trudeau At G20 (RT)
Did SBF Buy Puff-Piece Propaganda? (ZH)
American Attempts To Preserve Hegemony Vs The New World Order (Kortunov)
US Congress Will Continue To Oppose Jet Sale To Turkey – Rep. Malliotakis (K.)
Sperm Counts Plummeting Dramatically – Faster Than Previously Thought (EHN)
Fauci’s Pandemic Leadership Needs to Be Investigated – Dr. Scott Atlas (ET)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kuleba before denials

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lots of RT today. Seems to be the only place for relevant information on Zelensky’s -and Poland’s- attempts to start WWIII.

“It doesn’t matter to Germany whose rocket fell in Poland, in any case, Russia is to blame, because it attacked Ukraine” – Olaf Scholz

Ukraine Admits Firing Missile Near Poland Blast Site – CNN (RT)

Ukrainian military officials told their American and other Western counterparts that they attempted to intercept a Russian missile near the site of a fatal blast in Poland on Tuesday, CNN reported. While Kiev initially blamed the explosion on Russia, Western leaders have since stated that it was likely caused by an errant Ukrainian air defense projectile. Citing a US official, CNN anchor Jim Sciutto said on Wednesday that the Ukrainian military has informed its Western backers that it “attempted to intercept a Russian missile in the same timeframe and near [the] location” of a “missile strike” at the Polish village of Przewowdow a day earlier. “It’s not clear this is [the] same missile that struck Poland, but this has informed ongoing US assessment,” Sciutto added.

The apparent admission by Ukraine’s military marks a dramatic climbdown by Kiev since Tuesday, when Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky called the incident a “Russian attack on the collective security” of NATO. In a video statement, Zelensky urged the West to put Russia “in its place” in response. However, in the time since the blast, Ukraine’s Western backers have all but confirmed that the missile was fired from Ukraine. US President Joe Biden, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg and Polish President Andrzej Duda have all stated that the blast was likely caused by a Ukrainian air defense missile, with Duda opting not to call for urgent consultations under Article 4 of the NATO Treaty.

The Russian Defense Ministry reported that analysis of debris at the site of the explosion showed that it was caused by a missile from the S-300 air defense system, a Soviet-era system fielded by Ukraine. Poland is currently leading an investigation into the explosion, which killed two people. The blast occurred during an intense Russian bombardment of Ukrainian command centers and energy infrastructure. Russia has pummeled Ukraine with near-daily missile and drone strikes since October, following what Russian President Vladimir Putin called Ukrainian “terrorist attacks” on Russian territory. Ukrainian Energy Minister German Galushenko called Tuesday’s barrage the “most massive shelling of [Ukraine’s] energy system” since the beginning of the conflict in February.

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“Ukraine’s president Zelensky is pushing back against Western suggestions, including those of the US and Nato, that a stray Ukrainian missile was responsible for the deadly blast in Poland. ‘I have no doubt that it was not our rocket,’ he told reporters.”

Zelensky Doubles Down On Poland Missile (RT)

Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky continued to insist his military did not fire the missile that killed two civilians in the Polish village of Przewodow. Ukraine wanted to be included in any investigation of the incident, he told reporters in Kiev on Wednesday. “I have no doubt that it was not our missile or our missile strike,” Zelensky said, according to Ukrainian media. Noting that this is what the Ukrainian air force commander told him on Tuesday evening, he added, “It makes no sense for me not to trust them.” The Ukrainian president also said the Przewodow incident was yet another argument for NATO to impose a no-fly zone over Ukraine, something he has been asking for since February.

Zelensky was quick to blame “terrorist” Russia for what he described as an attack on NATO and the concept of collective security itself. His foreign minister Dmitry Kuleba did likewise. Neither have retracted their claims, even after Poland announced the missile that struck Przewodow was from a S-300 air defense system. “There is a high probability that it was a Ukrainian air defense missile,” Polish President Andrzej Duda said on Wednesday morning. Meanwhile, CNN quoted unnamed Ukrainian military officials as saying the missile was indeed theirs. Zelensky, however, told reporters he disagreed with phrases like “high probability” and that Ukraine “has the right” to see the evidence and data from partner countries. So far, he said, Kiev has received nothing.

“We must participate in the investigation,” Zelensky said, according to the UNIAN news agency. “I want it to be fair and if it was the use of our air defense, then I want this evidence.” While the incident in Przewodow happened amid a Russian cruise missile attack on key energy and military infrastructure targets in Ukraine, the Russian Defense Ministry swiftly noted that the debris filmed in Poland had nothing to do with any Russian weapon. Nor had anything nearby been targeted by the Russian military, Moscow added. Even the US government acknowledged the projectile that hit the Polish village was not Russian. On Wednesday, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg also said the missile had been Ukrainian and there were no indications of a Russian attack. He argued that the ultimate responsibility for the incident still lay with Moscow, however.

Candace

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Bad if he’s lying, bad if he’s not.

Gen. Milley Claims He Couldn’t Reach Moscow After Poland Missile Incident (RT)

US Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman General Mark Milley tried and failed to reach his Russian counterpart, General Valery Gerasimov, in the wake of a deadly missile incident in Poland, he revealed to journalists. “My staff was unsuccessful in getting me linked up with General Gerasimov,” he said during a joint press conference with Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin on Wednesday. The failed contact happened after a missile hit a Polish village on the border with Ukraine and killed two locals on Tuesday. It came amid a Russian barrage targeting Ukrainian military and energy infrastructure. President Vladimir Zelensky claimed that the weapon was Russian and urged NATO to invoke its collective defense provisions in response. Western nations have since assessed that the projectile was most likely a Ukrainian anti-aircraft missile that went astray. But the Ukrainian leader doubled down on his claim that it was not fired by Kiev’s forces.


During the media briefing, both US defense officials declined to comment on the difference of opinion. “We have full confidence in Poland’s ability to conduct this investigation in the proper way, and until that’s complete, again, I think it’s – it’d be premature for anybody to jump to conclusions,” Austin said. Zelensky named Ukraine’s chief of defense, General Valery Zaluzhny, as the source of his information about the projectile’s origin. Milley said he also talked to the general, but declined to say what he was told about the incident. The Russian military has denied responsibility and said images of the missile debris clearly identified it as Ukrainian. The Foreign Ministry accused Kiev of trying to gain more Western support under a false pretext and said that an impartial investigation would expose the Ukrainian “provocation”.

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In the middle of it all, Ukraine adds another call for a no fly zone. As if we forgot what that means. Trying to get NATO openly into the war.

Poland Should Guard Part Of Ukrainian Airspace – General (RT)

Polish General Roman Polko said that the country’s air defenses should assume responsibility for part of Ukraine’s territory, in the wake of a deadly missile strike on a village near the Ukraine border. Speaking to Radio ZET on Wednesday, Polko, who used to serve as the Deputy Chief of the Polish National Security Bureau, suggested that Poland should protect a “strip of airspace extending into Ukrainian territory and build air defense systems.” “We cannot allow Polish citizens to die,” he stressed, expressing hope that the incident would accelerate deliveries of defense weapons. The general went on to say that Polish authorities should ramp up defense capabilities as well as increase airspace monitoring.

“We should inform Russia that Ukraine and… the border belt will be constantly monitored by the NATO alliance and Russian combat assets will be shot down,” Polko added. He also noted that the “unprecedented attack” should prompt NATO to “finally lift restrictions” and give Ukraine long-range weapons. According to media reports, the US, Kiev’s most prominent backer, has been reluctant to send these types of arms to Ukraine, fearing it would escalate the conflict. While Germany said that, along with its NATO partners, Berlin has no plans to try and close off Ukrainian airspace, noting that such a move could trigger a direct clash between Russia and NATO forces. “Together with all our allies we agreed that we want to avoid a further escalation of this war in Ukraine,” a government spokesperson explained.

Berlin had proposed to help Poland patrol its airspace, according to Germany’s defense ministry spokesman. It comes in the aftermath of a missile strike on the village of Przewodow, close to the Ukrainian border, which killed two civilians. While Poland initially claimed that the projectile was “manufactured in Russia,” later, President Andrzej Duda noted that it was probably launched by Ukrainian air defenses. The Russian Defense Ministry denied involvement, stating that its experts had analyzed the photos from the scene and identified parts of the projectile “as elements of a missile from the S-300 air defense system used by the Air Force of Ukraine.”

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“Instead of telling “fairy tales” about the missile, the Polish president should tell Ukraine’s Vladimir Zelensky that Warsaw “will no longer put up with this behavior” by Kiev.”

Missile Incident Was Ukrainian ‘Provocation’ – Polish Politician (RT)

Poland should rethink its position towards the conflict in Ukraine after a “provocation” on the part of Kiev that cost two villagers their lives, a former city councilman in Lublin said on Wednesday. Jaroslaw Pakula, whose term ended four days before the incident, said the missile that struck Przewodow was obviously Ukrainian and that the government in Warsaw needed to send a message to Kiev instead of telling “fairy tales” to its citizens. “Of course, this is a Ukrainian rocket. Of course, this is a provocation on the part of the Ukrainian authorities,” Pakula posted on his Facebook page. “The rocket could not be fired 100km in the opposite direction by mistake.” The purpose of the provocation was to scare the EU and get civil society support for sending even more weapons to Ukraine, Pakula added.

Instead of telling “fairy tales” about the missile, the Polish president should tell Ukraine’s Vladimir Zelensky that Warsaw “will no longer put up with this behavior” by Kiev. “I urge you to rethink Poland’s position [regarding] this war in the event that the red line is crossed again!” Pakula concluded. Pakula’s Facebook page still has a Ukrainian flag over his portrait photo, and lists him as chairman of the city council of Lublin, the seat of the region where Przewodow is located. The official city website, however, notes that he was no longer in office as of November 11. Zelensky was quick to accuse Russia of attacking Poland and the entire NATO after a missile exploded in Przewodow on Tuesday afternoon, killing two people.

The government in Kiev said the incident showed the need for NATO to “close the sky” over Ukraine, as they have demanded since February. While Zelensky continues to insist the missile was Russian, Warsaw and Moscow have both identified it as a S-300 air defense missile, with Poland calling it “Russian-made” and Russia pointing out it was in Ukrainian service. The US and NATO have also described the missile as an air defense rocket that strayed, seeking to minimize the incident while also arguing that Russia was the ultimate culprit for bombing Ukraine in the first place. The Russian military has pointed out that Tuesday’s missile strikes on Ukrainian military and energy infrastructure targets came nowhere close to the Polish border.

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And despite accusing Russia of attacking it.

Poland Wants Russian Oil Despite EU Embargo – Kommersant (RT)

Poland plans to continue buying Russian oil in 2023 via the “Druzhba” (Friendship) pipeline, despite vows from the country’s authorities to abandon imports from the sanctioned country, the daily Kommersant reported on Wednesday. Poland’s major oil refiner and retailer Orlen has sent a bid to Russia’s oil and gas transporting company Transneft to receive three million tons of oil through the Druzhba pipeline in 2023, the outlet reported, citing a source in the Polish oil industry. Transneft has confirmed the order without specifying which companies it came from and the requested volumes. On December 5, an EU embargo on Russian crude oil and petroleum products comes into force.

And even though it will not be applied to deliveries via the Druzhba pipeline, Germany and Poland, which receive oil through the northern branch of the pipeline, have officially announced that they will voluntarily give up Russian oil from the beginning of 2023. Kommersant has pointed out that the Polish oil company has active long-term contracts with Transneft and reminded readers that the country’s foreign minister Zbigniew Rau had said on November 14 that Orlen risks paying a penalty in case of a unilateral withdrawal from the agreement. At the moment, Orlen has stopped buying Russian oil on the spot market but continues to receive it under long-term contracts with Tatneft (2.4 million tons per year until 2024) and Rosneft (3.6 million tons per year), the outlet reports.

The contract with Rosneft was renewed for two years in March 2021 and, apparently, will still be valid in January and February 2023. Commenting on the issue, Transneft vice-president Sergey Andronov said that on top of the bids from the company’s clients, which use the southern leg of the Druzhba pipeline, there are “bids from Polish consumers for deliveries through Belarus in 2023.” Andronov added that he hoped that German buyers of Russian crude would be “equally reasonable about securing stable oil supplies” from Russia. Druzhba is one of the longest pipeline networks in the world and carries crude some 4,000 kilometers from the eastern part of European Russia to refineries in the Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia.

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Reeks a bit of Nordstream.

Drone Strikes Deep In Russian Territory – Governor (RT)

A drone has struck an oil terminal in Russia’s Oryol Region, some 200km (124 miles) from the Ukrainian border, Governor Andrey Klychkov said. “Around 4am today, an apparent drone struck an oil terminal in the village of Stalnoy Kon,” he wrote on his Telegram channel on Wednesday. “Nobody was hurt. Emergency services are working on site,” Klychkov added. Although the region does not share a border with Ukraine, it borders the Russian regions of Kursk and Bryansk where officials reported multiple Ukrainian attacks after Russia launched its military operation in the neighboring state on February 24.


News outlet Baza reported that the drone hit an upper section of a cylindrical steel tank, “a quarter” of which was filled with oil. The outlet added that there were no leaks or fires. According to news outlet Mash, the terminal is part of the Druzhba (Friendship) pipeline network, which delivers Russian oil to Europe. Oryol Region, together with several neighboring regions, was placed on a state of heightened alert last month.

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“The Americans suddenly interested in talking, and Macron and Scholz approaching Lavrov, point to the heart of the matter: the EU and the UK may not survive next winter, 2023-2024, without Gazprom.”

The G20’s Balinese Geopolitical Dance (Escobar)

The fog thickened because on the backdrop of the G20, the US and Russia were talking in Ankara, represented by CIA director William Burns and SVR (Foreign Intel) director Sergei Naryshkin. No one knows what exactly was being negotiated. A ceasefire is only one among possible scenarios. And yet heated rhetoric from NATO in Brussels to Kiev suggests escalation prevailing over some sort of reconciliation. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov was adamant; de facto and de jure, Ukraine can’t and does not want to negotiate. So the Special Military Operation (SMO) will continue. NATO is training fresh units. Next possible targets are the Zaporizhzhya nuclear power plant and the left bank of the Dnieper – or even more pressure in the north of Lugansk.

For their part, Russian military channels advance the possibility of a winter offensive on Nikolaev: only 30 km away from Russian positions. Serious Russian military analysts know what serious Pentagon analysts must also know: Russia used at best only 10% of its military potential so far. No regular forces; most of them are DPR and LPR militias, Wagner commandos, Kadyrov’s Chechens and volunteers. The Americans suddenly interested in talking, and Macron and Scholz approaching Lavrov, point to the heart of the matter: the EU and the UK may not survive next winter, 2023-2024, without Gazprom. The IEA has calculated that the overall deficit by then will approach 30 billion cubic meters. And that presupposes “ideal” circumstances this coming winter: mostly warm; China still under lockdowns; much lower gas consumption in Europe; even increased production (from Norway?)

The IEA‘s models are working with two or three waves of price increases in the next 12 months. EU budgets are already on red alert – compensating the losses caused by the current energy suicide. By the end of 2023, that may reach 1 trillion euros. Any additional, unpredictable costs throughout 2023 mean that the EU economy will completely collapse: industry shutdown across the spectrum, euro in free fall, rise of inflation, debt corroding every latitude from the Club Med nations to France and Germany. Dominatrix Ursula von der Leyen, leading the European Commission (EC), of course should be discussing all that – in the interests of EU nations – with global players in Bali. Instead her only agenda, once again, was demonization of Russia. No niskala here; just tawdry cognitive dissonance.

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2023-24.

Eurozone Facing Deep Recession – Economists (RT)

The 19 countries that use the euro are expected to plunge into a much deeper recession in the coming months than earlier predicted, CNBC reported on Wednesday, citing economists. According to the report, the euro area has been under “significant pressure” due to a combination of sanctions against Russia, an abrupt end to Russian gas imports, and the need to provide financial support to households and firms struggling with the energy crisis. CNBC cited data from the European Commission showing that consumer confidence across the Eurozone plunged to a record low in September. It has improved slightly since then, but households still fear for the future and their financial positions, the report says.

“Consumer confidence has plunged so badly that the recession will likely not be shallow,” Holger Schmieding, chief economist at Berenberg Bank, told the news network. Preliminary growth estimates for the region suggest a slowdown in the third quarter from the previous three-month period – from 0.8% growth to 0.2%. According to Spyros Andreopoulos, a senior European economist at BNP Paribas, “It will be deeper than certainly what the ECB [European Central Bank] council expects.” Earlier this month, ECB President Christine Lagarde indicated that “the risk of recession has increased.” Andreopoulos told CNBC that he sees a risk the recession might drag into the second quarter of 2023.

Economists agree that even if the Eurozone emerges from a recession in the first quarter of next year, the subsequent months will still be challenging. s“I expect the recovery to be slow,” chief European economist at UniCredit, Marco Valli, told the network, citing higher interest rates as one of the main factors preventing a faster recovery. When asked if it was going to be an easy year for the euro area, Valli said: “No, absolutely not.”

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sundance: “If you have not watched this video, you really should. Justin from Canada leaked the content of a private bilateral conversation with Chinese Chairman Xi Jinping to the media. Chairman Xi was not happy with the breach of diplomatic protocol. What makes this video remarkable is the purposeful decision by Chairman Xi to confront Justin from Canada in front of a western audience. Xi never speaks directly in public and is always aware of cameras. The Chinese Chairman almost always goes through spokespeople to relay his public communication, reserving his voice for controlled and disciplined conversation with national leaders. However, not this time. Chairman Xi dresses down Justin from Canada publicly, in view of cameras and microphones. Watch, and stay with it to the end when Justin from Canada awkwardly looks for somewhere to hide. It’s quite funny.”

Xi Roasts Justin Trudeau At G20 (RT)

Chinese President Xi Jinping has publicly dressed down Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for leaking the content of their meeting to the media. Canadian reporters captured the exchange on video during the G20 summit in Bali, Indonesia on Wednesday. Barely a minute long, the exchange opens with Xi, speaking through a translator, telling Trudeau that “everything we discussed has been leaked to the papers.” “That is not appropriate. And that’s not the way the conversation was conducted,” Xi added. “If there was sincerity on your part…” “In Canada we believe in free and open and frank dialogue, and that is what we’ll continue to have,” Trudeau replied, speaking over the translator still trying to finish relaying Xi’s words. “We’ll continue to look to work constructively together but there will be things we will disagree on,” the Canadian leader added.


“Let’s create the conditions [for that] first,” replied Xi, offering Trudeau a handshake. While the Chinese leader smiled and moved on, the Canadian PM walked away from the camera, by himself. What Reuters described as “a rare display of public annoyance” by Xi follows media reports about the contents of his meeting with Trudeau on Tuesday. In the course of the ten-minute meeting, Trudeau raised “serious concerns” about China’s “interference activities” in Canada, ranging from industrial espionage to meddling in the 2019 federal election, a “government source” told AFP. According to the same source, they also discussed the situation in Ukraine, North Korea, and the upcoming biodiversity conference in December, which Beijing and Ottawa are co-hosting.

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How can you write about him without mentioning the Ukraine-FTX-Democrats connection?

Did SBF Buy Puff-Piece Propaganda? (ZH)

As FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried faces extradition to the USA following his fund’s commingled asset implosion, one might be a bit confused about the gravity of the situation given recent press coverage. For example, the NY Times on Monday published a cowering puff-piece which mentioned exactly none of the major accusations against the well-connected Democrat mega-donor. Months before his firm imploded, Vox penned a slobbering review of SBF’s “Effective Altruism” program, painting him as a benevolent crime-fighter in his efforts to help ensure Joe Biden won the 2020 US election. But his motivations aren’t those of an ordinary Democratic donor — Bankman-Fried told Goldstein that fighting Trump was less about promoting Democrats than ensuring “sane governance” in the US, which could have “massive, massive, ripple effects on what the future looks like.” -Vox

Fast forward to Tuesday, when Vox proclaimed that SBF’s support of Democratic candidates to the tune of $40 million, second only to George Soros, is “massively overstated” and essentially no big deal. And what do we have here? SBF gave millions to corporate media outlets according to Tablet, and noted by @balajis, who suggests that it may have been done with “stolen customer funds.” Over the past two years, Bankman-Fried cultivated the media lavishly, if not carefully. Drawing on what then seemed like an unlimited pool of cash, SBF (as we’ll call the mythologized version of the real person) dispersed investments, advertising dollars, sponsorships, and donations to key news outlets—including ProPublica, Vox, Semafor, and The Intercept—with extraordinary effectiveness. -Tablet

And while some of said outlets (Semafor, and The Intercept for example) covered FTX without obvious bias, recent pieces from Vox suggest the investment has paid off in spades. On Wednesday, Vox must have realized how dumb they looked – leading to Vox’s Dylan Matthews (who oddly took the “Vox” reference out of his Twitter bio earlier today) dumping what appears to be incriminating texts with another Vox journo. And while the NY Times wasn’t on the list of outlets that received money, perhaps SBF’s deep-rooted establishment connections have something to do with it.

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“While US officials use the “politically correct” rhetoric of multipolarity and multilateralism, the Biden administration is determined to restore a unipolar world..”

American Attempts To Preserve Hegemony Vs The New World Order (Kortunov)

NATO was unexpectedly enriched by two promising members, and the American military-industrial complex entered very attractive new markets not only in Europe but also in other parts of the world. Unprecedented export opportunities have also opened up for US energy companies, which are increasing the supply of their expensive liquefied natural gas to Europe as an alternative to the cheap Russian pipeline variety. Among other things, the current crisis has shown that the intellectual and psychological inertia of the old unipolar world is far from being overcome and continues to actively influence the world’s politics and economics. The surprising unanimity shown by the countries of the European Union in their willingness to reject any form of “strategic autonomy” from the US makes one wonder how serious the desire for this very autonomy was in the first place.

But the recurrence of systemic unipolarity is not unique to the West. For example, the threat of secondary sanctions by the US has in many cases proved to be a decisive factor in determining the opportunities and constraints for non-Western countries to develop economic and other cooperation with Moscow. Under US pressure, Turkey decided to refuse to service Russian Mir payment cards, and China’s Huawei was forced to begin winding down its activities in Russia. The new US National Security Strategy recently signed by Biden is steeped in outright restorationist pathos. The document speaks of the indispensability of American leadership, the unchanging task of “containing” China and Russia, the promotion of liberal values around the world, etc.

While US officials use the “politically correct” rhetoric of multipolarity and multilateralism, the Biden administration is determined to restore a unipolar world, exactly as it existed in the 1990s. To quote a well-known aphorism from the days of the Bourbon restoration to the French throne after the Napoleonic wars, one can state that Washington strategists “have learned nothing and forgotten nothing.” Which is not surprising when you consider what age group Biden, Nancy Pelosi and Donald Trump belong to.

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“We are always concerned when we really don’t know what Erdogan may say or do…”

US Congress Will Continue To Oppose Jet Sale To Turkey – Rep. Malliotakis (K.)

US representative Nicole Malliotakis appeared confident on Wednesday that both the Senate and Congress will ultimately uphold a provision banning the sale of F-16s to Turkey without a firm commitment that the fighter jets will not be used against America’s allies. “We feel that we are in a good place and we are going to continue to advocate for the protection of our allies,” Malliotakis told state broadcaster ERT in Washington, after signing a letter along with another 21 representatives urging US lawmakers to uphold the provision. Despite the fact that the provision was dropped by the Senate in its version of the defense spending bill last month, getting the amendment passed in the first place “played a very strong role and also sent a very strong message to the Administration that there is bipartisan opposition in both the House and the Senate,” Malliotakis, a Republican, said.

“We’re working with Senator Menendez as the chair of foreign affairs and I’ve been working with [Michael] McCaul, who I think might be the next chair of foreign affairs in the House, to ensure that there is a not a sign-off on such as sale,” she added, referring to Senator Bob Menendez, one of the original authors of the amendment. Asked whether support for the provision would continue should the Republican party gain control of the House, Malliotakis said that “a majority of the members of the House still oppose [the sale].” “When we had that amendment come to the floor, we were able to get the Republican votes, and they were the ones that actually passed the bill,” she said.

“We are always concerned when we really don’t know what Erdogan may say or do. He has been acting aggressively and his rhetoric has been disturbing, but that’s why we need members of Congress, we need the Administration to reaffirm its support for our allies in the region,” Malliotakis told ERT.

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“..a decline in sperm count in North America, Europe, Australia and parts of Asia of 28.5% between 1973 and 2011..”

“..average global sperm count in 2018 was 49 million per milliliter of semen. When a man’s sperm count drops below about 45 million per milliliter, his ability to cause a pregnancy starts dropping dramatically..”

Sperm Counts Plummeting Dramatically – Faster Than Previously Thought (EHN)

For years, scientists across the world have gathered evidence showing declines in sperm quality. Now, new research compiling the results of those studies has found that sperm count has dropped dramatically around the world, and the rate of decline is accelerating.

In a new analysis, researchers at Mount Sinai Medical Center, the University of Copenhagen, and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, among others, found that sperm count globally dropped by more than half between 1973 and 2018, and that the decline is accelerating: Since 1972, sperm count has dropped by about 1% each year. Since 2000, the annual decrease has been, on average, more than 2.6%. The findings raise concerns that an increasing number of people will need assistance to reproduce, as well as concerns about the overall health of human society, since low sperm count is linked to higher rates of some diseases. And while scientists are still trying to tease out the reasons for the drop, chemical exposures, especially to pesticides, are a likely factor — and climate change may even play a role. Researchers are calling for urgent action to bolster more research into sperm count, determine the causes of the decline, and prevent further deterioration of male reproductive health. “We have clear evidence that there is a crisis in male reproduction,” Hagai Levine, lead author on the study and an epidemiologist at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, told EHN.

The study builds on the team’s previous research, which showed a decline in sperm count in North America, Europe, Australia and parts of Asia of 28.5% between 1973 and 2011. Adding data from 38 studies to the new analysis has made the case for sperm decline stronger, Shanna Swan, an author on the paper and a leading reproductive epidemiologist at Mount Sinai, told EHN. “It’s really alarming,” said Swan, who is also an adjunct scientist with Environmental Health Sciences, which publishes EHN.org. Swan authored the book Count Down: How Our Modern World Is Threatening Sperm Counts, Altering Male and Female Reproductive Development, and Imperiling the Future of the Human Race. The research found that the average global sperm count in 2018 was 49 million per milliliter of semen. When a man’s sperm count drops below about 45 million per milliliter, his ability to cause a pregnancy starts dropping dramatically, said Swan.

She said the results could mean that in the coming decades, large swaths of the global population of men could be subfertile or infertile, or could require assisted reproduction techniques, like in vitro fertilization, or IVF, hormone treatment, or a technique called intracytoplasmic sperm injection, in which sperm are directly injected into an egg. In addition to the drop in average sperm count, Levine said it was surprising that the rate of decline was accelerating, rather than slowing down. “Is there a tipping point, that once you cross, you get an even worse situation?” he said. “That’s something to really pay attention to.”

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Well, they got the House now… Let’s go!

Fauci’s Pandemic Leadership Needs to Be Investigated – Dr. Scott Atlas (ET)

Former White House COVID-19 adviser Dr. Scott Atlas sees multiple reasons for an investigation into Dr. Anthony Fauci, the outgoing director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID). Such a probe has been discussed as Republicans inch closer to a House majority that would grant them subpoena powers. Some Republican lawmakers have accused Fauci of playing a role in misleading the public about the origins of COVID-19 and supporting pandemic mandates they describe as draconian. While Atlas, a vocal critic of the NIAID head, is “very skeptical” that an investigation like this could get away from politics or the perception of it being political, he thinks it’s warranted. Fauci’s changing stance on certain COVID-19 policies needs to be put under the spotlight, Atlas recently said on EpochTV’s “Newsmakers.”

“The real, clear public airing of exactly what happened needs to be done,” said Atlas, a senior fellow in health care policy at the Hoover Institution and contributor to The Epoch Times. “I personally am very skeptical that a political investigation, no matter who does it, is going to be done without politics, or if it’s going to be perceived as nonpolitical. I don’t trust people in government at all. They don’t deserve to be trusted, to be objective. “What was the motivation to flip flop multiple times with policy?” His question was referring to Fauci’s changing stance on pandemic school closures that drew criticism in late 2020.

He further questioned if there had been any “cover-up” of funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Fauci’s division, citing the awards to the Wuhan Institute of Virology through the New York nonprofit EcoHealth Alliance as an example. EcoHealth Alliance, which continues to receive millions of dollars in grants from the NIH, was subjected to scrutiny by multiple federal agencies over its partnership with the Wuhan lab. The Office of Investigations of the Department of Health and Human Services in late 2020 briefly opened a probe over alleged “major fraud against the United States.” The probe was closed in January 2021, according to internal documents, which had the reasons for the closure redacted. The allegation states that “the COVID-19 virus was generated in … China with the assistance of an NIH Grant.”

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Schwab Bali

 

 

 

 

Wray

 

 

 

 

Good morning bear

 

 

Deep Field: The Impossible Magnitude of our Universe

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Nov 142022
 
 November 14, 2022  Posted by at 9:54 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  47 Responses »


Rembrandt van Rijn Let the little children come to me 1627-28

 

The Role Of “Useful Idiots” In Modern PSYOPS (Saker)
G20 Host Urges West To Soften Anti-Russia Rhetoric – Politico (RT)
SBF’s Disgrace Awkward For Gary Gensler And The Democrats (Fortune)
Ukraine Invested In Top Dem Donor’s Crypto Company FTX (PM)
America’s Neo-Nazi Bedfellows In Ukraine Latest In a Long Line (Tony Cox)
The Road to Totalitarianism -Revisited- (CJ Hopkins)
White House Launches ‘Climate Gender Equity Fund’ (RT)
The ‘Garden Vs Jungle’ Worldview Is Not Only Racist, It’s Delusional (Hryce)
Washington Attempts to Bully India into Cutting Ties with Russia (NC)
IMF Says Global Economic Outlook Getting ‘Gloomier’ (Az.)
German Retailers Face Nightmare Before Christmas (RT)
Twitter Starts Massive Reductions In Contractors (RT)
US Senator Threatens Elon Musk (RT)
COVID-19 Mortality in England ‘Extremely Rare’ Among Under-20s (ET)

 

 

 

 

A Freeze in the Conflict?

 

 

 

 

Chappelle

 

 

Footprint

 

 

 

 

“doubleplusgoodshiteaters”

The Role Of “Useful Idiots” In Modern PSYOPS (Saker)

The second thing I need to address is what I believe is an analytical mistake by Bernhard on Moon of Alabama. He wrote that “This move is operationally sound” and yet he added “Strategically the move is bad“. We could wonder how a move could be operationally sound but strategically bad, but let’s not even go there. Bernhard’s argument is that “It closes for now the possibility of moving into Nikolaev (Mykolaiv) and further towards Odessa“. The problem here is that when we look at a map of the region we realize something very important: there are plenty of streams and rivers which flow north to south and which flow into the Black Sea. So any move along the coastline would imply having to get across quite a few river. Is this possible? Yes, absolutely.

But is that the best option? I am not so sure at all. I will simply say that this is the option the Ukronazis and NATO have been preparing for. Another option might be to move not West but North and then turn West to basically take all the NATO defenses around the Black Sea coastline from behind. Did I mention that there is now a joint Russian-Belarussian force deployed in Belarus which seems to worry NATO a lot and which could be used to pin down NATO forces near and north of Kiev. Is that what the Russians are planning? I don’t know. All I know is that it is wrong to assume that the only way to get to Odessa is by fighting along the coastline. Last, but not least, there is the (inevitable) rumor of a deal having been made between Putin and… … huh… well… somebody in the West (who? Brandon? Sunak? Macron?).


Now that is pure, unadulterated bullshit which only true doubleplusgoodshiteaters could swallow (though clickbaiters will use it to get their clicks and visibility!). Russia and the West have been locked into an existential war for survival since AT LEAST 2013 and we are very close to a possible nuclear war, but some folks still think that Putin works for the US, the WEF, Klaus Schwab, Bibi Netanuyahu. etc. etc. etc. My position on that is simple: anybody seriously believing this crap is not worth talking to, you would have better success arguing with a door nob. I sure won’t bother with them. I would also note that IF a real behind-the-scenes deal was made, the chances of Putin finalizing that deal with Western leaders at the G20 would be a perfect opportunity to finalize a deal. Yet, in reality, Putin is not even going to attend. Reach your own conclusions.

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German PM Scholz says he wishes Putin were in Bali, so the west can tell him what they think of him.

Scholz is fully blind to the fact that the west is a minority.

G20 Host Urges West To Soften Anti-Russia Rhetoric – Politico (RT)

G20 Summit host Indonesia is reportedly seeking to prevent the gathering of world leaders from becoming a Russia-bashing fest, urging Western politicians to temper their criticism of Moscow so all members can be brought on board with a communique at the end of the event. Indonesian President Joko Widodo and other officials in his government have asked Western leaders to make concessions on the extent of their anti-Russia rhetoric over the Ukraine crisis, Politico reported on Sunday, citing three unidentified diplomats with knowledge of the talks. The two-day summit will begin on Tuesday in Bali, and Widodo hopes to find enough common ground that all G20 members, including Russia and China, can agree to a group declaration.

Widodo also aims to prevent the group from following in the footsteps of the G8, which kicked out Moscow and became the G7 after Crimea voted to become part of Russia in 2014. A G7 statement earlier this month condemned Russia for its “war of aggression” against Ukraine and called for all Russian forces to be withdrawn from the former Soviet republic. The group also accused Russia of war crimes in Ukraine and blasted the Kremlin for “irresponsible nuclear rhetoric.” Such a statement wouldn’t likely find consensus in Bali, where Russia will be represented by Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov. Several other G20 members, including China, India, Brazil and Saudi Arabia, would be reluctant, at the least, to sign on to a communique rebuking Russia. Politico said one possibility would be to issue a more general joint statement calling for “upholding international law.”


“Obviously we can’t be as tough as we do it in G7 when you need the Russians, Chinese and Saudis to agree,” a Western diplomat told the media outlet. “The question is how much we need to delete.” The US, Canada, Japan, Australia and major European countries are among the G20 members that Indonesian officials are targeting with their pleas for softer rhetoric. Widodo also hopes to avoid controversy over a group photo, like those typically taken at G20 meetings to show solidarity, given that some members might be reticent to line up in the same image with Lavrov. Last month, before Moscow announced that President Vladimir Putin wouldn’t attend the summit, Politico reported that White House officials were taking steps to ensure that Biden wouldn’t cross paths with the Russian leader.

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“@GaryGensler runs to the media while reports to my office allege he was helping SBF and FTX work on legal loopholes to obtain a regulatory monopoly.”

SBF’s Disgrace Awkward For Gary Gensler And The Democrats (Fortune)

Gary Gensler blew it again. After his agency failed to warn investors about Terra and Celsius—whose collapses this spring sparked a trillion-dollar investor wipeout—the Securities and Exchange Commission chair allowed an even bigger debacle to unfold right under his nose. I’m talking, of course, about the revelation this week that the $30 billion FTX empire was a house of cards and that its golden boy founder, Sam Bankman-Fried, is the crypto equivalent of Theranos’s Elizabeth Holmes. To be fair, Gensler was not the only one suckered by SBF. Nearly everyone else—myself included—fell for the narrative that SBF, with his cute afro and aw-shucks demeanor, was exactly the savior crypto needed to shake off its dodgy reputation and emerge as part of the mainstream financial system.

The problem is that cop-on-the-beat Gensler not only failed to spot the crime—he appeared set to go along with a legislative strategy that would have given SBF a regulatory moat and made him king of the U.S. crypto market. According to Washington insiders I spoke with, the reason behind SBF’s decision this summer to obtain control over BlockFi was to benefit from the troubled crypto lender’s recent settlement with the SEC—basically extending the amnesty BlockFi had received to FTX. Meanwhile, FTX’s recent tie-up with securities exchange IEX (of Flash Boys fame) would also help SBF’s empire come under the U.S. regulatory umbrella. All of this would clear FTX to have the U.S. market to itself as the company lobbied for legislation that could have torpedoed competitors like Binance as well as the emerging DeFi sector.


This appears to be what prominent House member Tom Emmer (R-Minn.) was referring to when he tweeted on Thursday that “@GaryGensler runs to the media while reports to my office allege he was helping SBF and FTX work on legal loopholes to obtain a regulatory monopoly.” Gensler, a former campaign finance chair for Hillary Clinton, is of course not the only prominent Democrat who may have been willing to flex his influence on behalf of FTX. SBF, you may recall, was one of the biggest donors to President Joe Biden, while his parents—both Stanford law professors—have ties to the party. His mother, Barbara Fried, leads a group called Mind the Gap that helps raise Silicon Valley cash for Democrats, while his father, Joseph Bankman, drafted tax legislation for the powerful Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass). It’s not a stretch to imagine SBF sought to exploit these political ties to his benefit.

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“It’s fascinating to see that the majority of the net equity in the Alameda business is actually FTX’s own centrally controlled and printed-out-of-thin-air token..”

Ukraine Invested In Top Dem Donor’s Crypto Company FTX (PM)

Roughly $5 billion was withdrawn from FTX on Sunday. The trouble began for FTX last week when rival crypto company Binance said they were selling off their holdings of FTT, which is the proprietary coin of FTX. After Binance said that, FTX was in financial trouble, and essentially sought a bailout from other firms, Binance among them. The New York Post reports that FTX’s implosion followed revelations “that co-founder Sam Bankman-Fried had been funneling money to a sister trading company run by his girlfriend.” That company, Alameda Research, is run by Bankman-Fried’s girlfriend, Caroline Ellison, and is also based in the Bahamas. Binance announced that they would buy the company, then pulled out of the deal, saying that after some due diligence, they decided it would not be a good investment.

“As a result of corporate due diligence, as well as the latest news reports regarding mishandled customer funds and alleged US agency investigations, we have decided that we will not pursue the potential acquisition of http://FTX.com,” Binance said on Twitter. “In the beginning, our hope was to be able to support FTX’s customers to provide liquidity, but the issues are beyond our control or ability to help. Every time a major player in an industry fails, retail consumers will suffer. We have seen over the last several years that the crypto ecosystem is becoming more resilient and we believe in time that outliers that misuse user funds will be weeded out by the free market. As regulatory frameworks are developed and as the industry continues to evolve toward greater decentralization, the ecosystem will grow stronger,” Binance said.


Part of the issue for Binance is that Alameda Research, helmed by Bankman-Fried’s girlfriend, holds a great deal of their assets in FTT, and FTX had invested their customers’ funds into Alameda through a “back door,” without oversight. “Late on Friday evening, it has since been confirmed that a total of around $10 billion was moved from FTX to Alameda Research by FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF),” Cryptoslate reported. Bitcoin Archive tweeted this out, which Cryptoslate noted was “used to move assets in the billions of dollars without triggering alerts to staff and external auditors.” “It’s fascinating to see that the majority of the net equity in the Alameda business is actually FTX’s own centrally controlled and printed-out-of-thin-air token,” said Cory Klippsten, CEO of investment platform Swan Bitcoin.

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Must Read?! “Dulles went so far as to send a rescue team to save Wolff when the general’s villa was surrounded by Italian partisans.”

America’s Neo-Nazi Bedfellows In Ukraine Latest In a Long Line (Tony Cox)

Soviet leader Joseph Stalin was furious when he found out in March 1945 that his supposed World War II ally, Washington, was negotiating with the German Nazis behind his back. In fact, by the accounts of some historians, American spy and future CIA director Allen Dulles essentially kicked off the Cold War when he held secret talks with Waffen SS General Karl Wolff as Hitler’s regime was nearing its collapse. Stalin, US President Franklin Roosevelt, and UK Prime Minister Winston Churchill had agreed that they would accept only unconditional surrender from the Nazis because of the Hitler regime’s monstrous crimes. When the Dulles-Wolff talks came to light, FDR repeatedly and falsely told Stalin that no one was negotiating with the Germans. The Georgian generalissimo was unconvinced and suspected that his Western allies were maneuvering to contain the USSR and occupy territory that might otherwise fall to the Red Army.

The Soviets had reason to be suspicious. Some in Washington, including Dulles, viewed the USSR as America’s biggest long-term threat even as the countries worked together to defeat Germany. As confirmed by documents that were finally declassified more than half a century later, US intelligence agencies were soon to hire upward of 1,000 Nazis as Cold War spies. By then, America already had a history of finding common cause against Moscow with unseemly allies. As the Soviets remembered well, the US had invaded Russia in 1918 in a failed effort to help overthrow the Bolshevik government. At the time, Washington was allied with White Army counter-revolutionaries, some of whom had a nasty taste for pogroms and other murderous atrocities.

Even as then-President Woodrow Wilson moralized to world leaders about self-determination and opposing external aggression – principles that would be applied only according to US self-interest in the generations ahead – he sent American forces to intervene in the Russian Civil War. He was to set a precedent that has continued to play out to this day, from Germany to Central Asia to the current Ukraine crisis. The pattern was clear: Portray America as the virtuous champion of freedom while working with anyone — however abhorrent their deeds and views might be — as long as they share Washington’s burning desire to hurt Russia.

In 1945, Dulles got his way with Wolff, formerly Heinrich Himmler’s right-hand man. The general and his group of SS officers, which was called the Black Order, agreed to surrender northern Italy to Allied forces. The deal didn’t avail much for the US, coming just six days before the full German surrender, and it sowed seeds of distrust with the Soviets and other allies. For his part, Wolff was spared the gallows, as the Nuremberg prosecutors mysteriously took him off their list of major war criminals and treated him as a “witness” to Nazi atrocities, rather than a perpetrator, according to historians. Dulles went so far as to send a rescue team to save Wolff when the general’s villa was surrounded by Italian partisans.

[..] Obama’s administration offered no condemnation when at least 48 people were killed and hundreds injured in an attack on anti-Euromaidan protestors in Odessa. Most of the victims were burned to death by a far-right mob when they tried to take shelter in the city’s union hall. Others were shot or beaten when they tried to escape the burning building. Ukraine’s fascist Right Sector group reacted by celebrating the massacre as “yet another bright page in our fatherland’s history.” Ukrainian MP Lesya Orobets, who had been praised by US media outlet Daily Beast as a “rising star” of the anti-Yanukovych opposition, also celebrated the killings, reportedly calling the Odessa incident a “liquidation” of pro-Russia enemies.

To this day, the perpetrators of the massacre haven’t been held accountable. The Council of Europe concluded in November 2020 that the Kiev government had failed to properly investigate and prosecute those responsible for the killings. Ukraine has continued to embrace its World War II Nazi collaborators, including Stepan Bandera, who is venerated in public marches. Two years after the coup, one of the main avenues in Kiev was renamed Stepan Bandera Street. Lviv also boasts a Stepan Bandera Street. In the eyes of Ukraine’s neo-Nazis, one of Yanukovich’s sins was his decision to revoke an earlier government declaration honoring Bandera as an official “Hero of Ukraine.”

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“Everything is back to normal, right? Wrong. Everything is not back to normal. Everything is absolutely New Normal.”

The Road to Totalitarianism -Revisited- (CJ Hopkins)

It feels like it’s finally over, doesn’t it, the whole “apocalyptic pandemic” thing? I mean, really, really over this time. Not like all those other times when you thought it was over, but it wasn’t over, and was like the end of those Alien movies, where it seems like Ridley has finally escaped, but the alien is hiding out in the shuttle, or the escape pod, or Ridley’s intestinal tract. But this time doesn’t feel like that. This time it feels like it’s really, really over. Go out and take a look around. Hardly anyone is wearing masks anymore (except where masks are mandatory) or being coerced into submitting to “vaccinations” (except where “vaccination” is mandatory), and the hordes of hate-drunk New Normal fanatics who demanded that “the Unvaccinated” be segregated, censored, fired from their jobs, and otherwise demonized and persecuted, have all fallen silent (except for those who haven’t).


Everything is back to normal, right? Wrong. Everything is not back to normal. Everything is absolutely New Normal. What is over is the “shock-and-awe” phase, which was never meant to go on forever. It was always only meant to get us here. Where, you’re probably asking, is “here”? “Here” is a place where the new official ideology has been firmly established as our new “reality,” woven into the fabric of normal everyday life. No, not everywhere, just everywhere that matters. (Do you really think the global-capitalist ruling classes care what people in Lakeland, Florida, Elk River, Idaho, or some village in Sicily believe about “reality”?) Yes, most government restrictions have been lifted, mainly because they are no longer necessary, but in centers of power throughout the West, in political, corporate, and cultural spheres, in academia, the mainstream media, and so on, the New Normal has become “reality,” or, in other words, “just the way it is,” which is the ultimate goal of every ideology.

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Sometimes I don’t recognize the world I live in.

WTF is “gender-responsive climate action?”

White House Launches ‘Climate Gender Equity Fund’ (RT)

US President Joe Biden has announced the launch of a Climate Gender Equity Fund to promote female “climate leaders.” He unveiled the new initiative at the United Nations COP 27 conference on Friday. A partnership between online retail company Amazon and government agency USAID, the fund will “leverage private sector contributions to provide women climate leaders with technical skills, networks and capital to develop and scale climate solutions,” the White House noted in a statement. To help solve climate change, according to Amazon worldwide sustainability vice president Kara Hurst, “we must address the gender inequalities that persist in climate finance, and ensure female entrepreneurs have an equal seat at the table and access to the funding, networks and technical support they need to scale climate solutions.”

Outlining the gravity of gender inequity in the climate space, Amazon revealed that “female-founded companies typically receive a fraction of total venture capital, and that percentage fell during the pandemic.” The online shopping giant, which saw its profits skyrocket during the pandemic, promised to supply an additional $50 million from its Climate Pledge Fund for investments in women-founded and -led climate technology firms. Apart from that, it is contributing $3 million toward the Climate Gender Equity Fund’s initial seed funding. The fund launches with $6 million in total, with USAID matching Amazon’s $3 million contribution.


The White House announcement states that the fund was also “enabled” by a $21 million appropriation by USAID from the Biden administration’s Gender Equity and Equality Action Fund with the aim of underscoring its “commitment to gender-responsive climate action.” The latter program, established last year with $100 million in taxpayer funds, an amount set to double for this year, is supposed to “advance economic security for women and girls globally.” A $430 billion spending package Biden signed in August included $386 billion in green energy subsidies and tax credits. The president’s speech at COP27 committed to several more ambitious green initiatives, including “establishing an international Climate Hub for climate-smart agriculture,” tightening emissions standards on the oil and natural gas industry, and using Ukraine as a showcase for small modular reactor (SMR) “advanced nuclear” technology.

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“..Borrell’s extraordinary Pollyanna-like assertion that in Europe and the West “everything works” and that the “garden” nations are havens of political, economic, and social stability.”

The ‘Garden Vs Jungle’ Worldview Is Not Only Racist, It’s Delusional (Hryce)

[..] let us start with Borrell’s extraordinary Pollyanna-like assertion that in Europe and the West “everything works” and that the “garden” nations are havens of political, economic, and social stability. This pronouncement will no doubt have come as a surprise to many citizens in Europe and the West. Has Borrell not noticed the recent rise of powerful right-wing political movements in a number of European countries? Is he not aware of the recent election results in Italy and Sweden? Have Borrell’s advisors not informed him of the political instability that has engulfed the United Kingdom in recent months, let alone the crisis in democracy that has crippled the United States for the past two years?

Has Borrell not noticed the dramatic recent rise in energy prices; rising inflation; rising interest rates; long-term wage stagnation; and the looming economic recession that is predicted to engulf many Western nations in the near future? Has Borrell not seen the tens of thousands of demonstrators marching in European capital cities in recent months? Is he unaware of the effects that EU austerity programs have had in many of the bloc’s member nations in recent years? Does Borrell really believe that the “garden” nations will sail through the upcoming European winter unscathed?


Has Borrell never heard of the so-called ‘culture wars’? Has he not noticed the collapse of liberal institutions and values throughout the West in recent decades? Has the immigration crisis that has bedevilled Europe in recent years, and has recently engulfed the United Kingdom, not yet been brought to his attention? Borrell, of course, pointedly fails to mention that all of the problems listed above have been severely exacerbated by the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. In fact, Borrell does not seem to appreciate that the increasing political and economic instability within the “garden” nations makes it increasingly difficult – if not impossible – for them to pursue his misguided foreign policy agenda.

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“From Dec. 5, tankers and shipping insurance linked to EU and G7 countries — which dominate oil shipping globally — will be barred from trading Russian crude unless those volumes are sold under the price cap, as yet undetermined.”

Washington Attempts to Bully India into Cutting Ties with Russia (NC)

For months the US has repeatedly tried to coerce India into cutting ties with Russia, thereby abandoning its national interests. New Delhi, however, continues to spurn American attempts to subject its economy to Washington’s dictates. The latest fuss concerns the G7 price cap on Russian oil and EU and UK bans on shipping and related services for Russian crude. India continues to have no interest in joining the US-led initiative as it gets a steep discount on oil from Russia and wants to maintain the relationship with a long-time strategic partner. Indian Foreign Affairs Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar was just in Moscow on Nov. 8 to discuss continued sales of oil. From the South China Morning Post:

“India’s foreign minister hailed New Delhi’s “strong and steady” relationship with Moscow on Tuesday, during his first visit there since Russia invaded Ukraine in February. Subrahmanyam Jaishankar also declared India’s intention to continue to buy Russian oil, again disregarding the US appeal to allies and partners to isolate Russia from the global markets.” The G-7 plans are likely to send oil prices higher (despite US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen claiming the opposite) and reduce tanker availability, both of which will threaten India’s energy security and hurt its economy as India is the third-largest consumer and importer of oil worldwide. Russia has said it will not sell to any countries that participate in the price cap scheme, and Jaishankar has repeatedly stated that India cannot afford to buy oil at high prices – at least not without undermining its economic growth, which is forecast to be 6.1 percent in 2023, the fastest-growing major economy in the world.

According to Energy Intelligence: “Russia emerged as India’s top crude supplier in October, shipping over 900,000 barrels per day or roughly a fifth of India’s demand. The two countries’ biggest concern is ensuring that Russian oil continues to flow after the Dec. 5 EU and UK bans and related G7 price cap. But despite Jaishankar’s bullish stance in Moscow, India’s state refiners have not placed orders for crude lifting beyond Dec. 5 due to uncertainties about whether shipping and insurance will be available, Energy Intelligence understands. And a recent attempt by an Indian buyer to use the price cap in negotiations with a Russian seller prompted the latter to abandon the deal, market sources said.”


The ongoing lack of clarity on the G-7 could be by design. Russian oil exports have already begun to dip, and Bruce Paulsen, a sanctions expert and partner at law firm Seward & Kissel, told American Shipper, “ If guidance on [price cap] compliance doesn’t come soon, some industry players may sit on the sidelines until they can determine that shipments under the price cap are safe.” The US, in a neat sleight of hand, quit pressuring India to adhere to the price cap, and Yellen now says Washington is “happy” for New Delhi to continue buying as much Russian oil as it wants, including at prices above a G7-imposed price cap. But there are just a few caveats: India wouldn’t be able to use western insurance, finance, or maritime services to transport the oil. “Russia is going to find it very difficult to continue shipping as much oil as they have done when the EU stops buying Russian oil,” Yellen told Reuters on Friday. “They’re going to be heavily in search of buyers, and many buyers are reliant on Western services.”

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You don’t say.

IMF Says Global Economic Outlook Getting ‘Gloomier’ (Az.)

The global economic outlook is even gloomier than projected last month, the International Monetary Fund said on Sunday, citing a steady worsening in purchasing manager surveys in recent months, Reuters reported. It blamed the darker outlook on tightening monetary policy triggered by persistently high and broad-based inflation, weak growth momentum in China, and ongoing supply disruptions and food insecurity caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. In a blog prepared for a summit of G20 leaders in Indonesia, the IMF said recent high-frequency indicators “confirm that the outlook is gloomier,” particularly in Europe. It said recent purchasing manager indices that gauge manufacturing and services activity signaled weakness in most Group of 20 major economies, with economic activity set to contract while inflation remained stubbornly high.

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They will simply nominate Putin for the Grinch. Everything that goes wrong with the western world is now exclusively his fault. And they can all hide their failures behind him.

German Retailers Face Nightmare Before Christmas (RT)

Shop owners in Germany are worried about the upcoming Christmas season, expecting a slump in sales in price-adjusted terms, as double-digit inflation driven by energy prices forced people to shop less in the third quarter, the German Retail Association (HDE) says. According to the latest report, sales will face a 4% drop in price-adjusted terms, despite an expected increase by 5.4% year-on-year in nominal terms projected for the last two months of 2022. The association surveyed 500 companies, and 70% of the respondents said they expect worse business conditions in the upcoming Christmas season than last year.


“There is a great deal of uncertainty among both companies and customers in view of the difficult situation with enormous energy price increases. High inflation and poor consumer sentiment do not really bode well for the Christmas season,” HDE Managing Director Stefan Genth said. In October, the German Federal Statistical Office reported that the harmonized inflation rate in Europe’s largest economy climbed to 11.6%, raising fears that the country will slide into a recession this winter.

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To repeat @JordanSchachtel:”Elon is blowing things up at Twitter because it is necessary to save the company. The old Twitter was a state-sponsored propaganda operation. Twitter as a private company will not have the privilege of unlimited resources.”

That is what Musk is up against. And of course the press.

Twitter Starts Massive Reductions In Contractors (RT)

After laying off half its staff earlier this month, Twitter has started culling its vast ranks of contract staff, sources confirmed to Axios, Report informs.Many contractors’ status has been in limbo since Twitter cut half its staff earlier this month, with some not knowing whom to even report to, since their counterparts inside the company have been laid off. Now some worry about their final paychecks since their teams no longer have any full-time Twitter employees to sign off on their time cards, sources tell Axios. The contractor cuts were noted earlier by Platformer’s Casey Newton. In at least some cases, if not all, workers did not get any direct communication from Twitter saying that their work had ended.


They instead found out by seeing their access to Twitter computer systems had been shut off. This parallels the scene when full-time employees found out they had lost their job, not from a promised e-mail on Friday, but overnight on Thursday as they lost access to e-mail and other corporate computing systems. Twitter has since reached out to re-hire some full-time employees after realizing their skills were critical to existing projects, including new features that were a priority to the company.

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“Are you suggesting the senator will abuse his political power to attack me?”

US Senator Threatens Elon Musk (RT)

US Senator Edward Markey has responded to a snarky tweet by Twitter owner Elon Musk by threatening congressional intervention if the billionaire doesn’t “fix” his companies to the lawmaker’s satisfaction. The row began on Friday, when Markey, a Massachusetts Democrat, demanded answers from Musk as to how a Washington Post reporter was able to create a verified account on the platform impersonating the senator. “I’m asking for answers from Elon Musk, who is putting profits over people and his debt over stopping disinformation. Twitter must explain how this happened and how to prevent it from happening again.” Musk, who acquired Twitter in a $44 billion takeover that was completed late last month, replied to Markey on Sunday, saying, “Perhaps it is because your real account sounds like a parody.” He posted another tweet asking why Markey’s profile picture shows him wearing a mask.

The Tesla CEO’s flippant response clearly didn’t sit well with the career politician, who warned, “One of your companies is under an FTC consent decree. Auto safety watchdog NHTSA is investigating another for killing people. And you’re spending your time picking fights online. Fix your companies, or Congress will.” Markey’s threat came amid leftist allegations that Musk’s takeover would make Twitter a “direct threat to public safety” by allowing “harmful” content. President Joe Biden, also a Democrat, suggested last week that his administration may need to investigate whether Musk’s cooperation with foreign countries created a “national security threat.”


Reacting to Musk’s spat with Markey, a Democrat activist group called People for Bernie said it was a bad idea for the billionaire to “troll a high-ranking senator with a history of taking down rich people.” Musk replied, “Are you suggesting the senator will abuse his political power to attack me?” Journalist Glenn Greenwald reacted by posting a 2020 clip of Markey calling for increased social media censorship. “Here’s Senator Markey demanding tech companies censor in accordance with his political views, all in the context of his party threatening social media companies with legal and regulatory reprisals if they fail to obey their censorship orders.”

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Just stop the nonsense. We’re tired of it.

COVID-19 Mortality in England ‘Extremely Rare’ Among Under-20s (ET)

Deaths from COVID-19 remain “extremely rare” in people under the age of 20, according to a study of follow-up data in the UK. Between March 2020 and December 2021, while there were 185 deaths in England among children and young people (CYP) within 100 days of a lab-confirmed COVID-19 infection, fewer than half died directly because of the virus, the study found. The peer-reviewed study, published on Nov. 8 on the PLOS Medicine Journal website, was conducted by researchers from the UK’s Health Security Agency (UKHSA). Studying the 22-month follow-up data on all 6,790 under-20s deaths, the team corroborated findings from a number of previous analyses that looked at data from a shorter period of time.

Excluding two stillbirth/intrauterine deaths, 81 (43 percent) deaths were attributed to COVID-19. It accounts for 1.2 percent of all-cause CYP deaths, with a COVID-19 infection fatality rate of 7 per million (using estimated infections number) and an overall mortality rate of 6 per million (estimated CYP population). Of the 81 deaths from COVID-19, one in four (20) were otherwise healthy, while 61 had “significant underlying health conditions,” including neuro-disability, immunocompromising conditions, Down syndrome, Edward syndrome, chronic heart disease, and four premature birth, meaning the COVID-19 mortality rate for otherwise healthy CYP was 1.5 per million. COVID-19 deaths were also clustered among older teens and infants, with more than half (47) occurring among those aged between 16 and 19, and 22 under a year old.


Eight children from the 1- to 4-year-old group died from COVID-19, along with 12 children aged between 5 and 11, and 15 children aged between 12 and 15. More than half (45) of the COVID-19 deaths occurred when the Delta variant of the novel coronavirus was dominant, while 21 died during the wild-type-dominant period, and 15 died during the Alpha wave. But the Delta variant was the least deadly in terms of infection mortality rate (6 per million) compared to Alpha (8 per million), and the wild-type (10 per million) as it was more infectious than the previous variants. The Omicron variant, which became dominant this year, wasn’t included in the study. Dr. Shamez Ladhani, pediatric infectious disease consultant at St. George’s Hospital London and consultant epidemiologist at the UKHSA who co-authored the study, told The Telegraph that “emerging data suggest that the Omicron variant is even less fatal in children compared to previous variants.”

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Fitts

 

 

 

 

 

 

Burzinsky

 

 

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Nov 132022
 
 November 13, 2022  Posted by at 9:54 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , ,  50 Responses »


Salvador Dali The three pines 1919

 

UK and EU To Try To Isolate Russia At G20 Summit (RT)
The New Candidate Countries For BRICS Expansion (SRB)
Surovikin’s Difficult Choice (Big Serge)
Tens of Billions Transferred to Ukraine and Laundered Through FTX (GP)
The FTX-Alameda Nexus (Coppola)
Up To $2 Billion In Client Money Missing In Crypto Giant FTX Collapse (NYP)
First Batch Of Blocked Russian Fertilizers Allowed To Leave EU Port (RT)
Showdown Slow Down (Jim Kunstler)
Crrraaaazy Wally -Street, That Is- (Denninger)
Ports Clogged With Containers As World Trade Stumbles (ZH)
Developing Nations Demand Rich Countries Pay For Climate Change (RT)
US Intel Report Vilifies Key Ally UAE – WaPo (RT)
La Scala Replies To Call To ‘Cancel’ Russian Composers (RT)
Elon Musk In Court Over $56 Billion Tesla Bonus (Telegraaf)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Who will be isolated? The collective west.

UK and EU To Try To Isolate Russia At G20 Summit (RT)

The UK and the EU intend to coordinate their efforts and do “everything possible” to make the Russian delegation feel unwelcome at the upcoming G20 summit in Indonesia’s Bali, a British media outlet has claimed. The Telegraph pointed out, however, that China, and possibly several other key players, is highly unlikely to follow suit. “We try to work with partners in order to show very, very, very firmly what the international community thinks about all these crimes, atrocities, and illegal actions by Russia,” a spokesperson for the EU’s foreign affairs service told the paper. The spokesperson explained that the bloc, together with the UK, will not only shun Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and stage walkouts during addresses by Moscow’s delegation, but also try to convince other nations to do the same.

According to the anonymous official, while the “UK is not keen on coordinating with the EU on foreign policy in general,” the concerted efforts to isolate Russia have proven to be an exception, as London and Brussels “have the same objective.” The report also quoted a French government source as saying that the meeting in Bali will not be “business as usual” and will center on the Ukraine conflict. “There will be a coalition and Russia is isolated,” the official concluded. The article noted, however, that the total isolation of Russia at the event is unlikely, as the country enjoys close relations with China. One unnamed EU official told the paper that Moscow and Beijing are expected to water down any joint statement calling for de-escalation in Ukraine.

The report also suggested that the likes of India, Saudi Arabia and Türkiye, which have not joined Western sanctions against Moscow, could break ranks with the EU and UK this time as well. Relations between Moscow and the West have hit an all-time low in the wake of the Russian military operation in Ukraine. However, Moscow has insisted that any attempts to isolate the country will fail. The key organizations that Russia is part of, such as BRICS, are also expanding. In fact, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa revealed following a meeting with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman last month that Riyadh would like to join BRICS, which currently comprises Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa. On top of that, media reports claimed back in July that Türkiye and Egypt might also be interested. Since the start of the year three countries – Iran, Argentina, and Algeria – have officially applied to join BRICS.

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I’d say the list is pretty much endless. Once you have South Africa, Nigeria, Egypt and Senegal, all African countries will want to join. Same in South America, Asia.

The New Candidate Countries For BRICS Expansion (SRB)

The Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov has stated that ‘over a dozen’ countries have formally applied to join the BRICS grouping following the groups decision to allow new members earlier this year. The BRICS currently includes Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. It is not a free trade bloc, but members do coordinate on trade matters and have established a policy bank, the New Development Bank, (NDB) to coordinate infrastructure loans. That was set up in 2014 in order to provide alternative loan mechanisms from the IMF and World Bank structures, which the members had felt had become too US-centric.

The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) was set up by China at about the same time for largely the same reasons and to offer alternative financing than that provided by the IMF and World Banks, which were felt to impose political reform policies designed to assist the United States in return for providing loans. Both the NDB and AIIB banks are Triple A rated and capitalised at US$100 billion. The NDB bank shares are held equally by each of the five members. In total, the BRICS grouping as it currently stands accounts for over 40% of the global population and nearly a quarter of the world’s GDP. The GDP figure is expected to double to 50% of global GDP by 2030. Expanding BRICS will immediately accelerate that process.

Concerning a BRICS expansion, Lavrov stated that Algeria, Argentina, and Iran had all applied, while it is already known that Saudi Arabia, Türkiye, Egypt and Afghanistan are interested, along with Indonesia, which is expected to make a formal application to join at the upcoming G20 summit in Bali. Other likely contenders for membership include Kazakhstan, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Senegal, Thailand and the United Arab Emirates. All had their Finance Ministers present at the BRICS Expansion dialogue meeting held in May. We can examine the basic economic data of the proposed new BRICS members as follows. GDP figures given are nominal, 2022 growth rates are based on the first 9 months of the year from data issued by the respective Central Banks.

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Not fully convinced.

Surovikin’s Difficult Choice (Big Serge)

Here is what I think Surovikin decided about Kherson. Kherson was becoming an inefficient front for Russia because of the logistical strain of supplying forces across the river with limited bridge and road capacity. Russia demonstrated that it was capable of shouldering this sustainment burden (keeping troops supplied all through Ukraine’s summer offensives), but the question becomes 1) to what purpose, and 2) for how long. Ideally, the bridgehead becomes the launching point for offensive action against Nikolayev, but launching an offensive would require strengthening the force grouping in Kherson, which correspondingly raises the logistical burden of projecting force across the river. With a very long front to play with, Kherson is clearly one of the most logistically intensive axes.

My guess is that Surovikin took charge and almost immediately decided he did not want to increase the sustainment burden by trying to push on Nikolayev. Therefore, if an offensive is not going to be launched from the Kherson position, the question becomes – why hold the position at all? Politically, it is important to defend a regional capital, but militarily the position becomes meaningless if one is not going to go on the offensive in the south. Let’s be even more explicit: unless an offensive towards Nikolayev is planned, the Kherson bridgehead is militarily counterproductive. While holding the bridgehead in Kherson, the Dnieper River becomes a negative force multiplier – increasing the sustainment and logistics burden and ever threatening to leave forces cut off if Ukraine succeeds in destroying the bridges or bursting the dam.

Projecting force across the river becomes a heavy burden with no obvious benefit. But by withdrawing to the east bank, the river becomes a positive force multiplier by serving as a defensive barrier. In the broader operational sense, Surovikin seems to be declining battle in the south while preparing in the north and in the Donbas. It is clear that he made this decision shortly after taking command of the operation – he has been hinting at it for weeks, and the speed and cleanliness of the withdrawal suggests that it was well planned , long in advance. Withdrawing across the river increases the combat effectiveness of the army significantly and decreases the logistical burden, freeing resources for other sectors. This fits the overall Russian pattern of making harsh choices about resource allocation, fighting this war under the simple framework of optimizing the loss ratios and building the perfect meatgrinder.

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Money Laundering 101.
1. Foreign aid goes to Ukraine.
2. Ukraine invests in $FTX
3. $FTX donates back to the Democratic Party.

Tens of Billions Transferred to Ukraine and Laundered Through FTX (GP)

We have information that the tens of billions of dollars going to Ukraine were actually laundered back to the US to corrupt Democrats and elites using FTX cryptocurrency. Now the money is gone and FTX is bankrupt. Earlier today we reported that the FTX cryptocurrency appeared to be used in a ponzi scheme involving the Democrats and Ukraine. As reported earlier, the FTX crypto company gave at least $40 million to Democrat candidates and causes in the midterms. Sam Bankman-Fried is Biden’s second biggest donor. In addition to this, Daily Caller lists many of the lawmakers who Sam Bankman Fried was bankrolling who oversaw the institution that was supposed to keep on eye on companies like FTX:

“Sam Bankman-Fried, prolific Democratic donor and ex-CEO of now-bankrupt cryptocurrency exchange FTX, funded the campaigns of members of Congress overseeing the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), one of the key bodies tasked with regulating the crypto industry and the subject of Bankman-Fried’s aggressive lobbying. Bankman-Fried’s FTX is currently under investigation by the CFTC and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) after Bankman-Fried allegedly moved $10 billion in client assets from his crypto exchange to his trading firm Alameda Research, and a liquidity crisis at his exchange which prompted the company to file for bankruptcy. However, prior to the agency’s probe, Bankman-Fried aggressively courted the CFTC – and funded several key lawmakers charged with overseeing the agency, pouring cash into their campaign coffers.”

FTX also happens to be related to Ukraine. The far-left Washington Post reported on March 3 that Ukraine was dealing in crypto. “The Ukrainian government has gathered more than $42 million in cryptocurrency donations since Saturday, plus digital artwork including a limited edition worth roughly $200,000, according to blockchain analytics firm Elliptic. The challenge is how the country cashes in on these assets to fund its war needs.” Then less than a week later FTX made the news for involving itself in Ukraine: “Amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the CEO of FTX, Sam Bankman Fried has come forward to help a crypto donation project. He humbly announced that FTX will be supporting the Ukrainian Ministry of Finance and other communities in collecting crypto donations for the country. The Ukrainian government has received over $60 million in crypto donations from all over the world.”

“FTX’s CEO, Sam Bankman Fried highlighted that the war in Ukraine has been dragging on. The country is in full need of humanitarian help and access to global financial infrastructure. He also called attention to sanctions and crypto during this kind of situation. He indicated that crypto exchanges should enforce sanctions announced by the government seriously. FTX has stressed across all of its regulatory and policy efforts, active coordination and communication with regulators and policymakers is crucial to ensuring that laws and rules achieve their intended outcome, reads a letter by FTXPointing out the urgency to help the nation Sam Bankman announced that the FTX team is honored to support the Ukrainian Ministry of Finance in simplifying the donation process.”

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Create you own token… “Customer assets deposited on the exchange are routinely lent to the hedge fund against collateral consisting of the exchange’s tokens.”

The FTX-Alameda Nexus (Coppola)

The young, dynamic, ambitious owner of a crypto hedge fund – let’s call him “Joe” – sets up a crypto exchange. To start with, this just enables his hedge fund can trade without having to pay margin or exchange fees. But Joe has larger ambitions. He wants to run the biggest and best exchange in the world. And he wants to make money from it. Lots and lots of money. Trillions of dollars, in fact. Now, his hedge fund can make money by taking risky leveraged positions, but it has to raise funds, and that’s not cheap. And his exchange can make money by charging fees on transactions, but although that can be a nice slow steady income, it’s not going to make him the trillions of dollars he wants.

But Joe’s spotted an opportunity. The exchange has lots of customer assets that aren’t earning anything. If he puts those customer assets to work, he can earn far more from his exchange customers. And he’s got an obvious vehicle through which to put them to work. The hedge fund. If he transfers customer assets on the exchange to the hedge fund, it can lend or pledge them at risk to earn megabucks. Of course, there’s a risk that the hedge fund could lose some or all of the customers’ funds. And the exchange promises that customers can have their assets back on demand, which could be a trifle problematic if they are locked up in leveraged positions held by the hedge fund. But this is crypto. There’s an easy solution. The exchange can issue its own token to replace the customer assets transferred to the hedge fund.

The exchange will report customer balances in terms of the assets they have deposited, but what it will actually hold will be its own token. If customers request to withdraw their balances, the exchange will sell its own tokens to obtain the necessary assets – after all, crypto assets, like dollars, are fungible. For this to work, however, the token must reliably hold its value. So the exchange creates more of the tokens than are needed to replace customer balances, and the hedge fund actively buys and sells them on the exchange, thus creating a market in the things and pumping the price. The price rockets, inflating the balance sheets of both the hedge fund and the exchange, and making $billions in unrealised profits for Joe and his investors – of whom there are suddenly a whole lot more, including some exceedingly respectable institutional investors.

It works brilliantly. So, this becomes Joe’s business model. Customer assets deposited on the exchange are routinely lent to the hedge fund against collateral consisting of the exchange’s tokens. There’s a massive and growing mismatch between the asset balances reported to customers on the exchange and the assets the exchange actually holds. But it doesn’t matter, because the token is highly liquid and the value of the tokens pledged as collateral comfortably exceeds the value of the missing customer assets. And the exchange can easily honour all withdrawal requests by trading out its own tokens. Indeed, the tokens are doing so well that even when the hedge fund suffers serious losses in a crypto crash, the exchange is able to bail it out. It’s completely self-sustaining. That is, until the token’s value crashes.

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“SBF and two FTX associates are currently being detained by authorities in the Bahamas, a source tells Cointelegraph..”

Up To $2 Billion In Client Money Missing In Crypto Giant FTX Collapse (NYP)

At least $1 billion of customer funds — and possibly as much as $2 billion — have gone missing in the implosion of the crypto currency exchange FTX, according to reports. FTX’s flamboyant founder, Sam Bankman-Fried, known in the industry as “SBF,” secretly funneled $10 billion of customer funds into his trading company, Alameda Research, sources told two media outlets. Alameda Research is run by Bankman-Fried’s girlfriend, Caroline Ellison. Two senior FTX officials claimed they saw the evidence that the money was missing in copies of financial records Bankman-Fried shared with company executives last week, according to Reuters.


On Friday, Bankman-Fried stepped down from his CEO position as the Bahamas-based FTX filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, after scrambling to shore up an $8 billion liquidity crisis that has left investors unable to claim their funds. A bid to save FTX via a rescue deal with rival exchange Binance didn’t work out, leading to crypto’s highest-profile collapse in recent years. In text messages to Reuters, Bankman-Fried, one of the largest donors to the Democratic Party, said he “disagreed with the characterization” of the $10 billion transfer. “We didn’t secretly transfer,” he said. “We had confusing internal labeling and misread it,” he added, without elaborating. “???” was Bankman-Fried’s response, when asked about the missing cash.

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“In September, he said that Russia was prepared to give these fertilizers to developing nations free of charge.”

So yeah, let’s block it for months…

First Batch Of Blocked Russian Fertilizers Allowed To Leave EU Port (RT)

The first batch of Russian fertilizers, which have been blocked at EU ports amid Ukraine-related sanctions, has been given permission to leave next week, the UN announced on Friday. The cargo amounts to 20,000 tons and is currently stationed in the Dutch port of Rotterdam. It is destined for the African nation of Malawi under the UN World Food Program. “The UN also briefed on recently issued General Licenses and shipments of fertilizer to developing countries’ destinations and its ongoing engagement with private sector and member states. It is anticipated that the first shipment of donated fertilizers will depart for Malawi in the coming week,” the UN said in a statement released after a meeting between senior UN officials and a Russian delegation led by Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Vershinin on Friday.

The meeting centered on Russia’s continued dissatisfaction with UN efforts to lift Western sanctions that pose problems for Russia’s agricultural exports. The organization pledged to assist Russia in the matter back in July as part of a UN-brokered Ukrainian grain deal, which unblocked the export of food and fertilizers from several Black Sea ports. Russia said it may choose not to extend its participation in the deal, which is set to expire on November 19, if the UN does not follow through on its promises regarding Russian exports. On Friday, the Dutch government confirmed that the Russian fertilizer cargo has been given permission to leave the port on the UN’s request. “The decision to release the fertilizer was made on the understanding that the UN would ensure that it is delivered to the agreed location, Malawi, and that the Russian company and sanctioned individual will earn nothing from the transaction,” the Dutch Foreign Affairs Ministry said in a statement.

It did not disclose the name of the Russian company that owns the shipment. Earlier this month, however, TASS news agency reported that Russian fertilizer producer Uralchem-Uralkali was ready to donate 240,000 tons of its fertilizers stuck in EU warehouses for humanitarian purposes, with the first shipment destined for Malawi. Prior to this, Russian President Vladimir Putin stated that a total of 300,000 tons of Russian fertilizers were stuck at EU ports due to Western sanctions. In September, he said that Russia was prepared to give these fertilizers to developing nations free of charge.

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“The opponents of Progressive-Woke-Jacobinism don’t need a circus ringmaster. They need a credible leader, especially one that can manage his or her emotions at least as well as Vladimir Putin does.”

Showdown Slow Down (Jim Kunstler)

The basic Democratic Party election strategy in recent decades has been to turn the voting public into so many millions of proverbial froggies in the pot of water set to slowly rise to boiling so that the froggies don’t notice they’re getting cooked until it’s too late to jump out of the pot. The Democrat’s Lawfare soldiers have slowly and systematically changed the methods of voting and counting the votes, especially to eliminate accountability for the massive scams and screw-ups that have occurred recently. The changes have been accepted as normal. One insidious change was shutting down the small local precinct polling places in churches and schools, where it was easy to get in, get your signature checked, and vote on-site, and where the precinct captains and workers were known and accountable to voters in the neighborhood.

Instead, Lawfare got states to consolidate all the action in huge impersonal voting centers — often sports arenas — where hundreds of election workers churned, and all sorts of frauds went unnoticed in the enormous shuffle of activity. It was also harder to get in and vote at such a giant venue on game day when thousands showed up and long lines formed — which made it easier for interested parties to justify the expansion of mail-in balloting. It’s just possible that Covid-19 was introduced in 2020 to make sure that Election Day in-person voting would look hazardous, with mail-ins becoming the dominant method. It sure helped get rid of Donald Trump.Among the conclusions of the 2005 Commission on Federal Election Reform, co-chaired by (Democratic) former president Carter and (Republican) former Secretary of State James Baker, was that mail-in voting is the easiest way to invite cheating and fraud.

Apparently, no one listened except Lawfare’s Marc Elias, who saw that as a good thing. What we got starting in 2020 and continuing today are the creative refinements of that, as fraudsters apply their zillions of dollars to new ways of stealing elections — as Mark Zuckerberg did in Wisconsin, literally switching out local election officials with Democratic Party activists. Then there are the as-yet-unresolved issues with the Dominion voting machines and their software. Are the machines enabled to hook into the internet? It seems to me that this has been proven. Why is it so hard to admit that these machines are janky and unnecessary? A thousand voices have pointed out that many other nations, France, for instance, use only paper ballots and manage to report the election results the night of.

Arizona is a whole helluva lot smaller than France, and even Florida, which thoroughly reformed its election laws under Governor DeSantis and published the midterm results the same night. Speaking of Mr. DeSantis and Mr. Trump, the ex-President has been verbally laying into the Florida governor so viciously lately that he might have made a fatal error in his quest for electoral redemption. The opponents of Progressive-Woke-Jacobinism don’t need a circus ringmaster. They need a credible leader, especially one that can manage his or her emotions at least as well as Vladimir Putin does.

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“Anyone who thinks The Fed can ignore 32.6% of spending in the economy has rocks in their head..”

Crrraaaazy Wally -Street, That Is- (Denninger)

We call it…. “crazy Ivan” – Hunt for Red October. Except this is November, and the crazy came out of the CPI report. The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) rose 0.4 percent in October on a seasonally adjusted basis, the same increase as in September, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Over the last 12 months, the all items index increased 7.7 percent before seasonal adjustment. The index for shelter contributed over half of the monthly all items increase, with the indexes for gasoline and food also increasing. If you were short into this there was no getting away from what went up your backside; a literal 100 handles went into the Spoos within seconds and I’m quite sure if you’d been short you would have been gapped over, so a stop would have gotten you exactly no protection.

The problem in the “better than expected” report is in that bolded line and in fact that’s a high going back all the way through April on a seasonally-adjusted basis. Food away from home also was up at the seasonally-adjusted high, where it has been for the last three months sequentially, so there’s no love there either. Note that the latter is often subject to fairly long supply lines and contracts which delay the impact of movement both ways, and thus that it is lagging is no big shock. Food at bars and restaurants has been up less than food at home over the last 12 months and thus you can expect it to continue hitting the index for quite some time yet. The 900lb Gorilla in the room this month is fuel oil, which is, as many people do not know, #2 diesel.

It was up a stunning 19.8% on the month and stands at 68.5% up from last year this time. Anyone expecting the consumer experience to improve with that record has rocks in their head, never mind those who use it for heating that are about to get a visit from the proctologist this winter. Incidentally if you are one of them and your supplier is screwing you on price go to a truck stop (or any rural fuel place that sells to farmers for off-road use) and bring jerry cans. They sell dyed fuel for use in the refer units. Its the same thing and if its cheaper to buy it there than pay whatever the guy with the truck wants to bring it to the house your decision should be obvious. Piped gas relaxed some, which is good news if you use it, but its still up 20% on the year.

A huge percentage of people use that for heat, so there you go. Oh, and guess what is used to generate electrical power? Uh huh, which is why electricity is up 14.1% on the year. If you remember me talking about “Owner’s Equivalent Rent” and how it falsely stated that there was no inflation while home prices shot the moon you can see the inverse of that right now in the OER number which is up 6.9% on the year. That which held down inflation figures for years is now going to prop them up for years, like it or not. There is no evidence that rents, on the other hand, is relaxing at all. Anyone who thinks The Fed can ignore 32.6% of spending in the economy has rocks in their head; they most-certainly will not, and that’s what shelter comprises. Annualized its up 6.9% so no, we’re not “winning” on inflation.

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“Global trade is moving backwards this year..”

Ports Clogged With Containers As World Trade Stumbles (ZH)

The latest Bloomberg Trade Tracker reveals an ominous outlook for world trade due to soaring interest rates, the war in Ukraine, a slowdown in the US economy, and zero Covid in China. A shortage of containers has entirely reversed into a glut as crashing shipping rates and canceled sails gain momentum during what is supposed to be the busiest shipping period of the year. “The world’s two biggest economies are feeling glum about the export outlook, with both the US and China gauges in contraction in October and the American one in “below-normal” range on the Tracker,” according to Bloomberg. Earlier this week, we explained that economic storm clouds are gathering worldwide as some of the largest shipping companies warn about decelerating global trade.


US shipper FedEx and Danish shipping giant A.P. Moller-Maersk A/S have been vocal about emerging signs of a global slowdown. “Global trade is moving backwards this year,” Maersk’s chief executive officer Soren Skou told Bloomberg Television at the start of November. FedEx CFO Michael Lenz told an audience Tuesday at the Robert W Baird Global Industrial Conference earlier this week that his company parked planes cut costs in response to weak demand for package delivery. The Covid boom for goods has evaporated. Consumers have switched from buying computers and television to spending whatever money they have left on experiences. We predict in May that an inventory glut, i.e., the reverse bullwhip effect, would cool the booming freight market. It’s now peak shipping season — retailers have already canceled overseas orders as freight companies reduce shipping capacity ahead of Black Friday and Christmas.

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Yeah, but we’re broke…

Developing Nations Demand Rich Countries Pay For Climate Change (RT)

Leaders from developing countries have accused wealthy nations and the energy industry of triggering climate change and demanded compensation for the damage it has inflicted on their economies. While oil and gas companies are reaping the benefits, small island states are being devastated by ocean storms caused by rising sea levels, they say. Speaking at the COP27 climate summit in Egypt on Tuesday, Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister Gaston Browne noted that “oil and gas industry continues to earn almost $3 billion daily in profits,” while “the planet is burning.” “It is about time that these companies are made to pay a global carbon tax on their profits as a source of funding for loss and damage,” Browne added.

Poor nations point at the hypocrisy of their wealthier counterparts, which are the most vocal advocates of slashing emissions while themselves being the biggest polluters following a century of fossil fuel-driven industrialization. Developing countries are now asking how they will be compensated for the floods and droughts attributed to climate change. “I’m not here to ask any of you to love the people of my country with the same passion as I do,” said the prime minister of the Bahamas, Philip Davis. “I’m asking what is it worth to you to have millions of climate refugees to turn into tens of millions, putting pressure on political and economic systems around the world.”

Meanwhile, Senegalese President Macky Sall admitted that his country’s economy is unable to shift away from fossil fuels immediately but said that poorer developing countries in Africa needed increased funding from wealthy nations in order to adapt to the worsening climate. “Let’s be clear, we are in favor of reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. But we Africans cannot accept that our vital interests be ignored,” he said.

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Saudi, Iran, now UAE. No many US friends left.

US Intel Report Vilifies Key Ally UAE – WaPo (RT)

The United Arab Emirates, arguably one of Washington’s most trusted Arab allies, has gamed US foreign policy by meddling in the American political system using both legal and illegal tactics, intelligence officials have reportedly claimed in a classified report. The activities in question spanned multiple US administrations and exploited “vulnerabilities” in the American system, including reliance on political contributions and lax enforcement of laws designed to protect against foreign interference, the Washington Post reported on Saturday. Some of the tactics “resemble espionage,” the newspaper added, citing three unidentified sources who have seen the classified report.

The report illustrates how the US political system is being distorted by foreign money, one Washington lawmaker told the Post, arguing that a “very clear red line needs to be established against the UAE playing in American politics. I’m not convinced we’ve ever raised this with the Emiratis at a high level.” Top US policymakers allegedly received briefings on the classified intelligence report in recent weeks. It’s an unusual advisory for US intelligence agencies to issue because it pertains to a close ally – rather than an adversary, such as Russia, China or Iran – and could be interpreted as delving into domestic politics, said Bruce Riedel, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution. Yousef Al Otaiba, the UAE’s ambassador to Washington, defended the oil-rich nation’s outsized influence in the US. “It has been hard-earned and well-deserved,” he told the Post.

“It is the product of decades of close UAE-US cooperation and effective diplomacy. It reflects common interests and shared values.” The UAE has spent more than $154 million on lobbyists since 2016, according to US government records, as well as hundreds of millions of dollars that were donated to American colleges and think tanks. Many of those institutions have produced policy papers with recommendations that are favorable to UAE interests. Those investments have apparently been fruitful, as Washington has approved sales of some of the most advanced US-made weaponry, including MQ-9 Predator drones and F-35 fighter jets, to the UAE. No other Arab nation has been afforded such privileges because US leaders have sought to avoid “diminishing Israel’s qualitative military edge” in the Middle East, the Post said.

Bordering Saudi Arabia to the southwest and Oman to the east, oil-rich UAE is a member of OPEC. Around 2,000 US soldiers and airmen are stationed at Abu Dhabi’s al-Dhafra airbase, and both countries supported Saudi Arabia’s war against the Houthis in Yemen, though the Pentagon ceased supporting “offensive” operations there in 2021, and the UAE withdrew its ground troops in early 2020. In early August, Washington authorized a $2.2 billion sale of 96 Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system missiles, to help Abu Dhabi repel possible ballistic missile threats in the region. However, after OPEC+ members announced their decision to cut oil production last month, multiple US lawmakers accused Washington’s allies of “siding with Russia” and proposed withdrawing troops and missile defense systems from both UAE and Saudi Arabia as a punishment.

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“..discarding the works of Mussorgsky or poet and novelist Alexander Pushkin would be like discarding the works of Shakespeare or Dante..”

La Scala Replies To Call To ‘Cancel’ Russian Composers (RT)

Italy’s famed La Scala theater in Milan has insisted that Russian culture should not be “penalized” because of the military operation against Kiev. It defended its decision to include the works of Russian composers in its newest program after a Ukrainian consul called them instruments of Moscow’s propaganda campaign. According to Italian news agency ANSA, Andrey Kartysh, Ukraine’s consul general in Milan, sent a letter to La Scala CEO Dominique Meyer, as well as Milan Mayor Giuseppe Sala and the head of the Lombardy region, Attilio Fontana, asking to “review” its program for the 2022-2023 season in order to avoid “potential elements of propaganda.” The diplomat cited the “great disappointment and regret” of the Ukrainian community in Italy.

“Culture is being used by the Russian Federation to lend weight to its assertions of greatness and power,” he wrote, arguing that “the pandering to its propaganda can only fuel the image of the regime [in Moscow] and, by extension, its evil ambitions and countless crimes.” La Scala plans to kick off its newest season on December 7 with the opera ‘Boris Godunov’ by 19th-century Russian composer Modest Mussorgsky. The opera is about a Russian tsar who ruled during the Time of Trouble, a period of political upheaval and turbulence in early 17th century Russia. The program also includes ‘The Nutcracker’ ballet, whose score was written by Pyotr Tchaikovsky, and a recital by Russian soprano Anna Netrebko. La Scala Music Director Riccardo Chailly defended the decision to show ‘Boris Godunov’ on stage.

“To remove a masterpiece… is to penalize the culture,” he argued, as quoted by the newspaper Corriere della Sera on Saturday. “Art should not pay for the havoc of what has been happening after February 24,” Chailly said, referring to the date that Russia launched its military operation in the neighboring state. He added that discarding the works of Mussorgsky or poet and novelist Alexander Pushkin would be like discarding the works of Shakespeare or Dante. Chailly noted that the opera house expressed support for Ukraine early on in the conflict and raised €380,000 for Ukrainian refugees in April. Stage director Francesco Micheli, who sits on La Scala’s governing board, called the Ukrainian consul general’s request “reckless,” saying that he “ignores that the opera has no connection with the situation” in his home country. “I think La Scala sees the program as a way to show the unifying value of culture. That is why La Scala should be praised,” Italian Under Secretary of State for Culture Vittorio Sgarbi said.

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Google translation.

Looks like the “thrash metal drummer” is being used by much bigger parties. But Musk made a lot of people a lot of money, and “the proposal has been passed by a large majority by Tesla shareholders.”

Still, lawyers are looking at large fees, so they continue.

@JordanSchachtel:”Elon is blowing things up at Twitter because it is necessary to save the company. The old Twitter was a state-sponsored propaganda operation. Twitter as a private company will not have the privilege of unlimited resources.”

Elon Musk In Court Over $56 Billion Tesla Bonus (Telegraaf)

Elon Musk has to defend a billion-dollar bonus in a US court on Monday that was promised to him a few years ago at Tesla. That bonus could be so high that the Tesla CEO could recoup the entire $44 billion he recently invested in the Twitter acquisition. Musk was promised a package of stock options in 2018 if he could achieve certain goals with Tesla. Since then, Tesla’s stock price has increased more than tenfold and the company was briefly worth more than 1000 billion dollars. According to calculations, Musk could make up to $56 billion. The controversial package allows him to buy 1 percent of Tesla’s shares at a big discount every time certain targets are reached. Richard Tornetta, a small Tesla investor, thought the bonus was excessive and filed a lawsuit as early as 2018. At the time, there was immediately a lot of speculation that the Tesla stock price could rise to great heights.


Tornetta, who is also a thrash metal drummer and runs an audio equipment company, also finds it unfair that Musk was awarded the remuneration of a board that would actually be completely under his control. One of the directors involved was Kimbal Musk, the brother of the richest man in the world. Yet the matter is not so simple. Musk’s lawyers have pointed out that the proposal has been passed by a large majority by Tesla shareholders. Because of the bonus, Musk would have been focused on making Tesla better. And this is said to be the reason why the share price has soared, which is in the interest of all shareholders. The case is being heard in the state of Delaware by the same judge who recently dealt with the case between Twitter and Musk to force the latter to go through with its takeover plan.

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Cobalt

 

 

 

 

 

 

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