Feb 012023
 
 February 1, 2023  Posted by at 9:52 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , ,  88 Responses »


Claude Monet Water lillies 1914 – 1917

 

A Panicked Empire Tries To Make Russia An ‘Offer It Can’t Refuse’ (Escobar)
Desperate Actions (Dionísio)
The War and the Future (Batiushka)
France ‘Open’ To Sending Fighter Jets To Ukraine. UK Says “Not Practical” (ZH)
House GOP Kicks Off Biden Corruption Investigations (ZH)
Gold And The Shrinking Trust Horizon (John Rubino)
Norway’s Wealth Fund Posts Heavy Losses (RT)
Buzzfeed Sacks 180 Journalists, Replaces Them With AI (RT)
The Press Versus The President, Part Two (CJR)
Twitter Makes Move That Could Take Out ‘Woke’ PayPal (TPN)
Who Will be Spared from COVID-19 Vaccine Injury? (McCullough)
Did 7.5 Million People Die From Covid Shots? (Horowitz)
Massive Mask Meta-study Undermines Remaining Covid Mandates (JTN)
How Ivermectin Kills Prostate Cancer Cells (PR)
Quantum Entanglement Just Got A Whole Lot Weirder (Siegel)

 

 

 

 

U.S. Not Prepared to take on Russia / Macgregor

 

 

 

 

Tucker Dore

 

 

Winning

 

 

Gonzalo primer

 

 

 

 

Involves the John Helmer piece we mentioned recently.

A Panicked Empire Tries To Make Russia An ‘Offer It Can’t Refuse’ (Escobar)

Realizing NATO’s war with Russia will likely end unfavorably, the US is test-driving an exit offer. But why should Moscow take indirect proposals seriously, especially on the eve of its new military advance and while it is in the winning seat? Those behind the Throne are never more dangerous than when they have their backs against the wall. Their power is slipping away, fast: Militarily, via NATO’s progressive humiliation in Ukraine; Financially, sooner rather than later, most of the Global South will want nothing to do with the currency of a bankrupt rogue giant; Politically, the global majority is taking decisive steps to stop obeying a rapacious, discredited, de facto minority. So now those behind the Throne are plotting to at least try to stall the incoming disaster on the military front.

As confirmed by a high-level US establishment source, a new directive on NATO vs. Russia in Ukraine was relayed to US Secretary of State Antony Blinken. Blinken, in terms of actual power, is nothing but a messenger boy for the Straussian neocons and neoliberals who actually run US foreign policy. The secretary of state was instructed to relay the new directive – a sort of message to the Kremlin – via mainstream print media, which was promptly published by the Washington Post. In the elite US mainstream media division of labor, the New York Times is very close to the State Department. and the Washington Post to the CIA. In this case though the directive was too important, and needed to be relayed by the paper of record in the imperial capital. It was published as an Op-Ed.

The novelty here is that for the first time since the start of Russia’s February 2022 Special Military Operation (SMO) in Ukraine, the Americans are actually proposing a variation of the “offer you can’t refuse” classic, including some concessions which may satisfy Russia’s security imperatives. Crucially, the US offer totally bypasses Kiev, once again certifying that this is a war against Russia conducted by Empire and its NATO minions – with the Ukrainians as mere expandable proxies. The Washington Post’s old school Moscow-based correspondent John Helmer has provided an important service, offering the full text of Blinken’s offer, of course extensively edited to include fantasist notions such as “US weapons help pulverize Putin’s invasion force” and a cringe-worthy explanation: “In other words, Russia should not be ready to rest, regroup and attack.”

The message from Washington may, at first glance, give the impression that the US would admit Russian control over Crimea, Donbass, Zaporozhye, and Kherson – “the land bridge that connects Crimea and Russia” – as a fait accompli. Ukraine would have a demilitarized status, and the deployment of HIMARS missiles and Leopard and Abrams tanks would be confined to western Ukraine, kept as a “deterrent against further Russian attacks.” What may have been offered, in quite hazy terms, is in fact a partition of Ukraine, demilitarized zone included, in exchange for the Russian General Staff cancelling its yet-unknown 2023 offensive, which may be as devastating as cutting off Kiev’s access to the Black Sea and/or cutting off the supply of NATO weapons across the Polish border.

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RAND Corp.

Desperate Actions (Dionísio)

Something is changing on Mount Olympus and it is leaving in tatters the union of tendencies connected to the U.S.-state falconry. To understand and predict the actions of the political elite that commands, through their transnational mandataries, our destinies, implies knowing what one of the most important US defense think tanks reflects and publishes. This research leads us to an entity that rarely appears in the “informative” moments of the North Atlantic press: the RAND Corporation. RAND’s best-known moment with regard to the conflict in Eastern Europe is signaled by the publication of the report “Extending Russia – Competing from Advantageous Ground”. This report contains the entire menu of malfeasance that, in the claims made public and repeated by the US power summit, would lead to a fulminating defeat of the political, economic, and military power of the Russian Federation.

The analysis expressed publicly, by the various political actors, was that the Russian Federation was nothing more than “a gasoline bomb with nuclear weapons,” a “paper tiger” with a GDP equal to that of Holland, and a people gagged by a “mad dictator” who remained in power only through “authoritarianism” and “repression”. Based on an analysis whose information seemed to substantiate such political positions, the RAND report advocated a type of intervention, some of which were well reported – others not so well reported – in the official press. This was the case with the attempted “colored” revolutions made in CIA in Belarus, Kazakhstan, and the Central Asian countries, which, together with Georgia and Moldova, would probably be “promoted” and “supported” to the condition of an actual Ukraine.

The Russian Federation, having to meet all the fires, some because they would become proxy armies (like Ukraine), others turned into bases of destabilizing operations launched by the CIA, would eventually “extend” itself until it broke into pieces and collapsed, putting an end to the current threat. Even without this partition, a point could always be reached where, after the destruction of the incumbent political power, a more docile “regime” would be installed, pointing to a more “advantageous position on the ground.” Given to be known only in 2019, we are forced to note that this strategy had long been in preparation, especially since the Russian president lost hope that he could count on a Western “partnership” and announce the end of the unipolar world. Fact is, the report has a logical connection with the 2018 National Defense Strategy (US national defense strategy).

At any rate, this strategy points to the “Yugoslavization” of the Russian Federation. The truth is that the constant itinerary of this work has been followed almost scrupulously by the U.S. security and defense establishment: “colored” revolutions; states transformed into proxy armies; communication and disinformation campaigns; destabilization and sabotage operations; economic sanctions and embargoes. A menu of fulminating “democratic” activities on the rise! And why is it important to talk about this today? It is important because in the last few days a new paper from the RAND corporation was published, but this time in reverse, a study entitled “Avoiding a Long War U.S. Policy and the Trajectory of the Russia-Ukraine Conflict.”

Lula

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“First of all, probably within the next fifteen months, we shall see the full liberation of the Ukraine..”

The War and the Future (Batiushka)

Since the historic Special Military Operation to liberate the peoples of the Ukraine from their US puppet tyrants in Kiev began on 24 February 2022, the post-1945 settlement has been over. In fact, it should have been over with the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 or, at latest, at the dissolution of the USSR in 1991. However, the USA was blinded by its exceptionalist hubris as ‘the only Superpower’ and engaged in its latest fantasy of destroying Islam, which it mistakenly saw as a serious rival, arrogantly dismissing Russia, China and India as minor players. So, as a sectarian rogue-state, the USA began its war of terror on all who thought differently, which it so humiliatingly lost. This can be seen in the dramatic pictures of the last flights out of Kabul in 2021.

In other words, after the end of the Soviet Union, which had been born directly out of World War One and formally founded in 1922, the end of the American Union (= NATO) should have followed, and with it the end of the worldwide American Empire. Thus, today NATO is an anachronism, well past its best before date, which is why has begun meddling all over the world, from the foothills of the Himalaya to the Pacific Ocean. NATO is just like the alphabet soup of other US organisations and fronts, IMF, EU, WTO, OECD, G7, G20 and UN, with its mere five Security Council members, including minor Great Britain and France. What might await us as a result of the liberation of the Ukraine on the centenary of the 1945 settlement, in 2045?

1. After the Ukraine. First of all, probably within the next fifteen months, we shall see the full liberation of the Ukraine. With the eastern Novorossija half of the Ukraine returning to Russia, the remaining half, Central and Western Ukraine, perhaps minus Zakarpattia (returning to Hungary as an autonomous region under the Balogh brothers) and Chernivtsy (returning to Romania), will return to being Malorossija, its capital in Kiev. Thus, the way will at last be open to form the Confederation of Rus’. The at last freed East Slav lands and peoples, Eurasian Russia and the Eastern European Belarus and Malorossija, could together form such a Confederation of Rus’, with a total population of just under 200 million.

2. The Reconfiguration of Eurasia . After the Ukrainian question has been solved and the USA has lost its political, military and, above all, economic power to bully the rest of the world, all of us in Eurasia will be able to start living in our new-found Freedom and building Justice and Prosperity for all. We foresee first of all the expansion of the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU).

Wagner

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“..given training on the Abrams M1 tank could take at minimum six months, something as sophisticated as Western-made fighter jets could take years for pilots unfamiliar with their systems to get combat ready on..”

France ‘Open’ To Sending Fighter Jets To Ukraine. UK Says “Not Practical” (ZH)

Here we go again… French President Emmanuel Macron in Monday comments signaled openness to sending Ukraine advanced fighter jets, something which Kiev has broadly asked its allies for since nearly the start of the Russian invasion. “Nothing is excluded in principle,” Macron said immediately following talks with Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte when pressed by reporters about the question of fighter jets for Ukraine. The Dutch premier himself had weighed in too saying, “There is no taboo but it would be a big step.” But he noted, “It is not at all a question of F-16s, there has been no demand (from Ukraine).” Macron added that the French “are not making this request at the moment for fighter jets” – in what appears a first confirmation that the Ukrainian government has not yet gone through with a formal ask.

Macron’s fresh remarks, however, are likely to be seen from Kiev as an invitation to proceed with a formal request, while will putting more pressure on Paris and the Western alliance. Ukrainian officials have long been going through Poland, it seems, to press the jet issue with NATO command in Brussels. Macron stipulated that jets for Ukraine must “not be escalatory” – meaning that they would “not be likely to hit Russian soil but purely to aid the resistance effort.” But obviously advanced fighters would be escalatory by the very nature of sending them after Moscow has reiterated its “red lines”. As for the rest of Europe, on the same day that the White House said that it would not be sending jets, Britain’s Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said it would not be practical.

“The UK’s … fighter jets are extremely sophisticated and take months to learn how to fly. Given that, we believe it is not practical to send those jets into Ukraine,” a spokesperson for the British prime minister told reporters. “We will continue to discuss with our allies about what we think what is the right approach.” Indeed given training on the Abrams M1 tank could take at minimum six months, something as sophisticated as Western-made fighter jets could take years for pilots unfamiliar with their systems to get combat ready on. Germany too has issued a firm “no” amid mounting pressure from Ukraine for jets. Meanwhile it’s no surprise that the European country pressing the hardest to send jets continues to be Poland. Warsaw has been pressing the rest of NATO to transfer jets since the opening months of the war. On Monday Polish officials expressed readiness to send US-made F-16s to Ukraine, but emphasized it would only do so in coordination with NATO. “We will act in full coordination here,” Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said.

Boris

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“..organized GOP members into “task forces” to come up with oversight and legislative priorities..”

House GOP Kicks Off Biden Corruption Investigations (ZH)

Newly empowered House Republicans are kicking off their long-planned investigations into a wide variety of issues, beginning with hearings on the US-Mexico border crisis, the origins of Covid-19, and pandemic relief programs. The House Judiciary Committee’s first meeting of the new Congress, led by Chairman Jim Jordan (R-OH), will be “The Biden Border Crisis: Part I.” Then, the House Energy and Commerce investigations subcommittee will hold a hearing titled: “Challenges and Opportunities to Investigating the Origins of Pandemics and Other Biological Events,” as part of its probe into the origins of Covid-19. Meanwhile, the House Oversight and Accountability Committee, led by James Comer (R-KY) will kick off a hearing on waste, fraud and abuse related to federal pandemic spending, The Hill reports.

“I don’t think history will be kind to the PPP loan program,” said Comer during a Monday appearance at a National Press Club event, referring to the program that provided businesses with forgivable loans. “I think it’ll be eventually viewed in the same manner that the big bank bailouts were when people find out where a lot of that money was going.” Republicans had been plotting extensive investigations into the Biden administration for more than a year before the midterm elections. Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), in preparation for taking the House majority, organized GOP members into “task forces” to come up with oversight and legislative priorities. Republican members of committees started investigations last year when they were in the minority.

Republicans now have control over committee hearing topics, a better chance of getting answers from administration officials, and are armed with subpoena power to compel testimony and documents — though no committee has used it yet. Next week, the Oversight panel is set to hold a hearing on the U.S.-Mexico border and a hearing with former Twitter employees about the platform’s suppression of the New York Post’s story on the Hunter Biden hard drive in 2020. -The Hill Speaking of the Bidens, the Oversight panel is also conducting an ‘extensive probe’ into the business dealings of President Biden’s family which will focus on Hunter Biden. Republicans on the House Oversight, Judiciary and Intelligence committees have also sought information related to President Biden’s mishandling of classified information, while the House Foreign Affairs and Armed Services committees are going to be investigating the botched withdrawal from Afghanistan.

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“..the military industrial complex is starting (potentially nuclear) wars all over the place. Government debt is growing exponentially. Wall Street has turned the markets into one big casino. Universities have become (very expensive) insane asylums. Congress is full of insider traders who amass fortunes while “serving the public.”

Gold And The Shrinking Trust Horizon (John Rubino)

[..] believe it or not, the public health establishment losing its credibility is related to precious metals, via something called the trust horizon. It works like this: When things are good and the people in charge of big systems seem to be running them well, we’re content to trust the experts. We keep most of our money in banks, brokerage houses, and crypto wallets that exist for us only as websites. We buy produce that’s grown in a different hemisphere and shipped via boats, trains, and trucks to corporate chain grocery stores. We vaccinate ourselves and our kids according to the schedules set by the NIH or the CDC. We pop pills on our doctor’s orders without doing any research. We eat processed foods on the assumption that the FDA keeps them free of dangerous additives. And we believe what we see on cable news.

In other words, our trust horizon, defined as the distance from ourselves at which we’ll believe what we’re told, is global. We assume everything everywhere is working for our benefit and we’re thus willing to put our welfare in those distant hands. But let some big systems fail to take proper care of us and we pull back, finding people and institutions closer to home that we can see and judge first-hand. We move our money out of distant banks and brokers and into local credit unions whose managers live down the street. We start buying groceries from farmers markets or directly from local farmers. Instead of popping whatever pill is standard for our ailments we look into “food as medicine” and other lifestyle remedies like exercise, supplements, and meditation. We homeschool our kids and join gun clubs. We buy homesteads and start raising chickens.

So where are today’s Americans on the trust horizon spectrum? Well, the military industrial complex is starting (potentially nuclear) wars all over the place. Government debt is growing exponentially. Wall Street has turned the markets into one big casino. Universities have become (very expensive) insane asylums. Congress is full of insider traders who amass fortunes while “serving the public.” And our presidents, well, insert your sarcastic phrase here. It’s safe to say that for a growing number of disillusioned people, trust now extends to – maybe — the governor’s mansion, city hall, local farmers, their church and one or two community banks. And that’s about it.

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“The market was impacted by war in Europe, high inflation, and rising interest rates. This negatively impacted both the equity market and bond market at the same time, which is very unusual. All the sectors in the equity market had negative returns, with the exception of energy.”

Norway’s Wealth Fund Posts Heavy Losses (RT)

Norway’s sovereign wealth fund, Government Pension Fund Global, posted a record loss of 1.64 trillion kroner ($164.4 billion) in 2022, according to data published on the fund’s website on Tuesday. The return on investment last year was negative 14.1%, according to the released figures. The fund’s equities holdings posted a 15.3% loss, while its fixed-income portfolio was down 12.1%. Nicolai Tangen, CEO of Norges Bank Investment Management, the entity that manages the fund, commented: “The market was impacted by war in Europe, high inflation, and rising interest rates. This negatively impacted both the equity market and bond market at the same time, which is very unusual. All the sectors in the equity market had negative returns, with the exception of energy.”


Despite the record loss, the overall value of the fund increased by 89 billion kroner ($8.9 billion) year-on-year. This was largely due to a record 1.1 trillion kroner ($109 billion) inflow, a figure roughly three times larger than the previous high from 2008. Currency fluctuations also helped, adding some 642 billion kroner ($64 billion) to the fund’s value. The fund, which reportedly lost the status of the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund to China Investment Corporation, had a value of 12.4 trillion kroner ($1.2 trillion) as of December 31, 2022. The fund invests the revenue from Norway’s oil and gas sales, which grew substantially last year after the country became Europe’s largest gas supplier due to the drop in Russian flows. The fund holds stakes in some 9,300 companies globally and owns the equivalent of 1.3% of all listed stocks.

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“..the use of the technology could be extended further to help “create, personalize, and animate the content itself..”

Buzzfeed Sacks 180 Journalists, Replaces Them With AI (RT)

Struggling online publisher BuzzFeed will start using artificial intelligence (AI) to help write its quizzes after laying off dozens of employees, Report informs referring to The Telegraph. The media company, known for its light-hearted articles and “listicles”, will work with OpenAI, the creator of ChatGPT, on the initiative. The chatbot, which provides human-like written responses to prompts, has attracted praise from tech executives, academics and politicians amid hopes it could simplify and transform tasks across a range of industries. The technology will be used to create quizzes on the website that are tailored to an individual, with, for example, a pitch for a personalized rom com.


The quiz would ask prompt questions such as “Pick a trope for your rom com” and “Tell us an endearing flaw you have” before using AI to generate a write-up based on the responses, according to a memo to staff from chief executive Jonah Peretti. Peretti said he planned to increase the use of AI across BuzzFeed’s editorial output and business operations this year, according to the memo seen by the Wall Street Journal. Peretti said he expected AI to assist the creative process and enhance the content, while humans would provide “cultural currency” and “inspired prompts”. But he suggested the use of the technology could be extended further to help “create, personalize, and animate the content itself” over the next 15 years. sThe company’s push into AI comes just over a month after it sacked 12pc of its workforce – around 180 employees.

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4-part series.

The Press Versus The President, Part Two (CJR)

In a windowless conference room at Trump Tower, on January 6, 2017, Comey briefed the president-elect about the dossier about him and Russia. Trump had heard, from aides, media “rumblings” about Russia, but, in an interview, he said he was unaware of the dossier until he met with Comey. Comey’s one-on-one with Trump came after the intelligence community briefed him on a new “Intelligence Community Assessment” (ICA) on Russian activities in 2016. The ICA claimed that Russia had mounted an “influence campaign” aimed at the election but had not targeted or compromised vote-tallying systems. Its most important, and controversial, finding was that “Putin and the Russian government developed a clear preference for President-elect Trump,” as opposed to Russia’s usual goal, which was generally sowing chaos in the United States.

An unclassified version of the ICA was released the same day in Washington. The dossier, actually a series of reports in 2016, was included in the assessment, but it remained secret, temporarily, because a summary of it was attached as a classified appendix. “The only thing that really resonated,” Trump said about the briefing, “was when he said four hookers,” a reference to the unsubstantiated claim of a salacious encounter in Moscow. Trump’s immediate reaction was that “this is not going to be good for the family,” he recalled. But his wife, Melania, “did not believe it at all,” telling him, “That’s not your deal with the golden shower,” Trump recalled. Trump’s marriage might have survived but his hoped for honeymoon with the press was about to end. The dossier, largely suppressed by the media in 2016, was about to surface.

But first came the ICA. It received massive, and largely uncritical coverage. Some other reporters weren’t convinced. Gessen called the ICA “flawed” because it was based on “conjecture” and incorporated “misreported or mistranslated” and “false” public statements. They criticized the major media, including the New York Times, for describing the ICA as a “strong statement.” In an interview, Gessen said that their skepticism left them isolated and they began to “lose confidence.” The dossier wound up in the ICA because the FBI pushed it, despite reservations at the CIA. Agency analysts saw it as an “internet rumor,” according to Justice Department documents. Two “senior managers in the CIA mission center responsible for Russia” also had reservations, according to a memoir by Brennan, the head of the agency at the time.

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A lot of people will like an alternative to Paypal.

Twitter Makes Move That Could Take Out ‘Woke’ PayPal (TPN)

Twitter CEO Elon Musk is not messing around. The billionaire truly does want to take over the world. Back in October, Musk purchased Twitter for $44 billion and made it clear from day one that he had high ambitions. As Elon Musk strives to revive Twitter, the company has taken action by submitting applications for regulatory licenses in various parts of the US and developing the necessary software to incorporate payments within the social media platform. This would directly compete with PayPal who has been slammed by Conservatives for their ‘woke’ practices including banning and suspending payments from people who they don’t agree with. Check out what the Financial Times reported:

“Esther Crawford, a fast-rising lieutenant to Musk inside Twitter, has started to map out the architecture needed to facilitate payments on the platform with a small team, according to two people familiar with the company’s plans. The nascent moves to allow payments through the site are a critical part of Musk’s plan to open up fresh revenue streams. Twitter’s $5bn-a-year advertising business has cratered since he bought the platform for $44bn in October, with marketers citing concerns over its management and moderation. Musk has previously said he wants Twitter to offer fintech services such as peer-to-peer transactions, savings accounts and debit cards, as part of a masterplan to launch an “everything app” that incorporates messaging, payments and commerce. In 1999, Musk co-founded X.com, one of the first online banks, which later became part of payments giant PayPal. [..] Twitter is also pushing forward with the regulatory checks needed before launching a payment service. In November, Twitter registered with the US Treasury as a payments processor, according to a regulatory filing. It had now also begun to apply for some of the state licences it would need in order to launch, these people said.

Shortly after he acquired the tech company, Musk hinted that a payment processor would be coming soon. “The man who reinvented the payment system back in 1999 is all set to do it again,” tweeted ‘DogeDesigner’ on Twitter. Musk responded to the tweet, agreeing that he would be reinventing the payment system again. “It’s gonna be great,” Musk said.

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“..80% of the Pfizer deaths have come from ~30% of lots, whereas 80% of the Moderna deaths have come from 20% of lots…”

Who Will be Spared from COVID-19 Vaccine Injury? (McCullough)

Americans have become numb with newsreels of sudden cardiac death, blood clots, stroke, seizures, hospitalization, and death after COVID-19 vaccination. Many have vowed to decline future boosters and get off the vaccination train. However, a common question is: will I be spared? A Zobgy survey in 2022 found that 15% of individuals who took a COVID-19 vaccine had some new medical problem for which they were seeking care.1 A concordant survey done by Dr. Mark Skidmore at Michigan State University found that 22% of Americans knew someone who was seriously damaged by the vaccines.2 The CDC V-Safe data showed that 7-8% of those who took received a COVID-19 vaccine had to seek urgent care from an emergency department or similar facility.

These data suggest that ~85% of those who have received COVID-19 vaccines have no significant problems, and ~15% have been damaged. While this number is unacceptably high, and the vaccine campaign should be stopped, many are wondering now: “why me?” There are almost certainly factors related to the vaccine product that plays a role. In general, Moderna with 100 mcg of mRNA appears to be more toxic than Pfizer with 30 mcg of mRNA.Janssen seems to be similar acutely to Pfizer, but with a better longer-term safety profile. Novavax, with 5 mcg of purified Spike protein, appears to have the most favorable safety profile with no genetic material being injected into the body.

It has been reported that 80% of the Pfizer deaths have come from ~30% of lots, whereas 80% of the Moderna deaths have come from 20% of lots. Thus, the lot number must be a proxy for mRNA content, contaminants, or some other factor related to the product. Patient susceptibility factors make a syndrome more likely to be expressed if it is going to occur. For example, a family or personal history of a genetic blood clotting disorder, use of estrogens, obesity, and immobility make a person more likely to develop severe thromboembolic syndromes after vaccination. Atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease makes it more likely for the vaccines to cause a heart attack or stroke. Baseline cardiomyopathy, mutations in various ion channels, and possibly internal adrenalin during sleep or sports may trigger vaccine-induced myocarditis and sudden death.

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Starting to look that way.

Did 7.5 Million People Die From Covid Shots? (Horowitz)

There is simply no macro epidemiological evidence that the COVID jabs saved any lives from the virus. To the contrary, there are numerous data points showing negative efficacy. Moreover, over 70% of the 6.75 million recorded COVID deaths occurred precisely after the shots were unleashed. In fact, many parts of the world that barely experienced COVID deaths during the first year, such as Scandinavia, Australia, and far East Asia, incurred almost all of their deaths after the shots were in the arms of every senior. So now that we established there was no mortality benefit, what was the cost? What if I told you it was 7.5 million – even more than the recorded number of COVID deaths? A new peer-reviewed study from Michigan State University estimated that as of Dec. 18, 2021, the time of the survey, 278,000 Americans died of reactions to the jabs.

The study, published last week in BMC Infectious Diseases, used Dynata, the world’s largest first-party data platform, to create a random sample of 2,840 Americans to report their experience with the shots: 15% of those surveyed indicated they had experienced a health issue after vaccination, and 13% of those indicated that a severe adverse event had occurred, in line with many other surveys. Using extrapolations from the survey juxtaposed to state-by-state VAERS deaths, the researcher estimates that, as of Dec. 18, 2021, there were a total of 278,000 vaccine fatalities in the U.S. Further, “severe” adverse events are estimated to be about one million nationwide, and “less severe” adverse events are about 2.1 million. Estimated nationwide fatalities, “severe” injuries, and “less severe” injuries tally to 3.4 million.

This is just after the first year of the vaccine. The results should shock the conscience of the public. So how many died in the world over two years of vaccination? Using the numbers from Our World in Data, 493 million doses of the vaccine were administered in the U.S. at the time of the Michigan State survey. So, if 493 million doses were enough to kill 278 thousand Americans, how many would have died at the same rate globally from the beginning until today? At 13.24 billion doses administered globally, that would result in 7.47 million vaccine fatalities, more than the Holocaust! That would be in addition to 27 million severe injuries globally!

What is shockingly eerie about this projection is that it’s almost identical to what I estimated in terms of the global death toll two months ago based on the CDC’s V-SAFE data demonstrating an underreporting factor in VAERS of 26. Using the URF of 26, and multiplying for the global doses administered, I estimated a back-of-the-envelope total of 7.855 million COVID shot deaths globally. Using this extrapolation just for the U.S. based on the total current number of doses, it would work out to about 372,000 deaths in the U.S. Some estimate as many as 550,000 non-COVID excess deaths, which could demonstrate potentially an even higher death toll.

Insurance analyst

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“..failed to find even a modest effect on infection or illness rates from masks of all qualities..”

Massive Mask Meta-study Undermines Remaining Covid Mandates (JTN)

An international research collaboration that reviewed several dozen rigorous studies of “physical interventions” against influenza and COVID-19 through last year failed to find even a modest effect on infection or illness rates from masks of all qualities. Published in the peer-reviewed Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, run by the British evidence-based medicine charity Cochrane, the study raises new doubts about ongoing mask mandates and public health recommendations worldwide. The CDC is still recommending masking in areas with “high” transmission levels — fewer than 4% of U.S. counties — as well as indoor masking to protect high-risk contacts in “medium” counties (27%).

Masks are still required in educational institutions in Democratic strongholds such as New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Washington and California, according to the Daily Mail. Boston Public Schools denied its “temporary masking protocol” in early January was a “mandate,” following a public letter against the policy by student Enrique Abud Evereteze. South Korea is still requiring masks on public transport and in medical facilities after dropping COVID mandates in most indoor settings, including gyms, Monday, Reuters reported. The researchers for the Cochrane study are affiliated with a geographically disparate range of institutions in the U.K., Canada, Australia, Italy and Saudi Arabia. Half are affiliated with the Institute for Evidence-Based Healthcare at Australia’s Bond University. The corresponding author is the University of Calgary’s John Conly.

The team added 11 new randomized controlled trials and “cluster-RCTs,” which randomize groups of subjects rather than individuals, to its prior review from November 2020, for a total of 78 studies. The additions included COVID pandemic trials: two from Mexico and one each from England, Norway, Denmark and Bangladesh, the latter two well known internationally. The Danish study had trouble finding a major journal willing to publish its controversial findings that wearing surgical masks had no statistically significant effect on infection rates, even among those who claimed to wear them “exactly as instructed.” Mainstream media overlooked red flags in the Bangladeshi mask study, which found no effect for surgical masks under age 50 and a difference of only 20 infections between control and treatment groups among 342,000 adults.

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Very interesting. But there’s still no profit in IVM.

How Ivermectin Kills Prostate Cancer Cells (PR)

I spent the first semester of my course, The Biology of Cancer, reviewing all of the aspects of The Hallmarks of Cancer. This morning, firing up Pubmed to continue preparing my lecture prostate cancer, I found this gem of a study, which happens to be a collaboration between my former employer, The University of Pittsburgh, and Southern Medical University-Guangzhou. I don’t know the authors:


Title: “Integrated analysis reveals FOXA1 and Ku70/Ku80 as targets of ivermectin in prostate cancer” The authors exposed various prostate cancer cells lines to Ivermectin and found that ivermectin binds to two proteins: FOXA1 and Ku70/Ku80. This leads to the inhibition of androgen receptor (AR), E2F1 expression, and DNA damage repair activity. The cells stopped dividing (G0/G1 cell cycle arrest), experience extensive DNA damage, and die. A retrospective study of the rates of cancer and rates of death from cancer among unvaccinated people who prophylactically used Ivermectin over a long period of time vs those who did not is in order.

Study Abstract:


Ivermectin is a widely used antiparasitic drug and shows promising anticancer activity in various cancer types. Although multiple signaling pathways modulated by ivermectin have been identified in tumor cells, few studies have focused on the exact target of ivermectin. Herein, we report the pharmacological effects and targets of ivermectin in prostate cancer. Ivermectin caused G0/G1 cell cycle arrest, induced cell apoptosis and DNA damage, and decreased androgen receptor (AR) signaling in prostate cancer cells. Further in vivo analysis showed ivermectin could suppress 22RV1 xenograft progression. Using integrated omics profiling, including RNA-seq and thermal proteome profiling, the forkhead box protein A1 (FOXA1) and non-homologous end joining (NHEJ) repair executer Ku70/Ku80 were strongly suggested as direct targets of ivermectin in prostate cancer. The interaction of ivermectin and FOXA1 reduced the chromatin accessibility of AR signaling and the G0/G1 cell cycle regulator E2F1, leading to cell proliferation inhibition. The interaction of ivermectin and Ku70/Ku80 impaired the NHEJ repair ability. Cooperating with the downregulation of homologous recombination repair ability after AR signaling inhibition, ivermectin increased intracellular DNA double-strand breaks and finally triggered cell death. Our findings demonstrate the anticancer effect of ivermectin in prostate cancer, indicating that its use may be a new therapeutic approach for prostate cancer.

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“..multiple quanta have inherent properties that are both indeterminate, but the properties of each one aren’t independent of the other..”

Quantum Entanglement Just Got A Whole Lot Weirder (Siegel)

In the quantum Universe, things behave very differently than our common experience would suggest. In the macroscopic world we’re familiar with, any object we can measure appears to have intrinsic properties that are independent of whether we observe it or not. We can measure things like mass, position, motion, duration, etc., without worrying about whether that object is affected by our measurements; reality exists completely independently of the observer. But in the quantum world, that’s demonstrably not true. The act of measuring a system fundamentally changes its properties in an irrevocable way. One of the weirdest quantum properties of all is entanglement: where multiple quanta have inherent properties that are both indeterminate, but the properties of each one aren’t independent of the other.

We’ve seen this demonstrated for photons, electrons, and all sorts of identical particles before, enabling us to test and probe the fundamental and surprising nature of reality. In fact, the 2022 Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded precisely for investigations into this phenomenon. But in a novel experiment, quantum entanglement has just been demonstrated between different particles for the first time, and already the technique has been used to see an atom’s nucleus like never before. In principle, quantum entanglement is a simple idea to understand, and it’s built on the idea of quantum indeterminism. Imagine you pull a ball out of a hat, and there’s a 50/50 chance that the ball has one of two properties.

• Perhaps it’s color: the ball could be black or white. • Perhaps it’s mass: either you pulled out a light ball or a heavy ball. • Perhaps it’s which direction it’s spinning: the ball could be “spin up” or “spin down.” If you only had one ball, you might wonder: upon pulling it out and examining the ball, did it always have those properties, even before you looked at it? Or did the ball have a set of indeterminate parameters, where it was a mix of: • black-and-white • light-and-heavy, • and spinning as a mix of both up-and-down, that was only determined at the instant you took the critical measurement?

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Thessaloniki 2023 Greece

 

 


The regal moth (Citheronia regalis), also called the royal walnut moth or the hickory horned devil, is one of the largest moths in North America. Its caterpillar can grow up to 15 centimetres (5.9 in) long

 

 


Jellyfish don’t have hearts, brains, or blood and have been that way for more than 650 million years. Photo: Jeff Hamilton

 

 


Charles Darwin brought back a 5 year old Tortoise named Harriet from the Galápagos Islands that would be later owned by Steve Irwin. Harriet died in 2006 at the age of 176

 

 

Up

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Jan 222023
 
 January 22, 2023  Posted by at 10:00 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  58 Responses »


Joseph Mallord William Turner The Fifth Plague of Egypt 1800

 

Six More Classified Documents Discovered At Biden House (ZH)
DOJ Seizes More Classified Docs From Biden’s Wilmington Home (Fox)
Joe Biden Took Classified Documents Home When He Was a Senator (CTH)
World Moving Closer To ‘Irreversible’ Disaster – Chomsky (RT)
Ukraine – Russian Army Activates Southern Front (MoA)
Fighting Russia ‘Very, Very Difficult’ For Ukraine – Gen. Milley (RT)
Russian Casualties In Ukraine Have Hit 188,000 – US Intel (Az.)
US Attempts To Seek Latin America’s Russian Arms Supplies To Kiev (TASS)
Duma Speaker Warns Of Powerful Retaliation For Weapons Supplies To Kiev (TASS)
Russians’ Level Of Trust In Putin Exceeds 78% (TASS)
Twitter Lost 80% Of Its Workforce Under Elon Musk (Az.)
Twitter Files Prove America Headed for ‘Totalitarian State Territory’ (ET)
EU Car Sales Collapse – Industry Body (RT)
GMC Blinks First: Regulator Declines to Investigate Dr Aseem Malhotra (DS)
Japan Declares It Will Handle COVID-19 Like a Seasonal Flu (GP)

 

 

 

 

The Year of the Tiger has given way to the Year of the Rabbit.

 

 

German MP

 

 

Dowd

 

 

 

 

Scott Adams
https://twitter.com/i/status/1616949618725781506

 

 

 

 

Well, more docs. And more obfuscation. Whereas Trump’s home was raided, Biden is said to have ”offered access to his home” (after more than 2 months. Lots of write-ups, here are two. I went to the CNN homepage, crickets.

BTW, it’s not “Six More Classified Documents”, but “six items consisting of documents with classification markings and surrounding materials”. Yes, that could mean 1000 documents.

Six More Classified Documents Discovered At Biden House (ZH)

The Department of Justice found “six items consisting of documents with classification markings” during a Friday search of President Joe Biden’s home in Wilmington, Delaware, according to a Saturday statement by the president’s personal lawyers. Also found were notes from Biden’s time as a Senator, as well as his tenure as Vice President, according to a statement from Biden attorney Bob Bauer, which strategically leads with ‘we’ve fully cooperated!’ The search lasted from 9:45 a.m. until 10:30 p.m. Friday, during which members of Biden’s personal legal tam were present along with members from the Office of the White House counsel, according to the statement. The DOJ also took materials “for further review.” The new documents mark the latest development in the scandal involving classified documents found at non-authorized locations used by Biden. The first batch of papers was discovered in early November, the day before midterm elections, at the Penn Biden Center. More documents marked classified were found at his Wilmington, Delaware home in December – and then earlier this month, an additional batch of papers was found at the home. “

The Justice Department didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment. Department officials earlier considered having FBI agents monitor a search by Mr. Biden’s lawyers for classified documents at his homes but decided against it, both to avoid complicating later stages of the investigation and because Mr. Biden’s attorneys had quickly turned over a first batch and were cooperating, the Journal reported this week. Some law enforcement officials had discussed the possibility of asking Mr. Biden’s team for consent to have the FBI search the property themselves. Officials didn’t immediately take that step in part to preserve their freedom to take a tougher line later, including by executing a search warrant, the Journal reported. Instead, the two sides agreed that Mr. Biden’s personal attorneys would inspect the homes, notify the Justice Department as soon as they identified any other potentially classified records, and arrange for law-enforcement authorities to take them. -Wall Street Journal”

So, Biden’s personal attorneys searched the house themselves, said they turned everything over to the DOJ, and yet more were found? When Trump’s lawyers did that he was raided by the FBI.

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13 hour search covered “all working, living and storage spaces in the home.” What are the odds more will be “discovered” next week?

DOJ Seizes More Classified Docs From Biden’s Wilmington Home (Fox)

The Justice Department seized additional classified records from President Biden’s Wilmington, Delaware home after an FBI search on Friday, Fox News has learned. “On Jan. 20, 2023, the FBI executed a planned, consensual search of the President’s residence in Wilmington, Delaware,” Joseph D. Fitzpatrick, an assistant U.S. attorney to U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Illinois John Lausch, told Fox News Saturday. Lausch was the DOJ official running the investigation into Biden’s improper retention of classified records ahead of the appointment of Special Counsel Robert Hur. Fox News has learned Lausch is still playing an integral role in the probe as Hur gets up to speed. The FBI search began Friday morning at 9:45 a.m. and concluded Friday night around 10:30 p.m.


Biden’s personal attorney Bob Bauer said Saturday evening the search covered “all working, living and storage spaces in the home.” “At the outset of this matter, the President directed his personal attorneys to fully cooperate with the Department of Justice,” Bauer said. “Accordingly, having previously identified and reported to DOJ a small number of documents with classification markings at the President’s Wilmington home, and in the interest of moving the process forward as expeditiously as possible, we offered to provide prompt access to his home to allow DOJ to conduct a search of the entire premises for potential vice-presidential records and potential classified material.” Bauer said that by agreement with the Justice Department, representatives of both Biden’s personal legal team and the White House Counsel’s Office were present for the search. Neither the president nor the first lady were present during the search.

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Don’t be fooled by comparisons between Trump and Biden classified docs. Trump was president when he took them home, and the criminal probe will address the legality of that. Biden took them as Senator and VP. 100% illegal.

Ted Cruz: on Twitter “This says some of the docs are from his Senate service. Serious Q: how on earth did he do that? I’ve served in the Senate for 10 years. EVERY single classified doc I’ve read—100%—have been in a secure SCIF in the basement of the Capitol. What the hell??”

Note: chief of staff Ron Klain is leaving, and more Obama insiders are lined up for the job.

Joe Biden Took Classified Documents Home When He Was a Senator (CTH)

According to multiple media report [See Here and See Here] Joe Biden’s attorneys coordinated a friendly FBI search their client’s Delaware residence. Lawyers for Biden were present and overseeing the FBI review of the home, when additional classified documents were discovered. Interestingly, the Biden lawyers seemingly admit their client had been taking classified documents home for quite some time. According to their statement: “DOJ took possession of materials it deemed within the scope of its inquiry, including six items consisting of documents with classification markings and surrounding materials, some of which were from the President’s service in the Senate and some of which were from his tenure as Vice President. DOJ also took for further review personally handwritten notes from the vice-presidential years.”

That statement was written by Joe Biden’s personal attorney, Bob Bauer. That’s interesting on many levels, including the fact that Bob Bauer is married to Anita Dunn. Mrs. Anita Dunn is one of the original people who helped put Barack Obama in the White House; and Dunn worked with President Obama throughout his terms. Additionally, Anita Dunn is on the short list to replace Biden’s outgoing Chief of Staff, Ron Klain. Many people have wondered if Joe Biden was being set up for failure over this classified document scandal. In my opinion, the entire operation is being managed – but not to remove Biden, simply to control him and ensure he doesn’t run again.

When it comes to the insurance of their ideological long-term goals, democrats play cutthroat politics much better than most imagine. Ask Bernie Sanders what it’s like to be viewed as an impediment to the ideological quest, and what lengths his party will take to cut you down. Now overlay Joe Biden’s personal lawyer, Bob Bauer. Think about who exactly it was discovering these documents and why. If Obama is the silent partner in the background of the Biden administration, then Dunn is the operational manager. If Dunn is the operational manager, then her husband is very useful as the principle’s attorney. From the big picture, it sure looks like Bauer is playing the role of Brutus.

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“the deterioration of an arena of rational serious debate and deliberation”

World Moving Closer To ‘Irreversible’ Disaster – Chomsky (RT)

The world is teetering on the brink of the abyss due to an increased risk of nuclear war, failure to address environmental challenges, and diminished ability to tackle problems rationally, world-renowned philosopher and linguist Noam Chomsky told RT on Saturday. During the interview, Chomsky, who is Laureate Professor of Linguistics at the University of Arizona, was asked to expand on his remark that humanity could be pathologically dedicated to self-destruction. The philosopher recalled that in recent years the Doomsday Clock, which reflects how close humanity is to Armageddon, has moved closer to midnight, which symbolizes the extinction of humanity. He suggested that in several days it could be set even closer to this mark.

According to the philosopher, humanity’s main concerns are “an increasing threat of nuclear war” and “a very severe and growing threat of destruction of climate.” The latter problem persists because “states are not doing what they know they must do to solve this crisis,” he said. The third issue, Chomsky continued, is “the deterioration of an arena of rational serious debate and deliberation” combined with “the collapse of democratic forces” around the world. The professor admitted that while it might seem that this point has nothing to do with the threat of nuclear war and climate change, rational debate is “the only hope for dealing with the first two.”

“All three have gotten considerably worse during the past year, and unless there’s a sharp reversal, we’ll simply be heading for a precipice, falling over, irreversible, and not in the long distant future,” he warned. His comments come after earlier this week, former Russian president Dmitry Medvedev said that those who want to see Moscow defeated in Ukraine, ignore the fact that “a loss by a nuclear power in a conventional war may trigger the start of a nuclear war.” Moscow believes the Ukraine conflict to be a proxy war waged against it by the US and its allies. However, Russia has repeatedly said that a nuclear war should never be fought, with its military doctrine allowing the use of atomic weapons only if the very existence of the state is threatened.

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“Russia’s Wagner forces have surrounded Bakhmut, lynchpin of ‘Zelensky Line’ [Ukr deployments in Donbass.] US media has begun backtracking on Bakhmut’s importance, anticipating its imminent fall into Russian hands & preparing opinion. A crushing defeat for US-UK axis in Ukraine.”

“The forces which are currently getting mauled in the Bakhmut area constitute 50% of Ukraine’s battle ready forces..”

Ukraine – Russian Army Activates Southern Front (MoA)

The long expected Russian offensive in Ukraine has begun. The Ukrainian army, egged on by its U.S. controllers, had put most of its resource into the static defense of the Bakhmut (Artyomovsk) – Soledar sector of the eastern front. An insane number of Ukrainian brigades, though many partially depleted, were concentrated on that 50 kilometer long front. This left other sectors nearly empty of Ukrainian troops. I count the equivalent of some 27 brigade size formations in that area. The usual size of a brigade is some 3,000 to 4,000 men with hundreds of all kinds of vehicles. If all brigades had their full strength that force would count as 97,500 men. In a recent interview the Ukrainian military commander Zaluzhny said that his army has 200,000 men trained to fight with 500,000 more having other functions or currently being trained.

The forces which are currently getting mauled in the Bakhmut area constitute 50% of Ukraine’s battle ready forces. On the southern and northern sectors of the battle-line the Ukrainian forces have been thinned out and are only able to defend against minor forces. The Ukrainian forces in the north and south are in the same position Russian troops had been in when the Ukrainian army last year launched a blitz attack in the Kharkiv region. The Russian screening force of some 2,000 boarder guards and federal police retreated and used its artillery to destroy the oncoming Ukrainian forces. The attack ran out of power and came to a halt after progressing some 70 kilometers on a rather large front. But Ukraine no longer has, unlike the Russians at that time, the artillery that is need to stop a larger thrust.


The big Ukrainian concentration in Bakhmut is now in an operational encirclement. The Russian forces have progressed north and south of the city and their artillery can easily control the western exit roads of Bakhmut. This a Verdun like situation. Russian artillery is by far numerical superior and can slaughter the Ukrainian troops at will. Even the U.S. military is now suggesting that Ukraine should give up on that city. Should the government in Kiev agree to that it will be a retreat under fire with likely high casualties. Not retreating though will make things even worse.

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A good cop, bad cop routine.

“Asked in November whether Ukraine stood a chance of retaking its pre-February territory, he said that the probability of this outcome “is not high, militarily.”

Fighting Russia ‘Very, Very Difficult’ For Ukraine – Gen. Milley (RT)

Ukraine will struggle to make good on its promise to drive Russian forces out of its former territory, US Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley stated on Friday. While civilian officials in Washington insist that Kiev must keep fighting, Milley has repeatedly questioned the chances of success. “President Biden, President Zelensky, and most of the leaders of Europe have said this war is likely to end in a negotiation,” Milley said during a meeting of the US-led Defense Contact Group at Ramstein Air Base in Germany on Friday. “From a military standpoint, this is a very, very difficult fight,” he added. The US alone has allocated more than $110 billion in military and economic aid to Kiev since last February – supplying Ukraine with progressively heavier armaments, including infantry fighting vehicles, anti-air systems, and more than a million artillery shells.

Although Ukraine’s NATO-trained troops appear on the cusp of receiving Western-designed main battle tanks, Russian forces have inflicted a series of crushing defeats on Kiev’s military in recent weeks. The strategically important Donbass settlements of Soledar and Klescheevka have both fallen to Moscow’s troops, and the key city of Artyomovsk is now facing Russian encirclement. “I still maintain that for this year, it would be very, very difficult to militarily eject the Russian forces from every inch of Russian-occupied Ukraine,” Milley said on Friday, referring to the four former regions of Ukraine that voted to join Russia in September, and Crimea, an historic Russian territory that voted to rejoin the Russian Federation in 2014.

“That doesn’t mean it can’t happen, doesn’t mean it won’t happen. But it’d be very, very difficult.” Retaking all of this land – including Crimea – is a stated objective of Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky. To that end, Zelensky has the support of the US, with President Joe Biden and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin vowing to bankroll his military for “as long as it takes,” and Secretary of State Antony Blinken declaring in December that “fundamentally, Ukrainians are making the decisions” about whether they want to attempt to capture Crimea or not. However, Milley’s public statements have been more tempered than those of Biden and his cabinet. Asked in November whether Ukraine stood a chance of retaking its pre-February territory, he said that the probability of this outcome “is not high, militarily.”

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These are obviously nonsense numbers.

Gonzalo Lira: “Actual Russian casualties? No one knows for sure. But credible estimates put them at no more than 20,000 KIA, 60,000 WIA.”

Macgregor in the video: 157,000 Ukraine deaths. And we know there are 5-10 times more Ukraine victims than Russian.

Russian Casualties In Ukraine Have Hit 188,000 – US Intel (Az.)

Russian casualties in Ukraine have hit an eye-watering 188,000 according to United States intelligence, Report informs via The Sun. Report informs via The Sun that the massive new figure of those killed or injured in battle was shared with allies at yesterday’s Western summit to drum up support for Ukraine held at Ramstein Air Base in Southern Germany. It is a significant increase on the publicly estimated 100,000 Russian soldiers killed, wounded, or deserted since last February’s invasion that the UK’s Defence Secretary Ben Wallace outlined at the end of last year. Top US General Mark Milley said Russia has suffered a “tremendous amount of casualties” – but stopped short of revealing the exact figure publicly. He said: “They have really suffered a lot.. I would say significantly well over 100,000.” Yesterday ministers and military chiefs from around 50 nations took part in the talks convened by US defence secretary Lloyd Austin at Ramstein – the main US airbase in Europe.

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Old, rusty, in need of repair, but at least Ukrainians know how to use them.

US Attempts To Seek Latin America’s Russian Arms Supplies To Kiev (TASS)

Russia will keep a close eye on the US attempts to urge Latin American countries to hand over weapons to Ukraine, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Friday. The Russian presidential spokesman thus commented on a statement by a Pentagon representative that Washington was working with nine Latin American countries to urge them to hand over available Russian weapons to Ukraine in exchange for the delivery of US equipment. Responding to a question about whether this news came as a surprise for Moscow, the Kremlin spokesman said: “In general, it is hard today to imagine anything that can be a surprise.”


“Here it is very important [to bear in mind] the legal restrictions of any deliveries to third countries. This is because any deliveries are, of course, conditioned by certain commitments of those countries that receive military equipment,” Peskov pointed out. “Of course, we will keep a close eye on this situation,” the Kremlin press secretary said. Commander of the US Southern Command General Laura Richardson announced on Thursday that Venezuela, Cuba, Nicaragua and six other Latin American countries had Russian military equipment and Washington was working “to replace that with US equipment if those countries want to donate it to Ukraine.”

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“Given the technological superiority of Russian weapons, Western politicians who have been making such decisions should realize that this may lead to a global disaster that would wipe out their countries..”

Duma Speaker Warns Of Powerful Retaliation For Weapons Supplies To Kiev (TASS)

Weapons supplies to Ukraine by the United States and NATO for attacks on Russia would lead to retaliatory use of more powerful armaments, State Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin warned on Sunday. “Supplies of offensive weapons to the Kiev regime would lead to a global disaster. If Washington and NATO countries send arms that will be used for attacks on peaceful cities or attempts at occupying our lands, a threat they have been making, this would provoke retaliatory measures with the use of more powerful weapons,” Volodin wrote on his Telegram channel. The senior Russian lawmaker slammed as untenable other countries’ arguments that “nuclear powers never used weapons of mass destruction in local conflicts.” “Those powers never faced a situation where the security of their citizens or their territorial integrity was at stake,” he argued.


The State Duma speaker called on members of the US Congress, Germany’s Bundestag, France’s National Assembly and other European parliamentarians to realize their responsibility for humankind. “By their decisions, Washington and Brussels are pushing the world to a disastrous war – to military operations that will be quite different from what they have seen so far, when only military and critical infrastructure being used by the Kiev regime has been attacked. Given the technological superiority of Russian weapons, Western politicians who have been making such decisions should realize that this may lead to a global disaster that would wipe out their countries,” Volodin concluded.

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Try that with your leaders wherever you live.

Russians’ Level Of Trust In Putin Exceeds 78% (TASS)

The Russian public’s level of confidence in President Vladimir Putin fell by 0.3 percentage points to 78.1% on January 9-15, according to a poll released by the All-Russia Public Opinion Research Center on Friday. “When asked if they trusted Putin, 78.1% of the poll’s participants said ‘yes’ (a 0.3 percentage point drop from a rating referring to December 26-30, 2022). The share of people who approve of the way the president is handling his job rose by 0.3 percentage points to 75.2%,” the pollster said. A total of 50.5% of those polled said they approved of the Russian government’s work (a 0.6 percentage point increase) and 53.2% approved of Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin’s work (a 0.4 percentage point rise). As many as 62.6% of respondents said they trusted Mishustin (a 0.8 percentage point increase).


As for the leaders of the parliamentary parties, 32.5% of those surveyed trust leader of the Russian Communist Party Gennady Zyuganov (a 0.9 percentage point rise), 28.9% trust leader of the A Just Russia – For Truth party Sergey Mironov (a 3.5 percentage point drop), 8.2% said they trusted Chairman of the New People party Alexey Nechayev (1.7 percentage point fall) and 17.2% of the poll’s participants trust leader of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDPR) Leonid Slutsky (a 2.4 percentage point rise). The level of popular support for the United Russia party stood at 38.8% (a 0.4 percentage point rise). The level increased by 0.2 percentage points to 10.6% for the Russian Communist Party and fell by 0.2 percentage points to 3.9% for the New People party.

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“..the trust and safety team includes fewer than 20 full-time employees..”

Twitter Lost 80% Of Its Workforce Under Elon Musk (Az.)

The number of employees at Twitter has decreased by about 80% since US entrepreneur Elon Musk’s multibillion-dollar acquisition. Report informs via foreign media that before Musk finalized the $44 billion acquisition of Twitter in late October, 2022, the San Francisco-based company had about 7,500 employees, but that number has gone down to approximately 1,300 active employees, CNBC said on Friday. Twitter now has fewer than 550 full-time engineers and the trust and safety team includes fewer than 20 full-time employees.

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Yep.

Twitter Files Prove America Headed for ‘Totalitarian State Territory’ (ET)

Thanks to the revelations in the Twitter Files, there’s evidence that the FBI and other agencies worked to suppress “lawful speech,” and if this type of action is allowed to continue, the United States is headed for “totalitarian state territory,” Matthew Peterson, the cofounder of New Founding, said in an interview with Epoch Times–NTD collaborative program “Newsmakers.” New Founding helps people and organizations position themselves to avoid threats from Big Tech and “woke capital,” and Peterson has two decades of experience in digital media and political consulting. When asked what will happen if the country’s current trajectory continues for three to five years, Peterson said, “We’ll be in totalitarian state territory, there’s no question about it.”


“I mean, remember, this went so far as the government saying, ‘You need to find evidence that there are Russians influencing the election on Twitter.’ And Twitter saying, ‘No, that’s not happening.’ “And then [Twitter had] to be quiet about it and not even defend themselves when they knew that there wasn’t Russian interference that they could find,” he added. Peterson further explained that the U.S. government drove a narrative that it knew wasn’t true and was the “antithesis” of America’s founding principles. “[The government’s actions are] the antithesis of America. The American founding is basically contradicted by what’s happening here, over and over again. And if we don’t do something about that, we will not have free speech in this country,” Peterson warned.

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Mostly EU cars.

EU Car Sales Collapse – Industry Body (RT)

The European Union passenger car market contracted by 4.6% last year to just 9.3 million units, which is the region’s lowest level since 1993, the European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA) reported this week. According to the report, the slump was mainly due to the impact of component shortages in the first half of the year. The market, however, improved from August to December, with new car registrations expanding by 12.8% in the last month of the year. Overall, in 2022 only Germany managed to post growth (+1.1%) among the EU’s four largest markets. It was helped by the strong result in December, the ACEA said. The other three markets all performed worse than in 2021, with Italy posting the steepest decline (-9.7%), followed by France (-7.8%) and Spain (-5.4%).


Data showed that the number of vehicles registered in EU countries (excluding Malta, for which statistics are not available) rose to more than 896,000 units last month from over 795,000 a year earlier. Car sales by the Volkswagen Group (including Skoda, Audi, Seat, Porsche, and others) in the European Union decreased by 5.2% last year, the ACEA said. Automaker Stellantis saw its sales nosedive by 14.1%, while Renault Group sales fell by 4.3%, and BMW sales by 5.1%. Mercedes-Benz sales stood practically at the same level as in 2021, at 549,023 units. Meanwhile, South Korean Hyundai (including Kia) increased its vehicle sales in the EU by 2.6%, Japanese Toyota and Honda sales grew by 7.7% and 4.4%, respectively. Sales by American carmaker Ford decreased by 2.3%.


Most popular cars Europe vs US

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More than blinking.

GMC Blinks First: Regulator Declines to Investigate Dr Aseem Malhotra (DS)

To paraphrase the Sound of Music song, “How do we solve a problem like Malhotra?” After receiving several complaints, the General Medical Council has decided not to investigate cardiologist Dr. Aseem Malhotra, who has become a thorn in the side of the medical profession. Professional regulators have been at the forefront of pandemic discipline, contributing to a culture of fear among practitioners. Severe action has been taken against registrants who criticise or do not comply with the official narrative. I know this from my experience as an officer of the Workers of England Union, representing members brought before the Nursing and Midwifery Council on charges of bringing the profession into disrepute. Apparently the public must be protected against nurses who don’t believe that masks stop airborne respiratory viruses, or who believe in informed consent for novel mRNA vaccines.

A significant strike against this censorial tyranny was by general practitioner Sam White last year. Dr. White was ordered, as a condition of maintaining his clinical licence, to delete his social media posts about COVID-19 and to refrain from making similar comments. Dr. White took the GMC to the High Court and won. The condition was overturned as a breach of his rights to freedom of expression under the Human Rights Act 1998. Whereas White was an early critic of COVID-19 policy, Malhotra is a relatively recent convert. Initially he promoted the vaccine, but when his fit and healthy father died shortly after receiving the injections, Malhotra changed his mind and began speaking out against the mass vaccination programme.

His personal loss came alongside his observation in clinical practice of a marked increase in myocarditis cases (as well as blood clots and other cardiac complications). Malhotra had a review paper published on this phenomenon, and his findings of iatrogenic harm are corroborated by other medical scientists. sMalhotra has repeatedly urged suspension of the vaccination programme until the risks are better understood. He became a darling of vaccine sceptics, with his charismatic and compassionate voice doing the rounds of alt media channels and independent-minded broadcasters working for more mainstream channels (such as Tucker Carlson’s show on Fox News, and Neil Oliver on GB News). However, he was ignored by the legacy media, and it was not until two weeks ago, when he took the opportunity of a BBC interview on statins, that his call was more widely heard.

Malhotra

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Lots of doctors speaking out in Japan.

Japan Declares It Will Handle COVID-19 Like a Seasonal Flu (GP)

Prime Minister Fumio Kishida of Japan announced on Friday that he had instructed his cabinet to reclassify COVID-19, placing it in the same category as seasonal flu, rubella, and chickenpox in spring. “Today, we held a press conference on the discussion on revising the new coronavirus infectious disease into category 5,” Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said Friday. “In order to further advance the efforts of ‘living with Corona’ and restore Japan to a state of normalcy, we will transition the various policies and measures to date in phases,” Kishida said. In Japan, Covid-19 is currently listed as “Category 2: Very Dangerous” together with tuberculosis, avian flu, and diphtheria.


“COVID-19 is currently classified as “equivalent to category 2,” requiring that hospitals and clinics report the names of infected patients and the details of their diagnosis before making recommendations regarding hospitalization. The soaring numbers of people infected in Japan’s seventh coronavirus wave have increased the administrative burden on the medical front line, leading to regional medical associations and the National Governors’ Association to repeatedly call for a review of the system,” Nippon.com reported. The outlet added that experts have proposed that COVID-19 be reclassified as a “Category 5: Diseases for which outbreaks and spread should be prevented,” similar to seasonal flu, which would restrict reporting to only those at high risk of developing severe symptoms or restrict data collection to only patients diagnosed at designated medical facilities.

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Martha Stewart

 

 

Kory treatment

 

 

 

 

WTF

 

 

Great hornbill

 

 

Flycatcher

 

 

 

 

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Jan 192023
 
 January 19, 2023  Posted by at 9:40 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  88 Responses »


Theo van Doesburg Counter-Construction 1923

 

US May Assist Ukrainian Strikes On Crimea – NYT (RT)
NATO Inflates Russia Threat To Justify Its Existence – Chinese Media (TASS)
Putin: Victory In Ukraine Is “Unavoidable” (ZH)
West Expects Ukraine To ‘Succeed On The Battlefield’ – Blinken (TASS)
‘Fragmented World’ Sleepwalks Into World War III (Escobar)
West ‘Tired’ Of Ukraine Situation – Poland (RT)
Lavrov Lambasts Zelensky’s ‘Absurd’ Ideas Of How To Settle Conflict (TASS)
Russia Posts Record Current Account Surplus (RT)
Saudi Arabia Ready To Ditch Dollar In Trade – Finance Minister (RT)
500 Advertisers Paused Spending At Twitter, Daily Revenue Plunges 40% (ZH)
Microsoft Announces Mass Layoffs (RT)
John Kerry Fuels Davos Controversy With ‘ET’ Speech (RT)
Against the Tide (Jim Kunstler)
The Biden Scam Unravels (Denninger)
Hunter Biden Lived In Classified Doc House While Raking In Chinese Millions (ZH)
After 4 Shots Covid Jabs Sharply Reduced Immune Function In Mice (Berenson)
Jacinda Ardern Resigns As New Zealand’s Prime Minister (PM)

 

 

 

 

Arestovich

 

 

 

 

Tucker FAA
https://twitter.com/i/status/1615605196280799235

 

 

 

 

All Vaccinated Will Die Soon
https://twitter.com/i/status/1615160992371019782

 

 

What?
https://twitter.com/i/status/1615754513994125314

 

 

 

 

 

 

“..willingness to help Ukraine “go on the offense – including targeting Crimea.”

US May Assist Ukrainian Strikes On Crimea – NYT (RT)

The US government is weighing whether to supply Ukraine with the capability to attack the strategically important Crimean Peninsula, according to the New York Times. The discussions highlight a gradual shift among US officials toward more brazen support for Kiev, even as Washington insists it does not seek confrontation with Moscow. Following months of hesitation, the White House is now warming up to the idea that Ukraine may “need the power” for strikes deep inside Russian territory, namely its military stronghold in Crimea, the Times reported on Wednesday, citing several unnamed US officials.

“American officials are discussing with their Ukrainian counterparts the use of American-supplied weapons, from HIMARS rocket systems to Bradley fighting vehicles, to possibly target … Crimea,” the outlet said, adding that Washington “has come to believe that if the Ukrainian military can show Russia that its control of Crimea can be threatened, that would strengthen Kiev’s position in any future negotiations.” Despite Moscow’s heavy fortifications on the peninsula, which hosts Russia’s Black Sea Fleet and other military bases, Crimea remains a “major focus” of Ukrainian battleplans, according to the Times. It is unclear exactly how Washington hopes to assist attacks on the region, but the outlet suggested the decision to supply Kiev with Bradley infantry fighting vehicles showed willingness to help Ukraine “go on the offense – including targeting Crimea.”

Alongside troop transports provided by France and Germany, the military vehicles “could be the vanguard of an armored force that Ukraine could employ in a counteroffensive this winter or spring,” unnamed “government and independent analysts” told the Times. However, even as the White House considers supporting attacks on Russian soil, President Joe Biden continues to refuse Ukrainian requests for longer-range missiles and heavy battle tanks that could be used in a future offensive. He has previously warned that such aid could provoke direct hostilities with Moscow and even kick off a nuclear war, though such concerns appear to be slowly waning as the conflict drags on. “The fear of escalation has changed since the beginning,” an unnamed US defense source told a British newspaper last month, suggesting the Pentagon had “given a tacit endorsement of Ukraine’s long-range attacks on targets inside Russia.”

While State Department spokesman Ned Price insisted on Wednesday that the US is not placing any “limits” on Ukrainian strikes or “making targeting decisions” on Kiev’s behalf, the latest discussions at the White House may indicate a shift in opinion among some officials. Historically a Russian territory from the late 18th century until its transfer to Ukraine under Soviet authorities in 1954, Crimea held a referendum to reunify with Russia following the Euromaidan coup of 2014. Kiev and its Western allies have refused to recognize the vote, however, and say the peninsula is still rightfully Ukrainian land, with President Vladimir Zelensky reiterating hopes for the “reconquest” of the region last month.

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“Without the function of dealing with such a so-called threat as Russia, NATO would have no use at all…”

NATO Inflates Russia Threat To Justify Its Existence – Chinese Media (TASS)

NATO is trying to inflate the so-called Russia threat to justify its existence, China’s Global Times newspaper said in an editorial on Wednesday. “Without the function of dealing with such a so-called threat as Russia, NATO would have no use at all. Therefore, the NATO chief needs to consider how to prolong the alliance’s life. NATO finds a way to justify its existence by setting up targets, including Russia,” the editorial reads. “But it is impossible for the West as a whole to cut off relations with Russia completely. Russia is an important pole in the multipolar world that the Western world cannot avoid or ignore,” the paper noted.


“If the West and Russia continue to fall into an abnormal state of relations, such as confrontation and conflict, Europe, which is closely connected with Russia, will suffer the most. What’s more, European countries are not monolithic. As large-scale military conflicts in Ukraine ends and sporadic conflicts occur, some European countries may relax sanctions against Russia and develop their bilateral relations, because they know that continuing to contain Russia may undermine their interests, even more than Russia’s,” the editorial added. “The Russia-Ukraine conflict is not a confrontation between the West and Russia, but simply between Washington-led NATO and Moscow,” the newspaper emphasized.

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“Putin said once that his mother was declared dead and was about to be taken for burial when his father, who had just come home on a visit from the frontlines, managed to ward off a funeral team at the last moment and helped her recover.”

Putin: Victory In Ukraine Is “Unavoidable” (ZH)

In a highly anticipated speech Wednesday on the occasion of the 80th anniversary of the Red Army breaking the Nazi siege of St. Petersburg (during Soviet times: Leningrad) on Jan. 18, 1943, President Vladimir Putin said that victory in Ukraine is “unavoidable”. Addressing military veterans, Putin said, “Large-scale combat operations involving heavy weapons, artillery, tanks and aircraft haven’t stopped in Donbas since 2014.” He added: “All that we are doing today as part of the special military operation is an attempt to stop this war. This is the meaning of our operation — protecting people who live on those territories.” The talk was filled with the usual themes he’s emphasized since the February invasion, but absent was what many pundits and officials in the West were anticipating when the speech was first unveiled a day ago: formal declaration of war.

But the full mobilization has yet to come; instead, he again reviewed Moscow’s perspective of the causes underlying the conflict. He asserted that Russia attempted to negotiate a peaceful settlement to the years-running war in Donbas, in order to prevent the need to send troops, but emphasized “we were just duped and cheated” by Ukraine and the West. He also said that Russia had a duty to protect the Russian-speakers of eastern Ukraine. The Zelensky government has of late cracked down even harder on Russian culture, placing severe restrictions on Russian books and music, and even arresting Ukrainian Orthodox clerics that maintain unity with the Moscow Patriarchate church.

The Associated Press references some interesting background regarding Putin’s personal family history, which makes the West’s ‘Putler’ references hollow and shallow, given that the Nazi siege of Leningrad (Petersburg) directly impacted Putin’s family: “Putin on Wednesday laid a wreath at the city’s Piskaryov memorial cemetery, where 420,000 civilian victims of the siege and 70,000 Soviet soldiers were buried. He also put flowers in a section where his brother, who died as a child during the siege, was buried in a mass grave.” Putin said once that his mother was declared dead and was about to be taken for burial when his father, who had just come home on a visit from the frontlines, managed to ward off a funeral team at the last moment and helped her recover.

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I don’t think he thinks that.

West Expects Ukraine To ‘Succeed On The Battlefield’ – Blinken (TASS)

Western countries are adapting their military aid to Kiev and expect Ukraine to “succeed on the battlefield,” US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said at a joint press conference with UK Foreign Secretary James Cleverly on Tuesday.According to him, Ukraine has been “strongly supported by our two countries and many other countries.” “We continue to adapt along the way,” the US top diplomat said. “The bottom line is we are determined to make sure that Ukraine has what it needs to succeed on the battlefield,” he asserted. As Russia’s special military operation in Ukraine evolved, so did Western military aid to Kiev, according to Blinken. He stressed that it started “months before the Russian aggression.”


“If you look at the trajectory from Stingers, to Javelins, to HIMARS, to Bradley Fighting Vehicles, to Patriot missile batteries, we have continuously provided what Ukraine needs,” the diplomat said. According to his estimates, Kiev has already received “some $25 billion in security assistance to Ukraine over less than a year.” “I would anticipate that you’ll hear more announcements in the days to come,” he added. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and other Russian officials have repeatedly noted the danger of Western weapon supplies to Ukraine ending up in other regions. Russian Ambassador to the US Anatoly Antonov cautioned that the militarization of Ukraine by the West directly threatens European and global security.

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“The resistance of Russia’s economy is leading the imperial American system to the precipice. Nobody had foreseen that the Russian economy would hold facing NATO’s ‘economic power’”

‘Fragmented World’ Sleepwalks Into World War III (Escobar)

Emmanuel Todd was not at Davos. But it was the French anthropologist, historian, demographer and geopolitical analyst who ended up ruffling all the appropriate feathers across the collective West these past few days with a fascinating anthropological object: a reality-based interview. Todd spoke to Le Figaro – the newspaper of choice of the French establishment and haute bourgeoisie. The interview was published last Friday on page 22, sandwiched between proverbial Russophobic screeds and with an extremely brief mention on the bottom of the front page. So people really had to work hard to find it.

Todd joked that he has the – absurd – reputation of a “rebel destroy” in France, while in Japan he’s respected, featured in mainstream media, and his books are published with great success, including the latest (over 100,000 copies sold): “The Third World War Has Already Started”. Significantly, this Japanese best seller does not exist in French, considering the whole Paris-based publishing industry toes the EU/NATO line on Ukraine. The fact that Todd gets several things right is a minor miracle in the current, abysmally myopic European intellectual landscape (there are other analysts especially in Italy and Germany, but they carry much less weight than Todd). So here’s Todd’s concise Greatest Hits.

– A new World War is on: By “switching from a limited territorial war to a global economic clash, between the collective West on one side and Russia linked to China on the other side, this became a World War”.
– The Kremlin, says Todd, made a mistake, calculating that a decomposed Ukraine society would collapse right away. Of course he does not get into detail on how Ukraine had been weaponized to the hilt by the NATO military alliance.
– Todd is spot on when he stresses how Germany and France had become minor partners at NATO and were not aware of what was being plotted in Ukraine militarily: “They did not know that the Americans, British and Poles could allow Ukraine to fight an extended war. NATO’s fundamental axis now is Washington-London-Warsaw-Kiev.”
– Todd’s major give away is a killer: “The resistance of Russia’s economy is leading the imperial American system to the precipice. Nobody had foreseen that the Russian economy would hold facing NATO’s ‘economic power’”.

– Consequently, “monetary and financial American controls over the world may collapse, and with them the possibility for the US of financing for nothing their enormous trade deficit”.
– And that’s why “we are in an endless war, in a clash where the conclusion is the collapse of one or the other.”
– On China, Todd might sound like a more pugnacious version of Liu He at Davos: “That’s the fundamental dilemma of the American economy: it cannot face Chinese competition without importing qualified Chinese work force.”
– As for the Russian economy, “it does accept market rules, but with an important role for the state, and it keeps the flexibility of forming engineers that allow adaptations, industrial and military.”

– And that bring us, once again, to globalization, in a manner that Davos roundtables were incapable of understanding: “We have delocalized so much of our industrial activity that we don’t know whether our war production may be sustained”.
– On a more erudite interpretation of that “clash of civilizations” fallacy, Todd goes for soft power and comes up with a startling conclusion: “On 75 percent of the planet, the organization of parenthood was patrilineal, and that’s why we may identify a strong understanding of the Russian position. For the collective non-West, Russia affirms a reassuring moral conservatism.”
– So what Moscow has been able to pull off is to “reposition itself as the archetype of a big power, not only “anti-colonialist” but also patrilineal and conservative in terms of traditional mores.”

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“Support for Ukraine only ranked sixth among Democrats and tenth among Republicans.”

West ‘Tired’ Of Ukraine Situation – Poland (RT)

Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said on Wednesday that Ukraine’s backers seem to be growing “a little tired” and showing less “emotional” involvement in the ongoing conflict, despite a steady flow of Western weaponry and other aid to Kiev and unprecedented economic pressure on Moscow. “A few months ago, the discussions were on a different emotional level – and the interest was different,” Morawiecki said in an interview with the state broadcaster TVP, on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos. “The West, the free world, is a little tired and would like to live a normal life,” Morawiecki claimed. “Today, I see this very clearly and I want to warn world leaders, because Russia is patient and looks to tighten its grip on Ukraine in the long term.”

“Everyone would like to live a normal life, but if Ukraine falls, will it be a normal life?” he argued, adding that “fortunately” he sees a “broad consensus” on the issue of Ukraine among the Western leaders in Davos. After Russia launched its military operation in Ukraine last February, the US and its allies imposed unprecedented sanctions on Moscow, freezing half its gold and foreign currency reserves and targeting Russian energy exports. The restrictions, however, caused energy prices and living costs to surge, prompting multiple protests across Europe over the past year. Ukrainian officials pledged to fight until their forces seized control of all the territory the country considers its own, while the leaders in Washington and the EU have vowed to help for as long as it takes.

However, according to this week’s opinion poll, roughly half of the people in nine EU nations favor a swift end to the armed conflict in Ukraine, even if it means Kiev would have to relinquish some territory. Americans also don’t consider the ongoing conflict as their top priority, according to a Morning Consult poll made public in December. Democrats cared more about things like climate change and preventing another global pandemic, while Republicans wished the government would focus on immigration, terrorism and drug trafficking. Support for Ukraine only ranked sixth among Democrats and tenth among Republicans.

Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky said in July that helping his country should be more important for Americans than domestic concerns, claiming that inflation and coronavirus are “nothing” compared to Ukraine’s struggle, and urging Americans to make sacrifices and support aid for Kiev “until we win.” Since the beginning of the conflict, Poland has become a key hub for the transfer of military aid to Ukraine. Addressing the WEF on Wednesday, Polish President Andrzej Duda pleaded for more deliveries of heavy weapons and ammunition to Ukraine, saying the country may not continue to exist otherwise.

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“..food security, energy security, biological security, withdrawal of Russian troops from everywhere, Russia’s repentance, tribunal and condemnation..”

Lavrov Lambasts Zelensky’s ‘Absurd’ Ideas Of How To Settle Conflict (TASS)

Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky is putting forward absurd ideas of how to handle the conflict, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said at a press conference devoted to Russian diplomacy in 2022 on Wednesday. “Zelensky puts forward completely absurd initiatives, like a ten-point plan, where everything is piled up – food security, energy security, biological security, withdrawal of Russian troops from everywhere, Russia’s repentance, tribunal and condemnation,” Lavrov said. Lavrov stressed that negotiations with Zelensky were out of the question. “At least because he legally forbade negotiations with the Russian government,” he recalled.


While addressing the G20 summit in mid-November by video link, Zelensky said that Kiev had its own ten-point “peace plan.” He mentioned nuclear, food and energy security, the exchange of “held persons” according to the “all-for-all” formula, and the restoration of Ukraine’s territorial integrity. Once again Zelensky recalled that Kiev was insisting on international security guarantees and had developed a draft of the corresponding document. The Ukrainian leader added that Kiev wished to see the establishment of an international mechanism to compensate for Ukraine’s losses from hostilities at the expense of Russian assets.

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“..severe sanctions on Russia that will plunge the Russian economy into recession for decades..”

Russia Posts Record Current Account Surplus (RT)

Russia’s current account surplus almost doubled last year and hit a record high amid rising global energy prices and despite the imposition of Western sanctions, the country’s central bank reported on Tuesday. The current account – which measures the difference between outgoing funds and money coming into the country through trade, investment and transfers – grew by almost 86% year-on-year in 2022 to $227.4 billion, the regulator’s preliminary data showed. The central bank said soaring commodity prices throughout 2022 had helped push the current account balance higher, while imports slowly recovered in the second half of the year.


“The value of imports of goods and services was reduced,” the regulator said. “Nevertheless, the decline in imports observed in the first half of 2022 compared to last year’s indicator was replaced by their gradual recovery.” Russia’s foreign trade surplus in goods and services also surged by 66% from $170.1 billion in 2021 to $282.3 billion last year, reaching a historic maximum for the second straight year. It comes as Moscow has rerouted the bulk of its trade flows eastwards after Western sanctions largely disrupted supply chains with European markets. Trade between Russia and China soared by nearly a third in 2022 to over $190 billion, according to China’s customs data.

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Yes, the riyal is still pegged to the dollar.

Saudi Arabia Ready To Ditch Dollar In Trade – Finance Minister (RT)

Saudi Arabia is ready to discuss trading in currencies other than the US dollar, according to the Kingdom’s finance minister Mohammed Al-Jadaan, as cited by Bloomberg. Al-Jadaan’s comments come a month after China’s President Xi Jinping said that Beijing is ready to make energy purchases in yuan instead of the US dollar in trade exchanges with members of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). China’s leader highlighted the necessity of the shift while speaking at a Chinese-Arab summit hosted by Saudi Arabia earlier this week. “There are no issues with discussing how we settle our trade arrangements, whether it is in US dollar, in euro or in Saudi riyal,” Al-Jadaan said on Tuesday during an interview with Bloomberg in Davos, Switzerland. The oil-rich kingdom is seeking to deepen its ties with vital trade partners, including China.


The readiness for talks on the issue expressed by Riyadh may signal that the world’s biggest oil exporter is open to diversifying away from the US dollar after decades of pricing crude exports in the US currency. The riyal, the Saudi national currency, has been pegged to the greenback, too. The trend towards the shift to national currencies that is recently being observed among the major participants in global trade chains is partially attributed to the policies of secondary sanctions that Washington is pursuing. Initially, the steps towards ditching the US currency in trade, particularly in the energy sector, were intensified in the wake of the sweeping sanctions introduced by Western nations against Russia, one of the world’s major energy producers and exporters, over the military operation in Ukraine.

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I think they’ll be okay.

500 Advertisers Paused Spending At Twitter, Daily Revenue Plunges 40% (ZH)

Questions are swirling about the health of Twitter Inc.’s ad business. Since taking over Twitter, Elon Musk has faced an exodus of executives and advertisers. Nearly three months as ‘Chief Twit,’ Musk’s social media platform might be experiencing a significant decline in daily ad revenue and hundreds of top advertisers paused spending. The Information reported that a senior Twitter manager told staff on Tuesday that more than 500 of Twitter’s top advertisers have paused spending since Musk bought the company on October 27.

An alarming crisis is festering in the company’s core ads business. Siddharth Rao, a manager supervising the engineers working on Twitter’s ad business, also told employees that daily revenue plunged 40% versus the same day a year ago, according to a person with direct knowledge of the matter. “While Musk plans to diversify Twitter’s revenue away from ads in the long run, continued deterioration of that business will make it harder for the company to break even on a free cash flow basis in 2023 as Musk predicted it would three weeks ago,” The Information said. Musk reduced the company’s headcount by thousands of employees to supplement sliding ad revenue and quickly pushed a paid verification subscription for users.

However, Axios reported under Musk’s leadership, the social media company has secured content sponsorship deals with three dozen news outlets, media companies, and sports leagues. “This year, almost all of the major sports leagues, including the NFL, NBA, NHL, MLB, NASCAR, PGA Tour and more, plan to run content deals on Twitter around regular season games and tentpole events, like March Madness, NBA Playoffs and the Super Bowl, according to the schedule seen by Axios.” Twitter makes most of its money through advertising and now user subscriptions. It remains to be seen if Musk’s radical overhaul of the social media platform will be successful.

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It’s not just Twitter.

Microsoft Announces Mass Layoffs (RT)

Microsoft announced on Wednesday it will eliminate 10,000 jobs worldwide, almost 5% of its workforce, and take a $1.2-billion charge as global growth is slowing down. In a note to employees seen by Reuters, the company’s chief executive Satya Nadella said the layoffs would conclude by the end of March, with notifications beginning Wednesday. According to the CEO, the company was grappling with a slump in the personal computer market as customers that were accelerating their spending on digital technology during the pandemic are now trying to “optimize their digital spend to do more with less.”


“We’re also seeing organizations in every industry and geography exercise caution as some parts of the world are in a recession and other parts are anticipating one,” Nadella wrote. He added, however, that Microsoft will continue to hire in key strategic areas, emphasizing the importance of building a “new computer platform” using advances in artificial intelligence. Microsoft’s jobs-cut announcement follows similar ones from other big tech companies amid rising concerns of a global slowdown. Amazon said earlier it will be slashing about 18,000 positions while Facebook parent Meta is laying off 11,000, about 13% of its workforce. Twitter’s new CEO Elon Musk has recently also slashed the company’s workforce.

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Delusions of grandeur. They can be dangerous.

John Kerry Fuels Davos Controversy With ‘ET’ Speech (RT)

US climate envoy John Kerry has drawn widespread mockery for his speech to the World Economic Forum, in which he sought to portray the people gathered there as wise saviors of the world. “When you start to think about it, it’s pretty extraordinary that we – a select group of human beings, because of whatever touched us at some point in our lives – are able to sit in a room and come together and actually talk about saving the planet,” Kerry told a WEF panel on Tuesday. “I mean, it’s so almost extraterrestrial to think about ‘saving the planet.’ If you say that to most people, most people think you’re just a crazy, tree-hugging, lefty liberal, you know, do-gooder, or whatever, and there’s no relationship. But really, that’s where we are,” he added.

Later in the speech, Kerry lamented that “allegedly wise adult human beings” ignored the science, mathematics and physics of climate change, and said he was certain the world will “get to a low-carbon, no-carbon economy” because “we have to.” Kerry lost the 2004 US presidential election but went on to be secretary of state during Barack Obama’s second presidential term, taking over from Hillary Clinton. He returned to Washington in 2021 as President Joe Biden’s “climate change czar.”While some critics on social media pointed out that Kerry preaches carbon caps while jetting around the world on a private jet, others zeroed in on his “extraterrestrial” remarks about a select few. “Who are you going to sacrifice to save the planet,” tweeted psychologist Dr. Jordan Peterson, “and do you think and how will you ensure that they have any say in the matter?”

“I always knew they were aliens,” joked Timcast co-host Luke Rudkowski. Others, like conservative radio host Vince Coglianese, compared the Davos event to a summit of cartoon supervillains. “WEF is increasingly becoming an unelected world government that the people never asked for and don’t want,” billionaire Elon Musk commented on the gathering. The 2023 WEF summit is reportedly being attended by 2,700 participants, including more than 600 global CEOs, 116 billionaires and over 50 world leaders.Kerry’s speech about a “touched” few special leaders wasn’t the only controversy at this year’s gathering in the Swiss Alps. Someone at the WEF also decided it was a good idea to have former CNN employee Brian Stelter host a panel on “Clear and Present Danger of Disinformation,” at which European Commission VP Vera Jourova asserted the US will “soon” have laws against “hate speech,” just like the EU.

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“The payments per patient ranged wildly, state by state from $18,000 (NJ) to a whopping $471,000 (WVa). Why was that?”

Against the Tide (Jim Kunstler)

Former US attorney and chief-of-staff to the SecDef, Kash Patel, had a good idea: start with the latest insult to the country. Haul in the newly-appointed special counsel assigned to the “Joe Biden” purloined document scandal. His name is Robert Hur. He was a top aide to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein at the height of RussiaGate, and liaison to the Robert Mueller operation. Mr. Hur participated in filing falsified warrants based on Steele Dossier nonsense to the FISA court. He should have been accountable for that. He’s not fit to serve as any sort of legal arbiter in a national scandal. He was not appointed to shed any light on the issue, but to bury it under a load of procedural horse-shit, in particular, the dodge that questions about “ongoing investigations” can’t be answered. Let’s disarm that weapon from the get-go. And why not appoint Mr. Patel chief counsel to the Weaponization of Government Committee?

Another person who must answer right away is CDC Director Rochelle Walensky because her agency is still aggressively pushing mRNA shots strongly implicated in causing injury and death among the American people. There are no more obvious weapons against the people than these deadly products retailed by Pfizer and Moderna. The government’s “vaccination” crusade has to stop ASAP. Not one more dose of the stuff should be given to anybody. An audit needs to be run on the CDC’s data base to determine exactly how it was manipulated to hide the facts about “vaccine” injuries and deaths. The public should also hear why Ms. Walensky’s CDC promoted “incentive payments” to hospitals for each patient who died testing positive for Covid-19 (not necessarily from Covid-19). The payments per patient ranged wildly, state by state from $18,000 (NJ) to a whopping $471,000 (WVa). Why was that?

The payments amounted to a bonanza for hospital administrators, who were incentivized not only to misattribute cause-of-death — the proverbial motorcycle crash victim who tests positive — but to let people die on ventilators. The Weaponization of Government Committee might also subpoena FDA Commissioner Robert M. Califf and his two predecessors during the Covid-19 event, Janet Woodcock and Stephen Hahn. The country needs to hear what they knew about the operation that produced the “vaccines” with such astonishing speed — as if these products were somehow in development before Covid-19 even appeared on the scene. They also need to answer about the shenanigans behind the following: the fudged and expedited “vaccine” trials; the demonization and virtual outlawing of existing safe and effective FDA-approved drugs for early treatment, ivermectin, hydroxychloroquine and other meds; the promotion of toxic remdesivir as a primary therapy for C-19; and the initiation and extension (for three years) of an emergency use authorization that shielded the drug companies from liability while injuries and deaths mounted.

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Puzzled by this:

Hunter also claimed that said house was owned by him, but the tax and deed records say otherwise.

The Biden Scam Unravels (Denninger)

Well now the classified document scandal has really blown up in Biden’s face. But even more-intriguing is that there is an apparent set of evidence of both hinky dealing and intentional cover-up to be found in Biden’s tax returns and the revelation that Hunter was paying Joe $50,000 a month to rent a house that was worth a couple of million. Hunter also claimed that said house was owned by him, but the tax and deed records say otherwise. That, however, is Hunter’s problem — not Joe’s. Joe’s tax return not only shows the property tax paid on the house it also deducts mortgage interest. It’s his house both by deed and by who’s covering the mandatory bills. Joe’s tax returns from the subject year shows business income from pass-throughs (two S corps) which is perfectly legal.

The tax returns do not show income in that classification from other sources; ergo, said “rental” has to be inside one of those two corporations or there is a serious felony involved, because that would be $600,000 of undeclared (and untaxed) income. Line 17 of Schedule 1 shows this and ties back from Schedule E, as it must. The other “business income or loss” from Schedule C is inconsequential in amount. But this leads to a very serious question: There’s nothing wrong with an S corp owning property but does it not have to be titled into the corporation? It wasn’t; at all times material the house was owned by Jill and Joe Biden in their personal capacity. It was not in a trust of some sort nor was it retitled into an S-corp as there’s no record of either.

That seems rather hinky but perhaps not. In any event rental property is very different than a personal residence in that with rental property there’s depreciation and all other manner of things you can deduct that isn’t true for a personal residence — but if you convert it back to a personal residence that gets recaptured which is something I’ve warned other people to be careful of. So let’s see the records on those two S-Corps that the Bidens declared and paid taxes on during that year. Is the rental income from Hunter in there, and if so, how does the S-Corp, which I remind as a corporation must keep formal books of account and not lie in any material respect account for income from an asset it does not own?

If the rental income isn’t in those two S-Corps then either it never existed or Joe and Jill ripped off the government and committed tax fraud on the $600,000 paid by Hunter to Joe that is not declared anywhere in their state or federal tax returns. In any event someone is hiding something in there. Whether this is more confabulation of a drug-addled Hunter or was disclosure of “10% for the big guy” kicked back to his father under the table and either improperly buried in an S-Corp “profit” that never owned the asset in question and thus can’t do that or Joe and Jill got $600,000 worth of undeclared income and didn’t pay taxes on it is now the question that demands an answer.

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“..the same media which suggested the Trumps were Russian operatives based on a hoax – are virtually silent at actual risks to national security posed by the Biden family.”

Hunter Biden Lived In Classified Doc House While Raking In Chinese Millions (ZH)

[..] Second, the Washington Free Beacon reports that photos from Hunter Biden’s abandoned laptop place him at the Wilmington House in July, 2017. Of note, the classified documents were reportedly brought to the house in January of that year. The photos ‘are the most concrete evidence to date’ that Hunter – who was actively negotiating a deal with a CCP-linked Chinese energy company – had access to areas of his father’s home where classified documents were stored. A Washington Free Beacon review of the laptop found four 2017 photographs of Hunter Biden, clad in a white collared shirt and a camouflage baseball cap, behind the wheel of his father’s 1967 Corvette Stingray. GPS metadata embedded in the photos indicate they were taken within a minute of each other at 6:49 p.m. on July 30 of that year, just outside the president’s Wilmington, Del., residence. The photos show Hunter Biden posing in the vehicle beside two young girls. One appears to be his then-12-year-old niece, Natalie Biden. The other could not be identified.

Former Secret Service agent and certified cyber forensics expert, Konstantinos Gus Dimitrelos, analyzed the photos and confirmed their authenticity. “If requested, I will testify the photographs are genuine and were taken on July 30, 2017,” he told the Free Beacon. And as the Beacon further reports – corroborating Breitbart’s reporting, “At the time the photos were taken, Hunter Biden was negotiating a lucrative business deal with the now-defunct Chinese energy conglomerate CEFC, which was closely tied to the Chinese government. Biden’s former business partner Tony Bobulinski claimed to have met with Joe Biden in person in early May 2017—less than three months before Hunter Biden was pictured taking the wheel of his father’s prized vehicle—to discuss the Biden family’s Chinese business dealings.” In total, CEFC paid Hunter Biden $6 million in legal and consulting fees in 2017 and 2018. And of course, the same media which suggested the Trumps were Russian operatives based on a hoax – are virtually silent at actual risks to national security posed by the Biden family.

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“..the mice the researchers used are genetically altered to model accurately the human response to the coronavirus..”

After 4 Shots Covid Jabs Sharply Reduced Immune Function In Mice (Berenson)

Mice who received more than four Covid vaccine jabs had a collapse in their ability to fight the coronavirus, Chinese researchers have found. The damage extended past antibodies, the immune system’s front line of defense against viruses and bacteria, to the T-cells that form the crucial backup. The researchers reported the finding in a peer-reviewed paper published December 22 in the journal iScience. In surprisingly clear language, they warned: “Our findings demonstrate potential risks with the continuous use of SARS-CoV-2 vaccine boosters, providing immediate implications [emphasis added] for the global COVID-19 vaccination enhancement strategies.” Later in the paper, the researchers were even more direct:


“We found that the protective effects from the humoral immunity and cellular immunity established by the conventional immunization were both profoundly impaired during the extended vaccination course.” The finding has not been confirmed in humans. But the mice the researchers used are genetically altered to model accurately the human response to the coronavirus and have “been shown to share profound similarities with humans in response to SARS-CoV-2 infections,” as the paper explains. The scientists used a vaccine that has a different mechanism of basic action than the mRNA jabs from Pfizer and Moderna, which turn our own cells into spike protein factories. But like them, the Chinese-tested vaccine causes the immune system to focus on a specific part of the coronavirus spike protein to the near-exclusion of other responses.

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One woman wrecking crew.

Jacinda Ardern Resigns As New Zealand’s Prime Minister (PM)

Jacinda Ardern, who has served as prime minister of New Zealand since 2017, announced that she will be resigning effective February 7 at the latest. Ardern revealed her decision at the Labour Party’s annual caucus meeting on Thursday. “I’m leaving because with such a privileged role comes responsibility,” she said, according to The Guardian. “The responsibility to know when you are the right person to lead and also when you are not. I know what this job takes, and I know that I no longer have enough in the tank to do it justice. It’s that simple.” As Bloomberg reports, Ardern will stay on as a member of parliament until April. An election is scheduled to be held on October 14. Ardern was a controversial figure. During her time as leader, her government imposed on the people of New Zealand some of the strictest Covid-19 restrictions in the world.


At the onset of the pandemic, for example, books were deemed “non-essential” as Ardern and other officials attempted to keep people in their homes. Then in August 2021, following a six month period where no cases were recorded, Ardern sent the entire country into Level 4 lockdown for three days when one man in Auckland tested positive. Those who chose not to adhere to the draconian policies were hit with heavy penalties, including fines of up to US$8,400. Ardern was also an ardent supporter of tightening restrictions on New Zealanders’ online activity, calling for increased censorship. After years of clamping down on the freedoms of her citizens, Ardern’s popularity began to plummet. A December 2022 poll revealed that her support was down to just 33 percent. Support for the centre-right National Party sat at around 39 percent, and in the first polls of the new year, they continue to hold the lead.

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Socialism

 

 

Zuck

 

 

 

 

Snow plow

 

 


The Formosan clouded leopard was declared extinct in 2013 after no sightings since 1983. In February of 2019, it was spotted for the first time in almost 40 years.

 

 

The voice of God

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Jan 082023
 
 January 8, 2023  Posted by at 9:56 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , ,  115 Responses »


Dorothea Lange On the road to Los Angeles, California 1937

 

What Have We Bargained for in Ukraine? (Dougherty)
Ukraine Running Out Of Time – Former US Officials (RT)
The WORST Political Upheaval EVER (Denninger)
The Right Played Hardball in Congress. The Left Should Take Notes. (Jacobin)
Twitter Fires More Censors (RT)
Zelensky Sanctions Over 100 Russian Public Figures (RT)
Adam Schiff and the Underbelly of American Censorship (Turley)
Trump Suggests Biden Provoked Putin Into Invading Ukraine (PM)
Donald Trump Slams Arrest Of Ashli Babbitt’s Mother (PM)
Kristi Noem Blasts Jan. 6 Committee After Social Security Numbers Leaked (CB)
Greece To Build Fence On Border With Türkiye (RT)
Every Fourth European Has Trouble Heating Their Home (RT)
Faced With A New Wave Of Covid, China Is Opening Its Borders (Zagorenko)
Switzerland Slated To Destroy Millions Of mRNA Vaccine Doses In 2023 (Eugyp)

 

 

 

 

Tucker Jan 6 – Excellent
https://twitter.com/i/status/1611972143482568704

 

 

 

 

Fauci
https://twitter.com/i/status/1611796697847308288

 

 

 

 

“They”

 

 

J6

 

 

 

 

 

 

“The dangers of the conflict are much greater than hawks would have us believe.”

What Have We Bargained for in Ukraine? (Dougherty)

‘Your money is not charity,” Volodymyr Zelensky told a joint session of the U.S. Congress a few weeks ago. “It is an investment in global security and democracy that we handle in the most responsible way.” And many conservative hawks, hoping to hold back the rising tide of skepticism among Republicans, have echoed this line. After the speech, Representative Dan Crenshaw called the idea of ending aid to Ukraine “absurd” and said America had “made a pretty good investment here.” My friend and colleague Matthew Continetti writes that “securing America’s position and freedom’s future without direct intervention and for a rounding error in the federal budget is a strategic bargain. Ukraine needs more, not less, U.S. aid, and it needs it now.” In Commentary in November, Noah Rothman wrote that “Kyiv’s victories are our victories, too, insofar as they advance a core American national interest: preserving the stable European covenant that has blessed Western powers with the longest, most durable peace on the Continent in the modern age.”

This view holds that for pennies on the dollar, the U.S. has been able to preserve a democracy threatened by an authoritarian regime, cripple a rival military, strengthen the NATO alliance, prevent Vladimir Putin from an inevitable invasion of NATO territory, and scare off Xi Jinping from ever messing with Taiwan. For these conservatives, the policy preferred by Joe Biden and the Democrats is one whose costs are greatly outweighed by its benefits. Except, none of this is quite true. Crippling a rival military is only worthwhile when you have a strategic reason for doing so, and we conspicuously lack one. The NATO alliance’s duties have been radically expanded with no radical expansion in the share of the alliance’s burdens shouldered by Europe.

Ukraine’s ultra-nationalist project is at odds with the democratic and liberal-internationalist values that are used to sell the conflict abroad. The conflict’s financial and moral costs to the U.S. have been growing for nearly a decade, and taking on Ukraine as a permanent dependent will grow them even more. The arc of the conflict is just as likely to encourage as to discourage Xi in his pursuit of Taiwan, given the ways in which our enmeshment in Europe will deplete our attention, resources, and will to be the world’s cop. And finally, no conflict in this blood-stained area of the globe is a mom-and-pop bingo game in which you can cash out your modest investments at any time; Vladimir Putin and Russia have a say in how this ends.

The advocates for continued aid to Ukraine must downplay the costs involved, because support for continued aid began to drop precipitously when the Biden administration began briefing the press on our strategy. It didn’t help the hawks’ cause when retired general David Petraeus went on Sunday morning television and claimed that if Russia used a so-called tactical nuke in Ukraine, the U.S. would enter the war as a full belligerent, annihilate Russia’s army, and launch decapitation strikes on the Kremlin. It instead made people ask themselves how Russia would respond to such drastic countermeasures, and to shudder at the possible answers.

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Gates and Rice. A veiled push for more and faster.

Ukraine Running Out Of Time – Former US Officials (RT)

Former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and former Defense Secretary Robert Gates have admitted that Ukraine’s economy and military are almost completely reliant on bailouts from the West, and barring a dramatic turnaround, its chances of victory are slipping away. Ukraine’s “economy is in a shambles,” the ex-diplomat and former Pentagon chief wrote in the Washington Post on Saturday. The country’s “military capability and economy are now dependent almost entirely on lifelines from the West,” they continued, arguing that should Ukraine fail to mount a successful offensive in the near future, President Zelensky will be pressured by the West to negotiate a ceasefire with Russian President Vladimir Putin – something the Ukrainian leader has repeatedly refused to consider.

With the frontline relatively static since autumn, Russian forces have ground down their Ukrainian opponents in fierce fighting near Bakhmut/Artyomovsk, with an American mercenary commander recently acknowledging that Ukraine is suffering “extraordinarily high casualties” in that sector, and Ukraine’s ambassador to Canada, Vadim Pristaiko, describing his side’s casualties as “huge” and “indigestible.” Kiev has publicly proclaimed that it plans a major offensive in the spring, but Rice and Gates wrote that Ukraine may have “weeks, not months” to stay in the fight. To that end, they advocated sending the country more and heavier weapons. Although the US has already allocated more than $110 billion in military and economic aid to Ukraine since February, they said that Washington won’t send heavy tanks. Germany “and other allies” should fill this need instead, they argued.

The Biden administration announced on Friday that it would give Ukraine 50 Bradley infantry fighting vehicles – the most modern armor sent to Kiev so far – as part of a $3 billion weapons package. France also pledged a number of wheeled ‘light tanks’, and Germany promised 40 Marder infantry fighting vehicles. Nevertheless, Kiev says it needs more. In an interview with The Economist last month, Ukrainian general Valery Zaluzhny said he would need 300 more tanks, up to 700 infantry fighting vehicles, and 500 howitzers to conduct offensive operations. This is more than the number of such vehicles in the entire British or German inventory. Russia, meanwhile, has repeatedly insisted that “pumping” Ukraine with weapons will ultimately have no effect on the outcome of the conflict and will only serve to prolong the hostilities and lead to more bloodshed.

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“..what’s going on now is in fact much less than we’ve come through before..”

The WORST Political Upheaval EVER (Denninger)

The polarization caused by the last three years didn’t come from a virus: It came from what so-called “leaders” did when the virus showed up and we, the people in this nation let them do every bit of it. The 2022 midterms were a clean demonstration of this and those actions were nasty in terms of their impact. Several states saw their margins of victory for either GOP or Democrat governors increase, not narrow, and yet the margin didn’t come from people shifting allegiance within the state; it came from migration either to or from said state. DeSantis and Lee both gained margin precisely because people left NY, Michigan, Illinois, California and other “Blue” states and moved to “Red” ones.

This had no value for DeSantis or Lee because once you win by one vote you have the same outcome as if you win by one million votes but that same shift meant that illogical repeat performances, such as Witmer, won as well because the GOP voters who left meant what remained was enough for her not to be fired. (While Pritzker also easily won that race was never really in doubt even if people didn’t leave Illinois, so I’m intentionally excluding it.) It didn’t help that the GOP ran candidates that were ridiculously outside of where mainstream public opinion is — for example, Michigan’s GOP ran a candidate opposed to abortion in all cases, including rape and incest. The GOP had to be out of its mind to do this, but do it they did and they lost.

At its core the problem, however, does not lie there: It lies in the destruction of norms that society has relied on. Don’t kid yourself no matter who screams about it: Without heterosexual reproduction and the resilience afforded by stable, two-parent homes as an “ordinary and normal” thing society eventually collapses because without a productive next generation you have nothing. Have we put any thought into this and how to at least move things back toward a more-stable outcome in that regard, and thus are we inevitably consigned to a hellscape and collapse? It’s easy to argue “No. Not one bit.” But I’ll take the other side of that wager simply because what’s going on now is in fact much less than we’ve come through before, and the pendulum will, with a high degree of probability, swing back the other way.

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The left, WITH the media, and WITH intel, played hardball since 2015. But that was never a problem.

The Right Played Hardball in Congress. The Left Should Take Notes. (Jacobin)

Kevin McCarthy has been at the head of the Republican’s House caucus since 2019. In any other ordinary year, the position of Speaker of the House would have been his almost automatically following the Republicans’ narrow victory in last year’s midterm election. But a small group on the party’s right wing turned a coronation into a multi-round fight. Twenty congressmembers were at the core of the right-wing rebellion; all but one are connected to the House Freedom Caucus, the ideological home of the party’s rightmost flank. These Republicans are notorious for their support of Donald Trump and the January 6 riots. They deserve every decent person’s scorn. But when it comes to tactics, one has to admit that they know how to play.

Desperate for their support, McCarthy had to give on issue after issue. McCarthy folded early on policy questions. He fought against the 2022 lame-duck spending bill, a core right-wing priority. He called for the resignation or impeachment of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, a target of the Right’s ire. McCarthy also agreed to create a new subcommittee in the House Judiciary Committee to investigate the “weaponization” of the federal government by the Biden administration and the FBI and CIA. More significant in the long term, he also agreed to rules changes and committee assignments that will dramatically strengthen the Right’s hand.

McCarthy agreed to add three members from the Freedom Caucus to the House Rules Committee. That will allow the far right to help shape the issues to be considered by the House. McCarthy’s own PAC, the Congressional Leadership Fund, agreed not to intervene in open primaries against far-right candidates. McCarthy agreed to bring back the Holman Rule, which allows legislators to propose defunding specific federal programs, to fire specific federal officials, and to slash officials’ pay. Most significantly, he agreed to bring back the “motion to vacate the chair,” which will allow just one Republican to call for a snap vote to remove the speaker. This is a rule that the right wing previously used to remove John Boehner. Georgia representative Marjorie Taylor Greene, a leading conspiracy theorist from the Republican fringe, extracted a much sought-after seat on the House Oversight Committee from McCarthy in return for her support.

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It would appear there’s still tons of them left.

Twitter Fires More Censors (RT)

The social network has fired at least a dozen employees responsible for handling the “misinformation policy, global appeals and state media” at its Dublin and Singapore offices, Bloomberg reported on Saturday, citing people familiar with the latest in a series of radical reforms conducted by the company’s new CEO Elon Musk. Twitter’s head of Trust and Safety, Ella Irwin, told the publication that in order to “consolidate teams,” the company only eliminated duplicate positions and cut jobs with not enough workload to justify their existence. The Friday’s cuts reportedly affected the head of site integrity for Twitter’s Asia-Pacific region, Nur Azhar Bin Ayob, and senior director of revenue policy, Analuisa Dominguez, while others asked not to be identified.

In a separate statement to Reuters, Irwin admitted some fresh cuts in her department, but said that the company still has “thousands of people” responsible for content moderation and has “not made cuts to the teams that do that work daily.” After finalizing his purchase of Twitter for $44 billion in October, Musk acknowledged that bankruptcy was a possibility for the social media giant if it does not start generating more cash. In an attempt to cut costs, he fired half of the company’s staff, including most of the top executives and ordered the remaining employees to stop working from home. All in all, an estimated two-thirds of the company’s employees and contractors globally were laid off, fired or quit.

As the site’s new owner, Musk also pushed to scale back content restrictions, vowing to make Twitter a refuge for free speech, while ushering in a range of policy changes which triggered backlash from the media establishment and its celebrity allies. He reactivated the accounts of dozens of its more controversial users and began sharing internal company communications hinting at a massive political conspiracy between the US administration, intelligence agencies and the Big Tech platforms to censor politically inconvenient stories, opinions and people. The billionaire appeared to acknowledge that not everyone supported his recent political diversions this week, polling his followers as to whether he should “stay out of politics” or “keep shooting his feet.” He later joked, that “if I dig my grave deep enough, maybe it comes out the other side of Earth.”

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Everybody just sanctions and censors.

Zelensky Sanctions Over 100 Russian Public Figures (RT)

Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky signed a decree on Saturday, imposing personal sanctions on some 119 Russian public figures. Kiev’s new blacklist includes prominent artists and journalists. Ukraine sanctioned Oscar-winning film director Nikita Mikhalkov, pop singer Philipp Kirkorov, as well as stand-up comedian Evgeny Petrosyan and opera star Anna Netrebko. Kiev also targeted a number of Russian journalists, including RT Editor-in-Chief Margarita Simonyan and head of the Rossiya Segodnya media group Dmitry Kiselyov. The restrictions imposed for a 10-year period include freeze of assets, travel and visa bans, stripping of Ukrainian state awards, and some other measures. Kiev has repeatedly sanctioned Russian officials and public figures amid the ongoing conflict, with hundreds of them blacklisted already.


Russia sent troops into Ukraine on February 24, 2022, citing Kiev’s failure to implement the Minsk agreements, designed to give Donetsk and Lugansk special status within the Ukrainian state. The protocols, brokered by Germany and France, were first signed in 2014. Former Ukrainian president Pyotr Poroshenko has since admitted that Kiev’s main goal was to use the ceasefire to buy time and “create powerful armed forces.” Shortly before the hostilities broke out, the Kremlin recognized the Donbass republics as independent states and demanded that Ukraine officially declare itself a neutral country that will never join any Western military bloc. Last September, Donetsk and Lugansk, as well as Kherson and Zaporozhye Regions, were incorporated into Russia following referendums.

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“We don’t do this.”

Adam Schiff and the Underbelly of American Censorship (Turley)

“We don’t do this.” That response from Twitter to Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) is a singular indictment, coming at the height of Twitter’s censorship operations. Apparently, there were some things that even Twitter’s censors refused to do. One of those things was silencing critics of Schiff and his House committee. In the latest tranche of “Twitter Files,” journalist Matt Taibbi revealed that Twitter balked at Schiff’s demand that Twitter suspend an array of posters or label their content as “misinformation” and “reduce the visibility” of them. Among those who Schiff secretly tried to censor was New York Post columnist Paul Sperry. Sperry drew Schiff’s ire by writing about a conversation allegedly overheard by one of his sources.

Sperry’s article, which appeared in RealClearInvestigations, cited two sources as overhearing two White House staffers discussing how to remove newly-elected President Trump from office. The article raised the possibility of bias on the part of an alleged key player in launching the first Trump impeachment, CIA analyst Eric Ciaramella. The sources reportedly said that Ciaramella was in a conversation with Sean Misko, a holdover from the Obama administration who later joined Schiff’s staff. The conversation — in Sperry’s words — showed that “just days after [Trump] was sworn in they were already trying to get rid of him.” Rather than simply refute the allegation, Schiff wanted Sperry and other critics silenced.

His office reportedly laid out steps to cleanse Twitter of their criticism, including an instruction to “remove any and all content about Mr. Misko and other Committee staff from its service — to include quotes, retweets, and reactions to that content.” The date of Schiff’s non-public letter in November 2020 is notable: Earlier that year, I wrote a column for The Hill criticizing Schiff for pushing for censorship of misinformation in a letter that he sent to social media companies. His office promptly objected to the very suggestion that Schiff supported censorship. We now know Schiff was actively seeking to censor specific critics on social media. These likely were viewed as more than “requests” since Schiff was sending public letters threatening possible legislative action against these same companies. He wanted his critics silenced on social media. After all, criticizing his investigations or staff must, by definition, be misinformation — right?

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US was building up Ukraine under Trump presidency too.

Trump Suggests Biden Provoked Putin Into Invading Ukraine (PM)

Saturday night, speaking from his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida, former President Donald Trump suggested that Joe Biden influenced Russian President Vladimir Putin to invade Ukraine in February 2022. Speaking of Biden, Trump said in video posted by Jack Posobiec on Instagram, “We have a man who has no mind left and his mind in prime time wasn’t any good, but he has no mind left. And this is the guy negotiating for us. We have a man that convinced Putin to go into Ukraine.” “Because if you look at the psychology that he used, it’s the exact opposite,” Trump said in reference to Biden’s January 2022 comments referring to Putin’s expansion into Ukraine as a “minor incursion.”

Biden said during a press conference before Putin invaded Ukraine, “I think what you’re gonna see is that Russia will be held accountable if it invades. And it depends on what it does. It’s one thing if it’s a minor incursion and we end up having to fight about what to do and not do, etc.” “Putin would have never ever gone in,” Trump said and remarked of Biden, “he knew the ramifications.” “Do you remember when Biden said, well they might take some small parts of Ukraine,” Trump said in reference to the “minor incursion” remarks. “That was what Putin wanted to hear. That there would be no problem if you take some parts of Ukraine,” Trump added.

Trump had been speaking of the war in Ukraine and the escalating conflict, including the danger of nuclear war. Trump referred to nuclear as the second “n-word” you should never say. The US has sent over $60 billion to Ukraine to aid in their ongoing war with their Russian invaders since February 2022. Congress is set to greenlight more money for Ukraine as President Volodymyr Zelensky asks the US for continued aid.

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A very dark side of America.

Donald Trump Slams Arrest Of Ashli Babbitt’s Mother (PM)

Speaking at an event at Mar-a-Lago on Saturday evening, Donald Trump slammed the Biden regime over the arrest of Ashli Babbitt’s mother. Ashli Babbitt was killed by a United States Capitol Police officer on Jan. 6. Witthoeft was arrested outside of the Capitol on Friday, the two-year anniversary of her daughter’s death. Trump brought up the arrest during a special CPAC event at Mar-a-Lago, pointing to the weaponization of law enforcement under the Biden regime. “We have a weaponized country right now with law enforcement. It’s a disgrace what’s happening to our country. Ashli Babbitt’s mother was arrested yesterday, because she was protesting the death of her daughter being shot by a lunatic who got a record of— not so good.

“And then they try and protect him and they do things— what they’ve done to that family. That they shot her, there was no reason, and then they arrested— because the mother was in a group— and they arrested yesterday the mother of Ashli Babbitt. So she loses her daughter and then on top of it, she gets arrested. “We’re not gonna let this go on. We’re not gonna let this go. on these people are horrible, horrible. And what they’ve done to protest us. I mean, these were protesters, they were protesting a dishonest election. “And whenever you mentioned that they don’t want to ever talk to you because they don’t want to have that out there. The one thing they don’t want to talk about is a dishonest election. Because they know and they’ve been caught.”

In footage circulated on social media by streamer Woke Societies, Micki Witthoeft was seen being handcuffed and taken into custody by multiple police officers while onlookers protested. “You murdered [Ashli] inside the Capitol, now you’re going to arrest her?” one onlooker said. “I did not murder her daughter,” one officer replied in front of the crowd of people. On Jan. 6, 2021, Babbitt, an unarmed Air Force veteran, was fatally shot by Lt. Michael Byrd. while attempting to make entry into the interior of the Capitol Building. According to The National Pulse’s Raheem Kassam, Witthoeft was arrested for “jaywalking.”

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That leak feels like warfare.

Kristi Noem Blasts Jan. 6 Committee After Social Security Numbers Leaked (CB)

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem blasted members of the now-disbanded House Jan. 6 Committee after her Social Security number, along those of her family members, were allegedly leaked to the public. In a tweet, the GOP governor appeared to suggest she would take legal action against members. “My lawyers have asked the @WhiteHouse, the @USNatArchives, and @BennieGThompson which of them is responsible for leaking the Social Security Numbers of me, my husband, my 3 kids, and my son-in-law,” she tweeted on Friday, in a post that included images of a letter her attorneys have sent to the aforementioned parties. “What specific measures and remedies will be taken to protect our identities?” — Kristi Noem (@KristiNoem) January 6, 2023

The Washington Times reported the leak: “The recently sunsetted House Jan. 6 committee released Trump White House visitor logs from December 2020 containing nearly 2,000 unreacted Social Security numbers. At least three of the numbers, inadvertently leaked as part of the hoard of documents the committee posted online in recent weeks, belonged to members of Trump’s cabinet others. Several Republican governors and floods of other Trump allies have been caught up in the privacy breach. “House Jan. 6 Committee leaks thousands of Trump allies’ Social Security numbers: Report — The Washington Times (@WashTimes) January 7, 2023”

The document was taken down on Wednesday, according to the Washington Post, which first reported the leak, but the Government Publishing Office, which was responsible for posting the file online, does not appear to have notified the individuals whose private information was leaked. Attorneys for Noem demanded to know “how the breach of privacy occurred, who was responsible, what steps each of you has taken to remedy the breach, and what specific measures and remedies will be taken to protect Governor Noem and her family in light of the public dissemination of their private information and the heightened risk for identity theft and any other future privacy violations.” Ian Fury, a spokesman for the governor, said, “To my knowledge, we were not notified. The governor was not notified” of the leak, Slay News noted.

Former Trump Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson, whose information was also leaked, told the Washington Post: “Whether it was a careless and sloppy handling of records or a deliberate disregard of decorum, either scenario is a perfunctory and callous display of government and a frightening reminder of the current state in Washington. … President Reagan was a savant indeed — the nine most frightening words to hear are ‘I am from the government and here to help.’”

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What good will it do?

Greece To Build Fence On Border With Türkiye (RT)

Greece is planning to build a new 140-km fence to cover its whole European border with neighboring Türkiye in an effort to contain the significant flows of illegal migrants, Minister of Citizen Protection Takis Theodorikakos has announced. Construction of the first 35-km span of the new fence is set to begin “immediately,” the official told the broadcaster SKAI on Saturday. “It is a final decision of the government to create a 140-kilometer fence on the Evros [River],” Theodorikakos stated. Greece and Türkiye share an approximately 200-km common border in Europe that runs primarily along the Evros River, yet there is a stretch of dry land between the two countries. Greece already has concrete and barbed wire barrier installed at over 40km of the border, namely along the span near the Turkish city of Edirne. The fence was originally erected in 2012 and was extended in 2021.


The Evros River on its own has not proven to be a sufficiently challenging obstacle for illegal migrants, Theodorikakos noted, with the eponymous province remaining a hotspot for irregular crossings. “In Evros, the Greek police, with their deployment, have prevented the illegal invasion of the country by 256,000 illegal immigrants,” the minister said without providing a time span for this “invasion.” Over the past year, the EU has seen the highest level of illegal migration since the 2015-2016 migrant crisis. According to the latest figures by Frontex, the bloc’s border agency, some 308,000 “irregular entries” were detected across the external borders of the EU during the first 11 months of 2022, constituting a sharp 68% increase from the same period in 2021. The Western Balkan and Central Mediterranean routes have seen the most illegal migrant traffic over the past year, according to Frontex.

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Just the poor parts.

Every Fourth European Has Trouble Heating Their Home (RT)

More than a quarter of Europeans are experiencing problems heating their homes and paying debts for housing and utilities, the Hungarian media reported on Friday citing a survey by the Szazadveg think tank. According to the survey, dubbed Europe Project, 26% of EU residents, or roughly 100 million people, are unable to properly heat their homes. Greeks appeared to be the worst affected, with 56% of the population facing difficulties with heating. In Portugal and France, 34% of residents described the same problems. Finland, Hungary, Austria and Denmark were the least affected, with less than 15% of residents admitting to difficulties. Every fourth respondent in the survey said they were unable to pay their heating bill at least once during the past year.


That figure was also the highest in Greece, with 51% of the population affected, followed by Cyprus with 37%, Ireland and Bulgaria, with 35% each. The respondents blamed inflation for their problems, as rising prices on everything from energy to food impact their ability to pay bills. According to the survey, heating bills have become far less affordable than in 2021. The authors noted that in 2021, based on data from Europe’s official statistics agency Eurostat, only 6.9% of European households (some 29.9 million people) were unable to adequately heat their homes, and 6.4% struggled with paying bills. The survey was conducted among 38,000 randomly selected European adults between October 13 and December 7, 2022. The research covered the EU, UK, Norway, Switzerland, Moldova, Albania, Kosovo, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, Bulgaria, Bosnia-Herzegovina.

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No other choice?!

Faced With A New Wave Of Covid, China Is Opening Its Borders (Zagorenko)

The situation is now much less dire. The authorities can focus on protecting the elderly and improving the nation’s immunity. A new push to get more people vaccinated has already been announced, although the corresponding official document does not go into specifics about how the authorities will go about it. Besides, people are much more aware of the virus and of the methods of protection. Pedestrians still go about their days in masks, still take care with hygiene and still avoid unnecessary close contacts. And more freedom does not mean that people will go out of their way to get infected. As one local Twitter user pointed out: “So in Beijing, now that everyone is free to go anywhere, ppl are exercising that right by staying at home.”

The hardest test of the new lighter rules begins on January 8, when China reopens its borders. People will be able to enter and leave the country freely and, soon after that, the Spring Festival trips will begin in earnest. Travel to and from will not be the same as before, at least at first. A number of countries, including the US, UK, France, and Spain, now have mandatory testing of everyone arriving from China to prevent the virus from spreading further. However, even if the number of daily cases rises for a short time, the world is much less vulnerable to Covid now.

China will still need to carefully weigh each step on its path towards the pre-pandemic normal. The rules might change once again and there might be setbacks or new local lockdowns. However, the process of making life easier and more predictable for a large part of the world has begun. The protests might have brought these changes about sooner than expected, or they might have simply happened at the right time. Whatever the case, China was bound to change its policy sooner or later. After all, no emergency can last forever.

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“..nervously awaiting the delivery of a further 2 million in the coming weeks, and surely lamenting that 11.6 million more are scheduled to arrive by the end of 2023..”

Switzerland Slated To Destroy Millions Of mRNA Vaccine Doses In 2023 (Eugyp)

Switzerland, home to less than 9 million people, is one of the biggest mRNA vaccine customers in the world relative to population. The’ve already received a staggering 33 million Covid vaccine doses, only a little over half of which were ever administered. The small country is now sitting on 13.5 million doses, nervously awaiting the delivery of a further 2 million in the coming weeks, and surely lamenting that 11.6 million more are scheduled to arrive by the end of 2023. The vast majority of these will sit for some months in freezers before the Swiss Confederation destroys them. The country already binned more than eleven million doses last year, the greater part of them after a deal to supply surplus snake oil to the third world via the failed Covax initiative fell through because nobody in Africa wants this stuff either.


Vaccine credulity may still be the mainstream, politically acceptable position, but revealed preferences show that enormous majorities everywhere are done with mass vaccination. Pharmaceutical executives can sing their doubtful hymns to the miraculous safety and efficacy of their jabs, but the quiet worldwide rejection of their garbage products is a stinging rebuke, suggesting that billions across the world harbour unexpressed scepticism towards the mRNA Covid vaccines. From here, it is only downhill for the vaccinators.

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Schaffer

 

 

 

 

Fungi

 

 

Great White

 

 

Walnut

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Jan 052023
 
 January 5, 2023  Posted by at 9:32 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  89 Responses »


Takeuchi Seiho Bear in snow 1940

 

US Climbs Escalation Ladder in Ukraine (Bhadrakumar)
U.S. Forces in Europe Prepare for War With Russia (Celente)
The Russia-Ukraine Conflict Is Existential For Both Sides (Lukyanov)
Effect Of EU Sanctions On Moscow Is ‘Less Than Zero’ – Verhofstadt (RT)
Russian Drones Far Cheaper Than Ukrainian Air Defenses – NYT (RT)
US Makes Europeans Suffer – De Gaulle’s Grandson (RT)
China Setting New World Energy Order – Zoltan Pozsar (RT)
US Spies Used False Russiagate Claims To Bring Twitter To Heel (Livshitz)
Schiff Asked Twitter to Censor Paul Sperry Over Impeachment Whistleblower (BB)
Capsule Summaries of all Twitter Files Threads (Taibbi)
Breathing Trouble (Bardi/Walach)
Swedes Adamant In Face Of Türkiye’s NATO Demands (RT)
A History of Dissent (Lauria)
Post-vaccine Treatment Protocol (FLCCC)

 

 

There is so much talk about McCarthy and the House Speaker contest, you’d almost think they’re trying to hide something behind it. I’ll leave that alone for now.

 

 

 

 

Bhakdi
https://twitter.com/i/status/1610685980671094784

 

 

 

 

VDB
https://twitter.com/i/status/1610443745014710278

 

 

 

 

Cause unknown

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“..although Russian intelligence would have a fair idea of the location of NATO officers conducting the Ukrainian operations, they have not been so far targeted.”

US Climbs Escalation Ladder in Ukraine (Bhadrakumar)

In all probability, the message conveyed to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov from his American counterpart Antony Blinken via Israel’s new foreign minister Eli Cohen concerned the Ukrainian missile attack on Makeyevka (Donetsk) on New Year Day at 12.02 am killing 89 Russian conscripts. Kiev claimed that up to 400 Russian soldiers might have been killed. Russian MOD has made a rare acknowledgment of scores of deaths — latest figure is 83. Moscow rarely releases figures for casualties in the war. The Russian statements stressed that US-made Himars missiles were used in the attack. The site was a “a temporary deployment facility” (a vocational school temporarily used as barracks for scores of recently mobilised troops sent by Moscow.

The incident sparked renewed public criticism over the state of Russia’s military and the decision to use civilian infrastructure to house soldiers. The First Deputy Head of the Main Military-Political Department of the Russian Armed Forces Lieutenant General Sergey Sevryukov told reporters: “It has already become obvious at present that the main cause of the occurrence was activation and large-scale use, contrary to the ban, of personal phones by personnel within the reach of enemy’s destruction means. This factor enabled the enemy to take the bearing and determine coordinates of servicemen location to deliver a missile strike. Required measures are being taken at present to exclude such tragic incidents in the future.” Apparently, blame game has begun — that the “main cause” of the tragedy was the unruly behaviour of soldiers who used mobile phones on the warfront. But there is going to be consequences.

Public pressure may increase demanding maximum use of force to end the war quickly. There is always the danger of escalation if certain unwritten, unspoken red lines in the conduct of the war are crossed. It is entirely conceivable that there could be Cold-War style “strategic deconfliction” parameters worked out between the general staff in Moscow and the Pentagon aimed at avoiding miscalculation or any set of actions (by either side) that could lead to unnecessary conflict. The US and Russian forces have been operating in Syria for years and a communications line, used daily, has helped the two sides avoid direct conflict.

Now, the New Year attack comes as the Biden administration is trying to provide billions in weaponry to Ukraine while also claiming that avoiding a direct clash with Russia has been a top US priority. At any rate, although Russian intelligence would have a fair idea of the location of NATO officers conducting the Ukrainian operations, they have not been so far targeted. That is why, the Russian MOD’s decision on Monday to highlight that US-supplied Himars missiles have killed scores of Russian soldiers on Sunday night would have caused some uneasiness in Washington. The big question is whether Moscow will also now go up the escalation ladder and directly target American military personnel deployed in Ukraine.

Of course, any killing of American military personnel in Ukraine will make very damaging headlines in the US news cycle for the Biden Administration. So far, there has not been a single instance of a body bag arriving from Ukraine. The Russian generals probably ensured that.

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The US will let other countries’ troops do the combat.

U.S. Forces in Europe Prepare for War With Russia (Celente)

U.S. troops stationed in Eastern Europe are preparing for all-out war and have been performing war simulations against Russian forces, according to a new report. The U.S.’s 101st Airborne Division deployed to Romania for the first time in 80 years. The “Screaming Eagles” as a light infantry force that is trained to take to any battlefield and fight within hours. The U.S. Army said in a statement in June that the division arrived at the Mihail Kogalniceanu Airbase to “reinforce NATO’s eastern flank and engage in multinational exercises with partners across the European continent in order to reassure allies and deter further Russian aggression.” “Being here, so close to that fight (in Ukraine), is exactly where the 101st Airborne Division is destined to be,” said Maj. Gen. JP McGee, 101st commander, during the livestreamed ceremony, Stars & Stripes reported at the time.

U.S. infantry arrived at a military base in Estonia last month to train allied troops and secure Europe’s eastern flank amid the Ukraine War. The troops are stationed at the Taara base in Võru and will train alongside Estonia forces. The base is about 20 miles from the Russian border. The troops in Romania have been training Ukrainian forces on advanced weapons systems that are being shipped into Kyiv, The New York Times reported. “You get a chance to train and operate on the very ground that you might have to defend,” McGee told the paper. AntiWar.org noted: “The Times report stressed that the 101st Airborne deployment was about deterrence. If the US were preparing to enter the war directly, it would likely send significantly more troops. While in Romania, the soldiers are also participating in coastal defense drills, and Romanian troops are practicing firing HIMARS rocket launch systems into the Black Sea.”

The Pentagon has said it is sending U.S. troops into Ukraine, under the guise that they are going there not to fight, but instead just to track the billions of dollars of weapons the West sent into the country. NBC News, citing three senior U.S. officials, reported last month that there is discussion in the White House about sending additional troops into the country to help the U.S. track weapons. The report said there are already U.S. troops in the country, again, under the guise that all they are doing is monitoring weapons. The New York Times reported in June that Ukraine is filled with CIA officers and special forces from the West. The report said the CIA personnel have been working out of Kyiv. We reported in October that there are currently more U.S. special forces and CIA agents in Ukraine today than there were at the beginning of the war.

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“No mere recital from the actor, but earnest loss he must reveal..”

The Russia-Ukraine Conflict Is Existential For Both Sides (Lukyanov)

The year 2022 turned everything inside out. With the benefit of hindsight – having overcome the shock everyone experienced in February, when Russian troops entered Ukraine – it’s not that difficult to explain how it came about. And even how it could not have been otherwise. Also, after a full ten months, it is pretty clear why the campaign did not go as planned. The latter is probably even a positive thing. The façade crumbled, exposing the frame. It was not quite as imagined. Some structures thought to be load-bearing had surprisingly sagged. Others, suspected of being unreliable, stood up stronger than had been thought. There are fewer illusions, though the information machine works to maintain them. But this is basically by inertia. The need for a radical renewal of the architecture is obvious.

The Ukrainian landmine was laid when the Soviet Union collapsed. The grim realists knew from the outset that the separation of what had long been a single space – where it was almost impossible to draw a natural boundary – would not be possible. In Russia, as at the bottom of a peat bog, disagreement with the loss of territories of defining cultural and historical significance was smoldering. In Ukraine, radical nationalists lamented that independence came ‘cost-free’ and believed that nations are born in wars. The extremes have now converged. Russia took up the Ukrainian issue when it became central to the world order. Although it may have been the other way round – it became so important because Russia tried to solve it. The tipping point was probably former President Viktor Yanukovich’s decision on whether to tilt West (to the EU) or East (towards the EEU), back in 2013.

The two divergent positions are now firmly entwined. And our country faces fierce resistance, because of the desire of the neighboring state to defend its identity, and the readiness of Western grandees to sacrifice this very nation to put Moscow in its place. However, Russia voluntarily submitted itself to this stress test, and its future depends on the outcome. At this juncture, it is no longer possible to reverse course. Furthermore, the uncertainty of the objectives of the ‘special military operation’ reflects the overarching nature of the challenge. The goals won’t be fully understood until the end, because they won’t be apparent until that comes to pass. The peculiarity of the modern world is that there is no such thing as an outright victory. This is the main paradox here – war has returned as a form of state relations, but it does not involve a clear outcome in the classical sense.

This dramatically complicates the nature of competition and makes it inherently non-linear. And its result is thus ‘hybrid’, with the decisive factor the endurance and resilience of states under the volley of different blows that abound in the unpredictable international environment. The Russia-Ukraine conflict has become a clash for self-determination for Russia as much as for Ukraine. In the literal sense: as in who we are. While Ukraine’s self-determination is similar to examples from the history of nation-state building, in Russia the situation is far more complex. Many of the concepts from the past will not pass the test of this collision. Outright archaic positions are unsustainable in today’s global conditions, even if it seems that the world has turned backwards. But postmodern imitation will no longer work either. It’s too real and tragic. “No mere recital from the actor, but earnest loss he must reveal,” to quote the writer Boris Pasternak, in his poem ‘I Should Have Known that this Would Happen’.

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“We are rewarding Russia for its war against us!”

Russia has no war vs the EU. You’re just making that up.

Effect Of EU Sanctions On Moscow Is ‘Less Than Zero’ – Verhofstadt (RT)

The EU’s sanctions on Russia over the Ukraine conflict have been a complete failure, Belgian member of the European Parliament Guy Verhofstadt said on Monday. He added that the EU was only “rewarding” Russia by increasing imports from the country. Writing on Twitter, Verhofstadt, who served as Belgian prime minister from 1999 to 2008 and has been an MEP since 2009, claimed that the effect of the EU’s nine packages of sanctions on Moscow “is less than 0.” The former PM said that in the bloc’s attempts to punish Russia, it has achieved the opposite result. “We are rewarding Russia for its war against us!” Verhofstadt also posted a chart titled ‘Still Filling Putin’s Coffers’, showing Russia-EU trade from February to August 2022. The graphic, which cites Eurostat data, shows that most EU member states, including Germany, France, Italy, and Poland, significantly increased imports from Russia. In total, only seven EU members were buying less from the country.


Following the start of Russia’s military operation in Ukraine, the EU imposed unprecedented sanctions on Moscow, targeting entire sectors of the economy. In December, the bloc, along with the G7 countries and Australia, introduced a price cap on Russian seaborne oil, setting it at $60 per barrel. In response, last week, President Vladimir Putin signed a decree banning the supply of oil and petroleum products from Russia to countries which apply these restrictions. The sanctions on Russia have exacerbated the bloc’s energy crisis, causing fuel prices and the cost of living to soar. This has prompted protests against the sanctions policy in several EU countries. In December, a demonstration organized by the right-wing Patriots party took place in Paris against the government’s stance on Russia and France’s membership in NATO. In his New Year’s address, Putin said that the West’s “full-blown sanctions war” against Moscow has largely failed to undermine the economy.

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“..using a missile against a UAV costs up to seven times more than the drone itself..”

Russian Drones Far Cheaper Than Ukrainian Air Defenses – NYT (RT)

The fact that the smaller kamikaze drones used by Russia are much cheaper than the Ukrainian air defense missiles used against them is creating problems for Kiev and its Western backers, the New York Times has acknowledged. In an article on Tuesday, the paper didn’t question Kiev’s claims that most of the UAVs launched by Russia are being shot down, but pointed out that even in this case Ukrainian air defense stocks were being exhausted. “How long can Ukraine sustain its effort when many of its defensive measures cost far more than the drones do?” the NYT wondered. In addition to trying to destroy the incoming drones with anti-aircraft guns and small-arms fire, Kiev’s forces have “also relied heavily on missiles fired from warplanes and the ground,” which are very expensive, it wrote.

The paper cited the head of the Ukrainian consultancy Molfar, Artem Starosiek, who claimed that using a missile against a UAV costs up to seven times more than the drone itself. The drones that Russia uses are priced at around $20,000 per unit, while a surface-to-air missile from Ukraine’s arsenal ranges from $140,000 for a Soviet-era S-300 to $500,000 for a US-supplied NASAM system, he said. The article claims that the drones used by Russia in Ukraine are Shahed-136s, supplied by Iran. This claim has been denied by both Moscow and Tehran on many occasions. The Russian Defense Ministry insists that its Geran-2 drones are domestically made, just like all the other hardware used in the military operation against Kiev. The Iranian Foreign Ministry has only confirmed sending a small batch of drones to Russia before the outbreak of the conflict with Ukraine, stressing that no new deliveries have been made since then.

Starosiek nevertheless defended Kiev’s strategy, arguing that it still “costs far less to shoot down a drone than to repair a damaged or destroyed power station.” However, the NYT warned that the price difference between drones and air defenses was “an imbalance that could over time favor Russia, costing Ukraine and its allies dearly, some analysts say.” According to estimations by Molfar, Russia has targeted Ukrainian military infrastructure and energy systems with some 600 UAVs since September, when they began to be used more widely. Russia drastically ramped up its strikes against Ukrainian infrastructure in early October in response to repeated Ukrainian sabotage on Russian soil, including the bombing of the Crimean Bridge, which Moscow blamed on Kiev. Although the attack was widely cheered by top Ukrainian officials, Kiev has denied any involvement.

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“I revolt and protest this intellectual dishonesty in the Ukraine crisis because the triggers of the war are the Americans and NATO..”

US Makes Europeans Suffer – De Gaulle’s Grandson (RT)

The US is making Europeans suffer by fueling the Ukraine conflict and waging a pre-planned economic war against Russia, Pierre de Gaulle, the grandson of former French President Charles de Gaulle, has said. After leading the French resistance against the Nazi occupation during World War II, Charles de Gaulle founded the modern French political system and served as president from 1959 to 1969. His grandson, a strategy and corporate finance consultant, said he believes that the Ukraine conflict was incited by the West. “I revolt and protest this intellectual dishonesty in the Ukraine crisis because the triggers of the war are the Americans and NATO,” Pierre de Gaulle told the Franco-Russian Dialogue Association last week. “The United States, unfortunately, continues the military escalation, making not only the Ukrainian population suffer, but the European population as well.”

The scale and the number of sanctions show that all of this was organized a long time in advance. It is an economic war, from which the Americans are the beneficiaries. The Americans sell their gas to Europeans for a price four to seven times higher than they do in their own country. The Western sanctions imposed on Russian fossil fuel exports have exacerbated the financial and energy crisis in Europe, making “everyone suffer in their daily lives,” de Gaulle said. He also accused former German Chancellor Angela Merkel of “knowingly contributing” to the conflict by “authorizing the Ukrainian nationalist expansion,” which came after the 2014 pro-Western coup in Kiev. The government that came to power that year sought to “annihilate Russian culture… and the ability to speak Russian” in the largely Russophone Donbass, he said.

The Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics (DPR and LPR) broke away from Ukraine following the 2014 coup. The 2014-15 Minsk accords, brokered by Germany, France, and Russia, were designed to provide a peaceful reintegration of the rebellious territories into Ukraine. Russian President Vladimir Putin cited the need to protect the people of Donbass and Kiev’s failure to implement the Minsk peace accords as reasons for launching the military operation in Ukraine in late February. The DPR and LPR, along with two other former Ukrainian territories, joined Russia after voting overwhelmingly in favor of the move in September. Merkel, as well as former Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko, stated last year that Kiev had used the accords to buy time in order to rebuild its military and economy. Ukraine has adopted several laws since 2014 that restrict the use of the Russian language in the public sphere, including education and the media.

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“..Xi Jinping’s meeting with the member states of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) in December marked “the birth of the petroyuan..”

China Setting New World Energy Order – Zoltan Pozsar (RT)

The global energy order is being reshaped as deepening energy ties between China and the Middle East signifies the rise of the petroyuan, which could challenge the petrodollar, the Financial Times reported on Wednesday, citing Credit Suisse analyst Zoltan Pozsar. According to Pozsar, China has been boosting purchases of crude and liquefied natural gas (LNG) from Iran, Venezuela, Russia, and some African nations using its national currency. However, President Xi Jinping’s meeting with the member states of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) in December marked “the birth of the petroyuan,” he said in a note to clients. At the summit, the Chinese leader confirmed that Beijing is ready to make energy purchases in yuan instead of the US dollar with GCC countries.

“China wants to rewrite the rules of the global energy market,” Pozsar said, adding that the move to de-dollarize the oil and gas trade is backed members of the BRICS alliance (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa). According to the Credit Suisse analyst, the steps towards ditching the greenback in the energy trade have intensified in the wake of the sweeping sanctions imposed by Western nations on Russia, one of the world’s major energy producers and exporters, in response to the military operation in Ukraine. Pozsar added that dollar foreign exchange reserves were militarized in the sanctions war, making the use of the currency unsafe for major exporters and importers of oil, gas, and other commodities.

Cooperation between China and the GCC may potentially involve joint exploration and production in places such as the South China Sea, as well as investment in refineries, chemicals, and plastics. Pozsar said that implementing all of these projects in the yuan would mark a massive shift in the global energy trade. He added that even if it does not replace the dollar as a reserve currency, trading in the petroyuan will nevertheless come with significant economic and financial implications for policymakers and investors.

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“Twitter was flooded with demands from so many officials, departments and agencies, they were confused and overworked. If action wasn’t taken promptly, followup emails quickly appeared, asking if action had yet been taken, and if not, why..”

US Spies Used False Russiagate Claims To Bring Twitter To Heel (Livshitz)

In a pair of blockbuster #TwitterFiles threads, this week, journalist Matt Taibbi has blown open, even wider, the media giant’s concerning collusion with the US national security state. The former Rolling Stone writer exposed how political pressure from the US Democratic Party very effectively forced the company to endorse the lie that its platform was extensively weaponized by Russia, with hugely significant consequences. The first, boldly titled ‘How Twitter Let the Intelligence Community In’, documents how in August 2017, despite dubious allegations that Russian bots and trolls were responsible for the election of Donald Trump in the mainstream media reaching fever pitch, Twitter’s hierarchy knew its platform wasn’t riddled with malign Kremlin-directed actors. [..]

After years of bending over backwards to placate the Democratic establishment, Twitter attempted to push back. Over a series of internal emails, various executives spelled out deep concerns about allowing the Center any influence over the platform, and initially rejected an FBI request for the organization to be included in the moderation club’s regular ‘industry call’. It was felt the Center’s involvement would pose “major risks … especially as the election heats up.” Eventually, the FBI offered a compromise – the CIA, NSA, and Global Engagement Center would be able to simply listen to the industry calls, but wouldn’t be active participants. Twitter relented, a decision its higher-ups seem to have quickly come to regret. Before long, the social network was being bombarded with requests to censor content and ban users from every US government body under the sun.

This extended to US government officials asking for users to be banned because they didn’t personally like an individual in question. Notorious House Intelligence Committee chief Adam Schiff, a Democrat, once asked Twitter to ban journalist Paul Sperry, due to his critical reporting on the Committee’s work. After initially refusing, Sperry was later suspended. Almost every other request was granted immediately, even those from the Global Engagement Center. This included demands to ban independent media outlets falsely claimed to be “GRU-controlled” and linked “to the Russian government.” In one email, a former CIA staffer remarked that Twitter would soon be unable to deny a single request. “Our window on that is closing,” they said.

In the weeks before the 2020 Presidential election, Twitter was flooded with demands from so many officials, departments and agencies, they were confused and overworked. If action wasn’t taken promptly, followup emails quickly appeared, asking if action had yet been taken, and if not, why, and when it would be. In one request, an FBI official even apologized “in advance for your workload.” Once, a no doubt exhausted senior attorney at the social network complained internally, “my inbox is really f***ed up at this point.” Previous #TwitterFiles threads exposed how the FBI paid the social network $3 million to process its requests. Based on the most recent disclosures, it’s clear the company and its staff were significantly underpaid for their efforts. Future releases promise yet further bombshell revelations, but the long-hidden truths divulged so far should prompt every Twitter user to reflect how the site for many years in secret operated as an effective wing of the US intelligence – and may well still do so.

Tucker Russia

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He should disappear.

Schiff Asked Twitter to Censor Paul Sperry Over Impeachment Whistleblower (BB)

House Intelligence Committee chair Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) pressured Twitter to censor the account of Paul Sperry, an investigative journalist who first published the name of the so-called impeachment “whistleblower.” In September 2019, Schiff announced that his committee had reached an agreement with the “whistleblower,” who allegedly filed a complaint about President Donald Trump’s July 2019 phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, to testify in his inquiry, which became the impeachment investigation. But Schiff never produced the whistleblower and later claimed, falsely, that the whistleblower had a “right” to anonymity. Schiff also lied about his contact with the “whistleblower,” first claiming that his committee had never spoken to the whistleblower, then admitting — after a New York Times report to the contrary — that they had done so.

Later, Sperry published an article at RealClearInvestigations identifying the “whistleblower” as a CIA analyst named Eric Ciaramella, who had worked at the Trump White House before returning to the CIA. Sperry also published other articles identifying links between Schiff’s committee and aides who had worked at the Trump White House and who had been “holdovers” from the Obama administration. The media and the tech industry suppressed the name of the whistleblower, and Schiff refused to allow Republicans to ask questions about the whistleblower during the impeachment investigation. Even Chief Justice John Roberts played along, censoring a question from Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) during the Senate impeachment trial about the whistleblower.

On Tuesday, in the latest installment of the “Twitter files,” investigative journalist Matt Taibbi produced email evidence showing that Schiff’s office had asked Twitter, in writing, to censor Sperry after the November 2020 election, claiming (without evidence) that Sperry had spread “QAnon conspiracies” on the platform. Sperry told the New York Post Tuesday that Schiff’s claims were false and that he had never promoted QAnon: In an email Tuesday, Sperry told The Post, “I have never promoted any ‘QAnon conspiracies.’ Ever. Not on Twitter. Not anywhere.” “Schiff was just angry I outed his impeachment whistleblower and tried to get me banned,” he said. “I challenge Schiff to produce evidence to back up his defamatory remarks to Twitter.” Sperry also said, “This is a scurrilous smear, but par for the course for the unscrupulous Chairman Schiff.”

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Library.

Capsule Summaries of all Twitter Files Threads (Taibbi)

It’s January 4th, 2023, which means Twitter Files stories have been coming out for over a month. Because these are weedsy tales, and may be hard to follow if you haven’t from the beginning, I’ve written up capsule summaries of each of the threads by all of the Twitter Files reporters, and added links to the threads and accounts of each. At the end, in response to some readers (especially foreign ones) who’ve found some of the alphabet-soup government agency names confusing, I’ve included a brief glossary of terms to help as well.

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Masks.

Breathing Trouble (Bardi/Walach)

Just like smoking a single cigarette never killed anyone, wearing a face mask for a few hours or a few days does not cause irreversible damage either. But the immediate short-term physiological effects are detectable: A recent study led by Pritam Sukul, senior medical scientist at the University Medicine Rostock in Germany, found masks to cause hypercarbia (high concentration of CO2 in the blood), arterial oxygen decline, blood pressure fluctuations, and concomitant physiological and metabolic effects. On a time scale of weeks or months, these effects appear to be reversible. But how can we know what can happen to people who wear masks for several hours a day for several years? Will we have to wait for decades before concluding that masks are bad for people s health, as was the case with cigarettes?

Not necessarily, for we are able to assess face masks in terms of the air quality breathed by the wearers. One important parameter for air quality is CO2 concentration. Over the years, a lot of data has been accumulated in this field from miners, astronauts, submariners, and other people exposed to high concentrations of CO2 . Measurable negative effects on mental alertness already occur at CO2 concentrations over 600 parts per million (ppm), which is only slightly higher than the average concentration in open air (a little more than 400 ppm). Values higher than 1,000-2,000 ppm are not recommended for living spaces, especially for children and pregnant women. 5,000 ppm is the commonly accepted limit in working environments or in submarines and spaceships. Concentrations in the range of 10,000-20,000 ppm are not immediately life-threatening but can only be withstood for short periods.

Even higher concentrations may lead to loss of consciousness and death. So what kind of CO2 concentration are people exposed to when they wear a face mask? Measuring the concentration of CO2 inside the small volume of a face mask while it is being used poses practical problems, and there are no standardised methods and procedures to evaluate this. Nevertheless, during the past few years, several papers dealing with this subject were published. Some of these papers were criticised, but often baselessly. For instance, some fact checkers claimed that the same amount of CO2 could be found without face masks in exhaled breath. This is true, but trivial. The studies mentioned above measured the amount of CO2 in the inhaled air under face masks; the fact checkers measured the air exhaled. Other fact checkers provided a priori statements by experts, including a sports reporter.

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“..79% of respondents think their country should “stand up for Swedish laws” in the face of Türkiye’s demands..”

Swedes Adamant In Face Of Türkiye’s NATO Demands (RT)

An overwhelming majority of Swedes believe their country should not betray its legal principles to meet Türkiye’s conditions for ratifying Stockholm’s NATO bid, according to a new Ipsos poll commissioned by Swedish daily Dagens Nyheter and released on Monday. The survey found that 79% of respondents think their country should “stand up for Swedish laws” in the face of Türkiye’s demands. This red line, they said, should not be crossed even “if that delays joining NATO.” Only 10% said that “Sweden should try to join NATO as soon as possible,” even if it entails legal compromises, while 11% said they were not sure.

The poll shows only minor discrepancies in opinion between various social groups. Men are said to be more open to compromises with Ankara than women, although they also tend to insist on protecting the country’s legal principles. As for differences along political lines, those who vote for right-wing parties are more inclined to agree to a give-and-take approach. Despite the delays in joining NATO, the poll revealed that as many as 60% of Swedes still want to become part of the US-led military bloc, with only 19% opposing Stockholm’s membership bid. The survey, which was conducted between December 6 and 18, is based on 1,248 interviews with Swedish voters.

In June, NATO agreed to accept Sweden and Finland to the bloc, but their membership bid has yet to be ratified by all members of the alliance, with Hungary and Türkiye’s approval still pending. Ankara has been reluctant to finalize the accession process, with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan pushing Sweden and Finland to do more to combat Kurdish “terrorism,” including extraditing people that Türkiye accuses of having terrorist links. In early December, Sweden reportedly made some progress in this regard, handing over a man to Türkiye who had been convicted in his home country of being a member of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party. Two weeks later, however, Sweden’s Supreme Court blocked the extradition of Bulent Kenes, a former editor-in-chief of Zaman Daily who Ankara accused of being involved in an attempt to topple Erdogan in 2016.

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Good to remember.

A History of Dissent (Lauria)

The United States was founded by dissenters. The Declaration of Independence is one of history’s most significant dissenting documents, inspiring people seeking freedom around the world, from the French revolutionists to Ho Chi Minh, who based Vietnam’s declaration of independence from France on the American declaration. But over the centuries a corrupt centralization of American power seeking to maintain and expand its authority has at times sought to crush the very principle of dissent which was written into the United States Constitution. Freedom to dissent was first threatened by the second president. Just eight years after the adoption of the Bill of Rights, press freedom had become a threat to John Adams, whose Federalist Party pushed through Congress the 1798 Alien and Sedition Acts.

They criminalized criticism of the federal government. There were 25 prosecutions and 10 convictions, under the Sedition Act. The acts expired and some repealed by 1802. The Union then shut down newspapers during the U.S. Civil War. Woodrow Wilson came within one vote in the Senate of creating official government censorship in the 1917 Espionage Act. The 1918 Alien and Sedition Act that followed jailed hundreds of people for speech until it was repealed in 1921. Since the 1950s, McCarthyism has become the byword for one of the worst periods of repression of dissent in U.S. history. The closest we’ve come to Wilson’s troubling dream is the Biden administration’s Disinformation Governance Board under the Department of Homeland Security, which after heavy criticism was disbanded.

The roots of repression are in the earliest English settlers in North America, described in The Scarlet Letter and applied to McCarthyism in Arthur Miller’s The Crucible. Though its industrial and scientific achievements are most lauded, America’s tradition of dissent is probably the greatest thing in U.S. history and it is once again under threat.

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Protocol to get rid of vaxx.

Post-vaccine Treatment Protocol (FLCCC)

Major public health authorities do not recognize post-COVID-vaccine injuries and no official definition exists. However, a temporal correlation between receiving a COVID-19 vaccine and the beginning or worsening of a patient’s clinical manifestations is sufficient to diagnose a COVID-19 vaccine-induced injury, when symptoms are otherwise unexplained by concurrent causes. Since there are no published reports detailing how to manage vaccine-injured patients, our treatment approach is based on the postulated pathogenetic mechanism, clinical observation, and patient anecdotes. Treatment must be individualized according to each patient’s presenting symptoms and disease syndromes. Chances are, not all patients will respond equally to the same intervention; a particular intervention may be life-saving for one patient and completely ineffective for another. Early treatment is essential; the response to treatment will most likely be attenuated when treatment is delayed.

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Trump 1991

 

 

 

Musk electric planes
https://twitter.com/i/status/1610745168743006209

 

 

Tiger spoons

 

 

Sunfish

 

 

Octopus

 

 

Samoyed

 

 

 

 

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Dec 282022
 
 December 28, 2022  Posted by at 9:40 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  77 Responses »


Lorenzo Monaco (Piero di Giovanni) Nativity 1406-10

 

The Most Important Question (Saker)
US Should Think Twice Before Contemplating ‘Decapitating Strike’ – Lavrov (RT)
Russia Issues Cyber Warning About Ukraine (RT)
US Adviser To Ukraine Calls For Cluster Bombs (RT)
Putin Bans Russian Oil Exports To Countries That Implement Price Cap (R.)
Every Social Media Company Censoring For Government – Elon Musk (RT)
63% of Americans Want FBI ‘Censorship’ of Twitter Investigated (ET)
Twitter Won’t Go Bankrupt Anytime Soon – Musk (RT)
World Economic Forum Cancels Twitter (Schachtel)
TEACH Your Kids, and LEARN Yourself (Denninger)
CIA Should Get Out of the Laboratory (John Kiriakou)
Fighting the ‘Psyopcracy’ (Lauria)
What Did Nancy Pelosi Know and When Did She Know It? (Julie Kelly)
Do Covid mRNA Vaccines Damage Our Immune Systems? (Berenson)
The Sudden Decline In Birth Rates Post-Vaccination (Horowitz)

 

 

 

 

Rogan Gates

 

 

 

 

libsoftiktok

 

 

 

 

Julian

 

 

 

 

 

 

Existential: “So, will we make it to December 31, 2023? Maybe, but this is by no means sure.”

The Most Important Question (Saker)

For Russia this war is clearly, undeniably and officially an existential one. To dismiss this reality would be the height of folly. When the strongest nuclear power on the planet declares, repeatedly, that this is an existential war everybody ought to really take it seriously and not go into deep denial. For the US Neocons this is also an existential war: if Russia wins, then NATO loses and, therefore, the US loses too. Which means that all those SOBs who for months fed everybody nonsense about Russia loosing the war to the general public will be held responsible for the inevitable disaster.

[..] I submit that the fact that the US ruling class is seriously contemplating both a “limited” use of “tactical” nukes and “decapitating strikes” is a very good indicator of the fact that the US is running out of Wunderwaffen and that the Neocons are desperate. And to those who might be tempted to accuse me of hyperbole or paranoid delusions I will say the following: This war is NOT, repeat, NOT about the Ukraine (or Poland or the three Baltic statelets). At its absolute minimum this is a war about the future of Europe. Fundamentally it is a war about the complete reorganization of our planet’s international order. I would even argue that the outcome of this war will have a bigger impact that either WWI or WWII. The Russians clearly understand this (see video above if you doubt that). And so do the Neocons, even if they don’t speak about it.

The current situation is much more dangerous than even the Cuban missile crisis or the standoff in Berlin. At least then both sides openly admitted that the situation was really dangerous. This time around, however, the ruling elites of the West are using their formidable PSYOP/propaganda capability to conceal the true scope what is really going on. If every citizen of the US (and EU) understood that there is a nuclear and conventional cross-hairs painted on his/her head things might be different. Alas, this is clearly not the case, hence the non-existent peace movement and the quasi consensus about pouring tens of BILLIONS of dollars into the Ukrainian black hole. Right now, the crazies are playing around with all sorts of silly ideas, including booting Russia off the UNSC (not gonna happen, since both Russia and China have veto power) or even creating a “peace conference” about the Ukraine without Russia’s participation (in a remake of the “friends of Syria” and “friends of Venezuela” thingie). Well, good luck with that! Apparently Guaido and Tikhanovskaia are not enough to discourage the Neocons and they are now repeating the exact same nonsense with “Ze”.

So, will we make it to December 31, 2023? Maybe, but this is by no means sure. Clearly, this is not an assumption the Kremlin makes, hence the truly immense strengthening of all of Russia’s strategic deterrence capabilities (both nuclear and conventional). God willing, the old adage “si vis pacem, para bellum” will save the day, as Russia is very clearly prepared for any time of conflict, including a nuclear one. China will also get there soon, but it is likely that 2023 will see some kind of end to the Ukrainian war: either a Russian victory in the Ukraine or a full-scale continental war which Russia will also win, (albeit at a much higher cost!). So by the time the Chinese will be truly ready (they probably need another 2-5 years) the world will be a very different place. For all these reasons I submit that 2023 might well be one of the most important years in human history. How many of us will actually survive it is an open question.

Why is Russia Conducting its Special Military Operation this Way?

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Twice is by no means enough.

US Should Think Twice Before Contemplating ‘Decapitating Strike’ – Lavrov (RT)

Reported comments by US officials about the possibility of a “decapitating strike” against Russia strongly suggest that Washington does not rule out the assassination of President Vladimir Putin, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said in an interview with TASS news agency published on Tuesday. The minister noted that some “‘unnamed officials from the Pentagon actually threatened to conduct a ‘decapitating strike’ on the Kremlin…What we are talking about is the threat of the physical elimination of the head of the Russian state,” he said. The top diplomat went on to warn against such a line of thinking. “If such ideas are actually being nourished by someone, this someone should think very carefully about the possible consequences of such plans.”

Lavrov was apparently referring to a September article by Newsweek, which alleged that US defense officials are considering a number of options to respond against a potential Russian nuclear strike, including “a decapitation strike to kill Putin in the heart of the Kremlin.” Fears of a possible nuclear conflict have been sparked in the West after Putin said in September that Moscow would use “all means” necessary to defend Russia and its people if its territorial integrity is threatened. However, Moscow has repeatedly stated that it has no plans to deploy atomic weapons, maintaining that a nuclear war should never be fought.

The foreign minister also accused some of America’s partners of embracing a confrontational approach in the nuclear sphere. “They seem to have gone completely beyond the bounds of decency,” he said, recalling that former UK Prime Minister Liz Truss “without a shadow of a doubt declared during the election debates that she was quite ready to order a nuclear strike.” Lavrov also recalled Ukraine’s statements on the matter, saying “I not even mentioning the Kiev regime’s provocations, that go off the chart. [Ukrainian President] Vladimir Zelensky went as far as to demand preventive nuclear strikes by NATO countries on Russia. This is also beyond the bounds of what is acceptable,” he noted.

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“..the US-led military bloc “is essentially distributing digital weapons in an uncontrolled fashion” via Ukraine..”

Russia Issues Cyber Warning About Ukraine (RT)

Ukraine poses a global challenge to the international community, as the country is being used by NATO as a vehicle for the uncontrolled sharing of cyberweapons, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Oleg Syromolotov said on Wednesday. Speaking to RIA Novosti, Syromolotov stated that the “threats posed by Ukraine in the information space are of a universal nature.” He went on to say that the US-led military bloc “is essentially distributing digital weapons in an uncontrolled fashion” via Ukraine. These activities could trigger “unpredictable consequences for all members of the international community,” the deputy foreign minister warned. “Today, it is Russia which is in the crosshairs, and tomorrow it may be any other state that Washington dislikes.”

Syromolotov did not elaborate on the type of weapons he meant, but noted that after Russia began its military operation in the neighboring state in late February, it faced “unprecedented external aggression in the information space,” with the number of cyber-attacks on Russia increasing by as much as 80%. Earlier, he claimed that these attacks mostly come from the EU and North America. In October, he said that the US Department of Defense and National Security Agency (NSA) encourage “Russophobia” among international hackers while leveraging the private sector, including tech giant Microsoft, to “implement their aggressive plans.” The US-based company has committed more than $400 million in support of Kiev.

In early August, Syromolotov also claimed that the US and their allies had admitted to creating a volunteer “IT-army of Ukraine” to attack Russian infrastructure. This came after General Paul Nakasone, the head of US Cyber Command, confirmed that Washington had “conducted a series of operations” in support of Kiev, including offensive, defensive, and information operations. In September, the Washington Post revealed that the US had developed a network of fake social media accounts to conduct psychological and information warfare and spread pro-Western narratives. It allegedly deployed hundreds of accounts over the past five years, to advance “anti-Russia narratives.”

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“..though the export of such weapons has been banned by Congress, media outlets such as Politico have suggested that President Joe Biden and even his Secretary of State Antony Blinken could potentially override this ban.”

US Adviser To Ukraine Calls For Cluster Bombs (RT)

Dan Rice, an American adviser to the Ukrainian military, has called on Washington to authorize the delivery of cluster munitions to Kiev to increase its “base lethality” and “win the war” against Russia. During an interview with CNN last week, Rice, who is officially the special adviser to the Commander-in-Chief of Ukraine’s Armed Forces, insisted that the US “really needs to” supply Kiev’s forces with cluster bombs. They are like throwing “a flame thrower at a bunch of ants” and would “multiply the artillery shells by five to ten times more lethal,” he argued, according to a transcript posted by the channel. “This is how you increase the base lethality and win the war. If we want to win it, we need to give them something like that,” he told the outlet, calling cluster bombs a “game changer.”

However, he noted that US President Joe Biden’s administration is not currently willing to supply such munitions to Ukraine, as it would anger Western European states that have signed a treaty banning these weapons. “According to our own policy, we have concerns about the use of those kinds of munitions,” US National Security Council spokesman John Kirby told journalists earlier this month. The 2008 Convention on Cluster Munitions (CCM) banning these types of weapons was signed by over 100 nations, including most EU member states. Russia, the US and Ukraine have not signed the Convention. One of the main concerns related to cluster bombs is the large amount of unexploded munitions left behind after strikes which pose a threat to civilians.

Rice, however, insists that Kiev forces would use these weapons responsibly and “clean up” after themselves “as soon as they liberate a town.” Russia has repeatedly accused Kiev of using Soviet-made cluster bombs both before and after Moscow launched its military campaign against the country. In March, the Ukrainian army reportedly used a Tochka-U missile with a cluster payload to strike the center of Donetsk, leaving over 20 civilians dead and dozens injured. In October, Russian officials accused Kiev’s forces of using a cluster munition for the US-made HIMARS rocket launcher to strike a river crossing in Kherson, which killed four civilians, including a journalist. Kiev has denied responsibility for the attacks.

The US is believed to be sitting on a stockpile of cluster munitions but has so far refrained from officially sending any of it to Ukraine. However, even though the export of such weapons has been banned by Congress, media outlets such as Politico have suggested that President Joe Biden and even his Secretary of State Antony Blinken could potentially override this ban.

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Consistent.

Putin Bans Russian Oil Exports To Countries That Implement Price Cap (R.)

President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday delivered Russia’s long-awaited response to a Western price cap, signing a decree that bans the supply of crude oil and oil products from Feb. 1 for five months to nations that abide by the cap. The Group of Seven major powers, the European Union and Australia agreed this month to a $60-per-barrel price cap on Russian seaborne crude oil effective from Dec. 5 over Moscow’s “special military operation” in Ukraine. The cap is close to the current price for Russian oil, but well beneath the windfall price Russia was able to sell for this year and that helped offset the impact of financial sanctions on Moscow.


Russia is the world’s second-largest oil exporter after Saudi Arabia, and a major disruption to its sales would have far reaching consequences for global energy supplies. The decree, published on a government portal and the Kremlin website, was presented as a direct response to “actions that are unfriendly and contradictory to international law by the United States and foreign states and international organisations joining them”.

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“..mountains of domestic moderation requests.”

Every Social Media Company Censoring For Government – Elon Musk (RT)

All social media platforms work with the US government to censor content, Twitter CEO Elon Musk claimed on Tuesday. Documents released by Musk following his purchase of Twitter showed that the platform colluded with the FBI, CIA, Pentagon and other government agencies to suppress information on elections, Ukraine, and Covid-19. “*Every* social media company is engaged in heavy censorship, with significant involvement of and, at times, explicit direction of the government,” Musk tweeted, adding that “Google frequently makes links disappear, for example.” Musk was referring to internal Twitter communications published by journalist Matt Taibbi, which suggested that the platform’s senior executives held regular meetings with members of the FBI and CIA, during which the agencies gave them lists of “hundreds of problem accounts” to suspend in the runup to the 2020 election.

In addition to Twitter, the government was in contact “with virtually every major tech firm,” Taibbi claimed. “These included Facebook, Microsoft, Verizon, Reddit, even Pinterest.” CIA agents “nearly always” sat in on meetings of these firms with the FBI’s Foreign Influence Task Force, Taibbi claimed, explaining that although this task force was convened to fight alleged election interference by foreign states, it made “mountains of domestic moderation requests.” A lawsuit filed earlier this year by the attorneys general of Missouri and Louisiana alleges that officials from no fewer than 12 government agencies met weekly with representatives of Twitter, Facebook, and other Big Tech firms in 2020 to decide which narratives and users to censor, with topics ranging from alleged election interference to Covid-19.

A self-described “free speech absolutist,” Musk purchased Twitter for $44 billion in October. He has since released batches of documents shedding light on the platform’s previously opaque censorship policies. Published by several independent journalists, these document dumps have shown how Twitter suppressed information damaging to Joe Biden’s election campaign, colluded with the FBI to remove content the agency wanted hidden, assisted the US military’s online influence campaigns, and censored “anti-Ukraine narratives” on behalf of multiple US intelligence agencies. The FBI said last week that correspondence between its agents and Twitter staff “show nothing more than examples of our tradition [of] longstanding and ongoing federal government and private sector engagements.”

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Let’s see them do it.

63% of Americans Want FBI ‘Censorship’ of Twitter Investigated (ET)

A majority of Americans want Congress to investigate whether the FBI was involved in censoring posts on Twitter and other social media sites following new revelations from billionaire CEO Elon Musk’s release of the “Twitter Files,” a poll released on Dec. 26 found. A total of 63 percent of likely voters think Congress should probe “whether the FBI was involved in censoring information on social media sites” and only 22 percent oppose such an investigation, the poll conducted by Rasmussen Reports found. Another 15 percent said they weren’t decided. Rasmussen also found that 63 percent “believe it is likely that the FBI encouraged social media sites like Facebook and Twitter” to “suppress, silence, or reduce the reach of certain political speech and speakers.”

About 27 percent said it isn’t likely that the FBI didn’t try to silence or suppress political speech on social media, and 11 percent said they’re not sure. About 46 percent view the FBI unfavorably, while 50 percent view the bureau favorably, the poll showed. Some 74 percent of Democrats have a favorable opinion of the FBI, while only 34 percent of Republicans share the same perception. About 40 percent of Republicans, 28 percent of unaffiliated voters, and 10 percent of Democrats have a “very unfavorable” opinion of the law enforcement agency, it found. The survey was released after several journalists published Twitter’s internal communications, showing that the FBI had extensive communications with Twitter’s previous management before Musk’s takeover. Starting in early December, Musk endorsed the disclosure of that information, known as the “Twitter Files.”

House Republicans have signaled they’re willing to conduct a top-to-bottom of investigation of the FBI following the recent disclosures on Twitter. House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) have floated a Church Committee-style probe, referring to the 1970s investigations led by then-Sen. Frank Church into allegations of U.S. government spying on its own citizens. “We’ve been looking at a Church-style committee to look at this,” Jordan told Just the News last week. McCarthy also told Fox News, “We’ve got to get to the very bottom, and I think just subpoenas are starting, but you’re almost going to have to have a Church-style investigation to reform the FBI, the more that we are learning.”

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“..in the beginning, we’ll make a lot more mistakes because I’m new. Hey, I just got here, man!“

Twitter Won’t Go Bankrupt Anytime Soon – Musk (RT)

Elon Musk, the CEO of Twitter, has stated that the social media platform is no longer “in the fast lane to bankruptcy.” However, Musk said that there is a lot that needs to be done on the platform. “But overall it seems to be heading in a good direction,” he said. Musk said over the weekend on the All-In podcast that the company will not be filing for bankruptcy soon. He said, “We’ve got the expenses reasonably under control, so the company’s not in the fast lane to bankruptcy anymore. It has been quite a roller coaster. It has its highs and lows, to say the least, but overall it seems to be going in a good direction.” Following the podcast, Musk tweeted saying that Twitter is not secure yet and there is still “much to do.” The Twitter boss further shared on the podcast: “My error rate and sort of being the chief twit will be less over time but, in the beginning, we’ll make a lot more mistakes because I’m new. Hey, I just got here, man!”


He added: “If you look at the actual amount of improvement that has happened at Twitter in terms of having costs that aren’t insane and shipping product that, on balance, is good, I think that’s great. We’re executing well, and getting things done.” The billionaire first warned about the prospect of bankruptcy for Twitter just a few weeks after he took over the social media platform. After purchasing Twitter for about $44 billion at the end of October, Musk immediately made some drastic changes to the platform as he focused on free speech. Soon the company lost half of its top 100 advertisers which made up a large chunk of Twitter’s revenue. Since then Musk has been trying to generate revenue for the social media company, including charging $8 ($11 for iPhone users) a month for the Twitter blue checkmark.

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Schwab goes TikTok.

World Economic Forum Cancels Twitter (Schachtel)

Prior to its upcoming conference in Davos next month, the World Economic Forum (WEF) appears to have joined the cancel campaign against Twitter, taking to recommending Chinese state-controlled social media apps to “follow along” with Davos Man into the future. Twitter is noticeably absent from the entities listed on the organization’s “How to follow Davos 2023” social media pamphlet, and that appears to be no accident. To stay up to speed with all that is happening within the invite-only doors of the ruling class confab, the WEF recommends following along through a handful of social media sites. They include the U.S.-based narrative-compliant Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and YouTube, along with the Chinese social media apps TikTok WeChat, and Weibo.

Twitter, which has freed itself from the grasp of the WEF-endorsed censorship-compliant social apps, is no longer included. Through its founder Klaus Schwab and partner organizations, the WEF has a very cozy relationship with the Chinese government. Davos recently revealed that their China office now has 40 full time staffers. Moreover, every year in Beijing, the WEF hosts its “Annual Meeting of the New Champions,” which facilitates partnerships between international businesses and the Chinese Community Party. In 2018, the CCP awarded Klaus Schwab with its China Reform Friendship Medal, a medal for non-Chinese people who do the CCP’s bidding overseas. Davos 2023 will feature Shou Zi Chew, the CEO of TikTok, on stage. First reported by The Dossier, he will appear at an event titled “Tackling Harm in The Digital Era.”

In case you missed it, The Dossier has obtained an early, partial list of both events and confirmed speakers for Davos 2023. On the agenda for the 2023 conference includes event titles such as Why We Need Battery Passports, Leading The Charge Through Earth’s New Normal, A Living Wage For All, Enabling An Equitable Transition, and Beyond The Rainbow: Advancing LGBTQ+ Rights, among others. The Bird App has faced a ferocious cancel campaign following its change of management. Elon Musk’s pledge to turn Twitter into a free speech platform has met major resistance from the institutional corporate and governmental ruling class. Several WEF partners, such as BlackRock, have joined the attacks against Twitter, boycotting the platform in protest of its “content moderation” policies.

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“Use your head. It’s Winter.”

TEACH Your Kids, and LEARN Yourself (Denninger)

Cold is much more dangerous than heat is. I can always take off more of my clothes and as long as I can find a source of water and shade, which is not all that hard in most places (Death Valley and similar are exceptions, of course) I won’t die. In 0F cold with the wind blasting at 30kts if I’m caught without shelter and a means of keeping warm I’m dead within hours every single time. Easy times and nostrums make for soft people because thinking becomes optional, or so said people come to believe. When bad things happen soft people die. Don’t be one of them. You were conned into believing a pack of lies, starting with the weather and that this is “all man’s fault” when its warm and then, magically, “all man’s fault” when its cold and is “unprecedented” when utterly none of that is true.

Nashville, which is well south of Buffalo, had a daily mean record low of -5F in 1985. That is not “once in a lifetime”; I was an adult in 1985 and that is a 24 hour mean temperature! Buffalo had a -8F record recorded in 1993 and in fact had a two-day nasty cold snap over Christmas that year so save me the “never before” nonsense as I see plenty of single-digit high temperatures recorded across December in Buffalo, as was the case where I used to live that was at roughly-equivalent latitude, and it often snowed like Hell too because I was on the leeward side of a large lake just as Buffalo is. You were led to believe that magic little box in your pocket could always summon help immediately and you’d get it if you needed it. In short you were led to believe that whatever befell you wouldn’t impact everyone else like, for example, the dude with the tow truck.

What happens when the roads become impassable? Even if your phone works that doesn’t mean someone can get to you. Never mind that this storm was forecast a week in advance so if you didn’t have blankets and survival gear in the car you had plenty of warning and decided to ignore it. Its WINTER. In WINTER it snows. It gets cold — life threatening cold. Cold is not “inconvenient” — it is deadly if you can’t obtain shelter from it or warmth to stave it off. That shelter and/or warmth had better be reliable, 100% of the time or you are very likely to die. If you have a good reason to go out in those conditions (such as work) you need emergency gear in your vehicle sufficient to survive for a day or two because you might need it.

I put over 30,000 miles a year on my rattrap vehicles in the late 70s and early 80s (Buick Skylark with the infamous garbage-can 231-V6 anyone?) and where I lived these sort of outdoor conditions were utterly common from Thanksgiving to roughly the end of March. If I had to go somewhere, I went — but I had proper snow tires on my car, I had emergency equipment in the vehicle and I never left to go anywhere without that stuff because if I crashed or broke down 20 miles from anything and couldn’t keep warm I was going to be dead and I knew it. Stop relying on technology; its great when it works but it doesn’t always work and sometimes the same thing that got you in trouble will prevent those who you would summon from being able to reach you. Its the same thing I tell people who go out in the backcountry — why don’t you have a PLB? Yeah, it costs a bit of money. Can you hike out 10 miles or more down that trail if you break your leg back there? Well? Use your head. It’s Winter.

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There is much more of this.

CIA Should Get Out of the Laboratory (John Kiriakou)

The Central Intelligence Agency announced in October 2020 — which was ignored until just the past few weeks, when it began circulating on social media — that it had launched something called C.I.A. Labs, “a federal laboratory and in-house research and development arm for C.I.A. to drive science and technology breakthroughs for tomorrow’s intelligence challenges.” [..] The new lab is actually not new. The C.I.A. has long had labs, whether overt or covert, where terrible things happened. Before we celebrate this new C.I.A. lab, let’s look at what its predecessors did.

MKULTRA is probably the best-known example of something awful that came out of a C.I.A. lab. The official explanation to Congress of the purpose of MKULTRA was the development of drugs to aid in interrogations. But it wasn’t quite that simple. Under MKULTRA, the C.I.A. experimented on unwitting Americans, including their own employees. The Church Committee’s investigators concluded that MKULTRA “aimed to develop mind-controlling drugs for use against the Soviet bloc” and “to produce a perfect truth drug for interrogating suspected Soviet spies and to explore other possibilities of mind control.”

MKCHICKWIT was a program whereby the C.I.A. would infiltrate foreign pharmaceutical companies to steal drug samples and information about the drugs’ development. It would then seek to duplicate or to modify those drugs in its own labs. A similar operation, dubbed MKOFTEN, started off as a study on dopamine before morphing into something far more sinister. By the end of the “study,” it had expanded to include the hallucinogen ibogaine and to LSD in the hopes of “creating a new pharmacologically active drug affecting the central nervous system to modify men’s behavior.” Thousands of active duty U.S. servicemen were unwittingly dosed during this operation.

Operation Midnight Climax was a program in the 1960s and 1970s, carried out in C.I.A. safehouses in San Francisco, to dose non-consenting individuals —mostly homeless men and prostitutes — with LSD and other drugs, monitor them from behind one-way glass, and determine if they would voluntarily reveal secrets. The prostitutes eventually were also taught to dose their clients and were then debriefed as to whether or not the johns had revealed any personal secrets. The C.I.A.’s very first foray into drug experimentation was Project CHATTER, in which both animals and humans were dosed with the drugs anabasine (a product of the tobacco plant, it is chemically similar to nicotine,) scopolamine (a drug used to treat motion sickness and post-operative nausea,) and mescaline (a hallucinogen similar to LSD and psilocybin) to see what the effects might be. The operation ended in 1953.

As you can see, the C.I.A.’s track record when it comes to developing things in labs isn’t a good one. And we only know about the above programs thanks to the Church Committee and the Freedom of Information Act. Otherwise, the information likely would still be kept from the American people.

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“..many examples have followed of completely false stories being planted into people’s minds to start and keep a war going..”

Fighting the ‘Psyopcracy’ (Lauria)

Cathy Vogan, the executive producer of Consortium News‘ webcast CN Live!, recently coined a new term to describe rule by psyops, or psychological operations: psyopcracy. According to Wikipedia: “Psychological operations (PSYOP) are operations to convey selected information and indicators to audiences to influence their emotions, motives, and objective reasoning, and ultimately the behavior of governments, organizations, groups, and individuals. The purpose of United States psychological operations is to induce or reinforce behavior perceived to be favorable to U.S. objectives.” William Casey, C.I.A. director under Ronald Reagan, said: “We’ll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false.”

Thus the American people are continuously subject to a number of psychological operations otherwise known as “the news.” U.S. intelligence officials feed journalists disinformation to create a false narrative that is intended to mislead the public and cover-up what is actually taking place. The constant reinforcement of these lies becomes entrenched in the public mind and after time comes to be accepted as unquestionable truth. [..] Through such operations, the American people were led to believe for years that the United States was winning in Vietnam, when it was actually losing, as the Pentagon Papers proved. Since then, many examples have followed of completely false stories being planted into people’s minds to start and keep a war going, the fake WMD narrative in Iraq perhaps the most infamous.

Today the war people are being fooled about is in Ukraine. Sometimes a psyop doesn’t involve inserting false information, so much as leaving out what’s true. The American people, and by extension people around the world, have been led to believe that an unprovoked Russian madman started the war last February. That’s because they are purposely not told that the war actually began in 2014 after a U.S.-backed coup in Kiev led Russian speakers in Donbass to declare independence, after which the coup government militarily attacked them. Other facts are removed from the story, such as Russia’s proposed treaties with the U.S. and NATO last December that would have prevented Russia’s intervention in the Ukrainian civil war.

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“In one case, Irving even asked a senior Democratic staffer to ‘act surprised’ when he sent key information about plans for the Joint Session on January 6, 2021 to him and his Republican counterpart. The senior Democratic staffer replied: ‘I’m startled.’”

What Did Nancy Pelosi Know and When Did She Know It? (Julie Kelly)

Analysis of how law enforcement and intelligence services failed to prepare for the “attack,” a promise made by the committee in its original sell job to the public, is buried in a relatively brief appendix at the end. And despite confirmation the government was aware violence might occur—the FBI used a threat tag, “CERTUNREST2021,” purportedly to categorize in advance information related to January 6—federal and local agencies did not prevent what the Biden regime branded a terror attack comparable to 9/11. (FBI Director Christopher Wray’s name is not mentioned once in the report and it appears unlikely he sat for a transcribed interview.)

Even so, in the face of extensive evidence that those agencies were on high alert, committee members still faulted Trump: “Few in law enforcement predicted that the President of the United States would incite a mob attack on the Capitol, that he would send them to stop the joint session knowing they were armed and dangerous, that he would further incite them against his own vice President while the attack was underway, or that he would do nothing to stop the assault for hours,” the report dishonestly stated. Another official who escaped accountability in the report is House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), the lawmaker mainly responsible for protecting Capitol grounds. Committee members avoided any criticism of Pelosi, instead allowing her to write the foreword. (It’s also unclear whether committee investigators interviewed the speaker.)

For two years, Pelosi has played the role of victimized bystander in the events of January 6 rather than being recognized as the incompetent steward of public safety she is—or worse, someone who was complicit in manufacturing the entire spectacle. After all, her filmmaker daughter just happened to be on site as the historic event, one usually considered a pro forma ceremony, went down. But a competing report also released last week by a handful of Republican House members did not let Pelosi off the hook; to the contrary, “Security Failures at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021” presented new disclosures about how Pelosi’s staff spent weeks ostensibly preparing for the electoral certification vote that afternoon.

“[Then] House Sergeant at Arms Paul Irving—who served on the Capitol Police Board by virtue of his position—succumbed to political pressures from the Office of Speaker Pelosi and House Democrat leadership leading up to January 6, 2021,” the report authored by Representatives Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), James Banks (R-Ind.) and others revealed. “He coordinated closely with the Speaker and her staff and left Republicans out of important discussions related to security. Irving only provided information to Republicans after receiving instruction from the Speaker’s office. In one case, Irving even asked a senior Democratic staffer to ‘act surprised’ when he sent key information about plans for the Joint Session on January 6, 2021 to him and his Republican counterpart. The senior Democratic staffer replied: ‘I’m startled.’”

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Your immune system is shifted to see the virus as a harmless allergen.

I use Berenson’s take, but there’s much more from Igor Chudov: Booster-Caused IgG4 Immune Tolerance Explains Excess Mortality , leaning heavily on Rintrah Radagast’s The Trainwreck Of All Trainwrecks: Billions Of People Stuck With A Broken Immune Response .

Do Covid mRNA Vaccines Damage Our Immune Systems? (Berenson)

A group of German scientists released the research as a preprint in July, but it attracted little notice until Science Immunology formally published it on Dec. 22. It is not clear if the new interest comes because the paper has passed peer review or because Covid’s continued surge is troubling researchers. Like many other scientists, the German researchers measured anti-spike-protein antibodies that people produce after Covid vaccination. Both mRNA and DNA jabs cause the body’s cells to produce spike proteins like those on the surface of the coronavirus. Those proteins then cause the immune system to make antibodies – Y-shaped proteins which attach to pieces of the spikes. In the case of a real coronavirus infection, the vaccine-generated antibodies stick to the surface spikes on the coronavirus and keep it from attaching to our cells.

Confirming hundreds of similar studies, the German researchers found that levels of a crucial antibody called Immunoglobulin G, or IgG, rose dramatically after the second and third mRNA doses. Those increased antibodies have been the triumph of the mRNA vaccines. Then the German scientists took a step other researchers had not. They looked at the specific subtype of IgG antibodies people had produced over time. IgG antibodies come in four subcategories, called IgG1 through IgG4. IgG1 is the most common, while IgG4 is the least, accounting for fewer than 5 percent of all IgG antibodies under normal circumstances. One 2009 review calls it an “odd antibody.” Most notably, unlike the other three antibodies in its class, IgG4 does little to help other immune system cells attack viral or bacterial invaders directly.

Compared to the other IgGs, it rarely promotes “phagocytosis,” the process by which other immune cells “eat” the virus or bacteria to which the antibody has attached. A 2017 review found that it “plays a limited role in the immune process.” In fact, because it provokes a weaker immune response, IgG4 has been shown to become more common in people chronically exposed to allergens. Beekeepers famously develop higher levels of IgG4 antibodies to bee venom over time, for example. When the German researchers looked at the way the classes of IgG antibodies changed over time, they saw something they weren’t expecting. Shortly after a second mRNA dose, vaccinated people had almost no IgG4 spike protein antibodies. Only 0.04 percent of all the IgG antibodies were IgG4 at that point.

But then the level of IgG4 antibodies began to rise. And they skyrocketed after the third shot, topping 19 percent about six months after that jab. In other words, they rose from 1 out of 2,500 shortly after the second shot to about 1 in 5 a few months after the third. In people who had been infected after being receiving a third dose, the percentage of IgG4 antibodies rose even further, in some cases becoming more than half all anti-spike IgG antibodies, the researchers found. The researchers then checked whether the rise in IgG4 antibodies after the third dose had any appreciable effect on people’s overall ability to destroy the virus. They found it had.

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“It ranks alongside “died suddenly” both in terms of its magnitude to humanity and the shocking degree of silence in response..”

The Sudden Decline In Birth Rates Post-Vaccination (Horowitz)

In 2010, Bill Gates famously articulated a four-part equation to reducing the world’s carbon output. Seemingly bizarrely, his first component was reducing the population — through vaccination. “The world today has 6.8 billion people. That’s headed up to about nine billion,” bemoaned Gates in his now infamous TED Talk. “Now, if we do a really great job on new vaccines, health care, reproductive health services, we could lower that by, perhaps, 10% or 15%.” Until recently, I thought this must have been a gaffe. After all, how could vaccines reduce the world’s population? Well, enter the COVID jabs – if you even want to call them vaccines – and we might have our answer. Questions about fertility issues, stillbirths, and neonatal deaths began to be raised last winter when Scotland experienced a month of higher infant mortality than at any time over the past three decades.

Then in the spring of 2022, roughly nine months after most young adults were jabbed with the COVID shots, COVID data analysists began noticing unusual drops in birth rates. The hope was that these numbers were just short-term aberrations due to some unknown transient cause. But months later, the evidence is growing too strong to ignore, suggesting a much longer-term problem, which bizarrely has garnered little concern from policymakers, governments, the medical establishment, or the media. It ranks alongside “died suddenly” both in terms of its magnitude to humanity and the shocking degree of silence in response. In fact, some media outlets were even celebrating the low birth rates without expressing any curiosity as to the sudden cause. While it’s impossible to prove definitively that the correlation equals causation, it’s stupefying that these shots are not under suspicion given that they are already tied to heart problems, blood clots, massive inflammatory syndromes, and menstrual irregularities and that the lipid nano particles are deposited largely in the ovaries and the testes.

When you are dealing with 1-in-1,000-year anomalies, it takes a civilization-changing event to account for the anomaly. COVID itself cannot be a factor in the sudden drop, because the birth rates were not declining nine months after COVID hit or even in the first year and a half. The other culprit could have been lockdowns, which perhaps disrupted travel, relationships, and cohabitation. But if that were the case, by now we should be seeing a bounce-back effect. Instead, as my friend “Gato Malo” points out on his Substack, the numbers are getting worse.

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Picasso Moth (Baorisa hieroglyphica)

 

 

 

 

Bald Eagles

 

 

Ghost crab

 

 

 

 

 

 

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


Rembrandt van Rijn The Angel Appearing to the Shepherds 1634

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stone Flynn Zel

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

Peace In Ukraine Depends On Washington – Orban (RT)

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


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

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

Only Putin Can End Ukrainian Conflict – Draghi (RT)

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

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

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

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

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I think he always has recognized reality.

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

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


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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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No gas? No problem!

German Coal Consumption Soars – Bloomberg (RT)

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

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

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

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Thought police.

Without a Hope or a Prayer (Turley)

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

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

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

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

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

Traitors (Julie Kelly)

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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Swim tigers

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Dec 222022
 
 December 22, 2022  Posted by at 9:51 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  51 Responses »


VIncent van Gogh Weeping woman seated on a basket 1883

 

NATO Could Take Out Russia in 3 Days: Congressman (NW)
Biden Explains Why Zelensky Can’t Get Everything He Wants (RT)
Putin Explains What Russia Faces In Ukraine (RT)
Russia Begins Deployment Of New State-of-Art Sarmat ICBM (RT)
Kremlin Reacts To Patriot Missiles For Ukraine (ZH)
Moscow Comments On NATO Presence In Ukraine (RT)
No Evidence Kremlin Is Behind Nord Stream Blasts – WaPo (RT)
The Harder They Come … (Jotwani)
1st Year Of New German Government: ‘Double-Whammy’ Of Double Standards (Az.)
How Musk Averted A $3 Billion Twitter Crash (ZH)
FBI Accuses ‘Conspiracy Theorists’ Of Weaponizing Twitter Files (RT)
Corruption Scandal Hurts EU ‘Credibility’ – European Council President (RT)
Kari Lake Election Challenge Trial Reveals Major Confession (WJ)
Caroline Ellison Throws SBF Under The Bus (ZH)
Ghost Town: ‘The Song Margaret Thatcher Wishes Was Never Released’ (BBC)

 

 

 

 

Tucker Zel

 

 

 

 

Cheney

 

 

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With Zelenskyin DC, Putin in Belarus and Medvedev delivering Putin’s message to Xi in Beijing, it’s not hard to see why some people think we’re preparing for something big.

If Kinzinger actually believes what he says, he’s dangerously misguided. If he doesn’t but says it anyway, he dangerously misguides many Americans.

If NATO attacks Russia, its capitals would be destroyed. And it wouldn’t take 3 days.

NATO Could Take Out Russia in 3 Days: Kinzinger (NW)

Representative Adam Kinzinger said on Monday that the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) could take out Russia in only three days. Russian President Vladimir Putin has long taken issue with NATO—a coalition of Western governments including much of Europe and the United States—raising concerns about the West’s expanding sphere of influence in the months leading up to the Ukraine war. Specifically, the Russian leader opposed the possibility of Ukraine joining the organization. Experts have raised concern the Russia-Ukraine war could escalate into a larger conflict with NATO in the nearly 10 months since Putin launched his “special military operation” on the Eastern European country. Should Putin attack a NATO member state, that country can invoke Article 5 of the NATO charter, which states that “an attack against one ally is considered an attack against all allies,” essentially meaning a military response from all members could be initiated.

Kinzinger, an Illinois Republican, weighed in on what he believes a NATO-Russia conflict would be like, responding to a tweet questioning why NATO hasn’t defeated Russia yet. “I’m hoping this is a joke. NATO vs Russia would be like a real three day operation,” the GOP lawmaker wrote. Kinzinger has been vocal supporter of Ukraine throughout the conflict. In April, he called out members of his own party for focusing on attacking Disney despite the “genocide going on in Ukraine.””There is a genocide going on in Ukraine and the outrage is over what’s happening at Walt Disney,” Kinzinger said at the time, referring to the battle between Disney and Florida Republicans over the state’s anti-LGBTQ law. “You guys deserve way better.”

While many NATO member states have provided Ukraine with military and humanitarian aid throughout the conflict, they have not become directly involved. The international community largely believes sending their troops into Ukraine would likely lead to an escalation of the war. However, since Ukraine is not a NATO member, Russia’s invasion would not draw a NATO military response.In November, concerns about NATO’s involvement grew after a missile struck a village in Poland—which is part of the coalition—killing two individuals. Reports at first emerged that the missile was produced by Russia, but authorities ultimately ruled that it was accidentally fired by Ukraine in an effort to knock out Russian missile strikes on civilian infrastructure.

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NATO is running out of weapons, as Russia is adding them.

“Doing more would have “the prospect of breaking up NATO, breaking up Europe, and the rest of the world..”

Biden Explains Why Zelensky Can’t Get Everything He Wants (RT)

Giving Kiev all the weapons it wants might break NATO, US President Joe Biden said in a joint appearance with his Ukrainian counterpart Vladimir Zelensky in Washington on Wednesday. Biden added he was not worried the delivery of Patriot missiles to Ukraine might escalate tensions with Russia – as Moscow has warned – because they’re “defensive” weapons. Biden and Zelensky answered the questions of four hand-picked reporters after their meeting at the White House. The last one came from a Ukrainian journalist who asked why the West simply doesn’t give Ukraine “all capabilities it needs to liberate all territories.” “His answer is yes,” the US president deadpanned, pointing to Zelensky, who replied “I agree,” to laughter from the gathered press.


Biden then pointed out that the US “dedicated an enormous amount of security assistance to Ukraine” even before hostilities escalated in February – though in his prepared remarks he called the Russian military operation “unprovoked and unjustified.” “We’ve given Ukraine what they needed when they needed to defend themselves,” the US leader insisted, listing hundreds of tanks, armored vehicles, artillery, and ammunition that Washington and NATO have handed over to Kiev. Doing more would have “the prospect of breaking up NATO, breaking up Europe, and the rest of the world,” Biden said, noting that he’s spent “hundreds” of hours persuading US partners around the globe to help Ukraine, but “they are not looking for a Third World War” by fighting Russia directly. “But I’ve said too much.”

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“Moscow is well aware of the role that NATO is playing in the Ukraine conflict..”

“Russia is facing the “military potential and capabilities of almost all major NATO countries” in Ukraine..”

Putin Explains What Russia Faces In Ukraine (RT)

Moscow is confronted by the military capabilities of “almost all major NATO countries,” the Russian president has said Moscow is well aware of the role that NATO is playing in the Ukraine conflict, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday. He urged senior defense officials to carefully analyze the capabilities provided to Kiev by the US-led military bloc. Speaking at an extended meeting of the Board of the Russian Ministry of Defense, Putin said that Russia is facing the “military potential and capabilities of almost all major NATO countries” in Ukraine, adding that this will not stop Moscow from achieving its objectives. He went on to say that “all information about NATO forces [and] the means which are actively being used against us during the special military operation, are well known,” and that all of this should be “carefully analyzed and used” in order to increase the combat capabilities of Russia’s armed forces and security agencies.


He also said that the Russian forces have acquired a great deal of combat experience during the conflict. He called on senior defense officials to “analyze and systemize it in a timely manner” in order to share what has been learned with military personnel. Earlier this month, Putin blasted the West’s policies of shipping weapons to Ukraine and accused the West of fueling “genocide and terror in the Donbass,” saying it is turning Ukraine into “a colony” and “is cynically using the Ukrainian people as cannon fodder, a battering ram against Russia.” NATO has claimed that while it supports Ukraine militarily, it is not a party to the conflict. In early December, however, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov accused Washington and NATO of direct involvement in the conflict.

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“..assure guaranteed penetration of any anti-ballistic missile (ABM) system, both now and in the future..”

Russia Begins Deployment Of New State-of-Art Sarmat ICBM (RT)

Russia’s first new silo-based Sarmat intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM) will be deployed into service next year, Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said at a meeting of Russia’s senior defense officials with President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday. “Successful launches of the new heavy Sarmat missile system during state-run tests made it possible to begin work on its deployment,” Shoigu said. In total, some 22 new strategic nuclear missile launchers, including the silo-based Sarmat, as well as the Avangard and Yars systems, are set to be deployed to the country’s Strategic Missile Forces (SMF) next year, the minister revealed. Putin said that efforts would continue to improve the country’s SMF, adding that “the share of modern types of weapons in [Russia’s] strategic nuclear forces has exceeded 91% this year.”


“We will continue to maintain and improve the combat-readiness of our nuclear triad. This is the main guarantee for preserving our sovereignty and territorial integrity, strategic parity, and the general balance of power in the world,” he stated. The liquid-fueled heavy ICBM was first successfully test-launched back in April. The new system is ultimately set to replace the aging silo-based R-36M2 Voevoda missiles, the backbone of Russia’s strategic nuclear deterrence. Speaking with Krasnaya Zvezda (Red Star), the official newspaper of the Russian military, the head of Russia’s SMF, General Sergey Karakaev, said the new missile boasts vastly larger capabilities than its predecessor.“The missile system Sarmat has a wide range of capabilities for deploying various types of combat payloads and is based on principles that assure guaranteed penetration of any anti-ballistic missile (ABM) system, both now and in the future,” Karakaev told the newspaper last week.

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“Weapon supplies (by the U.S.) continue, the assortment of supplied weapons is expanding. All this, of course, leads to an aggravation of the conflict and, in fact, does not bode well for Ukraine..”

Kremlin Reacts To Patriot Missiles For Ukraine (ZH)

In its first reaction to widespread reports that the White House is moving forward with plans to send Patriot anti-air missile defense systems to Ukraine, the Kremlin said the move will only serve to aggravate the conflict and warned against it, while Putin in new remarks teased more advanced Russian weapons to be deployed, including hypersonic missiles. “Weapon supplies (by the U.S.) continue, the assortment of supplied weapons is expanding. All this, of course, leads to an aggravation of the conflict and, in fact, does not bode well for Ukraine,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said. A formal White House announcement confirming that Ukraine will get Patriots is expected Wednesday while Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky is meeting with President Biden to discuss the war, and ahead of Zelensky’s expected 7:30pm EST address to Congress.

Ukraine sees the more advanced anti-air defenses as vital if it hopes to survive the now constant barrage of strikes targeting its national energy infrastructure, which has left millions without power amid freezing temperatures. At one point early this week, some 80% of the Kyiv region was without power, as rolling emergency blackouts continue nation-wide. The Patriot missiles could be a game-changer given they have a maximum range of some 100 miles and are capable of downing ballistic missiles. Zelensky has long demanded that the US and NATO help “close the skies” over Ukraine. Putin for his part in Wednesday statements vowed to see the military operation through until all goals are achieved in Ukraine, also pledging to continue giving the military anything it needs.

Just as headlines of the White House approving Patriots for Ukraine spread internationally, he indicated readiness to deploy the hypersonic Sarmat missile to Ukraine: “He also said Russia needed to take special note of the importance of drones in the 10-month conflict and said Russia’s hypersonic Sarmat missile – dubbed “Satan II” would be ready for deployment in the near future.” For Kiev, Putin’s new threats will only underscore the need to keep the anti-air defenses and longer range missiles flowing from the West. As a Wednesday Reuters headlines reads, Mr. Zelensky is coming to Washington seeking “weapons, weapons, and more weapons.” Meanwhile, given Zelensky’s dramatic D.C. visit is happening during the holidays, mainstream journalists and pundits are unironically encouraging more “Christmas presents” for the Ukrainians…

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Escalate.

Moscow Comments On NATO Presence In Ukraine (RT)

Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu pointed to the presence of NATO staff officers and other specialists on the front lines in the ongoing conflict in Ukraine, on top of almost $100 billion worth of pledged weapons and supplies from the military bloc countries.“Russia’s armed forces are presently facing allied forces of the West,” Shoigu said on Wednesday at a meeting of the top military commanders in Moscow. “The US and its allies supply the Kiev regime with weapons, train its soldiers, provide intelligence, dispatch advisers and mercenaries, and wage an information and sanctions war against us.” Shoigu said NATO countries have so far expended more than $97 billion on weapons deliveries, in order to make up for what he described as “considerable losses” inflicted on the Ukrainian military by Russian forces.

NATO “staff officers, artillery personnel and other specialists are present in the zone of combat operations,” the defense minister added. More than 500 satellites are working to provide intelligence to the Ukrainian military, of which only 70 are purely military and the rest are dual-purpose, according to Shoigu. Multiple Western officials, from US President Joe Biden and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on down, have said that they are backing Ukraine in order to weaken Russia and that Moscow must not be allowed to win – while insisting they are not a party to the conflict. The US military alone has committed $20 billion in “security assistance” to Kiev since February.

While the initial weapons shipments included small arms and portable anti-tank and anti-aircraft missiles, NATO countries have since sent Ukraine tanks, fighter jets, drones, rocket and tube artillery, as well as more complex air defenses. Russia has repeatedly warned the US and its allies that such shipments could lead to a direct confrontation between Moscow and NATO, and accused the West of prolonging the conflict and causing needless deaths in Ukraine.

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Regurgitating old folk tales.

No Evidence Kremlin Is Behind Nord Stream Blasts – WaPo (RT)

Several unnamed European officials have privately acknowledged doubts over whether Russia is to blame for the destruction of the Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines, according to the Washington Post. The two gas conduits crossing the Baltic Sea were ruptured by several powerful explosions in late September. In a piece published Wednesday, the paper quoted an anonymous European official as saying, “there is no evidence at this point that Russia was behind the sabotage.” The article said that assessment was shared by 23 diplomatic and intelligence personnel from nine European nations, whom the Post interviewed in recent weeks. Several of the sources expressed the view that Russia was unlikely to be behind the explosions.

Others, however, merely argued that it would likely be impossible to assign responsibility to any one country beyond a reasonable doubt, the paper reported. Some officials cited in the article referred to alleged interceptions of communications between Russian officials and military forces, obtained by US intelligence. According to them, Washington has so far not seen anything indicating Russia’s involvement. Following the attacks on the two pipelines, only one of which was operational, Western governments were quick to point the finger at Moscow. Just four days after the incident, US Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm told the BBC that it “seem[ed]” Russia was to blame.German Economy Minister Robert Habeck, in turn, said in early October that “Russia saying ‘It wasn’t us’ is like saying ‘I’m not the thief.’”

The Ukrainian government described the explosions as a “terrorist attack planned by Russia.” On Wednesday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov opined that “no one in the European Union is apparently going to objectively investigate” the blasts.In mid-October, the ministry released a statement saying that German, Swedish and Danish authorities had refused to let Moscow participate in their probes despite the latter’s requests. The statement said the Kremlin would view the refusals as proof that the countries “have something to hide or [that] they are covering up the perpetrators of these terrorist attacks.” It also warned that Moscow would “of course, not recognize any ‘pseudo-results’ of such an investigation, unless Russian experts take part in it.”

At the time of the incident, neither Nord Stream 1, nor Nord Stream 2 were pumping Russian gas to Europe. Exports via the older conduit had been halted by Moscow in early September, citing Western sanctions as the reason. Nord Stream 2, though technically ready, had failed to receive permission from German authorities and had never been in operation. While gas supplies from Russia to Europe have dwindled significantly since February 24, several pipelines crossing Belarus, Ukraine and the Black Sea remain in operation.

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Semantics?

The Harder They Come … (Jotwani)

Alastair Crooke is a sage whose thoughtful writings pack vast breadth and depth of understanding of history and geopolitics. His analysis is free of the slightest hint of bias or narrow partisanship – a fact which seems almost incredible given that he worked for the UK Government for a couple of decades. In fact, the sage and his writings testify to a constant and priceless element of western tradition – namely, independent thought. It was therefore as a surprising and rare slip of the pen, that one read the following paragraph in an article written very recently by him: “But … can the West, which has been so deep in denial about both the incredible economic and military transformation that has occurred in Russia since 1998, and in such vehement denial too, of the capacities of the Russian military, simply slide effortlessly into another narrative? Yes, easily. The neocons never look back; they never apologise. They move to the next project …”

Reference in the first sentence is made to “the West”. One has to assume that the reference is to the ruling dispensation – or shall we say regime? – in certain countries, because clearly not every human being in these countries has been in denial about events in Russia since 1998. Later in the paragraph, however, the phrase used in place of “the West” – rather unconsciously, one must assume – is “the neocons”. Is that substitution not hugely surprising? The two phrases do not – cannot! – represent the same slice of human life! Equation of the two was surely unintentional. William Shakespeare, James Clerk Maxwell, Mark Twain, William James – these are just a few illustrious references from the English speaking regions of “the West”. These and many others – including of course Alastair Crooke himself – have not the remotest connection to “the neocons” view of life.

Possibly, “the neocons” are the newest version of the crazies who have always attempted to lord it over “the West” – as indeed over much of the world. Such people are always at the game of deceptively and cruelly acquiring raw power; but surely such wannabe power grabbers do not equate to “the West”. Indeed, that the two were thus equated – even if unintentionally – also proves that “the West” is no longer a meaningful phrase, if indeed it ever was. Of course “the East” and “the South” have already figured that out – as we sense clearly in the winds of change blowing through global political alignments.

Crooke also writes that the neocons do not look back or apologize. No power hungry crazies ever do that. Never. It is as if they drive a vehicle with faulty brakes, no reverse gear and a cracked and dirty windshield. Their judgement clouded by limitless greed for power, they lack understanding of the progress which in fact happens not only in Russia, but all over the world. Their every “next project” is therefore doomed to end worse than the one before. A crash is therefore inevitable, even though it will be denied by ideologues during – and even after – it occurs. What the rest of mankind see clearly as a crash will be written up as a victory, or a major engineered paradigm shift, or some such nonsense.

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“..Berlin handed its energy companies €15 billion to go on a gas shopping spree – resulting in an unprecedented spike in gas prices..”

1st Year Of New German Government: ‘Double-Whammy’ Of Double Standards (Az.)

Few large countries laud their commitment to liberal values like democracy, human rights and the rule of law as much as the world’s fourth-largest economy does, but the first year of the new German government has been a “double-whammy” of double standards, Report informs via Euractiv. “We want to increase the strategic sovereignty of the European Union by making our foreign, security, development and trade policies value-based and based on common European interests,” reads the founding treaty of the incoming government from November 2021. Ukraine quickly felt what the new value-based German government policy amounted to. As more than 100,000 Russian soldiers amassed at their borders and an invasion was imminent, Berlin saw it fit to equip Ukraine with 5,000 helmets while blocking the Baltic states from sending Soviet-era artillery.


Lest we forget, as Russian soldiers were camped out miles from the border, leading German politicians continued to fiercely defend Nord Stream 2 pipeline from Russia throughout January 2022 – a pipeline designed to bypass Ukraine, deprive the country of gas transit income and further increase Germany’s dependence on the Kremlin. One “should not drag Nord Stream 2 into this conflict”, explained Defence Minister Christine Lambrecht at the time. Aside from Ukraine, when Russia began turning off the gas tap, Berlin handed its energy companies €15 billion to go on a gas shopping spree – resulting in an unprecedented spike in gas prices. In August, Germany’s panicked buying to fill its gas stores sent the price to a level twenty times higher than in January 2021.

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Which part of that would “the agencies” have furnished?

How Musk Averted A $3 Billion Twitter Crash (ZH)

Elon Musk on Tuesday night said that Twitter was on course for $3 billion of negative cashflow before he stepped in and nuked more than half the company. Twitter itself, meanwhile, is operating better than ever – with a significant reduction in bots, and increases in speed. “That is why I spent the last five weeks cutting costs like crazy,” Musk said during a Twitter Spaces event. “This company is like, basically, you are in a plane that is headed toward the ground at high speed with the engines on fire and the controls don’t work.” Since Musk acquired Twitter in October for $44 billion – financing the deal in part with nearly $13 billion of debt and interest payments of $1.5 billion per year, he has set out on a mission to cut costs and revamp the social media giant, which he said was losing $4 million per day as of early November, and was at risk of going bankrupt.

Roughly 5,000 of the company’s 7,500 employees have been fired, with the remaining workers agreeing to a “hardcore” work ethic, Bloomberg reports. Over the weekend Musk conducted a straw poll on Twitter asking people if they wanted him to resign as the company’s top executive. About 58% of respondents said yes and Musk has since confirmed he’d step down once an appropriate replacement was found, for a job he’s said anyone would be “foolish” to take. “In the Twitter Spaces event, Musk painted a dire picture of the company’s finances but suggested that he has managed to avert a total meltdown. -Bloomberg”.

In 2021, Twitter’s costs totaled nearly $5.6 billion, while Musk said the company was on track to spend around $5 billion next year. When combined with the acquisition-tied debt repayments, Twitter would be looking at around $6.5 billion in 2023 expenses had costs not been slashed so drastically. According to Musk, Twitter is now on track to bring in around $3 billion in revenue in 2023 – roughly $2 billion less than the $5.1 billion reported at the end of 2021, while the company has $1 billion in cash on its balance sheet. “I now think that Twitter will, in fact, be okay next year,” Musk continued during the Spaces event, adding that he thinks the company will “roughly” break-even, but that “this will be difficult.”

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“..officials from no fewer than 12 government agencies met with representatives of Twitter, Facebook, and other Big Tech firms weekly..”

FBI Accuses ‘Conspiracy Theorists’ Of Weaponizing Twitter Files (RT)

Correspondence between the FBI and Twitter staff revealing how the agency pressured the platform to suppress certain narratives is not evidence of wrongdoing, the Bureau said in a statement on Wednesday, blaming “conspiracy theorists” for presenting their activities in a nefarious light. The messages turned over to journalists by Twitter CEO Elon Musk over the last two weeks “show nothing more than examples of our tradition, longstanding and ongoing federal government and private sector engagements,” the FBI statement claims. “It is unfortunate that conspiracy theorists and others are feeding the American public misinformation with the sole purpose of attempting to discredit the agency,” the statement concludes, reminding its critics that “the men and women of the FBI work every day to protect the American public.”

Messages appearing to show FBI agents pressuring Twitter staff to censor legitimate stories like the Hunter Biden ‘laptop from hell’ as foreign influence operations were merely innocuous examples of the FBI “provid[ing] critical information to the private sector in an effort to allow them to protect themselves and their customers,” the Bureau argued. Internal communications among platform employees suggest otherwise.In messages published as part of the Twitter Files, staff repeatedly point out there is “no evidence” to substantiate FBI claims of foreign disinformation and express discomfort with the bureau’s meddling. Twitter’s former policy director observed a “sustained (if uncoordinated) effort by the IC [intelligence community]” to push Twitter to share more information against its own policies, while the FBI ultimately paid Twitter more than $3.5 million in taxpayer dollars to prioritize its censorship requests.

The White House has thus far refused to comment on the Twitter Files, referring reporters to the FBI, and the media establishment have largely ignored them. However, former Republican congressman Ron Paul argued they are proof the FBI colluded with Twitter to deprive Americans of their constitutional right to free speech. A lawsuit filed earlier this year by the attorneys general of Missouri and Louisiana alleges that the FBI was not alone, and that officials from no fewer than 12 government agencies met with representatives of Twitter, Facebook, and other Big Tech firms weekly to decide which narratives and users to censor, with topics ranging from alleged election interference to Covid-19.

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“As many as 60 current and former MEPs may have been involved in the scheme..”

Corruption Scandal Hurts EU ‘Credibility’ – European Council President (RT)

A corruption scandal that led to the arrest of former European Parliament VP Eva Kaili for allegedly taking bribes from Qatar is wrecking the bloc’s credibility at a time when it is already vulnerable, European Council President Charles Michel told Politico on Wednesday.The revelation that MEPs reportedly engaged in illicit lobbying on behalf of the Qatari government in exchange for millions of euros in cash and gifts is “dramatic and damaging for the credibility of the European Union,” Michel said, lamenting that the scandal was “making it even more difficult for us to focus on the economic and energy crises that impact the lives of European citizens right now.”

Michel suggested the bloc must act in order to prevent a repeat performance. “We first need to learn lessons from this and come up with a package of measures to avoid such things – to prevent corruption in the future,” he told Politico, complaining that the aura of impropriety would make his job more difficult.Kaili and her husband Francesco Giorgi were arrested earlier this month by Belgian law enforcement, along with former Italian MEP Antonio Panzeri, whom Giorgi identified as the leader of the bribery ring, and a fourth individual. All have been charged with “participation in a criminal organization, money laundering, and corruption.”

Belgian authorities seized more than €1.5 million in assets from properties linked to the four suspects. As many as 60 current and former MEPs may have been involved in the scheme, according to Italian media reports, with most hailing from the Socialists & Reformers parliamentary group.The European Parliament has temporarily halted all lobbying work related to Qatar, and recently voted to deny representatives from the Gulf state access to its premises while condemning the alleged “foreign interference” in its business. Doha has denied any wrongdoing and warned that the parliament’s “discriminatory” decision could disrupt the supply of energy to the continent, which has recently ramped up its consumption of Qatari natural gas to replace embargoed supply from Russia.

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“Maricopa County admits they do NOT count ballots at vote centers (which is required by State Law).”

Kari Lake Election Challenge Trial Reveals Major Confession (WJ)

Maricopa County Recorder Stephen Richer testified Wednesday during GOP gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake’s election challenge trial that the individual polling locations did not tally the total number of votes cast in the midterm elections, a seeming violation of state law. Lake attorney Bryan Blehm asked Richer whether the county knew on Election Day the total number of ballots submitted by voters. One of the allegations in Lake’s lawsuit is that the total number of ballots the county reported in the election increased by nearly 25,000 from Nov. 9, the day after the contest, to Nov. 11. That number is significant because it exceeds Katie Hobbs’ approximately 17,000-vote margin of victory over Lake. “On Election Day it would’ve been easy for you to figure out how many ballots you received,” Blehm said to Richer.

He responded, “Well, we had to get them all in and it was quite a process throughout the night.” Blehm interjected, “You can look at the forms and add the numbers. Correct?” “They’re not counted at the individual loading locations,” Richer said. “They are counted when they get back to MCTEC and then they are recounted at Runbeck.” MCTEC is the Maricopa County Tabulation and Election Center in downtown Phoenix and Runbeck is the company the county uses to process and scan ballots. “Does anybody know when those ballots leave the voting centers how many are in the bins?” Blehm asked. “When the early ballots leave the voting centers, no, they are not counted at the voting centers,” Richer answered.

Blehm followed up, “Nobody knows how many [ballots] are in the bins when they arrive at MCTEC. Correct?” “Correct,” Richer said. The Arizona Republican Party tweeted in response, “Maricopa County admits they do NOT count ballots at vote centers (which is required by State Law).” The 2019 Arizona elections procedures manual, which cites state law, requires an audit at each voting location of the total number of ballots cast. The results must be recorded in an official ballot report.The audit even requires accounting for the total amount of ballot stock paper on-site. The ballots cast must then be placed in sealed boxes.

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Next up: the parents.

Caroline Ellison Throws SBF Under The Bus (ZH)

Two weeks ago, when amid reports that 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 in New York just after retaining Clinton superlawyer, Jamie Gorelick of Wilmer Hale, which as readers may recall was the former No. 2 ranking member in the Clinton Justice Department, and in a recent interview, she referred to current AG Merrick Garland as her “wingman”, we asked if Caroline had rolled on Sam Bankman-Fried, who was also her former lover. Fast forward to today when we just got confirmation that Caroline Ellison has fucked Bankman-Fried one final time by indeed rolling on him, and “turning states” in the criminal prosecution of the corpulent “Hairy Plotter”, who commingled and stole the client money in his FTX exchange to fund a series of terrible crypto bets at his personal hedge fund Alameda, fund tens of millions in donations to democrats and buy up prestigious real estate for himself and his “altruistic” progressive lawyer parents.

According to a Manhattan Federal prosecutor, two of FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried’s closest associates have pleaded guilty to fraud and agreed to co-operate with US authorities investigating the collapse of the bankrupt cryptocurrency exchange. In other words, they took a plea deal to avoid even more prison time in exchange for serving SBF on a silver platter to the Feds. Damian Williams, the US attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced the guilty pleas and criminal charges against Caroline Ellison and Zixiao “Gary” Wang, the low profile co-founder of FTX, in a short video statement. His office had brought eight charges against Bankman-Fried last week.

Ellison pleaded guilty to seven counts, including wire and securities fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering, which carry a maximum sentence of 110 years in prison, while Wang pleaded guilty to four counts of fraud, with a maximum 50-year sentence. The documents said prosecutors would not oppose bail requests from both defendants under certain conditions, including posting a bond and handing in their travel documents, as they awaited formal sentencing. Concurrently, the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission also filed civil lawsuits against the 28-year-old Ellison and 29-year-old Wang, accusing them of fraud.

“As part of their deception, we allege that Caroline Ellison and Sam Bankman-Fried schemed to manipulate the price of FTT, an exchange crypto security token that was integral to FTX, to prop up the value of their house of cards,” said SEC chair Gary Gensler. Furthermore, as CEO of the FTX trading affiliate, Ellison “used FTX’s customer assets to pay Alameda’s debts” and diverted billions of dollars of depositors’ money to the company to fill a hole caused by a crypto market crash in May, the SEC’s complaint alleges.

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”By the end of the week more than 20 towns and cities including London, Nottingham, Wolverhampton, Leeds and Luton had riots of their own. The Specials were providing the soundtrack.”

Ghost Town: ‘The Song Margaret Thatcher Wishes Was Never Released’ (BBC)

July 1981. Riots have broken out around Britain. Charles and Diana are about to marry. And backstage at Top of The Pops, The Specials are falling apart. In a few minutes they will perform their latest hit Ghost Town, which over the years, would come to be regarded as one of the greatest British singles of all time. It was a track which bottled the discord, racial tensions and societal breakdown happening in the UK that summer. There had already been riots in Brixton that April, over the increased use of a new stop-and-search policy, the so-called sus law, which was named Operation Swamp. Police were said to have mounted a campaign of harassment against the black community in south London.

Terry Hall is telling the band that he too has had enough. Worn down by touring, band infighting and struggling to deal with success, he wants out. It is too difficult to be singing about disharmony, while surrounded by it, both inside and outside The Specials. “We knew it was going to end as we were recording it (Ghost Town),” Terry Hall told Front Row in 2019. “It was bizarre. It took about eight months to record. I don’t think there were more than two of us in the studio at any point. Those weren’t good signs really. It finished up with me in a living room in Tottenham singing Ghost Town. It was all over the place. But it was a great way to bow out.” He was 22.

“Talk about zeitgeist. That one song suddenly captured so much,” remembered Specials fan and Bend It Like Beckham director Gurinder Chada in the 2021 BBC Documentary 2 Tone: The Sound of Coventry. “If there is one song Margaret Thatcher wishes never got released, it’s probably Ghost Town,” she added.On 7 July 1981, Radio One announced that Ghost Town had replaced Michael Jackson’s One Day In Your Life at the top of the charts. That same day, newspaper front pages were full of reports about the first ever use of CS gas grenades by the police on mainland Britain, as they struggled to contain the Toxteth Riots. These were sparked by tensions between police and the local community in Liverpool. By the end of the week more than 20 towns and cities including London, Nottingham, Wolverhampton, Leeds and Luton had riots of their own. The Specials were providing the soundtrack.

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Xfiles 2016

 

 

 

 

Zel TV

 

 

Ants and cities

 

 

Eel catfish

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Dec 202022
 
 December 20, 2022  Posted by at 9:56 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,  80 Responses »


Saul Leiter 463 1956

 

Managing the Ukraine Denial Narrative (Crooke)
News From The NATOstan-Imposed Meat Grinder (Escobar)
Why Time Isn’t Ripe For Ukraine Talks (Bhadrakumar)
How To Avoid Another World War (Kissinger)
Ukraine Blasts ‘Appeaser’ Henry Kissinger For Urging Peace Negotiations (ZH)
Moscow: Delivery Of Greece’s S-300s To Ukraine Would Be ‘Very Provocative’ (K.)
How Lobbyists Captured The EU (Fazi)
A Christmas Parable (Kunstler)
Will Musk Step Down After Twitter Poll? (Turley)
TWITTER FILES: How The FBI Moved To Quash Hunter Laptop Story (ZH)
‘Twitter Files’ Make it Clear: We Must Abolish the FBI (Ron Paul)
FBI Agent Elvis Chan Gave Twitter Execs Top Secret Clearance (Senger)
Canada Health Director Who Lead Vaccine Rollout Dies Suddenly at 35 (GP)

 

 

 

 

#StopTheTreaty

 

 

Greatest athletic achievement

 

 

Gonzalo

 

 

 

 

“The ‘writing is on the wall’, in other words. Ukraine cannot win.”

Managing the Ukraine Denial Narrative (Crooke)

Look around: the tectonic plates of geo-politics and geo-finance are shifting – shifting radically away from an increasingly flailing West.The inflection has begun. It has been messaged by the Financial Times (FT) and The Economist – the two media that so faithfully transmit any ‘replacement narrative’ to the globalist sherpas (those who carry the baggage up the mountain, on behalf of the mounted nabobs). The Economist leads with interviews with Zelensky, General Zaluzhny and Ukraine’s military field commander, General Syrsky. All three are interviewed – interviewed in The Economist, no less. Such a thing does not occur by happenstance. It is messaging intended to convey the Ruling Class’ new narrative to the ‘golden billion’ (who will all read and absorb it).

On the surface, it is possible to read The Economist piece as a plea for more money and many more weapons. But the underlying messaging is clear: “Anyone who underestimates Russia is heading for defeat”. The Russian force mobilisation was a success; there is no problem with Russian morale; and Russia is preparing a huge winter offensive that will start soon. Russia has huge reserve forces (of up to 1.2 million men); whereas Ukraine now has 200,000 who are militarily trained for conflict. The ‘writing is on the wall’, in other words. Ukraine cannot win. It is appended with a huge shopping list of sought-after weapons. But the shopping list is ‘pie in the sky’; the West simply does not have them in inventory. Period.

The FT’s ‘Big Read’, by contrast, is a venting of deep western anger at those Russian ‘reformist’ siloviki technocrats who, instead of breaking with Putin over the SMO, instead shamefully enabled the Russian economy to survive western sanctions. The message uttered – through clenched teeth – is that Russia’s economy has successfully survived western sanctions. Leading US military strategist, Col. Douglas Macgregor, here expands on the messaging: Even the provision of seven or eight Patriot missiles is “no escalation”. It will have at best – ‘marginal impact’ on the Ukraine battlescape; it is mere window dressing. Scott Ritter, in discussion with Judge Neapolitano, believes that The Economist interviews reveal the West pushing aside Zelensky – as Zaluzhny administers his large dose of reality (that will be shocking to many sherpa loyalists). The Economist interview emphasis thus was unmistakably on General Zaluzhny, with Zelensky pointedly de-emphasised – which Ritter suggests indicates that Washington wishes to ‘switch leadership horses’. Another ‘message’?

Judge Nap/Scott Ritter

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“..Russia can conveniently defeat the whole of NATO as there is hardly anything “there”..

News From The NATOstan-Imposed Meat Grinder (Escobar)

The non-stop trashy parade of Western military analysts is now “assessing” that the first targets of an incoming, joint Russia-Belarus attack on the 404 black hole formerly known as Ukraine will be Lviv, Lutsk, Rivne, Zhytomyr, and why not throw Kiev in the mix straight out of a second axis. The Russian General Staff is attentively monitoring all the action and may even follow the advice of such “analysts”. And then there’s outright panic, as the Ministry of Defense announced that the Strategic Missile Forces have loaded two Yars ICBMs into their intended silos. Cue to widespread shrieks of horror of the “Russia Readies Nuclear Missile Capable Of Striking Deep Into US” variety. Some facts though never change. Number One is NATO as a figment of the collective West’s – extremely impaired – imagination. If push ever came to shove – as Straussian/neo-con armchair warriors hope and pray – Russia can conveniently defeat the whole of NATO as there is hardly anything “there”.

That, of course, would require a massive Russian mobilization. As it stands, Russia may look feeble in a few quarters as they activated at best 100,000 troops against possibly 1 million Ukrainian troops. It’s as if Moscow was not exactly seduced by the idea of “winning” – which may be the case, in a quite twisted way. Even now, Moscow has not mobilized enough troops to occupy Ukraine – which, in theory, would be imperative to completely “denazify” the Kiev racket. The operative concept though is “in theory”. Moscow in fact is busy demonstrating a completely new theory – irrespective of the fact that a few exalted souls have been peddling that Putin should be replaced by the FSB’s Alexander Bortnikov.

With its array of hypersonic missiles, Russia can knock out all NATO bridges, ports, airports as well as power stations, oil and natural gas storage, Rotterdam oil and natural gas installations, in a matter of a few hours. All energy production equipment across NATOstan would be destroyed. Europe would be shut off from natural resources. A dazed and confused Empire would be unable to move troops, any troops, to Europe. And still provocations run unabated. The recent attack by Tu-141 Ukrainian drones against Engels-2 airbase was blamed by Moscow on Kiev – which predictably denied all responsibility. Yet what really mattered was Moscow’s strategic messaging to US/NATO, with Putin flirting with the notion that sooner or later the response may be up a serious notch in case US/NATO weaponry supplied to Kiev is used to strike deep into sensitive Russian Federation territory.

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Drawn in too deep.

Why Time Isn’t Ripe For Ukraine Talks (Bhadrakumar)

A Russian-American “consensus” is forming that the Ukraine conflict is far from a climactic stage leading to peace talks. Russia’s stance is that any settlement will devolve upon Kiev recognising “realities” — namely, acceptance of Crimea, Donetsk, Luhansk, Zaporozhye and Kherson regions being integral parts of Russian Federation. But wouldn’t Russia know that no government in Kiev can afford to concede a demand that entails loss of over a quarter of the country’s territory? On the other hand, Kiev wants to vacate the Russian occupation and restore Ukraine’s 1991 borders and the Biden Administration is supportive. Wouldn’t they know that is a pipe dream?

Truly, since four of the erstwhile Ukrainian oblasts (excluding Crimea) are far from under Russia’s total control and the Kremlin intends to fully “liberate” them, the fighting continues in Donbass and further Russian moves to gain full control over Zaporozhye and Kherson regions will depend on its outcome. But the big question remains: How could any government in Kiev surrender vast tracts of Ukrainian territory after such sacrifices by the people? That may leave Russia with no choice but to seek total victory. The attitude of the Biden Administration is crucial. The clearest indication that the US is far from in a hurry to negotiate comes from none other than the White House National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan whose visit to Kiev last month (just before the US midterms) had triggered a flurry of speculations that Washington was pressuring President Zelensky to negotiate.

Now, Sullivan’s remarks at an appearance at the Carnegie last weekend made it clear that the US is in Ukraine for the long haul. He said: “We don’t know when this is going to end up. What we do know is that it is our job to continue to sustain our military support to Ukraine so that they are in their best possible position on the battlefield, that if and when diplomacy is ripe, they will be in the best possible position at the negotiating table. “That moment is not ripe now, and so, as a result, we’ve gone to Congress and asked for a substantial amount of further resources to be able to continue to ensure that Ukraine has the means to fight this war. We’re confident we will get bipartisan support for that…

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“Auto-nomous weapons already exist, capable of defining, assessing and targeting their own perceived threats and thus in a position to start their own war.”

How To Avoid Another World War (Kissinger)

As the world’s leaders strive to end the war in which two nuclear powers contest a conventionally armed country, they should also reflect on the impact on this conflict and on long-term strategy of incipient high–technology and artificial intelligence. Auto-nomous weapons already exist, capable of defining, assessing and targeting their own perceived threats and thus in a position to start their own war. Once the line into this realm is crossed and hi-tech becomes standard weaponry – and computers become the principal executors of strategy – the world will find itself in a condition for which as yet it has no established concept. How can leaders exercise control when computers prescribe strategic instructions on a scale and in a manner that inherently limits and threatens human input?


How can civilisation be preserved amid such a maelstrom of conflicting information, perceptions and destructive capabilities? No theory for this encroaching world yet exists, and consultative efforts on this subject have yet to evolve – perhaps because meaningful negotiations might disclose new discoveries, and that disclosure itself constitutes a risk for the future. Overcoming the disjunction between advanced technology and the concept of strategies for controlling it, or even understanding its full implications, is as important an issue today as climate change, and it requires leaders with a command of both technology and history.The quest for peace and order has two components that are sometimes treated as contradictory: the pursuit of elements of security and the requirement for acts of reconciliation. If we cannot achieve both, we will not be able to reach either. The road of diplomacy may appear complicated and frustrating. But progress to it requires both the vision and the courage to undertake the journey.

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“Previously he’s been on record as saying “It was not a wise American policy to attempt to include Ukraine into NATO.”

Ukraine Blasts ‘Appeaser’ Henry Kissinger For Urging Peace Negotiations (ZH)

It didn’t take long for the Ukrainian government to blast and dismiss former US Secretary of State Kissinger’s peace plan proposal as “appeasing the aggressor”. “Mr. Kissinger still has not understood anything… neither the nature of this war, nor its impact on the world order,” Ukrainian presidential aide Mykhailo Podolyak said in response to the 99-year old influential US statesman’s Saturday op-ed in The Spectator entitled How to Avoid Another World War. “The prescription that the ex-Secretary of State calls for, but is afraid to say out loud, is simple: appease the aggressor by sacrificing parts of Ukraine with guarantees of non-aggression against the other states of Eastern Europe,” Podolyak stated, expressing a firm rejection of what Kissinger outlined in his piece.

The Ukrainian official added that the proposal was simplistic, saying: “All supporters of simple solutions should remember the obvious: any agreement with the devil – a bad peace at the expense of Ukrainian territories – will be a victory for Putin and a recipe for success for autocrats around the world.” In his weekend op-ed, Kissinger had warned that continued attempts to render Russia “impotent” could result in an uncontrollable and unpredictable spiral. He laid out that along with the sought after “dissolution” of Russia would come a massive power vacuum out of which new threats to the whole world would emerge as bigger powers rush in. “The dissolution of Russia or destroying its ability for strategic policy could turn its territory encompassing 11 time zones into a contested vacuum,” Kissinger wrote.

“Its competing societies might decide to settle their disputes by violence. Other countries might seek to expand their claims by force. All these dangers would be compounded by the presence of thousands of nuclear weapons which make Russia one of the world’s two largest nuclear powers.” Among the more controversial aspects of Kissinger’s plan was his suggesting the possibility of referendums for contested territories now occupied by Russia and still being fought over “which have changed hands repeatedly over the centuries” [i.e.: particularly the Donbas] – according to the essay. Kissinger last May also angered Ukrainian officails for daring to propose that Ukraine be willing to recognize Crimea as under Russia, and in return Russian forces would fall back to their lines before the Feb. 24 invasion. Previously he’s been on record as saying “It was not a wise American policy to attempt to include Ukraine into NATO.”

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Erdogan plays this game a lot smarter.

Moscow: Delivery Of Greece’s S-300s To Ukraine Would Be ‘Very Provocative’ (K.)

The spokesperson of the Russian Foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova stated on Monday that a potential delivery of Greece’s S-300 PMU1 missile defense system to Ukraine would be considered a very provocative move.“We consider plans to supply the Kyiv regime with S-300s or other Russian/Soviet air defense systems that will be used against Russia very provocative,” stated Zakharova. “The Greek authorities recently underlined their readiness to supply Ukraine with the S-300 PMU1 missile defense system, on condition of receiving additionally American Patriot missile defense systems to replace them,” she added. “There is a complete indifference by Greece on the international limitations on arms trading,” she concluded, stating that the Russian armed forces will locate and destroy all military supplies sent to Ukraine.

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“Bribery and corruption are endemic to the Brussels system — and most of it is perfectly legal.”

How Lobbyists Captured The EU (Fazi)

Addressing a recent European Parliament debate on “human rights in the context of the World Cup”, vice-president Eva Kaili had an unexpected message: “Qatar is a frontrunner in labour rights.” So, perhaps we shouldn’t have been surprised when, last week, she was among six people arrested by Belgian police amid allegations of Qatari corruption and money laundering . Members of the EU establishment have been quick to spin the issue as a problem limited to a few bad apples. Several European Parliament officials told Politico the allegations were limited to a “few individuals” who had gone astray. Others, however, expect more names to be drawn into the widening dragnet. But whether or not the scandal extends to other people is beside the point.

By focusing on “Qatargate”, we risk losing sight of the fact that the scandal is a symptom of a much deeper and more widespread malaise, involving not just the European Parliament but all EU institutions. Bribery and corruption are endemic to the Brussels system — and most of it is perfectly legal. It is estimated that there are more than 30,000 lobbyists working in Brussels, making it the second capital of lobbying in the world after Washington, DC. Most are in the service of corporations and their lobby groups, with huge sums at their disposal: the combined lobbying budget of the 12,400 companies and organisations on the EU lobby register has grown steadily over the years — especially since the pandemic — and today amounts to €1.8 billion.

Topping the list are Big Tech, Big Pharma and Big Energy giants such as Apple, Google, Meta, Bayer and Shell, as well as industry associations such as the European Chemical Industry Council, the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA), and BusinessEurope — all of which declare annual lobbying budgets of €4-6 million. The true figure is likely to be significantly higher, given the long history of businesses under-reporting their spending. Big Pharma and Big Tech, in particular, both significantly boosted their lobbying firepower throughout the pandemic. EFPIA alone — which represents Pfizer, AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson — increased its spending by 20% in 2020. A conservative estimate of total annual EU lobby spending by Big Pharma is now close to €40 million per year, with nearly 300 lobbyists officially working in Brussels to push the industry’s interests (though the actual number is probably higher, since disclosure rules do not capture all the spending on law firms, academic partnerships and activities in individual countries).

It’s safe to say the investment was amply repaid: by the end of 2021, the EU had signed €71 billion worth of confidential contracts, securing up to 4.6 billion doses of vaccines (more than ten doses for each European citizen). EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen negotiated its biggest deal yet with Pfizer — for up to 1.8 billion doses, worth up to €35 billion if fully exercised — via a series of text messages with the company’s chief. The European Public Prosecutor’s Office has opened an investigation into the matter. Such extreme cases, however, mask the true extent of the structural problem that pervades every aspect of the Brussels system. It goes without saying that this army of well-funded lobbyists, which far outnumbers and outspends public interest groups, gives corporations a massive influence over the European decision-making and legislative process.

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“Up rose a social movement, Wokery, that had the earmarks of a histrionic religious mania, with Satanic overtones. Up rose the demons, the Antifa louts, the BLM arsonists, the drag queens.”

A Christmas Parable (Kunstler)

It started when the women of the professional and managerial class watched their avatar, Hillary Clinton, lose the 2016 election against a man who seemed the quintessence of everything they hated about Daddydom. Donald Trump, flawed to perfection, wrecked the chance of the amalgamated successful women of America to run the national household. Out came the pussy-hats, the Wiccans, and the celebrities threatening to “blow up the White House.” Out came a savage animus against men generally, and a campaign to feminize them in retaliation — and then punish them for objecting to it. Up rose a social movement, Wokery, that had the earmarks of a histrionic religious mania, with Satanic overtones. Up rose the demons, the Antifa louts, the BLM arsonists, the drag queens.

Thus unrolled a national psychodrama that continues to spool out as every system, every business, every institution in our country wobbles and flies apart now. The men embedded in the professional and managerial class tried in 2016 to chivalrously protect their womens’ avatar and her steadfast followers and, failing ignobly that grim November day, then turned to actually attack their adversary, Donald Trump, with the explicit intent to destroy him by all means necessary. In the years-long process, they devolved into criminality, and in so doing they entered a vicious cycle of lying about everything they did to escape the consequences of their ostensible exercise in gallantry. In effect, the people running things went from a war against a particular person to a war against reality and its twin sister, truth.

Now they are deeply invested in unreality and untruth to the point where they have forgotten how this whole thing started and all they can do is desperately patch the dike they had to construct against a deluge of information composed of truth and reality coming at them like a tsunami rolling across the sea. The harder they work at this futile task of defense, the more absurd they make themselves, leading to ridicule, humiliation, and, finally condemnation in whatever remains of the legal arena, where their deeds will finally be judged. The first stage of that outcome for them is pretending that none of it is happening. That’s why The New York Times and Washington Post ignore the news that the gallant knights of the FBI and several other tentacles of the Intel octopus mounted a ferocious, long-running psy-op through the new phenomenon of social media — that happened to rise in importance through this whole period of national discord. In effect, the intel agencies seized the transmitters (as Fidel Castro might put it) and used them very effectively to control their hallowed narratives.

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Did he hold the poll just to expose the bots?

Will Musk Step Down After Twitter Poll? (Turley)

Many of us have supported Elon Musk in his fight to restore free speech protections to Twitter despite concerns over decisions like the use of polls to determine if individuals should be allowed back on the social media site. He has now subjected himself to the same poll judgment in asking if he should step down as CEO. After more than 17.5 million users voted, 57 percent said yes. Unless Musk was looking for an exit, it was a mistake. He handed his critics an easy opportunity to remove him. For the left, Musk has been a nightmare because he cannot be bullied like most corporate executives. He is an eccentric billionaire who has refused to yield despite a full mobilization of the political, media, and business establishment. That could now change.

While many on the left spent weeks dismissing Twitter’s polls as unscientific, they are now demanding that Musk follow through and step down. Some 42.5% of users wanted him to stay. On Twitter Sunday, Musk seemed to say that he would follow the results but expressed pessimism about the prospects for a new CEO. He said that the person “must like pain a lot” to run a company that “has been in the fast lane to bankruptcy.” He further noted that “no one wants the job who can actually keep Twitter alive. There is no successor.” That is precisely why the left wants Musk out. As shown in companies like Disney, the left can muscle executives to take actions even against the interests of the company or shareholders. The left has strived to make such campaigns personal for executives, who often yield rather than risk being individually tagged and targeted.

That is why it was essential to remove Musk. The political and media establishments generally are unstoppable forces — but they met their first immovable object in Musk. That immovable object has now taken a step to remove himself from the path of the establishment. One can hardly blame him, but, as Democratic members warned Facebook not to even consider following the path of Twitter, the prospect of Musk’s departure will strengthen the efforts to maintain censorship over social media. It is hard to ask anyone to continue to stand against this alliance of political, media, and business forces. Musk has been made a persona non grata for seeking to reduce censorship on the site. He has put billions on the line for the free speech of others. One can certainly understand why he would want this cup to pass from his lips. However, if he stays the course, his work at Twitter could prove to be his greatest legacy in resisting the trend toward censorship and speech controls in social media.

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Do we understand how crazy this is?

TWITTER FILES: How The FBI Moved To Quash Hunter Laptop Story (ZH)

In the latest episode of ‘THE TWITTER FILES,’ journalist Michael Shellenberger reveals “How the FBI & intelligence community discredited factual information about Hunter Biden’s foreign business dealings both after and *before* The New York Post revealed the contents of his laptop on October 14, 2020.” The story begins in December 2019 when a Delaware computer store owner named John Paul (J.P.) Mac Isaac contacts the FBI about a laptop that Hunter Biden had left with him On Dec 9, 2019, the FBI issues a subpoena for, and takes, Hunter Biden’s laptop. By Aug 2020, Mac Isaac still had not heard back from the FBI, even though he had discovered evidence of criminal activity. And so he emails Rudy Giuliani, who was under FBI surveillance at the time. In early Oct, Giuliani gives it to @nypost.

Shortly before 7 pm ET on October 13, Hunter Biden’s lawyer, George Mesires, emails JP Mac Isaac. Hunter and Mesires had just learned from the New York Post that its story about the laptop would be published the next day. 7. At 9:22 pm ET (6:22 PT), FBI Special Agent Elvis Chan sends 10 documents to Twitter’s then-Head of Site Integrity, Yoel Roth, through Teleporter, a one-way communications channel from the FBI to Twitter. 8. The next day, October 14, 2020, The New York Post runs its explosive story revealing the business dealings of President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter. Every single fact in it was accurate. 9. And yet, within hours, Twitter and other social media companies censor the NY Post article, preventing it from spreading and, more importantly, undermining its credibility in the minds of many Americans. Why is that? What, exactly, happened?

10. On Dec 2, @mtaibbi described the debate inside Twitter over its decision to censor a wholly accurate article. Since then, we have discovered new info that points to an organized effort by the intel community to influence Twitter & other platforms

Berman

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“This should be a massive scandal and likely it would have been had it occurred under a Trump Administration.”

‘Twitter Files’ Make it Clear: We Must Abolish the FBI (Ron Paul)

As we learn more and more from the “Twitter Files,” it is becoming all too obvious that Federal agencies such as the FBI viewed the First Amendment of our Constitution as an annoyance and an impediment. In Friday’s release from the pre-Musk era, journalist Matt Taibbi makes an astute observation: Twitter was essentially an FBI subsidiary.The FBI, we now know, was obsessed with Twitter. We learned that agents sent Twitter Trust and Safety chief Yoel Roth some 150 emails between 2020 and 2022. Those emails regularly featured demands from US government officials for the “private” social media company to censor comments and ban commenters they did not like.

The Foreign Influence Task Force (FITF), a US government entity that included the FBI as well as other US intelligence agencies expressly forbidden from domestic activities, numbered 80 agents engaged regularly in telling Twitter which Tweets to censor and which accounts to ban. The Department of Homeland Security brought in outside government contractors and (government-funded) non-governmental organizations to separately pressure Twitter to suppress speech the US government did not like. US Federal government agencies literally handed Twitter lists of Americans it wanted to see silenced, and Twitter complied. Let that sink in.

This should be a massive scandal and likely it would have been had it occurred under a Trump Administration. Indeed, Congress would be gearing up for Impeachment 3.0 if Trump-allied officials had engaged in such egregious behavior. But since these US government employees were by-and-large acting to suppress pro-Trump sentiment, all we hear are crickets. What is interesting about these Twitter revelations is how obsessed the FBI and its government partners were with satire and humor. Even minor Twitter accounts with small numbers of followers were constantly flagged by the Feds for censorship and deletion. But knowledge of history helps us understand this obsession: in Soviet times the population was always engaged in joking about the ineptitude, corruption, and idiocy of the political class. Underground publications known as samizdat were rich with satire, humor, and ridicule.

Go home

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More insanity.

FBI Agent Elvis Chan Gave Twitter Execs Top Secret Clearance (Senger)

New internal documents from Twitter, revealed today as part of Elon Musk’s “Twitter Files” series, show FBI Agent Elvis Chan arranged for Top Secret security clearance—the highest level of US national security clearance—to be granted to Twitter executives for the purpose of facilitating the censorship of suspected misinformation in advance of the 2020 election. Elvis Chan has long been closely involved in working with social media companies to identify and censor suspected misinformation from sources both foreign and domestic, especially with regard to suspected election interference. This has included regularly sending lists of social media posts to social media companies for them to take down, as well as the suspension of the New York Post and others for what was subsequently borne out to be a true story about Hunter Biden’s laptop.

In his deposition last month, Chan described how the pressure that he and other FBI agents placed on social media companies to censor information about Hunter Biden’s laptop stemmed from a “thesis” that the incriminating content may have been uploaded onto the laptop as part of a Russian “hack-and-leak” operation. But the basis for this Russian hack-and-leak thesis is disputed, in no small part because the FBI took possession of the laptop in December 2019, nearly a year before the story was censored, and because there did not appear to be any new intelligence to suggest that Russia was interfering in the 2020 election. Elvis Chan’s regular emails and weekly meetings with social media executives raise new questions about the level of coordination taking place between the federal government and social media companies for the purpose of censoring suspected misinformation shared by ordinary citizens.

The level of this coordination is currently the subject of lawsuits including my own, Changizi v. Dept. of Health & Human Services, and Missouri v. Biden, in which a damning round of discovery previously revealed that more than 80 federal officials across a dozen agencies had been involved in the censorship of social media content. Upon hearing the news, one FBI agent expressed disgust at what he described as the “gross subservience” that’s been shown by social media companies to the FBI, noting that the “default position” is for private companies to be “totally adversarial” to inquiries by the FBI about their customers.

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Sad.

Canada Health Director Who Lead Vaccine Rollout Dies Suddenly at 35 (GP)

The Director of Parliamentary Affairs at Health Canada, who oversaw the country’s response to Covid-19 and the rollout of the vaccine, passed away unexpectedly at the age of 35. Adam Exton, a long-time Liberal Party organizer, died suddenly on Friday, December 9th, according to his family.“It is with great sadness that the family of Adam Exton announce his passing on December 9th, 2022 at the age of 35 in Ottawa, Ontario. Much loved son of Wendy Exton, brother of Bradley Exton (Ellen Wessel) and son of Allan Exton. He will also be deeply missed by his loving girlfriend, Reesha, as well as his many cousins, aunts, uncles and grandmother, Bette Readman,” his obituary reads. “As a young person, Adam became actively involved in politics and had a passion for public service and volunteering in the community. In 2012, Adam won the Ontario Young Liberal Volunteer of the Year Award.


He received a degree in political science from the University of Toronto. Adam spent many years working at various levels of government, eventually holding the position of Director of Parliamentary Affairs at Health Canada.” Adam Exton was a part of the group that orchestrated the response to Canada’s totalitarian mandates against its own citizens.His obituary stated, “During the challenging times of the pandemic, Adam was part of the leadership team that led Canada’s health response to COVID-19. He was a talented and respected campaign manager that was instrumental in helping to bring cabinet ministers and members to Queens Park and Ottawa. Adam always did and will continue to make his family extremely proud of who he was and his service to his community and country.”

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Smart dogs

 

 

Larry

 

 

It’s a wonderful life

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Dec 192022
 
 December 19, 2022  Posted by at 9:47 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  89 Responses »


Pablo Picasso Portrait de femme (Dora Maar) 1943

 

One Year Ago, Russia Gave The West A Last Chance (Lukyanov)
A Lexicon for Disaster (Scott Ritter)
EU Sued Over Anti-Russia Sanctions (RT)
Lawyer Claims Eva Kaili Followed EU Parliament Chief’s Orders In Qatar (Eur.)
Will the Fallout from “Qatargate” Splatter the European Commission? (NC)
Biden’s Latest JFK Document Dump Is A JOKE (OffG)
Pfizer’s COVID-19 Vaccine Linked to Blood Clotting: FDA (ET)
FDA Uncovers Yet Another Dangerous Side Effect of the Covid-19 ‘Vaccines’ (KB)
TWITTER FILES Supplemental (Taibbi)
Musk Asks Twitter If He Should Step Down (ZH)
Twitter Censorship Contributed to Destructive Pandemic Policies (ET)
Democratic Members Warn Facebook Not to “Backslide” on Censorship (Turley)
Democrats Like Adam Schiff Are Scrambling To Save Censorship (Devine)
Former FBI Agent Calls Assertion Oath Keepers are Anti-Government ‘Absurd’ (ET)
US Doublespeak Will Not Stop Gold’s Imminent Surge (Von Greyerz)

 

 

 

 

BRICS

 

 

 

 

Child vaccine

 

 

Red Balloon

 

 

 

 

 

 

“NATO and the Americans categorically refused to discuss the main political issue: a formal rejection of NATO expansion.”

One Year Ago, Russia Gave The West A Last Chance (Lukyanov)

It’s been a year since a Russian document outlining proposals (or demands, if you prefer) for long-term guarantees on European security was delivered to NATO and the US. This was the starting point of the major politico-military crisis that defines the global situation today. Was the Russian ultimatum (and that is how it was formulated) designed to be rejected, or did it envisage a path to negotiations? President Vladimir Putin probably reasoned along the following lines: after so many years of ignoring our wishes and convictions, let’s give it one last chance. Let’s put forward the maximum set of demands, everything that has been said before, but outline them in one place and in a concentrated form, and see what happens.

If they realize that this time that it’s extremely serious, and with that in mind, decide on a real discussion, we are ready. However, if they start to waste time again, then that’s it. Let’s cut to the chase. If the response from the West was not satisfactory, the military operation in Ukraine would be the next step. There was apparently no chance of avoiding it by then. After all, the logic behind the need for the offensive was outlined in Putin’s big article in the summer of 2021. That is, the security demands were made when the internal readiness for action was already in place. The scale of the consequences leads many to return to the question: Was what happened inevitable? The argument that “we had no choice,” often heard at the highest level in Moscow, is problematic because it effectively means that Russia’s previous policies were wrong. A policy which leads to no alternative solution, i.e. forcing one to act in a certain way and no other way, cannot be considered successful.

So an analysis of the long period since the early 2000s will at some point be an important lesson for the future. Was there an urgent need to make demands and initiate the military operation at that point in time? Based on what we know now (which is probably not everything), there was room for maneuver and an opportunity to prepare better. Strategically, a conflict over Ukraine was probably inevitable, but the specific circumstances and timetable could have been different. Is anyone in the West kicking themselves right now? An ultimatum can only be accepted by great powers, and even more so by superpowers, as a result of a military defeat. So there was, I think, no chance of the demands being accepted. I have to say that the consultations that took place in January 2022 showed that the US was ready for some concessions on specific issues of military security.

To a greater extent than they had indicated before the demands were made. However, this amounted to very little relative to the overall picture. Most importantly, NATO and the Americans categorically refused to discuss the main political issue: a formal rejection of NATO expansion. For them, this is unacceptable because the military bloc’s enlargement is the basis of the entire international security philosophy as it has been understood in the West since the end of the Cold War. But even beyond this, in the West there is a complete absence (or perhaps a disappearance) of reflection on the history behind current events.

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Arms treaties and diplomacy have been abandoned. They’re bad for business.

A Lexicon for Disaster (Scott Ritter)

With no common language, there can be no common vision, no common purpose. Russia continues to seek arms control agreements which serve to restrict the arsenals of the involved parties to prevent dangerous escalatory actions while imposing a modicum of predictable stability on relations. The U.S. seeks only unilateral advantage. Until this is changed, there can be no meaningful arms control interaction between the U.S. and Russia. Not only will the New START treaty expire in February 2026, but it is also unlikely the major verification component of the treaty — on site inspections — will be revived between now and then. Moreover, it is impossible to see how a new arms control agreement to replace the expired New START treaty could be negotiated, ratified, and implemented in the short time remaining to do so.


There is no trust between Russia and the U.S. when it comes to arms control. With no treaties, there is no verification of reality. Both the U.S. and Russian arsenals will become untethered from treaty-based constraint, leading to a new arms race for which there can be only one finishing line — total nuclear war. There is a long list of things that must happen if meaningful arms control is ever to resume its place in the diplomatic arsenals of either the U.S. or Russia. Before either side can resume talking to one another, however, they must first re-learn the common language of disarmament. Because the current semantics of arms control is little more than a lexicon for disaster.

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62 lawsuits. So far.

EU Sued Over Anti-Russia Sanctions (RT)

Dozens of Russians and Belarusians have filed lawsuits at the EU Court of Justice, to challenge their inclusion on the sanctions list, the German newspaper Bild am Sonntag reported on Saturday. The Luxembourg-based court has reportedly received claims from one company and 61 individuals from Russia and Belarus, placed on the EU blacklist over their alleged support for Moscow’s military operation in Ukraine. The business figures are seeking to challenge what they view as a violation of their rights, and the freeze of their assets by EU authorities. According to the media report, the plaintiffs in Luxembourg include Russian billionaire and former owner of the English football club Chelsea, Roman Abramovich, ESN Group owner Grigory Berezkin, and Gennady Timchenko, who owns Volga Group, a Russia-based company with interests in energy, transportation and construction.


Alfa Group co-founder Mikhail Fridman and Alisher Usmanov, the owner Russia’s largest iron ore producer, are also among those suing. The EU has adopted nine rounds of anti-Russia sanctions since February 24, when Moscow launched its military operation in Ukraine. Aside from business people, the penalties include measures against Russian journalists and companies. On Friday, the EU blacklisted 141 Russian individuals and 49 legal entities, including ministers, governors, judges, parliament members, singers and presenters, as well as five political parties. The latest measures also deprived four more Russian media outlets of their broadcasting licenses in the EU, introduced a number of export bans, and extended restrictions on three more banks. Export restrictions were extended to 168 additional Russian entities closely linked to the Russian military-industrial complex, bringing the total number of sanctioned companies to 410.

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Could be an interesting court case. Note Borrell’s involvement.

Lawyer Claims Eva Kaili Followed EU Parliament Chief’s Orders In Qatar (Eur.)

Qatar had no need to bribe socialist MEP Eva Kaili as the latter was implementing a wider EU plan and was getting orders from EU Parliament President Roberta Metsola, Kaili’s lawyer Michalis Dimitrakopoulos alleged on Tuesday. Metsola’s office told EURACTIV that the president gave instructions on how to represent the institution’s position and “nothing else”. Last Friday, Greek MEP Eva Kaili, her partner Francesco Giorgi, and ex-MEP Pier Antonio Panzeri, president of the NGO Fight Against Impunity, were arrested by the Belgian police on suspicion of corruption. On a political level, with an overwhelming majority, the EU House sacked her yesterday from the vice presidency.

In an almost unanimous vote, EU lawmakers removed Eva Kaili as vice president of the European Parliament on Tuesday (13 December), following the so-called Qatargate, one of the biggest corruption scandals in the EU’s history. On Thursday, Belgian courts will decide whether she will remain in jail until the adjudication of the case. In an interview with Greek MEGA TV channel, Dimitrakopoulos said Kaili has nothing to do with bribery from Qatar. “What the public opinion needs to know is that Qatar did not need to bribe Ms Kaili because she went to Qatar as a representative of the European Parliament, the speeches, the interviews she gave were after the agreement and order of the President Roberta Metsola,” Dimitrakopoulos said.

He added that documents prove this and explained that Kaili did not take any initiative or have an agenda. “Ms Metsola sent her to Qatar, what she was going to say had Ms Metsola’s approval […] Ms Metsola had also sent EU official Mr Roberto Bendini with her to watch all of Ms Kaili’s meetings”, he explained. “I am telling you the words of Ms Kaili, she was carrying out a plan that had started in 2019, High Representative Josep Borrell and Ylva Johansson [Commissioner for Home Affairs] had decided at the Commission level, to cooperate with Qatar, Kuwait and Oman,” the lawyer added.

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“..he resisted those calls and in 2020 was bumped up to the European Commission, as so often happens with scandal-tarnished domestic politicians in the EU…”

Will the Fallout from “Qatargate” Splatter the European Commission? (NC)

For the moment, it is far from clear just how far this burgeoning scandal will reach. One thing that is clear is that the reputational damage will be large and lasting. The European Union’s ability to lecture the misbehaving governments of Member States and third-party countries on how to govern will be further diminished. As Hungary’s Victor Orban said in a video uploaded to his Facebook page, “It is time that we drain the swamp here in Brussels.” And he is right. EU institutions need to get their house in order once and for all, and fast. And that is unlikely to happen. The EU ombudsman Emily O’Reilly said this week that Von der Leyen’s proposed plan for a new ethics body is likely to end up as “something with no teeth, something that will possibly sit there passively, wait for complaints to come in.”

What the body really needs, O’Reilly said, is investigatory and sanctions powers. But that might actually threaten to derail the gravy train Brussels has become. And the problem is not just illegal cash payments stuffed away in paper bags and briefcases; it is the vast lobbying apparatus that has built up in Brussels, which is now the second largest lobbying capital in the world after Washington. As in Washington, lobbying reaches into just about every aspect of governance. In its 2015 report, CEO reported that lobbyists representing businesses and trade associations made up 75% of all high-level Commission lobby meetings and more than 80% in certain areas such as financial regulation or the internal market. The inevitable result, as in Washington, is that policies are made almost exclusively in the service of vested corporate interests.

Sometimes corporate lobbies even draft the EU’s legislation. This is the business model of modern governance. Lastly, if Borrell is indeed caught up in this burgeoning scandal and, by some miracle, loses his job, it would be no great loss to the EU’s 450 million citizens. He is the least diplomatic of diplomats. Just about every time he speaks, whether on the wonders of European colonialism or the vast untamed jungle that lies beyond Europe’s borders, damage is inflicted on the EU’s relations with some other part of the world. Since long before the Ukraine conflict he has played a leading role in escalating tensions with Russia, the EU’s biggest neighbor and energy supplier. He is also no stranger to scandal, having been convicted, in 2018, of insider trading in Spain. That resulted in him being placed on the Spanish market regulator’s blacklist. The ensuing scandal triggered calls for his resignation as Spain’s then-Foreign Minister. But he resisted those calls and in 2020 was bumped up to the European Commission, as so often happens with scandal-tarnished domestic politicians in the EU.

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“..two days later and on a complete whim, he decided to sneak back into the police station carrying a gun and shoot a man he had never met for no reason at all..”

Biden’s Latest JFK Document Dump Is A JOKE (OffG)

Waiting for a government – any government – to release their “secret” files is a waste of your time, and reading anything they eventually publish is doubly so. If you didn’t learn that from the nothing-burger that was the 28 pages on 9/11, or the pathetic exercise in revisionism that made up the Afghanistan Papers…you should definitely have learned it today. Yes, Joe Biden’s administration has just released their promised “secret” JFK papers. Turns out that Oswald acted alone. I know, I was shocked too. Further, the release dials back on the (very slight) anti-Russia messaging of last year’s release. In December 2021, the previous batch of “secret” files revealed Oswald met with a KGB agent in the days running up to the assassination.

The latest batch reassures us that Oswald never worked for the KGB, and that the Russians thought he was “too crazy” to recruit. One gets the impression that has as much to do with managing propaganda positioning over the war in Ukraine as anything else. Either way, its a ridiculously transparent attempt to reinforce the “lone wolf” lie. “He was too crazy and unstable even for the Russians!” Laughable. Further, one particular “secret” memo claims… the Central Intelligence Agency has no indication that Ruby and Lee Harvey Oswald ever knew each other, were associated, or might have been connected in any manner”. Yes, before Jack Ruby killed Lee Harvey Oswald they were apparently “not connected in any manner”. He had never met Oswald before the assassination, and barely had any idea who he was when he shot him on November 24th.

This means the current “official story” is that Ruby randomly chose to attend the press conference where Oswald spoke on the evening of November 22nd, despite not being a member of the press. During this press conference, Ruby correctly pointed out Oswald had joined the “fair play for Cuba committee” (presumably an inspired guess, seeing as they did not know one another). Then, two days later and on a complete whim, he decided to sneak back into the police station carrying a gun and shoot a man he had never met for no reason at all, in the parking lot of a police station, while surrounded by police officers. That’s what these “secret files” tell us…the same ridiculous story as the very unsecret Warren Commission.

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While we have been talking about bloodclots fior at least two years, the FDA only just discovered them. But: “..still under investigation and require more robust study.”

This costs lives.

Pfizer’s COVID-19 Vaccine Linked to Blood Clotting: FDA (ET)

Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine has been linked to blood clotting in older individuals, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). FDA researchers, crunching data from a database of elderly persons in the United States, found that pulmonary embolism—blood clotting in the lungs—met the initial threshold for a statistical signal and continued meeting the criteria after a more in-depth evaluation. Three other outcomes of interest—a lack of oxygen to the heart, a blood platelet disorder called immune thrombocytopenia, and another type of clotting called intravascular coagulation—initially raised red flags, researchers said. More in-depth evaluations, such as comparisons with populations who received influenza vaccines, showed those three as no longer meeting the statistical threshold for a signal.


Researchers looked at data covering 17.4 million elderly Americans who received a total of 34.6 million vaccine doses between Dec. 10, 2020, and Jan. 16, 2022. The study was published by the journal Vaccine on Dec. 1. The FDA said it was not taking any action on the results because they do not prove the vaccines cause any of the four outcomes, and because the findings “are still under investigation and require more robust study.” Dr. Peter McCullough, chief medical adviser for the Truth for Health Foundation, told The Epoch Times via email that the new paper “corroborates the concerns of doctors that the large uptick in blood clots, progression of atherosclerotic heart disease, and blood disorders is independently associated with COVID-19 vaccination.”

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“The FDA said it was not taking any action based on the study because the findings do not prove the vaccines cause any of the four outcomes.”

FDA Uncovers Yet Another Dangerous Side Effect of the Covid-19 ‘Vaccines’ (KB)

A recent study drawing on over thirty million datapoints from the the US Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) data system shows a heightened risk of pulmonary embolism, as well as the known elevated risk for myocarditis. “We evaluated 14 outcomes of interest following COVID-19 vaccination using the US Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) data covering 30,712,101 elderly persons,” the international study in the journal Elsevier stated. “The CMS data from December 11, 2020 through Jan 15, 2022 included 17,411,342 COVID-19 vaccinees who received a total of 34,639,937 doses. We conducted weekly sequential testing and generated rate ratios (RR) of observed outcome rates compared to historical (or expected) rates prior to COVID-19 vaccination.”

The findings supply yet more evidence that the Covid mRNA shots should not be recommended without the standard risks of serious side effects. “Four outcomes met the threshold for a statistical signal following BNT162b2 vaccination including pulmonary embolism (PE; RR = 1.54), acute myocardial infarction (AMI; RR = 1.42), disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC; RR = 1.91), and immune thrombocytopenia (ITP; RR = 1.44),” the study found. The term RR [Risk Ratio] is an expression of the relative risk of the pharmaceutical product versus a placebo. An RR of 1.5 represents a 50% heightened risk for the given side effect.

The study couches the findings in the typical manner: Claiming that the benefits of the ‘vaccines’ outweigh the ‘risks.’ However, that would only be clearly the case if a patient did not have natural antibodies and was at increased due to risk factors such as age, obesity, or immunocompromisation. Seroprevalence data show that nearly every American in the United States has been exposed to SARS-CoV-2. The FDA said it was not taking any action based on the study because the findings do not prove the vaccines cause any of the four outcomes. The FDA claimed the findings “are still under investigation and require more robust study.”

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Musk has shaken the tree pretty hard. It’s now up to the rest of us.

TWITTER FILES Supplemental (Taibbi)

On Friday, I posted a series of exchanges between Twitter and the FBI. One that required a bit too much explaining was left out. But it’s an important document, because it clearly demonstrates that Twitter will not only take requests from the government, it will even act quickly to align its analyses with its “partners.” 2. In July of 2020, San Francisco FBI agent Elvis Chan tells Twitter executive Yoel Roth to expect written questions from the Foreign Influence Task Force (FITF), the inter-agency group that deals with cyber threats. 3.The questionnaire authors seem displeased with Twitter for implying, in a July 20th “DHS/ODNI/FBI/Industry briefing,” that “you indicated you had not observed much recent activity from official propaganda actors on your platform.”

4 .One would think that would be good news. The agencies seemed to feel otherwise. 5.Chan underscored this: “There was quite a bit of discussion within the USIC to get clarifications from your company,” he wrote, referring to the United States Intelligence Community. 6.The task force demanded to know how Twitter came to its unpopular conclusion. Oddly, it included a bibliography of public sources – including a Wall Street Journal article – attesting to the prevalence of foreign threats, as if to show Twitter they got it wrong. 7.Roth, receiving the questions, circulated them with other company executives, and complained that he was “frankly perplexed by the requests here, which seem more like something we’d get from a congressional committee than the Bureau.” 8.He added he was not “comfortable with the Bureau (and by extension the IC) demanding written answers.”

The idea of the FBI acting as conduit for the Intelligence Community is interesting, given that many agencies are barred from domestic operations. 9. He then sent another note internally, saying the premise of the questions was “flawed,” because “we’ve been clear that official state propaganda is definitely a thing on Twitter.” Note the italics for emphasis.10. Roth suggested they “get on the phone with Elvis ASAP and try to straighten this out,” to disabuse the agencies of any notion that state propaganda is not a “thing” on Twitter. 11. This exchange is odd among other things because some of the “bibliography” materials cited by the FITF are sourced to intelligence officials, who in turn cited the public sources. 12. The FBI responded to Friday’s report by saying it “regularly engages with private sector entities to provide information specific to identified foreign malign influence actors’ subversive, undeclared, covert, or criminal activities.”

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”..the question is finding a CEO who can keep Twitter alive.”

Musk Asks Twitter If He Should Step Down (ZH)

Elon Musk, perhaps finally fed up with micromanaging twitter or just really drunk after partying with Qatari royals (and Jared) after today’s terrific World Cup Final… … has asked Twitter users and his 122 million followers whether he should step down as head of the social media site and pledged that he would abide by the result of the 12 hour unscientific poll. Four hours into the vote, with some 9 million votes cast, 56.7% of those polled said Musk should, in fact, stand down. It wasn’t clear what percentage of bots of mailed in ballots had been cast. Musk prefaced the vote by tweeting that “Going forward, there will be a vote for major policy changes. My apologies. Won’t happen again.”

Subsequently, in response to tweeted comments that Musk should “hire someone as Twitter CEO… that way when things go wrong you can blame that person, but you still ultimate control as the owner”, the billionaire responded that “The question is not finding a CEO, the question is finding a CEO who can keep Twitter alive.” Musk also clarified to prospective replacements that any new CEO “must like pain a lot. One catch: you have to invest your life savings in Twitter and it has been in the fast lane to bankruptcy since May. Still want the job?” Musk then stated that the whole exercise is a Catch 22 as “No one wants the job who can actually keep Twitter alive. There is no successor.” Which then begs the question how Musk will abide by a poll that seeks his replacement if there is “no successor” in mind.

He then doubled down by paraphrasing Jack Handey and, of course, Gladiator:

Whether Musk was drunk or not when he sent out the tweet (early am Qatari time), the outcome as some cynics have noted, is unlikely to have any material impact on what happens at twitter. Musk’s pledge to hold votes on policy changes came after Twitter on Sunday announced it will remove accounts “created solely” to promote other social media platforms. Accounts promoting rivals and containing links to sites such as Facebook, Instagram and Mastodon will be taken down, the company said. A few hours later the tweet revealing that policy change was deleted.

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“When decisions were being made in 2020 and imposed upon the public, that’s when censorship counted the most..”

Twitter Censorship Contributed to Destructive Pandemic Policies (ET)

The recently revealed censorship that has plagued Twitter in recent years is “criminal,” according to former White House COVID adviser Dr. Scott Atlas, as it allowed “lies to be imposed on the public” during a pandemic that wrought untold damage worldwide. “When correct science policy is blocked, people die, and people died from the censorship,” Atlas, a special coronavirus adviser during the Trump administration and contributor to The Epoch Times, said in an interview. Atlas was speaking days after Elon Musk, the new owner of Twitter, released troves of internal files showing how the previous Twitter team built a blacklist to limit disfavored tweets’ visibility without the knowledge of those using the platform.

Among those flagged was Dr. Jay Bhattacharya of Stanford, whose tweet criticizing pandemic lockdowns shortly after joining the platform last August got him on the “trends blacklist” preventing the amplification of his tweets. But such revelations, Atlas said, are “only the tip of the iceberg.” “There’s a far larger story here that we need to hear,” he said, which he considers “far more nefarious and more systemic than isolated tweets being pulled down.” “This seems to be criminal behavior, and I think it needs to be investigated in the courts,” he said. Atlas wants to direct attention back to 2020, when health officials followed in the Chinese Communist Party’s footsteps to implement blanket COVID-19 lockdowns. In November of that year, while Atlas was still on the White House’s coronavirus task force, Twitter took down his post that argued mask-wearing was not effective in curbing the spread of the virus—a decision celebrated by some proponents of the measures, including fellow task force member Dr. Deborah Birx.

“One would think that the American public should hear what the adviser to the president is saying during the pandemic of 2020. Yet Twitter decided to simply block that discussion from the public,” he said. [..] Despite most states having a mask mandate until early this year, a number of studies found children and teenagers to be at a far lower risk of getting or dying from COVID-19, even with the emergence of new variants. But the “censorship of 2020,” be it deleting individual tweets, suspending accounts, or blocking the amplification of posts, had done its damage. “When decisions were being made in 2020 and imposed upon the public, that’s when censorship counted the most,” Atlas said.

“It created this illusion that there was a consensus among science and public health policy experts that lockdowns should be imposed; it created and perpetrated lies that if you were opposed to lockdowns, you were choosing the economy over lives, and that if you were opposed to lockdowns, you were somehow calling for letting the infection spread without any mitigation whatsoever,” he said. “They absolutely contributed to policies that killed massive numbers of people and destroyed children and low-income people, who are the most vulnerable. That’s why it’s criminal.”

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They will lose their powers when the new Congress is installed.

Democratic Members Warn Facebook Not to “Backslide” on Censorship (Turley)

With the restoration of free speech protections on Twitter, panic has grown on the left that its control over social media could come to an end. Now, some of the greatest advocates of censorship in Congress are specifically warning Facebook not to follow Twitter in restoring free speech to its platform. In a chilling letter from Reps. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), André Carson (D-Ind.), Kathy Castor (D-Fla.) and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Facebook was given a not-so-subtle threat that reducing its infamous censorship system will invite congressional action. The letter to Meta’s president of global affairs, Nick Clegg, is written on congressional stationery “as part of our ongoing oversight efforts.”

With House Republicans pledging to investigate social media censorship when they take control in January, these four Democratic members are trying to force Facebook to “recommit” to censoring opposing views and to make election censorship policies permanent. Otherwise, they suggest, they may be forced to exercise oversight into any move by Facebook to “alter or rollback certain misinformation policies.” In addition to demanding that Facebook preserve its bans on figures like former president Donald Trump, they want Facebook to expand its censorship overall because “unlike other major social media platforms, Meta’s policies do not prohibit posts that make unsubstantiated claims about voter fraud.”

Clegg is given Schiff’s telephone number to discuss Facebook’s compliance — an ironic contact point for a letter on censoring “disinformation.” After all, Schiff was one of the members of Congress who, before the 2020 presidential election, pushed the false claim that the Hunter Biden laptop was Russian disinformation, and he has been criticized for pushing false narratives on Trump-Russia collusion in the 2016 election. (Schiff has previously pressured social media companies to expand the censorship of opposing views).

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“Dangerous and unfounded election denial content” must be kept off the platform…”

Democrats Like Adam Schiff Are Scrambling To Save Censorship (Devine)

Adam Schiff popped up on CNN’s “State of The Union” show Sunday morning to issue barely veiled threats to Elon Musk for trying to restore free speech on Twitter. Ostensibly, the lame duck chairman of the House Intelligence Committee joined Jake Tapper to crow about expected charges against Donald Trump Monday from his January 6 star chamber. But Schiff moved on to complain about the “big problem right now with social media companies and their failure to moderate content and the explosion of hate on Twitter, the banning of journalists on Twitter.” Then he suggested ominously that Twitter and social media companies may not continue to enjoy “immunity from responsibility and liability.” In other words, keep policing free speech as an arm of the federal government or watch your business go up in smoke.


Schiff is a calculated propagandist, who lies under oath as easily as breathing, and knowingly peddles misinformation to Congress and to media outlets like CNN and MSNBC, whose gullible hosts keep bringing him back on their shows to mislead their audiences. In the dying days of his powerful reign as overseer of the nation’s intelligence agencies, abusing his access to the nation’s secrets, Schiff’s final assignment is to preserve the censorship regime his side of politics entrenched across Big Tech. On Tuesday he, and three other Dems he roped in, wrote a menacing letter “as part of our ongoing oversight efforts” to Nick Clegg, president of global affairs at Meta (Facebook’s new name), warning that, if the company went down Twitter’s path of free speech, the consequences would be dire. “Dangerous and unfounded election denial content” must be kept off the platform.

This is not 2 or 3 years ago, this is now

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“That is a far cry from overthrowing the U.S. government by force of violence.”

“‘Absurd’ To Call Oath Keepers Insurrectionists Or A National Security Threat, Former FBI Agent Testifies”

Former FBI Agent Calls Assertion Oath Keepers are Anti-Government ‘Absurd’ (ET)

The Oath Keepers did not try to overthrow the U.S. government on Jan. 6 and are not a threat to national security because the group is anti-tyranny, not anti-government, a former FBI agent and Department of Defense analyst testified Dec. 15-16 in Alaska Superior Court. John Guandolo, who handled counter-terrorism and criminal investigations during nearly 13 years as an FBI special agent, said he found “absurd” the idea that Oath Keepers tried to overthrow the federal government. Guandolo was at the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, in a personal capacity. Some of the Oath Keepers might have broken federal laws on Jan. 6 for allegedly trying to delay the counting of Electoral College votes, Guandolo said, “but to conflate that to being the same as the entire organization wants to overthrow the U.S. government by violence … that’s absurd,” Guandolo said.

“And I think it’s an unprofessional assessment.” Guandolo’s testimony came on the third and fourth days of a state trial to determine if Rep. David Eastman (R-Wasilla) should be removed from office under the Alaska Constitution because he is a life member of the Oath Keepers. Eastman won reelection on Nov. 8 by a 24-point margin. Alaska Superior Court Judge Jack McKenna issued a temporary restraining order preventing the state of Alaska from certifying the House 27th District election results until the trial ends. Former GOP candidate Randall Kowalke—who left the Republican Party in 2019—sued Eastman personally in July, claiming a loyalty clause in the Alaska Constitution should bar him from office because the Oath Keepers allegedly advocate for the overthrow of the federal government.

Earlier in the bench trial before McKenna, two analysts from centers on domestic extremism testified that the Oath Keepers went into the Capitol on Jan. 6 and tried to overthrow the government. Testifying from his office in Dallas, Guandolo told the judge there is no evidence to support that accusation. He ripped the testimony of analysts Jonathan Lewis and Matthew Kriner as “grossly incomplete” and “wholly unprofessional.” Oath Keepers founder Elmer Stewart Rhodes III and Oath Keepers Florida leader Kelly Meggs were found guilty of seditious conspiracy on Nov. 29 for actions on Jan. 6, in a jury trial in U.S. District Court in Washington. Four other defendants were acquitted of seditious conspiracy, but convicted of other offenses.

“The phrase that I saw most often [in indictments] was that so-and-so intended to affect the government by stopping or delaying the congressional proceeding, which was to certify the election,” Guandolo said when questioned by defense attorney Joseph Miller. “That is a far cry from overthrowing the U.S. government by force of violence.”

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“$300 trillion of global debt and $2 quadrillion of quasi debt in the form of derivatives can only end in currencies going to zero..”

US Doublespeak Will Not Stop Gold’s Imminent Surge (Von Greyerz)

The clouds look extremely dark for 2023 and beyond. As I have pointed out above, there is no attempt to reach a peace settlement in Ukraine. Weapons and money are pouring in to keep the war going. And the sanctions forced upon Europe by the US are having a devastating effect for the citizens of most European countries. Energy costs are up 2-3X or more for many consumers and food inflation in Germany for example jumped 21% year on year in November. In the UK, many ordinary people cannot afford to keep their heating on or to eat properly. And this is before the cold winter sets in. The situation in Ukraine seems to deteriorate and with Russia and the US involved, as well as China in the periphery, it could easily escalate.

But as I have spelt out numerous times, $300 trillion of global debt and $2 quadrillion of quasi debt in the form of derivatives can only end in currencies going to zero and sovereign borrowers defaulting. A global sovereign default should be seen as an indisputable fact and it is only a question of how long it takes. These events are normally a process. As Hemingway said, you go bankrupt “Gradually and then suddenly”. The beginning can be a slow process and then at some point the shock comes so fast that no one will have time to react. So no-one must believe that there will be time to get out once the early “gradual” phase starts. Just to be clear, the gradual phase is here already although the world is in denial. The buy the dip mentality is still prevailing as evidenced by the partial recovery in stock markets.

Few realise that this is it and the next devastating fall in stocks is going to fool practically all investors. The majority will not get out but hope for a correction so they can exit at a higher level. And once the correction comes, they will be bullish again. Once everyone is back into the market it will fall again. Most of the investors will be fooled most of the time until their portfolio is virtually worthless. The Western world hasn’t experienced a real bear market since 1929-32. That time it took 25 years for the Dow to recover to the 1929 high. The generosity of Central banks has made stock investments a one way game since the early 1980s. But now the game is up and few will realise it until they have lost everything. So the “suddenly” will be like an earthquake seemingly coming out of nowhere. It can come in 2023 or it might take a few years.

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Oppenheimer

 

 

Boys keep swinging

 

 

 

 

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