Jun 052022
 


James Ensor The intrigue 1890

 

Russia Is Winning The Economic War – And No Closer To Withdrawing Troops (G.)
US Officials Admit They Lied About Ukraine Success and Russian Failures (GP)
NATO Chief: Ukraine Shouldn’t Drop Goal to Drive Russia Out of Crimea (Antiwar)
Bilderberg does China (Escobar)
Subpoena Wars (Turley)
COVID Vaccines Linked To 25% Increase In Cardiac Arrest (INN)
Judge Rules In Favor Of St. Paul Unions Over Covid Vaccination Mandate (TC)
Italy and Germany End Travel Restrictions (CS)
Turkey Accuses Greece Of Harboring Terrorist Organizations (AMNA)
Laptop From Hell May Produce Data With Disaster For Joe Biden (Times)

 

 

 

 

I’m going in there

 

 

 

 

From The Guardian, no less.

Russia Is Winning The Economic War – And No Closer To Withdrawing Troops (G.)

It is now three months since the west launched its economic war against Russia, and it is not going according to plan. On the contrary, things are going very badly indeed. Sanctions were imposed on Vladimir Putin not because they were considered the best option, but because they were better than the other two available courses of action: doing nothing or getting involved militarily. The first set of economic measures were introduced immediately after the invasion, when it was assumed Ukraine would capitulate within days. That didn’t happen, with the result that sanctions – while still incomplete – have gradually been intensified.

There is, though, no immediate sign of Russia pulling out of Ukraine and that’s hardly surprising, because the sanctions have had the perverse effect of driving up the cost of Russia’s oil and gas exports, massively boosting its trade balance and financing its war effort. In the first four months of 2022, Putin could boast a current account surplus of $96bn (£76bn) – more than treble the figure for the same period of 2021. When the EU announced its partial ban on Russian oil exports earlier this week, the cost of crude oil on the global markets rose, providing the Kremlin with another financial windfall. Russia is finding no difficulty finding alternative markets for its energy, with exports of oil and gas to China in April up more than 50% year on year.

That’s not to say the sanctions are pain-free for Russia. The International Monetary Fund estimates the economy will shrink by 8.5% this year as imports from the west collapse. Russia has stockpiles of goods essential to keep its economy going, but over time they will be used up. But Europe is only gradually weaning itself off its dependency on Russian energy, and so an immediate financial crisis for Putin has been averted. The rouble – courtesy of capital controls and a healthy trade surplus – is strong. The Kremlin has time to find alternative sources of spare parts and components from countries willing to circumvent western sanctions.

When the global movers and shakers met in Davos last week, the public message was condemnation of Russian aggression and renewed commitment to stand solidly behind Ukraine. But privately, there was concern about the economic costs of a prolonged war.

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“Russia is the only superpower with a self-sufficient economy..”

US Officials Admit They Lied About Ukraine Success and Russian Failures (GP)

If you think the West has learned its lesson and opted to focus on truth, think again. Germany’s Economy Minister, Robert Habeck, was peddling these whoppers to his own government this week: Western sanctions in response to Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine are still taking a heavy toll on the Russian war machine. . . .The Russian economy is collapsing,” . . . adding that Germany had played its part here by reducing exports to Russia in March by 60%, with an even sharper fall expected in April. The obvious question for any reporter with the brain power of a cretin would be, “what is the evidence that Russia’s economy is collapsing?” The truth is that all sectors are firing on all cylinders.

Just because Germany has decided to commit economic hari kari by declining to purchase cheap Russian oil, does not mean that Russia is bleeding out financially. The Economist reported two weeks ago that Russia is running a record trade surplus. Yes, Russia is importing fewer Mercedes and BMWs via the open market. First, Russia is not dependent on having western luxury items filling western owned stores. Second, the Russian mafia is more than willing to fill the gap and obtain such goods via the black market. Seems like the West never learns. Habeck also forgets the first rule of crisis management–when you are in a hole, stop digging. He made this even more outlandish claim:

“Moscow had lost access to parts crucial to its ability to fight the war, . . . such as “security updates for airplanes, with the result that the planes will soon be grounded”. He apparently did not get the briefing, widely available in the public domain, that Russia builds it own planes, rockets, space ships and tanks. Putin did not outsource critical industry to China or Mexico. Reality will remind the United States and its crazy European allies that Russia is the only superpower with a self-sufficient economy. The economy of Russia is not dependent on having a Russian version of Rodeo Drive filled with overpriced baubles.

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“..many US officials privately doubt Ukraine could expel Russia from the region..”

NATO Chief: Ukraine Shouldn’t Drop Goal to Drive Russia Out of Crimea (Antiwar)

In an interview with The Washington Post, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said Ukraine shouldn’t avoid declaring ambitious war aims of driving Russia out of the eastern Donbas region and the Crimean Peninsula, which Russia has controlled since 2014. “They have the right to say that they are fighting for the whole of Ukraine,” Stoltenberg said. The Post report said that many US officials privately doubt Ukraine could expel Russia from the region and that such goals would “doom Kyiv to an endless war.” Stoltenberg has warned that NATO should be prepared to provide Ukraine with long-term support for its fight against Russia. “We need to be prepared that this may actually drag on for a long time,” he said.

Ukrainian President Voldymr Zelensky recently rejected a suggestion from former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, who said Ukraine should cede territory to Russia to achieve peace. Earlier in the war, Russia made clear that its demands for a ceasefire include Ukraine dropping its claim to Crimea and recognizing the independence of the breakaway Donbas republics. As the war grinds on, Russia is making slow, but steady gains in the eastern Donbas region. Russian forces have also controlled most of the Kherson oblast, which is north of Crimea, for months now, and there are signs that Moscow is considering annexing the region. Retaking territories now controlled by Russia would take a massive offensive by Ukraine, but Ukrainian forces are taking heavy losses. Zelensky said this week that between 60 and 100 Ukrainian soldiers are being killed every day.

While the US and its allies have shipped billions in weapons to Ukraine since Russia invaded, Ukrainian officials say it isn’t enough to mount a counterattack. Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov said Friday that Kyiv “needs more” to mount a “sufficient counterattack and kick them outside of our country to liberate all occupied territory.”


Future Ukraine

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“They are all paying close attention to the Russia gas-for-rubles experiment…”

Bilderberg does China (Escobar)

A serious debate is raging across virtually all sectors of Chinese society on the American weaponization of the world financial casino. The conclusions are inevitable: get rid of US Treasuries, fast, by any means necessary; more imports of commodities and strategic materials (thus the importance of the Russia-China strategic partnership); and firmly secure overseas assets, especially those foreign currency reserves. Meanwhile Bilderberg’s “diverse group”, on the other side of the pond, is discussing, among other things, what will really happen in case they force the IMF racket to blow up (a key plan to implement The Great Reset, or “Great Narrative”).

They are starting to literally freak out with the slowly but surely emergence of an alternative, resource-based monetary/financial system: exactly what the Eurasia Economic Union (EAEU) is currently discussing and designing, with Chinese input. Imagine a counter-Bilderberg system where a basket of Global South actors, resource-rich but economically poor, are able to issue their own currencies backed by commodities, and finally get rid of their status of IMF hostages. They are all paying close attention to the Russia gas-for-rubles experiment. And in China’s particular case, what will always matter is loads of productive capital underpinning a massive, extremely deep industrial and civil infrastructure.

No wonder Davos and Bilderberg messenger boys, when they look at The Grand Chessboard, are filled with dread: their era of perpetual free lunch is over. What would delight cynics, skeptics, neoplatonists and Taoists galore is that it was Davos-Bilderberg Men (and Women) who actually boxed themselves into zugzwang. All dressed up – with nowhere to go. Even JP Morgan’s Jamie Dimon – who didn’t even bother to go to Bilderberg – is scared, saying an economic “hurricane” is coming. And overturning the chessboard is no remedy: at best that may invite a ceremonious tuxedo visit by Mr. Sarmat and Mr. Zircon carrying some hypersonic bubbly.

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“..the greatest costs will be borne by the public, if our legal proceedings become as performative and shallow as our politics.”

Subpoena Wars (Turley)

The problem is not that the committee will move forward with hearings or a report. Despite its partisan composition and agenda, there is always a value to greater transparency about what occurred on that tragic day. The problem is the effort to ratchet up interest through conflict. The committee has taken the rare step of subpoenaing GOP colleagues, including House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, and threatening to hold them in contempt like Navarro and other former Trump officials. Despite years of bitter political divisions, the two parties have long avoided using subpoenas against each other. It was viewed as a step toward mutually assured destruction if House members unleashed inherent investigatory powers on each other.

House Democratic leaders, however, shattered that long tradition of restraint despite the fact that they may gain little from the effort. What they will lose is a long-standing detente on the use of subpoenas against colleagues — and they are creating a new precedent for such internal subpoenas just months before they could find themselves in the minority. Today’s hunters then could become the hunted, if Republicans claim the same license after November’s elections. The House already is a dysfunctional body that allows for little compromise or dialogue between parties. The targeting of fellow members now will remove one of the few remaining restraints on unbridled partisan rage. Judge Faruqui encouraged Navarro to consider the basis of his self-defense when Navarro seemed intent on self-immolation.

In addition to announcing that he would represent himself, Navarro made an extended statement on the steps of the courthouse in his defense. He then incongruously said he could not discuss “legal matters” before plunging again into his legal defense points. Navarro is known as someone who tends toward the path of greatest resistance. In a city known for highly managed criminal defendants with legions of lawyers and PR advisers, Navarro was a captivating figure as he held forth outside the courthouse. Yet for all that he has in terms of personal guts, he lacks legal authority. The problem is that even as he claimed executive privilege to avoid answering any of the House committee’s questions, he was publishing a book and giving interviews on the very subject matter of the subpoenas.

It was an ill-considered course that may make him an icon on the right but could also make him a convicted defendant. As he repeatedly pitched his book outside the court, it seemed clear that his priority was not acquittal. Navarro at one point asked, “Who are these people?” I have found myself asking the same question about all of the players in this subpoena war. Institutions and individuals alike seem to be in a crazed fit with little concern for how their actions may play out beyond the next election. But the greatest costs will be borne by the public, if our legal proceedings become as performative and shallow as our politics.

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Rare side effects.

COVID Vaccines Linked To 25% Increase In Cardiac Arrest (INN)

A new study by Israeli researchers and published in Nature has revealed an increase of over 25 percent in cardiovascular-related emergency calls in the young-adult population, following the rollout of COVID vaccines, among both males and females. No similar increase was found due to COVID infection alone. Israel health authorities and the U.S. Centers of Disease Control (CDC) have acknowledged a link between COVID vaccines and specific cardiovascular complications. The risk of myocarditis after receiving a second vaccine dose is now estimated to be between 1 in 3000 to 1 in 6000 in men aged 16 to 24. Recent articles in scientific journals, however, have sought to suggest that cardiovascular complications following COVID infection are more common than those following vaccination.

This assertion is contradicted by the findings from a recent study conducted by Israeli researchers, using data from Israel National Emergency Medical Services (EMS) related to “cardiac arrest and acute coronary syndrome EMS calls in the 16–39-year-old population” between 2019 and 2021. This enabled them to compare baseline (pre-COVID epidemic) to COVID epidemic without vaccines, to COVID epidemic following widespread vaccine takeup. An increase of over 25% was detected in both call types during January–May 2021, compared with the years 2019–2020. That is to say, “increased rates of vaccination … are associated with increased number of CA [cardiac arrest] and ACS [acute coronary syndrome].” By contrast, the trial “did not detect a statistically significant association between the COVID-19 infection rates and the CA and ACS weekly call counts.”

While the dangers of myocarditis for young males have gained widespread attention, this study found a larger increase in CA and ACS events among females that was linked to COVID vaccination. Myocarditis is known to be a “major cause of sudden, unexpected deaths in adults less than 40 years of age and is assessed to be responsible for 12–20% of these deaths,” the study’s authors note. They add that their findings have been mirrored by researchers in Germany and Scotland. They caution that given these findings, “It is essential to raise awareness among patients and clinicians with respect to related symptoms (e.g., chest discomfort and shortness of breath) following vaccination or COVID-19 infection to ensure that potential harm is minimized.”

Athlete deaths
https://twitter.com/i/status/1533320290499018753

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This seems the only valid way to look at it:

“It is difficult for this Court to imagine what could be more intrusive and more destructive to the employer-employee relationship than requiring employees to forfeit their bodily autonomy in the name of maintaining their livelihood”

Judge Rules In Favor Of St. Paul Unions Over Covid Vaccination Mandate (TC)

A judge ruled Thursday that the city of St. Paul’s COVID vaccination policy for police, firefighters and legions of other unionized city workers should have been part of the bargaining process, and he barred the city from enforcing it until it is approved as part of a negotiated agreement. The employee unions filed lawsuits last year over the coronavirus vaccine mandate for employees, calling it an unfair labor practice — and the judge agreed. The firefighters’ lawsuit noted that the city didn’t negotiate with the International Association of Fire Fighters Local 21 before making “a unilateral change to the terms and conditions” of employment for Local 21 members.

In his ruling, Ramsey County Judge Leonardo Castro noted that the city didn’t engage in bad faith by implementing the vaccination policy, but nevertheless enacted an unfair labor policy. “The City was faced with the height of a pandemic and based its actions upon what it believed to be in the best interest of the health and safety of its employees and the public,” Castro wrote in the ruling. “There was no malice, conspiracy or employee targeting involved.” The city did engage in discussions of the policy with union representatives, Castro wrote, though not in formal bargaining. For an issue such as injecting your own body with a foreign substance versus losing your job, he reasoned, that’s not enough.

“It is difficult for this Court to imagine what could be more intrusive and more destructive to the employer-employee relationship than requiring employees to forfeit their bodily autonomy in the name of maintaining their livelihood,” he wrote.

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What will they all do in September?

Italy and Germany End Travel Restrictions (CS)

Following the lead of other nations across Europe and the world, both Italy and Germany announced they were ending all COVID-related travel restrictions and requirements for travellers looking to enter their countries. “As of June 1, 2022, a Green Pass or equivalent certificate is no longer needed to enter Italy. All Covid-19 related entry restrictions have been lifted.” the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation announced on its website. Before the announcement, those wishing to enter Italy had to provide proof of vaccination, proof that they had recovered from COVID-19, or provide a negative COVID-19 test. These requirements are now gone. The decision comes roughly one month after Italy scrapped its vaccine passport within the country.

Similarly, while not as absolute as Italy’s decision, Germany has decided to end nearly all travel restrictions until the end of August. According to an update on the German Federal Foreign Office’s website, “As of June 1, the requirements to register before entry, provide a negative test result and to quarantine only applies to travellers who have stayed in an area of variant of concern. Extension of the Ordinance on Coronavirus Entry Regulations until August 31, 2022.” Italy and Germany now join the growing list of sensible countries that have ended the vaccine passport and travel restrictions in the wake of the incredibly mild Omicron variant.

This list of countries includes the following: the UK, Denmark, Greece, Iceland, Norway, Austria, Romania, and many others. Canada, of course, remains one of the most thoroughly backwards countries on the planet and has extended its federal vaccine mandate until the end of June. This includes the federal travel ban on unvaccinated Canadians, who, being unable to board a plane, train, ferry, or cross over into the US, remain de facto prisoners in their own country.

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Erdogan’s standard threat.

Turkey Accuses Greece Of Harboring Terrorist Organizations (AMNA)

Turkey’s recent accusations that Greece is supposedly harboring terrorist organizations are “false and unfounded,” and are therefore “rejected in their entirety,” said Greek diplomatic sources on Saturday. Greece, sources clarified, “fully implements European Union decisions in the fight against terrorism.” Anadolu news agency had earlier reported that the Turkish Foreign Ministry summoned the Greek ambassador to Ankara to protest that allegedly Athens provides terrorist organizations with opportunities to engage in various activities. According to Anadolu, Greek Ambassador to Ankara Christodoulos Lazaris was called in because Greek authorities allowed a protest gathering be held by the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) near the Turkish embassy in Athens, an organization that has been classified as a terrorist one by the EU and by Turkish authorities, it was added.

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The Times of London publishes Russian disinformation.

Laptop From Hell May Produce Data With Disaster For Joe Biden (Times)

Mac Isaac is an albino with restricted sight who was vague in interviews in 2020 about whether he got a good look at his customer. In his book, American Injustice, he says he made repeated attempts to return the laptop and then hand it over to the authorities. He said he was angered that, after he gave all the material to the FBI, it did not feature in the first impeachment of President Trump over his pressure on President Zelensky of Ukraine to investigate the Bidens. Mac Isaac says that spurred him to hand a copy of the data to Robert Costello, a lawyer for Rudy Giuliani, who in turn was acting as Trump’s lawyer. Mac Isaac says that the customer who came in with three liquid-damaged laptops appeared “intoxicated” with speech that was “a little slurred”.

Speaking to a Fox News podcast, he added: “When I actually left the shop probably about 45 minutes after he left the shop, I noticed his vehicle was still there. I just assumed that he was sleeping one off.” One of the laptops was a write-off and one just needed an external keyboard. “The third computer, there was a glimmer of life, but it required me to check it in so I could take it apart, disconnect some components to get the machine up and running,” Mac Isaac said. “I explained that process with him, I printed up an authorisation allowing me to take custody of the machine. And I had him sign that document, review the document with him.” It contained his usual proviso that, if unclaimed after 90 days, the computer was considered abandoned and became Mac Isaac’s property.

He says that the manual nature of dragging files and then comparing some to see if the data was intact led him to see what was on the computer. “That’s when I realised that the person . . . that’s storing in a lot of this homemade porn is actually the guy that dropped off the laptop,” he said. Mac Isaac denies he breached Hunter Biden’s privacy. “He wanted me to recover his data. When a customer requires a data recovery it’s usually for two things, movies and pictures. It’s for the things that you can’t replace,” he said. He says he opened a long video to check for digital corruption and found issues of another sort. “That just happened to be a homemade video of Hunter [doing] amazingly multiple illegal acts at the same time . . . smoking crack, while engaged in sex trade — I don’t know — I’m pretty sure, I’m not a lawman.”

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May 262022
 


Gustave Courbet The village maidens 1852

 

History is Being Written Before our Eyes (Baliushka)
Russia, China Give World a Glimpse of What WWIII Could Look Like (Celente)
Russia To Open Sea Corridors From Ukraine Ports Amid Wheat Crisis (ZH)
Grains of Deceit (Saker)
‘Fast-Tracked’ Russian Citizenship For Occupied Ukrainian Territories (ZH)
Defending Sovereignty: The Fight of our Lifetime (Malone)
Summary of ‘2000 Mules’ (Attkisson)
FBI Spied on 3.3 Million Americans Without a Warrant (ET)
Comey et al Were “Fired Up” to Pursue the False Alfa Bank Claims (Turley)
German Regulators Recommend mRNA Vaccination for Young Children (Eugyp)
Monkeypoxmania (CJ Hopkins)

 

 

 

 

Assange saw it all before you did

 

 

 

 

And it’s not us who write it.

History is Being Written Before our Eyes (Baliushka)

In 1945 the US and the UK betrayed and turned on their ally, the Soviet Union, which was far too victorious against Nazi Germany for their taste. For the war-crime bombings of Dresden, ordered by the half-American Churchill, and of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, ordered by the full-American Truman, were warnings – issued not to the already crushed Germany and Japan, but to the USSR. Then, from 1945 on, a series of covert and not so covert operations were carried out by Western spies and terrorists in order to undermine further the Soviet Union, notably in the Baltics and above all in the Western Ukraine (right up until 1958). Many so-called ‘former’ Nazis were employed by the Western Powers to do this dirty work for them.

Even after losing its wars in Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan, in 2014 the United States organised and financed a violent, anti-democratic regime-change operation in Kiev, at a cost of $5 billion to the US taxpayer. It had now finally bitten off more than it could chew. As a result, the Russian Federation, a Superpower, though mocked and despised at the time by the arrogant Obama as a political and economic ‘regional’ minnow, had to take back the Crimea after its 60-year loan to the Ukraine. Otherwise, it would have lost its key Black Sea naval base in Sevastopol to the Pentagon, just as it had briefly lost it to the Anglo-French Fascists in 1856 and the German Fascists in 1942. It also had to defend Russian-speaking Eastern Ukraine by setting up a buffer zone, so buying itself time to prepare for a possible full-blown campaign of liberation there.

From 2014 on, Russia made eight years of highly meticulous preparations, ideological, political, diplomatic, economic, military, energy and agricultural, implementing a policy of import substitution to increase its independence and sovereignty. For Russia knew that the US would flood the Ukraine with NATO instructors and weapons in order to attack its people there and Russia itself, even if Russia did not launch a campaign to liberate the eastern Ukraine. The US will have a high price to pay for the foolish arrogance of this militarisation, carried out together with its NATO minions. Once the Crimea had voluntarily and democratically returned to Russia after the Western annexation of the Kiev regime territories in 2014, Russia experienced the illegal sanctions imposed on it by the Evil Empire. These would be implemented in even greater numbers, if Russia was forced to take back its ancestral territories of Novorossiya and Malorossiya and again set up a demilitarised and denazified zone in, at the very least, Eastern Europe.

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There’s that phrase again: “..indivisibility of security…”

Russia, China Give World a Glimpse of What WWIII Could Look Like (Celente)

Russia and China are not natural allies and some geopolitical observers say it is remarkable that the countries have developed such a close relationship in such a relatively short amount of time. On Tuesday, in a remarkable show of unity, the two countries flew strategic bombers over the Sea of Japan— just outside Japanese and South Korean air defense zones— in what Reuters called a “pointed farewell to U.S. President Joe Biden as he concluded a trip to Asia.” One U.S. official tried to use the joint exercise as an example of why India should not rely on Moscow. “It also shows that Russia will stand with China in the East and South China Seas, not with other Indo-Pacific states,” the official told The Financial Times.

Russia said in a statement that the bombers — Tu-95MS strategic missile carriers and Chinese H-6 bombers — did not break international law. Japan’s Defense Minister Nobuo Kishi said during a news conference that “the fact that this action was taken during the Quad summit makes it more provocative than in the past.” “As the international community responds to Russia’s aggression against Ukraine, the fact that China took such action in collaboration with Russia, which is the aggressor, is cause for concern. It cannot be overlooked,” he said. Japan and South Korea said they scrambled fighter jets after at least four Chinese and four Russian warplanes in response. (The Quad summit is held among the U.S., Australia, Japan, and India…and its mission is to counter China in the Pacific region.)

Despite the weeks of pressure from the U.S. and European countries, Beijing has refused to criticize Russia and has, instead, blamed the West for having set the stage for the war. China said in March that it would like to bring its relationship with Russia to “a higher level.” “The Ukrainian issue… is not only the outbreak of the long term accumulation of security conflicts in Europe but also the result of the Cold War mentality and group confrontation,” Wang Yi, China’s foreign minister, said at the time. “In the long run, we should learn the lessons of the Ukraine crisis, respond to the legitimate security concerns of all parties based on the principles of mutual respect and indivisibility of security.”

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[Russian] Black Sea Fleet specialists cleared more than 12,000 mines from the seaport and its surrounding areas.

Russia To Open Sea Corridors From Ukraine Ports Amid Wheat Crisis (ZH)

After being accused of using the food supply as blackmail and a bargaining chip, Russia said Wednesday its military will open up protected sea corridors for international shipping to pass through from seven Ukrainian ports that have thus far been blockaded. According to a defense ministry statement reported by Bloomberg late in the day, “Humanitarian maritime corridors from ports on the Black Sea and Azov Sea, including Odesa, will operate from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily.” The announcement comes two days after the head of the United Nations World Food Program David Beasley ripped Moscow for what he dubbed a “declaration of war” on global food security. He’s been urging “political solution” to the crisis of blocked Black Sea ports, saying the war in ‘the world’s breadbasket’ threatens to unleash “famine, the destabilization of nations as well as mass migration by necessity.”

Millions of people in 43 countries dependent on grain from the war-torn region are “knocking on famine’s door,” he said. However, Russia has stressed that its military is engaged in extensive and complex demining operations due thousands of mines dotting Ukraine’s coast placed by Ukrainian forces, making international shipping dangerous and impossible. As reported in the independent Moscow Times: The port of Mariupol has resumed normal operations, Russia’s Defense Ministry announced Wednesday. The Defense Ministry said Black Sea Fleet specialists cleared more than 12,000 mines from the seaport and its surrounding areas.

Some one-third of global wheat supplies originate from Ukraine and Russia, with the bulk of it passing through the Black Sea. On Wednesday Russia said it remains ready and willing to work with the West to reach a solution, but that easing sanctions is a necessity: “We have repeatedly stated on this point that a solution to the food problem requires a comprehensive approach, including the lifting of sanctions that have been imposed on Russian exports and financial transactions,” Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Andrei Rudenko was quoted as saying by Interfax. But the statement called on Ukraine to cease deployment of sea mines, and to engage in immediate demining operations: “And it also requires the demining by the Ukrainian side of all ports where ships are anchored. Russia is ready to provide the necessary humanitarian passage, which it does every day,” Rudenko added.

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A lot of grain is still exported.

Grains of Deceit (Saker)

The Western corporate media are masters of deceit, by providing just enough information to create a narrative, but deliberating omitting information or background data that alters the narrative negatively. At first sight, this narrative is so skewed, and many will be quick to dismiss it as nonsense. I would be careful to do this as there is a broader narrative effort being shaped by the U.S., EU and NATO. The implication that there is a global food crisis looming solely due to Ukrainian ports not being able to export crops is exasperating. Ukraine is still exporting grain crops via Romanian ports, which continue to operate normally, in particular, Constanta as reported by DW, (DW April 2022). It is predicted that 1.5million tons (mmt) of Ukrainian grain will be exported out of Romanian ports in May alone and it is anticipated that 3mmt can be exported in the near future. (Reuters May 2022), (Reuters 24 April 2022)

Although the throughput will not be the same level as Odessa for example. Even Lithuania has said that it can help to export Ukrainian grain through its railway network and ports. Additionally, the use of the Danube as a transportation waterway to EU ports is being done via barges from inland ports, along with proposals for the use of Adriatic ports, (HINA 24 May 2022) Road transport is being used to take crops to Romania port hubs, it is not as quick either, yet it is being done despite bottlenecks at border points. The Ukrainian rail network is already under pressure with military shipments and the rail infrastructure has consequently been degraded in Russian air strikes and as such can only be used in a limited manner, (Zdopravy cz in Czech).

[..] On a trivial point, once more there are aspects that don’t tally, 5 to 9 weeks waiting to get crops exported (NEXTA) compared to 6 days (Sky News 23 May 2022). Back to the bigger picture missing from the MSM narrative . Looking briefly at the figures on grain exports for a wider take on the subject. 2020-2021 2021-2022 Ukrainian grain production: 65mmt forecast 80mmt Russian grain production: 85 mmt forecast: 85mmt As Reuters reported this week, Ukraine still managed to export crops: “The ministry data showed that Ukraine has exported 46.51 mmt so far in the 2021/22 July-June season, versus 40.85 mmt a season earlier.” (Reuters 19 May 2022)

Frankly speaking, 22 mmt of grain will make little difference to the global shortage as it stands. Paradoxically Ukraine is paying for weapons provided by the West through grain exports.” Is it any surprise that Ukraine wants to use Odessa to ship its 70% expected export of grain crops and other products, as to be able to continue to pay for weapon deliveries? Ukrainian exports have largely transferred to Romanian, judging by the ship congestion seen on AIS. Importantly, none of the Western experts or corporate MSM outlets have been able to mention the fact that Russia is the world’s largest exporter of grain, about 4 times the amount of wheat that Ukraine does, about 18% of global exports and this year is expected record crops harvest. According to FAO STAT, Ukraine was the 8th largest wheat producer whereas Russia was in third position in 2020, behind China and India.

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I guess if that’s what they want…

‘Fast-Tracked’ Russian Citizenship For Occupied Ukrainian Territories (ZH)

In the biggest indicator thus far in the over three-month long war in Ukraine that Russia intends to likely fully annex territory in the East and South, Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday signed a decree which allows residents of Russian-occupied Kherson and Zaporizhzhia to gain fast-tracked Russian citizenship. Already the same policy is currently in effect for the breakaway eastern republics of Donetsk and Luhansk, the latter which is now reported to be almost completely in Russian forces’ control, as final battles with Ukrainian fighters are centered in the Luhansk cities of Sievierodonetsk and Lysychansk. Since 2019 an estimated 200,000 people in the two far eastern regions have gained Russian passports through the policy, which is now being extended to the Russian-controlled southern cities.

“Citizens of Ukraine, the Donetsk People’s Republic (DNR), or the Luhansk People’s Republic (LNR), permanently residing in the territory of the DNR, LNR, the Zaporizhzhia region of Ukraine or the Kherson region of Ukraine, have the right to apply for citizenship of the Russian Federation in a simplified manner,” the decree reads.Ukraine was swift to condemn the move as a violation of its sovereignty and of international law and norms. Its foreign ministry said, “The illegal issuing of passports… is a flagrant violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, as well as norms and principles of international humanitarian law.”

Meanwhile also on Wednesday Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky slammed the door on the idea of making territorial concessions for the sake of ending the war. “It’s possible if Russia shows at least something. When I say at least something, I mean pulling back troops to where they were before Feb. 24,” which marked the start of the invasion. He even said on Tuesday that Russia must hand back Crimea as well. He put the ball in Moscow’s court, saying it must “shift from the bloody war to diplomacy” if it hopes for the war to end.

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Malone beyond vaccines.

Defending Sovereignty: The Fight of our Lifetime (Malone)

It is state’s rights – as imperfect as that system is, that protects us from the WHO/globalist power grab to leverage public health to compromise the sovereignty of the United States. The current strategic agenda of those seeking to advance globalism and global governance policies at the expense of the autonomy of nation-states is often referred to as the New World Order. Those advocating for the New World Order include the World Economic Forum, transnational corporations/globalized investment capital, the UN, World Trade Organization, World Bank and now the World Health Organization. These entities have, to a more or lesser extent, gained control of the Federal government through leveraging the regulatory capture of our federalized agencies, departments and institutions.

Money from these entities flows into the coffers of Congress to influence law makers. Often, treaties and agreements on the global level codify these arrangements. This ensures that our federal government is coopted by these entities. Our federal government believes that it will be stronger when states have little or no control over the rules and regulations of the state. This is not what our founding fathers intended, and this is when the rights of all of us are trampled on. Our constitution codifies that each state maintains its own set of laws, rules and regulations. The beauty of this system is the diversity of cultures can be maintained within states. Living in Texas is very different than living in New Hampshire, and I believe that this is a good thing.

Although states are stronger when there is a federal government appropriately assuming and defending those responsibilities enumerated under the US Constitution, they are also guaranteed the freedom to have their own cultural identity and rule of law. This is the beauty of our Constitution and Bill of Rights. This interweaving of states rights under the limited umbrella of a Federal government.

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“..it seems clear that many who are publicly commenting, including some of the harshest critics, haven’t actually watched the film..”

Summary of ‘2000 Mules’ (Attkisson)

[..] the response to 2000 Mules has been swift and largely predictable. Trump advocates insist it proves game-changing election fraud in 2020. Trump opponents claim it’s just another debunked conspiracy theory that proves nothing. In the predominantly left-leaning establishment news media, the figures who have addressed the documentary tend to promote the latter conspiracy theory interpretation— advising people not to see the film, while simultaneously assuring them there’s nothing to see. Meantime, it seems clear that many who are publicly commenting, including some of the harshest critics, haven’t actually watched the film. So we’re left with a documentary that— if the evidence is true—would be one of the most important and impactful films of its time, but is likely being viewed almost exclusively by those in no need of conversion.

There was a time prior to 2015, before Donald Trump entered national politics, when the forensic work described in the film would have been done by credible news organizations and journalists, and by independent law enforcement bodies. Those days are gone. Most of the news media issued a collective shrug in the face of an election that was at the very least unusual, with unprecedented changes made under the auspices of Covid, with intervention by billionaire third party activists pouring money into projects like drop boxes, with positions and final calls getting switched, with polls that were wrong, with ballots that had no chain of custody, with a flood that never actually occurred but stopped counting at a Georgia precinct until the Republican observers went home, and much more.

Worse, some in the media insisted that questions and suspicious happenings should not be investigated even if the outcome would reassure a skeptical public the election was fair. To feel otherwise, we were told, was to be a conspiracy theorist of the worst kind bent on treason or the fall of democracy itself. Journalists and political figures declared, without evidence, that there was no fraud. When fraud emerged, they said there was no widespread fraud. When there was evidence of widespread fraud, they said there was no widespread fraud that would have changed the results. Yet they had no firsthand investigation to support these positions. Whenever opposing claims were made or differing intepretations were possible, they sided with one and called the other “conspiracies,” as if they hadn’t noticed that, in the prior four years, so many conspiracies had proven true, and so many declared truths had proven false.

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To no-one’s surprise.

FBI Spied on 3.3 Million Americans Without a Warrant (ET)

Top House Republicans are demanding answers from the FBI after court-ordered information came to light showing that the federal agency had collected the information of over 3 million Americans without a warrant. In a May 25 letter to FBI Director Christopher Wray, Reps. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) and Mike Turner (R-Ohio) asked Wray to explain why his agency had wiretapped and gathered personal information on over 3.3 million Americans without a warrant. Limited authority to gather foreign intelligence information is granted by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). Specifically, section 702 of the bill says: “the Attorney General (AG) and the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) may jointly authorize the targeting of (i) non-U.S. persons (ii) who are reasonably believed to be outside of the United States (iii) to acquire foreign intelligence information.”

However, this power can grant an expanding circle of possible searches to the FBI and other intel agencies, who can use the same power against American citizens who had any interaction with targeted foreigners. Historically, insight into how FISA has been used against American citizens has been limited and hidden behind classified reports. However, a November 2020 decision by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC)—which serves as a watchdog for U.S. intelligence agencies—required that the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) report “the number of U.S. person queries run by the FBI against Section 702-acquired information.”

In accordance with these new requirements, ODNI’s recently-released Annual Statistical Transparency Report included data on how often the FBI gathered information on American citizens using section 702 in 2021. In total, queries against U.S. citizens came out to a jaw-dropping 3,394,053 searches. By comparison, only 1,324,057 such queries were made in 2020, representing around a 250 percent increase during President Joe Biden’s first year in office. According to ODNI more than half of these queries—approximately 1.9 million—were part of the larger investigation of alleged Russian attempts to target or weaken U.S. critical infrastructure. The ODNI report also admitted that on at least four occasions, the FBI failed to get FISC approval before accessing the contents of information collected under section 702.

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“Did you guys open a case? Reach out and put tools on?”

Comey et al Were “Fired Up” to Pursue the False Alfa Bank Claims (Turley)

The Sussmann trial yesterday had another surprising disclosure when an agent revealed that FBI leadership, including then-Director James Comey, was “fired up” about the alleged secret communications channel between the Trump Organization and Russia’s Alfa Bank. The question is why Comey and others were so reportedly eager given the lack of foundation for the false claim — a record that even the researchers told the Clinton campaign could be mocked as utterly unsupported. Yet, as with the Steele dossier claims (funded and spread by the Clinton campaign) there was a strikingly receptive audience for such claims at the top of the FBI.

The new disclosure came with the testimony of the supervisory agent for the FBI’s Trump-Russia probe (“Crossfire Hurricane”) Joe Pientka. He sent a note to FBI Special Agent Curtis Heide that stated “People on the 7th floor to include Director are fired up about this server,” Pientka messaged Heide. “Did you guys open a case? Reach out and put tools on?” The description of the eagerness of Comey and others only magnified concerns over the alleged bias or the predisposition of the agency on the investigation of Trump and his campaign. It is particularly striking in an allegation that was viewed as unsupported even by the researchers and quickly dismissed by the government as baseless.

According to Durham, the Alfa Bank allegation fell apart even before Sussmann delivered it to the FBI. The indictment details how an unnamed “tech executive” allegedly used his authority at multiple internet companies to help develop the ridiculous claim. (The executive reportedly later claimed that he was promised a top cyber security job in the Clinton administration). Notably, there were many who expressed misgivings not only within the companies working on the secret project but also among unnamed “university researchers” who repeatedly said the argument was bogus. The researchers were told they should not be looking for proof but just enough to “give the base of a very useful narrative.”

The researchers argued, according to the indictment, that anyone familiar with analyzing internet traffic “would poke several holes” in that narrative, noting that what they saw likely “was not a secret communications channel with Russian Bank-1, but ‘a red herring,’” according to the indictment. “Researcher-1” repeated these doubts, the indictment says, and asked, “How do we plan to defend against the criticism that this is not spoofed traffic we are observing? There is no answer to that. Let’s assume again that they are not smart enough to refute our ‘best case scenario.’ You do realize that we will have to expose every trick we have in our bag to even make a very weak association.” The alleged response from Comey and the FBI leadership would seem to confirm the view of campaign associates that they only needed a “useful narrative” to achieve their purposes. It only took an unsupported, implausible theory to get Comey and his top aides “fired up.”

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“This decision will kill a small but non-trivial number of kids, in exchange for nothing whatsoever.”

German Regulators Recommend mRNA Vaccination for Young Children (Eugyp)

Germany’s vaccine regulatory body, STIKO, has finally recommended mRNA vaccination for healthy children aged 5 to 11. Somewhat unusually, they’re calling for a single dose only, rather than the normally scheduled two, reasoning that the vast majority of young children have already been infected. As is usual, the vaccinators want us to keep vaccinating to head off imagined future events, and no longer to remedy any concrete problem in the present: “The new recommendation is a “precaution against coming as-yet-unknown waves of infections”, explained paediatrician and STIKO member Martin Terhardt … Reinhard Berner, director of the paediatric clinic at Dresden University Hospital, also a member of STIKO, put it this way: “We dare to look into the future, and we want to prepare children for a third Corona winter, so that they come through this time as safely as possible.”


I write this in the midst of conference hell, and I’m too tired and angry to say anything clever about it. It’s just an entirely predictable and totally dumb decision by a bunch of crazy unaccountable regulators. Healthy children with no exposure are at less risk of severe outcome from SARS-2 infection than they are from influenza. Healthy children who have already had Corona stand to gain precisely zero from the miracle mRNA elixir. This decision will kill a small but non-trivial number of kids, in exchange for nothing whatsoever. It will not reduce the circulation of SARS-2, it won’t save Oma’s life, it will do nothing.

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“..poses absolutely zero threat to human civilization generally..”

Monkeypoxmania (CJ Hopkins)

Lock yourselves down inside your homes! Break out the masks and prophylactic face-shields! Switch off what’s left of your critical faculties and prepare yourselves to “follow the Science!” Yes, that’s right, just as the survivors of The Simulated Apocalyptic Plague of 2020-2021 were crawling up out of their Covid bunkers and starting to “build the world back better,” another biblical pestilence has apparently been unleashed on humanity! This time it’s the dreaded monkeypox, a viral zoonotic disease endemic to central and western Africa that circulates among giant pouched rats, squirrels, dormice, and other rodents and has been infecting humans for centuries, or millennia. Monkeypox causes fever, headaches, muscle aches, and sometimes fluid-filled blisters, tends to resolve in two to four weeks, and thus poses absolutely zero threat to human civilization generally.

The corporate media do not want to alarm us, but it is their duty as professional journalists to report that THE MONKEYPOX IS SPREADING LIKE WILDFIRE! OVER 100 CASES OF MONKEYPOX have been confirmed in countries throughout the world! MONKEYPOX TASKFORCES are being convened! Close-up photos of NASTY-LOOKING MONKEYPOX LESIONS are being disseminated! The President of the United States says “EVERYBODY SHOULD BE CONCERNED!” The WHO is calling it “a multi-country monkeypox outbreak!” Belgium has introduced a mandatory quarantine. The CDC has gone to “Alert Level 2!” “Enhanced precautions” are recommended!

In New York City, the nexus of probably the most paranoid, mask-wearing, quadruple-“vaccinated” New Normal fanatics on the face of the planet, the Department of Health is instructing everyone to wear the masks they are already wearing to protect them from both Covid and monkeypox, and smallpox, and largepox, and airborne cancer, and God knows what other horrors might be out there! Here in the capital of New Normal Germany, Karl Lauterbach, who, despite wasting hundreds of millions of Euros on superfluous “vaccines,” attempting to compulsorily “vaccinate” every man, woman, and child in the country, and otherwise behaving like a fascist lunatic, remains the official Minister of Health, is excitedly hopping up and down and hooting like a Siamang gibbon about “recommendations for isolation and quarantine,” and other “monkeypox containment measures.”

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JFK Man on the moon

 

 

 

 

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May 242022
 
 May 24, 2022  Posted by at 8:27 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  64 Responses »


Giovanni Bellini Pietà 1474

 

We’re in It Now for Sure (Kunstler)
False Russia Collusion Story Began And Ended With Hillary Clinton (JTN)
FBI Alfa-Bank Inquiry Based On DOJ ‘Referral’ That Came From Sussmann (WE)
Durham Puts FBI Investigators On Stand (JTN)
What It Means That Hillary Clinton Did It (AT)
A Major National Embarrassment Is Being Hidden From Ukrainians (Storozhenko)
UK Backs Lithuania’s Plan To Lift Russian Blockade Of Ukraine Grain (G.)
A Breakdown Of The Ukraine Aid Bill (Semler)
In Davos, Ukrainians Host “Russian War Crimes House” (Y!)
Republicans Will Target ‘Public Health Bureaucrats’ When In Majority (JTN)
Pfizer Moves to Dismiss Lawsuit From COVID-19 Vaccine Trial (ET)
Supermarkets Could Soon Urge You Not To Use Cash Or Card To Pay (MEN)
Albanese Squandering Leverage on Assange (Lauria)

 

 

 

 

Tulsi
https://twitter.com/i/status/1528687472359575552

 

 

 

 

Build Back Amish.

We’re in It Now for Sure (Kunstler)

Lately, a new derangement is overtaking Western Civ, for the excellent reason that Western Civ gave birth to techno industrial societies and is now first to undergo the alarming demise of that system. I speak of the World Economic Forum (under one Klaus Schwab) and its stated ambition to Build Back Better — based on its unstated premise that the current system must be nudged to its death sooner rather than later, and on-purpose. All the governments of Western Civ nations seem coordinated on this. But it’s not going to happen as Mr. Schwab and his followers hoped, for at least a couple of reasons. First, as already stated, God is a prankster and likes to throw knuckleballs at the human race.

Anyway, the “better” that Mr. Schwab expects is an ultra-techno-industrial “trans-human” scheme that is unlikely to come about if the support system of the older techno-industrial system is no longer available to support it. As currently conceived, BBB depends on electric power, and that is one of the major sub-systems of our system that already looks like it’s going janky. You get the idea, I’m sure, so I’ll cut to the chase for now. About a year ago I had my French easel set up on a country road nearby and was busy painting a motif at-hand when along came a horse-drawn wagon filled with four men in severe black-and-white clothing, wearing beards.

They were apparently a bit surprised by the strange sight of me painting a picture and they stopped to chat. They were Amish and had lately moved to the county from down in Pennsylvania, which was running out of farmland for their fruitful people. Not a half-hour later a second horse-drawn wagon passed by. I admit, the incident gave me a thrill — not just the sensory pleasure of the horses’ ripe animal smell, and the gentle rhythm of their clip-clopping along. But since I had lately been writing a bunch of novels about life in a post-economic collapse town like my own (the World Made by Hand series), I enjoyed the strange delight of being transported briefly into a scene of my own imagining — the prequel of my own books.

Many more Amish are landing in the county these days. I hear they go around to the failing or inactive farms with bundles of cash and make an offer, just like that. Evidently the method works. It’s given me a business idea: to start an Amish skills school, buy a few acres with a barn and hire some Amish men to teach all us non-Amish how to do a few things that might be good to know in the years ahead, like how to harness horses to a cart or a mule to a plow. (The Amish like to make a bit of cash-money when they can.) That’s my idea of how to build back better. What do you think?

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Put Obama on the stand as well.

False Russia Collusion Story Began And Ended With Hillary Clinton (JTN)

In an era where the hunt for disinformation has become a political obsession, Hillary Clinton has mostly escaped having to answer what role she played in spreading the false Russia collusion narrative that gripped America for nearly three years. On Friday, that dodge ended with a most unlikely witness: her former campaign manager Robby Mook, who was supposed to be a witness helping the defense of her former campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann on a charge of lying to the FBI. Instead, under cross-examination by Special Counsel John Durham’s team, Mook was forced to concede two extraordinary facts. First, the Clinton campaign wasn’t “totally confident” about the accuracy of computer data suggesting Donald Trump had a secret communications channel to the Kremlin via Russia’s Alfa Bank.

And second, Hillary Clinton herself personally approved spreading the story to the news media, despite the concerns about its accuracy. “I discussed it with Hillary as well,” Mook testified. “I don’t remember the substance of the conversation, but notionally, the discussion was, hey, we have this and we want to share it with a reporter,” Mook said. Prosecutors asked Mook if Clinton approved leaking the story to the media. “She agreed,” Mook testified. The testimony confirms what CIA Director John Brennan told President Barack Obama secretly in July 2016 and what the CIA later told the FBI two months later: There was intelligence that Clinton had approved a plan to dirty up Trump with Russia allegations to distract from her own email server scandal.

Kevin Brock, the FBI’s former assistant director for intelligence, called Mook’s revelation a “startling piece of testimony, particularly since he was a defense witness.” “On the surface it looks like a major victory for John Durham,” Brock said. “Don’t forget he’s trying to paint an overall picture here. Sussmann is just one pixel on that photo. “The trial is the vehicle that Durham is using to help bring out the truth, to tell a story of a political campaign that in two instances pursued information that was totally fabricated or at least misinterpreted with the Alfa Bank connection to Trump and use that disinformation to mislead the American voter,” he added.

Slowly over six years, the Russia collusion story has been exposed for what it was: a three-legged political dirty trick in which highly credible figures with deep law enforcement, intelligence and news media ties were paid by the Clinton campaign to flood the FBI, the CIA and the public with unproven allegations that Trump was secretly colluding with Russia to steal the election from Clinton.

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Who investigates the FBI?

FBI Alfa-Bank Inquiry Based On DOJ ‘Referral’ That Came From Sussmann (WE)

The FBI opened a full-fledged counterintelligence investigation into since-debunked Trump-Russia collusion claims just four days after Michael Sussmann pushed the allegations to the bureau. The electronic communication marking the opening of the investigation cited a “referral” from the Justice Department rather than saying the Alfa-Bank allegations came from a lawyer for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign. The opening communication, titled “Alfa Bank,” was authored by FBI agents Curtis Heide and Allison Sands, both of whom may testify this week, and the investigation initiated on Sept. 23, 2016, four days after Sussmann’s meeting with FBI General Counsel James Baker.

Sussmann was indicted in September for allegedly concealing his clients — Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign and “Tech Executive-1,” former Neustar executive Rodney Joffe — from Baker when he pushed since-debunked claims of a secret back channel between the Trump Organization and Russia’s Alfa-Bank. Sussmann has pleaded not guilty. Sussmann had worked at the Justice Department in the past, and testimony from Baker last week stated that he had a badge that allowed him access to the FBI. The case identification was “Alfa Bank, Russia — Contacts / Agents, Sensitive Investigative Matter,” and the opening document said it “documents the opening of a Full Field Investigation into the network communications between a U.S.-based server and the Russian ALFA BANK organization.” Enclosed was a “White Paper.”

“On or about September 19, 2016, FBI received a referral of information from the U.S. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE, detailing an unusually configured email server in Pennsylvania belonging to the TRUMP ORGANIZATION,” the FBI wrote in September 2016. “In that referral, the DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE provided the FBI with a white paper that was produced by an anonymous third party. According to the white paper, a U.S.-based server that is owned by the TRUMP ORGANIZATION has been communicating with the Russian-based ALFA BANK organization in Moscow, Russia.”

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Trying to cover their asses.

Durham Puts FBI Investigators On Stand (JTN)

In the trial of former Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann, prosecutors on Monday called two FBI witnesses who testified that clarity regarding the source of allegations of a secret hotline between the Trump Organization and Russia’s Alfa Bank would have influenced the bureau’s investigative approach to the now-debunked collusion allegations. Special Counsel John Durham alleges Sussmann lied to former FBI General Counsel James Baker in September 2016 when he said he was not representing any clients as he fed the bureau information purportedly revealing a Trump Organization backchannel to Moscow through Russia’s Alfa Bank. At the time, Sussmann was a partner at the Perkins Coie law firm and representing the Democratic National Committee and a tech company executive, according to the prosecution.

Sussmann has pleaded not guilty to the charge of making a false statement to the FBI. As part of its effort to substantiate the materiality of Sussmann’s alleged lie to the FBI, the prosecution brought FBI agent Ryan Gaynor and former FBI agent Allison Sands to the witness stand on Monday. Both were involved in the investigation into the Alfa Bank allegation Gaynor testified that had he known Sussmann was representing the DNC, he likely would not have volunteered to assist in the investigation. He also said that if Sussmann was paid by the DNC or the Clinton campaign, it might have impacted how the investigation was opened and the close-hold he says was placed on Sussmann’s identity, which prevented him from being able to discuss it with the Chicago branch.

Sands testified that she was informed the investigation began with a referral of information from the Department of Justice. Only later did she find out that the information actually came from then-FBI General Counsel James Baker. After that, she eventually learned that an anonymous third party gave Baker the data. Sands said that knowing the source of the information would have helped her assess its credibility. Sands explained that believing the information came from the DOJ gave it more weight than if someone just walked into the FBI with the data. She said that if the information hadn’t come through the Justice Department, then she didn’t know if it would have triggered a full investigation.

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“..the Clinton-Obama attempted takeover of the government. (Call it the COAT campaign.)”

What It Means That Hillary Clinton Did It (AT)

[..] the Journal explained how the Clinton campaign used the self-generated news of the investigation and the initial Slate article that came of it, both of which they had planted, as the basis for making tweet after tweet to the press about the Slate report to churn up mass coverage about it in the press and convince the public that the investigation was about something serious.

The concluding paragraphs of the editorial are worth quoting in full: “In short, the Clinton campaign created the Trump-Alfa allegation, fed it to a credulous press that failed to confirm the allegations but ran with them anyway, then promoted the story as if it was legitimate news. The campaign also delivered the claims to the FBI, giving journalists another excuse to portray the accusations as serious and perhaps true. Most of the press will ignore this news, but the Russia-Trump narrative that Mrs. Clinton sanctioned did enormous harm to the country. It disgraced the FBI, humiliated the press, and sent the country on a three-year investigation to nowhere. Vladimir Putin never came close to doing as much disinformation damage.”

The harm done to the United States by the perfidy of the Clintonistas cannot be overemphasized. That “three-year investigation to nowhere” represented the Clinton-Obama attempted takeover of the government. (Call it the COAT campaign.) With congressional Republicans unwilling to prevent the COAT campaign, the Trump administration was blocked from putting U.S.-Russia relations on a rational, mutually beneficial footing, to the point that, under the present Senate leadership, the specter of war with Russia is no longer an unthinkable thought. The COAT campaign succeeded in keeping the Ukraine pot boiling, with the water first heated by Obama’s stirring up of anti-Russian feelings in Ukraine, leading to the Maidan revolution that ousted the legitimately elected president of Ukraine, Viktor Yanukovych.

A political opposition ready to lie about Donald J. Trump, supported by a media prepared to believe the worst about Mr. Trump has given us the current reality where the deep state is using NATO as an instrument to humiliate Russia, and Republican leaders in Congress are going along with the plans of the deep state to make the globe an unsafe place except for the globalist hegemony. Most of the press will indeed ignore disclosure of the source of the baseless accusations of Trump-Russia collusion — it is no accident that the New York Times ignored the Mook testimony in its May 20 editions. It is, moreover, unlikely that the press will be humiliated by its mendacious coverage of Hillary Clinton; the media, on the contrary, wears its mendacious coverage of Clinton and the anti-Trump neo-totalitarians as deserving of journalistic honors.

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“Not an evacuation, not an exit, not an “extraction”, but captivity.”

A Major National Embarrassment Is Being Hidden From Ukrainians (Storozhenko)

The myth of heroic 82 day defense is already actively promoted by Ukrainian media, even though since late March that defense consisted largely of Azovite efforts to break out of the trap. First on helicopters, then with the help of Macron and Erdogan. And recently they’ve tried to involve everyone who came to mind: Israel, UN, Doctors Without Borders, the Pope, and Elon Musk. In the end, on May 16 and 17 we saw what we were fated to see. Some of the Azovites and AFU soldiers came out of Azov Steel underground, existed using the corridor specified by Russia’s military, were searched and sorted (the wounded to hospitals, the rest to filtration points) and…went into captivity.

Not an evacuation, not an exit, not an “extraction”, but captivity. A simple Russian word, though not a merry one. But that’s what we saw. The Ukrainian viewer saw and was told something entirely different. The Ukrainian language also contains a word for captivity. But Ukrainian media try to avoid it at all costs. Azov’s commander was actually the first. Already on the evening of May 16, as if anticipating questions, he said he’s implementing a decision by top military authorities. OK, but what decision? We know, but Ukrainians viewing his statement in a Telegram channel could not understand a thing and said as much. Then came Zelensky. He mentioned the AFU, UN, ICRC, and at the end: “…soldiers were transported to occupied territory for future exchange.”

Who did the transporting? Not a word about that. But instead we learned this is called an “operation to preserve the lives of Azov Steel defenders.” Russians think they took someone prisoner. But in reality there’s an ongoing military operation, so stop panicking. And it’s not just any operation. No, it’s an operation by Ukraine’s military intelligence (that’s how it was officially reported)! These announcements were picked up by not only Kiev-controlled media but also the most authoritative (well, until recently) world media platforms, including CNN. They also don’t use the word “captivity”, only “evacuation”!

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The craziest plan to date.

UK Backs Lithuania’s Plan To Lift Russian Blockade Of Ukraine Grain (G.)

Britain has backed in principle a proposal by Lithuania for a naval coalition “of the willing” to lift the Russian Black Sea blockade on Ukrainian grain exports. The Lithuanian foreign minister, Gabrielius Landsbergis, proposed the plan during talks with the UK foreign secretary, Liz Truss, on Monday in London. “Time is very very short. We are closing in on a new harvest and there is no other practical way of exporting the grain except through the Black Sea port of Odesa,” he told the Guardian. “There is no way of storing this grain and no other adequate alternative route. It is imperative that we show vulnerable countries we are prepared to take the steps that are needed to feed the world.”

Landsbergis proposed that a naval escort operation – not run by Nato – could protect the grain ships as they headed through the Black Sea and past Russian warships. He suggested that, apart from Britain, countries that were affected by the potential loss of grain such as Egypt could provide the necessary protection. “What we have seen now is just the beginning. The worst is yet to come in the next five to seven weeks when the first harvest arrives and there is no place to put it, so that means people in northern Africa, the Middle East and south-east Asia will be paying exorbitant prices for wheat, corn and the other commodities they need to put food on their table”. He said Ukraine needed to export 80m tonnes of wheat alone this year and the only option was through Odesa,.

His plan, under gestation for weeks, would require demining parts of the Black Sea to ensure safe passage, as well as the agreement of Turkey, which guards the entrance to the Black Sea. “This would be a non-military humanitarian mission and is not comparable with a no-fly zone,” he said. “In this endeavour military ships or planes or both would be used to ensure that the grain supplies can leave Odesa safely and reach the Bosphorus without Russian interference. We would need a coalition of the willing – countries with significant naval power to protect the shipping lanes, and countries that are affected by this”.

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More such bills will follow.

A Breakdown Of The Ukraine Aid Bill (Semler)

Joe Biden signed a bill over the weekend that provides $40.1 billion in emergency funding for Ukraine. The Senate passed it on Thursday and the House had passed the thing the week before. It was a bit touch and go in the Senate following an objection by Rand Paul (R-KY), but all told the legislation practically flew through Congress, at least by Washington’s standards: Biden submitted the funding request to Congress on April 28 and it was sent back to his desk just three weeks later. Based on the bill text, I counted $40.1 billion worth of provisions; $24.6 billion for military programs and $15.5 billion for non-military ones.

Not all of the funding provisions are for aid. The money for for the Department of Treasury and Department of Justice to seize and track Russian assets aren’t, for example, and neither are a portion of the funding for the Pentagon to develop and procure weapons. Moreover, a good bit of the included appropriations covers the operating expenses and overhead of US agencies implementing the aid and not for the aid itself, like for the deployment and hazard pay of US troops to eastern Europe or extra operating expenses for USAID. Of the provisions that are unmistakably for military and non-military aid, it’s tough to say how much will end going to Ukraine, for two reasons. First, there’s a “…and other countries” suffix following most of the major economic, humanitarian, and military assistance provisions.

Second, the bill raises the legal limit on existing authorities that allow the executive branch to authorize additional aid transfers, which could raise the top line amount given to Ukraine (and/or other countries). I estimate that for-profit military contractors will derive about $17.3 billion in revenue from the bill, which exceeds the total amount of non-military aid included in the legislation ($15.5 billion). This doesn’t mean that the money going to military contractors isn’t going to Ukraine. It’s just that giving military aid to Ukraine (or wherever) means giving money to military contractors. The funds given to the Pentagon by Congress through the bill are generally to provide Ukraine either with goods (weapons, equipment) or services (logistical support, intelligence, training). Military contractors get paid by the Pentagon for both, to varying extents.

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Welcome to the WEF.

In Davos, Ukrainians Host “Russian War Crimes House” (Y!)

With Russians banned from Davos, their den in the Swiss mountain resort was taken over by Ukraine and given a new name: “Russian War Crimes House”. The “Russia House” was traditionally used by Russians to hold events and network during the annual World Economic Forum in the Swiss Alps. But organisers excluded them from the meeting of the world’s business and political elite following Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine. Instead of a place to entertain, the house with red shutters on Davos’ main street is now used by Ukrainians to display the atrocities the say Russia is committing. It features photos of cemeteries, people in body bags, a bloodied hand on a pavement, a child in a respirators in a hospital, a baby in a soldier’s arms, buildings in ruins.

Ukrainians are using the building to hold several events during the four-day Davos summit as part of efforts to win more support against Russia, three months after the invasion began. “If we tell the story of this tragedy as wide as possible, maybe it will save some lives,” said Ukrainian oligarch Viktor Pinchuk, whose foundation is among the organisers of the event. After the presentation at the “House of Russian War Crimes”, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenksy used the WEF congress to plead for more weapons for his country, and more sanctions against Russia. A parade of Ukrainian lawmakers and officials attended other events on the summit’s first day to hammer home the need for weapons and sanctions to defeat Russia.

At the “Russian War Crimes House”, the goal is to bring attention to the alleged atrocities committed by Russia. Next to the photos, an entire wall is covered by a map that lists the “war crimes” committed by Russia. On top, a toll as of May 6: 4,177 civilians killed, including 226 children, and 4,378 wounded, including 417 children.

WEF

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Promises promises.

Republicans Will Target ‘Public Health Bureaucrats’ When In Majority (JTN)

Republicans plan on holding public health bureaucrats such as Dr. Anthony Fauci accountable after the 2022 midterm elections, according to a Republican Study Committee (RSC) memo on Monday from Chairman Jim Banks (R-Ind.). While many of the left’s COVID-19 policies “went unchallenged… public health authorities soon started issuing nonsensical, contradictory directives and embracing partisan rhetoric,” according to the memo. “If Congress fails to hold the Fauci clique accountable, and fails to reform public health agencies, we will be giving far-left bureaucrats a blank check to shut the country down whenever they want,” Banks said. “We need to send a message that the restrictions, the mandates and the school closures can never happen again.”


Republicans are likely to take back the House and gain what Banks has claimed will be a “historic majority.” As the RSC is the largest ideological congressional caucus, Banks’ memo may be a preview into GOP actions after midterms. “Holding partisan public health bureaucrats accountable should be a major oversight priority for House Republicans after 2022,” he wrote in the 4-page RSC memo. “Leftists have abused Americans’ willingness to make sacrifices for public health. They have sought to define everything from racism to policing to gun rights to the minimum wage as public health issues,” he noted. Republicans plan on reigning in the CDC’s “mission creep” by refocusing the agency on emergency public health response and requiring it to “be transparent,” among other things. The GOP will also consider restoring the basic science mission at the National Institutes of Health, which oversees Dr. Fauci and his National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases department.

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Laws do not apply to Pfizer.

Pfizer Moves to Dismiss Lawsuit From COVID-19 Vaccine Trial (ET)

Pfizer has asked a U.S. court to throw out a lawsuit from a whistleblower who revealed problems at sites that tested Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine. Brook Jackson, the whistleblower, alleged in a suit that was unsealed in February that Pfizer and associated parties violated clinical trial regulations and federal laws, including the False Claims Act. In its motion to dismiss, Pfizer says the regulations don’t apply to its vaccine contract with the U.S. Department of Defense because the agreement was executed under the department’s Other Transaction Authority (OTA), which gives contract holders the ability to skirt many rules and laws that typically apply to contracts. That means that Jackson’s claim that Pfizer must still comply with the Federal Acquisition Regulations “is simply wrong,” Pfizer said.

Warner Mendenhall, a lawyer who is working on Jackson’s case, said in a recent interview that Pfizer has “clearly not followed federal procurement laws.” “And now they’re saying, ‘of course we didn’t follow federal procurement laws, we didn’t have to—this was just for a prototype,’” he added. Mendenhall, who declined an interview request, said lawyers for Jackson are working on figuring out legal ways to counter Pfizer’s argument. “We may lose on this issue because their contract imposes … none of the normal checks and balances on quality control and consumer protection that we fought for decades in this country,” he said. [..] The government agreed to pay up to $1.9 billion for 100 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine pending U.S. regulatory clearance.

That included the manufacturing of the vaccine on top of researching and developing it. The contract was granted under the “prototype” provision, which falls under the OTA. The rules for prototypes state that just one of four conditions must be satisfied. The condition that was satisfied in the Pfizer contract was the involvement of a “nontraditional defense contractor.” Federal law defines nontraditional defense contractors as “an entity that is not currently performing and has not performed” a contract or subcontract for the Department of Defense for at least one year preceding the solicitation of the OTA agreement. Pfizer has dozens of contracts with the military.

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How to cancel people completely.

Supermarkets Could Soon Urge You Not To Use Cash Or Card To Pay (MEN)

Supermarket giants across the UK could soon ask shoppers to ditch cash and card payments, and instead use their face or fingerprints at the checkout. A trial is in place to increase shopper security at the tills, though some may see it as a step closer to a cashless society. Mastercard is trialling a biometric payment system that could see customers just use their face rather than contactless cards, smartphones or PINs. Shoppers would be able to smile or wave a hand at a scanner to pay for their shopping. It is understood that a customer would be able to scan their face or fingerprint using a supermarket’s smartphone app and link their likeness to a bank card. Payments Card and Mobile website says it would work in a similar way to Apple’s facial ID.

The Telegraph reports how Mastercard, the payments company, wants to roll the programme out worldwide for small and large retailers. Ajay Bhalla, the president of cyber and intelligence at Mastercard, was quoted in the Telegraph as saying: “The way we pay needs to keep pace with the way we live, work and do business, offering choice to consumers with the highest levels of security. Our goal with this new programme is to make shopping a great experience for consumers and merchants alike, providing the best of both security and convenience.” A pilot programme is currently under way in Brazil at five St Marche supermarkets in Sao Paolo. More trials are also planned for Asia and the Middle East.

The biometric facial recognition software would lead to shorter queues, be more hygienic than tapping in a pin, and less vulnerable to fraud linked to credit and debit cards, Mastercard said. It said: “No more fumbling for your phone or hunting for your wallet when you have your hands full – the next generation of in-person payments will only need a quick smile or wave of your hand. The trusted technology that uses your face or fingerprint to unlock your phone can now be used to help consumers speed through the checkout. With Mastercard’s new Biometric Checkout Programme, all you will need is yourself.”

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A vassal state.

Albanese Squandering Leverage on Assange (Lauria)

Anthony Albanese, the newly-elected Australian prime minister, has what might be the best opportunity he will ever have to exchange Julian Assange’s freedom for Australia’s continued cooperation with U.S. aims in the Pacific region. Albanese is set to have his first bilateral meeting on Tuesday with U.S. President Joe Biden after a Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (Quad) summit in Tokyo, when the leaders of the four nations — Australia, India, Japan and the U.S. — meet to discuss relations with China. But in remarks made on Monday before he even left for Japan, Albanese already said his Labor government is fully on board with the Quad’s agenda, as the previous government of Scott Morrison had been. Perhaps more importantly, Albanese said Australia would sign on to Biden’s just announced creation of a new, 13-nation Asian economic bloc aimed at opposing China’s economic dominance in the region, according to reports in The Australian and The Sydney Morning Herald.

Biden had only just announced the new bloc on Monday. Even before he was sworn in, Albanese apparently told Biden about Australia joining the bloc during a telephone conversation they had on Sunday as Biden flew to Japan. Albanese was quoted in The Australian as saying that “he would ‘send a message to the world that there’s a new government in Australia’, while reassuring partners there would be “continuity in the way that we have respect for democracy and the way that we value our friendships and long time alliances.” Albanese also spoke with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson. The Herald reported:

“Albanese spoke to UK counterpart Boris Johnson while flying to Tokyo on Monday. A spokesman described the conversation as friendly and positive. The discussion with Johnson included a commitment from Albanese to support the AUKUS alliance on nuclear submarines and talks on climate change.” Apparently asking for nothing in return, Albanese gave away the store to Biden and Johnson, not even raising Assange’s name, according to these reports. He had the leverage of asking Biden to drop the case and Johnson to block the extradition in exchange for continuity from the Morrison government on AUKUS, the Quad, and on joining Biden’s new economic bloc. Of course, not everything discussed between the leaders was reported. There remains an outside chance Albanese did raise Assange. But there has been no movement on Assange after Albanese gave Biden and Johnson what they wanted.

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May 212022
 
 May 21, 2022  Posted by at 8:54 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  34 Responses »


Rembrandt van Rijn The deposition 1632-33

 

Biden’s America Rots from the Head Down (J.B. Shurk)
The Swamp Must Be Drained (Conrad Black)
Elon Musk: There Will Be Blood (CTH)
Robby Mook Testifies Hillary Directed Campaign to Push Russiagate (CTH)
Theories Exist to Be Proven (Jim Kunstler)
Monkeypox Was a Table-Top Simulation Only Last Year (Senger)
Monkeypox Fears May Rescue Endangered Corporations (Whitney Webb)
Briefing by Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova, May 18, 2022 (Saker)
So How Serious Is Ukraine’s Neo-Nazi Romance? (Chung)
Yes, The Ukraine War Could Have Been Prevented (Maple)
Russia Will Shut Off Gas To Finland From Saturday (CNBC)
Ruble Hits 7-Year High As Gas Buyers Bow To Putin’s Payment Mandate (ZH)

 

 

 

 

I put all my genius into my life; I put only my talent into my works.
– Oscar Wilde

 

 

 

 

Vaccine injured

 

 

“..a mottled, tattered soul that would turn the stomachs of the devil’s most sulfurous henchmen..”

Biden’s America Rots from the Head Down (J.B. Shurk)

Perhaps no head of state before Joe Biden has so completely personified the maritime proverb that the fish rots from the head down. In both deed and physical decay, he is that putrefying rancidness wafting from where offal is tossed near the dock whose ability to trigger the gag reflexes of unsuspecting travelers seems the perfect metaphor for this nauseating moment in American history. Not only is Joe’s walking corpse a fitting symbol for a country that has never looked more debilitated, but the reality (ignored by the State’s slavishly devoted press corps) that his cognitive acuity is plummeting so fast that terminal velocity was reached long ago drives the point home that the head of our head of state is rotting, too.

When Biden’s handlers sent him to Buffalo, New York, to exploit a mass murder by blaming conservatives, liberty-lovers, Trump Republicans, Fox News, and just about anybody to the right of Karl Marx for a crime whose perpetrator didn’t even merit the faux-president’s direct condemnation, angry, spiteful Joe Biden showed just what a miserable, acidic, revolting excuse for a human being he’s always been. A real president would have mourned the dead, comforted the survivors, consoled the grieving, and united Americans through the common bonds of their humanity. But Joe Biden is no real president, so he both dishonored the solemnity of the occasion and betrayed his sacred duty to elevate the nation’s welfare over the interests of his party’s political power. With an outstretched, bony finger good for nothing now but casting blame, he tarnished the tragedy with petty partisanship, rebuffed the nation’s need for grace, befouled what should have been dignified, and withered further the civic sinews barely binding Americans together as one nation. Biden’s moment in Buffalo was disgraceful.


I know Republicans such as Mitch McConnell and Lindsey Graham love to tell stories about how charming and friendly the Great Mental Void from Delaware has always been, but you can’t spew such filthy, spiteful rhetoric as Biden did in Buffalo without having a dark and rotten soul. This is who Joe Biden has been all his wretched life. When he wasn’t stealing other people’s words for his own use or orchestrating Justice Thomas’s “high-tech lynching,” he was running around the country telling black Americans that Republicans wanted to “put y’all back in chains,” scaring elderly Americans that Obamacare opponents wanted to destroy their Medicare, or straight-up lying about the authenticity of his son’s “laptop from hell.” You don’t have to watch that old lecherous canker fondle children or impose on women’s personal space to know that Joe Biden has a mottled, tattered soul that would turn the stomachs of the devil’s most sulfurous henchmen.

Eagle is wandering
https://twitter.com/i/status/1527786826550890498

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Elon.

The Swamp Must Be Drained (Conrad Black)

The Democrats are increasingly desperate as the return of Donald Trump becomes more likely each week. They are muddling the sequence of events that got us to the present impasse: Trump ran against the corrupt back-scratching, log-rolling society of the OBushintons—the Clinton pay-to-play schemes, the Biden sales of influence and access, the semi-disguised socialist racism elitism of the Obamas, and the flabby sameness and ineffectuality of the Bush–McCain–Romney–McConnell–Ryan Republicans. Trump sensed the people were dissatisfied with the bipartisan Swamp, and he ran as strenuously against the Bushes and McCain and Romney in 2016 as he did against the Clintons and Obamas.

The anti-Trumpers of both parties, in the most legally questionable presidential election in U.S. history, eased Trump out in 2020 with the aid of 4.8 million harvested ballots, 95 percent of the national political media, and 70 percent of the campaign money, to bring in (unintentionally, one assumes, although there was plenty of warning) the most incompetent regime in the country’s history. In 2020, the Washington establishment demonstrated the accuracy of Trump’s claims of how corrupt and unscrupulous it was, and Biden has demonstrated that it’s even more incompetent at government than Trump alleged. The Swamp must be drained, and distasteful though he might be in some ways, probably no one less formidable in his egocentricity and demagogic talents than Trump could drain the Swamp.

The Republicans between Reagan and Trump were all inducted into it themselves, and the Republican “Never-Trumpers” are as fierce in their animosity toward the former president as toward the Democrats, and as the Democrats are toward Trump. Only Trump can finish the job. This is why the latest anti-Trump wheeze is to send Biden and Trump out to pasture together, as if it were an even trade: The Democrats get rid of their two biggest problems, and the Republicans return to being doormats, awarded the White House and the speaker’s chair at times as long as they don’t interrupt the majestic slide into the Democratic socialist paradise (with a permanent free tax-lunch for their rich friends in Wall Street, Silicon Valley, and Hollywood). Biden is irrelevant and Trump has the stamina of a 40-year-old; the call for joint retirement is bunk on all counts.

[..] The Democrats hid their innocuous candidate in 2020 in his basement on grounds of COVID-19, while using the same justification for drastic changes in key states of voting and vote-counting rules, changes that were often effected illegally, and the judiciary abdicated and refused to judge any of the serious complaints on their merits. It was the most dangerously illegal assault on the integrity of the election process and on the constitutional balance of powers in the country’s history. The problem is not that both 2020 candidates are now too elderly. The problem is that 2020 and the run-up to it demonstrated that the Swamp is as venal and self-interested and corrupt as Trump said in 2016, and they are back.

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“..swinging the social control pendulum away from the government..”

Elon Musk: There Will Be Blood (CTH)

In a series of tweets today, Elon Musk, the Tesla/SpaceX CEO, world’s richest man and tech billionaire who recently announced he is voting republican, announced his intent to set up what he calls a “hardcore litigation department” filled with “hardcore streetfighters” because “there will be blood”:

This announcement is bookended by Elon Musk’s deal to purchase the Twitter social media platform, a resistant internal company ideological adversary, and a warning from the political left with Business Insider publishing an alleged sexual misconduct story. Indeed, it does appear that Elon Musk is preparing for a war that will likely include the Fourth Branch of Government as an adversary. Additionally, Elon Musk is drawing attention to the corruption in the 2016 election by spotlighting the trial of Hillary Clinton lawyer Michael Sussmann. Mr. Musk notes in his remarks that discovering the Trump-Russia collusion story was a hoax put together by the Clinton campaign, media and allies in government, “makes you wonder what else is fake.”

For CTH readers, and those who followed the series of events since 2016, the trial of Sussmann is not revealing anything we didn’t already know. However, for people who did not follow the deeply corrupt construct, the Sussmann trial is creating a new awakening. Musk notes he found out about it a month ago “and was blown away”. We must remember the vast majority of people in the U.S. have no idea the scale of corruption that took place within the Trump-Russia and Spygate operations. This trial is becoming a vending machine for red pill distribution. Also, perhaps keep in mind where you were a few years ago. Imagine, as an example, all of these newly awakened people finally discovering and accepting the FBI are the bad guys.


It likely took many CTH readers multiple years and dozens of examples before that acceptance was grounded. These are bitter pill acceptances, that eventually do lead to major changes in the social fabric and cohesion of a nation; but it’s a painful journey. Final thoughts… Do not dismiss the importance of what Elon Musk is doing. In addition to introducing millions of Americans to something they are newly experiencing, this shift in cultural opinion is akin to Musk playing the role of John Galt and swinging the social control pendulum away from the government.

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He sold her out. She will have to be questioned, under oath.

Wonder what he’s so afraid of.

Robby Mook Testifies Hillary Directed Campaign to Push Russiagate (CTH)

Former Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook was called as a prosecution witness in the trial against Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann today. During his appearance Mook was questioned about the fraudulent Alfa-Bank story that lies at the center of the prosecution against Sussmann. Robby Mook testified he had no idea who Sussmann was or what he was doing. However, Mook also stated he learned of the Alfa-Bank research during a meeting in 2016 and took it to Hillary Clinton, who then told him to share it with media.

MSM – “Hillary Clinton personally approved leaking to the media information alleging a connection between Donald Trump and a Russian bank in 2016, which the campaign itself had not fully confirmed, according to testimony Friday by Clinton’s campaign manager. Robby Mook, Clinton’s campaign chief, said in federal court that as the campaign against Trump heated up in the late summer and early fall of 2016, Marc Elias, who was then a lawyer with the Perkins Coie law firm and served as the campaign’s top legal adviser, told Mook that “people with expertise” in cyber activity had briefed the campaign on data alleging links between the Trump Organization and Alfa Bank, a Russian financial institution with ties to the Kremlin.

Mook’s testimony for the first time puts Clinton in the middle of a leak to the news media that ultimately blew up in the campaign’s face. The FBI quickly determined that the purported connection between the Russian bank and the Trump Organization was implausible and Michael Sussmann, Elias’s then law partner who brought the claims to the FBI, has since been indicted by Justice Department special counsel John Durham on charges he lied to the bureau’s general counsel to hide his connection to the Clinton campaign.”

Aside from the fact this revelation might be the biggest duh in modern political history, if my memory is correct Donald Trump has an outstanding lawsuit against Clinton and the campaign. This testimony could be useful.

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“..schlubby lawyer..”

Theories Exist to Be Proven (Jim Kunstler)

Time, they say, is nature’s way of making sure that everything doesn’t happen at once. Then why does everything seem to be happening at once? These must be unnaturally strange times. Here comes Ukraine… there goes Ukraine… our money is worthless… no water for Las Vegas… buh-bye Roe v Wade…financial markets wobbling… vaccine injuries everywhere… diesel prices killing truckers… food shortages… UFOs… World War Three… white supremacists… no baby formula… whoa… duck-and-cover, here comes monkeypox! So it goes with criticality in hyper-complex systems, the passing of thresholds into breakdown, all at the same time, failures mutually ramifying other failures seemingly unconnected, and weird things popping up in the dust and rubble like monsters in a bad dream.

I know it’s disconcerting to see the world fly apart. Forgive me then, while you fret about the future of your loved ones and your retirement account, if I focus in on just one thing for the moment: the doings of federal attorney John Durham, the special counsel looking into matters pertaining to RussiaGate, the first step in America’s attempted suicide. Mr. Durham is currently prosecuting a small fish, a sardine among the Lawfare sharks and killer whales of K Street, Michael Sussmann, for telling one measly lie to the FBI. Mr. Durham has been at this task for two years plus. That’s a long time to spend on a simple crime based on a few easy-to-get bits of evidence: a cell phone text, some emails, the testimony of one principal witness — and a pretext that no one ever took seriously in the first place: the punk-ass Alfa Bank conduit-to-Russia story.

So, in 2016, schlubby lawyer Michael Sussmann from Perkins Coie, the DC law firm representing the Hillary Clinton Campaign, asks for a meeting with his old DOJ colleague, Jim Baker, now General Counsel (top lawyer) for the FBI. He has some sensitive information that the Bureau might find interesting. He says he does not represent any particular client in the matter, he’s just stepping forward as a patriotic citizen. He emphasizes this point more than once, including a text, recorded in the digital cloud (uh-oh), the night before the meeting. He comes in out of the swampy Potomac heat to Mr. Baker’s air-conditioned lair at 935 Pennsylvania Avenue and spins a tale about a Russian-owned outfit called Alfa-Bank with computer servers located in the vicinity of Trump Tower in New York City, which, he alleges, are being used by candidate Donald Trump to communicate with bad guys in Russia.

The story goes nowhere fast. The FBI discounts it. Turns out that Mr. Sussmann billed the hours spent on this folderol to Hillary for America, which, prima facie, indicates he was working for her campaign at the time. Six years later, he’s indicted. Anyway, perhaps unbeknownst to Mr. Sussman, the FBI, in July 2016, had already ramped up an investigation into the Trump campaign with the sexy name “Crossfire Hurricane” — a lyric bit from the ancient Rolling Stones’ hit “Jumpin’ Jack Flash” — so anointed by FBI sexy super-agent Peter Strozk, who was at the time jumpin’ in-and-out of bed with colleague Lisa Page, legal counsel to FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe.

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“Take these guys to Vegas!”

Monkeypox Was a Table-Top Simulation Only Last Year (Senger)

Elite media outlets around the world are on red alert over the world’s first-ever global outbreak of Monkeypox in mid-May 2022—just one year after an international biosecurity conference in Munich held a simulation of a “global pandemic involving an unusual strain of Monkeypox” beginning in mid-May 2022. Monkeypox was first identified in 1958, but there’s never been a global Monkeypox outbreak outside of Africa until now—in the exact week of the exact month predicted by the biosecurity folks in their pandemic simulation. Take these guys to Vegas! Ed Yong, who’s penned dozens of hysterical articles on Covid for The Atlantic including such gems as COVID-19 Long-Haulers Are Fighting for Their Future, Even Health-Care Workers With Long COVID Are Being Dismissed, How Did This Many Deaths Become Normal? and The Final Pandemic Betrayal, is hot on the scene of the new Monkeypox outbreak.

Eric Feigl-Ding is also all over this. Epidemiologists Jennifer Nuzzo and Bill Hanage are on the scene—but still no word from them as to whether they see anything strange about the first-ever global Monkeypox outbreak occurring in mid-May 2022, a year after they acted as advisers on an international biosecurity simulation of a global Monkeypox outbreak occurring in mid-May 2022. The US Government is hot on the scene with an order of 13 million Monkeypox vaccine doses from Bavarian Nordic. The WHO is on the scene. The global Monkeypox outbreak—occurring on the exact timeline predicted by a biosecurity simulation of a global Monkeypox outbreak a year prior—bears a striking resemblance to the outbreak of COVID-19 just months after Event 201, a simulation of a coronavirus pandemic almost exactly like COVID-19.

Event 201 was hosted in October 2019—just two months before the coronavirus was first revealed in Wuhan—by the Gates Foundation, the World Economic Forum, Bloomberg, and Johns Hopkins. As with the Event 201, the participants at the Monkeypox simulation have thus far been stone silent as to their having participated in a pandemic simulation the facts of which happened to come true in real life just months later. One person who was present at both Event 201 and the Monkeypox simulation is George Fu Gao, director of the Chinese Center for Disease Control. At event 201, Gao specifically raised the point of countering “misinformation” during a “hypothetical” coronavirus pandemic.

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“That billionaire, “corporate raider” Ron Perelman, has deep and controversial ties to the Clinton family and the Democratic party as well as troubling ties to Jeffery Epstein.”

Monkeypox Fears May Rescue Endangered Corporations (Whitney Webb)

In recent days, concern over a global outbreak of monkeypox, a mild disease related to smallpox and chickenpox, has been hyped in the media and health ministries around the world, even prompting an emergency meeting at the World Health Organization (WHO). For some, fears have centered around monkeypox being the potential “next pandemic” after Covid-19. For others, the fear is that monkeypox will be used as the latest excuse to further advance draconian biosecurity policies and global power grabs. Regardless of how the monkeypox situation plays out, two companies are already cashing in. As concern over monkeypox has risen, so too have the shares of Emergent Biosolutions and SIGA Technologies.

Both companies essentially have monopolies in the US market, and other markets as well, on smallpox vaccines and treatments. Their main smallpox-focused products are, conveniently, also used to protect against or treat monkeypox as well. As a result, the shares of Emergent Biosolutions climbed 12% on Thursday, while those of SIGA soared 17.1%. For these companies, the monkeypox fears are a godsend, specifically for SIGA, which produces a smallpox treatment, known by its brand name TPOXX. It is SIGA’s only product. While some outlets have noted that the rise in the valuation of SIGA Technologies has coincided with recent concerns about monkeypox, essentially no attention has been given to the fact that the company is apparently the only piece of a powerful billionaire’s empire that isn’t currently crumbling.

That billionaire, “corporate raider” Ron Perelman, has deep and controversial ties to the Clinton family and the Democratic party as well as troubling ties to Jeffery Epstein. Aside from his controlling stake in SIGA, Perelman has recently made headlines for rapidly liquidating many of his assets in a desperate bid for cash. Similarly, Emergent Biosolutions has also been in hot water. The company, which has troubling ties to the 2001 Anthrax attacks, came under fire just under two weeks ago for engaging in a “cover up” over quality control issues relating to their production of Covid-19 vaccines. A Congressional investigation found that quality control concerns at an Emergent-run facility led to more than 400 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines being discarded. The Emergent factory in question had been shut down by the FDA in April 2021. They were allowed to reopen last August before the government terminated the contract.

Maajid

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“It was Russia that urged the UN to look into this situation and persuade the Kiev regime to let people walk out.”

Briefing by Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova, May 18, 2022 (Saker)

The special military operation continues in Ukraine. As Russian leaders have said more than once, it is going according to plan, and new territories are being freed from the Nazis every day. The Ukrainian military personnel and militants in Azov nationalist units that entrenched themselves in the underground bunkers of the Azovstal Plant, began to surrender in Mariupol this week. According to the Russian Defence Ministry, 959 Ukrainian nationalists, including 51 with severe wounds, have laid down their arms over two days. They receive medical aid at the Novoazovsk hospital in the DPR, and the rest were sent to a pretrial detention centre in Yelenovka in the suburbs of Donetsk. Indicatively, on May 17, this centre was shelled by the Armed Forces of Ukraine with multiple launch rocket systems (MLRSs).

The Kiev regime has always treated its citizens like this, and this case was no exception. Russian leaders had repeatedly stated that resistance was senseless and announced the opening of humanitarian corridors for militants and Ukrainian military personnel to leave the Azovstal Plant after laying down their arms. They were urged to stop the hostilities. In the meantime, the Kiev regime was doing all it could to prevent civilians, military personnel and militants from leaving the plant. Why? They were brainwashing the public. It was Russia that urged the UN to look into this situation and persuade the Kiev regime to let people walk out. Later, Russia organised humanitarian corridors in cooperation with the UN and the International Committee of the Red Cross. I would like to emphasise that the initiative on announcing and opening these corridors was ours.

The wounded troops are provided with professional medical help. This fact is being turned upside down and misrepresented in the Ukrainian and international media. Remember the footage showing how the militants and the Armed Forces of Ukraine treat POWs in Ukraine? Everyone saw it. It horrified many, others pretended not to have seen it. Russian POWs were shot to death by militants from the nationalist units that became part of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. Russia has adopted a different approach. You see footage showing professional help being provided to the wounded [Ukrainian troops]. It is not being provided “for show.” It is provided to real individuals regardless of their background. Humanitarian law is not just something we abide by; it is of fundamental importance for us. No one should have any doubt about this.

According to Ukrainian POWs, the military leadership of Ukraine forbids the troops to retreat or surrender. Their key goal is to destroy as much civilian infrastructure as possible in order to leave behind uninhabitable ruins and make it hard to restore peaceful life. This is not our messaging, but the testimony received from the Ukrainian side over the past weeks.

There Is No “Open Corridor” Through West and Central Ukraine

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“Not irrelevant in all of this is the fact that Freeland’s grandfather was the chief editor of a Nazi newspaper during WWII in Galicia and that she is indeed aware of this and apparently unapologetic.”

So How Serious Is Ukraine’s Neo-Nazi Romance? (Chung)

I suggest we do a little exercise together. Let us dare to discern the “facts” for ourselves. Only then, will we cease being mere cheerleaders for a team; only then, can we qualify ourselves to ask in all honest sincerity, “whose side are we truly on?” Are Nazis Now the New “Good Guys”? There is a bit of mixed messaging that has been going on, especially in the last few weeks. Are there significant numbers of Nazis in Ukraine and are these “bad” or “good” Nazis in the context that they are fighting the Russian “invaders”? In one breath we hear the counter, how can there be Nazis in Ukraine when there is a Jewish President calling the shots? In another breath we hear Facebook is now allowing users to praise the neo-Nazi Azov Battalion while they are fighting Russians.

In yet another breath we hear, well its complicated, Ukrainian Nationalism should be considered at the forefront of any debate, even if it overlaps with Nazi ideology. On Feb. 27, 2022, Canadian Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland held a scarf bearing the slogan “Slava Ukraini,” meaning “Glory to Ukraine,” with the “Blood and Soil” colors of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA) (who collaborated with the Nazis during WWII and massacred thousands of Jews and Poles). She then proceeded to post this picture onto her Twitter account (replacing it hours later with a picture of her without the “Blood and Soil” scarf) and accused her detractors of “reeking of Russian disinformation”. This controversial picture of Freeland was reported by Canada’s National Post.

According to Freeland’s press secretary, this was just another case of a “classic KGB disinformation smear… accusing Ukrainians and Ukrainian-Canadians of being far right extremists or fascists or Nazis,” which is a confusing statement on multiple levels. It is not clear how this is a case of “Russian disinformation,” since the picture is indeed authentic, Freeland does not deny this. And she is indeed holding a “Blood and Soil” emblem, which originated with the Nazis, clear for everyone to see. Lastly, it is confusing as to why the Canadian government seems to be unaware that the KGB no longer exists. Are they also under the impression that the Soviet Union still exists? Not irrelevant in all of this is the fact that Freeland’s grandfather was the chief editor of a Nazi newspaper during WWII in Galicia and that she is indeed aware of this and apparently unapologetic.

Whenever she is questioned about this, she does not deny anything, but simply blames such a focus of inquiry on Russian disinformation with the intent to “destabilize Western democracies.” That is, it is not a question of what is one’s historical or ideological background, but a question of “whose side are you on?” Interestingly, it was the Canadian newspaper “The Globe and Mail” who reported this story, titled “Freeland knew her grandfather was editor of Nazi newspaper,” thus, not a Russian publication last time I checked. And upon whom did they base such information? None other than Freeland’s own uncle, John-Paul Himka, who is now professor emeritus at the University of Alberta.

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More from Canada.

Yes, The Ukraine War Could Have Been Prevented (Maple)

Foreign policy experts are pushing back against the Canadian Ambassador to Ukraine’s recent claim that nothing could have prevented Vladimir Putin’s illegal invasion of Ukraine. In an interview with CBC News’ Rosemary Barton last Sunday, Larisa Galadza, who returned to the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv this month after the Canadian embassy was evacuated ahead of the invasion in February, said: “I don’t think there was anyone who could stop Putin doing what Putin did, given the frame of mind that we all expect him to be in. He wasn’t believing history. He wasn’t logical. He wasn’t rational. He isn’t rational, so I don’t know how one prevents that.” Barton did not press Galadza on those claims, and instead asked about how the ambassador felt when the Canadian flag was raised again over the embassy in Kyiv last week.

Ivan Katchanovski, a political science professor with expertise on Ukraine and Russia at the University of Ottawa, told The Maple that Galadza’s claims are not supported by evidence or scholarship. “[The war] could have been avoided and prevented,” Katchanovski explained. Specifically, an agreement in which Ukraine promised to remain a neutral country and the fulfilment of the Minsk accords could have stopped Putin’s invasion, he said. The Minsk accords were two agreements, the first signed in 2014 and the second in 2015, that were established in an effort to end fighting in the Donbas region between Ukrainian forces and Russian separatists. The agreements granted self-governing rights to areas of the Donbas region that were held by the separatists, among other pledges.

The 2014 agreement broke down and failed to stop the fighting. The updated agreement in 2015 was never properly implemented, and ceasefire violations from both sides continued. According to data from the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, which monitors the conflict, there were more than 93,000 ceasefire violations on both sides and 16 civilian deaths caused by the fighting in the Donbas region in 2021. Heavy concentrations of explosions caused by shells fired by multi-launch rocket systems, artillery, mortars and tanks landed in areas held by separatists, where ethnic Russians constitute the largest minority group. According to the UN Human Rights Commissioner, 81 per cent of the 381 civilian casualties caused by the fighting from 2018 to 2021 were in separatist-held areas.

Western countries have been criticized for not pressuring Ukraine to uphold its side of the Minsk agreement. Katchanovski suggested that before Putin’s invasion, a successful peace agreement could have allowed for Ukraine to eventually join the European Union (EU) in exchange for neutrality. EU integration was a key demand of the Western-backed 2014 uprising that overthrew Kyiv’s pro-Russia government. The violent uprising and its fallout prompted Russia’s annexation of Crimea the same year. However, seeking a peace deal with Russia, “was not a policy of the United States, which has a very strong influence on Ukrainian politics and on [Ukrainian President Volodymr] Zelenskyy in particular,” Katchanovski explained. He said Ukraine is a “U.S. client state.”

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Rubles.

Russia Will Shut Off Gas To Finland From Saturday (CNBC)

Russia may have just made its first retaliatory move against Finland after lawmakers in Helsinki officially applied to join the NATO military alliance. Gasum, Finland’s state-owned gas wholesaler, said in a statement Friday morning that imports from Russia will be halted on Saturday. “On the afternoon of Friday May 20, Gazprom Export informed Gasum that natural gas supplies to Finland under Gasum’s supply contract will be cut on Saturday May 21, 2022 at 07.00,” it said in a statement. Gasum’s CEO, Mika Wiljanen, added that the company had been preparing for such a situation “and provided that there will be no disruptions in the gas transmission network, we will be able to supply all our customers with gas in the coming months.”


“Gasum will supply natural gas to its customers from other sources through the Balticconnector pipeline. Gasum’s gas filling stations in the gas network area will continue in normal operation,” he said. It comes after Russia’s state-run gas giant Gazprom in April told Poland and Bulgaria that it would halt flows after both countries refused Moscow’s demand to pay for gas supplies in rubles. Gasum gave no reason for the move, but Finland has also reportedly refused to pay for Russian gas in rubles. It also comes just two days after Finland formally applied to join NATO. Russia had warned of retaliation if the traditionally neutral nation became a member of the Western military alliance. After Finland’s application, alongside fellow Nordic nation Sweden, Moscow wasted no time in making its feelings known, with Russian President Vladimir Putin saying Monday that the expansion of NATO “is a problem.”

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More rubles.

Ruble Hits 7-Year High As Gas Buyers Bow To Putin’s Payment Mandate (ZH)

On Friday the ruble surged to the highest level in seven years against the euro, thanks in large part to the Putin-ordered mandatory conversion of foreign currency by export-focused companies, also as China and India (and much of Europe) are still buying Russia’s energy and agricultural products… despite the loud the threats coming from Washington, which have lately included a potential move to block Russian sovereign debt payments. At this point the Russian currency is about 20% stronger than pre-invasion, as the war grinds on into its fourth month. Jumping as much as 9% against the Euro, the ruble last hit this level in June 2015… Aiding the surge, there’s further been weak demand for dollars and euros given restrictions on cross-border transactions, and as an increasingly isolated Russia sees slowed imports.


While it’s unclear which companies or countries are consenting to the Putin-ordered ruble payment mechanism, it’s clear the Russian leader’s gambit is working, as Bloomberg reviews: Under the new mechanism, importers of Russian pipeline gas must open two accounts at Gazprombank to handle payments for the fuel. Around half of Gazprom’s more than 50 foreign clients have already opened such accounts, Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak said earlier this week. Finland has become the latest alongside Poland and Bulgaria last month being cut off from Russian gas supplies (Finland confirmed its taps will be cut Saturday, though much less reliant on gas among its diverse resources). Novak further confirmed that a number of “major clients” have either already paid using the mechanism are are willing to pay on time to avoid cutoff.

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Kolakusic
https://twitter.com/i/status/1527566617844011008

 

 

 

 

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May 132022
 


Margaret Gillies Charles Dickens 1844

 

Rand Paul Blocks Fast-Track Senate Vote for $40 Billion Ukraine Funding (CTH)
Finlandization of Ukraine, Ukraine-ization of Finland (Nuna Costa)
The Guardian View On Expanding Nato: Putin Has Only Himself To Blame (G.)
‘Finland Will Be A NATO Backwater’ (ZH)
Two Months of Operation Z (Malenica)
‘Russia Started the War’ and Other Fallacies (Whitney)
The Destiny of Civilization – Michael Hudson (Norton)
Diesel Fuel Shortage Sets Stage for Next Biden Created Crisis (CTH)
Meet the Head of Biden’s New “Disinformation Governing Board” (Golinkin)
Beijing Residents Swamp Supermarkets After Lockdown Rumours (CNA)
“Genetically Edited” Food – The Next Stage of the Great Reset? (OffG)

 

 

I kid you not: People today blame NATO’s expansion on Putin.

 

 

Immune system shutdown
https://twitter.com/i/status/1524509732878548992

 

 

Russia has named 12 EU countries involved.

 

 

COVID vaccines have “rigorous standards that are much higher” than any in U.S. history

 

 

 

 

Glenn Beck Ecohealth

 

 

“Printing $40 billion to send to a deeply corrupt nation in Eastern Europe”. Rand Paul wants oversight of how the money will be spent. He can’t have it. None of the people who voted in favor have actually read the bill. There was no time. This will go into next week, giving them that time. How many do you think will read it?

Rand Paul Blocks Fast-Track Senate Vote for $40 Billion Ukraine Funding (CTH)

Senator Rand Paul has blocked a fast-track senate vote on the additional $40 billion funding package created by Joe Biden and House Democrats. Both Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell approved a fast-track vote; however, senator Rand Paul (KY) stood defiant against their effort. Despite the high-profile pressure from the two Senate leaders, Rand Paul refused to move and that means the Senate will have to take procedural steps to overcome his objection, which could take several days. “My oath of office is the US constitution not to any foreign nation and no matter how sympathetic the cause, my oath of office is to the national security of the United States of America,” Paul said in his remarks before objecting to moving to swift passage of the bill. “We cannot save Ukraine by dooming the US economy.”


The $40 billion supplemental spending bill for Ukraine is more than the total military budget of Russia. The combined Ukraine aid packages now exceed $60 billion, more than the entire budget for the U.S. Dept of Homeland Security including border protection. Rand Paul is on the right side of history with his position, and the overwhelming majority of Americans agree with him. However, the opinion of the people is irrelevant to the Senate. Even democrat Senator Chuck Schumer seemed to admit this point when he said Rand Paul’s position “was not the opinion of the overwhelming majority here,” meaning in the senate. Schumer would have used other terms if he thought the American people agreed with him. They don’t, and he knows it.

Rand Paul

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“..if this “express” entry of the Nordic country into the Alliance goes ahead, it will suppose an increment of more than double the length of the current border between NATO and Russia.”

Finlandization of Ukraine, Ukraine-ization of Finland (Nuna Costa)

The Finnish President and Prime Minister today announced their support for the country’s membership of NATO at the forthcoming summit in Madrid on 29-30 June. I have no illusions, this is bound to happen without the will of the Finns for which a popular referendum had been promised on the matter, or that it will even be submitted to Parliament, where it would be approved anyway. The main internal requirement for the admission of new countries is that they “add security” to the bloc. Since when does this move make Europe safer? But there are more conditions and clauses of the international legal framework that are being purposefully violated, and shameless disregard for signed agreements.

Let us not even mention the still pending demands that the Kremlin notified in writing to NATO in December, which NATO chose not even to respond to, and which obviously clash with the current situation. Russia had already made it known that the entry of Sweden and especially Finland into NATO is perceived as a threat. Perhaps it was reasonable to understand the Russian point of view. The President of Croatia has recently made it known that he will veto the planned extension as it is “a very dangerous adventure”, in the words of his MFA. Any country can and should oppose this clear provocation, but we know that if this happens, those who are interested in the militarisation of Europe will spin the issue one way or another, as there have never been legal or procedural limits of any kind to this complex.

So, if this “express” entry of the Nordic country into the Alliance goes ahead, it will suppose an increment of more than double the length of the current border between NATO and Russia. This should be viewed with great caution, since all members will be affected by whatever may happen from there. This has been said here before, but today the irresponsibility becomes clearer and the concomitant danger more imminent. After long years of discussion about the so-called possible and reasonable Finlandisation of Ukraine’ as a militarily neutral zone between Europe and the nuclear superpower Russia, we are now much closer to the Ukraine-ization of Finland. Do you know what that means?

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Willfully blind.

The Guardian View On Expanding Nato: Putin Has Only Himself To Blame (G.)

Nato expansion has doubtless contributed to Mr Putin’s paranoid mindset. He sees the organisation as little more than an expression of US power. But it is primarily Russian aggression that has driven expansion, not vice versa. The fear of provoking Moscow tied the hands of its neighbour Finland, and Sweden, for years. Now the all-out assault on Ukraine has led many to conclude that there is nothing to lose – while Russia’s failures there have suggested that it may be less fearsome than they thought. Sweden and Finland joining Nato would leave Kaliningrad, home of Moscow’s Baltic Sea fleet, encircled. Predictably, Russia has vowed retaliation for the Finnish announcement. It had already said it would deploy nuclear weapons in the Baltic, though the real threat is more likely to come in the form of disinformation, cyber-attacks, and other provocations.


Yet Moscow should not be the alliance’s only concern. It must also look closer to home. In the US, 57 Republicans voted against the $40bn aid package for Ukraine in the House of Representatives and it faces Republican objections in the Senate. As the Democrats flounder, the spectre of Donald Trump – or someone like him – as the 47th president looms larger. And despite the defeat of Marine Le Pen in last month’s French presidential election, ambivalence or antagonism towards Nato has not vanished from Europe. In Italy, where a general election is due next year, most voters oppose the government’s decisions to increase defence spending and send arms to Ukraine. The alliance exists to counter the threat on its eastern borders. It can only do so by remaining vigilant to internal vulnerabilities.

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Will Russia cut off oil and gas to Finland? It gets 100% of both that way.

‘Finland Will Be A NATO Backwater’ (ZH)

A Kremlin spokesman earlier in the day warned that Finland joining NATO would “definitely” be a threat that would trigger “retaliatory steps” – but stopped short of identifying specific possible courses of action. “NATO is moving toward us. That’s of course why all of this will warrant a special analysis and the development of necessary measures needed to balance the situation and guarantee our security,” the initial Kremlin response stated. Later in the day Thursday – a number of hours after Finland’s president Sauli Niinisto and Prime Minister Sanna Marin announced the country will apply for NATO membership “without delay” – Russian Ambassador to the EU Vladimir Chizhov elaborated on Moscow’s likely response in an interview with Sky News.

“Russia will be forced to take retaliatory steps, both of military and other nature, in order to curtail the threats that arise to its national security in this regard,” Chizhov stressed in the interview when asked about its neighbor Finland as well as Sweden applying to NATO. The two countries first sent strong signals regarding this complete U-turn in historic policy last month in response to Russia’s ongoing military aggression against Ukraine. The Russian ambassador said further in the UK television interview that he’s “deeply disappointed and saddened” by the development, while saying in a somewhat condescending tone that Finland has been “pushing above its weight, having become in the last few decades a major power in promoting European security architecture.”

Further he said the Scandinavian neighbor which shares an 810-mile border with Russia would inevitably become a “NATO backwater” if it does move forward in entering the military alliance. Sky News also quoted Chizov as explaining the following possible change in defense posture: The ambassador said such a move would “certainly necessitate rethinking of Russian defence posture” but wouldn’t “necessarily [involve] troops and tanks, but certain preparations definitely… like radars, perhaps”.

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A long detailed overview.

Two Months of Operation Z (Malenica)

From the author’s perspective, what is currently happening in Ukraine is a conflict between the Russian and Western concepts of war, that is, the concept of war as conceived by NATO. Among other things, this conflict is also a question of the prestige for the West, which has so far seen itself as the most militarily capable bloc on the planet. Having trained Ukrainian ground army[50] to NATO standards and equipped it with anti-tank and anti-aircraft portable systems, the West is now observing performance of these forces against Russian troops. This is, as well, one of reasons for the omnipresent Western propaganda campaign. Moreover, within this conflict, it is necessary to view Ukrainian media and propaganda sources as organic offshoots of Western intelligence agencies and public relations firms, of which at least 150 have participated in creating and spreading propaganda for Kiev since the beginning of hostilities.

Likewise, make no mistake, majority if not all intelligence at disposal of Kiev is of NATO origin. In an event that Ukrainian troops are defeated by Russian units, it will be clear that equipping and training army in accordance with NATO standards does not guarantee the highest level of combat capability. At the same time, the possible defeat of Ukraine will shake the reputation of NATO itself, especially the United States, whose last year’s debacle in Afghanistan is still fresh in memory. Russia’s eventual victory would be the second major case in modern times where forces equipped and trained by the West have been defeated by non-Western armies.

In this context, one should also observe the huge military aid that has been pouring into Kiev for two months now by countries of the West and European Union. As US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin recently pointed out, the United States wants “to see Russia weakened to the degree that it can’t do the kinds of things that it has done in invading Ukraine.”[53] This only confirms what many analysts have already pointed out, that Kiev and Moscow are not at war in Ukraine, but Russia against the collective West led by Washington. The United States needs, both for domestic and foreign policy, Russian defeat in Ukraine.

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“..the indivisibility of security..”

“..signatories to these treaties are not free to develop their own military capability to the point where it poses a danger to their neighbors..”

‘Russia Started the War’ and Other Fallacies (Whitney)

On Monday, Putin delivered the annual “Victory Day” speech celebrating Russia’s victory over Nazi Germany in 1945. The Russian president made none of the hyperbolic pronouncements the media had predicted but, instead, gave a brief recap of the events leading up to the war in Ukraine. There was none of the bravado you’d expect from a leader trying to gin up support for the ongoing war. Putin simply reminded the crowd that he had done everything he could to avoid the bloody conflict in which Russia is currently embroiled. Here’s part of what he said: “Last December we proposed signing a treaty on security guarantees. Russia urged the West to hold an honest dialogue in search for meaningful and compromising solutions, and to take account of each other’s interests. All in vain. NATO countries did not want to heed us, which means they had totally different plans. And we saw it.”

This is an accurate account of what took place in the months preceding the war. Putin tried to avoid a confrontation by repeatedly asking the US to address Russia’s reasonable security concerns. Unfortunately, the Biden administration brushed off Putin’s demands without even providing a response. The US and NATO insist that Ukraine has every right to choose whatever security arrangement it wants. But that’s clearly not the case. The United States and every nation in NATO have signed treaties (Istanbul in 1999, and Astana in 2010) that stipulate they cannot improve their own security at the expense of others. The principle underlying these agreements is called “the indivisibility of security”, which means that the security of one state can’t be separated from the security of the others.

In practical terms, that means that signatories to these treaties are not free to develop their own military capability to the point where it poses a danger to their neighbors. These terms are especially applicable to Ukraine which is seeking membership in a military alliance that is openly hostile to Russia. NATO membership has always been a “red line” for Putin who has stated repeatedly that he will not allow NATO bases, combat troops and missile sites to be located on Ukrainian soil where they’d be just a stone’s throw from Moscow. As one critic from Texas put it, “You wouldn’t let a rattlesnake make its home on your front porch, would you?” No, you wouldn’t, and neither would Putin.

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“..financial planning is short-termism; it’s short-term planning; it’s take your money and run. And that’s what is stripping and impoverishing the global economy today.”

The Destiny of Civilization – Michael Hudson (Norton)

[..] finance capitalism is what has essentially de-industrialized the United States and turned the Midwest into a Rust Belt. Well, the alternative, obviously, are the societies that have not followed this neoliberal finance capitalist plan. And the most successful economy, obviously, has been China, which is why it has been spending so much time there. And China has done exactly what 19th-century United States, Germany, England, and France did. It has kept basic utilities, basic needs, housing, and above all, finance and banking, in the public domain, as public utilities. Instead of having an independent financial sector operating on its own self-interest, the Bank of China creates the money.

And the Bank of China lends money by deciding, where do we need to have investment in real estate to provide housing for the population at as low a price as we can make it? How do we build up the industry? How do we provide an educational system with training? How do we provide health? And the fact is that the central planning in an efficient socialist style, not the Stalinist planning that everybody refers to of Russia, but a mixed economy as you have in China, which is truly a mixed economy, with guidance, like the French planification. Well, that is obviously the way in which you survive and you avoid the kind of overloading the economy with debt service, with high rents, with high payments to the health-care monopoly in the United States, by avoiding all of this payment to a rentier class that has what the classical economists call unearned income, predatory income.

And instead of unseating them, we’ve put them in charge, and made the banks and Wall Street, and the city of London, and the Paris Bourse, the central planners. So we do have central planning much more centralized than anything that was dreamed by the socialists. But the planning, the centralized planning is done by the financial sector. And financial planning is short-termism; it’s short-term planning; it’s take your money and run. And that’s what is stripping and impoverishing the global economy today.

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“..shortages of diesel fuel on the East Coast may happen in the coming week at some stores..”

Diesel Fuel Shortage Sets Stage for Next Biden Created Crisis (CTH)

It has often been said that if you chase the global climate change ideology to its natural conclusion, we end up in communal groups sitting around a tepid campfire eating some form of sustainable algae cakes and picking parasites off each other… Prior to Joe Biden that prediction might have seemed like hyperbole. Now, not so much. Indeed, the Green New Deal energy policy of Joe Biden creates massive downstream consequences. Unfortunately, the White House doesn’t seem to care. The high prices and scarcity of critical goods are a feature, not a flaw, as they chase their climate friendly Build Back Better agenda. Following the continuum of intended consequence, now we have diesel fuel shortages beginning to hit the U.S. economy; and with scarcity comes higher prices of an almost astronomical scale.

“The national average price of diesel is now $5.54 per gallon, which is an increase of 22 cents from last week, which was when the most recent record was set. Data shows there’s no state that’s currently seeing diesel prices below $5.12 per gallon.” Making matters even worse is a drop in available inventory of diesel fuel which is about to become a crisis for the east coast of the U.S. Some Truck Stop operators like Love’s and Pilot are already warning their big rig customers they may not have fuel for truckers. […] “Love’s is monitoring the fluid situation on the East Coast, we have experienced minimal outages during low traffic hours,” Oklahoma-based Love’s Travel Stops said in an emailed statement. “The company has no plans to restrict purchases of diesel.”

[…] Earlier on Wednesday, the U.S. government’s Energy Information Administration said total inventories of distillates, which is mainly diesel fuel but also heating oil, fell last week to a 17-year low of 104 million barrels, which is 23% below normal. On the East Coast, the situation is even worse. The EIA said distillate fuel oil inventories in the so-called PADD 1 district that covers the Northeastern states fell by 1.1 million barrels last week to just 21 million barrels, the lowest ever recorded in data going back to 1990. Love’s truck stops, with some 550 locations across 41 states, also seemed to confirm reports on social media Wednesday that said Love’s and other truck stops such as Pilot were informing their fleet operators that shortages of diesel fuel on the East Coast may happen in the coming week at some stores.

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Azov whitewasher.

Meet the Head of Biden’s New “Disinformation Governing Board” (Golinkin)

Late last month, the Joe Biden administration publicly confirmed that a “Disinformation Governing Board” working group had been created within the Department of Homeland Security. The news prompted a flood of concern about the impact of such an Orwellian organ on America. But there’s no need to engage in hypotheticals to understand the dangers. One has to only consider the past of Nina Jankowicz, the head of the new disinformation board. Jankowicz’s experience as a disinformation warrior includes her work with StopFake, a US government-funded “anti-disinformation” organization founded in March 2014 and lauded as a model of how to combat Kremlin lies. Four years later, StopFake began aggressively whitewashing two Ukrainian neo-Nazi groups with a long track record of violence, including war crimes.

Today, StopFake is an official Facebook fact-checking partner, which gives it the power to censor news, while Jankowicz is America’s disinformation czar. If the Biden administration is serious about combating threats such as white supremacy, perhaps it should first reflect on the old Roman question: Who will guard the guardians? StopFake was founded right after Ukraine’s 2014 Maidan uprising ousted the country’s president and swept a new, US-backed government into power. Formed by professors and students from the Kyiv Mohyla Journalism School, StopFake presented itself as a plucky, grassroots group wielding hard facts and semi-permanent smirks as it shredded Russian propaganda. It gained notoriety by producing slick videos hosted by dynamic disinformation warriors debunking the Moscow lies of the day.

Western reporters—and checkbooks—were paying attention. Shortly after its creation, StopFake began receiving funding from Western governments, including the National Endowment for Democracy—an organization mainly funded by the US Congress—and the British embassy in Ukraine. It was also supported by George Soros’s Open Society Foundation. (StopFake has run numerous episodes that cover Soros but fail to disclose this potential conflict of interest—a violation of basic tenets of journalism.) Among StopFake’s hosts was Jankowicz, a graduate of Bryn Mawr and the Georgetown School of Foreign Service who was already part of the burgeoning disinformation warrior industry while in Ukraine as a Fulbright Clinton Public Policy Fellow. On January 29, 2017, she hosted StopFake Episode 117, whose lead story dealt with a perennial obsession of Russian propaganda: Ukraine’s volunteer battalions.

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“I’ll be fine whether I’m required to stay home for three days or seven.”

Beijing Residents Swamp Supermarkets After Lockdown Rumours (CNA)

Beijing residents rushed to supermarkets on Thursday (May 12) as Chinese officials tried to curb mounting panic over a rumour the capital would be placed under stay-at-home orders. The city has been trying to stamp out a wave of cases in recent weeks, closing subway stations and telling many residents to work from home, with hundreds of communities sealed off to contain cases. On Thursday there were rumours online that authorities were about to impose a strict lockdown, prompting many to rush to food stores and stock up. Beijing residents fear they may face draconian measures similar to those that have trapped most of Shanghai’s 25 million people at home for weeks – after what was initially described as a days-long shutdown.


No lockdown was announced Thursday, but officials confirmed they will start three more rounds of mass testing for residents in 12 of the city’s main districts and “recommended” that people stay home and “reduce movement” during that time. AFP saw staff at one local supermarket in central Beijing rushing to restock as shelves of vegetables were emptied out. Sui Xin, 41, told AFP that he had gone to the store after he read on social media that the capital’s officials might keep residents at home. “Everyone is stocking up,” he said, buying eggs and instant noodles. “I’ll be fine whether I’m required to stay home for three days or seven.” “I’m just buying some chicken wings and instant noodles, there’s nothing left,” a shopper surnamed Huang said, queueing at another packed supermarket.

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From “genetically modified” to “genetically edited”..

First you make them hungry, then you push their “new food” on them.

“Genetically Edited” Food – The Next Stage of the Great Reset? (OffG)

But the part I found most interesting is the stated plan to “encourage agricultural and scientific innovation at home” via the proposed Genetic Technology (Precision Breeding) Bill. The proposed bill (which, for some reason is not available through the parliament website) follows on from DEFRA’s announced “loosened regulation” of genetic research back in January. To quote the National Institute of Agricultural Botany (NIAB), the legislation would “take certain precision breeding techniques out of the scope of restrictive GMO rules”. Essentially, this would see new “gene-edited” foods as distinct from old-fashioned “genetically modified” foods, and therefore not subject to the same rules and oversight.

The claimed distinction is that gene editing, as opposed to genetic modification, doesn’t introduce DNA from other species. Therefore, in effect, is merely speeding up what could potentially naturally happen over time. Now, you might think this is just semantics, and that such a law will just provide a loophole for ALL “genetically modified” foods to simply rebrand themselves as “genetically edited” foods, and thereby avoid regulation. But that is disgustingly cynical and shame on you for even thinking it. All in all, this is pretty on-message stuff, and not especially surprising. What’s noteworthy is – by pure happenstance, I’m sure – it appears to coincide with a renewed push on the GM food front in other countries all over the world.

In December 2021, Switzerland added an amendment to its moratorium on GMO crops, permitting the use of certain “gene editing” techniques. Last month, Egypt announced their new strain of GM wheat. Just two days ago, Ethiopia’s National Agricultural Biotechnology Research Center announced they had researched, and the country will now be growing, genetically modified cotton and maize. Despite Russia’s sweeping ban on the cultivation and/or importing of genetically modified crops, they have nonetheless created a 111 billion Ruble project to create up to 30 varieties of genetically edited plants and farm animals. Britain’s deregulation of GM food is always described as a “post-Brexit” move – with the EU chided around the world for its “precautionary principle” on GM crops – and yet as long ago as last April, the EU was calling for a “rethink” on GM crops.

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Madonna

 

 

 

 

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May 102022
 
 May 10, 2022  Posted by at 1:41 pm Finance Tagged with: , , , , , ,  16 Responses »


Ivan Aivazovsky Constantinople in Moonlight 1846

 

 

This is a letter by Scott Ritter, former US Marine Corps intelligence officer. It was published on RT as “An Open Letter To The American People – as Russia celebrates its WW2 victory over the Nazis”, but since RT is mostly banned in the west, I’ll post it here. It absolutely deserves that.

 

 

Scott Ritter: An Open Letter To The American People – as Russia celebrates its WW2 victory over the Nazis

 

 

To those who have forgotten the sacrifices the ‘Greatest Generation’ made to defeat Hitler.

In his 1998 classic, ‘The Greatest Generation’, famed NBC journalist Tom Brokow examined the lives and experiences of some of the millions of American men and women who fought in the Second World War.

“At a time in their lives when their days and nights should have been filled with innocent adventure, love, and the lessons of the workaday world,” Brokow observed, “they were fighting in the most primitive conditions possible across the bloodied landscape of France, Belgium, Italy, Austria, and the coral islands of the Pacific. They answered the call to save the world from the two most powerful and ruthless military machines ever assembled, instruments of conquest in the hands of fascist maniacs. They faced great odds and a late start, but they did not protest. They succeeded on every front. They won the war; they saved the world.”Brokow had “come to understand what this generation of Americans meant to history. It is, I believe, the greatest generation any society has ever produced.”

I was born in 1961, some two decades after the United States entered the Second World War. By this time, the defeat of Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan had receded into the history books, replaced by a new and even more menacing foe, the Soviet Union. My father was a US Air Force officer whose career path up to 1977 looked like a Cold War-era tourist map, with service in Vietnam, Korea, and Turkey. I grew up with the mantra “better dead than red”drilled into my head, convinced that the service my father was providing to our nation was essential for the survival of the free world.

In 1977, my family moved to West Germany. My father had been reassigned to the 17th Air Force, headquartered at Sembach Air Force Base. We opted to live off base, in “the economy” as we called it, eventually settling into a magnificent house in the village of Marnheim owned by a German family who had been renting it out to US servicemen for decades. The house had a history, too. In 1945, it had served as a temporary headquarters for General George S. Patton as his 3rd Army advanced through the Rhein Pfaltz region of Germany during the Second World War.

We were three decades removed from that war when we moved to Germany, but reminders of that conflict were all around us. I spent the summer of 1978 working in a meat inspection facility staffed by what we euphemistically called “DPs,” for “displaced persons.” When the Second World War ended, millions of Europeans who had been enslaved by Nazi Germany found themselves liberated from their prison-like existence, but with no home to return to. This population included many children. The United States provided many of these permanently displaced persons with jobs and a place to live.

For thousands this existence became a way of life, and they were employed in service of America’s expansive military presence in West Germany. By the time I became acquainted with the “DP” community, some 33 years later, these children had grown into adults who were deeply grateful for the opportunities provided by the United States. They were also deeply resentful of the German people for having imprisoned them and destroying the Europe of their childhood. The experience of the “DPs” was a wake-up call for an American teenager who, by living among the Germans, had grown to view them as simply a foreign-speaking mirror image of myself and my family. But it wasn’t that simple.

 

In January 1979 West German television broadcast, over four consecutive nights, the ABC miniseries ‘The Holocaust’. After each episode, the Germans ran a live panel of historians who would take questions from the audience (it is estimated that over half of Germany watched the series.) Like most Americans living in Germany, I had missed out on the series when it was originally aired in the United States the previous year. My family tuned in and, out of curiosity, remained tuned in during the panels.

We were shocked by what we heard – the children of Germans who had been alive during the Second World War were calling the panel, in hysterics, denouncing their parents and their nation for allowing such a thing to happen. The distinguished academics and psychologists that had been assembled for these panels were stunned into silence by the outrage and anger – they simply had no answer to the question of not only how such a thing had been allowed to happen, but why they had not been taught about it growing up. Germany, it seemed, had tried to erase the criminality of its Nazi past from its present reality.

As focused as my family was on living less than one hour’s drive from the border between East and West Germany where, on the other side, hundreds of thousands of Soviet soldiers were stationed, poised (in our minds, at least) to launch an attack at any moment which would bring our idyllic life to a sudden and horrific halt, we could not escape the constant reminder of what had transpired on the European continent a scant three-and-a-half decades past.

One of the most poignant reminders lay across another border, this one to the west, where, near the Luxembourgish town of Hamm, the Luxembourg American Cemetery and Memorial was located. The final resting place for more than 5,000 Americans who died fighting in the Battle of the Bulge, Hamm was also where General Patton was laid to rest following his accidental death in December 1945 (his widow believed he “would want to lie beside the men of his army who have fallen.”)

My parents made it a point to take us to Hamm on several occasions while we lived in Germany; it was a short, scenic drive, and the cemetery itself was beautiful, a fitting memorial for those who had made the ultimate sacrifice. We would always visit the nearby Sandweiler German Cemetery, also in Luxembourg, where the remains of more than 10,000 German soldiers who died fighting the Americans were interned. Both cemeteries were a somber, sobering experience.

 

But it wasn’t until my Uncle Mel visited us that the reality of what those cemeteries represented hit home. Mel was the living embodiment of Tom Brokow’s ‘The Greatest Generation’, having served in the European theater during World War II, coming across the Normandy beaches a week or so after D-Day. His unit – a transportation company tasked with driving trucks along the famous “red ball express,” had enjoyed a relatively easy time of it in France. Part of Patton’s 3rd Army, they participated in the liberation of France, and by the time they rolled up to the Benelux (Belgium-Netherlands-Luxembourg) border with Germany, had suffered no major casualties.

Mel had asked to visit some of the areas he had passed through during the war. Most brought back good memories, but at one location he stopped talking. Here his unit had been bracketed by German artillery, and in an instant more than 200 of his comrades were killed or wounded; many of those who died were buried at Hamm.

The crosses and Stars of David that were so beautifully laid out on the manicured grass suddenly had faces, names and personalities that could not be ignored. What had been a peaceful haven transformed instantly into a horrible reminder of the awful cost of war. To this day, I can’t pass a military cemetery without visualizing the circumstances of the events that took the lives of those buried there. All the hopes, dreams, and aspirations that I and others have been able to act out during our lives were denied these young men, usually under circumstances that the average person cannot imagine.

And the persons responsible for their deaths were the same Germans with whom I so peaceably co-existed back across the border. The same ones whose children became infuriated at their parent’s forgetfulness about the nature of the regime which killed so many millions in pursuit of the ambitions of one of the most odious ideologies of all humanity – Nazism.

In college, I studied Russian history; indeed, my honors thesis discussed the historical links between the Tsarist and Soviet militaries. I was intimately familiar with the campaigns and battles fought between the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany, and the horrific toll paid by the Soviet nation, whose casualties numbered in the tens of millions.

 

But it wasn’t until I had the opportunity to live and work in the Soviet Union, as part of a US inspection team stationed outside a Soviet missile factory in Votkinsk, tasked with implementing the provisions of the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces treaty, that I realized the extent to which this sacrifice marked the daily reality of the Soviet people. In downtown Votkinsk, there was a monument to the citizens who lost their lives during the war, as well as those who had been awarded the title “Hero of the Soviet Union” for their wartime service.

Everywhere one traveled in the Soviet Union there were similar monuments constructed in communities that had made it an essential reality of their being never to forget the sacrifices made by their version of the “Greatest Generation” in saving not only their fellow citizens, but much of Europe as well, from the scourge of Nazi Germany.

This remembrance continued even after the Soviet Union collapsed; the heritage of the Soviet Union was passed to the new Russian Federation, which sustained the duty of honoring those who had served. Russia celebrates this service on May 9 – “Victory Day” – marking the defeat of Nazi Germany. One of the great traditions of this celebration was the image of those aged veterans of that conflict, bedecked in their campaign medals, parading before a grateful nation.

Even as time and old age removed the Russian “Greatest Generation” from the society and nation they had served, the Russian people continued to honor them, with the children and grandchildren of the departed veterans marching in their stead, holding aloft a photograph of the veteran, part of what is called “The Immortal Regiment.” Unlike the Germans, the Russian people don’t forget.

 

Sadly, I cannot say the same thing about the American people. There will be no Victory in Europe celebration in the United States this year, just as there hasn’t been for years past. We have forgotten our “Greatest Generation” and the sacrifices they made for our future. There is no American “Immortal Regiment” of family members marching proudly down the main streets of US towns and cities honoring the cause for which these young men and women served. We have forgotten what they even fought for.

There was a time when the United States and Soviet Union fought together to overcome the scourge of Nazi Germany and the ideology it espoused. Today, when Russia is locked in a struggle with the progeny of Hitler’s Germany, in the form of the ideological descendants of the Ukrainian nationalist, Stepan Bandera – one would logically expect that the United States to be on Moscow’s side. 

Bander’s followers fought alongside German Nazis as members of the Waffen SS, slaughtering tens of thousands of innocent civilians, many of them Jewish. By rights, Washington should be ensuring that the hateful cause so many had given their lives and livelihoods to eradicate from Europe never again raised its evil banners on European soil.

Instead, the United States is providing succor to the present-day adherents of Bandera, and by extension, Hitler; their hateful ideology disguised as Ukrainian nationalism. American military personnel, whose traditions are born from the heroic sacrifices made by hundreds of thousands of their fellow soldiers, sailors, and airmen who gave their lives to defeat Nazi Germany, are today providing weapons and training to Ukrainians whose bodies and banners bear the markings of Hitler’s Third Reich.

On May 9, Russia will celebrate Victory Day, marking the 77th anniversary of the defeat of Nazi Germany. Unfortunately, the struggle against Nazi ideology continues to this day and, sadly, the United States finds itself on the wrong side of history, supporting those whom we once were sworn to defeat, while fighting against those whom we once called allies. I can’t help but think that Tom Brokow’s “Greatest Generation” would be ashamed by the actions of those for whom they sacrificed everything, and who have still proven insufficient for the task of honoring their memory in action and in deed.

 

 

 

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May 092022
 
 May 9, 2022  Posted by at 2:07 pm Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,  14 Responses »


M.C. Escher Gravitation 1952

 

 

Earlier today, I read that the Russian ambassador to Poland was hit by a paint bomb while laying a wreath for WWII fallen soldiers, with the culprits chanting: “fascist, fascist”! And I thought that is rich, on the day that Russia commemorates the 25-40 million Russian lives lost in WWII fighting fascism.

I don’t know how many of you ever saw Claude Lanzmann’s 1980’s 8-hour documentary “Shoah”, but I did at some point. It shook all of me, every molecule, and I will never watch it again. I come from the land of Anne Frank. What it told me was that nazism wasn’t just a German thing, it was the region, not the nation, it was where most Jewish people lived before Hitler and Goebbels came along.

Lanzmann interviewed scores of Polish people who were loudly proud of having pushed back Jews, trying to flee, onto the cattle trains bound for Auschwitz et al. That same mentality has prevailed in large parts of Ukraine as well over the by now 80 years or so. Just look at the map: that’s where this was happening. And the Russians defeated it in that part of the world, not western troops.

And when it was done, the role of the 25-40 million Russian deaths in it was denied in the west, because: communism vs capitalism. But of course Russia cannot just ignore or deny all those deaths, just because Hollywood wants to sell tickets to Saving Private Ryan. For Russia, WWII meant: never again. And for them that means something slightly different than for us. It’s not just never again fascism or nazism, it’s also that these two things are symbolic for having your motherland invaded from the west, and by the west. Never again. That is why Russia moved into Ukraine.

And they are convinced that NATO was getting ready, with the remaining nazis in Ukraine, to attack the Donbass and Crimea. Note: Russia has an excellent secret service. They’re not just guessing. 100s of 1000s of troops were amassing on their eastern border(s).

And now Zelensky is calling the Russians the nazis. That’s quite the about face. They lost all those lives fighting the nazis, only to become the nazis themselves. Labeled so by an actor who relies heavily on admitted, and tattooed, 2022 nazis to stay in power.

Western media, and governments, had a zillion predictions about what Putin would say today, but still there was no mobilization of Russians, and no total war declaration. They were all wrong, again. But it helped get the clickbait up! Still, he would have said it if we did not announce his intentions!, us who have a direct line into his brain…

I’ll leave you with three full reports from today, so you can make up your own mind- something I always try to do. First, RT, for which I cannot provide a link (banned because it’s propaganda!), then Guardian and then BBC.

 

 

Launching The Offensive Was “The Only Right Decision,” Russian President Insisted At The Annual Victory Day Parade (RT)

Russia’s military operation in Ukraine was a preemptive move against future aggression, President Vladimir Putin has outlined during his address at the Victory Day parade in Red Square in Moscow on Monday. Putin not only praised the achievement of the Soviet people during World War II, but also addressed the Kremlin’s reasons for the ongoing conflict between Moscow and Kiev. Russia had to act because a large-scale offensive against the breakaway republics in the eastern Donbass region was being planned, he claimed.

“We saw the military infrastructure unfolding [in Ukraine]; hundreds of foreign advisers starting their work; there were regular deliveries of the most modern weapons from NATO countries. The danger grew every day,” the president explained. “Russia gave a preemptive rebuff to aggression – this was a forced, timely and the only right decision by a sovereign, strong and independent country,” he added, referring to the launch of the military operation. “Despite all the disagreements in international relations, Russia has always advocated the creation of a system of equal and indivisible security,” Putin continued. He cited Moscow’s attempts to engage in dialogue on security guarantees with Washington late last year, which failed to yield results.

“NATO countries didn’t want to hear us, which means that, in fact, they harbored completely different plans, and we saw it,” he elaborated. There were open preparations for a punitive operation in the Donbass and “an invasion of our historical lands, including Crimea,” Putin insisted, adding that Kiev also announced plans to restore its nuclear capabilities. Since the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991, the US has increasingly spoken of ‘American exceptionalism,’ Putin pointed out. By spreading those ideas, Washington is “humiliating not only the whole world, but also its satellites, which have to pretend that they don’t notice anything and humbly accept it all. But we are a different country,” he insisted.

Russia has a different character, we’ll never give up on our love for our Motherland, on our faith and traditional values and customs of our ancestors; on respect for all peoples and cultures. But the West has apparently decided to “cancel” those values, with such “moral degradation becoming the basis for cynical falsifications of the history of World War II, and the incitement of Russophobia,” he said. “We know that American veterans, who wanted to come to the parade in Moscow, were basically banned from doing so,” Putin added. But he pointed out that Russia remembered the feats of the US servicemen and their contribution to victory in World War II.

Returning to the military operation in Ukraine, the president illustrated that “the self-defense forces of the Donbass Republics together with the Russian military are fighting on their land… for the Motherland, for its future, to make sure that no one forgets the lessons of World War II, so that there would be no place in the world for butchers, punishers, and Nazis.” Announcing the “special military operation” on February 24, Putin said that Moscow should not repeat the mistakes of the Soviet leadership of 1940-1941.

Back then, he explained, the USSR tried not to provoke Nazi Germany by “refraining or postponing the most urgent and obvious preparations it had to make to defend itself from an imminent attack.” As a result, the president continued, the moment was lost and the country was not prepared to counter the invasion. “The attempt to appease the aggressor ahead of the Great Patriotic War proved to be a mistake which came at a high cost for our people…We will not make this mistake the second time. We have no right to do so,” Putin said.

 

 

The essence: “We will not make this mistake the second time. We have no right to do so,”

 

 

Putin Ties Ukraine Invasion To Second World War In Victory Day Speech (Guardian)

Vladimir Putin has told Russian soldiers they are “fighting for the same thing their fathers and grandfathers did” as he used his Victory Day speech to justify his invasion of Ukraine. As Putin sought to rally his country through the memory of the second world war, the Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, pushed back in his own address from Kyiv. “We will not allow anyone to annex this victory, we will not allow it to be appropriated,” he said. The dual speeches marked a closely watched anniversary in eastern Europe, where Russia has used claims that it is fighting fascism to justify its bombardment of cities such as Mariupol and Kyiv and to launch the largest military campaign in Ukraine since the 1940s.

Prior to the speech, foreign officials had said Putin could use it to launch a full mobilisation of Russian troops or formally declare war in Ukraine, but there were no large policy announcements. Instead he suggested Russia was “forced” into the war by Nato and pledged to provide aid for the families of soldiers who had died in what the Kremlin is calling a “special operation”. Speaking at the 77th annual celebration of the defeat of Nazi Germany, the Russian president launched a defence of his war in Ukraine, pivoting from a recognition of Russia’s “greatest generation” to a description of how it was believed Ukraine was being armed by the west for an imminent attack on Crimea, the peninsula annexed by Russia in 2014.

“Nato countries did not want to listen to us,” Putin said. “They had different plans, and we saw it. They were planning an invasion into our historic lands, including Crimea … Russia gave a preemptive rebuff to aggression, it was a forced, timely and only right decision.” He also described the war as “sacred”. “The defence of the motherland, when its fate was being decided, has always been sacred,” Putin said, speaking of the second world war. “And now, you are fighting for our people in the Donbas. For the security of our homeland – Russia.” Russia provided fewer armoured vehicles than in past years during the Red Square parade on Monday and a planned flyover was cancelled, ostensibly due to weather conditions.

Putin did not bring up specific Russian victories in his speech, despite speculation his forces were engaged in a last-ditch effort to secure Mariupol and its Azovstal plant from the remaining Ukrainian defenders by 9 May. Instead, the Russian president addressed troop losses in the war, saying he had signed a new order that would give educational aid to the children of those killed. The Kremlin has been accused of seeking to cover up losses. After the sinking of the Moskva cruiser in the Black Sea, a number of families went public with claims the Russian military was trying to avoid confirming deaths onboard the ship.

“The death of each of our soldiers and officers is a grief for all of us and an irreparable loss for relatives and friends,” Putin said. “The state, regions, enterprises, public organisations will do everything to take care of such families and help them. We will provide special support to the children of the dead and wounded comrades. The presidential decree on this was signed today.”

The muted speech came in stark contrast to that delivered by Zelenskiy, who delivered a recorded address to a piano accompaniment as he walked through central Kyiv past anti-tank barricades. “This is not a war of two armies,” he said. “This is a war of two world views. A war waged by barbarians … who believe that their missiles can destroy our philosophy.” In the speech, Zelenskiy took aim at Russian claims Ukraine had sought to block 9 May celebrations, a focus of Russian state media in advance of the holiday.

“Our enemy dreamed that we would refuse to celebrate 9 May and the victory over Nazism,” said Zelenskiy. “So that the word ‘denazification’ will have a chance [to succeed] … On the day of victory over Nazism we are fighting for a new victory. The road to it is difficult but we have no doubt that we will win. “And very soon there will be two Victory Days in Ukraine. And some will not even have one left.”

 

 

“The defence of the motherland, when its fate was being decided, has always been sacred.”

 

 

Putin Says Russia Fighting For Motherland In Ukraine In Victory Day Speech (BBC)

Russian President Vladimir Putin said Russian forces in Ukraine were fighting for the future of their motherland, in his annual address marking victory over Nazi Germany in World War Two. Despite rumours he would make a major announcement his speech stuck largely to defending Russia’s invasion. He tied the war in Ukraine to victory in 1945, blaming the West and Nato for rejecting security demands. Almost 10 weeks into the invasion, civilian casualties continue to mount. Some 60 civilians are feared dead in the eastern town of Bilohorivka, after a Russian attack on a school where people were trying to escape bombardment.

Flanked by military top brass, Russia’s leader spoke of Ukrainians as fascists, repeating his false claim that the democratic government in Kyiv was run by neo-Nazis. Defending the motherland had always been sacred, he said, referring to the eastern region which is now the main focus of Russia’s assault: “Today you are fighting for our people in Donbas, for the security of Russia, our homeland.” He also made unfounded allegations against Nato and Ukraine and described the invasion as a pre-emptive rebuff: “They were preparing a punishing operation in Donbas to intrude on our historic lands. In Kyiv they were saying they might get nuclear weapons and Nato started exploring the lands close to us, and that became an obvious threat to us and our borders.”

Ukrainian presidential official Mykhailo Podoliak later responded, tweeting that there were no rational grounds for the war: “Nato countries were not going to attack Russia. Ukraine did not plan to attack Crimea.” There had been speculation that Russia’s president may be considering a change of military strategy, either a full declaration of war, rather than the current so-called special military operation, or a mobilisation of Russian men to boost the armed forces. Instead he said he was signing a decree for families of the dead and wounded in Ukraine to receive special support.

There was a minute of silence, including for the fallen in Ukraine, and he ended his 11-minute address with the words: “Glory to our armed forces – for Russia, for victory, hurrah”, at which the assembled forces responded with a big cheer. The parade was more modest than in recent years. Russian news agencies said 11,000 troops and 131 armoured vehicles took part in the event, including Russia’s widely feted Armata tanks, which have not been considered combat-ready for the war in Ukraine.

Not everything went according to plan. A flypast by the air force had to be cancelled shortly before the parade because of “weather conditions”, according to the Kremlin. Ahead of Victory Day, warplanes had rehearsed over Red Square in a Z-formation, the motif used by the Russian state during its war in Ukraine. Smaller parades took part in cities across Russia and the weather was also blamed for similar cancellations of flypasts in Yekaterinburg, Rostov and Novosibirsk. There was no mention in Vladimir Putin’s speech of Mariupol, the southern Ukrainian port city where a small group of Ukrainian forces continue to hold out in a maze of tunnels under the Azovstal steelworks.

But Russia was able to claim limited success on Monday in Kherson, the one Ukrainian city it can claim to have fully occupied. State-run news agency Ria Novosti showed footage of a Victory Day march in memory of those who died in the war. It was led by Volodymyr Saldo, a pro-Russian local official who has been named Kherson governor and is now being investigated for treason by Ukraine. What was then the Soviet Union lost 27 million lives during World War Two, with Ukraine accounting for eight million of them. In a separate message marking 9 May, President Volodymyr Zelensky said Nazis had been expelled in 1945 and Ukraine would not allow anyone to “annex this victory”. Very soon, he said, Ukraine would have two victory days to celebrate.

 

 

 

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Apr 262022
 


Andy Warhol Ingrid Bergman 1983

 

Tucker: You Just Became A Little More Powerful (CTH)
Taking It Back From Wall Street Is the Correct First Step: Jack Dorsey (Var.)
Media/Politics Collusion Destroyed Trust in Public Health: Dr. Ben Carson (ET)
Shocks to the System (Kunstler)
US A ‘Co-belligerent’ In Ukraine War (Carden)
Kremlin Condemns Blinken Visit To Ukraine & US Arms Shipments (ZH)
The Ukraine War is a Racket (Ron Paul)
The Moskva Riddle (Escobar)
Vaccine Effectiveness Falls To MINUS-391% (DE)
Heart Inflammation More Prevalent Among Vaccinated Than Unvaccinated (ET)
The CDC’s Mask Mandate Is Dead and Won’t Be Back (TH)
Most Young Adults Say US Has A ‘Mental Health Crisis’ (Hill)
Durham Has Hundreds Of E-mails Between Fusion GPS And Reporters (TFog)
Assange’s Fate Can’t Be Left In The Hands Of Priti Patel (John Rees)

 

 

Everyone has an opinion on Elon Musk buying Twitter. I’ll add mine: he couldn’t make it any worse than it is.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mass graves

 

 

 

 

“There is opportunity for much more understanding of how the social media platforms operate just by permitting increased transparency.”

Tucker: You Just Became A Little More Powerful (CTH)

There is an angle to this move which looms. If the doomsday predictions of Twitter’s Thursday anticipated first quarter financial earnings are correct, it is entirely possible that Musk is about to take a massive financial hit. Some, including myself, who understand the financial black hole that Twitter’s business model represents, have suspicions that Twitter may be hung around Musk’s neck like a millstone as he’s thrown into the deep state sea of social media. It will be interesting to see how quickly Musk responds to those Q1 financials. [NOTE: I foresee be a small user fee in the future]


News Release – “Free speech is the bedrock of a functioning democracy, and Twitter is the digital town square where matters vital to the future of humanity are debated,” said Mr. Musk. “I also want to make Twitter better than ever by enhancing the product with new features, making the algorithms open source to increase trust, defeating the spam bots, and authenticating all humans. Twitter has tremendous potential – I look forward to working with the company and the community of users to unlock it.” Tucker Carlson outlined the political ramifications surrounding breaking one of the big social media platforms away from the deep state control agents.

President Donald Trump will not be returning to Twitter, he is sticking with TruthSocial which is nearing completion. “I am not going on Twitter, I am going to stay on TRUTH,” Trump told Fox News. “I hope Elon buys Twitter because he’ll make improvements to it and he is a good man, but I am going to be staying on TRUTH.” There are a lot of downstream ramifications that have yet to surface as a result of the Musk-Twitter purchase. Will users find out what the rules are for the specific network containers they have been assigned to? Will the scale of simultaneous user data-processing be made public along with the algorithms that Twitter uses once you have been given a specific container assignment?


There is opportunity for much more understanding of how the social media platforms operate just by permitting increased transparency. There’s a possibility once the container assignment process is made public, people will then start to inquire about Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and other Big Tech platform processes that divide people based on arbitrarily determined viewpoints. Most social media users do not understand the technology behind the platform they are using, although a greater awareness is ongoing.

Read more …

@jack was running the joint when Trump et al were banned, and all the “non-compliant” Covid doctors.

Taking It Back From Wall Street Is the Correct First Step: Jack Dorsey (Var.)

Twitter co-founder and former CEO Jack Dorsey commented on Elon Musk’s acquisition of the social media platform on Monday night, kicking off his thread with Radiohead’s song “Everything In Its Right Place.” “I love Twitter. Twitter is the closest thing we have to a global consciousness,” he wrote. After stepping down from Twitter in November 2021, Dorsey continued to sit on the company’s board of directors. The board approved Musk’s $44 billion acquisition Monday morning. “The idea and service is all that matters to me, and I will do whatever it takes to protect both. Twitter as a company has always been my sole issue and my biggest regret. It has been owned by Wall Street and the ad model. Taking it back from Wall Street is the correct first step,” his Twitter thread continued.


“In principle, I don’t believe anyone should own or run Twitter. It wants to be a public good at a protocol level, not a company. Solving for the problem of it being a company however, Elon is the singular solution I trust. I trust his mission to extend the light of consciousness,” Dorsey wrote. “Elon’s goal of creating a platform that is “maximally trusted and broadly inclusive” is the right one. This is also @paraga’s goal, and why I chose him. Thank you both for getting the company out of an impossible situation. This is the right path…I believe it with all my heart. “I’m so happy Twitter will continue to serve the public conversation. Around the world, and into the stars!,” Dorsey wrote.

Musk: Asphyxiation of society

Read more …

“..we’ve gotten into a system where we have the media in cahoots with the executive branch, sort of overlooking all the other safeguards that we have in our system..”

Media/Politics Collusion Destroyed Trust in Public Health: Dr. Ben Carson (ET)

In the wake of a court decision to end federal mask mandates, Dr. Ben Carson, former U.S. secretary of the Housing and Urban Development and chief of pediatric neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital, said he is glad there are checks and balances in our system of government but in order to truly restore trust in public health agencies, the mainstream media needs to be held accountable for colluding with the executive branch. “What we’ve done is we’ve gotten into a system where we have the media in cahoots with the executive branch, sort of overlooking all the other safeguards that we have in our system,” Carson told The Epoch Times. “And as a result of that, what we’ve done has completely destroyed the trust of the people in the CDC, the NIH, the government health system. It’s going to take a very long time to get that trust back.”

A Trump-appointed district judge struck down federal mask mandates in a ruling on Monday, saying that the CDC exceeded its authority with the mask mandate and inappropriately did not seek public comment before imposing the order. In addition, Carson said the Biden administration’s decision to end the CDC health rule, Title 42—which limits the entry of illegal immigrants into the country during the pandemic—but at the same time having its health agency heads calling to keep mask mandates for U.S. citizens doesn’t make sense and is divergent thinking. “There is no justification for getting rid of Title 42 on the one hand, and telling us we need to extend the mask mandates,” said Carson, adding that the public has to push back for agencies to actually follow the science, instead of ideology.

“If you have an executive branch that just begins to dictate, without any pushback, we’ve got to a very bad place. It’s too bad that a federal court system had to come in and bring some common sense into the discussion,” said Carson. “But the fact of the matter is, we all know, from multitudinous data, that the masks aren’t doing very much, particularly in things like airplanes that already have HEPA filters.” The neurosurgeon said common sense and scientific data should drive public health policies, including a broad range of treatments for COVID-19 and not just vaccinations.

“[Hydroxychloroquine] was roundly criticized by our government officials. So was ivermectin and some other therapeutics that work perfectly fine in other parts of the world. Why would they work in other parts of the world and not work here?” said Carson. “Why is it, in Western Africa, there’s almost no COVID? Because they take hydroxychloroquine as an anti-malarial. Why in southern India is there almost no COVID? Because they take ivermectin. Maybe they’re not taking it specifically for COVID, but look at the results.

Read more …

“My guess: they tried to persuade Mr. Zelenskyy to throw in the towel. He may be too desperate and crazy to listen, but it’s truly game-over.”

Shocks to the System (Kunstler)

There is something about being detached from reality that makes it hard to go about your everyday business. In the quaint asylums of yore, it was understood that a few shocks to the system could bring lunatics out of a fugue state of derangement — a cold water plunge… an insulin hot-shot to induce convulsions… some electrodes placed artfully on select regions of the brain…. It looks like America is about to be treated to some shocks. Will they break the mass formation psychosis that styles itself unironically as “progressive politics?”

The first shock will be the painful recognition that Ukraine is not prevailing against Russia’s Operation Z, despite the combined efforts of the US news media and the Intel Community to put over that narrative. True, it took Russia more than a few days to overcome Ukraine’s NATO-fortified defenses, but now most of that has been neutralized, and we’re into the final weeks heading towards resolution — which will be a Ukraine that is unable to make any more trouble in that corner of the world. That’s right, hard as it is to accept, Operation Z came down on Ukraine because it misbehaved badly, egged-on by delusional war-gamers in Washington, who could only pretend to support Ukraine once the real action started.

No amount of chanting Putin-Putin-Putin availed to stop the grinding Russian advance. State’s Antony Blinken and DoD’s General Austin were in Kiev over the weekend on a face-saving mission. My guess: they tried to persuade Mr. Zelenskyy to throw in the towel. He may be too desperate and crazy to listen, but it’s truly game-over. The Russians will treat him with kid gloves, perhaps give him leave to settle in Miami and enjoy the American dream with the fortune he has squirreled away. There will be changes in the map. Ukraine will sink back into peaceful obscurity while the US and Europe have to struggle with the impoverishing blowback from wrecking the global trade settlement system.

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“likely we have a limited footprint on the ground in Ukraine, but under Title 50, not Title 10..”

US A ‘Co-belligerent’ In Ukraine War (Carden)

Conversations over the past week with current and former US officials about whether, to their knowledge, there is any real debate inside President Joe Biden’s administration over the approach it is taking in Ukraine has produced only slight variations of the same answer: “Not really.” As of now, what the Biden policy amounts to is a replay along the lines of president Franklin D Roosevelt’s policy toward the war in Europe from 1939 to December 1941, during which the US was a co-belligerent all but in name. In their public statements, Biden and his Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin seem intent on obfuscating the true extent of American involvement. A story in the defense-industry-sponsored Politico quoted unnamed US officials as saying “military options in Ukraine aren’t on the table – echoing Biden’s repeated position of not wanting to spark World War III.”

If taken at face value, Biden’s policy would seem to be at odds with itself. Not wanting to start a third World War is a prudent, appropriate policy objective, but if that’s the goal, the administration is taking the long way around, because whether they admit it or not, the US is, and has been for some time, a co-belligerent in the war. [..] The open spigot of funding has naturally attracted the attention of the defense industry, and last week, the chief executives of Raytheon, Lockheed Martin, Boeing, Northrop Grumman, General Dynamics and L3Harris Technologies met at the Pentagon with Deputy Defense Secretary Kathleen Hicks. But US involvement goes deeper than arms sales and intelligence sharing.

A Pentagon official who requested anonymity told me it is “likely we have a limited footprint on the ground in Ukraine, but under Title 50, not Title 10,” meaning US intelligence operatives and paramilitaries – but not regular military. Bruce Fein, a constitutional expert and former associate attorney general in the Ronald Reagan administration, told me this week that in his view, “the United States and several NATO members have become co-belligerents with Ukraine against Russia by systematic and massive assistance to its military forces to defeat Russia.” According to Fein, the US and its NATO allies are now vulnerable to attack by “an enemy belligerent,” meaning Russia, because of their “systematic or substantial violations of a neutral’s duties of impartiality and non-participation in the conflict.”

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“The Kremlin has also said it views any Western military aid entering the country as a “legitimate target”.

Kremlin Condemns Blinken Visit To Ukraine & US Arms Shipments (ZH)

Moscow has reacted to the Sunday visit of top US officials to Kiev where they met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in which Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin discussed specific weapons systems to soon be transferred into Ukraine, also as Zelensky and his team reportedly requested heavier weaponry and in larger quantities. “What the Americans are doing is pouring oil on the flames,” Russia’s ambassador to the US Anatoly Antonov told Rossiya 24 TV channel. “I see only an attempt to raise the stakes, to aggravate the situation, to see more losses.” Antonov confirmed that the Kremlin recently delivered another diplomatic note of protest to the US condemning the arms shipments and formally requesting their cessation, but said no response has been given.

Instead, the “response” came in the form of the Pentagon chief meeting face-to-face to Zelensky while saying “we have the mindset that we want to help them win.” And specifying further the purpose of the hundreds of millions of dollars in approved military aid making its way to Ukraine: “We believe that they can win if they have the right equipment,” Defense Secretary Austin said, and added: “the right support, and we’re going to do everything we can … to ensure that gets to them.” Austin in statements given to the press after the Zelensky meeting went so far as to say Washington’s strategy is to see a “weakened” Russia.

“We want to see Russia weakened to the degree that it can’t do the kinds of things that it has done in invading Ukraine,” the Pentagon chief said. “It has already lost a lot of military capability, and a lot of its troops quite frankly” – he added, speaking of the Russian military. But Antonov in his Monday statements emphasized further: “We stressed the unacceptability of this situation when the United States of America pours weapons into Ukraine, and we demanded an end to this practice.” The Kremlin has also said it views any Western military aid entering the country as a “legitimate target”.

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“By many accounts these shipments of weapons like the Javelin anti-tank missile (jointly manufactured by Raytheon and Lockheed Martin) are getting blown up as soon as they arrive in Ukraine. This doesn’t bother Raytheon at all”

The Ukraine War is a Racket (Ron Paul)

“War is a racket, wrote US Maj. General Smedley Butler in 1935. He explained: “A racket is best described, I believe, as something that is not what it seems to the majority of the people. Only a small ‘inside’ group knows what it is about. It is conducted for the benefit of the very few, at the expense of the very many. Out of war a few people make huge fortunes.” Gen. Butler’s observation describes the US/NATO response to the Ukraine war perfectly. The propaganda continues to portray the war in Ukraine as that of an unprovoked Goliath out to decimate an innocent David unless we in the US and NATO contribute massive amounts of military equipment to Ukraine to defeat Russia. As is always the case with propaganda, this version of events is manipulated to bring an emotional response to the benefit of special interests.

One group of special interests profiting massively on the war is the US military-industrial complex. Raytheon CEO Greg Hayes recently told a meeting of shareholders that, “Everything that ‘s being shipped into Ukraine today, of course, is coming out of stockpiles, either at DOD or from our NATO allies, and that’s all great news. Eventually we’ll have to replenish it and we will see a benefit to the business.” He wasn’t lying. Raytheon, along with Lockheed Martin and countless other weapons manufacturers are enjoying a windfall they have not seen in years. The US has committed more than three billion dollars in military aid to Ukraine. They call it aid, but it is actually corporate welfare: Washington sending billions to arms manufacturers for weapons sent overseas.

By many accounts these shipments of weapons like the Javelin anti-tank missile (jointly manufactured by Raytheon and Lockheed Martin) are getting blown up as soon as they arrive in Ukraine. This doesn’t bother Raytheon at all. The more weapons blown up by Russia in Ukraine, the more new orders come from the Pentagon. Former Warsaw Pact countries now members of NATO are in on the scam as well. They’ve discovered how to dispose of their 30-year-old Soviet-made weapons and receive modern replacements from the US and other western NATO countries. While many who sympathize with Ukraine are cheering, this multi-billion dollar weapons package will make little difference. As former US Marine intelligence officer Scott Ritter said on the Ron Paul Liberty Report last week, “I can say with absolute certainty that even if this aid makes it to the battlefield, it will have zero impact on the battle. And Joe Biden knows it.”

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“..If the Russian Ministry of Defense finds out that NATO did it, they will let loose all the dogs from Hell on NATO, as in “asymmetrical, lethal and fast”.

The Moskva Riddle (Escobar)

Neither NATO nor Russia is telling us what really happened with the Moskva, the legendary admiral ship of the Black Sea fleet. NATO because in theory, they know. Moscow, for its part, made it clear they are not saying anything until they can be sure what happened. One thing is certain. If the Russian Ministry of Defense finds out that NATO did it, they will let loose all the dogs from Hell on NATO, as in “asymmetrical, lethal and fast”. [..] it’s hard to believe the Neptune/Bayraktar fairytale angle. After all, as we’ve seen, the Russian fleet had established a multidimensional surveillance/defense layer in the direction of Odessa. The Moskva was near Odessa, closer to Romania.

A year ago, the source maintains, a new phased array locator was installed on it: the illumination range is 500 km. According to the standard Ukrainian narrative, first the Moskva was hit by a drone, and the locators and antennas were smashed. The Moskva was half blind. Then – according to the Ukrainian narrative – they launched two Neptune cruise missiles from the shore. Guidance was carried out by NATO’s Orion, which was hanging over Romania. The missiles zoomed in on the ship with the homing heads turned off, so that the radiation beam would not be detected. So we have guidance by NATO’s Orion, transmitting the exact coordinates, leading to two hits, and subsequent detonation of ammunition (that’s the part acknowledged by the Russian Ministry of Defense).

The Moskva was on combat duty 100-120 km away from Odessa – controlling the airspace within a radius of 250-300 km. So in fact it was ensuring the overlap of the southern half of Moldova, the space from Izmail to Odessa and part of Romania (including the port of Constanta). Its positioning could not be more strategic. Moskva was interfering with NATO’s covert transfer of military aircraft (helicopters and fighter jets) from Romania to Ukraine. It was being watched 24/7. NATO air reconnaissance was totally on it. As the Moskva “killer”, NATO may have not chosen the Neptune, as spread by Ukrainian propaganda; the source points to the fifth-generation NSM PKR (Naval Strike Missile, with a range of 185 km, developed by Norway and the Americans.)

He describes the NSM as “able to reach the target along a programmed route thanks to the GPS-adjusted INS, independently find the target by flying up to it at an altitude of 3-5 meters. When reaching the target, the NSM maneuvers and deploys electronic interference. A highly sensitive thermal imager is used as a homing system, which independently determines the most vulnerable places of the target ship.” As a direct consequence of hitting the Moskva, NATO managed to reopen an air corridor for the transfer of aircraft to the airfields of Chernivtsi, Transcarpathian and Ivano-Frankivsk regions.

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Go get yer booster…

Vaccine Effectiveness Falls To MINUS-391% (DE)

Official data published by the UK Health Security Agency confirms Covid-19 vaccine effectiveness against infection has fallen to minus-391% among triple jabbed 60-69-year-olds, and between minus-298% and minus-324% among those aged 30 to 59. All other age groups have also suffered a significant drop in vaccine effectiveness with figures showing all triple vaccinated adults now between 3 and 5 times more likely to be infected with Covid-19 than unvaccinated adults. The following chart shows the total number of Covid-19 cases by vaccination status in England between 3rd Jan and 27th March 2022, separated by age group and week. The data has been extracted from the the Week 5, (page 43), Week 9 (page 41) and Week 13 (page 41) UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) Covid-19 Vaccine Surveillance reports –

[..] cases have been highest among all age groups who are triple vaccinated since at least the turn of the year. This data on its own at least shows the Covid-19 injections clearly do not prevent infection. But the UKHSA also provide us with further figures that indicate something is seriously wrong, and those figures are the Covid-19 case-rate per 100,000 individuals by vaccination status. [..] Here’s a chart showing the real-world Covid-19 vaccine effectiveness among the triple vaccinated population by age-group and week in England between 3rd January and 27th March 2022.

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This is old news treated as new. We’re standing still.

Heart Inflammation More Prevalent Among Vaccinated Than Unvaccinated (ET)

Heart inflammation requiring hospital care was more common among people who received COVID-19 vaccines than those who did not, according to a new study of tens of millions of Europeans. Rates of myocarditis or pericarditis, two types of heart inflammation, are above the levels in an unvaccinated cohort, pegged at 38 per 100,000 after receipt of a second dose of a vaccine built on messenger RNA (mRNA) technology in males aged 16 to 24—the group studies have shown are most at risk of the post-vaccination condition—researchers with health agencies in Finland, Denmark, Sweden, and Norway found.

“These extra cases among men aged 16–24 correspond to a 5 times increased risk after Comirnaty and 15 times increased risk after Spikevax compared to unvaccinated,” Dr. Rickard Ljung, a professor and physician at the Swedish Medical Products Agency and one of the principal investigators of the study, told The Epoch Times in an email. Comirnaty is the brand name for Pfizer’s vaccine while Spikevax is the brand name for Moderna’s jab. Rates were also higher among the age group for those who received any dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, both of which utilize mRNA technology. And rates were elevated among vaccinated males of all ages after the first or second dose, except for the first dose of Moderna’s shot for those 40 or older, and females 12- to 15-years-old.

Researchers pulled data from national health registers, analyzing 23.1 million people aged 12 or older. The analysis was of data from Dec. 27, 2020, to incidence of myocarditis or pericarditis, or the end of the study time period, which was Oct. 5, 2021. “The risks of myocarditis and pericarditis were highest within the first 7 days of being vaccinated, were increased for all combinations of mRNA vaccines, and were more pronounced after the second dose,” researchers wrote in the study, which was published by the Journal of the American Medical Association following peer review.

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“Federal Judge Kathryn Mizelle did what a federal judge is supposed to do—she reined in the CDC when it went too far.”

The CDC’s Mask Mandate Is Dead and Won’t Be Back (TH)

Federal Judge Kathryn Mizelle did what a federal judge is supposed to do—she reined in the CDC when it went too far. She struck down the mask mandate for mass transit. Most travelers rejoiced and said goodbye to masks, perhaps for good. But not everyone was happy. The ruling sent COVID doomsdayers into panic mode. There was a flurry of claims that Mizelle made an improper decision because TheScience™ is not for the courts – or so they say. Doctor “TheScience™” Anthony Fauci himself was quick to condemn the ruling while exposing his legal ignorance at the same time. “We are concerned…about courts getting involved in things that are unequivocally public health decisions…This is a CDC issue. It should not have been a court issue.”

Fauci is wrong. He exposed his ignorance of how American government works. This was not a ruling based on science. Judge Mizelle did not issue a public health order – she issued a legal order. And as much as Fauci may dislike it, Mizelle got it exactly right! Fauci and TheExperts™ will not want to hear that her ruling is ironclad and will hold on appeal. Public health policies made by government agencies are not merely scientific actions. They’re government actions. Government actions are subject to review by courts when they violate federal law. Federal agencies are creatures of statute and are bound by law to operate within the law imposed by Congress. Agencies are not separate entities that may act as they wish. Their authority is limited to what Congress grants them.

So the CDC is governed by Congress – not by any President – and certainly not by career bureaucrats like Fauci. Judge Mizelle made that expressly clear in her ruling. Specifically, she addressed how the CDC and government officials violated the Administrative Procedures Act (APA) in issuing this mandate. The issue was not whether masks work to prevent the spread of Covid-19. Nor is the issue whether it is wise policy to order millions of traveling Americans to strap a piece of cloth over their breathing and talking holes (except when chomping Biscoff cookies or chugging chardonnay.) The real issue was whether the CDC had legal authority to issue such an edict in the first place – and if so, did it issue the rule as prescribed by law. The answer to both questions is: no.

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“..63 percent of young adults experienced symptoms of depression or anxiety in June 2020..”

Most Young Adults Say US Has A ‘Mental Health Crisis’ (Hill)

Nearly three-quarters of young adults across the country believe “the United States has a mental health crisis,” according to a new poll. A survey released Tuesday by the Institute for Politics at Harvard Kennedy School found that only six percent of survey respondents disagreed with the idea that the U.S. is undergoing a mental health crisis. 52% of young adults surveyed reported experiencing feelings of depression and hopelessness, and nearly a quarter said they had thought about self-harm. The latter represents a four percent decline from a year earlier when 28 percent of survey respondents said they thought about harming themselves. More than a quarter said they know someone who has committed suicide. The Spring 2022 survey measured the responses of more than 2,000 U.S. adults between the ages of 18 and 29 from March 15-20.


The Harvard poll adds to a growing body of research regarding the decline of mental health in the U.S. during the coronavirus pandemic. A recent study revealed that nearly half of young adults experienced mental health symptoms during the pandemic’s second year. Researchers at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) used a sample of 2,809 adults ages 18-25 years from the U.S. Census Bureau’s Household Pulse Survey data to evaluate the scope of anxiety and depression symptoms from June through early July 2021. They found 48 percent of young adults reported mental health symptoms. Meanwhile, 39 percent of the population with symptoms said they used prescription medications, although more than a third reported being unable to receive needed counseling treatment. The teams’ findings showed a decline from a year prior. A study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found 63 percent of young adults experienced symptoms of depression or anxiety in June 2020.

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What must the pressure on him be like?

Durham Has Hundreds Of E-mails Between Fusion GPS And Reporters (TFog)

Durham also destroys the declarations of John Podesta and Robby Mook on behalf of Hillary for America, stating Mook has stated Perkins Coie was to handle and oversee “international” opposition research. Mook also received “general updates concerning” these findings though he says he was unaware who had been specifically retained. As to Joffe’s privilege arguments? They fail because “Perkins Coie hired Fusion GPS to assist HFA and the DNC, not [Joffe].” Today’s filing follows a series of interesting developments disclosed in these last few days. On Friday, April 22, attorneys for Michael Sussmann filed this motion relating to evidentiary issues. I’ll spare you the long and boring legal arguments (your humble author favors brevity) and get to the good stuff: the Special Counsel has issued trial subpoenas to the Clinton Campaign and the Democratic National Committee.

The reason for calling the Clinton Campaign and DNC as trial witnesses is to get them to testify to their assertion of attorney-client privilege under oath. As you might recall, the Clinton Campaign, the DNC, Fusion GPS, Perkins Coie, and Rodney Joffe have all made appearances in this case in order to fight against the production of records to Durham. We reported on that story here, stating Durham requested the court require production of records that included “emails and attachments between and among” Perkins Coie, Rodney Joffe, and Fusion GPS.” On behalf of the Clinton Campaign, Robby Mook (Hillary’s campaign manager) and John Podesta (the Clinton Campaign chair, who has already been interviewed by Durham) submitted declarations in support of the position that Fusion GPS was assisting with “legal services and legal advice to [Hillary for America].”

One would rightly assume, then, that those trial subpoenas were issued to Robby Mook and John Podesta. Last Friday also saw this filing by Special Counsel Durham which also addressed evidentiary issues. It explained a “joint venture” starting in June 2016 by Rodney Joffe and his team of researchers to collect derogatory information on Trump and his associates. Durham described the goal of the joint venture to be: “to gather and disseminate derogatory non-public information regarding the internet activities of [Trump] and his associates.

This “joint venture” – what is also called a conspiracy – continued into August 2016, where: Sussmann, Rodney Joffe, and “agents of the Clinton Campaign” met at the Perkins Coie office of Mark Elias where they discussed the same Alfa Bank allegations that Sussmann would give to the FBI. “The evidence will show that at the meeting, the parties agreed to conduct work in the hope that it would benefit the Clinton Campaign, namely, gathering and disseminating purportedly derogatory data regarding Trump and his associates’ internet activities.”

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And don’t you forget it:

“The fact that there is currently no ongoing court case means that Patel has a purely political decision to make.”

Assange’s Fate Can’t Be Left In The Hands Of Priti Patel (John Rees)

Priti Patel, the uber-conservative Home Secretary, is about to make a life-or-death decision: whether or not to send Julian Assange to the United States to face charges of espionage. If found guilty, he could be sentenced to a maximum of 175 years in jail. It is not an exaggeration to say that, even if he served a small fraction of that time, he would likely die in prison. The fact that there is currently no ongoing court case means that Patel has a purely political decision to make. Should she sanction an application for extradition when the charges being brought equate investigative journalism with spying? Should she allow that the US 1917 Espionage Act, under which the charges are being made, can for the very first time be used against a journalist?

Should the US be allowed to extend the reach of its archaic spying laws to other countries and to a journalist who is not a US citizen? These are far from the only fundamental questions that Patel should consider. She might want to consider the irregularities of the trial. These include the fact that the lead prosecution witness has admitted that he lied in court, the discovery that that the CIA spied on the defendant and his lawyers, and that the CIA also discussed kidnapping and assassinating Assange in London. She might also want to consider whether an Extradition Treaty that has allowed 200 individuals to be taken from the UK to the US but only allowed eleven to pass the other way is fit for purpose.

In any normal case any, let alone all, of these issues might be enough for a Home Secretary to declare the extradition request void. But this is no ordinary case and no ordinary Home Secretary, even by the House of Horror standards of previous Tory Home Secretaries. This case is above all a political revenge attack on Julian Assange for revealing material which the US government found embarrassing about the Afghan and Iraq wars, about Guantanamo Bay prison, and about US diplomatic manoeuvres. And this is the crux of the matter: should journalists only be allowed to report government press hand-outs and corporate PR statements, the news the rich and powerful want to be heard, or should they have the freedom to report matters which are otherwise hidden from the public gaze?

No harm was suffered by any individual as a result of WikiLeaks publications. That much was admitted in court by the US lawyers. No foreign state supplied or was given privileged access to material published by WikiLeaks. The sole beneficiaries were the public who learned facts of the gravest importance which they would otherwise not have known. It is for that public service that Julian Assange is spending his fourth year in Belmarsh High Security Prison and now faces extradition to the US. Priti Patel is an ultra-hawk and a devotional worshipper of US power. She is currently engaged in attempting to send desperate refugees seeking asylum to Rwanda, and is highly unlikely to do anything but sign the extradition order.

But she can, and has been, politically embarrassed in the past. Both her off-piste illegal lobbying of Israel and the bullying of staff in her own department have damaged her and the government. Mass lobbying of Patel now can have the same effect and prepare the ground for the next stage in the legal battle. This is essential because Patel does not yet have the final say. Even if she signs the extradition order Julian Assange’s lawyers have one more chance to reverse the extradition in the UK courts. They can and will appeal the elements of the original Magistrates Court ruling which turned down their original case against extradition.

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Safety profile

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Real nazis
https://twitter.com/i/status/1518707848863264770

 

 

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

 

 

 

Apr 192022
 


Jean Metzinger The blue bird 1912-13

 

Thralldom and Its Uses (Jim Kunstler)
The Great Acquiescence — Glory to Ukraine (Patrick Lawrence)
The Importance of Ignorance in Info Wars (Lauria)
Ukraine and the Profits of War (TomD)
American Commissars (Chris Hedges)
Lockdown-Heavy States Had Some of the Worst Health Results (McMaken)
Second Global Covid-19 Summit Scheduled For May 12 (R.)
Hunter Biden’s China Business Deals Should Raise ‘Alarm Bells’ (ET)
Jack Dorsey Lashes Out At Twitter Board As Elon Musk Tries To Buy Company (DW)
Macron Should Prepare For A Brutal Shock After Latest Polls (Exp.)
EU’s 18 Year Old Embezzlement Charges to Derail Le Pen Presidential Bid (SN)
From Rachel Carson to Monsanto: The Silence of Spring (OffG)

 

 

Gonzalo
https://twitter.com/i/status/1515975497397661699

 

 

 

 

Maersheimer

 

 

Azov

 

 

 

 

“Collectively going crazy has been a luxury we can’t afford anymore.”

Thralldom and Its Uses (Jim Kunstler)

America has had enough of being in thrall, especially to figures and forces dedicated to our destruction. This spring is the beginning of a national life with less stuff, including, looks like, stuff to eat. That will sure enough put folks in touch with something real, and then they will naturally have to do something about it. Centralized control of the population via trackable digital money is the last thing that will avail in the face of hunger and desperation. In fact, that is just another set of empty wishes and promises. The reality is that centralized government, such as the one in Washington DC, is less and less in control of anything — except the manufactured pretense that it can fix the problems of less stuff and decaying money.

The federal government is increasingly impotent, unable to discharge its basic obligations to preserve public order and safety. Its previous attempt to fix something was the response to Covid-19, which has culminated in the fiasco of the mRNA vaccines, now pending and tending toward an astounding wave of early deaths among those in thrall to the transparently dishonest promises of officialdom (“safe and effective”). That’s the trouble with thrall. It narrows the field-of-vision so badly, you can’t see what’s coming at you indirectly, like: hardship and death. The country has been in serious trouble for more than a decade. Cavalcades of bad choices — and then lying to ourselves about these bad choices — has shoved us well over the edge of our cherished expectations. One way out, then, is to simply refuse to remain in thrall to officialdom and the manufactured bullshit that is its only product.

We are lately in thrall to the melodrama in Ukraine, largely engineered by figures and forces in our own government and for their own ends, which look suspiciously at odds with the nation’s actual interests (the nation being us, its people). Perhaps this illustrates the widening gulf between the slouching beast government has become and the people trying to operate their lives and destinies under it. No food for you, no fertilizers for future food for you, no spare parts for you, no free speech for you, no social or economic role for you, no health for you, and (watch it, now!) soon no life for you. Collectively going crazy has been a luxury we can’t afford anymore. You fell for RussiaGate and it kept you in thrall for years. You fell for the Adam Schiff orchestrated Ukraine phone call impeachment gambit. You fell for the Covid scare and the dangerously defective vaccines forced on you. You fell for the fraud-drenched election of the empty vessel known as “Joe Biden.” Don’t fall for the invitation to World War Three.

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“Whoever wins the war in Ukraine, the non–West will win. Whoever wins, the 21st century will win, burying the mostly awful 20th at last. As for Americans, we have already lost.”

The Great Acquiescence — Glory to Ukraine (Patrick Lawrence)

Since the Russiagate farrago overcame liberal America in 2016, there has been much debate as to whether our McCarthyesque circumstances are as bad as, similar to, or not as bad as things got during the Cold War decades. This no longer seems to me the useful question. In various important ways we have passed beyond even the worst of the Cold War’s many dreadful features. Our better reference is Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World, wherein the English novelist pictured a society of incubated beings — programmed from birth, hooked on a happiness-inducing drug called soma, devoid of everything we now consider human, wholly incapable of connection, of responsibility, and, indeed, desiring neither.

Infantile gratification is all that matters to those populating the World State Huxley imagined — such as anything matters. We are not there yet, let’s not exaggerate. But we ought to honor Huxley for his prescience, for we are heading in the direction of his unlivable world of mind-deprived children watched over by a small, chosen, diabolic elite. I am not surprised that it is Ukraine that brings us to what I consider a collective psychological crisis. After 30 years of post–Cold War triumphalism, Washington has decided to use Ukraine and its people in a go-for-broke attempt finally to subvert Russia. Stepping back for a better look, this is the decisive event in the imperium’s confrontation with the 21st century — its grand roll of the dice, its now-or-never moment.

Broke it will be when all this is over, however far in the future that will prove. A little like Cú Chulainn, the Irish hero who drowned swinging his sword in a rage against the incoming tide, we cannot win this one. And we are falling apart as the realization of our loss arrives subliminally among us. Whoever wins the war in Ukraine, the non–West will win. Whoever wins, the 21st century will win, burying the mostly awful 20th at last. As for Americans, we have already lost.

Putin on Ukraine

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“..the Soviet Union destroyed 80 percent of the Wehrmacht in WWII..”

“They do not know what a revival of Nazism means to the Russian people or even that there is a revival of Nazism in Ukraine..”

The Importance of Ignorance in Info Wars (Lauria)

There is fertile ground to wage information warfare in the U.S. on Ukraine. In all of America’s wars, ignorance of foreign affairs plays a big role. Americans’ lack of knowledge of other countries is compounded by the fact that the U.S. has never been invaded, except briefly by the British in 1812, and that the U.S. itself began as an invasion by Europeans in which they wiped out the indigenous population, and then later invaded Mexico and then Spanish possessions and frankly, have never stopped invading other nations. The lack of knowledge of this history makes Americans vulnerable to propaganda cloaking American expansionism. In the context of the Ukraine war this ignorance plays an important part in the susceptibility of the American public to war propaganda.

Americans generally don’t understand the psyche of Russia, which was invaded numerous times, particularly by the biggest European powers in the 19th and 20th centuries. They generally do not know, because they are never told, that the Soviet Union destroyed 80 percent of the Wehrmacht in WWII. They do not know what a revival of Nazism means to the Russian people or even that there is a revival of Nazism in Ukraine because it is whitewashed out of the corporate media story. Under the guise of respectability and objectivity, the news media of the U.S. and Europe, which is closely aligned with their governments, has played an important role in the information war by deliberately omitting three crucial facts from their Ukraine war narrative, which completely changes the picture.

Media is leaving out the role of U.S. in the 2014 coup in Kiev; that an 8-year civil war has been fought in the eastern Donbass region against Russian-speaking Ukrainians who resisted the coup (Russia’s help at the time was falsely portrayed as an invasion); and that Neo-Nazi fighters, now incorporated into the Ukrainian state military, played a big role in the coup, in the civil war and in the current fighting in the Russian invasion. There is abundant evidence that the U.S. was behind the violent overthrow of Ukraine’s democratically-elected president in 2014, especially a leaked phone conversation between a high-ranking State Dept. official and the American ambassador in Kiev discussing weeks before the coup who would make up the new government. There is more than abundant evidence about the influence of neo-Nazis in Ukraine.

There was also little emphasis in the media’s information war on diplomatic moves that could have prevented the Russian invasion: namely the seven-year-old Minsk accords that could have ended the civil war if the U.S., Germany and France pressured Kiev to implement it.

Volnovakh
https://twitter.com/i/status/1516110852872679428

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Lucrative.

Ukraine and the Profits of War (TomD)

The war in Ukraine will indeed be a bonanza for the likes of Raytheon and Lockheed Martin. First of all, there will be the contracts to resupply weapons like Raytheon’s Stinger anti-aircraft missile and the Raytheon/Lockheed Martin-produced Javelin anti-tank missile that Washington has already provided to Ukraine by the thousands. The bigger stream of profits, however, will come from assured post-conflict increases in national-security spending here and in Europe justified, at least in part, by the Russian invasion and the disaster that’s followed. Indeed, direct arms transfers to Ukraine already reflect only part of the extra money going to U.S. military contractors. This fiscal year alone, they are guaranteed to also reap significant benefits from the Pentagon’s Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative (USAI) and the State Department’s Foreign Military Financing (FMF) program, both of which finance the acquisition of American weaponry and other equipment, as well as military training.

These have, in fact, been the two primary channels for military aid to Ukraine from the moment the Russians invaded and seized Crimea in 2014. Since then, the United States has committed around $5 billion in security assistance to that country. According to the State Department, the United States has provided such military aid to help Ukraine “preserve its territorial integrity, secure its borders, and improve interoperability with NATO.” So, when Russian troops began to mass on the Ukrainian border last year, Washington quickly upped the ante. On March 31, 2021, the U.S. European Command declared a “potential imminent crisis,” given the estimated 100,000 Russian troops already along that border and within Crimea. As last year ended, the Biden administration had committed $650 million in weaponry to Ukraine, including anti-aircraft and anti-armor equipment like the Raytheon/Lockheed Martin Javelin anti-tank missile.

Despite such elevated levels of American military assistance, Russian troops did indeed invade Ukraine in February. Since then, according to Pentagon reports, the U.S. has committed to giving approximately $2.6 billion in military aid to that country, bringing the Biden administration total to more than $3.2 billion and still rising. Some of this assistance was included in a March emergency-spending package for Ukraine, which required the direct procurement of weapons from the defense industry, including drones, laser-guided rocket systems, machine guns, ammunition, and other supplies. The major military-industrial corporations will now seek Pentagon contracts to deliver that extra weaponry, even as they are gearing up to replenish Pentagon stocks already delivered to the Ukrainians.

On that front, in fact, military contractors have much to look forward to. More than half of the Pentagon’s $6.5 billion portion of the emergency-spending package for Ukraine is designated simply to replenish DoD inventories. In all, lawmakers allocated $3.5 billion to that effort, $1.75 billion more than the president even requested. They also boosted funding by $150 million for the State Department’s FMF program for Ukraine. And keep in mind that those figures don’t even include emergency financing for the Pentagon’s acquisition and maintenance costs, which are guaranteed to provide more revenue streams for the major weapons makers.

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Character assassination. Algorithms. Shadow banning. De-platforming.

American Commissars (Chris Hedges)

The ruling class, made up of the traditional elites that run the Republican Party and the Democratic Party, is employing draconian forms of censorship on its right-wing and left-wing critics in a desperate effort to cling to power. The traditional elites were discredited for pushing through a series of corporate assaults on workers, from deindustrialization to trade deals. They were unable to stem rising inflation, the looming economic crisis and the ecological emergency. They were incapable of carrying out significant social and political reform to ameliorate widespread suffering and refused to accept responsibility for two decades of military fiascos in the Middle East. And now they have launched a new and sophisticated McCarthyism. Character assassination. Algorithms. Shadow banning. De-platforming.

Censorship is the last resort of desperate and unpopular regimes. It magically appears to make a crisis go away. It comforts the powerful with the narrative they want to hear, one fed back to them by courtiers in the media, government agencies, think tanks and academia. The problem of Donald Trump is solved by censoring Donald Trump. The problem of left-wing critics, such as myself, is solved by censoring us. The result is a world of make-believe. YouTube disappeared six years of my RT show, “On Contact,” although not one episode dealt with Russia. It is not a secret as to why my show vanished. It gave a voice to writers and dissidents, including Noam Chomsky and Cornel West, as well as activists from Extinction Rebellion, Black Lives Matter, third parties and the prison abolitionist movement.

It called out the Democratic Party for its subservience to corporate power. It excoriated the crimes of the apartheid state of Israel. It covered Julian Assange in numerous episodes. It gave a voice to military critics, many of them combat veterans, who condemned US war crimes. It no longer matters how prominent you are or how big a following you have. If you challenge power, you are at risk of being censored. Former British MP George Galloway detailed a similar experience during an April 15 panel organized by Consortium News in which I took part: “I have been threatened with travel restrictions were I to continue the television broadcast I had been doing for almost an entire decade. I have been stamped by the false label ‘Russian State Media,’ which I never had, by the way, when I was presenting a show on Russian state media. It was only given after I ceased to have a show on Russian state media, ceased because the government made it a crime for me to do so.”

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As will the most vaxxed states.

Lockdown-Heavy States Had Some of the Worst Health Results (McMaken)

As hard as it is to believe, the Chinese regime is still employing a “zero covid” strategy and claims it can eradicate covid entirely through lockdowns and vaccinations. China’s draconian, nightmarish, near-total lockdown policy—which is notably still “necessary” in spite of widespread vaccination—has recently been revived in Shanghai where residents are now struggling to find food. But the regime has only doubled down on the policy, with Chinese President Xi Jinping declaring that “persistence is victory.” This approach has no basis in any actual science, however, and contradicts decades of epidemiological research condemning lockdowns. Moreover, a 2021 joint study from USC and the Rand Corporation concluded “excess mortality increases” following “the implementation of SIP [shelter-in-place] policies.”

This week, a new study published by the National Bureau of Economic Research found that the states with the harshest lockdowns tended to perform the worst in a composite measure of mortality, economic performance, and education. The states that performed the best were in many cases states where lockdowns were weak or nonexistent, with Utah and Nebraska at the top of the list. The study, authored by Phil Kerpen, Stephen Moore, and Casey B. Mulligan, also concluded that antilockdown Florida, Arkansas, West Virginia, and Utah “were outliers” that performed unexpectedly well compared to their neighbors. Prolockdown California, Illinois, New Mexico, and Colorado, on the other hand, performed more poorly than their neighbors.

The chief value of the report is that it takes economic, educational, and health variables and normalizes them across states. For example, it’s difficult to meaningfully compare economies when some states are far more reliant on service industries than others. In this case, the authors find the “combined economic performance” for states taking the nature of each state’s economy into account. By this metric, the states that performed the best during the pandemic were lockdown-light states Montana, South Dakota, Nebraska, Idaho, and Utah. The states with the worst outcomes were lockdown-heavy Hawaii, New Jersey, Connecticut, New York, and Illinois.

On the matter of education—which the authors note is closely tied to both economic performance and mortality in the longer term—the authors look at bans on in-person education, state by state, and presumed resulting “learning loss.” In this case, the best performers were Wyoming, Arkansas, Florida, South Dakota, and Utah. The worst performers were California, Oregon, Maryland, Washington, and Hawaii. Of course, if faced with statistics such as these, lockdown advocates are likely to admit that lost educational opportunities and lost economic prosperity are unfortunate. But, they will say education and property rights had to limited in the name of preventing mortality and protecting “public health.”

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Where the WHO will be awarded dictatorial powers.

Second Global Covid-19 Summit Scheduled For May 12 (R.)

A second Global Covid-19 Summit will be held virtually next month for countries to discuss efforts to end the pandemic and prepare for future health threats, according to a joint statement on Monday. “The emergence and spread of new variants, like Omicron, have reinforced the need for a strategy aimed at controlling Covid-19 worldwide,” the White House said in a news release with the Group of Seven and Group of 20 nations. The announcement comes amid a surge of Covid-19 cases in parts of the United States and around the world prompted by easily transmissible variants of the virus.


China’s most populous city, Shanghai, is trying to return to normal after a nearly three-week shutdown, which, along with wider China curbs, are taking a toll on the world’s No 2 economy. The summit will build on efforts and commitments made at the first global summit in September, including getting more people vaccinated, sending tests and treatments to highest-risk populations, expanding protections to health care workers and generating financing for pandemic preparedness, the statement said. “We know we must prepare now to build, sustain, and finance the global capacity we need, not only for emerging COVID-19 variants, but also future health crises,” it said.

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“We’re very clear that the Bidens got some $31 million..”

Hunter Biden’s China Business Deals Should Raise ‘Alarm Bells’ (ET)

“We’re very clear that the Bidens got some $31 million, based on the laptop, from a series of deals that happened beginning when Joe Biden was vice president of the United States. And those deals happened courtesy of four Chinese businessmen,” Schweizer said. All four Chinese businessmen were “directly linked” to the highest levels of Chinese intelligence, he added. The fact that these Chinese businessmen would want to talk to the Bidens was interesting, Schweizer said, since the latter did not bring any capital or investors to the table, something financial investment firms would do. Surely, the Chinese businessmen weren’t philanthropies either, he added, the question then became what they wanted in return.

“When you look at the cluster of who provided the funds to the Bidens, and the fact that the Bidens did not really provide anything tangible in return, this has all the markings of elite capture and of a Chinese intelligence operation,” he said. According to his book, one of the Chinese businessmen was a Chinese tycoon named Che Feng, who helped Hunter Biden and his associates secure a deal involving a Chinese investment fund called Bohai Harvest RST (BHR). Schweizer said the deal netted him about $20 million. Rosemont Seneca Partners, a U.S. investment and advisory firm Hunter Biden co-founded, became one of the shareholders of BHR, which was incorporated in Shanghai in 2013. Hunter gained an unpaid board seat on BHR as a result. In October 2019, George Mesires, Hunter Biden’s attorney, issued a statement saying that the younger Biden had decided to resign from his seat on the BHR board of directors.

Hunter Biden held a 10 percent stake in BHR but divested as of November last year, his lawyer told The New York Times. Che was business partners with Ma Jian, who was then-vice minister of China’s MSS and was reportedly headed the ministry’s No. 8 bureau, which targeted foreigners with its counterintelligence apparatus, according to the book. Ma was vice minister of state security from 2006 until January 2015, when he was placed under Party investigation for corruption, amid a sweeping anti-corruption campaign initiated by Chinese leader Xi Jinping in 2012. He was sentenced to life imprisonment in December 2018, after being found guilty of accepting bribes, insider trading, and making “coercive” business deals.

Before his political downfall, Ma was a key member of a political faction loyal to former Chinese regime leader Jiang Zemin. The so-called Jiang faction is known for opposing Xi’s leadership. Che, who is also the son-in-law of Dai Xianlong, the former governor of China’s central bank, was also named in the 2017 Paradise Papers for making about $14.6 million in preferred stocks through his offshore company registered in the British Virgin Islands between 2009 and 2013. According to Chinese media, Che was placed under investigation in June 2015. “[Che] would fade from the [BHR] deal after both he and Ma were arrested and charged with money laundering and bribery, respectively. But the partnership between Hunter and Chinese officials was off and running,” according to his book.

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“It’s a doomsday machine, it’s the atomic bomb, everyone gets wiped out — that’s the key.”

Jack Dorsey Lashes Out At Twitter Board As Elon Musk Tries To Buy Company (DW)

Former Twitter CEO and co-founder Jack Dorsey slammed the company’s board of directors in a tweet over the weekend which comes as entrepreneur Elon Musk, the world’s richest man, offered $43 billion to buy the company outright last week. Dorsey was responding to the following tweet when he made his remark, “If look into the history of Twitter board, it’s intriguing as I was a witness on its early beginnings, mired in plots and coups, and particularly amongst Twitter’s founding members. I wish if it could be made into a Hollywood thriller one day.” Dorsey responded, “It’s consistently been the dysfunction of the company.”

Dorsey also said “big facts” in response to the following statement from venture capitalist Fred Destin: “What I do know for sure is that this old Silicon Valley proverb is grounded in age-old wisdom that still applies today: Good boards don’t create good companies, but a bad board will kill a company every time.” When later asked if he was allowed to speak like this publicly given the fact that he is still on the company’s board, Dorsey responded, “No.” Twitter has attempted to stop Musk from taking over the company by adopting a so-called “poison pill” that effectively allows all shareholders, except those trying to buy out the company, to purchase newly offered shares at a discounted price.

Musk would have to purchase the new shares at a higher price, which could end up being too much for him to afford, if he wanted to take over the company. Despite throwing a massive roadblock in Musk’s way, the adoption of the poison pill would not bar Musk from being able to buy the company, it would only make it harder. “A poison pill is a way to stave off someone until you can get a higher price. It makes it outrageously expensive for the person to buy it,” said Charles Elson, the founding director of the University of Delaware’s Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance. “It’s a doomsday machine, it’s the atomic bomb, everyone gets wiped out — that’s the key.”

Mr. Wonderful

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Still can’t see him lose.

Macron Should Prepare For A Brutal Shock After Latest Polls (Exp.)

In 2017, Macron turned a comfortable second-round victory over Le Pen into an electoral route once he bested her on economic policy during their candidates’ debate. Five years ago, Macron was the pro-change candidate and his televised mastery of policy detail, in concert with his seemingly non-ideological, moderate prescriptions for French economic ills, ended Le Pen’s slim hopes. Ironically, perhaps, it is Macron’s stewardship of the economy that yet could see Le Pen victorious. Macron is seen by many as “the president of the rich,” and most say his economic reforms favour the affluent to the neglect of those on modest incomes. Hence, Le Pen’s healthy leads on issues such as inflation, jobs, and the economy. If most voters prioritise these issues when casting their ballots, Macron will be lucky to eke out a victory.


In a different political climate, Macron could have coasted home upon the support of those who care most about health care, climate change, education, and, of course, Ukraine. Unfortunately for Macron, only health policy matters a great deal to a good number of voters. Instead, a Macron victory will mirror Biden’s 2020 election over Donald Trump in one crucial aspect. It will be more about his opponent’s perceived failings than his own qualities as a candidate and officeholder. Just as most Biden voters cast a negative ballot – their vote was more against Trump than for Biden, himself – our poll finds that more Macron voters will be voting against Le Pen’s “far right” image than for Macron. And, there are certainly enough anti-Le Pen voters across France to hand Macron a second term. He may be the latest beneficiary of the cordon sanitaire, the convention that those on the moderate Left and the moderate Right vote for whichever mainstream candidate prevents the far-right candidate from winning.

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Her last name will seal her loss.

EU Uses 18 Year Old Embezzlement Charges to Derail Le Pen Presidential Bid (SN)

Presumably as part of a deliberate effort to derail her presidential chances, the European Union has exhumed 18-year-old embezzlement charges against Marine Le Pen. “The EU’s anti-fraud body has accused French far-right leader Marine Le Pen and associates of embezzling around 600,000 euros during their time as MEPs,” reports AFP. The National Rally leader is personally accused of embezzling “around 137,000 euros ($150,000) worth of public money from the Strasbourg parliament when she was an MEP between 2004 and 2017.” Le Pen’s lawyer Rodolphe Bosselut dismissed the charges, adding that the “timing” of them was suspicious. Noting that the report relates to “old facts more than ten years old,” Bosselut highlighted how Le Pen “has not been summoned by any French judicial authority” to answer the charges.


“I’m surprised by the timing of such a strong disclosure and the instrumentalisation,” said Bosselut. The EU has chosen to resurrect the old claims just days before the final round of the French presidential election, in which Le Pen will face off against incumbent Emmanuel Macron. Although still a long shot, recent polls had shown Le Pen closing the gap on Macron, causing consternation amongst globalist technocrats. Given the context, the EU dragging up old charges is clearly an act of election interference intended to tarnish Le Pen before this weekend’s vote. As we previously highlighted, after Hungary’s Viktor Orban won re-election in a landslide, the EU responded by slapping sanctions on the country as a form of punishment for the electorate exercising their democratic will.

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“After all, they were ‘just doing their job’ – and they would not want to feel harassed or burdened, would they?”

From Rachel Carson to Monsanto: The Silence of Spring (OffG)

In 2016, Rosemary Mason wrote an open letter to European Chemicals Agency Executive Director Geert Dancet: Open Letter to the ECHA about Scientific Fraud and Ecocide. More of an in-depth report than a letter, it can be accessed on the academia.edu site. In it, she explained how current EU legislation was originally set up to protect the pesticides industry and Monsanto and other agrochemical corporations helped the EU design the regulatory systems for their own products. She also drew Dancet’s attention to the journal Critical Reviews in Toxicology and how, in 2016 Volume 46, Monsanto commissioned five reviews published in a supplement to the journal. Monsanto also funded them. Mason argues the aim was to cast serious doubts about the adverse effects of glyphosate by using junk science. Straight out of the Big Tobacco playbook.


Mason told Dancet: CEO Hugh Grant and the US EPA knew that glyphosate caused all of these problems. The corporation concealed the carcinogenic effects of PCBs on humans and animals for seven years. They have no plans to protect you and your families from the tsunami of sickness that is affecting us all in the UK and the US.” Meanwhile, on the US Right to Know site, the article Roundup Cancer Cases – Key Documents and Analysis sets out just why more than 100,000 cancer sufferers are attempting to hold Monsanto to account in US courts. In a just (and sane) world, CEOs would be held personally responsible for the products they peddle and earn millions from. But no doubt they would do their utmost to dodge culpability. After all, they were ‘just doing their job’ – and they would not want to feel harassed or burdened, would they?

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Australian pelican

 

 

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Apr 132022
 
 April 13, 2022  Posted by at 8:04 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  63 Responses »


Margaret Bourke-White Coney Island 1952

 

CIA Admits Feeding Americans False Info About Ukraine (Ron Paul)
The West Cannot Isolate Russia, Putin Warns (F.)
China’s Jan-March Overall Trade With Russia Rises 28% (R.)
The Defense Industry’s Ukraine Pundits (Lever)
Top American Golfer Recently Underwent Surgery For Blood Clot In Her Left Arm (GW)
Bitcoin Fans Are Psychopaths Who Don’t Care About Anyone, Study Shows (NYP)
California Now Leads The Country In Illiteracy (CJ)
At Least 20 Federal ‘Assets’ Embedded at Capitol on Jan. 6 (ET)
Covering for the Big Guy (Dinesh D’Souza)
Canada’s Next PM (Bexte)
Rebel News Founder Speaks After Trudeau Denies Them Journalism ‘License’ (Fox)
Trudeau Considers Trucker Tax (TCS)
Twitter ‘A Sh*t Show’ For Employees Since Elon Musk Took Major Stake (NYP)
Elon Musk Accused Of Breaking Law While Buying Twitter Stock (AP)
Elon Musk’s Vision For The Internet Is Dangerous Nonsense (Robert Reich)

 

 

 

 

“Americans are directly in charge of the war on the ground.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

” Isn’t it ironic that the CIA itself has done more than the Russians to undermine Americans’ faith in the media..”

CIA Admits Feeding Americans False Info About Ukraine (Ron Paul)

Late last year, a Gallup poll showed that Americans’ trust in the mainstream media has fallen to its second lowest level on record. Only seven percent of Americans responded that they have a “great deal” of trust in the media. That loss of trust has been well-earned by the mainstream media, and it explains the massive growth of independent media and alternative voices on social media. The response to the rise of independent media voices has been a rush to “cancel” any voice outside the accepted mainstream narrative. Citizens of the Soviet Union would read manipulated media like Pravda not because the regime reported facts, but because truth was hidden between the lines of what was reported and what was not reported. That seems to be where we are in the US today.

Last week an extraordinary article appeared in, of all places, NBC News, reporting that the US intelligence community is knowingly feeding information it does not believe accurate to the US mainstream media for the American audience to consume. In other words, the article reports that the US “deep state” admits to being actively engaged in lying to the American people in the hopes that it can manipulate public opinion According to the NBC News article, “multiple US officials acknowledged that the US has used information as a weapon even when confidence in the accuracy of the information wasn’t high. Sometimes it has used low-confidence intelligence for deterrent effect…” Readers will recall the shocking headlines that Russia was prepared to use chemical weapons in Ukraine, that China would be providing military equipment to Russia, that Russian President Putin was being fed misinformation by his advisors, and more.

All of these were churned out by the CIA to be repeated in the American media even though they were known to be false. It was all about, as one intelligence officer said in the article, “trying to get inside Putin’s head.” That may have been the goal, but what the CIA actually did was get inside America’s head with false information meant to shape public perception of the conflict. They lied to propagandize us in favor of the Biden Administration’s narrative. Those pushing the “Russiagate” hoax through the Trump years claimed that the goal of “Russian disinformation” was to undermine Americans’ trust in our government, media, and other institutions. Isn’t it ironic that the CIA itself has done more than the Russians to undermine Americans’ faith in the media by feeding false stories to establish a particular narrative among the American people?

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“It is practically “impossible to severely isolate anyone in the modern world,” let alone a country as “vast” as Russia..”

“..reiterating unproven claims the West has fostered a neo-Nazi, anti-Russian state on its doorstep..”

The West Cannot Isolate Russia, Putin Warns (F.)

Russian President Vladimir Putin toured a spaceport in the far east of Russia on Tuesday with Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko, defending Russia’s “clear and noble” goals in Ukraine and pointing to the country’s prior achievements in space as proof Western efforts to isolate Moscow will fail. It is practically “impossible to severely isolate anyone in the modern world,” let alone a country as “vast” as Russia, Putin said, according to Reuters, citing Russian state television. Even the “total” sanctions and “complete” isolation of the Soviet Union did not stop it from beating the West into space, Putin said, adding that Russia does not “intend to be isolated.”

Putin said Russia would never again depend on the West and doubled down on the main goal of what the Kremlin calls a “special military operation” in Ukraine, which is to “help people in the Donbas,” the primarily Russian-speaking region in eastern Ukraine, and ensure Russia’s security, according to the New York Times. He said Russia made the “right decision” and “didn’t have a choice” but to invade Ukraine, reiterating unproven claims the West has fostered a neo-Nazi, anti-Russian state on its doorstep. Putin was touring the Vostochny spaceport with Belarusian ally Lukashenko, who reportedly asked why everyone is “getting so worried about these sanctions.” The pair celebrated Cosmonaut’s Day—a celebration of Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin carrying out the first human spaceflight in 1961—and announced a joint project to guarantee both countries independent access to space.

Since Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine six weeks ago, Western countries have imposed a series of increasingly harsh sanctions and restrictions against Russian businesses, industry, and key members of Putin’s inner circle. Many businesses have elected to withdraw from Russia as well. The sanctions have had a dramatic impact on the Russian economy and the World Bank estimates its economy will be around 11% smaller at the end of 2022 (it estimates Ukraine’s will fall around 45%). Despite the Russian downturn, critics, including Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, argue that sanctions are too weak and Europe’s continued purchasing of Russian oil and gas amounts to giving Russia “permission to attack.” Increasing indications of Russian war crimes in Ukraine, such as signs of executed civilians in Bucha, have added to pressure to up sanctions.

Pence Putin
https://twitter.com/i/status/1514060795079966728

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What isolation looks like.

China’s Jan-March Overall Trade With Russia Rises 28% (R.)

China’s overall trade with Russia rose to 243.03 billion yuan ($38.18 billion) in January-March, a Chinese customs spokesman said on Wednesday, up 27.8 percent from a year earlier. China’s total trade with Ukraine climbed to 29.6 billion yuan in the first quarter, customs spokesman Li Kuiwen said at a press conference, up 10.6 percent. China’s trade with both Russia and Ukraine has maintained an uptrend, Li said, adding that China’s economic and trade cooperation with other countries including Russia and Ukraine will remain normal. China’s overall trade with Russia reached 190.12 billion yuan in January-March 2021, while its trade with Ukraine stood at 26.77 billion yuan, according to previous customs data.

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Maybe step 1 is to stop calling it the *Defense* industry?

The Defense Industry’s Ukraine Pundits (Lever)

Last week, CNN brought on former U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta for his fourth recent appearance to talk, once again, about Russian President Vladimir Putin’s deadly invasion of Ukraine. “I think we need to understand that there is only one thing that Putin understands, and that’s force,” said Panetta on Newsroom. The former CIA director added: “I think the United States has to provide whatever weapons are necessary to the Ukrainians, so that they can hit back, and hit back now.” At no time did Panetta nor CNN mention that he’s a senior counselor at Beacon Global Strategies, a defense industry consulting firm that has reportedly represented weapons manufacturer Raytheon. The firm doesn’t disclose its clients, but Raytheon and the defense industry generally stand to benefit from the conflict in Ukraine.

The episode is part of a broader pattern and practice: Since Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine, cable news networks have routinely called on defense officials-turned-consultants to offer analysis and help the American public make sense of the crisis. Often, these analysts have used their TV time to call for greater U.S. involvement and bolder moves that could ratchet up tensions between two nuclear-armed superpowers. The networks have consistently failed to disclose these analysts’ day jobs, describing them instead by only their former high-ranking military or government roles — leaving viewers in the dark about the analysts’ financial ties to defense contractors that stand to profit from increased or prolonged conflict.

During its Ukraine coverage, MSNBC even failed to include disclosures when the network invited on former Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, who serves on the board of directors at Lockheed Martin, the world’s biggest defense contractor. When asked about this matter, Johnson told The Lever, “I have no comment.” Corporate media’s lack of transparency about these consultants is deeply troubling, said Craig Holman, government affairs lobbyist for Public Citizen. “This type of revolving-door behavior should be prohibited for military officials to serve in a private capacity representing military contractors,” Holman told The Lever. “If not prohibited, it should be disclosed to everyone so when they’re going on television trying to affect Biden’s policy on whatever war they have in mind, they ought to be straightforward.”

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Probably nothing. Golfers get blood clots all the time.

Top American Golfer Recently Underwent Surgery For Blood Clot In Her Left Arm (GW)

Nelly Korda announced Friday on social media that she recently underwent surgery for a blood clot in a subclavian vein in her left arm. “I am pleased to report the procedure went well and the doctors were happy with the outcome,” Korda wrote. “I am now home recovering and preparing to start rehab. I am looking forward to getting back to 100 percent so I can begin practicing.” Korda, the No. 2-ranked player in the world, first posted about the blood clot on March 13 and withdrew from the next two events in California, including the Chevron Championship, the season’s first major. “I want to thank everyone for the overwhelming support and messages I have received the last few weeks,” Korda posted. “Your kind words have helped me get through this challenging and scary time.”

Korda last teed it up on the LPGA in early February at the LPGA Drive On Championship. She has finished T-15, T-20, and T-4 in three starts this season. In 2021, Korda won four times on the LPGA as well as Olympic gold in Tokyo and was named Female Player of the Year by the Golf Writers Association of America. She was honored by the GWAA on Wednesday night at the organization’s annual dinner near Augusta. Korda also revealed that she had tested positive for COVID-19 in the second week of January, which “kept her off her feet for some time” before the LPGA season started.

McCullough: permanent DNA alteration
https://twitter.com/i/status/1512916014882828292

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“A team of experts..”

Bitcoin Fans Are Psychopaths Who Don’t Care About Anyone, Study Shows (NYP)

The average Bitcoin investor is a calculating psychopath with an inflated ego, according to scientists. A team of experts recently surveyed more than 500 people to uncover the personality traits that are most common among crypto nuts. They identified that many investors exhibit signs of the “dark tetrad”, a group of four unsavory traits made up of narcissism, Machiavellianism, psychopathy and sadism. In plain English, that means dark tetrads have an inflated sense of self-importance and derive pleasure from the pain of others. They also find it difficult to empathize with others and are sly and manipulative.


Scientists at Queensland University of Technology described their findings in research published in the journal Personality and Individual Differences earlier this month. They asked 566 people to complete personality surveys as well as answers questions about their attitudes to crypto. Of the participants, one in four reported that they owned crypto and two-thirds showed an interest in crypto investing. All four dark tetrad traits correlated with an affinity for investing, each for their own reasons. According to the researchers, dark tetrads are partly drawn to crypto because they are prepared to take risks. Digital assets such as Bitcoin are infamously volatile and the feast-or-famine nature of investing is particularly enticing to some.

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3rd world.

California Now Leads The Country In Illiteracy (CJ)

With California’s porous southern border, soaring taxes, and ongoing flow of overbearing and occasionally bizarre regulations (one law targets cow flatulence, for example), state residents could use a break from bad news. Unfortunately, that doesn’t appear to be happening anytime soon. According to a recent report, California now leads the country in illiteracy. In fact, 23.1 percent of Californians over age 15 cannot read this sentence. While the problem has many causes, much of the blame falls on the state’s failing public schools. The 2019 National Assessment of Educational Progress found that just 30 percent of California eighth-graders are proficient in reading. And those numbers reflect results gathered before the Covid-19 lockdowns.

Voters’ attitudes toward California’s government-run schools have tumbled accordingly. A new poll from UC–Berkeley’s Institute of Governmental Studies reveals that just 35 percent of the state’s voters gave public schools in their local district a grade of A or B, down from 55 percent in 2011. At the other end of the spectrum, 25 percent now give their local public schools a D or an F, up 15 percentage points from 2011. The poll included responses from 800 California voters, with 50 percent identifying as Democrats, 26 percent as Republicans, and 24 percent as independents. It’s hardly a surprise, then, that public school enrollment is sinking. In 2018–2019, the system lost about 23,000 students, but between the 2019–2020 and 2020–2021 terms, California public schools saw more than 160,000 students leave—a sevenfold increase.

In Los Angeles, defections are accelerating. Whereas L.A. Unified schools were home to 737,000 students 20 years ago, the district is now forecasting a 25,000-student drop by the fall, which would bring their attendance number below the 400,000 mark. As the Los Angeles Times reports, the district’s “American Rescue Plan” funding will soon run out: “From July forward, the district is projected to spend about $1 billion more than it will take in over a two-year period. The district also must wrestle with underfunded retiree health benefits.” Additionally, the district’s contract with United Teachers Los Angeles runs out at the end of the school year, and the union will demand the sun and the moon for the next contract.

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“One agent was even recorded stating, ‘We don’t know what we are looking for yet.’ They should look for a copy of the Constitution and read it.”

At Least 20 Federal ‘Assets’ Embedded at Capitol on Jan. 6 (ET)

At least 20 FBI and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives “assets” were embedded around the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, a defense attorney wrote in a court filing on April 12. The disclosure was made in a motion seeking to dismiss seditious conspiracy and obstruction charges against 10 Oath Keepers defendants in one of the most prominent Jan. 6 criminal cases. David W. Fischer, attorney for Thomas E. Caldwell of Berryville, Virginia, filed a 41-page motion to dismiss four counts on behalf of all Oath Keepers case defendants before U.S. District Judge Amit P. Mehta in Washington, D.C. Caldwell is charged in the indictment, but is not a member of the Oath Keepers, he told The Epoch Times in March.

“At least 20 FBI and ATF assets were embedded around the Capitol on J6,” read a footnote on Page 6 of the motion. No other details were provided in the document. The footnote said defense attorneys “combed through a mountain of discovery,” including FBI form 302 summaries of interviews conducted by FBI agents. In addition to the information about law-enforcement assets on the ground at the Capitol, the footnote says, the Oath Keepers “were being monitored and recorded prior to J6.” Poring over evidence turned over in discovery by prosecutors in two major Oath Keepers cases has “not found one iota of proof” that defendants “had any plan, intention, design, or scheme to specifically enter the Capitol Building on J6,” the motion said.

Since the first arrests of Jan. 6 defendants in early 2021, there has been extensive speculation and questions from attorneys, defendants, case observers, and members of Congress about the role law enforcement played that day. During a Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing on Jan. 11, U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) grilled top FBI officials on the subject. “How many FBI agents or confidential informants actively participated in the events of Jan. 6?” Cruz asked Jill Sanborn, executive assistant director of the FBI’s national security branch. “Sir, I’m sure you can appreciate that I can’t go into the specifics of sources and methods,” Sanborn said. Cruz replied, “Did any FBI agents or confidential informants actively participate in the events of Jan. 6, yes or no?” “Sir, I can’t answer that,” Sanborn said. “Did any FBI agents or confidential informants commit crimes of violence on Jan. 6?” Cruz asked. “I can’t answer that, sir,” Sanborn replied.

Jeremy M. Brown, an Oath Keepers member from Florida who was charged with two Jan. 6-related counts but is not part of either major Oath Keepers conspiracy case, told The Epoch Times earlier this year that the FBI unsuccessfully tried to recruit him in 2020 to spy on the group. Brown said the same agents who later arrested him for alleged Jan. 6 crimes tried to recruit him on Dec. 11, 2020, to become a confidential informant. He refused. He was arrested on Sept. 30, 2021, when dozens of federal agents swarmed his Florida property. “When asked by me and my girlfriend to produce the warrants at the time of arrest, they refused to produce them,” Brown said. “One agent was even recorded stating, ‘We don’t know what we are looking for yet.’ They should look for a copy of the Constitution and read it.”

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“This is a Joe Biden scandal, not a Hunter Biden scandal.”

Covering for the Big Guy (Dinesh D’Souza)

This has all the persuasive power of saying that Don Corleone knew nothing about his family’s activities and played no part in them whatever. It makes no sense. And Joe Biden’s direct involvement in his son’s activities has now been confirmed with a new email that has emerged. The email involves a college recommendation that Joe Biden wrote for a Chinese businessman who was partners with Hunter Biden. Jonathan Li is the CEO of a company BHR that entered into a joint venture with Hunter Biden’s company Rosemont Seneca. Hunter also held a 10 percent stake in BHR. In 2017, Li sent an email to Hunter Biden and his business associates Devon Archer and Jim Bulger.

“Gentlemen,” he wrote, “Please find the attached resume of my son, Chris Li. He is applying [to] the following colleges for this year.” Li listed Brown University, Cornell University, and New York University. He also attached an “updated version” of his son’s resume. So then what happened? Let’s follow the email trail. “Let’s see how we can be helpful here to Chris,” Bulger responded to Hunter and the gang. A few weeks later, on Feb. 18, 2017, Eric Schwerin, president of Rosemont Seneca, replied to Li. “Jonathan,” he wrote, “Hunter asked me to send you a copy of the recommendation letter that he asked his father to write on behalf of Christopher for Brown University.” In other words, Joe Biden wrote the letter.

Is it reasonable, at this point, to continue to say Joe Biden told the truth when he said he had nothing to do with his son’s business? Is it believable that he was never in on the deals, or stood to benefit from them? No, it’s not. On the contrary, it seems that Hunter Biden was Joe Biden’s frontman. This is a Joe Biden scandal, not a Hunter Biden scandal. If the circuitous family racket can be likened to the coils of a snake, Joe Biden is the head of the snake.

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I understand he’s a good speaker.

Canada’s Next PM (Bexte)

Conservative leadership candidate Pierre Poilievre has drawn a massive crowd to his campaign rally in Calgary, Alberta. According to organizers, over 7,000 RSVP’d to the event, and more are coming. The hype is real, and traffic jams have built up along the road to the rally. “People haven’t felt so free in this country, have they,” Poilievre began. “Whether it’s the fourteen-year-old girl suffering depression after separation from her sport[s] and social activities for two long years; whether it’s the waitress who mortgaged her house to start a business only to have it locked down again and again until she couldn’t open it up anymore; whether it is the hard-working trucker who delivered the goods and services that we need —” The rally erupted at the mention of truckers, all but drowning out Poilievre as he continued praising their gusto and disparaging Trudeau for his tyrannical response.


Indeed, it appears that after years of ‘Red Erin’ O’Toole, Calgarians and Canadians more generally are ready for a Conservative leader who will end Trudeau’s carbon tax, denounce the WEF, and defund the CBC. Speaking of Justin Trudeau, just yesterday, he managed to draw a crowd, too… A crowd of protesters honking and telling him he’s a disgrace to Canada. This most recent barrage of boos and honks occurred while entering Victoria City Hall to speak with Mayor Lisa Helps. This visit would have been innocuous for most leaders, but merely his presence draws a crowd of disdain. It’s gotten so bad that he’s taken to hiding his itinerary to avoid protests. The contrast couldn’t be starker. Poilievre is being celebrated across the country, while Trudeau slithers in through back doors even while abroad. Assuming he keeps up the momentum, Poilievre might just be the first opponent capable of dethroning Trudeau since he was elected PM.

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“A panel of five people in secret: We don’t even know what they said or did or what they looked at. And they claim that only one percent of our stories are news..”

Rebel News Founder Speaks After Trudeau Denies Them Journalism ‘License’ (Fox)

Rebel News founder Ezra Levant sounded off Tuesday after the Trudeau administration denied his outlet what he described as a newly-conceived “license” to fully practice journalism. Levant told “Tucker Carlson Tonight” that, if the Liberal Party leader’s behavior during the Ottawa trucker protests is any indicator, he is working hard to punish critics and upturn their lives. He noted how Prime Minister Justin Trudeau previously slammed his agency when a reporter from it asked a question during a press availability while the politician was running for reelection in 2021. At the time, Trudeau claimed Rebel News was engaging in “disinformation on the science around vaccines” and made a point to declare he could not bring himself to describe them as a “media organization.”


“It’s not yet illegal to do journalism without that license, it’s a government license called the Qualified Canadian Journalism Organization License. A government panel reviews you. They spent one year reviewing Rebel News, looking through more than 100 of our stories,” Levant told host Tucker Carlson. “A panel of five people in secret: We don’t even know what they said or did or what they looked at. And they claim that only one percent of our stories are news, so we don’t get the license.” Levant went on to describe what that means for his organization, versus mainstream outlets like CBC. Trudeau plans to “compel” Big Tech to down-rank non-licensed journalists and change the Income Tax Act to punish them, Levant said. “We’re not banned yet, although we are banned from government events, as you said earlier. But I’m worried that he’s done all this in two years. The worst is yet to come. He may well ban us yet,” he concluded.

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What a surprise….

Trudeau Considers Trucker Tax (TCS)

After re-raising the carbon tax on April 1, Trudeau is considering yet another carbon-based tax that specifically targets your everyday trucker. If passed, owners of Ford F-150s will pay a $1,000 tax, while those who own a Ram 3500 heavy-duty pickup trucks will have to dish out $4,000. The tax comes as part of Canada’s 2030 Emissions Reduction Plan, in which the government claims it’s “making it easier for Canadians to switch to electric vehicles.” Part of this plan includes taxing truck owners so much that they can’t afford to own one anymore. Page 192 of the report states that the government will:

“Broaden Canada’s existing Green Levy (Excise Tax) for Fuel Inefficient Vehicles to include additional ICE vehicle types, such as pickup trucks. A sliding scale for the implementation of this Green Levy should be developed based on the emissions produced from different vehicles. Revenue from a broadened Green Levy could increase available funding for ZEV incentives for individuals and organizations without limiting the fleet size and while encouraging smaller vehicles of all fuel types. Carefully consider the impacts on and supports for low-income households and other vulnerable populations when exploring changes to the Green Levy and ZEV incentives.”

That’s right. It appears Trudeau is freezing out truck owners again. First, their bank accounts, now their savings. This shouldn’t surprise people at this point. After all, Trudeau isn’t shy when it comes to coercing Canadians. He imposed draconian federal mandates that are still in place despite what the data says and has kept the travel ban on the unvaccinated even as the rest of the world opens up. Now, he’s targeting truckers by legally requiring them to comply with his environmental activism. And he’s comfortable doing this despite a bleeding economy, unreasonable carbon taxes, and record-high inflation.

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Twitter’s been ‘A Sh*t Show’ for much longer..

Wokist traumas: “..a scheduled “day of rest” for company employees..”.

Twitter ‘A Sh*t Show’ For Employees Since Elon Musk Took Major Stake (NYP)

Elon Musk’s looming battle with Twitter’s board is a source of major anxiety for company employees – many of whom are reportedly worried that billionaire’s campaign to force changes is just beginning. Musk’s surprise rejection of a Twitter board seat emerged ahead of a scheduled “day of rest” for company employees, according to a report. Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal broke the news on his account the previous night, describing Musk’s decision as “for the best” even as he warned workers they would face “distractions ahead,” Bloomberg reported late Monday. The uncertainty left Twitter workers feeling “super stressed” about the future, with employees reportedly “working together to help each other get through the week.”

The report cited interviews with Twitter employees who asked not to be identified while discussing the company’s inner workings. Several employees told the outlet that Twitter’s internal environment was a “s–t-show” after Musk’s deal with the board fell through. One Twitter employee griped that Musk was likely ‘just getting started” with pushing for change at the company – a development the worker described as “unfortunate,” according to Bloomberg. Musk has emerged as a vocal critic of Twitter’s business practices, taking particular umbrage with the platform’s content moderation policies. He’s also the company’s largest individual shareholder after acquiring a 9% stake earlier this month.

Under the terms of his initial agreement with Twitter, Musk would have received a board seat through at least 2024 and would be barred from acquiring more than 14.9% of the company. Without that deal in place, Musk is free to acquire a larger stake in the company and push for greater influence over its operations. Musk updated an SEC filing on his Twitter holdings with language that suggests he plans to stay active in the company’s dealings, despite his expanding business empire that includes Tesla and SpaceX.

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Can a investor be compelled to lose money? Musk disclosed his stake when he was done buying. If he had disclosed it before, it would have cost him 100s of millions.

“The lawsuit alleges that by March 14, Musk’s stake in Twitter had reached a 5% threshold that required him to publicly disclose his holdings under U.S. securities law by March 24. Musk didn’t make the required disclosure until April 4.”

“..depriving investors who sold shares before Musk’s improperly delayed disclosure [of] the chance to realize significant gains..”

The gains they could only have realized because Musk was buying…

Elon Musk Accused Of Breaking Law While Buying Twitter Stock (AP)

Elon Musk’s huge Twitter investment took a new twist Tuesday with the filing of a lawsuit alleging that the colorful billionaire illegally delayed disclosing his stake in the social media company so he could buy more shares at lower prices. The complaint in New York federal court accuses Musk of violating a regulatory deadline to reveal he had accumulated a stake of at least 5%. Instead, according to the complaint, Musk didn’t disclose his position in Twitter until he’d almost doubled his stake to more than 9%. That strategy, the lawsuit alleges, hurt less wealthy investors who sold shares in the San Francisco company in the nearly two weeks before Musk acknowledged holding a major stake.

Musk’s regulatory filings show that he bought a little more than 620,000 shares at $36.83 apiece on Jan. 31 and then continued to accumulate more shares on nearly every single trading day through April 1. Musk, best known as CEO of the electric car maker Tesla, held 73.1 million Twitter shares as of the most recent count Monday. That represents a 9.1% stake in Twitter. The lawsuit alleges that by March 14, Musk’s stake in Twitter had reached a 5% threshold that required him to publicly disclose his holdings under U.S. securities law by March 24. Musk didn t make the required disclosure until April 4.

That revelation caused Twitter’s stock to soar 27% from its April 1 close to nearly $50 by the end of April 4’s trading, depriving investors who sold shares before Musk’s improperly delayed disclosure the chance to realize significant gains, according to the lawsuit filed on behalf of an investor named Marc Bain Rasella. Musk, meanwhile, was able to continue to buy shares that traded in prices ranging from $37.69 to $40.96. The lawsuit is seeking to be certified as a class action representing Twitter shareholders who sold shares between March 24 and April 4, a process that could take a year or more.

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Washed up Robert Reich has it figured out: Elon Musk is Putin. And Trump. “.. the dream of every dictator, strongman, demagogue and modern-day robber baron on Earth..”

Some people really don’t like free speech…

Elon Musk’s Vision For The Internet Is Dangerous Nonsense (Robert Reich)

The Securities and Exchange Commission went after Musk after he tweeted that he had funding to take Tesla private, a clear violation of the law. Musk paid a fine and agreed to let lawyers vet future sensitive tweets, but he has tried to reverse this requirement. He has also been openly contemptuous of the SEC, tweeting at one point that the “E” stands for “Elon’s”. (You can guess what the “S” and “C” stand for.) By the way, how does the SEC go after Musk’s ability to tweet now that he owns Twitter? Billionaires like Musk have shown time and again they consider themselves above the law. And to a large extent, they are.

Musk has enough wealth that legal penalties are no more than slaps on his wrist, and enough power to control one of the most important ways the public now receives news. Think about it: after years of posting tweets that skirt the law, Musk was given a seat on Twitter’s board (and is probably now negotiating for even more clout). Musk says he wants to “free” the internet. But what he really aims to do is make it even less accountable than it is now, when it’s often impossible to discover who is making the decisions about how algorithms are designed, who is filling social media with lies, who’s poisoning our minds with pseudo-science and propaganda, and who’s deciding which versions of events go viral and which stay under wraps.

Make no mistake: this is not about freedom. It’s about power. In Musk’s vision of Twitter and the internet, he’d be the wizard behind the curtain – projecting on the world’s screen a fake image of a brave new world empowering everyone. In reality, that world would be dominated by the richest and most powerful people in the world, who wouldn’t be accountable to anyone for facts, truth, science or the common good. That’s Musk’s dream. And Trump’s. And Putin’s. And the dream of every dictator, strongman, demagogue and modern-day robber baron on Earth. For the rest of us, it would be a brave new nightmare.

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George Webb Rotterdam

 

 

 

 

Athens strike

 

 

 

 

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