Aug 302021
 


John French Sloan Sunset, West Twenty-Third Street 1905-6

 

Informed Consent Disclosure To Vaccine Trial Subjects (NIH)
COVID-19 Mandates Will Not Work for the Delta Variant (AIER)
The WHO Oversold the Vaccine and Deprecated Natural Immunity (Tucker)
Americans Traded Their Freedoms for Safety, And Now We Have Neither (TFTP)
UK Gov’t Release 30th Report On Adverse Reactions To Covid-19 Vaccines (Tap)
Interleukin-6 and the Covid-19 Cytokine Storm Syndrome (ERJ)
Burial Costs Covered For Canadians Killed By Approved Vaccines TSun)
Insanity in Vietnam (Berenson)
The Delta Scam (Jim Quinn)
Fears Over Metal Flakes In Moderna Vaccine After Two Deaths (Times)
New Covid Variant Detected In South Africa, Most Mutated Variant So Far (JPost)
Australian Truckers Protest Mandatory Vaccines And Lockdowns (ET)
Hurricane Ida Reversed the Course of the Mississippi River (Gizmodo)

 

 

Ivermectin used as a parasitic. Nice coincidence.

 

 

 

 

 

From Dec 2020.

How many people have been warned of the ADE risk since? This is mandatory. For everyone with a syringe in their hands.

Note: they are all “Vaccine Trial Subjects”.

Informed Consent Disclosure To Vaccine Trial Subjects (NIH)

Aims of the study: Patient comprehension is a critical part of meeting medical ethics standards of informed consent in study designs. The aim of the study was to determine if sufficient literature exists to require clinicians to disclose the specific risk that COVID-19 vaccines could worsen disease upon exposure to challenge or circulating virus.

Methods used to conduct the study: Published literature was reviewed to identify preclinical and clinical evidence that COVID-19 vaccines could worsen disease upon exposure to challenge or circulating virus. Clinical trial protocols for COVID-19 vaccines were reviewed to determine if risks were properly disclosed.

Results of the study: COVID-19 vaccines designed to elicit neutralising antibodies may sensitise vaccine recipients to more severe disease than if they were not vaccinated.


Vaccines for SARS, MERS and RSV have never been approved, and the data generated in the development and testing of these vaccines suggest a serious mechanistic concern : that vaccines designed empirically using the traditional approach (consisting of the unmodified or minimally modified coronavirus viral spike to elicit neutralising antibodies), be they composed of protein, viral vector, DNA or RNA and irrespective of delivery method, may worsen COVID-19 disease via antibody-dependent enhancement (ADE). This risk is sufficiently obscured in clinical trial protocols and consent forms for ongoing COVID-19 vaccine trials that adequate patient comprehension of this risk is unlikely to occur, obviating truly informed consent by subjects in these trials.

Conclusions drawn from the study and clinical implications: The specific and significant COVID-19 risk of ADE should have been and should be prominently and independently disclosed to research subjects currently in vaccine trials, as well as those being recruited for the trials and future patients after vaccine approval, in order to meet the medical ethics standard of patient comprehension for informed consent.

Read more …

Mandatory vaccines, vaccine passports, lockdowns, facemasks, the protests if they try will be ferocious.

COVID-19 Mandates Will Not Work for the Delta Variant (AIER)

Our core position since the start of the Covid-19 response in February 2020 (and which remains fixed for how the US, Canada, UK, Australia, Caribbean nations, European nations, and all other global nations must presently respond to the Delta variant/mutation) is that we do not lock the society down or close schools or impose mask mandates, etc. These policies did not apply to this emergency and certainly not after the first 3 to 4 weeks or so. This applies just as much for the initial Wuhan variant and now for the Covid-19 Delta variant or any other variant to come, if the variant is not one with an extremely high level of lethality, as was presumed erroneously for the initial Wuhan variant. In fact, even with respect to the initial variant it became clear very early on in the pandemic that it was probably no more lethal than annual influenza, yet we persisted with draconian devastating lockdown policies that only served to harm the people.

These restrictive policies worked to ruin and kill (direct and indirect) more persons than SARS-CoV-2 itself. It is why leading infectious diseases experts especially with regards to pandemics (such as Dr. Donald Henderson of Johns Hopkins) never supported the non-pharmacological measures noted above, as they knew that such policies would be catastrophic; even for more lethal pathogens. “As experience shows, there is no basis for recommending quarantine either of groups or individuals. The problems in implementing such measures are formidable, and secondary effects of absenteeism and community disruption as well as possible adverse consequences, such as loss of public trust in government and stigmatization of quarantined people and groups, are likely to be considerable.”

None of these restrictive policy measures such as lockdowns and school closures have worked in the past for Covid-19 and they will not work now with this media-driven hysteria over the Delta variant. If reimposed, they will once again cause crushing harms and deaths due to the collateral effects. The leaders in public health and government spokespersons as well as the corrupted media are quickly progressing towards endorsing and implementing and registering of individuals under the guise of a public health emergency. That our Governments are even considering the issuance of what have become known as Covid-19 ‘vaccine passports’ is very troubling on many levels. The very idea is anathema to our democratic principles and rights that are enshrined in the US Constitution.

Athens Demo

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“People given both doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine were almost six-fold more likely to contract a delta infection and seven-fold more likely to have symptomatic disease than those who recovered.”

The WHO Oversold the Vaccine and Deprecated Natural Immunity (Tucker)

Experience with Covid-19 is a textbook case of how the immune system scales naturally to take on the newest pathogens that have always and will always vex the world. The vaccine (especially one using a new innovation rather than a traditional inoculation) for this type of virus – respiratory, widespread, and mild for most – will necessarily be more hit-and-miss, simply because of the pace of mutation and the emergence of variants. The Isreali study is notable only because of the scope of the study and the precision of the results. Reuters summarizes the study in English: “The results are good news for patients who already successfully battled Covid-19, but show the challenge of relying exclusively on immunizations to move past the pandemic. People given both doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine were almost six-fold more likely to contract a delta infection and seven-fold more likely to have symptomatic disease than those who recovered”.


Now to the problem: the overselling of the vaccine and the deprecation of natural immunity. Who was responsible? Indeed, WHO was responsible. Let’s have a look at their FAQ concerning herd immunity. The site was actually changed dramatically over the last twelve months, at one point even removing entirely the possibility that natural infection makes any contribution at all to creating herd immunity. The head of the WHO routinely pushed the idea that the new vaccines have created a great new way to be immune without ever being exposed to the virus. Herd immunity is a fascinating observation that you can trace to biological reality or statistical probability theory, whichever you prefer. It is certainly not a “strategy” so ignore any media source that describes it that way. When a virus kills its host – that is, when a virus overtaxes the body’s ability to integrate it, its host dies and so the virus does not spread to others.

The more this occurs, the less it spreads. If the virus doesn’t kill its host, it can hop to others through all the usual means. When you get such a virus and fight it off, your immune system encodes that information in a way that builds immunity to it. When it happens to enough people (and each case is different so we can’t put a clear number on it, especially given so many cross immunities) the virus loses its pandemic quality and becomes endemic, which is to say predictable and manageable. Each new generation incorporates that information through more exposure. This is what one would call virology/immunology 101. It’s what you read in every textbook. It’s been taught in 9th-grade cell biology for probably 80 years. Observing the operations of this evolutionary phenomenon is pretty wonderful because it increases one’s respect for the way in which human biology has adapted to the presence of pathogens without absolutely freaking out.


And the discovery of this fascinating dynamic in cell biology is a major reason why public health became so smart in the 20th century. We kept calm. We managed viruses with medical professionals: doctor/patient relationships. We avoided the Medieval tendency to run around with hair on fire but rather used rationality and intelligence. One day, this strange institution called the World Health Organization – once glorious because it was mainly responsible for the eradication of smallpox – suddenly decided to delete everything I just wrote from cell biology basics. It has literally changed the science in a Soviet-like way. It has removed with the delete key any mention of natural immunities from its website. It has taken the additional step of actually mischaracterizing the structure and functioning of vaccines.

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“You can’t tyranny your way out of a pandemic — but you can pandemic your way into tyranny.”

“Since George W. Bush declared a national emergency on September 14, 2001, every president after him has extended it.”

Americans Traded Their Freedoms for Safety, And Now We Have Neither (TFTP)

To be clear, no one here is claiming that COVID-19 is not serious and you shouldn’t take precautions. However, granting government tyrannical powers in the form of business closures, mandates, vaccine passports, and more lockdowns, is most assuredly not the answer. As John Locke famously stated in A Letter Concerning Toleration, “It is one thing to persuade, another to command; one thing to press with arguments, another with penalties. This the civil power alone has a right to do; to the other good-will is authority enough.” In summary, good ideas do not require force. What’s more, as the data analyses above illustrate, it is difficult to tell the difference between places which had strict lockdowns and mandates verses the ones that did not. You can’t tyranny your way out of a pandemic — but you can pandemic your way into tyranny.

Sadly, Americans have a short memory when it comes to giving up their freedoms for a false sense of security. When a society surrenders individual liberty to the state, the state never gives it back. Case in point: 9/11. After the tragic attacks on September 11, 2001, the U.S. government declared a state of emergency. That order granted the Office of the President broad discretionary powers over the military, powers that the President normally does not have. It also gives the Executive far more power than it should have which allowed for the creation of the massive surveillance state we see today. Since that September day, we’ve entered into multiple wars of aggression while bypassing Congress, waged a massive domestic spying campaign, eroded the Bill of Rights, and constructed a monumental police state hear at home.

Under the National Emergencies Act, national emergencies expire after a year, unless the president renews them by notifying Congress. Since George W. Bush declared a national emergency on September 14, 2001, every president after him has extended it. Because Americans have such short memories, we are once again yielding our freedom for the perception of safety. And, just like the government has done since 9/11, they will hold on to those freedoms and refuse to give them back. Now, as the bogus and freedom-diminishing war on terror comes crumbling down, the tyrant class needs a new war to keep you in line and ready and willing to relinquish your rights. The targeted “terrorists” are no longer brown people in the Middle East, the new enemies are those who refuse to give up their rights at home.

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10% reported, says the MHRA itself. How many vaccine deaths are labeled Covid deaths?

UK Gov’t Release 30th Report On Adverse Reactions To Covid-19 Vaccines (Tap)

[..] the number of reported adverse reactions to the Pfizer vaccine has increased to 302,146 as of the 18th August. The AstraZeneca jab has fared much worse though, with the total number of adverse reactions now standing at 816,393. There have also been 43,949 adverse reactions to the Moderna jab of which 2.1 million doses have been administered, and 3,148 adverse reactions reported where the brand of vaccine was not specified. This now means the current rate of people suffering a serious adverse reaction after having one of the experimental Covid vaccines stands at 1 in every 142 people, with 1,165,636 adverse reactions having now been reported to the MHRA Yellow Card scheme. But it’s important to remember that this rate only accounts for the adverse reactions that are actually reported, which is estimated to be around only 10% according to the MHRA themselves, meaning the actual rate of adverse reactions occurring is frighteningly higher.

[..] The most concerning disorder to have occurred due to the Covid-19 vaccines, is one that has only recently been reported – Congenital disorders. A congenital disorder is a medical condition that is present at or before birth. These conditions, also referred to as birth defects, can be acquired during the foetal stage of development or from the genetic makeup of the parents. There have been 59 birth defects reported as adverse reactions to the Pfizer vaccine, 93 birth defects reported as adverse reactions to the AstraZeneca vaccine, and 6 birth defects reported as adverse reactions to the Moderna vaccine. Birth defects which include heart disease, cerebral palsy, foetal malformation, and congenital cystic lung –

[..] The total number of nervous system disorders reported as adverse reactions to the Pfizer, AstraZeneca, and Moderna vaccines now stands at 234,270. This includes serious events such as seizure, brain damage, paralysis and stroke. There have been an array of strokes reported to the Pfizer jab and they include 41 cases of cerebral hemorrhage resulting in 8 deaths, 33 cases of ischaemic stroke resulting in 1 death, and 313 cases of cerebrovascular accidents resulting in 13 deaths. The AstraZeneca viral vector injection has however fared much worse so far causing at least 165 cases of cerebral haemmorhage resulting in 45 deaths, 90 cases of cerebral infarction resulting in 5 deaths, and 1,157 cases of cerebrovascular accidents resulting in 44 deaths.

[..] As of the 18th August there have been 302,146 adverse reactions and 508 deaths reported to the MHRA against the Pfizer mRNA injection. As well as 816,393 adverse reactions and 1,056 deaths reported to the MHRA against the AstraZeneca viral vector injection. The Moderna mRNA injection meanwhile has caused at least 43,949 adverse reactions and 17 deaths as of the 18th August 2021. This vaccine has also mainly been administered to younger adults who are least at risk of suffering debilitating disease if infected with Covid-19. Around 1.4 million people have received the Moderna jab which means at least 1 in every 31 people have suffered and adverse reaction and at least 1 in every 82,000 people have sadly died. The overall number of deaths due to all three jabs now stands at 1,609 when including the 28 deaths that have been reported where the brand of vaccine was not specified.

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Good graphs, excellent article.

Interleukin-6 and the Covid-19 Cytokine Storm Syndrome (ERJ)



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Morbid humor, Justin?

Burial Costs Covered For Canadians Killed By Approved Vaccines TSun)

Burial costs will now be covered by Ottawa for individuals killed by federally approved vaccines. According to Blacklock’s Reporter, the department of health will pick up the tab and says the new program “addresses a longstanding gap in Canada’s national immunization programming by providing a timely, no-fault financial support mechanism for all people in Canada, in rare instances where they are seriously and permanently injured performing a public good, being immunized.” A briefing note from the department says vaccine injuries are rare but do happen. “The program will provide death benefits and support for funeral expenses in the rare case of a death as a result of having received a Health Canada authorized vaccine,” said the note Vaccine Injury Support Program.

The department has budgeted $75 million for all claims but said it was unclear how many submissions there could be. Management of the program is contracted to RCGT Consulting. “In the rare event a person in Canada is seriously and permanently injured as a result of vaccination, they should be fairly supported,” wrote department staff. “The Vaccine Injury Support Programprovides financial support to individuals who are seriously and permanently injured due to vaccination with a Health Canada authorized vaccine.” Canada’s COVID-19 health experts admit there are unknown long-term effects of vaccines, but they provide another layer of protection.

Dr. Theresa Tam, chief public health officer, said she has always been realistic about vaccines. “We have never said the vaccine was going to be a 100% effective. But people pick at that concept for unrealistic expectations. So, we have to go out there and set some expectations,” she said, adding the pandemic has been stressful and that “everyone is an armchair epidemiologist.”

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“..the post-first-dose spike..”

Insanity in Vietnam (Berenson)

Vietnam’s success at containing Covid abruptly ended this spring. Its coronavirus epidemic began in May and exploded in late June. Since then, cases have risen 25-fold. On Friday, Vietnam reported more than 17,000 cases, its most ever – more than 10 times as many as it had in all of 2020. Deaths are soaring too. Over the last week, Vietnam has averaged more deaths per-capita than the United States. With this number of cases, individual contact tracing is effectively impossible, even for a centralized and authoritarian state. So Vietnam has implemented far more aggressive lockdowns than it did last year, including bringing in soldiers to enforce quarantines in the southern metropolis of Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon).

[..] maybe the biggest question of all remains unanswered: why now? Inevitably, the media and government are blaming the Delta variant. But the variant was widespread worldwide well before the explosion in cases Vietnam saw two months ago. But Vietnam did see one big change this summer: the beginning of a mass vaccination program. Vietnam didn’t depend on Chinese vaccines, either (not surprising, given the long history of conflict between the two countries). It has mostly used the AstraZeneca DNA/AAV vaccine, along with the Pfizer and Moderna mRNA vaccines – the same trio that have dominated Europe. As of early June, almost no one in Vietnam was vaccinated. Today, almost 20 percent of the country has received at least one dose.

The pattern is exactly the same as we saw in Israel and Britain in January, and many other countries over the spring. The first dose of mass vaccination campaigns is associated with a huge spike in cases. Too many countries have seen this trend for it to be called coincidental. The question is what’s causing it. Possibilities include post-vaccine behavioral changes (hot vaxxed summer!), vulnerable people clustering together at vaccination sites, or (most likely) some short-term vaccine-driven suppression of the immune system. Given that we know now peak mRNA vaccine protection lasts a matter of months at most, the post-first-dose spike is even more important in judging the costs and benefits of vaccines. But vaccine advocates will not even acknowledge the existence of the post-first-dose spike, much less admit that it leaves the case for mass vaccinations even murkier than before.

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Ha ha ha, US testing went up 500% AFTER the FDA called the PCR test unreliable?

The Delta Scam (Jim Quinn)

As of July 4, the entire covid fear narrative was dying out, with cases crashing to new lows and the Big Pharma vaccine profit machine sputtering. That is when those controlling the media narrative began running the stories about the Indian variant and the imminent tragedy. As cases soared over 350,000 per day, the MSM was predicting bodies piling up in the streets. They failed to give context that India has 1.4 billion people, four times the population of the U.S. On a cases per million basis, India’s surge was still 70% lower than the U.S. peak in January. And then the cases collapsed by 75% in a matter of weeks, with no mass rollout of vaccines. But they did distribute copious amounts of ivermectin. Must just be a coincidence. Everyone knows ivermectin is only for cows and horses, per the “experts” at the FDA.


With the Indian case collapse, the purveyors of fear needed to give the Indian variant a new scary name – Delta Variant. So India, with a 10% vaccination rate has seen a complete collapse in cases. Meanwhile, the UK and Israel, with some of the highest vaccination rates in the world, 64% and 60% respectively, have seen huge surges in Delta cases. It’s almost as if the vaccines have created the Delta surge. You might even conclude the vaccines are a complete and utter failure, with significant numbers of adverse reactions, 5 months of limited efficacy, and unknown long-term health effects.

The U.S. “surge” began shortly after July 4th, with the MSM building the Delta fear narrative day after day. Biden, Fauci, Walensky and the rest of the Big Pharma whores did their daily duty of feeding bullshit to the sheep. They bribed corporations, universities and left wing governors to mandate the jab, since they couldn’t mandate it Federally. As they began reporting the case totals again, despite the fact the PCR test was already completely discredited, with the FDA pulling its EUA and taking it off the market as of 12/31, I noticed what they were not reporting – number of tests. The number of reported cases in the U.S. went up by 750% since July 4. Coincidentally, the number of tests grew by over 500% since July 4. Why the tremendous increase in testing? If you want more cases, just do more mass testing of people showing no signs of illness. This is why the death rate is 65% lower than when cases were at the same level in February.

A critically thinking individual might look at the data and conclude these vaccines are enhancing the virus and creating the variants. They might also conclude the Delta variant is far less lethal than the original virus. They might also conclude the unholy alliance between the government, mass media, social media, and Big Pharma have ramped up the fear in order to force vaccinations into the veins of vaxx resisters, instilling vaccine passports, and attempting to install a digital surveillance system to track those who resist and destroy their lives.

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Must be real hard to find out what metal this is. Either that or they won’t tell. Started out with “contaminants”, but yeah, those magnets…

Fears Over Metal Flakes In Moderna Vaccine After Two Deaths (Times)

Two men with no pre-existing illnesses died days after receiving Moderna vaccines from a batch in Japan contaminated with tiny metal flakes. Thirty-nine vaccine vials were found to contain the fragments last week at eight centres in five prefectures, including Tokyo. They were part of three batches made for Moderna in Spain. At least 180,000 people are understood to have been injected from the batches. More than 1.6 million doses have been withdrawn. The men, aged 30 and 38, developed fevers shortly after receiving their second doses early this month and died within days. “At this time we do not have any evidence that these deaths are caused by the Moderna vaccine, and it is important to conduct a formal investigation to determine whether there is any connection,” Moderna and the distributor Takeda Pharmaceutical said.


The material has not yet been identified and experts in Japan doubt that the fragments could pass down needles. The government released the batch numbers so that people would know if they had been injected from the potentially contaminated vials. Norihisa Tamura, the health minister, told Sunday Debate on the public broadcaster NHK that an investigation would establish whether the contamination was linked to the deaths. On Saturday authorities on Okinawa announced that they had found Moderna vials with foreign bodies that did not belong to the identified batches. About 44 per cent of the Japanese population is now fully vaccinated. The country registered nearly 23,000 new cases of coronavirus on Saturday, with cases of serious illness topping 2,000, a new record.

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I get the feeling the community is trying to separate the mutations from the vaccines.

New Covid Variant Detected In South Africa, Most Mutated Variant So Far (JPost)

A new coronavirus variant, C.1.2, has been detected in South Africa and a number of other countries, with concerns that it could be more infectious and evade vaccines, according to a new preprint study by South Africa’s National Institute for Communicable Diseases and the KwaZulu-Natal Research Innovation and Sequencing Platform. The study is awaiting peer review. Scientists first detected C.1.2 in May 2021, finding that it was descended from C.1, which scientists found surprising as C.1 had last been detected in January. The new variant has “mutated substantially” compared to C.1 and is more mutations away from the original virus detected in Wuhan than any other Variant of Concern (VOC) or Variant of Interest (VOI) detected so far worldwide.

While first detected in South Africa, C.1.2 has since been found in England, China, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Mauritius, New Zealand, Portugal and Switzerland. The scientists believe that the number of available sequences of C.1.2 may be an underrepresentation of the spread and frequency of the variant in South Africa and around the world. The study found consistent increases in the number of C.1.2 genomes in South Africa on a monthly basis, rising from 0.2% of genomes sequenced in May to 1.6% in June and then to 2% in July, similar to the increases seen with the Beta and Delta variants there. The study also found that the C.1.2 lineage has a mutation rate of about 41.8 mutations per year, which is nearly twice as fast as the current global mutation rate of the other variants. The scientists stated that this short period of increased evolution was also seen with the Alpha, Beta and Gamma variants, suggesting that a single event, followed by a spike in cases, drove faster mutation rates.

More than half of the C.1.2 sequences have 14 mutations, but additional mutations have been noticed in some of the sequences, suggesting that evolution within the lineage is ongoing, according to the study. More than half (about 52%) of the mutations in the spike region of the C.1.2 sequences have previously been seen in other VOCs and VOIs. The mutations N440K and Y449H, which have been associated with escape from certain antibodies, have also been noticed in C.1.2 sequences. The scientists stressed that the combination of these mutations, as well as changes in other parts of the virus, likely help the virus evade antibodies and immune responses, including in patients who have already been infected with the Alpha or Beta variants.

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Ha ha, they actually did it.

“But it’s all about choice at the end of the day. If you don’t want to get the vax, don’t get the vax. If you do want to get it, get it. But just don’t keep locking up people.”

Australian Truckers Protest Mandatory Vaccines And Lockdowns (ET)

Australian truck drivers have blocked a major highway in the north-eastern state of Queensland in a protest against vaccine mandates and tough border restrictions, causing traffic to back up for several kilometres. The action marks a series of ongoing protests from Australians frustrated with state government COVID-19 lockdowns and mandated restrictions based on emergency public health orders. The drivers parked their prime movers at 5:30 a.m. on the southbound lanes of the M1 highway at Reedy Creek in the Gold Coast portion of the arterial on Monday. The highway is used by tens of thousands of Queenslanders each morning. A banner was unfurled and covered the front of both vehicles, reading: “Truckies Keep Australia Moving, Not Politicians.”

One driver named Brock, who did not give his surname, said the drivers were protesting the Queensland government’s strict health orders that prevented all individuals from entering the state, except for essential workers. Those deemed essential workers need to be involved in skilled construction, farming, or healthcare, and must prove that a Queensland resident cannot do their job. Further, they need to prove they have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. “End all lockdowns, people go back to work, and kids go back to school,” Brock told Nine’s Today show. “That’s all we want out of it; we’ve had enough of it.

“We’ve had a lot the support mate, the people that showed up today is amazing. We appreciate everyone that’s come down,” he added, saying the police had been lenient about the protest, and he respected what they did. “But it’s all about choice at the end of the day. If you don’t want to get the vax, don’t get the vax. If you do want to get it, get it. But just don’t keep locking up people.”

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It can take weeks before power is restored in NOLA. Load imbalance likely took out major transformers.

Hurricane Ida Reversed the Course of the Mississippi River (Gizmodo)

The incredible power of Hurricane Ida was on display on Sunday as the storm reversed the course of the mighty Mississippi River. The river temporarily flowed from south to north on Sunday afternoon after Ida made landfall as a Category 4 storm that underwent rapid intensification. Data from the U.S. Geological Survey shows that a river gauge at Belle Chasse, just southeast of New Orleans, recorded the stunning about-face of the Mississippi River. The Mississippi was discharging roughly 350,000 cubic feet (9,910 cubic meters) of water per second in the days prior to Ida’s arrival. Water moved upstream at a rate of 40,000 cubic feet (1,132 cubic meters) per second. That’s a staggering amount of water to turn around.

Ida is expected to push 16 feet (about 5 meters) of storm surge inland, with the highest inundation covering an area from the petrochemical hub of Port Fourchon to the mouth of the Mississippi. The turnaround of the river is indicative of how powerful that surge has been. It’s a phenomenon we’ve seen with other storms, notably Hurricane Florence in 2018. That contributed to what’s known as compound flooding, in which storm surge pushes water inland where rain is falling. With water pushing ashore, there’s nowhere for the rain to drain. With Ida, that could become a bigger concern as day turns into evening and the storm lingers. The National Hurricane Center noted in its most recent forecast discussion that “Ida’s forward motion has slowed.” Slower motion means bands of rain can repeatedly sweep over a given location, leading to higher rainfall totals and more flooding.

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George Carlin – Germs, Immune System

 

 

 

 

Lake Peigneur: The craziest thing you’ve ever seen. h/t Dave Collum

 

 

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Jun 292021
 
 June 29, 2021  Posted by at 9:01 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  67 Responses »


Rembrandt van Rijn The Adoration of the Magi 1634

 

Conflict of Interest in WHO Recommendation Against Ivermectin (TSN)
Evidence of Antibody Dependent Enhancement? (DE)
Did Pfizer Fail to Perform industry Standard Animal Testing? (TSN)
More Crazy (Denninger)
Singapore Doctors Call To Halt Covid Vaccination Of Teens (RT)
Abu Dhabi To Ban Unvaccinated People From Most Public Places (F.)
Greece Offers Youngsters 150 Euros To Get Vaccinated (K.)
Falsehood Rules (Kunstler)
Google Tumbles As Biden Revives Trump-Era Antitrust Probe (ZH)
Why Giuliani’s Suspension Should Worry All Lawyers (Turley)
Manhattan DA Says No Charges For Trump: Lawyer (ZH)
Biden’s Lawless Bombing of Iraq and Syria (Greenwald)
Nike Partners WIth CCP With New Slogan ‘Just Obey It’ (BBee)
Olympics To Kick Off With Ceremonial Lighting Of The American Flag

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trusted News Initiative (TNI).

The WHO is funded by Big Pharma. “Originally funded entirely by member states, the organization now receives less than 20% of its budget from these states and the rest from donors with their own financial and strategic agendas.”

Conflict of Interest in WHO Recommendation Against Ivermectin (TSN)

All dangerous diseases are best treated early. A major failure of the global COVID-19 strategy has been to wait a week for the disease to become dangerous, when breathing becomes a problem. Early treatment of COVID, even for those with mild symptoms, prevents later hospitalization. There are several early treatment drugs showing promise but ivermectin leads the pack regarding safety, effectiveness and price. Unfortunately, the biggest players in Western mainstream media are members of the Trusted News Initiative (TNI). The TNI is a story for another day but it’s remarkable that big media companies barely report that they have agreed to promote global vaccination and to make sure any “disinformation myths are stopped in their tracks”[i].

Unfortunately, as a result early treatment seems to be seen as a disinformation myth and is not mentioned. Early treatment is vital in treating serious diseases and COVID-19 is no exception. Considering the human and economic cost, the avoidance of early treatment with a very safe, effective and off-patent drug is a criminal tragedy of immense proportions and a winning lottery ticket for some pharmaceutical companies that are designing and selling novel patented drugs that could not compete with ivermectin in a free market. Mercks’ molnupiravir, for instance, is seeking an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the FDA and “Merck will receive approximately $1.2 billion to supply approximately 1.7 million courses of molnupiravir to the United States government.”[ii]

Ivermectin doesn’t need an EUA because it passed trials in 1986. It just needs to be recommended to treat COVID-19. However, if ivermectin was officially recognized as an effective treatment, it would legally prevent molnupiravir’s EUA until it passes trials and thus delay or endanger the $1.2 billion deal. An aggravating factor is the fact that molnupiravir (EIDD-2801) could cause harmful genetic mutations. [iii]

In the face of a public health crisis such as the COVID-19 pandemic, government authorities and international organizations have traditionally looked to the World Health Organization (WHO) for guidance – trusting that the WHO is free of commercial interests. Originally funded entirely by member states, the organization now receives less than 20% of its budget from these states and the rest from donors[iv] with their own financial and strategic agendas. Margret Chan, the previous Director General of the WHO, said in 2015: “I have to take my hat and go around the world to beg for money and when they give us the money [it is] highly linked to their preferences, what they like. It may not be the priority of the WHO, so if we do not solve this, we are not going to be as great as we were”. [v]

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“Majority of Covid deaths are the fully vaccinated and A&E attendance is breaking records”

Evidence of Antibody Dependent Enhancement? (DE)

Are we beginning to see evidence of ‘Antibody Dependent Enhancement’ (ADE) due to the Covid-19 vaccines in the United Kingdom? The latest data on hospitalisations and deaths allegedly due to Covid-19 certainly suggests so. ADE can arise in several different ways but the best-known is dubbed the ‘Trojan Horse Pathway’. This occurs when non-neutralizing antibodies generated by past infection or vaccination fail to shut down the pathogen upon re-exposure. Instead, they act as a gateway by allowing the virus to gain entry and replicate in cells that are usually off limits (typically immune cells, like macrophages). That, in turn, can lead to wider dissemination of illness, and over-reactive immune responses that cause more severe illness. Barry Bloom, MD, PhD, of the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health explanation of ADE is as follows – “The cause of ADE is having antibodies to a virus that don’t neutralize it. That enables the virus to be gobbled up by cells that have receptors for antibodies, but not the virus. That’s the way of getting virus into cells that it ordinarily would not infect,”.


ADE can also occur when neutralizing antibodies (which bind the virus and stop it from causing infection) are present at low enough levels that they don’t protect against infection. Instead, they can form immune complexes with viral particles, which in turn leads to worse illness. [..] In previous clinical trials of vaccine candidates to combat SARS and MERS, the studies each failed during the animal phase due to ADE also known as pathogenic priming or a cytokine storm. Phase three clinical trials are designed to uncover frequent or severe side effects before a vaccine is approved for use, including ADE. But here in lies the problem, none of the Covid-19 vaccines have completed phase three clinical trials. The Pfizer phase three trial is not due to complete until April 6th 2023.

Neurological issues

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Excellent article. Recommended.

Did Pfizer Fail to Perform industry Standard Animal Testing? (TSN)

The current mRNA vaccines are theorized to act locally in draining lymphoid tissue. Formulated lipid nanoparticles that contain mRNA able to produce the spike protein are syringe injected into a muscle such as the deltoid (shoulder muscle). Once the injection occurs, the muscle cells near the injection site are impacted by the mRNA-based vaccine (e.g. the lipid nanoparticles), while much of the dose moves into the intracellular fluid surrounding the muscle cells and consequently drains to lymph nodes. According to this theory, a properly functioning mRNA-based vaccine is delivered into and drives production of the SARS-CoV-2 Spike protein in muscle and lymph node cells. The cells then produce the Spike protein, which is then moved to the surface of these cells where it becomes attached.

The foreign virus Spike protein then triggers the immune system to recognize and attack any cell in the body that is either infected by SARS-CoV-2 or has Spike protein on its surface. The vaccine was designed so that the Spike protein is affixed via a transmembrane anchor region, so that it cannot circulate around the body via the bloodstream. The same general scenario applies to all mRNA-based vaccines as well as recombinant adenoviral vectored vaccines (such as the J&J vaccine) designed to use gene-therapy technology to express Spike protein in cells and tissues. This general strategy is designed to reduce the risk that any residual vaccine dose that does somehow end up in the bloodstream (or organs and tissues) ends up not being a safety risk due to unintended biologic effects.

Spike protein will remain affixed to cell surfaces, and therefore is not released into the blood where circulating Spike might cause problems by binding to its natural target, ACE-2 receptors. However, any cell that has Spike protein (or protein fragments) anchored on its membrane or displayed on MHC antigen-presenting molecules becomes a target for vaccine-activated immune cells and antibodies, which would then attack, damage or kill those cells in the same way that SARS-CoV-2 virus-infected cells would be attacked. In other words, if very active mRNA delivery particles or recombinant adenoviral-vectored vaccines spread throughout the body, the resulting production of the vaccine antigen (Spike, in this case) will both stimulate immunity and also cause those same cells to be attacked by the immune system. If this actually happens, the resulting “vaccine reactogenicity” could resemble clinical symptoms seen with autoimmune syndromes.

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“A consenting adult has the right to choose to do dangerous things.”

More Crazy (Denninger)

HCQ, I remind you, is used by millions of people with Lupus and Rheumatoid Arthritis in the United States alone. If it caused heart attacks in one person out of 150 and screwed up the hearts of 10% of the rest not one doctor would prescribe it for either condition as that is wildly dangerous and will kill people outright a decent percentage of the time. Ivermectin, I remind you, has a record across several billion doses administered of one serious adverse event (defined: lands you in the hospital) in roughly every 600,000 people who take it. It is for this reason that it is considered safe enough to buy over the counter in many nations and is handed out by non-medical personnel all over sub-Saharan Africa. Indeed doing that has basically eliminated river blindness, a disease that formerly devastated entire regions.

As for Covid and other viral infections there is plenty of science on multiple mechanisms of action that are likely involved. Yet pharma, the FDA, NIH and CDC all are aligned against it and did not run large, formal studies for early treatment despite being safer to do so than recommending you take Tylenol or aspirin because there’s no money in it; the drug costs pennies. HCQ is similarly cheap and it too was never formally studied by these so-called “agencies” either. Now let’s talk about the shots. We never give a measles shot to someone who had the measles. Why not? The scientific evidence is that they cannot get any benefit from it. While the measles vaccine is extremely safe and definitely safer than getting the measles there is no such thing as a completely safe drug. Ever.

If you cannot get the measles because you’ve already had it and are immune then irrespective of how low the risk is it is unethical and gross malpractice to give you said shot because it is scientifically impossible for you to benefit from it. The question is always one of risk and benefit, both potential since no drug or vaccine is 100% effective and the risk of contracting an illness is never 100% for the person taking the drug. There is never any other evaluation, which is inherently personal to each individual’s medical situation, that is appropriate, ethical, moral or legal – period. For any drug, vaccine or other medical procedure or act where the benefit is statistically zero it is thus never, under any circumstance, acceptable to recommend, cajole or coerce someone into accepting it because if the potential benefit is zero then any amount of risk is unacceptable, no matter how low.

(Incidentally for the religiously-bent about vaccines generally who have been flooding my email inbox you’re wasting your time; I have long since told my spam filter to throw your repeated screaming into the trashcan unread. My objection is with this specific set of shots because the data says they’re wildly dangerous in healthy people compared with the illness itself, even without early treatment and definitely when compared to outcomes with treatment.) For comparison Tylenol kills about 500 people in the US a year. If every person in the US had used Ivermectin for the last year it would have killed fewer people than that. That is what the data says, and we could have easily handed it out to any and all who wanted it and get the natural data resulting from it.

There was no statistically-measurable risk in doing so compared against common over-the-counter medicines that anyone can buy anywhere at any time and thus there was no ethical, moral or legal justification for failing to do so in the face of a pandemic for which there were no approved and known-effective treatments. A consenting adult has the right to choose to do dangerous things. This is why we test drugs on consenting adults first even through we know they might not only fail to work they might harm you. Only after years or even decades of such testing do we contemplate testing them on children and only when we have a reasonably-full understanding of the risks.

Rogan Kory

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“The medics who signed the letter argued that that the CDC should be given “a few weeks to produce robust and convincing data”

Singapore Doctors Call To Halt Covid Vaccination Of Teens (RT)

A group of medics have penned an “urgent open letter” to Singapore’s expert committee on Covid-19 vaccination, calling for the inoculation of youths to be ceased until the US CDC clarifies why a teenage jab recipient died. Written on “on behalf of many concerned pediatricians, primary care physicians, specialists, surgeons and GPs” and signed by a number of Singaporean medical professionals, the letter was posted on Facebook on Saturday. Its authors urged the authorities to “consider a short delay” in vaccinating youths with messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA) jabs in view of the recent incident in the US. Earlier this week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) started an investigation into the death of a 13-year-old from Saginaw, Michigan, which occurred three days after he got his second shot of an unnamed coronavirus vaccine.

Vaccines made by Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson have received emergency approval in the US, and all three of them are also in use in Singapore. The medics who signed the letter argued that that the CDC should be given “a few weeks to produce robust and convincing data” on the teen’s death and the possibility of a link to the inoculation. They insist the issue is urgent because Singapore is pursuing “one of the most aggressive” mRNA programs in the world, in which at least 200,000 teenage boys are expected to be vaccinated. “Certainly, we do not want to see any more suspected vaccine-related deaths in any young persons in the prime of their life,” the letter said.

As concerns spread, Singaporean parents have also launched a petition, asking the authorities of the island city-state to suspend the vaccination of those under 30, especially school kids from 12 to 15 years of age, until the CDC probe is complete. It has so far been signed by some 2,000 people.

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“The UAE has the highest vaccination rate in the world..”

Abu Dhabi To Ban Unvaccinated People From Most Public Places (F.)

The United Arab Emirates has introduced some of the world’s harshest restrictions for unvaccinated people in its push to encourage uptake of the shot, announcing Monday that residents of its capital city Abu Dhabi who aren’t yet inoculated will be banned from most public places. The emirate’s media office said in a series of tweets that it is introducing the ban to encourage vaccinations and preserve public health, though 93% of target groups have been vaccinated. The ban will go into effect Aug. 20, giving the city’s residents some time to get vaccinated against the virus before the measures are enacted. Once that date rolls around, those without the shot will not be allowed to enter public and private schools, universities, nurseries, shopping centers, restaurants, cafes, gyms, museums, theme parks, resorts and all other retail outlets. The main exceptions are retail outlets selling essential goods, such as supermarkets and pharmacies, which all people will still be allowed to enter regardless of their vaccination status.


The order—which the media office said was approved by the Abu Dhabi Emergency, Crisis and Disaster Committee—will not apply to children under the age of 16 and those who have an official reason to be exempt from vaccination. “The committee stated the decision would enhance safety in areas that have been subject to additional precautionary measures and provide enhanced protection for community members,” the Abu Dhabi Government Media Office said in its statement. The UAE has the highest vaccination rate in the world, boasting a rate of 154 doses administered per 100 people, according to a tracker run by The New York Times. Though it has not shared updated data on how many people have been fully or partially vaccinated, Reuters estimates the number of doses it has administered (over 15 million) means around 77.1% of the country’s population has been fully inoculated.

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Immoral or amoral?

Greece Offers Youngsters 150 Euros To Get Vaccinated (K.)

The Greek government announced it will offer a pre-paid card with 150 euros to young people aged 18-25 to get at least one shot of a vaccine against Covid-19, as an incentive to increase the number of inoculations in the country. The card, dubbed “freedom-pass” by Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, will cover costs in travel and entertainment, such as plane and ferry tickets, hotel bookings, music, theatre and cinema, museums and archaeological sites. Presenting the card at the start of a meeting with ministers on Monday, the prime minister said he acknowledged the toll the long months of lockdown have had on the social life of young people.


“This is a debt to our youth, a gift of gratitude, particularly ahead of the summer. [It is] a ‘thank you’ for their patience and perseverance,” he told the ministers at the televised message. “At the same time, however, it is also an incentive for young people in particular to be vaccinated, who, by their very nature, contribute more to movement. And the more they are shielded [against the virus], the more we will limit the transmission of the virus.” Mitsotakis said this is especially true as countries are facing the more transmissible delta variant of the coronavirus, which targets primarily those who have not been vaccinated “but is threatening everyone.”

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“..a private Chicago-based non-profit called the Center for Tech and Civic Life, which received $350-million from Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg to arrange grants targeted at swing districts in Democratic strongholds such as Milwaukee, Detroit, Philadelphia, and Atlanta, for the purpose of hiring ballot harvesters, among other activities.”

Falsehood Rules (Kunstler)

Now there is one official forensic audit of the 2020 election underway in Maricopa County, Arizona, (the Phoenix metro area), ordered by the State Senate, and some conclusions from phase one, involving the paper ballots, are due to be released this week, with additional phases to come concerning the Dominion voting machines. Many other state legislatures sent delegations to Arizona to learn the ins-and-outs of conducting a forensic audit, and they are making noises about actually doing it. So, in stepped Attorney General Merrick Garland. At the start of the Arizona audit, he sent a letter to the Arizona State Senate threatening to use the Civil Rights Division of the DOJ to halt the audit on the basis of depriving voters of their civil rights. Arizona responded by promising to jail any federal officials who laid their hands on any ballots. That was the end of that gambit for now — they may try it again in phase two.

In the meantime, a county judge in Georgia (one Brian Amero) has ruled that 147,000-odd ballots alleged to have chain-of-custody problems must be made available for inspection, and also that five members of the Fulton County (Atlanta Metro Area) Board of Elections are now individually parties to the lawsuit brought by nine Georgia voters, and may be subject to deposition (being questioned under oath). That is believed to be the beginning of an effort to conduct a full audit in Georgia. So, again, in steps Attorney General Merrick Garland with his Civil Rights Division, led by political activist Kristen Clarke, bringing a lawsuit against the Georgia election reform act passed earlier this year — a shot over Georgia’s bow, shall we say. Ms. Clarke happens to be a colleague of Georgia activist Stacey Abrams, a former Democratic candidate for governor.

Ms. Abrams is also a part-owner of a company, NOWaccount, that does payroll for a private company called Happy Faces, which furnished dozens of poll workers to tally the 2020 election in Georgia, as well as the 2021 US Senate runoff election that put two Democrats, John Ossoff and Raphael Warnock, in office. Elections are supposed to be conducted by public officials, not by private entities. Supposedly, the Georgia election officials turned to Happy Faces because it was a way to avoid hiring workers for less than 30 hours-a-week, which would have otherwise required providing them with health care under ObamaCare, the ACA Act. Was that legal? It has not been adjudicated.

Nor has the much bigger scandal of a private Chicago-based non-profit called the Center for Tech and Civic Life, which received $350-million from Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg to arrange grants targeted at swing districts in Democratic strongholds such as Milwaukee, Detroit, Philadelphia, and Atlanta, for the purpose of hiring ballot harvesters, among other activities. Mr. Zuckerberg met with Kristen Clarke, Stacey Abrams, Al Sharpton, and other Democratic activists at a dinner in 2019, at which he promised to help. Did his help cross any legal boundaries? It has not been investigated, nor has the use of the company he runs, Facebook, in its campaign to influence public opinion by blocking news and deleting accounts of non-Democrats exclusively.

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it’s the ads again.

Google Tumbles As Biden Revives Trump-Era Antitrust Probe (ZH)

Minutes after news that a judge had dismiss an FTC anti-monopoly lawsuit against Facebook sent the social-media giant’s market capitalization past the $1 trillion mark, Google has just been hit by some disappointing news on the anti-trust front. Google shares tumbled heading into the close on reports that the Biden Administration was planning to revive a Trump-era investigation into Google’s display ad business. While a judge has granted some relief for Facebook, potentially taking it out of the sights of the FTC, which is now being led by anti-monopoly pioneer Lina Khan, it’s clear the Biden Administration hasn’t given up on scrutinizing American Big Tech.

According to Bloomberg, which broke the news Monday afternoon, antitrust investigators at the DoJ have stepped up scrutiny of Google’s digital advertising practices in recent months, a sign that the Biden administration is “actively pursuing a probe that started under former President Donald Trump.” DoJ sued Google last year over claims the Alphabet-owned company was abusing its dominance in the internet search market, its biggest business. Any additional legal action, including whether to bring a second suit, will likely depend on whoever is chosen as the assistant attorney general overseeing the antitrust division. It will be up to that person to decide whether to proceed, and it’s possible the government will bring no action against the company.

Staffers from the DoJ’s antitrust office have reportedly interviewed several of Google’s competitors about the firm’s practices in the advertising technology market. The probe places a target on the company’s second-most important business, according to people familiar with the action, who asked not to be identified discussing the early stage probe.

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“..the bar becomes “nothing but a continuation of politics by other means.”

Why Giuliani’s Suspension Should Worry All Lawyers (Turley)

Lawyers often make sensational, false claims that inflame public opinion, such as insisting former Attorney General William Barr violently cleared D.C.’s Lafayette Square last year to arrange for Trump’s controversial photo op outside St. John’s Episcopal Church. The claim outraged many Americans, even though there was no evidence to prove it; several lawyers repeated the photo op myth as fact on TV. An inspector general and a federal court both later debunked the myth, but the damage was done: To this day, many people believe it. Nevertheless, I do not believe any lawyers should be suspended for such claims, which should be protected as free speech. The New York court brushes over the free speech implications of its ruling with a conclusory statement that Giuliani knowingly misrepresented facts, even though it did not afford him a hearing on that or other questions.

It is not enough to declare “Don’t be like Giuliani.” What is missing in this opinion is a clear standard for when the failure to establish a case — as Giuliani failed to do with his election fraud claims — is a disbarring offense. In reality, many cases collapse in court over insufficient evidence. Election challenges are made without access to critical records or data held by election boards or officials — indeed, litigants often go to court to gain such access. Likewise, public interest lawyers often bring cases against the government, which classifies or withholds evidence. When I litigated the Area 51 case, I was suing a base that the government claimed did not exist, and all information about it was classified; we prevailed in establishing environmental violations but only after years of intense litigation and denials.

The concern in this case is that we are seeing a weaponization of bar investigations after a wide (and well-funded) campaign to harass Republican lawyers, their firms and their clients after the 2020 election. And it has worked: Many law firms are unwilling to take on Republican or conservative causes for fear of being targeted. The Giuliani opinion fuels those concerns. Despite a damning account of exaggerations and falsehoods, it often reads more like a venting — rather than a vetting — of grievances against Giuliani. Instead of issuing a well-deserved reprimand, the court declared Giuliani to be a public menace if allowed to continue practicing law, even for the period of his own adjudication. The premature suspension made little sense.

The bar was focused on Giuliani’s public statements, which will continue unabated by any suspension. Nevertheless, the suspension thrilled many in today’s bloodsport politics. Yet while the court seemed to apply a special “Giuliani rule,” it is unlikely to stay that way if — to paraphrase Carl von Clausewitz — the bar becomes “nothing but a continuation of politics by other means.”

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“This is so small that I can’t believe I’m going to have to try a case like this.”

Manhattan DA Says No Charges For Trump: Lawyer (ZH)

President Trump’s attorney said on Monday that Manhattan DA Cy Vance has indicated that he has no plans to charge the Trump Organization with crimes related to allegations of “hush money” payments or manipulated real estate values, according to Politico. New York attorney Ronald Fischetti said that during a meeting last week he asked Vance’s team for any details related to charges up for consideration, to which Vance’s team replied that while they are considering charges against the Trump Organization and individual employees related to alleged failures to pay taxes on corporate benefits – widely reported to include cars and apartments, the potential charges only involve a small number of executives. “We asked, ‘Is there anything else?” Fischetti told Politico. “They said, ‘No.’”


When asked if the meeting touched on allegations made by Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen and by adult film star and director Stormy Daniels, Fischetti replied, “Nothing. Not a word on that.” Fischetti also said that Vance’s team told him they will not bring charges against Trump himself when the first indictment comes down. “They just said, ‘When this indictment comes down, he won’t be charged. Our investigation is ongoing,’” he said. According to the Washington Post, Vance’s team is set to proceed with the charges unless otherwise persuaded not to. Fischetti says he expects them to drop this week or next. “It’s like the Shakespeare play Much Ado About Nothing,” he said, adding “This is so small that I can’t believe I’m going to have to try a case like this.”

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BAU. Twitter: “Defense stocks took off like a rocket when Biden was elected, now up 40%.”

Biden’s Lawless Bombing of Iraq and Syria (Greenwald)

For the second time in the five months since he was inaugurated, President Joe Biden on Sunday ordered a U.S. bombing raid on Syria, and for the first time, he also bombed Iraq. The rationale offered was the same as Biden’s first air attack in February: the U.S., in the words of Pentagon spokesman John Kirby, “conducted defensive precision airstrikes against facilities used by Iran-backed militia groups in the Iraq-Syria border region.” He added that “the United States acted pursuant to its right of self-defense.” Embedded in this formulaic Pentagon statement is so much propaganda and so many euphemisms that, by itself, it reveals the fraudulent nature of what was done.

To begin with, how can U.S. airstrikes carried out in Iraq and Syria be “defensive” in nature? How can they be an act of “self-defense”? Nobody suggests that the targets of the bombing campaign have the intent or the capability to strike the U.S. “homeland” itself. Neither Syria nor Iraq is a U.S. colony or American property, nor does the U.S. have any legal right to be fighting wars in either country, rendering the claim that its airstrikes were “defensive” and an “act of self-defense” to be inherently deceitful. The Pentagon’s description of the people bombed by the U.S. — “Iran-backed militias groups” — is intended to obscure the reality. Biden did not bomb Iran or order Iranians to be bombed or killed.

The targets of U.S. aggression were Iraqis in their own country, and Syrians in their own country. Only the U.S. war machine and its subservient media could possibly take seriously the Biden administration’s claim that the bombs they dropped on people in their own countries were “defensive” in nature. Invocation of Iran has no purpose other than to stimulate the emotional opposition to the government of that country among many Americans in the hope that visceral dislike of Iranian leaders will override the rational faculties that would immediately recognize the deceit and illegality embedded in the Pentagon’s arguments.

Beyond the propagandistic justification is the question of legality, though even to call it a question dignifies it beyond what it merits. There is no conceivable Congressional authorization — none, zero — to Biden’s dropping of bombs in Syria. Obama’s deployment of CIA operatives to Syria and years of the use of force to overthrow Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad never had any Congressional approval of any kind, nor did Trump’s bombing of Assad’s forces (urged by Hillary Clinton, who wanted more), nor does Biden’s bombing campaign in Syria now. It was and is purely lawless, illegal.

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“Chief Marketing Officer Bingbong Van Hummus”

Nike Partners WIth CCP With New Slogan ‘Just Obey It’ (BBee)

On the heels of the CEO proudly declaring Nike is a brand “of China, and for China,” the company has unveiled a new marketing campaign honoring the glorious Chinese Communist Party with the inspiring slogan “Just Obey It.” “The idea of obedience to brutal and murderous regimes really encapsulates the ethos Nike is going for as a brand,” said Chief Marketing Officer Bingbong Van Hummus. “The People’s Republic of China represents our highest ideals, and we hope to inspire athletes around the world to join us in the most important thing any high-performer can do: Just Obey.”


New apparel featuring the “Just Obey It” slogan is already being produced in Uyghur concentration camps by slaves, and Nike is optimistic about having their new products in the hands of progressive American athletes in the next few weeks. “As long as we don’t run into any delays– you know, from our slaves refusing to obey, we’ll be shipping from the beautiful and powerful country of China very soon!” said Van Hummus. Nike also announced they will be releasing a new Uyghur-inspired shoe with built-in iron shackles.

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“..a beloved pastime where American athletes who were given every opportunity to succeed get to show how much they hate America..”

Olympics To Kick Off With Ceremonial Lighting Of The American Flag

The 2020 Olympic Games will be kicking off next month with the ceremonial lighting of the American flag, a beloved pastime where American athletes who were given every opportunity to succeed get to show how much they hate America. “Before the Games, American athletes will get to show much they hate their country by taking the ceremonial torch and burning the flag,” said one commentator on ESPN. “We always feel the importance and gravity of this moment at every Olympic Games. As the torchbearer approaches the flag and lights it up, solemnly declaring to everyone that the U.S. is a horribly racist and oppressive country, I can’t help but shed a few tears.” “Stunning and, you guessed it, brave.” One Chinese gymnast suggested she would burn her own country’s flag as well, since the government kidnapped her family and forced her to compete at gunpoint, but she has since disappeared.

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“What made medicine fool people for so long was that its successes were prominently displayed and its mistakes (literally) buried.”
– Nassim Nicholas Taleb

 

 

 

 


The most detailed image ever of a human cell. It was made using 3D data from X-rays, nuclear MRI, and cryo-electron microscopy. The wildest part? We have 100 TRILLION of these inside us.

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in virustime. Click at the top of the sidebars to donate with Paypal and Patreon.

 

Jun 242021
 


Edward Hopper Rooms by the sea 1951

 

The Jabs Must Be BANNED (Denninger)
Fully Vaccinated Israelis Exposed To “Delta” May Be Forced To Quarantine (ZH)
Israel Urges Parents To Vaccinate Kids Ages 12-15 (JPost)
WHO Official: Mask Mandates, Social Distancing Must Continue Indefinitely (SN)
Optimizing Decision-Making Processes in Times of COVID-19 (FIP)
More Than 2m Adults In England Have Had Long Covid For Over 12 Weeks (G.)
England Set to Drop Face Mask Rules After Huge Economic Impact Revealed (SN)
Pursuing Truth In Covid Drug Treatment Amid A Censored Media Landscape (Hecker)
Hillary Clinton Privately Warned France About Wuhan P4 Lab (HE)
Elephants’ 500km-Trek Across China Baffles Scientists (BBC)
High Court Delays as Assange Remains in Jail (Craig Murray)

 

 

 

 

 

 

“If you coerced some young person to get the jab and they get hammered you should forfeit your own children’s lives as you are the reason they got ****ed.”

The Jabs Must Be BANNED (Denninger)

… in those under 18 and strongly discouraged in healthy adults under 50. Those who promoted them in people under the age of 30 in addition must face justice. There was never any science supporting it on a risk:benefit basis. The CDC documents about 35 total Covid-related deaths in people under the age of 18 years all the way back to March of 2020. This table is utterly gob-smacking damnable and is what we get for “Warp Speed” — a litany of serious harms, many of which will wind up as deaths — more deaths in those under 18 than Covid caused.

The experience .vs. expected rate is anywhere from ten to one hundred times higher than “random chance” in those under 24 years old, and form 3-30 times higher in those under 30. If we presume that one in ten of these cases will eventually kill the person involved, which is likely conservative (the usual expectation is that half of these cases in the population generally that result in hospitalization eventually progress to heart failure and either a transplant or death within five years) these “side effects” will kill more people in the under-25 group than Covid has all the way back to the start of the pandemic. The others, who are not killed, will wind up with monstrous medical bills they will have to pay and some amount of permanent damage to their cardiac health.

This is from one side effect alone. Only those over 50 have an incidence of this result that is inline with expectations; everyone younger is either at or beyond the upper boundary. In addition this data is almost-certainly incomplete as VAERS is a non-mandatory system and thus does not capture all events. The degree of under-reporting is not able to be accurately bracketed but that it occurs is an absolute fact. Therefore these reports are floors, not ceilings, and as such must be taken as a lower boundary only, yet even in that context they demonstrate utterly unacceptable risk that, in any ordinary civil proceeding would lead to strict liability.

THESE SHOTS MUST BE IMMEDIATELY STOPPED FOR ALL HEALTHY PERSONS UNDER THE AGE OF 30 and strongly recommended against up to the age of 50 years unless the person receiving them has a serious morbid condition and has been tested negative for prior exposure to the virus itself. That the CDC delayed this meeting for “Juneteenth” ought to get people imprisoned; this is an immediate emergency action item and to postpone it was utterly indefensible.

Any college administration that continues to hold forth a “requirement” for these shots in students should have their children put up as collateral to face the same outcome as any of the students who die as a result of these jabs, with said bond being good for the next ten years since myocarditis often leads to heart failure with the next five years in people it strikes. If you coerced some young person to get the jab and they get hammered you should forfeit your own children’s lives as you are the reason they got ****ed.

Administration of these shots to a previously-recovered person under 50 is, on the strength of this data, gross negligence and, if they get hit, attempted manslaughter or, if the person ultimately suffers heart failure, actual manslaughter. And no, gross negligence is not covered by the “immunity” that HHS gave the vaccine manufacturers and health professionals; any person or organization administering such a shot to someone who is healthy and under 30 should be immediately sued as their so-called “protection” is presumptively void.

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Geert VanDen Bossche: FAQ updated: May 25, 2021

[#13 ]How can it be explained that in Israel it seems that the massive vaccination has almost stopped the pandemic and no dramatic effects are being observed over people that have been vaccinated?

It’s just a matter of weeks for a surge in Israel to occur due to resistance of the virus to vaccinal antibodies in vaccinees. I expect this surge to occur before summer.

Fully Vaccinated Israelis Exposed To “Delta” May Be Forced To Quarantine (ZH)

As concerns about the threat posed by the “Delta” variant, a mutant strain of COVID-19 first discovered in India that’s believed to be much more dangerous than rival strains, intensify, Israeli health officials have just been given the authority to quarantine pretty much anybody who is exposed to “Delta”, even if the individual is already fully vaccinated, Reuters reports. The heavy-handed decision comes after a warning by new Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett on Tuesday over new outbreaks caused by “Delta” . Bennett complained that daily infections have been rising again in Israel after weeks of a low plateau credited to the country’s record mass-vaccination drive.

Under the updated Health Ministry directive, vaccinated or formerly infected people can be ordered to self-isolate for up to 14 days if authorities suspect they may have passed in “close contact with a carrier of a dangerous virus variant.” This could include having been passengers on the same plane, the ministry said, a possible dampener on Israel’s gradual opening of its borders to vaccinated summer tourists. Addressing the Knesset (Israel’s parliament), Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz said fines of “thousands of shekels” might be levied against Israeli citizens or residents who travel to countries blacklisted as high COVID-19 risks.

On June 16, the Health Ministry listed Argentina, Brazil, South Africa, India, Mexico and Russia as off-limits to Israeli citizens or residents unless they receive special permission. Some 55% of Israel’s 9.3MM population have received both doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, and a steep drop in cases had prompted most economic restrictions to be lifted. But just days earlier, Israel announced plans to start vaccinating teenagers between the ages of 12 and 15.

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There you go. Why bother about what the WHO says? What do they know anyway?

Israel Urges Parents To Vaccinate Kids Ages 12-15 (JPost)

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz and other relevant officials and experts, including transportation, interior and education ministers met Sunday night to decide on new measures to address the risk of increased morbidity following a number of coronavirus outbreaks at several Israeli schools. They agreed to task some additional 250 police officers to enforce isolation requirements for those returning from abroad, build a new testing complex at Ben-Gurion Airport and increase the number of testing stations, as well as carry out a communication campaign to foster awareness of the importance of respecting quarantine regulations among the public.


In addition, the authorities will investigate the gap between the number of violations of quarantine and the fines given, and will consider the position of parents whose unvaccinated children do not quarantine after returning from abroad. The ministers also confirmed that Israelis are not going to be allowed to fly to countries under travel ban – Argentina, Brazil, India, Mexico, Russia and South Africa, unless they obtain a special permission from the dedicated government committee. A further meeting to discuss the issues related to the coronavirus will be scheduled in the next few days.

Tucker WHO

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Sorry, bud, not going to happen.

WHO Official: Mask Mandates, Social Distancing Must Continue Indefinitely (SN)

A top WHO official says that mask mandates and social distancing should continue indefinitely in order to protect against new variants of COVID-19. The comments were made on Sky News by Special Envoy on Covid for the World Health Organisation (WHO). Dr David Nabarro. Nabarro suggested that there would be a long list of mutations of the Indian variant which would in some cases evade the protection offered by vaccines. “We will go from Delta to Lambda and then on to the other Greek letters, that’s inevitable, and some of these variants will be troublesome,” he said. “I’m basically saying variants are going to go on coming. That’s part of life, we need to pick them up fast, we need to move quickly if we see them in a certain location, we need to build the management of variants into what we call our Covid-ready strategy, which is going to be the pattern for the foreseeable future,” he added.


According to Nabarro, mask mandates and social distancing need to remain in place for the foreseeable future “as part of our defence” against COVID, particularly in regions which have high infection rates. As we highlighted earlier, England is set to drop all face mask rules on July 19 after it was revealed that they were having a massive negative impact on businesses and wiping billions off the economy. Several government advisers have called for coronavirus restrictions to continue forever, not just to defend against COVID, but also to fight influenza. Former Communist Party member and SAGE adviser Susan Michie said earlier this month that mask mandates and social distancing should continue “forever” and that people should adopt such behaviour just as they did with wearing seatbelts. It never ends.

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Referenced by Robert Malone.

Optimizing Decision-Making Processes in Times of COVID-19 (FIP)

The effectiveness of policymakers’ decision-making in times of crisis depends largely on their ability to integrate and make sense of information. The COVID-19 crisis confronts governments with the difficult task of making decisions in the interest of public health and safety. Essentially, policymakers have to react to a threat, of which the extent is unknown, and they are making decisions under time constraints in the midst of immense uncertainty. The stakes are high, the issues involved are complex and require the careful balancing of several interests, including (mental) health, the economy, and human rights. These circumstances render policymakers’ decision-making processes vulnerable to errors and biases in the processing of information, thereby increasing the chances of faulty decision-making processes with poor outcomes.

Prior research has identified three main information-processing failures that can distort group decision-making processes and can lead to negative outcomes: (1) failure to search for and share information, (2) failure to elaborate on and analyze information that is not in line with earlier information and (3) failure to revise and update conclusions and policies in the light of new information. To date, it has not yet been explored how errors and biases underlying these information-processing failures impact decision-making processes in times of crisis. In this narrative review, we outline how groupthink, a narrow focus on the problem of containing the virus, and escalation of commitment may pose real risks to decision-making processes in handling the COVID-19 crisis and may result in widespread societal damages.

Hence, it is vital that policymakers take steps to maximize the quality of the decision-making process and increase the chances of positive outcomes as the crisis goes forward. We propose group reflexivity—a deliberate process of discussing team goals, processes, or outcomes—as an antidote to these biases and errors in decision-making. Specifically, we recommend several evidence-based reflexivity tools that could easily be implemented to counter these information-processing errors and improve decision-making processes in uncertain times.

Tucker Robert Malone

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Hmmm. Not sure. Many healthy people also have “fatigue-related symptoms” due to lockdowns.

More Than 2m Adults In England Have Had Long Covid For Over 12 Weeks (G.)

More than 2 million adults in England have experienced coronavirus symptoms lasting over 12 weeks, government data suggests – double the previous estimate for long Covid. The study, one of the largest to date, found that people with ongoing symptoms tended to fall into two categories: those with respiratory symptoms, who often experienced more severe illness when they first got sick, and a second group with fatigue-related symptoms. Like previous studies, it found that women were more commonly affected and that the prevalence of ongoing symptoms increased with age. Researchers described the findings as “alarming”.

The React-2 study is a government-funded population surveillance study that uses finger-prick antibody tests from randomly selected adults in England to assess how far coronavirus has spread. Between September and February, 508,707 participants were also asked whether they thought they had had Covid and about the presence and duration of 29 different symptoms. The research, which has not yet been peer-reviewed, found that 37.7% of those who had symptomatic Covid experienced at least one symptom lasting 12 weeks or more – equivalent to 2 million people – while 14.8% experienced three or more persistent symptoms.

“The scale of the problem is quite alarming,” said Prof Kevin McConway, emeritus professor of applied statistics at the Open University. “The results can’t tell us clearly how serious those symptoms were in terms of their effects on the patients’ lives. Some may not be very serious, but some of them certainly are, and these results clearly point out how vital it is to understand them properly and to provide adequate treatment and support services for the people involved.”

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“The Science”.

England Set to Drop Face Mask Rules After Huge Economic Impact Revealed (SN)

England is set to drop all face mask rules on July 19th after it was revealed that keeping such restrictions in place is costing the economy billions and will force many businesses to close. “The requirement to wear facemasks on public transport and in shops will be replaced with guidance advising people to wear masks in certain circumstances, rather than compelling them,” reports the Times. The decision follows the findings of an internal economic impact assessment produced by the government’s Events Research Programme which detailed the massive impact social distancing measures are having on businesses. Politico Playbook reveals that, “keeping any measures would cost the economy billions and see many businesses close.”


Specifically, indoor seated venues such as the arts, cinemas and business events would achieve just 59 per cent of their 2019 turnover if restrictions remain, costing them a whopping £4.88 billion over the next year. Even if the only remaining restriction kept in place is face masks, “The entire events industry would reach just 82 percent of its 2019 turnover. Indoor seated venues would get just 72 percent. Indoor non-seated just 65 percent. Outdoor non-seated venues would manage just 82 percent of their 2019 figure.” The events industry as a whole is bringing in only 60 per cent of normal revenue under the current restrictions, which will likely continue until July 19th.

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Gotta love her.

Pursuing Truth In Covid Drug Treatment Amid A Censored Media Landscape (Hecker)

Finally covering the story on COVID drug treatments that I wasn’t allowed to air on FOX. A look at why one Houston hospital has a dramatically lower COVID death rate than anywhere else and the ways the media skated around the facts at that hospital. [..] The death rate from COVID-19 is dramatically low at United Memorial Medical Center in Houston, TX compared to other hospitals across the nation and the world. Despite Dr. Joseph Varon’s popularity on TV, news personalities avoid questions of why he’s having success treating his patients. As it turns out, he’s using drugs the WHO and CDC recommend against.

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Bioweapons.

Hillary Clinton Privately Warned France About Wuhan P4 Lab (HE)

In a leaked State Department cable from 2009, then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton warned that the Wuhan Institute of Virology could lead to “biological weapons proliferation concern.” The cable, obtained via Wikileaks, was sent from the State Department in June 2009 to all embassies in member nations ahead of the Australia Group plenary session in Paris, September 21-25, 2009. The Australia Group is an international export control forum organized to prevent the spread of technologies and research that could be used in chemical and biological weapons. All Five Eyes nations are members of the group, including the EU, India, Japan, and South Korea. China is not a member of the group.

The cable stated, “We believe it is important to focus on emerging chemical and biological technologies, trends in the trade of CBW-related goods and threats.” When it came to France, Secretary Clinton’s cable noted: “The U.S. believes participants would benefit from hearing about your experiences assisting China in setting up a Biosafety Level-4 (BSL-4) laboratory at the Wuhan Institute of Virology from the export control and intangible technology transfer perspectives. We are particularly interested to know how China plans to vet incoming foreign researchers from countries of biological weapons proliferation concern.”

More broadly on the question of China’s biological weapons program, Secretary Clinton’s cable noted: “The U.S. believes AG members would be interested in any information you can share related to China and North Korea, specifically information related to: • China’s Institutes of Biological Products (locations in Beijing and Wuhan), to include overhead imagery analysis, if possible. • Your perceptions of the CBW proliferation activities by Chinese entities. • Your perceptions of Chinese government efforts to enforce its export control rules.”

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Is the matriarch disoriented?

Elephants’ 500km-Trek Across China Baffles Scientists (BBC)

Elephants are by nature fiercely intelligent beasts and experts who study them day in day out already know a great deal about them. And yet a herd of endangered elephants in China has completely dumbfounded scientists globally, while captivating an entire nation in the process. It’s not unusual for elephants to move small distances. But this herd has been lumbering its way across China for more than a year now. The elephants have now strayed almost 500km (310 miles), a mammoth trek from their original habitat. It’s thought that they started their journey last spring from Xishuangbanna National Nature Reserve in the southwest of the country, near the border with Myanmar and Laos.

They began moving north and in the last few months, the elephants have popped up in a number of villages, towns and cities. They’ve been seen smashing down doors, raiding shops, “stealing” food, playing around in the mud, taking a bath in a canal and napping in the middle of a forest. They’ve also been spotted hoovering up crops in their wake and moseying into people’s houses – on one occasion, lining up in a courtyard to drink water, successfully turning on a tap with their trunks. It is thought they have started to move south again, and were last spotted in Shijie – a town near the city of Yuxi.

It’s unclear whether they are headed back, or why they even embarked on this journey in the first place – the farthest known movement by elephants in the country. Or what might come next. “The truth is, no-one knows. It is almost certainly related to the need for resources – food, water, shelter – and this would make sense given the fact that, in most locations where Asian elephants live in the wild, there is an increase in human disturbances leading to habitat fragmentation, loss and resource reduction,” Joshua Plotnik, assistant professor of elephant psychology at Hunter College, City University of New York, told the BBC.

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Treatment of Murray is scandalous too, but nothing like Assange. John McAfee’s death is worrisome in this regard.

High Court Delays as Assange Remains in Jail (Craig Murray)

Julian Assange remains in a maximum-security jail, despite never being sentenced for anything but a long ago served spell for bail-jumping, and despite the U.S. government’s request for extradition having been refused. It is approaching six months since I was in court to hear the decision rejecting Assange’s extradition, and it was in the same week that Magistrate Vanessa Baraitser ordered Assange be kept in jail pending a U.S. appeal. Since then, the U.S. has submitted its appeal, which is somewhat intemperate in its efforts to discredit a number of highly distinguished expert witnesses at the hearing. The defense has submitted its response, including notice of points, where Baraitser found for the U.S. that the defense intend to counter-appeal.

Then for over three months — nothing. The High Court has not only not set a date for the U.S. appeal, it has not even indicated if the U.S. appeal meets the bar to be heard. There is some thought that the appeal lacks any arguable points of law and may be simply rejected. But the seemingly leisurely approach of the High Court to look at the matter is entirely inappropriate given that, in the meantime, an innocent man is suffering the most extreme form of incarceration available in the U.K. Assange’s status is that his extradition has been rejected. He ought not to be in jail at all, let alone in such harsh conditions. By contrast, I am sitting in my study despite being sentenced to eight months in jail. I am at liberty while the U.K. Supreme Court decides whether to hear my appeal.

My lawyers believe, from their contact with the court administrators, that it is entirely possible that the Supreme Court will decide on whether to take my appeal, within the four-week suspension of my jail sentence granted by Judge Lady Dorrian. This is because otherwise I might be imprisoned. Why can the Supreme Court potentially decide whether to hear my appeal so quickly due to the threat of imprisonment, when the High Court is taking six times or more as long to decide whether to hear the U.S. appeal, when an innocent man is already imprisoned? It makes no sense. It is not due to complexity: while of course Julian’s case is more important, any points of law at issue in the U.S. appeal are notably less complex than in my own appeal. To me, the only possible explanation is the determination of the state to keep Julian imprisoned at all costs.

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November 30, 2019.

“Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty & well preserved body; but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, & loudly proclaiming “Wow! What a Ride!”
~Hunter S. Thompson

 

 

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Jun 222021
 
 June 22, 2021  Posted by at 8:57 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , ,  72 Responses »


Edward Hopper People in the sun 1963

 

More Australians Have Died From AstraZeneca-Related Clots Than Covid (USAT)
Sen. Johnson: Media Suppress Information About Over 5,000 Vaccine Deaths (OAN)
Lab Lies: A Conflict of Interest for Dr. Daszak (HE)
Vaccines Exhibit “Reduced Efficacy” Against “Delta” Variant: WHO Doctor (ZH)
The WHO Is NUTS (Dr. No)
Lockdown Trauma Causing 5-Year-Olds to Suffer Panic Attacks (SN)
WHO To Establish First Vaccine Tech Transfer Hub In South Africa (F24)
UK Crony Capitalism: They Didn’t Want To Reveal These Names
Thinking Out Loud (Kunstler)
Julian Assange’s Continued Imprisonment Is A Test For Bitcoin’s Values (F.)

 

 

Note: the text says 52,000 spontaneous abortions.

 

 

Unsafe

 

 

1 death from COVID, 2 from blood clots. Technically true, but a weird headline for USA Today.

More Australians Have Died From AstraZeneca-Related Clots Than Covid (USAT)

Australia’s top medical officer on Monday urged countrymen who have received an AstraZeneca COVID shot to “not delay” getting the second dose – even though the vaccine has been linked to more deaths than COVID in Australia this year. Chief Medical Officer Paul Kelly, after a National Cabinet meeting, reiterated the benefits of vaccination and encouraged Australians to stay vigilant for symptoms of COVID-19. He told Australia’s ABC network that the benefits of the AstraZeneca vaccine in combating COVID-19 “far outweighed” the risks of developing a very rare blood clotting syndrome. Two women in Australia have died from the blood clots. The only COVID fatality this year was an 80-year-old traveler who died in April after being infected overseas and diagnosed in hotel quarantine. Last week authorities recommended that the AstraZeneca vaccine be given only to people 60 or over; people 50-59 were encouraged to get the Pfizer vaccine instead.

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How did he become the sole truth teller?

Sen. Johnson: Media Suppress Information About Over 5,000 Vaccine Deaths (OAN)

Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) highlighted reports of a rising number of deaths caused by coronavirus vaccines. He announced the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has reported thousands of deaths from side effects of experimental vaccines. The Republican senator argued Dr. Anthony Fauci and various media outlets have been turning a blind eye to warning signals from the Vaccine Adverse Event Warning System from the CDC, which has reported about 5,000 deaths. Johnson stressed there are safe and effective treatments for COVID-19, such as hydroxychloroquine, and Democrat calls for mass vaccination have been misleading.


“Over 1,700 within days zero, one and two of getting vaccinated. We have thousands of people who have permanent disabilities, 20,000 hospitalizations,” he expressed. “That, quite honestly, compares to less than 200 deaths per year in the entire 30 year history of the VAERS system with other vaccines.” Johnson went on to say Big Tech and mainstream media are still censoring the information about early treatments for COVID-19, which must be investigated. He argued that American people will continue to suffer the consequences of misleading information and the ignorance of leading health experts.

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Daszak was removed from the Covid-19 commission yesterday.

Lab Lies: A Conflict of Interest for Dr. Daszak (HE)

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been much debate about the origins, treatment and rushed vaccines. Many doctors have been interviewed and consulted, with varying opinions about the virus, research, and the best medicines on the market to help those afflicted with the virus. One such doctor is Peter Daszak, a zoologist and president of the Eco-Health Alliance, a group based in New York City. His bio on the site says that his company is a US-based organization that conducts research and outreach programs on global health, conservation and international development. Unfortunately, when he participated in a statement for the medical journal, The Lancet, with other medical professionals, he was not 100% forthcoming. There may have been some factors that swayed his professional opinions on the COVID-19 virus and the Wuhan Institute of Virology.

Now we know that EcoHealth gave over $600k in taxpayer dollars to The Wuhan Institute of Virology, and even more through grants. The NY Post and Vanity Fair both did reports about these connections, and discovered some troubling connections: The nonprofit, which says it’s “dedicated to protecting wildlife and public health from the emergency of disease,” has received as much as $15 million a year in grant money from various federal agencies, Vanity Fair said. EcoHealth has used those grants to fund controversial “gain-of-function” research — which can increase the infectiousness and virulence of viruses — at facilities that include the Wuhan Institute of Virology, according to Vanity Fair.

The WIV received about $600,000 from a five-year, $3 million-plus grant that Vanity Fair said EcoHealth got from the US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, which is headed by Dr. Anthony Fauci. Daszak was questioned in London about his visit to the Wuhan Lab in January of this year. Daszak was the only American to visit the lab with the World Health Organization. His statement regarding that trip VIA Vanity Fair: “…Daszak admitted that the group didn’t ask to inspect the WIV’s database of 22,000 virus samples and sequences, a decision he defended by saying that “a lot of this work has been conducted with EcoHealth Alliance,” Vanity Fair said.” Now, the Lancet, which is widely peer-reviewed, is making adjustments to the statement Daszak participated in so as to inform of his bias and influence. From the Lancet :

“In February 2020, 27 public health experts co-authored a Correspondence in The Lancet (“Statement in support of the scientists, public health professionals, and medical professionals of China combatting COVID-19”), supporting health professionals and physicians in China during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic. In this letter, the authors declared no competing interests. Some readers have questioned the validity of this disclosure, particularly as it relates to one of the authors, Peter Daszak.”

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A harmless variant?!

Vaccines Exhibit “Reduced Efficacy” Against “Delta” Variant: WHO Doctor (ZH)

As the mutant COVID-19 strain known as “Delta” picks up steam across Europe and the US, one of the WHO’s leading doctors has just expressed concern about recent research published in the Lancet showing that the first generation of COVID-19 vaccines aren’t as effective at protecting against “Delta”. Answering a question from a reporter during the organization’s regular Monday briefing in Geneva, Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove said that there is data “showing a reduction in neutralization” for the Delta variant, but not as much as the “Beta” variant – better known as the mutant strain that was first discovered in South Africa. She continued on, noting that the first generation of vaccines are still highly effective:

“Having said that, these vaccines are still highly effective, they produce enough antibodies to protect against serious disease and death. While we are seeing some reduced efficacy, they are still effective at preventing severe disease and death including against the delta variant.” Ultimately, the WHO needs to vaccinate as many people as quickly as possible – which is the goal of Covax, the WHO’s program to vaccinate the world – to give dangerous variants less opportunity to take root and spread. “The goal of Covax is that we need those who are most at risk to severe disease, and those who are most exposed, to receive those vaccines and to be protected,” Dr. Kerkhove said.

To learn more about vaccine efficacy, the WHO has been “working with a global network…to get these studies under way…and to look at real-world efficacy data as well.” New research is coming in “fast and furious” and WHO is doing everything it can to determine what’s relevant and what’s not. The agency remains vigilant, however, because they fear that over time a growing number of “double” or “triple” mutants could further erode the efficacy of the first generation of vaccines. What’s more, “there may be a time where we have a constellation of mutations that arise in a variant” that will cause vaccines to lose potency entirely.

UK Delta variant

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Untested.

The WHO Is NUTS (Dr. No)

The normal development process for drugs, including vaccines, includes pharmacokinetic (how a dug moves through the body) studies of biodistribution (where the drug, or vaccine, ends up in the body, and when). In the ordinary course of development, these pre-clinical animal studies are comprehensive and thorough, but in the case of covid vaccine development and approval, regulatory authorities lowered the bar considerably. The MHRA’s Reg 174 Information for Healthcare Professionals on Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, for example, drops the bar through the floor (“5.2 Pharmacokinetic properties Not applicable.”), while in its long and complicated lay summary of the vaccine it says “Pharmacokinetic studies have not been conducted with COVID-19 mRNA Vaccine BNT162b2 and are generally not considered necessary to support the development and licensure of vaccine products…”.

The EMA (European Medicines Agency, Europe’s equivalent to our MHRA) is happily singing along on the same hymn sheet: “No traditional pharmacokinetic or biodistribution studies have been performed with the vaccine candidate BNT162b2”. Instead the regulators relied on studies that use surrogates for the vaccine. The results are not easy to find: those for biodistribution are buried deep in a Pfizer report submitted to the Japanese regulators in Japanese which defeats even google translate. [..] The surrogate used in the biodistribution study uses the same LNP (lipid nanoparticle) RNA technology as the Pfizer/Biontech vaccine, and there are no reasons to suppose its biodistribution is significantly different to the vaccine’s distribution, allowing it to pass muster for the vaccine, at least in the regulators’ eyes.

But we should apply a caveat. Animal studies are only an indication of how a drug will behave in humans, because different species handle drugs in different ways. Nonetheless, it is an indication, and furthermore, it is all we have. After giving a large dose (getting on for 500 times the normal vaccine dose per kilogram of body weight used in humans) of a radio-actively labelled version of the surrogate to rats, researchers turned off the lights, and watched, observing when and where the rats started to glow in the dark.

Tucker WHO

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“..an extra 1.5 million children and young people will require mental health support..”

Lockdown Trauma Causing 5-Year-Olds to Suffer Panic Attacks (SN)

Children in the UK as young as five are suffering panic attacks and other psychological trauma as a result of COVID lockdowns, leaving 1.5 million kids in need of mental health treatment, according to a new report. NHS leaders say that the impact of repeated lockdowns has left children fearful of leaving their homes or meeting their friends amid an explosion of “locked-in trauma.” “Forecasts seen by this newspaper state that an extra 1.5 million children and young people will require mental health support “as a direct impact of the pandemic” during the next three to five years,” reports the Telegraph. “The calculations from the Centre for Mental Health, involving NHS economists, suggest demand will be as much as three times greater than the capacity of mental health services.”


One individual said that her daughter had a panic attack over a planned play date, while another parent said his 5-year-old was housebound and unable to go to school due to being traumatized by lockdown propaganda. With the NHS overwhelmed, child psychologist Maryhan Baker says demand for her services has doubled in recent months. “It’s going to get worse before it gets better. There are a lot of children who were maybe just a bit anxious before the pandemic presenting now with compulsions, eating disorders, self-harm and other control behaviours,” she said.

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Spread the goodies.

WHO To Establish First Vaccine Tech Transfer Hub In South Africa (F24)

South Africa will host the continent’s first Covid-19 vaccine production facility, as President Cyril Ramaphosa said Monday Africa now understood that doses would “never come” from elsewhere in time to save lives. Ramaphosa joined the World Health Organization (WHO) and French President Emmanuel Macron in announcing the new hub for Messenger RNA coronavirus vaccine technology. But as the project will take time to get off the ground, no vaccines are expected from it until next year. At tech transfer hubs, the technology is established at industrial scale, while interested manufacturers can receive training and any necessary licences to the technology.

“The ability to manufacture vaccines, medicines and other health-related commodities will help to put Africa on a path to self-determination,” Ramaphosa told a WHO virtual press conference via video-link. “It’s been shown now that we just cannot continue to rely on vaccines that are made outside of Africa because they never come. They never arrive on time and people continue to die.” The hub is seen by the Geneva-based WHO as a way to combat the vast inequality in access to vaccines between the world’s wealthiest and poorest nations. WHO chief scientist Soumya Swaminathan said it could take nine to 12 months before Covid-19 vaccines could be produced in South Africa using tested and approved processes.

Under the tech transfer hub system, the WHO and its partners bring in the production know-how, quality control and necessary licences to enable a rapid roll-out. At the South African hub, the bio-pharmaceutical company Biovac will act as developer; the Afrigen biotechnology firm will be the manufacturer; and a consortium of universities will provide the scientific know-how. Messenger RNA genetic technology — as used in the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna coronavirus jabs — trains the body to reproduce spike proteins similar to those found on the coronavirus. When exposed to the real virus later, the body recognises the spike proteins and is able to fight them off. The WHO said it would “continue its assessment of potential mRNA technology donors and will launch subsequent calls for other technologies, such as viral vectors and proteins, in coming months”.

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Stories like these in many countries.

UK Crony Capitalism: They Didn’t Want To Reveal These Names

Good Law Project is now able to reveal the names of six more companies awarded PPE contracts through the controversial ’VIP’ fast-track lane for associates of ministers and advisers. These six firms landed nearly half a billion pounds of public contracts – all without competition – and were uncovered in documents prised from Government in the course of our litigation: Uniserve Limited is a logistics firm controlled by Iain Liddell. Prior to the pandemic the firm had no experience in supplying PPE, yet the firm landed a staggering £300m+ in PPE contracts from the DHSC and an eye watering £572m deal to provide freight services for the supply of PPE. The company shares the same address as Cabinet Minister Julia Lopez MP and is based in her constituency. Here they are together.

Draeger Safety UK Ltd which is a subsidiary of the Germany-based Draeger AG, landed a direct award contract in July 2020 to supply FFP3 masks valued at £87m. Urathon Europe Limited, a Wiltshire based supplier of wheelchair accessories, was handed two contracts worth £74m to supply face masks. Correspondence released during our recent PPE hearing revealed the Urathon contracts were ‘escalated through VIP Channel’. First Aid For Sport Limited, SanaClis, and Global United Trading and Sourcing PTE Ltd were awarded contracts from the DHSC worth a combined total of £28.6m.

The six companies revealed here are in addition to the six other ‘VIPs’ previously revealed by Good Law Project. In April we revealed documents showing P14 Medical, Luxe Lifestyle, and Meller Designs were fast-tracked down the ‘VIP’ route alongside Pestfix and Ayanda. P14 Medical, run by a Tory donor and ex-Tory councillor, was awarded £276m in PPE contracts. Meller Designs, run by another large Tory donor, David Meller, won more than £160m of PPE contracts. Luxe Lifestyle, a tiny recently-formed company with no staffand no experience in buying and selling PPE, was awarded a contract worth £26m after being referred to the VIP lane by an MP. This followed our scoop last December that Government had handed PPE Medpro, a firm linked to an associate of a Conservative peer with mystery investors, £200m of PPE contracts via the ‘high-priority lane.’

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“Xi is following The Art of War to the letter so far.”

Thinking Out Loud (Kunstler)

While all that is cooking on one front burner, we also have the case of the US equity markets burbling away at bubblicious highs on another burner, and therefore primed for a nauseating boil-over. Would a new and lethal government scandal supply the few extra therms for that? And by scandal, I mean something more like a broad loss of legitimacy and paralysis of the “Joe Biden” government. Also, how would a market train-wreck affect the credit markets? The US dollar? Whatever is left of the on-the-ground economy? Let’s just say it sure won’t act as a tonic for any of that; more like a slug of ethylene glycol. So now we’re talking about a simultaneous government crisis and financial crisis.

Now, consider what might happen in the fall if a potent new strain, or “third wave,” of Covid-19 virus wafts across America. We’ve already seen speculation in the medical media that the residual action of mRNA “vaccines,” if exposed to yet another novel coronavirus, might tend to whack-out the immune response of those who got vaxed, killing them, as well as killing a new cohort of victims among the unvaxed, adding up to many millions of dead Americans. How would the country manage any of this along with a twin crisis of economy and government? We couldn’t even manage the pandemic when our institutions were supposedly still functioning. And now, consider what might happen if China decides this is a good time to gain control of Taiwan (and the world’s leading chip manufacturers). A savvy friend of the blog writes:

“They’ll hit Taiwan, Guam, Vietnam, South Korea, Philippines, Australia. Iran would move to secure the overland route from China to Africa. The Israeli/Saudi coalition could stop Iran but only if China didn’t help Iran. (Iran/China are far ahead of us in drone swarm warfare.) China could overrun all of it in a matter of weeks and establish a deep defensive perimeter before we could effectively respond. More importantly they’ll hit our infrastructure so hard we’ll have a hard time hitting back effectively for years. Last year pretty much exposed our weakness; now they’ll move to exploit it. They’ll not wait till 2030, as our fearless leaders are touting, otherwise we might have time to mend our ways. Sun Tzu dictates they act now. My bet is they follow his guidance. It is the one area they are most predictable. Xi is following The Art of War to the letter so far.”

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Is bitcoin truly uncensorable?

Julian Assange’s Continued Imprisonment Is A Test For Bitcoin’s Values (F.)

When Wikileaks first emerged, it represented an affinity with another emerging community: bitcoin. Julian Assange had spoken at length about the Cypherpunks, the early 90s movement that sought to enact change through code and the laws of cryptography. This included experiments with early versions of digital money. So it was a natural fit for Wikileaks to use bitcoin due to its uncensorable nature, with Assange once commenting that “bitcoin is the real Occupy Wall Street”. The threat model for Wikileaks was simple and yet devastatingly powerful: the most powerful state collective in the world was likely to go after them eventually, if not now, then sometime in the future.

This included not only the “rogue’s gallery” Assange described in a 2010 speech to the Oslo Freedom Forum (states such as North Korea, Iran and the People’s Republic of China), but also the states that controlled the financial and trade apparatus that ran the world’s financial system, one where deviation and dissent was routinely punished with sanctions and exclusion. Even as early as 2010, Assange expressed a desire to wrestle with censorship in the West, including in “common law” societies that “prided” themselves on fundamental freedoms and Enlightenment ideals.

[..] I sat down and spoke with Gabriel Shipton, Julian Assange’s half-brother, to discuss the case and what is happening with it. He has recently been active in publishing articles describing the effects Assange’s imprisonment can have broadly when it comes to the Internet and press freedoms, and specifically when it comes to bitcoin. One of the first things he commented on was Assange’s continued belief in bitcoin, his love for a tool that made it possible to do his work. The way he thought about cryptography fighting the inevitable centralization of repression made his thought process a natural complement and extension of bitcoin’s fight to remake classical economic and financial systems.

People who support bitcoin should be concerned about Assange’s imprisonment not only because it reflects the betrayal of bitcoin’s ideals in the specific case of Assange — states tying themselves into pretzel knots in order to undermine a non-violent disseminator of information — it also makes vulnerable the principles of true transaction neutrality that underpin bitcoin, creating the most pressing version of the “wrench attack”. If you cannot go after the system, you must go after the person. Dissidents around the world are using bitcoin now: some are using it to avoid censorship in Nigeria by the ruling economic elites against police brutality protests that have involved the murder of civilians by the ruling class. People in Belarus are accepting payment in order to defy the government, which has tried to crush protests with force. Hong Kong Free Press, a bastion of pro-democracy views in a Hong Kong that is seeking to crush journalists through weaponization of the financial system, accepts bitcoin.

The point isn’t trying to determine whether or not any of these individual causes is more worthy or not, or which ones align with our geopolitical views. The point is to acknowledge that all of them are only possible if they are branches stemming from the same uncensorable tree.

Read more …

 

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Jun 162021
 
 June 16, 2021  Posted by at 8:25 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , ,  68 Responses »


Wassily Kandinsky Moscow II 1916

 

Human Cells Can Write RNA Sequences Into DNA (STD)
WHO ‘Highly Compromised’, Unfit To Lead COVID-19 Investigation – Redfield (ZH)
Sen. Johnson Shares Letter From Grateful Constituent About Ivermectin (JTN)
Biden Aides Lower Expectations Ahead Of Putin Summit (NYP)
Empire Of Clowns Versus Yellow Peril (Escobar)
Bipartisan Support For A Government-backed Digital Dollar (MW)
The G7’s Reckless Commitment To Mounting Debt (Lacalle)
New Study Proves Hawking Was Right, Black Holes Only Get Bigger (RT)
AG Merrick Garland Raises As Many Questions As He Answers (Turley)
Julian Assange: The Man Who Knew Too Much (LAP)

 

 

 

 

Vaccines and infections

 

 

 

 

Gene therapy after all? Talk about scary. And if this doesn’t do it, try watching Dr. Fleming.

Human Cells Can Write RNA Sequences Into DNA (STD)

In a discovery that challenges long-held dogma in biology, researchers show that mammalian cells can convert RNA sequences back into DNA, a feat more common in viruses than eukaryotic cells. Cells contain machinery that duplicates DNA into a new set that goes into a newly formed cell. That same class of machines, called polymerases, also build RNA messages, which are like notes copied from the central DNA repository of recipes, so they can be read more efficiently into proteins. But polymerases were thought to only work in one direction DNA into DNA or RNA. This prevents RNA messages from being rewritten back into the master recipe book of genomic DNA. Now, Thomas Jefferson University researchers provide the first evidence that RNA segments can be written back into DNA, which potentially challenges the central dogma in biology and could have wide implications affecting many fields of biology.

“This work opens the door to many other studies that will help us understand the significance of having a mechanism for converting RNA messages into DNA in our own cells,” says Richard Pomerantz, PhD, associate professor of biochemistry and molecular biology at Thomas Jefferson University. “The reality that a human polymerase can do this with high efficiency, raises many questions.” For example, this finding suggests that RNA messages can be used as templates for repairing or re-writing genomic DNA. Together with first author Gurushankar Chandramouly and other collaborators, Dr. Pomerantz’s team started by investigating one very unusual polymerase, called polymerase theta. Of the 14 DNA polymerases in mammalian cells, only three do the bulk of the work of duplicating the entire genome to prepare for cell division.

The remaining 11 are mostly involved in detecting and making repairs when there’s a break or error in the DNA strands. Polymerase theta repairs DNA, but is very error-prone and makes many errors or mutations. The researchers therefore noticed that some of polymerase theta’s “bad” qualities were ones it shared with another cellular machine, albeit one more common in viruses — the reverse transcriptase. Like Pol theta, HIV reverse transcriptase acts as a DNA polymerase, but can also bind RNA and read RNA back into a DNA strand. In a series of elegant experiments, the researchers tested polymerase theta against the reverse transcriptase from HIV, which is one of the best studied of its kind. They showed that polymerase theta was capable of converting RNA messages into DNA, which it did as well as HIV reverse transcriptase, and that it actually did a better job than when duplicating DNA to DNA. Polymerase theta was more efficient and introduced fewer errors when using an RNA template to write new DNA messages, than when duplicating DNA into DNA, suggesting that this function could be its primary purpose in the cell.

Dr. Richard Fleming on mRNA

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Remind me: why did he leave?

WHO ‘Highly Compromised’, Unfit To Lead COVID-19 Investigation – Redfield (ZH)

The World Health Organization is “highly compromised” and unfit to lead an investigation into the origins of COVID-19, according to former CDC head Robert Redfield. “Clearly, they were incapable of compelling China to adhere to the treaty agreements that they have on global health, because they didn’t do that,” Redfield told Fox News on Tuesday. “Clearly, they allowed China to define the group of scientists that could come and investigate. That’s not consistent with their role.” In March, Redfield told CNN that he doesn’t believe the natural origin theory which posits that COVID-19 jumped from a bat to a human through a yet-to-be determined intermediary species.


“I think they were highly compromised,” Redfield said of the World Health Organization (WHO), which ‘investigated’ the origins of the pandemic in what was nothing more than political theatre conducted by a highly conflicted group – one of whom, Peter Daszak of NGO EcoHealth Alliance, worked with the Wuhan Institute of Virology, and was funded to the tune of millions of dollars by Anthony Fauci’s NIH. Redfield slammed Fauci during the interview, saying that while he supports the lab-leak hypothesis, “Other individuals, Tony Fauci, for example, would say that he prefers to support that it evolved from nature.” “Now, why would that be?” asked Redfield, adding that “sometimes scientists when they bite into a bone on a hypothesis, it’s hard for them to move on.” “I guess if I’m disappointed about anything about the early scientific community it’s that there seemed to be lack of openness to pursue both hypotheses,” he continued.

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“..I was finally able to connect with a Green Bay doctor that provided my wife real treatment — Ivermectin and other support prescriptions. Within an hour of taking Ivermectin, her headaches were gone..”

Sen. Johnson Shares Letter From Grateful Constituent About Ivermectin (JTN)

Sen. Ron Johnson’s name was invoked on Monday’s episode of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert during a segment in which Jon Stewart indicated that he thinks the COVID-19 pandemic emerged from a lab in Wuhan, China. “I think we owe a great debt of gratitude to science. Science has in many ways helped ease the suffering of this pandemic, which was more than likely caused by science,” Stewart said. “There’s a novel respiratory coronavirus overtaking Wuhan, China, what do we do? Oh, you know who we could ask? The Wuhan novel respiratory coronavirus lab. The disease is the same name as the lab.” The Wuhan Institute of Virology is located in Wuhan, China. During the segment Colbert invoked the name of Republican Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin: “And how long have you worked for Senator Ron Johnson?” Colbert asked.

“This is not a conspiracy,” Stewart said. Johnson tweeted on Tuesday that he enjoyed the pair’s discussion on the show and the lawmaker shared a letter from a constituent who had written to say that Ivermectin greatly helped his wife who had suffered significantly with COVID-19. “@jonstewart @StephenAtHome enjoyed your Late Show Wuhan virus discussion. Since I was mentioned, let me share this email I got from a constituent. Open minds can save lives,” Johnson tweeted. “I am writing today to thank you for your leadership in Wisconsin as it relates to COVID and alternative treatments. My wife and I watched Dr. Pierre Kory testify before the Senate Committee about ivermectin, Dec. 8, 2020, and we were utterly dumbfounded that this treatment was not readily available as treatment and prevention to the general public,” the constituent wrote.

The letter explained that the woman later became ill with COVID-19 in May and suffered significant symptoms. “Her case was quite severe; she will report that she has never experienced the severity of headaches and body aches in her lifetime as well as severe nausea and high temperatures,” the letter noted. “As the days progressed, she grew so weak that she was not able to walk without assistance.” “As her symptoms worsened, I remembered the hearing you hosted and Dr. Kory. Through your leadership on this issue, I was finally able to connect with a Green Bay doctor that provided my wife real treatment — Ivermectin and other support prescriptions. Within an hour of taking Ivermectin, her headaches were gone,” the person told Johnson.

Nasal-spray Ivermectin for C19

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Less than zero then?

Biden Aides Lower Expectations Ahead Of Putin Summit (NYP)

The White House on Tuesday lowered expectations as President Biden arrived in Geneva, Switzerland, for his summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin — with a senior Biden administration official telling reporters they are “not expecting a big set of deliverables” from the Wednesday talks. Biden’s own tone changed ahead of the meeting when he downplayed past descriptions of Putin as a “killer” who has “no soul” and told reporters Monday at the NATO summit in Belgium that Putin actually is a “worthy adversary” who is “bright” and “tough.” White House officials for weeks said Biden will seek to forge a new understanding with Putin that would allow for a more predictable US-Russia relationship. And Putin aides told reporters they still believe there may be a joint statement.

Biden and Putin are expected to arrive at the meeting site in Geneva around 1 p.m. local time Wednesday. The senior US official said meetings could last four to five hours, but that there will be “no breaking of bread.” Then Putin, followed by Biden, are expected to give solo press conferences, the official said. The lack of a joint press conference will allow Biden to avoid embarrassing moments that make him appear weak or hypocritical. Putin aides suggested he will advocate for the “human rights” of Capitol rioters during the summit. The senior US official said “nothing is off the table” for the talks, which are expected to include discussion of recent cyberattacks against Colonial Pipeline and JBS Foods by criminals suspected of living in Russia.

Biden has struggled during press interactions on his first foreign trip, which also included stops in the UK and Belgium, with lengthy pauses and saying he must stop talking lest he “get in trouble” with his press handlers. The Geneva summit is expected to kick off with an initial meeting between Biden and Putin. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and translators also will be in the room, the senior US official said. There’s scheduled to be a brief press availability when Biden and Putin first sit down — though on Monday, the White House scrapped a similar “pool spray” at the start of Biden’s meeting with Turkish autocrat Recep Tayyip Erdogan, leaving frustrated US reporters dependent on Turkey’s government for information.

[..] Lavrov said ahead of the talks that Putin is prepared to flip the script on Biden if he brings up sensitive issues, such as human rights including the case of jailed opposition leader Alexei Navalny, who last year survived poisoning attempts. “We will be ready to answer the questions that the American side will raise. This also applies to human rights,” Lavrov said. “For example, we are following with interest the persecution of those persons who are accused of the riots on January 6 this year.”

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“..the G7’s economic output barely registers as 30% of the global total.”

Empire Of Clowns Versus Yellow Peril (Escobar)

It requires major suspension of disbelief to consider the G7, the self-described democracy’s most exclusive club, as relevant to the Raging Twenties. Real life dictates that even accounting for the inbuilt structural inequality of the current world system the G7’s economic output barely registers as 30% of the global total. Cornwall was at best an embarrassing spectacle – complete with a mediocrity troupe impersonating “leaders” posing for masked elbow bump photo ops while on a private party with the 95-year-old Queen of England, everyone was maskless and merrily mingling about in an apotheosis of “shared values” and “human rights”. Quarantine on arrival, masks enforced 24/7 and social distancing of course is only for the plebs.

The G7 final communique is the proverbial ocean littered with platitudes and promises. But it does contain a few nuggets. Starting with ‘Build Back Better’ – or B3 – showing up in the title. B3 is now official code for both The Great Reset and the New Green Deal. Then there’s the Yellow Peril remixed, with the “our values” shock troops “calling on China to respect human rights and fundamental freedoms” with a special emphasis on Xinjiang and Hong Kong. The story behind it was confirmed to me by a EU diplomatic source, a realist (yes, there are some in Brussels). All hell broke loose inside the – exclusive – G7 room when the Anglo-American axis, backed by spineless Canada, tried to ramrod the EU-3 plus Japan into an explicit condemnation of China in the final communiqué over the absolute bogus concentration camp “evidence” in Xinjiang.

In contrast to politicized accusations of “crimes against humanity”, the best analysis of what’s really going on in Xinjiang has been published by the Qiao collective. Germany, France and Italy – Japan was nearly invisible – at least showed some spine. Internet was shut off to the room during the really harsh “dialogue”. Talk about realism – a true depiction of “leaders” vociferating inside a bubble. The dispute essentially pitted Biden – actually his handlers – against Macron, who insisted that the EU-3 would not be dragged into the logic of a Cold War 2.0. That was something that Merkel and Mario ‘Goldman Sachs’ Draghi could easily agree upon.

Read more …

Presented as defending your privacy …

Bipartisan Support For A Government-backed Digital Dollar (MW)

Members of a House Financial Services Committee task force largely expressed support for experiments to create a digital form of the U.S. dollar, citing the need to keep pace with China and to enable a larger swath of the U.S. population to access the digital economy, during a hearing Tuesday morning. Neha Narula, the director of MIT’s Digital Currency Project, explained to the committee the benefits of a digital dollar, describing the U.S. electronic payment system as suffering from “high fees and limited access” because it has not evolved fast enough to keep pace with the demand for online digital payments.

Narula, whose group is collaborating with the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston to study a potential Fed-backed digital dollar, added that while private cryptocurrencies may evolve to solve these problems, they also present risks including “the immaturity of the technology and its ability to provide widely available, highly secure and scalable payment transactions.” That’s why, according to Narula, that dozens of central banks across the globe, including the European Central Bank and the People’s Bank of China, are experimenting with digital forms of their own currencies. Warren Davidson of Ohio, the ranking Republican on the task force, was quick to embrace Narula and the other panelists’ support for designing a digital dollar with consumer privacy as a major priority.

“I’m very encouraged about this dialogue…and by your passion for privacy.” Davidson told the panel. “If we get this structure right, we can really move past this sad part of American history where Americans essentially surrendered their privacy in the late 1960s, early ’70s with respect to financial matters.” Davidson was referring to the the so-called third-party doctrine, which was developed by a series of Supreme Court cases in the ’60s and ’70s and says that citizens do not have a legal right to privacy with respect to information that a person willingly gives to a third party, including banks and other financial firms. A digital dollar has the potential to protect the financial privacy in a way that private companies do not, he said.

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“A minimum global corporate tax. Why not an agreement on a maximum global public spending?”

The G7’s Reckless Commitment To Mounting Debt (Lacalle)

Historically, meetings of the largest economies in the world have been essential to reach essential agreements that would incentivize prosperity and growth. This was not the case this time. The G7 meeting agreements were light on detailed economic decisions, except on the most damaging of them all. A minimum global corporate tax. Why not an agreement on a maximum global public spending?

Imposing a minimum global corporate tax of 15 percent without addressing all other taxes that governments impose before a business reaches a net profit is dangerous. Why would there be a minimum global corporate tax when subsidies are different, some countries have different or no VAT rates (value added tax), and the endless list of indirect taxes is completely different? The G7 “commit to reaching an equitable solution on the allocation of taxing rights, with market countries awarded taxing rights on at least 20 percent of profit exceeding a 10 percent margin for the largest and most profitable multinational enterprises.” This entire sentence makes no sense, opens the door to double taxation and penalizes the most competitive and profitable companies while it has no impact on the dinosaur loss-making or poor-margin conglomerates that most governments call “strategic sectors.”

The global minimum corporate tax is also a protectionist and extractive measure. The rich nations will see little negative impact from this, as they already have their governments surrounded by large multinationals that will not suffer a massive taxation blow because subsidies and tax incentives before net income are large and generous. According to PWC’s Paying Taxes 2020, profit taxes in North America already stand at 18.5 percent but, more worryingly, total tax contributions including labor and other taxes reach 40 percent of revenues. In the EU and EFTA (European Free Trade Association), profit taxes may be somewhat smaller than in North America, but total taxation remains above 39 percent of revenues.

Some politicians mention corporate technology giants as the ones that pay no taxes and use an effective tax rate where they put together loss-making companies with those making a profit thus reaching an artificially low effective tax rate. Technology giants will not pay more under this new agreement, because their taxable base will not change, their profit and loss account will remain similar and, more importantly, the deductions on large investments, which are the cause of their apparently small tax payments, will not change either.

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“..entropy or disorder can’t decrease over time..”

New Study Proves Hawking Was Right, Black Holes Only Get Bigger (RT)

Physicists have said that they have proven, by analyzing gravitational waves from space, a theory developed by Stephen Hawking in the 1970s, which states that black holes cannot decrease in surface area over time. In a study published on Monday, scientists from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Cornell University shared their findings from a research project which analyzed ripples in spacetime created by two black holes that spiraled inward and eventually merged into one bigger black hole. The ripples studied were the first gravitational waves ever identified, detected by the Advanced Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory in 2015. Splitting the gravitational wave data into time segments before and after the black holes merged, the researchers calculated the surface areas of the black holes in both periods.


The physicists found that the surface area of the new black hole was actually greater than the two initial black holes combined. The finding confirms a prediction made by famed scientist, Stephen Hawking, in the 1970s, in which he stated that black holes cannot decrease in surface area as it mirrored a rule in physics, that entropy or disorder can’t decrease over time. Hawking’s law states that the surface area of the black hole won’t increase on its own, but when things enter it, it gains mass and correspondingly its surface area increases. While incoming objects can make the black hole spin, which decreases surface area, the size increase due to the additional mass will always be greater than the size lost to spinning.

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Turley defends Assange.

AG Merrick Garland Raises As Many Questions As He Answers (Turley)

In his testimony before Congress, Garland stressed that he intends to create new protections for the media to allow “journalists to go about their work disclosing wrongdoing and error in the government. That is part of how you have faith in the government, by having that transparency.” But what is a journalist? Does it include bloggers or citizen journalists? There is general agreement that this is a case of investigative journalism. After all, Pro Publica has won six Pulitzer Prizes and bills itself as a nonprofit investigatory group committed to exposing “abuses of power and betrayals of the public trust by government, business, and other institutions, using the moral force of investigative journalism to spur reform through the sustained spotlighting of wrongdoing.”

That sounds a tad familiar. WikiLeaks was founded as a nonprofit “to bring important news and information to the public … to publish original source material alongside our news stories so readers and historians alike can see evidence of the truth.” In 2013, WikiLeaks was declared by the International Federation of Journalists to be a “new breed of media organization” that “offers important opportunities for media organizations” through the publication of such nonpublic information. If Garland is going to implement protections for the media in the use of leaked material, he will have to address the continued prosecution of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange by the DOJ. The Justice Department is still fighting to extradite Assange. It is using the same tactic that was used in the Rosen case by treating Assange not as a journalist but as a criminal co-conspirator.

DOJ insists that Assange played an active role in his correspondence with and advice to the hacker. Yet, Assange would not be the first journalist to work with a whistleblower who is prospectively or continuing to acquire nonpublic information. I have previously written about the Assange case as potentially the most important press freedom case in 300 years. (For full disclosure, I also advised the legal team of Julian Assange in England on our criminal justice system and the free press protections under the Constitution.) Both Pro Publica and WikiLeaks could claim that these disclosures serve the public interest. Pro Publica wanted to expose an unfair tax system. WikiLeaks wanted to expose how public figures were lying to the public on subjects ranging from foreign wars to campaign issues.

Both the rights of free speech and the free press require bright lines to flourish. For the free press, one bright line is to bar reverse engineering in leak investigations and the targeting of publishers or recipients of information in the media or Congress. Another is to require a higher showing (and higher authorization) for any searches of the records of journalists. That, however, will take us inevitably to the questions that the government and frankly some in the media have avoided for years. What is a journalist, and what to do with Julian Assange?

Read more …

… and shared what he knew…

Julian Assange: The Man Who Knew Too Much (LAP)

Millions viewed the “Collateral Murder Tape” online, as well as interviews with one of the soldiers who rescued the children – Ethan McCord recounts how it impacted him, and the wider PTSD forever wars inflict on our soldiers. In our fog of war reliable count of the hundreds of thousands of civilian casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan remains elusive. Those who prefer such dark reveals remain buried see Assange as someone to destroy. US military budgets remain on crescendo. The world’s top five arms dealers, and twelve of the top twenty-five, are American. Assange is bad for business. “Someone’s not going to like this” was predictable. Assange stepped into the crosshairs of fame, targeted by powerful disinformation systems.

Politicians and media pundits, some of the latter still joined at the hip with America’s military/intelligence/industrial complex, chimed in. Some called Assange a traitor – never mind he’s Australian – and high tech terrorist, even calling for his assassination. So dark was the picture painted that even sympathetic writers feel obliged to begin with “Whatever you think of Assange…” When Wikileaks revealed the DNC gamed the 2016 Democratic Party primaries, the punditry judged democratic derailments not newsworthy when the higher good was resistance to Trump. Media ran faster with narratives ripping Assange than questioning or correcting them.

Claiming Assange is outside publishing boundaries is a conceit that who, what, when, where, why and how requires formal training, or an official imprimatur. Never mind the international journalism awards Wikileaks quickly garnered, the uncovered bedrock for important stories that enabled accolades to news organizations building on Wikileaks revelations. A decade ago Daniel Ellsberg, who exposed government lies about the Vietnam War by leaking the Pentagon Papers, told me government’s objective going after him was a UK-styled Official Secrets Act that undermines First Amendment protections. Beyond criminalizing leaking classified materials, it would criminalize seeking and publishing them.

Read more …

 

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Jon Stewart

 

 

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Jun 102021
 


Henri Matisse Odalisque couchée aux magnolias 1923

 

CDC Claims Hospitalization Rising Among Unvaccinated Teens (Blaze)
The Real Efficacy of Covid-19 Vaccines (OR)
Fauci Compares Criticism Of Him To ‘Attacks On Science’ (RT)
G7 Leaders Will Call For Fresh WHO Inquiry Into Covid Origins (G.)
Covid Distancing May Have Weakened Children’s Immune System (G.)
Mongolia Reports Fresh COVID Outbreak Despite High Vaccination Rates (ZH)
J&J Must Pay $2 Billion In Landmark Talcum Baby Powder Trial (ZME)
Yet Another Media Tale Collapses (Greenwald)
EU-UK Talks On Northern Ireland Appear Close To Collapse On Eve Of G7 (G.)
Joe Biden Accuses Boris Johnson Of ‘Inflaming’ Tensions In Ireland (Sun)
Zelensky Tells Biden Ukraine Needs Clear Plan For Accession To NATO (ZH)

 

 

Actual deaths after waxxine

 

 

 

 

Neat little trick.

CDC Claims Hospitalization Rising Among Unvaccinated Teens (Blaze)

In order to justify the forced vaccination of children, the powers that be would somehow have to overturn 15 months of observations that COVID is less a threat to children than the flu and that unvaccinated children are less at risk than vaccinated adults (100 times less at risk than seniors), even if we are to believe Pfizer’s efficacy data. “CDC director reports spike in teen hospitalizations, urges parents to vaccinate kids over 12,” was the headline at the Hill on Friday, reporting on the CDC’s new study of hospitalizations. Naturally, it caught my attention because we all know that hospitalizations among all age groups have been plummeting to record lows across the country in recent weeks.

It turns out that along with its Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR), the CDC published a “study” purporting to show an increase in hospitalizations among 12- to 17-year-olds, with one-third of them being in the ICU and 5% of them being placed on ventilators. CDC Director Rochelle Walensky was ready to pounce. “I am deeply concerned by the numbers of hospitalized adolescents and saddened to see the number of adolescents who required treatment in intensive care units or mechanical ventilation,” said Walensky in a statement. Of course, the solution is the great experimental gene therapy. “Until they are fully vaccinated, adolescents should continue to wear masks and take precautions when around other [sic] who are not vaccinated to protect themselves, and their family, friends, and community,” Walensky stated.

But there’s one problem. The CDC’s own data show that hospitalizations among all groups have plummeted over the past six weeks. It turns out they picked arbitrary start and end points – an old trick they’ve used with mask studies – which coincides with a period of increased hospitalizations among all age groups, including those with high vaccination rates. The study period of the CDC’s report was from March 1, 2020, to April 24, 2021. It just so happens that April 24 was roughly the peak period for ALL age groups! Most of that mini increase (after the major winter spread) was due to the final spring spread in the northeast and upper Midwest. Based on the CDC’s headlines, one would think that childhood hospitalizations are spreading now and that they are rising relative to other age groups. In reality, they have plummeted and only rose slightly from a near-zero baseline earlier this year along with other groups.

Read more …

To make it clear once and for all.

The Real Efficacy of Covid-19 Vaccines (OR)

Absolute Risk Reduction (ARR) and Relative Risk Reduction (RRR)

Why are ARR and RRR very important? Very simply, let’s assume you have 100 people in a Treatment group and another 100 people in a Control or placebo group. Then, let’s say that 2 people get Disease X in the Control group while one person gets Disease X in the Treatment group. The Relative Risk Reduction or RRR in this example is 50% because one diseased person is 50% or half of 2 diseased people. However, the Absolute Risk Reduction (ARR) is only 1% because in the treatment group, only one fewer people out of 100 participants got Disease X. You can also work it out using these formulas:

1) In the Treatment group, 1/100 got Disease X = 1% which is the EER (Experimental Event Rate)
2) In the Control or placebo group, 2/100 got Disease X = 2% which is the CER (Control Event Rate)
3) ARR (Absolute Risk Reduction) = CER – EER = 2% – 1% = 1%

In a subtraction the % signs carry through the equation and are kept.

4) RRR (Relative Risk Reduction) = ARR divided by CER = 1% divided by 2% = 1/2

In a division, the % signs cancel each other out and are not kept, but 1/2 is the same as 50%.

Let’s say the Treatment in this example had side effects, as most treatments do. If a patient were offered this Treatment and was told that the “efficacy” (how well the treatment works) was only 1% (the ARR) which is the true efficacy, this patient would be much less likely to accept the Treatment and its side effects than if he or she were told the efficacy was 50%. Fifty percent sounds a lot more promising than 1% but it reflects only the comparison between the diseased people of each group. The ARR or 1% efficacy is much more accurate as it reflects how many more people out of 100 will be protected from Disease X as a result of the Treatment. To just say that the Treatment is 50% effective in this scenario by ignoring the ARR is to introduce outcome reporting bias.

[..] Analysis of Pfizer’s Data

1) In the vaccine group, 8/18,198 got Covid-19 infection (not death) = 0.044% This is the EER (Experimental Event Rate)
2) In the Control (placebo) group, 162/18,325 got covid-19 infection (not death ) = 0.884% This is the CER (Control Event Rate)
3) ARR (Absolute Risk Reduction) = CER – EER = 0.884% – 0.044% = 0.84% = 0.84/100 = 0.0084
4) RRR (Relative Risk Reduction) = ARR divided by CER or 0.84% divided by 0.884% = 0.95

As this formula involves division, the percentage signs cancel out. 0.95 is the same as 95% which is what the Pfizer study reports for “efficacy.” An “efficacy” of 95% gives the impression that one is 95% less likely to catch Covid-19 if one is vaccinated with Pfizer’s Covid-19 vaccine. However,

5) the ARR or Absolute Risk Reduction, which is 0.0084 or 0.84%, is actually less than 1%

As shown under the ARR and RRR heading above, the ARR (of any study) is far more accurate than the RRR, but clearly, 95% sounds much more compelling than <1%. Referring to the “efficacy” of the Pfizer vaccine as 95% is not technically incorrect, but it is very misleading as this value does not properly inform the vaccine recipient. Such misrepresentation is at the very least unethical and at most illegal in many countries which require informed consent. Unfortunately, it is easy for outcome reporting bias to escape detection since the average individual, including the average doctor, does not understand ARR and RRR and will automatically assume that “95% efficacy” means 95% less likely to get Covid-19 in the real world.

Read more …

How much longer?

Fauci Compares Criticism Of Him To ‘Attacks On Science’ (RT)

White House health advisor Anthony Fauci pushed back against growing controversy surrounding him, equating attacks on him to “attacks on science.” While Fauci remains a leading force in the US government’s battle against Covid-19, he has become an increasingly divisive figure, especially in light of a recent dramatic flip on his position on vaccinated Americans masking, as well as leaked emails seemingly showing him wavering on public positions. Asked about continuing attacks from mainly conservative critics, Fauci equated the criticism to attacking science itself. “It’s very dangerous, Chuck, because a lot of what you’re seeing as attacks on me quite frankly are attacks on science, because all of the things that I have spoken about consistently from the very beginning, have been fundamentally based on science,” he told MSNBC’s ‘Meet the Press’ hosted by Chuck Todd.

While critics have argued Fauci’s emails show he was perhaps more open to a lab leak theory behind Covid-19 privately than publicly and flip-flopped his position on masking, the infectious disease expert has denied any wrongdoing in the messages. “If you go through each and every one of them you can explain and debunk it immediately,” he said. As he has done in the past, Fauci argued that when he has seemingly changed his position on issues like masking, it’s because new data has been presented. “As a scientist, as a health official, when those data change, when you get more information, it’s essential that you change your position because you’ve got to be guided by the science and the current data,” he said. It was Fauci’s “science” defense that really stirred his critics – and Fauci believes they want him “fired” or “put in jail.”

Beyond the dangerous arrogance and pomposity of proclaiming ‘anyone who criticizes me is attacking Science’ – thus placing himself off-limits from questioning – he *admitted* he purposely issued false, anti-science, politicized claims, such as telling people not to wear masks,” journalist Glenn Greenwald tweeted.

Fauci

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Yeah, sure Fauci would like that! Then again, as long as it’s the WHO doing the inquiry, he has nothing to fear.

G7 Leaders Will Call For Fresh WHO Inquiry Into Covid Origins (G.)

Leaders at the G7 summit will call for a new, transparent investigation by the World Health Organization into the origins of the coronavirus, according to a leaked draft communique for the meeting. The call was initiated by Joe Biden’s administration and follows the US president’s decision to expand the American investigation into the origins of the pandemic, with one intelligence agency leaning towards the theory that it escaped from a Wuhan laboratory. The broad consensus among scientific experts remains that the most likely explanation is that Covid-19 jumped to humans from an animal host in a natural event. An on-the-ground investigation by WHO experts earlier this year concluded t it was “extremely unlikely” the pandemic began in a laboratory.


According to Bloomberg News, which said it had sight of the draft communique, the G7 will also commit to deliver 1bn extra doses of the Covid-19 vaccine over the next year to accelerate global protection against the disease. The move may disappoint aid agencies that want most of the world’s 8 billion people to be vaccinated, but the communique will argue that the fresh commitment will dramatically increase the number of people in the developing world offered a vaccine. Ahead of his arrival at the summit, Biden said the US would commit to buying 500m doses of the vaccine for distribution to developing countries. The communique, which is often leaked ahead of the G7 summit, is due to be finalised on Sunday following a three-day meeting in Cornwall. At the 2020 summit in France, leaders abandoned publishing a list of commitments after Donald Trump refused to sign the letter.

Biden to announce a “vaccine plan for the world”
https://twitter.com/i/status/1402688704767041539

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May have?

Covid Distancing May Have Weakened Children’s Immune System (G.)

Scientists are concerned that measures to combat Covid-19 have weakened the immune systems of young children who have not been able to build up resistance to common bugs, leaving them vulnerable when mask-wearing and social distancing eventually end. Contact with viral pathogens happens on a fairly regular basis and although it does not always lead to sickness, the exposure helps shore the immune system against the threat should the bugs be encountered again. Over the past 14 months or so, protracted restrictions on mixing and travel, alongside mask-wearing and social distancing, have not only reduced the risk of Covid but other respiratory bugs such as the flu – cases of which were basically nonexistent last winter, according to surveillance data largely encompassing England compiled by the Royal College of GPs (RCGP).

However, virologists are concerned about RSV, a virus that can cause serious lung infections requiring hospital admission, and sometimes even death, in children under the age of one – and for which there are no approved vaccines. “Flu worries me, but there is a vaccine – and so the most vulnerable will still have access to the vaccines,” said Dr Catherine Moore, consultant clinical scientist for Public Health Wales. She warned that RSV currently has no vaccine. “Whereas what Covid has done has caused a big issue in our adult ICUs, we may see conversely problems in our paediatric hospitalisations and intensive care,” she said. Pre-Covid, most children encountered most seasonal viruses before they turned 18 months old.

But the biggest influx in paediatric hospital wards each winter are babies under the age of one who have for the first time been infected with RSV – because their lungs are not well developed, their bodies struggle to fight off the infection, explained Moore. Scientists are worried that if life begins to go back to pre-Covid normality, respiratory viruses that typically circulate every winter will return alongside the coronavirus. Moore said she was particularly worried about the risk of RSV in young children. “We’ve got two cohorts now of children who’ve never met the virus, so they are susceptible, but there’s two years’ worth of them!” Before the pandemic, data suggested more than 30,000 babies and children under five were admitted to hospital every year in the UK because of RSV. Assuming “normality” resumes later this year, “we are preparing for a significant impact in paediatrics”, said Moore.

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Is it Sinopharm?

Mongolia Reports Fresh COVID Outbreak Despite High Vaccination Rates (ZH)

For weeks now, Mongolia has been touted as an unexpected success story in the international vaccination project: the poor, mostly rural country lies between northeastern China and Russia’s resource-rich east. The country, which struck deals with its neighbors to stock its vaccine coffers months ago, drew attention due to its climbing international vaccination rate. But in recent days, Mongolia’s COVID-19 rate has surged, raising questions about the efficacy of China’s vaccines. More than half of Mongolia’s population has been fully vaccinated. But despite this, the country reported 1,312 new cases of the coronavirus on Wednesday as the country’s total infections neared 70K, with almost all of those recorded since January. New daily infections have risen more than 70% in the past two weeks, according to a New York Times database.

The landlocked nation has easily secured enough doses of the vaccine from Russia and China. And as its case numbers rise, Sinopharm’s vaccine has come under scrutiny because of a lack of transparency in its late-stage trial data. The vaccine faced more questions after the island nation of the Seychelles, which relied heavily on Sinopharm to inoculate its population, also saw a spike in cases, although most people did not become seriously ill. “Inactivated vaccines like Sinovac and Sinopharm are not as effective against infection but very effective against severe disease,” said Ben Cowling, an epidemiologist and biostatistician at the University of Hong Kong School of Public Health. “Although Mongolia seems to be having a spike in infections and cases, my expectation is that there won’t be large number of hospitalizations,” he added.

Doubts about the efficacy of China’s Sinopharm jab have been spreading for months, as the vaccine was repeatedly shown to be less effective than the new mRNA jabs from Pfizer and Moderna-BioNTech. In some areas, mutant strains may be spreading fast enough to cause concern even in countries where much of the population has vaccinations effective against them: Britain is dealing with a rise in cases linked to the Delta variant, despite having more than half of its adult population fully vaccinated, largely with shots from AstraZeneca and Pfizer. Still, the wave of infections has raised questions in Mongolia over why the government relied on the Sinopharm shots instead of a vaccine proven to be more effective.

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“If even a fraction of these cases succeed, it could cost J&J in the trillions.”

J&J Must Pay $2 Billion In Landmark Talcum Baby Powder Trial (ZME)

In 2018, a court verdict ordered Johnson and Johnson to pay $2.1 billion to 22 plaintiffs who claimed the company’s talcum baby powder contained asbestos and caused ovarian cancer. It’s a hefty fine, but the stakes are even higher — as the company faces around 21,000 other trials. The story (or at least one part of it) starts in 1999, when J&J was sued by a woman who had used their baby powder. She claimed that the powder gave her cancer. The woman (and her lawyer) had a hunch that the company’s baby powder was contaminated with asbestos, but couldn’t prove it. It seemed to make sense: in nature, talc and asbestos (both naturally-occurring minerals) are often found together, so there’s a significant risk of contamination. But without hard evidence, the case was dropped. As it turns out, Johnson and Johnson had the hard evidence all along.

The company, which denied any wrongdoing, had numerous lab tests showing that their product sometimes contained small amounts of asbestos, a known carcinogen. Two decades later, they were ordered to release these lab tests during a much larger trial that involved 11,700 plaintiffs, who all claimed the same thing: Johnson and Johnson’s baby powder sometimes contains asbestos. According to a Reuters investigation, J&J knew they were in the wrong, and hid it from both the public and regulators. In light of these findings, a Missouri jury initially awarded the women $4.7 billion — but an appeal dropped two women from the suit and reduced the award to $2 billion. The judge in that case ruled that the company had “misrepresented the safety of these products for decades” and demonstrated “particularly reprehensible conduct.”

J&J tried to push things even further. The case initially combined the claims of almost two dozen plaintiffs from 12 states. The company argued to the Supreme Court that the sprawling nature of the case violated the Constitution’s due process clause. But without comment, the top US court refused to consider J&J’s objections. “Today justice is served,” said Mark Lanier, the women’s lawyer. “Twenty families now get compensated for a horrible, unnecessary disease. And J&J, the trigger for that disease, is held accountable.” Jurors in the initial case awarded each woman $25 million in compensatory damages, in addition to the company fine. For J&J, this could be only the beginning. The company faces more than 26,000 lawsuits blaming baby powder for causing cancers — which could be the biggest litigation lawsuit in history. If even a fraction of these cases succeed, it could cost J&J in the trillions.

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Lafayette Park. Who will be held accountable?

Yet Another Media Tale Collapses (Greenwald)

The independent Inspector General of the Interior Department, Mark Lee Greenblatt, issued his office’s findings after a long investigation into “the actions of the U.S. Park Police (USPP) to disperse protesters in and around Lafayette Park in Washington, DC, on June 1, 2020.” Greenblatt has been around Washington for a long time, occupying numerous key positions in the Obama administration, including investigative counsel at the Department of Justice’s Office of Inspector General and Assistant Inspector General for Investigations at Obama’s Commerce Department. The letter released by Greenblatt’s office accompanying the report makes clear how far-reaching the investigation was:

“Over the course of this review, our career investigative staff conducted extensive witness interviews, reviewed video footage from numerous vantage points, listened to radio transmissions from multiple law enforcement entities, and examined evidence including emails, text messages, telephone records, procurement documents, and other related materials. This report presents a thorough, independent examination of that evidence to assess the USPP’s decision making and operations, including a detailed timeline of relevant actions and an analysis of whether the USPP’s actions complied with governing policies.”

The IG’s conclusion could not be clearer: the media narrative was false from start to finish. Namely, he said, “the evidence did not support a finding that the [U.S. Park Police] cleared the park on June 1, 2020, so that then President Trump could enter the park.” Instead — exactly as Hemingway’s widely-mocked-by-liberal-outlets article reported — “the evidence we reviewed showed that the USPP cleared the park to allow a contractor to safely install anti-scale fencing in response to destruction of Federal property and injury to officers that occurred on May 30 and May 31.” Crucially, “the evidence established that relevant USPP officials had made those decisions and had begun implementing the operational plan several hours before they knew of a potential Presidential visit to the park, which occurred later that day.”

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Good Friday.

EU-UK Talks On Northern Ireland Appear Close To Collapse On Eve Of G7 (G.)

Talks between the EU and the UK over Northern Ireland appear on the brink of collapse as London indicated it was still considering unilateral action to keep unhindered supplies flowing from Great Britain into the region. The European commission vice-president, Maros Sefcovic, said patience was “wearing very, very thin” and described the relationship with the UK as “at a crossroads”. Amid fears that the escalating crisis over Northern Ireland would develop into a trade war, David Frost, the Brexit minister, said there had been “no breakthroughs” over the Brexit checks but no “breakdowns” after a two-hour meeting with Sefcovic in London.


They agreed to continue to try to find a solution before 30 June when a ban on chilled meats including sausages and mincemeat is due to come into force. Late on Wednesday, Boris Johnson insisted that there was no crisis. “I’m very very optimistic about this. I think that’s easily doable,” he said, referring to an issue that was at the heard of the fraught Irish border negotiations two years ago: preventing a border on the island of Ireland while protecting trade within the UK post-Brexit. Johnson’s optimism could face a challenge at the G7 meeting on Thursday, however, when Joe Biden will warn him and the EU not to “imperil” the Northern Ireland peace process.

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Playing with fire.

Joe Biden Accuses Boris Johnson Of ‘Inflaming’ Tensions In Ireland (Sun)

Joe Biden has accused Boris Johnson of “inflaming” tensions in Ireland ahead of their first meeting in Britain today. The President is expected to address post-Brexit peace with the Prime Minister to ensure that the Good Friday Agreement is protected – as Britain and the EU try to resolve the issue of checks in the Irish Sea. But tensions over Britain’s handling of Irish issues have already been voiced by Biden, reports The Times. Yael Lempert, America’s most senior diplomat in Britain, told Lord Frost, the Brexit minister, that the government was “inflaming” tensions in Ireland and Europe with its opposition to checks at ports. Lempert said she had been told to take the step of issuing London with a demarche – which is a formal diplomatic reprimand rarely exchanged between allies.


The memo said that the US “strongly urged” Britain to come to a “negotiated settlement”, even if that meant “unpopular compromises,” according to reports. In a meeting on June 3, the US diplomat warned Frost that the increasingly bitter dispute between Britain and the EU over the protocol was “commanding the attention” of Biden before his first meeting with Johnson today. Ahead of the talks, Mr Biden’s national security adviser Jake Sullivan warned that the president harbours “very deep” concerns on the issue provoked by Brexit. Mr Sullivan said the president believes the post-Brexit Northern Ireland Protocol is “critical” to ensure that the Good Friday Agreement is protected – as Britain and the EU try to resolve the issue of checks in the Irish Sea.

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Ha ha ha!

Zelensky Tells Biden Ukraine Needs Clear Plan For Accession To NATO (ZH)

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky stressed in his phone conversation with U.S. President Joe Biden on Monday that Ukraine needs “a real step-by-step plan” tied to calendar dates for its accession to NATO, the chief of the Ukrainian presidential office Andriy Yermak said according to a report on Ukraine’s official website. The time of statements and declarations of intent should be a thing of the past, Zelensky told Biden. “There can be no doubt that Ukraine is an integral part of Europe in terms of its value foundation. Now, in the new situation in Europe, we need a logistical plan for Ukraine’s accession to the Alliance in the near future. NATO is a way of maximum protection for our country,” Zelensky said.

According to a second official report, Zelensky also informed Biden about the situation in Donbas, a Ukrainian territory temporarily occupied by Russian-backed separatists, and explained the reasons and nature of the periodic escalation of the conflict. “The so-called withdrawal of Russian troops is only an imitation,” Zelensky said. There was still a high concentration of Russian troops and heavy weapons in the temporarily occupied Ukraine’s territories and near the Ukrainian border, he explained. “Ukraine’s move to NATO is also an opportunity to achieve the preconditions for establishing a stable and lasting peace in Donbas,” the second report states.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said on June 4 during an event at The Brookings Institution that the best way for Ukraine to move toward membership in NATO is to implement reforms to fight corruption and to modernize its defense and security institutions. “We are helping [Ukraine] with that as they move toward further Euro-Atlantic integration,” he added. NATO provides support to Ukraine in the form of training and capacity building, Stoltenberg said, and encouraged NATO Allies “to do more of that.”

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May 152021
 


Wassily Kandinsky Contrasting Sounds 1924

 

Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine Reprograms Innate Immune Responses
Long Covid-19 Linked To Early Aging Of Immune System (CGTN)
Pandemic To Be ‘Far More Deadly’ This Year – WHO (Y!)
Delay Child Vaccinations And Share Jabs With Covax – WHO (BBC)
India Variant Could Seriously Disrupt Lifting Of UK Lockdown (G.)
Failed Biden Nominee Neera Tanden Hired As White House Senior Adviser (F.)
The Age of Fear (Whitehead)
On the Hypocrites at Apple Who Fired Antonio Garcia-Martinez (Taibbi)
Remember It’s a Sin to Kill a Mockingbird (Turley)
Carbon Pricing Isn’t Effective at Reducing CO2 Emissions (INET)
Escalation In Palestine – Hizbullah Is Ready To Join The Fight (MoA)
Israel, the Big Lie (Chris Hedges)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Burr

 

 

This is the scary part. This is why we should not use untested substances on hundreds of millions of poorly educated people.

Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine Reprograms Innate Immune Responses (MN)

Researchers in The Netherlands and Germany have warned that Pfizer-BioNTech’s coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccine induces complex reprogramming of innate immune responses that should be considered in the development and use of mRNA-based vaccines. Jorge Domínguez-Andrés and colleagues say that while the vaccine has been shown to be up to 95% effective in preventing infection with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and subsequent COVID-19, little is known about the broad effects the vaccine may have on the innate and adaptive immune responses.

In the current study (not peer-reviewed*), the research team from Radboud University Medical Center and Erasmus MC in the Netherlands, and the Helmholtz-Centre for Infection Research (HZI), Hannover Medical School (MHH), and the University of Bonn, in Germany, confirmed the efficacy of BNT162b2 vaccination at inducing effective humoral and cellular immunity against several SARS-CoV-2 variants. However, they also showed that the vaccine altered the production of inflammatory cytokines by innate immune cells following stimulation with both specific (SARS-CoV-2) and non-specific (viral, fungal and bacterial) stimuli.

Following vaccination, innate immune cells had a reduced response to toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4), TLR7 and TLR8 – all ligands that play an important role in the immune response to viral infection. Neta and colleagues also found that cytokine responses to fungi were increased following vaccination. The mRNA BNT162b2 vaccine induces complex functional reprogramming of innate immune responses, which should be considered in the development and use of this new class of vaccines,” writes the team.

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More immune system perils.

Long Covid-19 Linked To Early Aging Of Immune System (CGTN)

New studies show the effect of severe cases of the virus on the immune system and the premature aging of T-cells suggest a possible explanation for Long COVID-19. According to one publication, three months after patients have been discharged from hospital many showed signs of “premature immunosenescence” – the age-related decline in the body’s ability to form a defence against viruses and other illnesses. Researcher Niharika Duggal of the University of Birmingham said this included the loss of “naive” immune system cells (which have yet to be used in the body’s response), with an accumulation of “memory” B and T-cells, which circulate in the body holding the information to fight against a pathogen.


These symptoms are usually seen in people over 60 years old, but they were spotted in several COVID-19 survivors. It has been previously proved that traumatic injury and chronic disease can cause premature immune system aging, but this research is the first to argue a viral infection does the same. However, the research is still at an early stage and one researcher suggested it could be cause, rather than effect. Janet Lord of the University of Birmingham, explained: “Analysis of people in the UK … who developed COVID-19, showed they were biologically 10 to 14 years older.” She said it’s possible that patients who show prematurely aged immune systems may have caught the virus due to a weaker system – rather than the virus severely damaging the body’s immune response over a long period.

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Fear campaign?

Pandemic To Be ‘Far More Deadly’ This Year – WHO (Y!)

The World Health Organization issued a grim warning on Friday that the second year of Covid-19 was set to be “far more deadly”, as Japan extended a state of emergency amid growing calls for the Olympics to be scrapped. “We’re on track for the second year of this pandemic to be far more deadly than the first,” said WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. The mood also darkened in Japan where the coronavirus state of emergency took in another three regions just 10 weeks before the Olympics, while campaigners submitted a petition with more than 350,000 signatures calling for the Games to be cancelled. With Tokyo and other areas already under emergency orders until the end of May, Hiroshima, Okayama and northern Hokkaido, which will host the Olympic marathon, will now join them.

Japanese public opinion is firmly opposed to holding the Games this summer. Swiss tennis great Roger Federer said Friday that “what the athletes need is a decision: is it happening or isn’t it?” “I would love to play in the Olympics… But if that doesn’t happen due to the situation, I would be the first to understand,” he added. The pandemic has killed at least 3,346,813 people worldwide since the virus first emerged in late 2019, according to an AFP tally of official data. India meanwhile started deploying Russia’s Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine, the first foreign-made shot to be used in the country that has been reeling from an explosion in cases and deaths.

The first token batch of Sputnik vaccines — reportedly 150,000 doses — arrived on May 1 and a second delivery is expected in the next few days. A number of leading India-based drugmakers have agreements for local production of Sputnik V with the aim to produce over 850 million doses of the jab per year. India has been adding roughly as many new Covid cases daily as the rest of the world put together.

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Forget about herd immunity through vaccines. Not going to happen. Your immune system will have to do the job.

Delay Child Vaccinations And Share Jabs With Covax – WHO (BBC)

Wealthier nations should postpone plans to give children and teenagers Covid vaccines and instead donate supplies to low-income countries, the head of the World Health Organization (WHO) says. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus on Friday urged countries to supply more vaccines to the global fair-access scheme Covax. The international distribution of Covid vaccines remains vastly uneven. Since the first vaccines were approved in December, wealthier countries have bought up most of the supply. Many are racing to vaccinate as much of their population as possible. Speaking at a virtual conference in Geneva on Friday, the WHO’s Dr Tedros said he understood why some countries wanted to vaccinate children and adolescents, but said “right now, I urge them to reconsider”.


“In low and lower-middle income countries, Covid-19 vaccine supply has not been enough to even immunise healthcare workers, and hospitals are being inundated with people that need lifesaving care urgently,” he said. Last week, US President Joe Biden laid out plans to begin coronavirus vaccine shots for 12- to 15-year-olds as soon as possible. He also said he hoped that 70% of US adults would receive at least one dose of a Covid-19 vaccine by 4 July, when American families are expected to come together to mark Independence Day. Meanwhile, Canada has authorised the use of the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine for children aged between 12 and 15. The province of Alberta, which has the highest rate of the virus in the country, has already started offering the jabs to citizens over the age of 12. In Switzerland, some places began offering Covid vaccination appointments to 16-year-olds last week.

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Still makes me cringe: “..allowing people to meet in groups of six indoors ..”

India Variant Could Seriously Disrupt Lifting Of UK Lockdown (G.)

The final stage of the lifting of coronavirus lockdown restrictions across England could face “serious disruption” due to the India variant, the prime minister has warned, as he announced plans to accelerate the vaccine programme to curb its spread. Boris Johnson said the gap between the first and second Covid jab would be cut from 12 weeks to eight for all over-50s and the clinically vulnerable, admitting: “The race between our vaccine programme and the virus may be about to become a great deal tighter.” He announced that the army would be deployed to two variant hotspots – Bolton and Blackburn with Darwen – to help with vaccinations, and urged residents in those areas to “think twice” before taking advantages of the freedoms allowed again from Monday.


Johnson said plans to ease restrictions on 17 May – allowing people to meet in groups of six indoors – would go ahead, but that the variant “could make it more difficult” for the final stage of unlocking to proceed on 21 June. He said the India variant appeared to be “more transmissible” than the dominant strain in the UK, which originated in Kent, but that it was not yet clear by how much. If it is significantly more, then, he warned, “we’re likely to face some hard choices”. “I have to level with you that this new variant could pose a serious disruption to our progress and could make it more difficult to move to step four in June,” Johnson said. Asked whether the lockdown easing would have to be paused during a press conference, he added: “The truth is, we cannot say for certain … The situation is very different from last year, we are in the throes of an incredible vaccine rollout … We just have to wait and see … We rule nothing out.”

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“Tanden’s new post will not require Senate confirmation.”

Failed Biden Nominee Neera Tanden Hired As White House Senior Adviser (F.)

Neera Tanden will have a place in the White House after all following the withdrawal of her nomination to lead the White House Office of Management and Budget, with President Joe Biden on Friday hiring her as a senior adviser on Friday, according to a White House official. Tanden, the former president of the liberal think tank Center for American Progress, will be charged with handling the White House’s response to Republican lawsuits before the Supreme Court seeking to dismantle the Affordable Care Act.


Tanden has also been tasked with reviewing the United States Digital Service, an Obama-era White House office that oversees federal websites and consults with federal agencies on technology. Tanden’s nomination was derailed when Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), a crucial vote for any Biden nominee in an evenly divided Senate, announced his opposition over her social media posts disparaging Republicans. Tanden failed to make up the votes on the Republican side, having previously slammed critical swing votes like Sens. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) in tweets. Tanden’s new post will not require Senate confirmation.

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“We allowed them to languish in schools which not only look like prisons but function like prisons..”

The Age of Fear (Whitehead)

Young people will find themselves overtaxed, burdened with excessive college debt, and struggling to find worthwhile employment in a debt-ridden economy on the brink of implosion. Their privacy will be eviscerated by the surveillance state. They will be threatened, intimidated and beaten by militarized police. They will be the subjects of a military empire constantly waging war against shadowy enemies and government agents armed to the teeth ready and able to lock down the country at a moment’s notice. As such, they will find themselves forced to march in lockstep with a government that no longer exists to serve the people but which demands that “we the people” be obedient slaves or suffer the consequences. It’s a dismal prospect, isn’t it?

Unfortunately, we failed to guard against such a future. Worse, we who should have known better neglected to maintain our freedoms or provide our young people with the tools necessary to resist oppression and survive, let alone succeed, in the impersonal jungle that is modern America. We brought them into homes fractured by divorce, distracted by mindless entertainment, and obsessed with the pursuit of materialism. We institutionalized them in daycares and afterschool programs, substituting time with teachers and childcare workers for parental involvement. We turned them into test-takers instead of thinkers and automatons instead of activists.

We allowed them to languish in schools which not only look like prisons but function like prisons, as well—where conformity is the rule and freedom is the exception. We made them easy prey for our corporate overlords, while instilling in them the values of a celebrity-obsessed, technology-driven culture devoid of any true spirituality. And we taught them to believe that the pursuit of their own personal happiness trumped all other virtues, including any empathy whatsoever for their fellow human beings. We have allowed them to be manipulated by a corporate culture that simply wants money and control. However, as Aldous Huxley warned: “The victim of mind-manipulation does not know he is a victim. To him, the walls of his prison are invisible and he believes himself to be free.”

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I know little about the situation, but I love Taibbi’s love of the man.

On the Hypocrites at Apple Who Fired Antonio Garcia-Martinez (Taibbi)

I’m biased, because I know Antonio Garcia-Martinez and something like the same thing once happened to me, but the decision by Apple to bend to a posse of internal complainers and fire him over a passage in a five-year-old book is ridiculous hypocrisy. Hypocrisy by the complainers, and defamatory cowardice by the bosses — about right for the Invasion of the Body Snatchers-style era of timorous conformity and duncecap monoculture the woke mobs at these places are trying to build as their new Jerusalem. Garcia-Martinez is a brilliant, funny, multi-talented Cuban-American whose confessional memoir Chaos Monkeys is to big tech what Michael Lewis’s Liar’s Poker was to finance.

A onetime high-level Facebook executive — he ran Facebook Ads — Antonio’s book shows the House of Zuckerberg to be a cult full of on-the-spectrum zealots who talked like justice activists while possessing the business ethics of Vlad the Impaler: Facebook is full of true believers who really, really, really are not doing it for the money, and really, really will not stop until every man, woman, and child on earth is staring into a blue-framed window with a Facebook logo. When I read Chaos Monkeys the first time I was annoyed, because this was Antonio’s third career at least — he’d also worked at Goldman, Sachs — and he tossed off a memorable bestseller like it was nothing. Nearly all autobiographies fail because the genre requires total honesty, and not only do few writers have the stomach for turning the razor on themselves, most still have one eye on future job offers or circles of friends, and so keep the bulk of their interesting thoughts sidelined — you’re usually reading a résumé, not a book.

Chaos Monkeys is not that. Garcia-Martinez is an immediately relatable narrator because in one breath he tells you exactly what he thinks of former colleagues (“A week before my last day, I had lunch with the only senior person at Goldman Sachs who was not an inveterate asshole”) and in the next explains, but does not excuse, the psychic quirks that have him chasing rings in some of the world’s most rapacious corporations. “Whenever membership in some exclusive club is up for grabs, I viciously fight to win it, even if only to reject membership when offered,” he wrote. “After all, echoing the eminent philosopher G. Marx: How good can a club be if it’s willing to have lowly me as a member?”

The irony is that if Garcia-Martinez has a failing as a writer, it’s that he’s too nice. Universally, the best writers are insane egomaniacs obsessed with staring at the great mirror that is the page. Garcia-Martinez, on the whole, would rather be sailing. I believe the reason he decided to go back to tech is that he preferred a quiet life of flying a desk to make mortgage payments to the never-ending regimen of self-salesmanship that the literary life requires (and which, again, is the easy part for most egocentric writers).

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And these people never happen to think of book burning?

Remember It’s a Sin to Kill a Mockingbird (Turley)

We have previously discussed efforts to ban classic books, including To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. Lee’s book has been banned in states from Mississippi to California. The work, which exposed the deep-seated racism in our society, has been denounced as “violent and oppressive for black students.” I have opposed such efforts. Now, Loudoun County teacher Andrea Weiskopf has publicly called for the book to be banned in my neighboring county of Loudon. The reason? The character Attitus Finch is white and therefore the book is nothing but a “white savior” tale that traumatizes black students. The remarks reflects a harmful but growing movement to ban such books in public schools. The attack on this book in particular has left many of us dismayed. As Atticus himself said “remember it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.”


Weiskopf told the board that not only is this classic work harming students but that, if any member does not accept that premise, they should not be making any decisions on book selections. ANDREA WEISKOPF: “It’s funny how they are so afraid of having their children seeing another view of sexuality, gender or religion…If you want to talk about books that are assigned, let’s read To Kill a Mockingbird together. If you aren’t able to consider the racial trauma this assigned book causes black children with its white saviorism, then you have no business discussing any books.” Her diatribe reminds me of the observation in the book that “It’s never an insult to be called what somebody thinks is a bad name. It just shows you how poor that person is, it doesn’t hurt you.”

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Use less energy, only solution.

Carbon Pricing Isn’t Effective at Reducing CO2 Emissions (INET)

How does carbon pricing affect macroeconomic balance and ultimately CO2 emission? What about electric vehicles that are now being promoted by the Biden administration? Economists’ standard advice for controlling global warming is to impose a high price on emitting CO2, which is said to discourage carbon-intensive activities and induce carbon-saving technical change. In a recent review of the New Deal, William Janeway (2021) draws a distinction between efficient and effective policies. He comes close to economist-speak by describing efficiency as a low-cost means for moving toward a desired goal. Whether an efficient intervention will be effective in reaching the goal is another question altogether. In the short- to medium-run, raising carbon prices within a politically acceptable range may be efficient at inducing macroeconomically small changes in the structure of the economy and level of emission.

But the move will not be effective, because the changes will remain small for at least three reasons. Energy constitutes a relatively small proportion of economic activity. It is crucial for the functioning of the macro system, but usually is not the tail that wags the dog. Carbon pricing brings in the “little triangles” of economic welfare analysis applied by Arnold Harberger (1954, 1971), which are not significant in terms of GDP (James Tobin, 1977). The reason, as illustrated below, is that the percentage change in, say, gasoline demand in response to a higher tax is the product of a negative price elasticity of demand which is a fraction of the percentage change in price, typically less than 100%. The product of two fractions is smaller than both, meaning that the demand response is weak. Even if the magnitude of the long-run elasticity is bigger than the short-run value (say -0.4 < -0.2 or 0.4 > 0.2), the conclusion remains.

Finally, following Harberger and lurching into jargon, economists usually assume that the proceeds of a tax are passed in “lump sum” fashion back to consumers. This transfer produces an “income effect” stimulating demand for all goods including gasoline. The increase can partially offset the price-induced demand reduction due to “substitution” of other goods for lower purchases of gasoline. Substitution effects almost always dominate income effects, so that most of the transferred income gets spent on non-energy goods and services. Total gasoline consumption still declines.

Somewhat similar reasoning applies to electric vehicles (EVs). They have a great advantage in delivering around 70% of the energy they use for moving the vehicle as opposed to 25% for internal combustion engine (ICE) counterparts. But the electricity has to come from some source. As of now 60% of the energy going toward electricity generation in the USA comes from fossil fuels. Unless that share is substantially reduced, EVs will not shift energy accounting by very much. They are efficient in reducing end-use of petroleum in the transport sector, but not effective in controlling CO2. Details appear below.

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Moon of Alabama with an original take.

Escalation In Palestine – Hizbullah Is Ready To Join The Fight (MoA)

The current war the occupiers of Palestine wage on the indigenous population has some unusual features. While the conflict was, without doubt, started by the colonial occupiers the course of the recent escalation seems to be managed by the resistance side. It may well be part of a larger plan. The Israeli army had for some time planned a large scale 30-days long maneuver to rehearse an attack on Hezbullah in Lebanon. Last week Hizbullah reacted to that: “The Lebanon-based Hezbollah terror organization has announced it is on high alert following the IDF’s launching of its largest-ever military exercise. The IDF launched on Sunday its “Chariots of Fire” month-long exercise simulating war on several fronts, and primarily against Hezbollah in the north, including the massive firing of missiles and rockets from all arenas on the home front. This is the largest and most comprehensive IDF maneuver in its history…”

[..] With unrest in Jerusalem, pogroms in Israeli cities, a potential third intifada in the occupied West Bank and a ground invasion of Gaza the Israeli army will be very busy. If it comes to that during the next few days the time could be right for Hizbullah, already on full alarm, to step in and to attack the occupation on the grounds that it is holding. Nasrallah’s speech last week can be understood as an announcement of such a step: “My last message will be for the Israelis themselves. I tell them this: you know well, in your heart of hearts, whether it is based on your religious texts or doctrines, on your books or your prophecies, and also based on what some of your leaders and experts say, and also some of your religious authorities, you know (very well) that this entity (Israel) has no future, that it is on the verge of extinction and that it has little time left to live, very little time. Therefore, in this battle you are wasting your energy, and your young people are wasting their youth and their blood, in vain and to no avail.”

We believe in this near future (where Israel won’t exist anymore), we believe in it very firmly, and this faith is not based only on religious and ideological bases, but is based (above all) on the data, on the events which occur, especially on those of the last decades, the last years and on what will happen (soon) in this region.”

It is possible that Netanyahoo had planned the original escalation in Jerusalem to stay in office: After four elections Israel still has no new government. Prime Minister Netanyahoo is on trial for corruption. A larger war that can be spun into a victory could help him to avoid a judgment and gain votes for the likely soon coming next election. It that was his plan he has achieved a first step towards it: “Yamina party leader Naftali Bennett has taken “off the table” the option of forming a government without Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud, due to the ongoing military conflict with Gaza terrorists, a political source says. Bennett has renewed his negotiations with Likud due to the emergency situation, and teams from both parties met today, the source says on condition of anonymity.

But it is not Netanyahoo who can decide when the missiles from Gaza will stop flying. It is not Netanyahoo who can control the Palestinian youth. The escalation dominance is not in his hands but in the hands of the resistance. It is the resistance that decides when the conflict ends.

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Hedges has been there, done that.

Israel, the Big Lie (Chris Hedges)

I spent seven years in the Middle East as a correspondent, four of them as The New York Times Middle East Bureau Chief. I am an Arabic speaker. I lived for weeks at a time in Gaza, the world’s largest open-air prison where over two million Palestinians exist on the edge of starvation, struggle to find clean water and endure constant Israeli terror. I have been in Gaza when it was pounded with Israeli artillery and air strikes. I have watched mothers and fathers, wailing in grief, cradling the bloodied bodies of their sons and daughters. I know the crimes of the occupation—the food shortages caused by the Israeli blockade, the stifling overcrowding, the contaminated water, the lack of health services, the near constant electrical outages due to the Israeli targeting of power plants, the crippling poverty, the endemic unemployment, the fear and the despair. I have witnessed the carnage.

I also have listened from Gaza to the lies emanating from Jerusalem and Washington. Israel’s indiscriminate use of modern, industrial weapons to kill thousands of innocents, wound thousands more and make tens of thousands of families homeless is not a war: It is state-sponsored terror. And, while I oppose the indiscriminate firing of rockets by Palestinians into Israel, as I oppose suicide bombings, seeing them also as war crimes, I am acutely aware of a huge disparity between the industrial violence carried out by Israel against innocent Palestinians and the minimal acts of violence capable of being waged by groups such as Hamas. The false equivalency between Israeli and Palestinian violence was echoed during the war I covered in Bosnia.

Those of us in the besieged city of Sarajevo were pounded daily with hundreds of heavy shells and rockets from the surrounding Serbs. We were targeted by sniper fire. The city suffered a few dozen dead and wounded each day. The government forces inside the city fired back with light mortars and small arms fire. Supporters of the Serbs seized on any casualties caused by Bosnian government forces to play the same dirty game, although well over 90 percent of the killings in Bosnia were the fault of the Serbs, as is also true regarding Israel. The second and perhaps most important parallel is that the Serbs, like the Israelis, were the principal violators of international law. Israel is in breach of more than 30 U.N. Security Council resolutions. It is in breach of Article 33 of the Fourth Geneva Convention that defines collective punishment of a civilian population as a war crime.

It is in violation of Article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention for settling over half a million Jewish Israelis on occupied Palestinian land and for the ethnic cleansing of at least 750,000 Palestinians when the Israeli state was founded and another 300,000 after Gaza, East Jerusalem and the West Bank were occupied following the 1967 war. Its annexation of East Jerusalem and the Syrian Golan Heights violates international law, as does its building of a security barrier in the West Bank that annexes Palestinian land into Israel. It is in violation of U.N. General Assembly Resolution 194 that states that Palestinian “refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbors should be permitted to do so at the earliest practicable date.” This is the truth. Any other starting point for the discussion of what is taking place between Israel and the Palestinians is a lie.

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May 142021
 


Pablo Picasso Woman Sitting Near a Window (Marie-Therese) 1932 (sold yesterday for $103.4 million)

 

Predictions On Outcome Of Mass Vaccination During A Pandemic (VanDenBossche)
Don’t Mention Ivermectin; It’ll Upset The Vaccine Rollout (BizN)
CDC Says Vaccinated People Can Largely Stop Wearing Masks (F.)
8 Vaccinated Yanks Coaches, Staff Have Virus (AP)
More Than A Quarter Of EU Adults Reluctant To Get Covid Vaccine (RT)
Scientists Slam WHO For Dismissing Wuhan Lab Leak Theory (DM)
New Study Finds Delaying The Second Dose Of Vaccine Can Save Lives (Hill)
An Insider’s View Of The Tragedy Of The US Deep State (Escobar)
Debt Collectors: We Should Be Able to Break Your Legs (Sirota)
Why Has Netanyahu Allowed For A Palestinian Uprising? (RT)

 

 

There’s no such rule. If only because if there were, it would be illegal.

 

 

VanDenBossche will not be silenced.

Predictions On Outcome Of Mass Vaccination During A Pandemic (VanDenBossche)

Current single (S) and full (F) vaccination rates are shown next to the country name. In all cases, full vaccine resistance is expected to occur within the next few months, or even weeks. A number of smaller islands (e.g., Seychelles, Maldives, Bahrain) have managed high vaccine coverage rates within a relatively short period of time. Some of them had relaxed their infection prevention measures as their vaccine coverage rates were growing (e.g., Seychelles). This already explains why these islands have now begun to face a substantial wave of morbidity and mortality (more infectious variants), even in subjects who’ve been fully vaccinated (see fig. 3a, 3b).

Overall conclusion: Covid-19 vaccination campaigns that are rolled out in the heat of a pandemic will inevitably breed variants that are more infectious and ultimately become resistant to vaccines. The smaller the population and the faster mass vaccination campaigns are rolled out, the faster infection, morbidity and mortality rates will rise. Based on how the pandemic is currently evolving in a number of smaller countries/ islands (e.g., Seychelles, Maldives, Bahrain), it is reasonable to assume that over the next coming months, or weeks, several other countries are going to show a dramatic increase in these rates as well.

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“Only 19 deaths are known and side-affects are generally mild and short. As a comparison, approximately 450 US citizens die from paracetamol every year.”

Don’t Mention Ivermectin; It’ll Upset The Vaccine Rollout (BizN)

What if there was a cheap drug, so old its patent had expired, so safe that it’s on the WHO’s lists of Essential and Children’s Medicines, and used in mass drug administration rollouts? What if it can be taken at home with the first signs COVID symptoms, given to those in close contact, and significantly reduce COVID disease progression and cases, and far fewer few people would need hospitalisation? The international vaccine rollout under Emergency Use Authorisation (EUA) would legally have to be halted. For an EUA to be legal, “there must be no adequate, approved and available alternative to the candidate product for diagnosing, preventing or treating the disease or condition.” The vaccines would only become legal once they passed level 4 trials and that certainly won’t happen in 2021.

This would present a major headache for the big public health agencies led by the WHO. The vaccine rollout, outside of trials, would become illegal. The vaccine manufactures, having spent hundreds of million dollars developing and testing vaccines during a pandemic, would not see the $100bn they were expecting in 2021. In a pandemic, and for the next one, we need big pharma to react quickly, and the best way to that, is to reward them financially. Allowing any existing drug, at this time, well into stage 3 trials, to challenge the legality of the EUA of vaccines, is not going to happen easily. On the 31st of March 2021, the WHO recommended against the use of Ivermectin for COVID treatment, citing safety and lack of large RCT proof.

[..] In January this year, the several months long, Ivermectin research, meta-analysis of Randomised Control Trials (RCT), commissioned by WHO was released. The paper showed that Ivermectin reduces death by 74% and is 85% effective as prophylaxis. [..] Ivermectin has been used in humans for 35 years and over 4 billion doses have been administered. Merck, the original patent holder, donated 3.7 billion doses to developing countries. 2015 the two individuals who developed Ivermectin were awarded a Nobel Prize for medicine. While known primarily as an anti-parasitic, Ivermectin has powerful anti-viral and anti-inflammatory properties. Its safety is documented at doses twenty times the normal. Only 19 deaths are known and side-affects are generally mild and short. As a comparison, approximately 450 US citizens die from paracetamol every year.

Merck’s patent on Ivermectin expired in 1996 and they produce less than 5% of global supply. In 2020 they were asked to assist in Nigerian and Japanese trials but declined both. In 2021 Merck released a statement claiming that Ivermectin was not an effective treatment against Covid-19 and bizarrely claimed, “A concerning lack of safety data in the majority of studies” of the a drug they donated to be distributed in mass rollouts, by primary care workers, in mass campaigns, to millions in developing countries. The media reported the Merck statement as a blinding truth without looking at the conflict of interests when days later, Merck received $356m from the US government to develop an investigational therapeutic. The WHO even quoted Merck, as evidence, that it didn’t work, in their recommendation against the use of Ivermectin. It’s a dangerous world when corporate marketing determines public health policy. Global vaccine rollout, to everyone, is the policy.

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Having a robust immune system will save you from the virus, but not from the new religion.

CDC Says Vaccinated People Can Largely Stop Wearing Masks (F.)

Fully vaccinated Americans no longer need to wear masks indoors or socially distance in most cases, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Thursday, a major loosening of Covid-19 advice as more Americans get vaccinated. The CDC’s new guidelines say it’s safe for vaccinated people to go maskless in most indoor and outdoor settings, and they can participate in large activities without physical distancing, CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said at a White House briefing. Americans should still wear masks in healthcare facilities and other sensitive locations, and immunocompromised people should seek medical advice, Walensky said. Walensky cited a range of studies showing the vaccines are highly effective at stopping the spread of coronavirus and staving off serious illness, including most new variants.

Mask mandates are normally the domain of state and city governments, but the CDC releases advice for public officials and individuals, and the federal government mandates masks inside federal buildings and on interstate modes of transit. “If you are fully vaccinated, you can start doing the things that you had stopped doing because of the pandemic,” Walensky said. “We have all longed for this moment.” 35.4%. That’s the share of Americans who are fully vaccinated, meaning they’ve received two doses of Pfizer or Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccine or one dose of Johnson & Johnson’s single-shot vaccine. Some 46.4% have received at least one vaccine shot.

The CDC has gradually lifted its coronavirus guidelines in recent weeks. The agency now says it’s safe for fully vaccinated people to gather in small groups without masks, go maskless outdoors unless they’re in crowded areas, or travel domestically. But some health experts have urged the CDC to move faster, arguing vaccinated people face very little risk of contracting Covid-19 and looser rules would encourage hesitant people to take the vaccine. Many states have already loosened or dropped their mask mandates. Texas and Mississippi struck down virtually all of their coronavirus restrictions in March, some states like Massachusetts and New York have lifted outdoor mask-wearing rules but left indoor restrictions in place, and stricter places like California have promised to drop masking rules in the coming months.

Dr. Anthony Fauci — the federal government’s top infectious disease expert — has started encouraging vaccinated Americans to get used to going maskless outdoors, amid criticism President Joe Biden’s administration has been overly cautious in loosening coronavirus guidelines. “Put aside your mask. You don’t have to wear it,” Fauci told CBS News Thursday.

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Calling VanDenBossche. “All are fully vaccinated.”

8 Vaccinated Yanks Coaches, Staff Have Virus (AP)

New York Yankees shortstop Gleyber Torres was kept out of Wednesday night’s starting lineup at Tampa Bay as a precaution as the number of confirmed positive COVID-19 tests among the team’s coaching and support staff reached seven. Manager Aaron Boone said MLB’s Joint COVID-19 Health and Safety Committee is waiting and reviewing a number of test results. The members of New York’s traveling party have been tested at least three times each since Tuesday. “I know everybody is going to read into that but hopefully it’s nothing, it’s more just getting all the information,” Boone said of Torres. Boone said the Yankees expect to receive an update about Torres on Wednesday night. He added that Torres tested positive for COVID-19 in December and has been vaccinated.


It was also confirmed by Boone that pitching coach Matt Blake has joined third base Phil Nevin and first base coach Reggie Willits as members of the coaching staff testing positive for the virus. A couple additional staff members had positive tests confirmed on Wednesday, bringing the total there to four. Six of the seven are asymptomatic. All are fully vaccinated. “We’re seeing the vaccinations also kind of blunt the effects of the virus,” Boone said. “We’re also learning as we go and getting informed as what we need to do exactly and just try to do as best we can to be able to make quick adjustments on the fly. Just doing the best we can with it all.” The Yankees on April 30 were able to relax MLB protocols after reaching an 85 percent vaccination rate among players and staff such as managers, coaches and athletic trainers.

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They’ll be shamed and restricted.

More Than A Quarter Of EU Adults Reluctant To Get Covid Vaccine (RT)

Vaccine hesitancy rates in the EU are raising alarms, after a survey found that 27% of adults across the bloc said they’d be unlikely to accept a Covid-19 jab, amid a “failure” to persuade people of its efficacy and safety. A Eurofound survey investigating vaccine take-up across EU member states flagged concerns about the success of messaging from health officials on Covid jabs, warning that the failure to fully convince the adult population to be inoculated could put the fight against the pandemic at risk. Some 27% of those surveyed across Europe, including half of French respondents and 67% of those in Bulgaria, said they would be very unlikely or rather unlikely to get a Covid vaccine.


There were big variations between states though, with people surveyed in Eastern European nations more likely to be more cautious about taking the jab. Hesitancy figures were above 30% in several states, including Croatia, Latvia, Poland and Slovenia. “Unfortunately, these findings reflect a failure to deliver persuasive and clear communication regarding the efficacy and safety of vaccines,” Daphne Ahrendt, senior research manager at Eurofound, said. Looking at the possible root causes of vaccine hesitancy, researchers found a link between people who said they were less likely to get a Covid jab and social media as a main source of information. Among those surveyed who said they primarily relied on social media

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‘The information, data, and samples for the study’s first phase were collected and summarized by the Chinese half of the team; the rest of the team built on this analysis..’

Scientists Slam WHO For Dismissing Wuhan Lab Leak Theory (DM)

Researchers at a number of top universities have penned a letter saying theories that COVID-19 escaped from a Wuhan lab ‘remain viable’ and called for further studies to investigate the origins of the virus. Stanford University microbiologist David Relman and the University of Washington virologist Jesse Bloom organized the letter published in the journal Science and signed by 18 prominent biologists from universities like Harvard and Cambridge. Claims that the virus escaped from the Wuhan Institute of Virology have been laughed off as conspiracy theories – but the researchers suggest in the letter that the ‘hypotheses’ cannot be ruled out until there is more evidence. Relman told The Times of London that ‘many who signed this letter feel the same way’ that researchers ‘simply just don’t have enough information.’

‘Anyone who asserts a strong opinion one way or another can’t really be basing it on a whole lot of good data,’ he said. He added: ‘Let’s try to refrain from offering speculation where we really don’t have a basis for it, especially when we’re trying to maintain our credibility has purveyors of good science.’ The letter reads that ‘yet more investigation is still needed to determine the origin of the pandemic.’ ‘Theories of accidental release from a lab and zoonotic spillover both remain viable. Knowing how COVID-19 emerged is critical for informing global strategies to mitigate the risk of future outbreaks,’ the letter reads. The letter blasts the World Health Organization and China for their recent joint study investigating the origins of COVID-19, saying that the theory it came from the lab was ‘not given balanced consideration’ to the theory it came from natural spillover.

The report concluded that it was ‘likely to very likely’ that a bat had infected an intermediate host but said it was ‘extremely unlikely’ it was the result of a laboratory accident. ‘The information, data, and samples for the study’s first phase were collected and summarized by the Chinese half of the team; the rest of the team built on this analysis,’ the letter reads, suggesting China had a conflict of interest. The letter noted that ‘only 4 of the 313 pages of the report and its annexes addressed the possibility of a laboratory accident.’ ‘A proper investigation should be transparent, objective, data-driven, inclusive of broad expertise, subject to independent oversight, and responsibly managed to minimize the impact of conflicts of interest,’ the letter reads.

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Now they’re just f*king with you.

“Results displayed up to 20 percent less mortality, namely for hypothetical countries ..”

New Study Finds Delaying The Second Dose Of Vaccine Can Save Lives (Hill)

Delaying the second dosage of the COVID-19 vaccine could result in a lower COVID-19 mortality rate, according to a new study published in the British Medical Journal. In the United States, the vaccination rate has been consistently increasing under President Biden’s ambitious inoculation goals. But other countries are experiencing more delay in vaccinating their residents. Public health experts have advised that Pfizer vaccines be given three weeks apart and Moderna vaccines be given four weeks apart for optimal efficacy. Now, new research suggests that waiting on the second dose may pose some public health benefits. A team of international scientists and researchers constructed a simulation examining the health outcomes associated with the standard interval between COVID-19 vaccinations versus those associated with a delayed second shot.

They found that the cumulative mortality rate tended to be lower in the simulation where participants delayed their second shot beyond the recommended 21 to 28 days after the first shot. Results displayed up to 20 percent less mortality, namely for hypothetical countries that have a lower vaccination rate at 0.1 or 0.3 percent. The report authors made a point to exclude people aged 65 years and older who tend to be more vulnerable to severe COVID-19 infections. “A delayed second dose vaccination strategy, at least for people aged under 65, could result in reduced cumulative mortality under certain conditions,” the authors concluded. Notably, researchers found that the declining mortality rate was primarily associated with situations with a low vaccination rate and when the vaccine used in the simulation is above 70 percent effective at preventing infections.

“These results suggest that higher first dose efficacy estimates favor delaying the second dose and that for a first dose efficacy of 70% or below, no meaningful difference is apparent between the standard and delayed second dose strategy,” the report reads. This could have beneficial implications for countries struggling to secure enough vaccine doses to vaccinate their population and that, in certain situations, delaying a second dose could help lower deaths due to COVID-19.

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“The first point that we make is that it was not Kissinger who created policy for Nixon, but the Deep State. Kissinger was just a messenger boy. ”

An Insider’s View Of The Tragedy Of The US Deep State (Escobar)

Henry Kissinger, 97, Henry the K. for those he keeps close, is either a Delphic oracle-style strategic thinker or a certified war criminal for those kept not so close… He now seems to have been taking time off his usual Divide and Rule stock in trade – advising the combo behind POTUS, a.k.a. Crash Test Dummy – to emit some realpolitik pearls of wisdom. At a recent forum in Arizona, referring to the festering, larger than life Sino-American clash, Henry the K. said, “It’s the biggest problem for America; it’s the biggest problem for the world. Because if we can’t solve that, then the risk is that all over the world a kind of cold war will develop between China and the United States.” In realpolitik terms, this “kind of Cold War” is already on; across the Beltway, China is unanimously regarded as the premier U.S. national security threat.

Kissinger added U.S. policy toward China must be a mix of stressing U.S. “principles” to demand China’s respect and dialogue to find areas of cooperation: “I’m not saying that diplomacy will always lead to beneficial results…This is the complex task we have… Nobody has succeeded in doing it completely.” Henry the K. actually must have lost the – diplomatic – plot. What Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov are now involved in, full time, is to demonstrate – mostly to the Global South – how the American-enforced “rules-based international order” has absolutely nothing to do with international law and the respect of national sovereignty. At first I had archived these Henry the K. platitudes out of sight. But then someone who used to hold a stellar position at the top of the U.S. Deep State showed he had been paying close attention.

This personality – let’s call him Mr. S. – has been one of my invaluable, trustworthy sources since the early 2000s. Mutual confidence was always key. I asked him if I could publish selected passages of his analysis, not naming names. Consent was given – ruefully. So fasten your seat belts. Mr. S., in a quite intriguing fashion, seems to be expressing the collective views of a number of extremely qualified people. Right from the start, he points out how Henry the K.’s observations explain today’s Russia-China-Iran triangle. “The first point that we make is that it was not Kissinger who created policy for Nixon, but the Deep State. Kissinger was just a messenger boy. In the 1972 situation the Deep State wanted to get out of Vietnam, which policy was put in place as containment of communist China and Russia. We were there based on the domino theory.”

“The Deep State wanted to achieve a number of objectives in approaching Chairman Mao, who was antagonized by Russia. It wanted to ally in 1972 with China against Russia. That made Vietnam meaningless, for China would become the containing party of Russia and Vietnam no longer meant anything. We wanted to balance China against Russia. Now, China was not a major power in 1972 but it could drain Russia, forcing it to place 400,000 troops on their border. And our Deep State policy worked. We in the Deep State had thought it through, and not Kissinger. 400,000 troops on the Chinese border was a drain on their budget, as later Afghanistan became with over 100,000 troops, and the Warsaw Pact had another 600,000 troops.”

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Lobby.

Debt Collectors: We Should Be Able to Break Your Legs (Sirota)

Two months ago, debt collectors won a victory when congressional lawmakers allowed stimulus checks to be garnished by creditors and government agencies. Now, as the credit industry hits a jackpot during the pandemic, the leading lobby group for debt collectors has more than tripled the amount of cash it funnels to lawmakers as it campaigns to block upcoming Democratic legislation to protect millions of Americans from the repo man. At issue is a package of bills designed to restrict the $13 billion debt collection industry, as new Federal Reserve and Census Bureau reports show consumer and medical debt has skyrocketed during the pandemic. One measure would prohibit the collection of medical debt for the first two years after a medical payment is due.

Another would discharge student debt in the event of a debtor’s death. Other provisions aim to block lenders from forcing debtors to sign away their legal rights; outlaw threats of demotion that debt collectors reportedly aim at members of the military; and subject government-contracted debt collectors to the same restrictions as consumer debt collectors. “In the midst of the pandemic crisis, predatory debt collectors have made record profits while continuing with their abusive, harassing tactics while consumers struggle to make ends meet through no fault of their own,” said Democratic representative Maxine Waters, who led the successful effort to pass the bill through the House Financial Services Committee last month over the objections of GOP lawmakers.

As the legislation now moves to the House floor Thursday, ACA International — which bills itself as “the largest trade group for the debt collection industry” — has been running what it calls a “grassroots campaign” urging its 2,500 members to pressure lawmakers to vote down the legislation. “The accounts receivable management industry plays a key role in the process of attempting to recover outstanding payments, and as such, collection agencies are an extension of every community’s businesses,” says a form letter that ACA has asked debt collectors to send to lawmakers. “If creditors cannot collect, they will be forced to not lend, and consumers — who much of this legislation is supposedly aimed at protecting — will end up being harmed the most, particularly those with fewer options for credit.”

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Trying to stay out of jail.

Why Has Netanyahu Allowed For A Palestinian Uprising? (RT)

Lehava, the extremist settler group that organised the racist demonstration weeks ago, is headed by a man named Bentzi Gopstein. Although the group would previously have been allowed no legitimacy by the Israeli government, Gopstein’s lawyer, Itamar Ben-Gvir, is a member of the Knesset and a close ally of Israeli PM Netanyahu. Ben-Gvir heads the Jewish Power party (Otzma Yehudit), which falls under the Religious Zionism slate led by Bezalel Smotrich. It’s no surprise, then, that Lehava feels they have been accorded a sense of legitimacy, when they witness Israeli members of the Knesset and allies of the prime minister standing beside them in Jerusalem. Israel just had its fourth round of elections since 2019, in which Netanyahu’s Likud won the most seats of any party.

But Likud’s, combined with the seats of their natural allies, still fell short of the 61-seat threshold required to form a government. The Religious Zionism slate forms part of Netanyahu’s backbone when it comes to his political survival, so any decision by the Israeli premier to abandon them could hurt him politically. After Netanyahu failed to form a coalition government, the responsibility to do so was handed over to the opposition figure Yair Lapid, who was invited to form a coalition of anti-Netanyahu parties. At this point, Netanyahu is fighting not only to stay in government, but also to avoid potentially going to prison on charges of corruption. Conversely, if Yesh Atid party leader Lapid cannot form a coalition government either, Israel will then head to a fifth round of elections, which would keep Netanyahu in power and give him more time to prepare for a potential future victory at the polls.

Following the Israeli settler “death to Arabs” march, the leader of the Palestinian political party Hamas, Ismail Haniyeh, warned that the next march, planned for Israel’s Jerusalem Day would not be tolerated and there would be a response. In fact, a barrage of about 30 rockets was fired the night following the original march, and claimed by the armed wing of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, in response to attacks on hundreds of Palestinians in Jerusalem. The issue of Israeli courts processing the orders for evicting Palestinians from their homes in the East Jerusalem neighbourhood of Sheikh Jarrah, which threatens to render 550 people homeless, has also been another point of contention.

Instead of stepping in to de-escalate tensions, in accordance with calls from Israel’s close ally, the United States, Netanyahu has allowed his allies from the Religious Zionism slate to provoke Palestinians further. When last Friday’s attack on worshippers at the Al-Aqsa mosque compound occurred, the ‘Joint Operations Room’ of Palestinian armed factions, based in Gaza, vowed a response to Israel if it did not stop the settler march planned for Monday. Yet Netanyahu still stood idly by and refused to act, ignoring the threats, and, on Monday, allowed for another escalation, which led to the injuring of hundreds in Jerusalem.

Richard Medhurst
https://twitter.com/i/status/1392873946232639488

Read more …

 

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As Elon Musk dishes bitcoin and promotes dogecoin, here’s what the latter’s founder thinks of him:

 

 

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May 132021
 


Daniel Garber The quarry 1917

 

Public Health and the Triumph of Irrationality (CP)
Your Immune System Evolves to Fight Coronavirus Variants (SciAm)
Covid Pandemic Was Preventable, Says WHO-commissioned Report (G.)
Covid Surges In 4 Of 5 Most Vaccinated Countries (F.)
Ivermectin Tablets To Be Distributed Among Uttarakhand Residents (OneIndia)
Could Indian Variant Jeopardise UK Unlocking Plan? (DM)
Merriam-Webster: ‘Anti-Vaxxer’ Now Includes Those Who Oppose Forced Jabs (RT)
124 Retired Generals And Admirals Question Biden’s Mental Health (Hill)
Tesla Will Stop Accepting Bitcoin As Payment Due To Fossil Fuel Use (JTN)
Man Who Alleges He Created Bitcoin Takes £4bn Claim To London High Court (R.)
France Aims To Shut British Firms Out Of EU Financial System (ZH)

 

 

I put this chart here to start a discussion on Covid and different blood types. Shoot.

 

 

 

Does anyone still realize how short we’ve become on science and rationality in the Covid response? And how we claim the exact opposite?

Public Health and the Triumph of Irrationality (CP)

It’s been inspiring to see how the nation has pulled together to stop the spread of COVID-19. It’s also been puzzling, however, in that it’s so out of character with the attitude Americans have otherwise taken to issues of public health. According to a recent article in the New York Times, cancer killed almost twice as many Americans in 2020 as COVID, and heart disease killed more than twice as many. That is, heart disease was the leading cause of death in the U.S. even during the most lethal period of the COVID epidemic, and cancer was second. Twenty-one percent of the deaths in the U.S. in 2020 were from heart disease and 18% from cancer, as opposed to only 10% from COVID. My point here is not that we should have been less concerned about COVID than we were. My point is that if we care so much about public health, why are we doing next to nothing to reduce the death toll of these two far more lethal threats?

Take heart disease. Not only do we know what causes it and how to prevent it, prevention is far easier than is the prevention of COVID. The causes of heart disease are things such as obesity, poor diet, smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, stress, and lack of exercise. It would be relatively easy to tackle these problems. We could outlaw the sales of jumbo-sized sugary drinks, limit legal amounts of sugar and fats in processed foods, outlaw smoking, establish legal limits on the sales on alcohol, and mandate short supervised exercise periods in workplaces.

Americans are generally hesitant to impose what many have traditionally taken to be excessive legislative measures to protect public health. There was enormous support, however, for the legally-mandated extended lockdown measures and mask requirements to protect people from COVID, so why is there so little support for more moderate legislative measures to protect Americans from these greater threats to their health? The attempted ban on jumbo-sized sugary drinks was so short-lived that most people no longer even remember it. We’ve done a great deal to limit smoking in the U.S., but even with those measures it continues to be a huge threat to public health. If we can shut down businesses to protect people from COVID, why can’t we shut down the tobacco industry to protect people from the ravages of smoking (which affects not only smokers, but everyone in close proximity to them, not to mention imposing enormous costs on the healthcare system)? Bars and restaurants can, in theory, be held legally liable for serving alcohol to obviously inebriated customers, but in practice that law is seldom enforced and we have no legal limits whatever on the sales of alcohol in retail outlets.

Obesity makes people more vulnerable to death not merely from heart disease, but also from COVID, but while we are going to unprecedented links to protect people from dying of COVID, we’re doing nothing to protect them from becoming obese. In fact, we are arguably encouraging obesity by our quiescence relative to the amounts of sugar and fat typically found in processed foods and grotesquely exaggerated restaurant portion sizes.

Read more …

Most people can have faith in their immune systems. But less so when they’re “vaccinated”.

Your Immune System Evolves to Fight Coronavirus Variants (SciAm)

A lot of worry has been triggered by discoveries that variants of the pandemic-causing coronavirus can be more infectious than the original. But now scientists are starting to find some signs of hope on the human side of this microbe-host interaction. By studying the blood of COVID survivors and people who have been vaccinated, immunologists are learning that some of our immune system cells—which remember past infections and react to them—might have their own abilities to change, countering mutations in the virus. What this means, scientists think, is that the immune system might have evolved its own way of dealing with variants.

“Essentially, the immune system is trying to get ahead of the virus,” says Michel Nussenzweig, an immunologist at the Rockefeller University, who conducted some recent studies that tracked this phenomenon. The emerging idea is that the body maintains reserve armies of antibody-producing cells in addition to the original cells that responded to the initial invasion by SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID. Over time some reserve cells mutate and produce antibodies that are better able to recognize new viral versions. “It’s really elegant mechanism that that we’ve evolved, basically, to be able to handle things like variants,” says Marion Pepper, an immunologist at the University of Washington, who was not involved in Nussenzweig’s research. Whether there are enough of these cells, and their antibodies, to confer protection against a shape-shifting SARS-CoV-2 is still being figured out.

Last April, when the pandemic was reaching its first peak in New York City, Nussenzweig and his colleagues sprang into action and began collecting the blood of COVID survivors. There were disturbing early reports of reinfection and waning antibodies, and the scientists wanted to understand how long the immune system could sustain its ability to respond to the novel threat. They took blood samples from people who had been hit by SARS-CoV-2 one month after the infection and then again six months later. What the scientists found was somewhat encouraging. Blood collected at the later date did have lower levels of circulating antibodies, but that made sense because the infection had cleared. And levels of the cells that make antibodies, called memory B cells, remained constant or even increased in some people over time. After an infection, these cells hang around in the body’s lymph nodes and maintain the ability to recognize the virus. If a person gets infected a second time, memory B cells activate, quickly produce antibodies and block the virus from creating a second serious infection.

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But then we put the WHO in charge…

Covid Pandemic Was Preventable, Says WHO-commissioned Report (G.)

The Covid pandemic was a preventable disaster that need not have cost millions of lives if the world had reacted more quickly, according to an independent high-level panel, which castigates global leaders and calls for major changes to bring it to an end and ensure it cannot happen again. The report of the panel, chaired by the former New Zealand prime minister Helen Clark and Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, a former president of Liberia, found “weak links at every point in the chain”. It said preparation was inconsistent and underfunded, the alert system too slow and too meek, while the World Health Organization was underpowered. It concluded the response had exacerbated inequalities. “Global political leadership was absent,” the report said. Clark described February 2020 as “a month of lost opportunity to avert a pandemic, as so many countries chose to wait and see”.

“For some, it wasn’t until hospital ICU beds began to fill that more action was taken,” she said. “And by then it was too late to avert the pandemic impact. What followed then was a winner takes all scramble for PPE and therapeutics. Globally, health workers were tested to their limits and the rates of infection, illness and death soared and continue to soar.” Sirleaf said: “The situation we find ourselves in today could have been prevented. An outbreak of a new pathogen, Sars CoV-2 became a catastrophic pandemic that has now killed more than 3.25 million people, and continues to threaten lives and livelihoods all over the world. It is due to a myriad of failures, gaps and delays in preparedness and response. This was partly due to failure to learn from the past.”

Urgent action must be taken, she said. “There are many reviews of previous health crises that include sensible recommendations. Yet, they sit gathering dust in UN basements and on government shelves … Our report shows that most countries of the world were simply not prepared for a pandemic.” The report was commissioned by the WHO director general at the instigation of member states, who called at the World Health Assembly in May last year for an impartial review of what happened and what could be learned from the pandemic. The panel calls for radical changes to bring heads of state together to oversee pandemic preparations, ensuring the finance and tools the world needs are in place. They want a faster-moving, better-resourced WHO. And they want a commitment now from leaders of affluent countries to supply vaccines for the rest of the world.

Read more …

If the Chinese vaccines don’t work, that leaves us with a lot of questions. Presumably, they wouldn’t work in China, either, for one thing.

Covid Surges In 4 Of 5 Most Vaccinated Countries (F.)

Countries with the world’s highest vaccination rates—including four of the top five most vaccinated—are fighting to contain coronavirus outbreaks that are, on a per-capita basis, higher than the surge devastating India, a trend that has experts questioning the efficacy of some vaccines (especially China’s Sinopharm) and the wisdom of easing restrictions even with most of the population vaccinated. Of the Seychelles, Israel, the UAE, Chile and Bahrain—respectively the world’s five most vaccinated countries—only Israel is not fighting to contain a dangerous surge in Covid-19 infections. Controlling for population, the Seychelles and Bahrain, alongside other highly vaccinated countries like the Maldives and Uruguay, recorded the highest number of daily coronavirus cases worldwide.

The Seychelles, a small island nation with almost double the U.S.’ vaccination rate, recorded 328 cases per 100,000 people, a far higher incidence than India (28) when population is accounted for. The outbreaks in vaccinated countries have sparked concern over how effective some of the Chinese vaccines are versus the western vaccines Israel used, including the Sinopharm vaccine the World Health Organization endorsed Friday that makes up a large part of the countries’ immunization programs. A relaxation of pandemic restrictions and mixed messaging from governments are also touted as potential explanations—tourism-reliant Seychelles and Maldives both (still) welcome tourists, Dubai exited lockdown rapidly and Chile loosened its restrictions and allowed domestic travel.

In many wealthy countries, vaccines have often been framed as the ultimate exit strategy from lockdown. Cases have declined in some countries executing successful and rapid campaigns, including the U.S., the U.K. and Israel, though experts point to places like Chile as a frightening example of what can happen if things are eased too quickly and warn a vaccine on its own is likely not enough. The efficacy of particular vaccines is likely to become a prominent concern as more countries begin to ramp up inoculation campaigns and there are concerns that some, like China’s Sinopharm vaccine, are far less effective at controlling the disease than those produced by the likes of Moderna and Pfizer. World leaders, including the head of the World Health Organization, issue frequent reminders that nobody is “safe until everyone is safe,” an issue underscored by the vast vaccine inequity between nations.

New, potentially more dangerous, variants are emerging across the globe, some of which could potentially evade existing vaccines. The WHO classified the B.1.617 variant tearing through India as a variant of concern Tuesday, noting it may be more infectious. 45%. All five of the world’s most vaccinated countries have at least this proportion of their population partially vaccinated. Data is available for Bahrain (47%), Chile (45%), Israel (60%) and the Seychelles (69%), with the UAE claiming third place thanks to its high number of doses given per capita (which is around 115,000 per 100,000 people; the UAE does not declare more granular data). The Seychelles (61%) and Israel (56%) also have the highest proportion of their population fully vaccinated, followed by Chile (38%) and Bahrain (35%). The U.S., where vaccination rates are declining in all but four states, sits just behind Chile and Bahrain, with 35% of its population now fully vaccinated and 46% partially.

Read more …

Pretty high doses recommended.

Ivermectin Tablets To Be Distributed Among Uttarakhand Residents (OneIndia)

The Uttarakhand government will be distributing Ivermectin, an antiparasitic drug, among the residents of the state as a preventive medicine against the spread of COVID-19, a senior official said. The Uttarakhand government’s announcement comes after Goa and Karnataka issued similar directions. The decision was taken on the recommendation of the state-level clinical technical committee, an order issued by Chief Secretary Om Prakash to all district magistrates said. The panel has recommended the Ivermectin tablet as “mass chemoprophylaxis” to effectively control the surge of COVID-19 infection apart from the vaccination drive, the order said. The 12 mg tablets of the drug will be distributed in a kit to all families through the health department and district magistrates, the order said.


Usually, Ivermectin tablets have to be taken by adults and those above 15 years twice daily for three days after breakfast and dinner. One person will thus need six tablets and a family of four will need 24 tablets. Hence, each kit will contain two dozen tablets, the order said. Children between 10-15 years will take only one tablet daily whereas those aged between 2 to 10 years can be administered the drug only after doctor’s advice. The tablet cannot be given to children below two years, pregnant women and those suffering from liver diseases, it said. The kit will come with directions on how to consume the medicine and dosage for different age groups. Information related to the daily distribution of the kits should be sent to the state nodal officer, the order said. Goa Health Minister Vishwajit Rane had on Monday said all people above 18 years will be given Ivermectin drug irrespective of their coronavirus status to bring down the number of deaths due to the viral disease.

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Sure.

Could Indian Variant Jeopardise UK Unlocking Plan? (DM)

India’s Covid variant is now dominant in four local authorities in England and its rapid spread could jeopardise plans to ease lockdown, experts fear. Analysis by one of the UK’s biggest variant trackers warns the strain is focused in hotspots Bolton and neighbour Blackburn with Darwen, where outbreaks have grown by 93 and 86 per cent in a week, respectively, with more than half of lab-checked cases proven to be the Indian strain. The mutant B.1.617.2 virus is also thought to be behind half of all Covid infections in London, Bedford and South Northamptonshire, although outbreaks in these areas are still small. Boris Johnson said in a statement to Parliament today that the variant was ‘of increasing concern’, warning that a strain that could slip past vaccines would have ‘potential to cause even greater suffering than we endured in January’.

No10’s top scientists fear it may be more transmissible than the currently dominant Kent variant (B.1.1.7) – with one Belgian scientist suggesting it could be 60 per cent faster-spreading – and that it could be behind a gradually rising infection rate in Britain. The UK today confirmed another 2,284 positive tests, up seven per cent on last Wednesday’s figure, along with 11 more deaths. Another 485,260 vaccines were given out yesterday, of which 350,000 were second doses. Early lab trials suggest the current vaccines will still protect against the Indian variants but there are concerns that a faster rate of spread could lead to a bigger outbreak, giving more opportunities for people to get reinfected. AstraZeneca’s Covid vaccine appears to be protecting people from the Indian variant of the virus, reports suggest.

And Pfizer said in a report there was ‘no evidence’ its shot would need to be updated to fight off the current variants. Environment Secretary George Eustice has refused to rule out local lockdowns from next month when the national restrictions are expected to end, adding that officials were ‘closely monitoring’ several outbreaks that had cropped up in recent weeks. But the Prime Minister stayed optimistic about ending lockdown, saying he expects to scrap advice for people to work from home in June and adding that he anticipates town and city centres will be ‘full of bustle again’ soon.

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“Welcome to ‘1984.’ This is the Ministry of Truth..”

Merriam-Webster: ‘Anti-Vaxxer’ Now Includes Those Who Oppose Forced Jabs (RT)

Merriam-Webster is again redefining language to fit a narrative, this time framing its definition of “anti-vaxxer” to include not only people who oppose vaccination, but also those who are against inoculation mandates. The definition on Merriam-Webster’s website says “anti-vaxxer” means “a person who opposes vaccination or laws that mandate vaccination.” It’s not clear when it was written to include opposition to forced jabs, but many observers noticed for the first time on Wednesday. “Welcome to ‘1984.’ This is the Ministry of Truth,” rapper and podcaster Zuby said on Twitter, referring to George Orwell’s dystopian novel.


Other reactions were similar, with many commenters noting that they now fit the dictionary definition of “anti-vaxxer,” even though they believe in the benefits of vaccinations and choose to receive the shots themselves. Merriam-Webster’s definition appears to dismiss the concept of favoring a product personally but being opposed, on principle, to forcing others to use it. Today, I begin my new life as an anti-vaxxer,” podcast host Matt Walsh said. The conservative Young America’s Foundation added that “when the Left control the language, they control the narrative.”

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ha ha ha

124 Retired Generals And Admirals Question Biden’s Mental Health (Hill)

A group of retired U.S. military admirals and generals signed a letter released Tuesday questioning President Biden’s fitness for office and seemingly challenging the outcome of the 2020 presidential election. The letter, signed by 124 former military leaders and posted by Flag Officers 4 America, said the “Constitutional Republic is lost” without “fair and honest elections that accurately reflect the ‘will of the people.’” “The FBI and Supreme Court must act swiftly when election irregularities are surfaced and not ignore them as was done in 2020,” the letter added. Former Attorney General William Barr said in December the Justice Department uncovered no evidence of voter fraud that could have affected the outcome of the 2020 election, The Associated Press (AP) reported.

The signatories also questioned the “mental and physical condition of the Commander in Chief,” adding that national security issues require quick and “accurate” decisions “involving life and limb.” “Recent Democrat leadership’s inquiries about nuclear code procedures sends a dangerous national security signal to nuclear armed adversaries, raising the question about who is in charge,” the letter said. “We must always have an unquestionable chain of command.” While in office, former President Trump periodically questioned Biden’s mental capacity and age during the campaign season, at times referring to him as “sleepy Joe.”

Kevin O’Connor, the president’s doctor, released a report earlier this month maintaining that Biden is a “healthy, vigorous, 77-year-old male, who is fit to successfully execute the duties of the Presidency,” Business Insider reported. The signatories additionally compared potential challenges to ideological battles not seen since America’s founding. “We are in a fight for our survival as a Constitutional Republic like no other time since our founding in 1776,” they said. “The conflict is between supporters of Socialism and Marxism vs. supporters of Constitutional freedom and liberty.” A statement on the Flag Officers 4 America website, says that although its members are no longer engaged in active military service, they are “bound by that oath to do what we can, in our capacity today, to protect our nation from the threats to her freedom.”

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Weeks after Musk says they will be accepted. Some PR.

Is Tesla going to take this policy to China?

Tesla Will Stop Accepting Bitcoin As Payment Due To Fossil Fuel Use (JTN)

Tesla’s Elon Musk announced on Wednesday that the electric vehicle company will no longer accept Bitcoin cryptocurrency as a payment method for automobiles due to the environmental impact of Bitcoin mining. “Tesla has suspended vehicle purchases using Bitcoin. We are concerned about rapidly increasing use of fossil fuels for Bitcoin mining and transactions, especially coal, which has the worst emissions of any fuel,” Musk posted. “Cryptocurrency is a good idea on many levels and we believe it has a promising future, but this cannot come at great cost to the environment.”


However, the business magnate noted that Tesla will not sell off its substantial Bitcoin holdings and plans to resume accepting the cryptocurrency in the future when mining shifts to more sustainable energy. “Tesla will not be selling any Bitcoin and we intend to use it for transactions as soon as mining transitions to more sustainable energy. We are also looking at other cryptocurrencies that use <1% of Bitcoin’s energy/transaction.”

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Still a curious case.

Man Who Alleges He Created Bitcoin Takes £4bn Claim To London High Court (R.)

An Australian computer scientist who alleges he created bitcoin has launched a London high court lawsuit against 16 software developers in an effort to secure bitcoin worth around £4bn pounds (A$5.7bn) he says he owns. In a case that was promptly labelled “bogus” by one defendant, Craig Wright is demanding that developers allow him to retrieve about 111,000 bitcoins held at two digital addresses that he does not have private keys for. In his second London lawsuit in three weeks, Wright alleges he lost the encrypted keys when his home computer network was hacked in February 2020. Police are investigating.

Wright, who is bringing the case through his Seychelles-based Tulip Trading firm, concedes he is a controversial figure since alleging in 2016 that he wrote the bitcoin white paper – which first outlined the technology behind the digital assets – under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto in 2008. The claim is hotly disputed. The Australian, who is autistic and lives in Britain with his wife and two of his three children, alleges in his latest lawsuit that developers have breached their duties to act in the best interests of the rightful owner of globally-traded assets.

“Our client has always maintained that he created bitcoin to operate within existing laws and that in the event of loss or theft, where legitimate ownership can be proven, the developers have a duty to ensure recovery,” said Paul Ferguson, a partner at law firm Ontier, which is representing Wright. The case is being brought against the developers of four networks – Bitcoin Satoshi Vision (BSV), Bitcoin Core (BTC), Bitcoin Cash (BCH) and Bitcoin Cash ABC (ABC) – at addresses in continental Europe, the US, New Zealand, Australia and Japan, a court filing seen by Reuters showed.

Read more …

It’s highly fashionable to try and ban countries from international financial systems.

France Aims To Shut British Firms Out Of EU Financial System (ZH)

As the spat between the UK and France over access to British fishing waters – a contentious issue that nearly scuppered the post-Brexit trade deal – worsens, France has apparently decided to go for the jugular. Last week, French officials threatened to cut off electricity to the UK-dominated island of Jersey while a “protest” staged by French fishermen nearly prompted a confrontation between British and French naval ships. Now, France is threatening to do everything in its power to scupper a EU deal that would broaden access to European markets for British financial firms.

In keeping with threats made by a French diplomat last week, Bloomberg reports that French diplomats are working to stall an agreement that would help restore some of the access British financial firms once enjoyed to European markets, which was lost when Brexit officially came into effect following the end of the transition and the start of 2021. Though it wouldn’t have much practical effect in the near term, reaching a Memorandum of Understanding between the UK and the EU about plans to re-integrate their financial systems is seen by the UK as a critical first step to restoring the level of access they once enjoyed. Negotiations in Brussels later this month will bring EU leaders together to further the discuss a potential deal on market access. To be sure, the EU has said that it’s in no rush to restore the reciprocity rules that would restore trading rights for British financial firms.

Here’s more from BBG: “At the end of March, Britain and the EU had agreed on a forum regarding cross-border financial market access. While granting so-called equivalences that would allow U.K. financial firms to do business in Europe remains a separate and unilateral process, the MoU would help speed up the process. Since Brexit took effect at the beginning of 2021, London-based financial firms have been largely unable to operate in the bloc, forcing banks like JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. to move billions of dollars in assets and thousands of staff to the continent.”

Read more …

 

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Apr 212021
 


Paul Gauguin The wave 1888

 

Genetic Vaccines: Are They the New Thalidomide? (Merritt)
WHO Emergency Committee Rejects Vaccination Demands For Entry Permits (RT)
Vaccine Passports Are Something Made Up By Conspiracy Theorists? (OP)
Damning Data Hands Up An Indictment (Denninger)
The Lockdown Paradigm Is Collapsing (AIER)
Devastating Lawsuit Over Disastrous Bayer’s Monsanto Acquisition (NC)
Relations Between Russia & US Are Being Slowly Dismantled (Lukyanov)
EU Walks Back Claim of 150,000 Russian Troops Near Ukraine Border (Antiwar)
Ukraine’s Zelensky Invites Putin To Meet In War-Torn East (ZH)
EU Reaches Major Climate Deal Ahead Of Biden Climate Summit (AP)

 

 

 

 

Life insurance and COVID. Insurers have had zero reaction to the “increased risks”. There must be a reason for that.

 

 

I don’t feel like talking about George Floyd, too many already do. But I do find it curious that the jury was not sequestered.

Tucker Candace
https://twitter.com/i/status/1384671880116899840

 

 

Excellent long overview of all things Covid by Lee D. Merritt MD.

“Legally, those who get the vaccine are unnamed participants in a Stage IV FDA trial. “

Genetic Vaccines: Are They the New Thalidomide? (Merritt)

Many Americans have heard the news account of Dr. Gregory Michael, a 56-year-old Florida physician who, after receiving his first dose of a Pfizer COVID vaccine on December 18 of last year, was hospitalized three days later. He had a total loss of his platelets — the little blood cells that stop bleeding. In spite of being treated by a team of physicians, he died two weeks later from a brain hemorrhage, and was reported to have had zero platelets. By February 10, 2021, 36 other similar cases were reported in the mainstream media. Pfizer, which along with its partner BioNTech made the vaccine the doctor received, said in a statement that it was aware of the death. Typically, they concluded, “We are actively investigating this case, but we don’t believe at this time that there is any direct connection to the vaccine.”

Pfizer made this “finding” despite several unusual circumstances of the case. First, low-platelet disorders, known as idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP), most commonly affect children, and generally follow a viral illness. Only 10 percent of ITP cases occur in adults, who usually present with a slow onset form of the disorder, referred to as chronic ITP. The disorder usually starts by someone noticing easy bleeding, such as slow oozing from gums or the nose, or bruises showing up without trauma. Rarely do platelets drop below 20,000, and generally treatment either reverses the disease or prolongs life for years in spite of the problem. What happened to this physician and the others seems to be a new previously unseen problem related to vaccination — despite the manufacturers’ claims.

Increasingly, vaccine manufacturers and government officials are following the sarcastic maxim from Samuel Shem’s novel of medical residency entitled The House of God that “if you don’t take a temperature you can’t find a fever.” In other words, if we don’t critically look at the actual recorded patient damage, we won’t find our products to be defective. Now, major media are increasingly getting on board, condemning “vaccine hesitancy” and pushing everyone to get vaccinated for COVID, discounting any dangers. But in the practice of medicine, we are supposed to employ the “precautionary principle” — above all do no harm. Moderna and Pfizer COVID-19 “vaccines” are experimental, employing a genetic technology never before used on humans.

Ironically, many people who wouldn’t purchase the first edition of a new car line are lining up to take an injection they know nothing about, that has never successfully passed animal trials, that could never meet the required “safety level” for a “drug,” and is unapproved for the prevention of COVID except as an emergency experiment. Legally, those who get the vaccine are unnamed participants in a Stage IV FDA trial. Moreover, a vaccine is supposed to prevent disease. By that definition, these agents are not even vaccines. They are more properly termed “experimental unapproved genetic agents.” By admission of the manufacturers themselves, both the Pfizer and Moderna products only lessen the symptoms of COVID; they don’t prevent transmission.

[..] In truth, neither recipients nor their doctors know what is in these “vaccines.” Only a few people at the top of the Moderna, Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, and AstraZeneca research groups really understand them. These mRNA injections produce a potentially deadly pathogen — the spike protein — in your cells. The Emergency Use Authorization for the Pfizer product says that it contains “a nucleoside-modified messenger RNA (modRNA) encoding the viral spike glycoprotein (S) of SARS-CoV-2.” If your immune system is strong enough to withstand this onslaught and create some immunity, you may survive the first onslaught. But even if you don’t die in the short term, mRNA is an epigenetic controller of DNA. Though this foreign synthetic mRNA doesn’t actually become part of your DNA to make you a “GMO human,” as some people have been worrying about, it can control DNA in ways we have yet to completely understand.

Read more …

But nobody listens anymore.

WHO Emergency Committee Rejects Vaccination Demands For Entry Permits (RT)

The WHO Emergency Committee has strictly rejected the use of corona vaccination cards as a requirement for entry permits. According to the panel, there is still too little clarity as to whether and how the vaccination prevents the virus from being passed on. The committee reiterated its previously expressed position on Monday and again opposed the use of vaccination records as a condition for resuming international travel opportunities. He cited the fact that there is so far no clear evidence of the effects of the vaccination on the transmission of the coronavirus. At the same time, health experts described such requirements as unfair because of the uneven distribution of vaccines around the world. They would deepen existing rifts between people from different countries, it said from the panel.

Instead, countries were recommended to rely more on quarantine measures for international travelers and to present other “coordinated, time-limited, risk- and evidence-based approaches to health measures”. The statement by the independent emergency committee that advises the World Health Organization (WHO) on pandemic issues comes amid concerns over persistent inequality in the global distribution of coronavirus vaccines. The pandemic could hardly be overcome unless all countries had access to sufficient vaccines, drugs and tests. The committee therefore recommended that the “emergency of international scope” declared at the end of January 2020 be maintained until further notice. The WHO had previously criticized the growing gap between vaccine use in different countries as a “moral scandal” and “catastrophic moral failure”.

The organization called on world leaders to promote a fairer distribution of vaccines. Nevertheless, the WHO Emergency Committee praised the progress made by the international vaccine procurement initiative COVAX and called on its member countries to support it. The program, within the framework of which a total of two billion doses of the corona protective agent is to be distributed worldwide by the end of 2021, is primarily dependent on poorer countries for deliveries with vaccines. In addition, the committee recommended that the WHO test new vaccines for their safety and effectiveness more quickly and that the responsible authorities in the member countries be strengthened. Risk monitoring should be strengthened, especially with regard to new mutated virus variants, he added.

Read more …

Double faced?

“.. the World Health Organization, who recently opposed the creation of a vaccine passport, is now working to do just that.”

Vaccine Passports Are Something Made Up By Conspiracy Theorists? (OP)

In March, the European Commission opened a proposal to create a “Digital Green Certificate” to allow travel inside the EU during the “pandemic.” This Digital Green Certificate would serve as a documentation that a person has been vaccinated for COVID, received a negative test for COVID, or has recovered from it. It will include a QR Code to ensure the authenticity and security of the certificate and will be made free of charge in paper or digital form. The Digital Green Certificate will have three certificates included within it including: • Vaccination certificates, stating brand of the vaccine used, data and place of inoculation and number of doses administered. • Negative test certificates (either a NAAT/RT-PCR test or a rapid antigen test). Self-tests will be excluded for the time being. • Medical certificates for people who have recovered from COVID-19 in the last 180 days.

According to Euro News, “Where member states accept proof of vaccination to waive certain public health restrictions such as testing or quarantine, they would be required to accept, under the same conditions, vaccination certificates issued under the Digital Green Certificate system,” the Commission said in a statement. [..] The instrument will be valid in all EU countries and will be open for Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway as well as Switzerland. It will be issued to EU citizens and their family members, regardless of their nationality. Other countries are following suit in the Digital Vaccine Passport scheme. But while the EU debates what sort of technology to use and what parameters will be included, various European countries are taking matters into their own hands, choosing instead to create their own versions of a vaccine passport, all varying between each country.

For instance, Estonia is planning to launch its own pilot program at the end of April. France is doing the same. In addition, the World Health Organization, who recently opposed the creation of a vaccine passport, is now working to do just that. And they are all working with the usual suspects – Google, Apple, Microsoft, IBM and a host of other corporations. What is more likely is that European countries will all implement different versions of the passport and, in the midst of chaos, the EU will have to step in and standardize the process. The WHO will likely lead the charge in implementing the process worldwide.

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“The CDC’s own data proves they lied.”

Damning Data Hands Up An Indictment (Denninger)

I still can’t find 500,000 excess deaths caused by Covid in 2020; they’re simply not there among the diseases the CDC reported out and since the base risk is 1/50,000 even across half the population being infected we could only account for 3,000 deaths. It is thus clear that if in fact Covid-19 has killed anywhere near the number of people claimed those other morbid conditions, all of which are serious diseases standing alone, have to account for the increase between them. Indeed the most-common, by far (40% of additional deaths by disease) were due to heart attacks and the next was diabetes at 13%. Between diabetes and heart attacks, both almost-exclusively due to lifestyle choices and thus your personal decisions, 53% of the excess 120,475 deaths are accounted for. If we add in strokes, which also are largely lifestyle-related then we’re at about 2/3rds.

Among those diseases that are allegedly “the biggest comorbid factors” I can find only 120,475 more deaths that Covid-19 may have contributed to and which included those diseases as a causal factor in total. Did Covid-19 cause all of those 120,000 additional deaths or were they caused by, in the case of diabetes, strokes and heart attacks for example, the additional 50lbs that a material percentage of people put on during the lockdowns (and over 20lbs on average!) from eating takeout trash full of fast carbs and being involuntarily cooped up in their homes? We do not know so this can only describe an upper boundary or caused mortality — not a lower one. This analysis doesn’t mean even more people didn’t die with Covid, but an alleged “Covid” death that wasn’t accompanied by one of the CDC’s specifically-called out diseases.

The CDC “selects” these specific categories and ICD codes, I remind you, because they’re particularly large percentages of the whole among diseases that kill people. When the CDC says that only a few thousand people died of Covid alone this data is rather interesting wouldn’t you say? After all being shot while Covid positive, or ODing, dying in a car wreck or wrapping your motorcycle around a telephone pole in no way implies you died of Covid, does it? To so-imply or state is to deliberately deceive the public and inculcate fear; it is a lie. Yet the media and government have in fact said it did because they have repeatedly claimed more than four times the number of people who the CDC links to specific diseases in fact died “of” Covid-19. The CDC’s own data proves they lied.


How fear distorts perception.

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“.. the presence or absence of lockdowns in the face of the virus seem completely uncorrelated with any disease trajectory.”

The Lockdown Paradigm Is Collapsing (AIER)

It’s taken much longer than it should have but at last it seems to be happening: the lockdown paradigm is collapsing. The signs are all around us. The one-time hero of the lockdown, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, is now deeply unpopular and most voters want him to resign. Meanwhile, polls have started to favor Florida governor and lockdown opponent Ron DeSantis for influence over the GOP in the future. This remarkable flip in fortunes is due to the dawning realization that the lockdowns were a disastrous policy. DeSantis and fellow anti-lockdown governor Kristi Noem are the first to state the truth bluntly. Their honesty has won them both credibility.

Meanwhile, in Congressional hearings, Representative James Jordan (R-OH) demanded that Dr. Fauci account for why closed Michigan has worse disease prevalence than neighboring Wisconsin which has long been entirely open. Fauci pretended he couldn’t hear the question, couldn’t see the chart, and then didn’t understand. Finally he just sat there silent after having uttered a few banalities about enforcement differentials. The lockdowners are now dealing with the huge problem of Texas. It has been fully open with no restrictions for 6 weeks. Cases and deaths fell dramatically in the same period. Fauci has no answer. Or compare closed California with open Florida: similar death rates. We have a full range of experiences in the US that allow comparisons between open and closed and disease outcomes. There is no relationship.

Or you could look to Taiwan, which had no stringencies governing its 23.5 million people. Deaths from Covid-19 thus far: 11. Sweden, which stayed open, performed better than most of Europe. The problem is that the presence or absence of lockdowns in the face of the virus seem completely uncorrelated with any disease trajectory. AIER has assembled 33 case studies from all over the world showing this to be true. Why should any of this matter? Because the “scientists” who recommended lockdowns had posited very precisely and pointedly that they had found the way to control the virus and minimized negative outcomes. We know for sure that the lockdowns imposed astonishing collateral damage. What we do not see is any relationship between lockdowns and disease outcomes.

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“It looks like Bayer will eventually declare bankruptcy.”

Devastating Lawsuit Over Disastrous Bayer’s Monsanto Acquisition (NC)

The Bayer purchase of Monsanto has been described as the worst deal of all time, beating even the train wreck of Time Warner’s AOL acquisition. As we wrote in August: “Yes, nearly every penny of the $66 billion that Bayer paid for Monsanto has gone poof. Yes, Bayer is the first time in German corporate history that a public company got a majority vote of no confidence from its shareholders. Yes, Bayer is at risk of bleeding out over seemingly endless Monsanto-related liability claims (Roundup has so taken the center stage that what would ordinarily be a big-deal litigation drain, Dicamba, is treated as an afterthought). Unlike any other company ever facing similar litigation, Bayer has neither taken Roundup off the market, nor reformulated it, nor put a cancer warning on it. It looks like Bayer will eventually declare bankruptcy.”

The original filing did a devastating job of describing why Bayer was so keen to do the horrific Monsanto, and on such terrible terms: the above-mentioned all cash offer, which it funded by borrowing boatloads of debt. Bayer was small enough in the world of ever-growing chemical and Pharma behemoths to make for a nice meal. Acquisitive Pfizer had just had a big deal scuppered for legal reasons, and Bayer’s management worried it might be the next target. It settled quickly on Monsanto despite or one might argue because of its terrible reputation; it served as a poisoned pill. The litany of horrors goes on. Bayer was unable to do proper due diligence by being too close a competitor. Monsanto had to sell a trophy asset for anti-trust reasons….yet Bayer didn’t demand a price adjustment.

The acquisition process dragged on long enough that the WHO had named glysophate a probable carcinogen, yet Bayer didn’t beat a retreat. Bayer believed the scientists who insisted that glysophate hadn’t been proven to cause cancer, when the WHO designation was more than enough to set off a tsunami of product liability lawsuits, many of which garnered eye-popping awards (among the ugly facts that came out was that Monsanto employees wore hazmat-type gear when working with glysophate yet made no warnings about the need to wear protective coverings to consumers).

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Maybe not all that slowly.

Relations Between Russia & US Are Being Slowly Dismantled (Lukyanov)

If the proposed summit between US President Joe Biden and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin goes ahead, it will attract the attention of the world’s media and give both men a PR boost. But nothing will fundamentally change. Russian-American relations have gone through some interesting curves on the road recently, leaving many commentators at a loss. Stern warnings, a military showdown, reported plans to deploy the US Navy to the Black Sea (subsequently apparently cancelled), President Joe Biden calling his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin and proposing a face-to-face summit, followed by a new round of sanctions that apparently could have been worse but would do for now.

Next came Biden’s executive order that focused on the growing Russia “threat,” and then another invitation to talk in an address that Washington viewed as a gesture of reconciliation. All of this, and in such a short time, does seem chaotic. However, we will get some clarity if we consider two factors. First, what we are witnessing right now is the final stage in the process of dismantling relations between Russia and the US as they have existed for several decades. Second, most international players’ actions are motivated by complex domestic issues. Reacting to the challenges facing them on the home front always takes precedence, while foreign policy is either a secondary matter, or, if they are dealing with a major power that wouldn’t remove itself from the arena, it becomes an instrument for solving internal problems.

Let’s begin with the first factor. Since the late 1940s, Moscow and Washington have been each other’s main conversation focus. The dialogue has been confrontational in nature but pivotal for the global political landscape. It once was at the center of everything, because the two powers engaged in it had equal military and political capabilities. During the Cold War years, the parties worked out an efficient, functional system of stabilizing and rationalizing the confrontation. In the 1990s, parity disappeared in many areas – except nuclear capabilities. But it wasn’t enough for maintaining the core elements of the former type of relations – neither in their essential aspects, nor in ritualistic ones.

Significant advances were made at the end of the 20th and beginning of the 21st century, such as mutual openness or political and humanitarian contacts, but they didn’t change the nature of the relations. The two countries stayed rivals, but now with drastically different levels of power and resources. And as disagreements grew, the openness started evolving into a disadvantage. We are not going to analyze here what went wrong or discuss the very possibility of things developing differently. Today, Russia and the USA do not see each other as key partners – even in confrontational engagement. Each country views the other as more of a nuisance, getting in the way of executing their strategy. During the previous Cold War years, there was some mutual respect between the Soviet Union and America, as each country recognized its opponent’s ideological and political legitimacy. It is gone now.

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Hey, who’s going to check?

EU Walks Back Claim of 150,000 Russian Troops Near Ukraine Border (Antiwar)

The European Union had to correct a claim made by its foreign policy chief, Josep Borrell, concerning Russian troops near the Ukrainian border. Borrell told reporters on Monday that there were “over 150,000” Russian troops near the border. The number was corrected in a transcript of his briefing on the EU’s website to “over 100,000.” Despite the change, it’s still unclear how the EU determined that there are over 100,000 Russian troops near the border. Russia has announced the deployment of additional forces near Ukraine in recent weeks, but nothing has indicated it sent over 100,000 troops to the region. Last week, a spokesperson for Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky claimed there were 80,000 troops stationed along the border of Ukraine, with 40,000 of them in Crimea.


The fact that Russia has troops in Crimea is no surprise. Moscow had a military base in the peninsula even before Crimea joined the Russian Federation in 2014. An alarmist report from the Daily Mail published satellite images that it claims show a Russian military build-up at a base in Crimea. But the base is located in southern Crimea, nowhere near the conflict zone in Ukraine’s eastern Donbas region. Demonstrating that the Daily Mail report lacks any credibility, it repeats Borrell’s original claim that 150,000 Russian troops have amassed as fact. When asked about Borrel’s comments, Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said the situation is “concerning” to the US. “What I can tell you is, in general, we have continued to see this build-up increase. And again, that is concerning to us,” He said. While Kirby didn’t offer any numbers, he claimed the Russian troop deployment is “certainly bigger” than the 2014 deployment Kirby said resulted in a “violation of Ukrainian sovereignty and territorial integrity.”

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What would Putin stand to gain?

Ukraine’s Zelensky Invites Putin To Meet In War-Torn East (ZH)

Following on the heels of last week’s Joe Biden invitation to Vladimir Putin for a bilateral summit proposed for the summer to tackle a range of still simmering contentious issues, Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky has issued a surprised invitation late Tuesday for Putin to meet him in the war-torn east of Ukraine. In making the announcement Zelensky told Putin that such a direct high states meeting where the two leaders can talk de-escalation is essential as there are a “million lives at stake” in any potential outbreak of major conflict, according to AFP: “Zelensky told the Russian leader that he was ready “to invite you to meet anywhere in the Ukrainian Donbass where the war is going on”, adding that “million of lives at stake” in the conflict between government forces and pro-Kremlin separatists in the east of the country.”


Days ago Zelensky traveled to an area near Mariupol in Donetsk where he “walked the front line with the troops” amid renewed fighting with Russian-backed separatists in the eastern Donbass region. Zelensky’s direct invitation to Putin to meet over the crisis came the same day Russia’s Defense Ministry justified its troop build-up in the South, particularly in Crimea and near the border with Ukraine, by calling it a necessary “deterrent” to NATO’s “destabilization” of the region. Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said that “Nato’s attempts to destabilize situations in the Middle East and Transcaucasian region force Russia to take symmetric measures of strategic deterrence,” according to an Interfax citation by Bloomberg. Following Biden’s proposal to meet face-to-face with Putin we and others noted that it appeared Ukraine’s leadership had been effectively sidelined by the two rival superpowers.

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Stop paying attention to these “deals”. It’s PR only.

EU Reaches Major Climate Deal Ahead Of Biden Climate Summit (AP)

The European Union reached a tentative climate deal that is intended to make the 27-nation bloc climate-neutral by 2050, with member states and parliament agreeing on new carbon emissions targets on the eve of a virtual summit hosted by U.S. President Joe Biden. “Our political commitment to becoming the first climate-neutral continent by 2050 is now also a legal commitment. The climate law sets the EU on a green path for a generation,” European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said early Wednesday. Under the provisional deal reached after officials negotiated through the night, the EU will also commit itself to an intermediate target of cutting greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55% by 2030 compared to 1990 levels.


“It was high time for the agreement, as Europe has to show where it stands in view of the positive developments in the USA and China,” said European Parliament member Peter Liese, the negotiator for the EPP Christian Democrat group. The 2030 target had been 40%, but under the pressure of increasing evidence of climate change and a more environmentally conscious electorate, it was pushed up, although the EU legislature had wanted a higher target of 60%. Lawmakers from The Greens specifically complained that too many accounting tricks had been used to reach the level of 55% and that in reality the reduction would equate to a 52.8% reduction of direct emissions. Its environmental expert, MEP Michael Bloss said EU member nations and parliament “have rushed through a weak climate law for the sake of a photo-op with President Joe Biden.”

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The football SuperLeague has self-imploded in 48 hours. Here’s why Europe’s biggest teams wanted the league: their debts. They made a deal with JPMorgan that would give them some $4 billion. And even that was just a deferred loan, payable over 23 years. To get out of debt today, get in a worse situation in the future. Hey, goverments do it too.

 

 

 

 

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