Links 2/25/2021

Dear patient readers,

Apologies for what may come off as whinging. I am tired and even more out of sorts than usual (and you know by now that a sunny disposition is not my trademark). So you are again getting short rations on original posts.

I’ve had a low-grade bug for 2+ weeks, definitely not Covid but enough to make me even more fatigued than normal, plus frustration about my worsening orthopedic issues (and now some pain, and yours truly has exceedingly high pain tolerance, so this isn’t something I’m used to) and a lack of any good treatment options, plus more hassles with my mother (the latest being one of our four aides has recently started having trouble transferring my mother in and out of her wheelchair; I don’t like the idea of bringing in a new aide, and I have very limited options that way. The alternative would be hiring an occupational therapist to nominally train my mother but actually train the aide. That sounds great save for finding said occupational therapist. I know pretty much no one in the community. The agency who employs the aide had no leads and said to ask my mother’s MD. His past physical therapist referral was to a nursing agency that put my mother through such an exhausting “assessment” drill that she refused additional visits. I guarantee his office will again suggest that agency).

Must See! Once in a Lifetime Dolphin ‘Stampede’ Captured on Film off the Coast of California Flipboard (David L)

Rare bird: ‘Half-male, half-female’ cardinal snapped in Pennsylvania BBC

How did dogs get to the Americas? An ancient bone fragment holds clues PhysOrg (ma)

In Pictures: Mount Etna eruption lights up Sicily’s night sky BBC (David L)

Scientists May Have Just Solved The Long-Standing Mystery of Earth’s ‘Missing Ice’ Science Alert (Chuck L)

Cutting down forests: what are the drivers of deforestation? Our World in Data

Record-high Arctic freshwater will flow to Labrador Sea, affecting local and global oceans PhysOrg (rh)

Francis Gooding · G&Ts on the Veranda: The Science of Man London Review of Books (Anthony L)


Coronavirus: 11 test positive on New York rescue flight to Israel Jerusalem Post. Resilc: “They are Hamas’ best weapon.”

Coronaangst ridden? Overzoomed? Covid inspires 1,200 new German words Guardian


The coronavirus is airborne. Here’s how to know if you’re breathing other people’s breath. Washington Post

Coronavirus Reinfection Will Soon Become Our Reality Atlantic (David L)

Why are we still disinfecting surfaces to stop COVID-19? Popular Science (resilc)


FDA scientists endorse J&J’s Covid vaccine, as new data shed light on efficacy STAT

More Americans now say academic concerns should be a top factor in deciding to reopen K-12 schools Pew. Note:

ND House passes anti-mask mandate bill KFYRTV

C.D.C. Traces Covid Outbreaks in Gyms, Urging Stricter Precautions New York Times. Resulting from energetic group classes. (David L)


China’s Shale Boom Was Over Before It Began OilPrice


A Reply to Perry Anderson on Europe Denis McShane (guurst). Quite the takedown on a number of important points.

Bank of England to ‘resist firmly’ EU raid on London, warns governor Guardian (Kevin W). Um, that horse left the barn and is in the next county. France and the ECB tried forcing Euro derivatives trading to the continent because euro many years back. The ECJ ruled they couldn’t do that because it amounted to discriminating against an EU member. With the UK outside the EU, there’s no impediment to the EU insisting Euro clearing take place in the EU…the same way dollar clearing takes place in the US (take note of all those foreign banks with New York branches for that reason).

The impact of the SNP fallout is hard to predict BBC (Kevin W)

The feud between Sturgeon and Salmond could derail Scottish independence Guardian (vlade)

The EU will choke off Europe’s recovery Thomas Fazi. Fazi is excellent on Eurobanking but a bit pathological on the topic of the EU.

Rage boils over amid Argentina’s unrelenting femicide crisis AlJazeera (Chuck L)


The real regional problem with the Iran deal Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft

Is Harvard denying Tenure to Cornel West over his views on Palestine? Juan Cole

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

China Hijacked an NSA Hacking Tool in 2014—and Used It for Years Wired

Imperial Collapse Watch

Writing Our Own Foreign Policy Destiny American Conservative


What the Bond Market Is Telling Us About the Biden Economy New York Times. UserFriendly: “Kill me.”

Corporate Lawyers Line Up for Justice Department Top Slots Intercept

President Biden Signs Executive Order Reviewing Supply Chains C-SPAN (Kevin C). As we said earlier, a study = a handwave

Capitol Seizure

Takeaways from the Senate hearing on the US Capitol attack CNN (Kevin W)

Ex-Capitol security chiefs say they didn’t receive FBI memo warning of Jan. 6 “war” Axios. Resilc: “They are using the same 9/11 excuse……..the dog ate my notice that Saudis were going to fly planes into buildings……notice the FBI, God’s gift to MSNBC, is always involved….”

Democratic fury with GOP explodes in House The Hill

The very convenient personal reason why Trump actually wants to run in 2024 Independent

Andrew Cuomo and the Lincoln Project were media-created debacles. What now? Guardian

Why Only 16 Districts Voted For A Republican And A Democrat In 2020 FiveThirtyEight

Tennessee Republicans Propose Using Fingerprints For Voter ID Forbes. Resilc: “Next, strip searches.”

Drunk driving charge dropped against Springsteen; $500 fine for drinking at beach Reuters. Resilc: “Was this in his Obomba chat fest podcast.”

Barack Obama and Bruce Springsteen’s Podcast Is Another Empty Appeal to Unity Vice. Resilc: “Why people for vote for trump is this bs?

It’s time to confront the dark postscript to America’s role in defeating the Nazis CNN (ma)

Black Injustice Tipping Point

Daniel Prude: Officers in ‘spit hood’ Rochester death to face no charges Independent


Texas’s deregulated electricity market raised consumer costs by $28B: WSJ The Hill (Kevin W). Note this does not include the cost after the deep freeze.

Surviving the Texas Freeze in a Gerrymandered City Slate (resilc)


Sheryl Sandberg and Top Facebook Execs Silenced an Enemy of Turkey to Prevent a Hit to the Company’s Business ProPublica (resilc)

News site Stuff left Facebook. Seven months later, traffic is just fine and trust is higher Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism (furzy)

Is your house going to flood because of climate change? These maps will tell you Fast Company (David L)

Jet Fuel Demand Is The Only Thing Holding Oil Back Oilprice (Kevin W)

Cleveland Hopkins readies proposal for new airport terminal Cleveland. Carla R: “Illusions and delusions in Cleveland. Very sad indeed.”

As Buildings’ Life Spans Shrink, Developers Try to Adjust New York Times (resilc)

Prices in Europe’s carbon market, the world’s biggest, are soaring Economist

Hyundai will recall 82,000 Kona EVs to replace batteries ars technica

Duke is a Trademark Bully! Marginal Revolution

Visa, Mastercard plan swipe fee hike in April as their stock gains lag S&P 500 Seeking Alpha

Fed Outage Raises Questions on Wall Street as Services Restored Bloomberg (furzy)

Class Warfare

Chump change: The Romney–Cotton minimum wage proposal leaves 27 million workers without a pay increase Economic Policy Institute

Inside a Battle Over Race, Class and Power at Smith College New York Times

The American dream is now in Denmark The.Ink

Antidote du jour (furzy):

And a bonus (guurst)

And a contrast (Chuck L):

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. cnchal

    > The U.S. Air Force admitted that the F-35 stealth fighter has failed

    Who is going to tell Joe these are for show only?

    When are all the people involved in this gross example of procurement malpractice going to be fired for incompetence and corruption? Or is it going to be a crime to demand accountability?

    I think as a reward for this incompetence that the military budget be slashed 80% and every general be fired on the spot.

    1. Louis Fyne

      Plane spotters have seen F-117s (designed in Reagan-Carter years) resuming training flights even though the party line is that they withdrawn from service 10+ years ago and mothballed.

      smells like that the F-35 is so deficient that the Air Force has decided that it really needs the F117

      1. The Rev Kev

        Is that wise? The story of how a F-117 was shot down by the Serbians using old Soviet technology is fairly well known. What is not is that a second of these birds was hit during the same war but fortunately managed to make it back to base. But the damage was enough that it was junked. Not a great record. Considering the fact that these high-maintenance planes were mothballed way back in 2006, I cannot see the advantage in trying to bring them back-

      2. PlutoniumKun

        The operating life of nearly every single aircraft the F-35 was supposed to replace has been significantly extended (essentially, forever), which is already an admission that it won’t do what it was supposed to do – i.e. replace everything from the A-10 to the F-16 and F18 and everything in between.

        That said, I suspect that the F117 is being taken out of mothballs for training or research purposes, its hard to see it being worth the embarrassment and expense of making it fully operational again. The only possible use for it I can see is situations where you need stealth but using a B-1 is too risky.

        1. Kim

          The B-52 is old enough to be on Medicare.

          55% your tax dollars go to the military. It’s time for a national tax strike.

        2. Pelham

          Nazi Germany famously made the same mistake with a number of their aircraft designs, serving up multi-purpose planes that didn’t fill any of their roles very well. The Me-110 is one example. You’d think that some of the Nazis we welcomed with open arms after the war would have advised against this.

          1. Procopius

            Pelham, those guys retired or died decades ago. Wernher von Braun died in 1977. Figure none of them could have been much less than 40 in 1945, because they not only had to get the academic credentials, they had to achieve some degree of fame for our OSS and Military Intelligence to look for them. The thing you have to remember is that the F-35, the USN Gerald Ford, and the Bradly “Fighting” Vehicle are not weapons of war, they’re a jobs program and also a retirement supplement for generals. A related topic I’d like to see analyzed is the way the military does not do strategy any more. It’s been outsourced to civilian academics and think tanks like Rand Corp.

      3. ForeignNational(ist)

        It’s believed by enthusiasts that some F117 airframes are kept airworthy to train pilots on other aircraft how to deal with strange planes or to test equipment. Not very many airframes have been observed flying – it’s fewer than ten, I think. Not exactly enough to replace the F35. Air forces commonly retain older aircraft for training and testing. Given how unique the F117 is, I’m not surprised USAF has done the same for it.

        1. Charger01

          Despite its Vietnam-era technology, the A-10 warthog still exists for close air support for our on the ground soldiers. No plane is a jack-of-all trades, each one is a specific tool for a specific role. F35 was an attempt to be everything to everyone that ultimately could not do anything well.

          1. Wukchumni

            F35 was an attempt to be everything to everyone that ultimately could not do anything well.


            Until the mid-1980s, AMF’s range of consumer goods included powered model airplanes, snow skis, lawn and garden equipment, Ben Hogan golf clubs, Voit inflatable balls, exercycles and exercise equipment, Hatteras Yachts, Alcort Sailboats, Nimble bicycles, motorized bicycles, mopeds, and SCUBA gear. For a time, AMF owned Harley-Davidson motorcycles. Aging production facilities and increasing quality control problems in some product lines caused sales declines in the late 1970s and early 1980s. The company’s vast diversified output proved difficult to efficiently manage, and after suffering a series of losses, the company sold off its operations.


          2. km

            You’d think that the DoD would have learned something from the F-111 debacle, which was also a hugely complicated and obscenely expensive attempt to build An Airplane That Does Everything For Everybody.

            Actually, the DoD did indeed learn something from that fiasco, but it wasn’t the lesson that we might have hoped that they would learn. This is typical of sociopaths, who learn only from reward and punishment, but who do in fact learn.

            1. Guy Reaville

              I was USAF aircrew for 20 years and also a bit of a aircraft historian. I flew the F-4G and EA-6B operationally and in combat. I also flew the F-15E about 20 times and had test missions in the F-16D. One fine day at Nellis AFB in 1995 I flew an F-111F for a memorable 2.4 hours in a full on combat training mission. The other side was top F-16 and F-15 pilots trying to stop F-111, F-15E, and B-1 bombers protected by F-18s. The 111 was incredibly impressive. Somewhere in the second hour I realized that this jet was made to take on the Moscow air defenses by itself. My assessment was that it would probably win. There is no doubt that the 111 was a bad program with regard to cost. There is no doubt that it was based on a silly do it all system requirement. But it still has the lowest combat loss rate in USAF history including its first combat use in Vietnam. At that time, if I had to survive a bombing mission, my pink body would be happy to saddle up the 111.

              Regarding the F-35, it was always a political program that the USMC sold its soul to get. The vertical takeoff and land requirement killed it for the USAF and USN. We can do much better but the forces arrayed against designing and building top systems are just awful. Congressional demands are very difficult to deal with. General Officer’s get corrupted. Testing is compromised by political optics. Contractors are also corrupt.

              The F-35 is a new type of result. Generally the jets work out but cost too much (F-111, F-22). The F-35 just doesn’t seem to work. The previous generation of F-15,F-16, F-18 were incredibly reliable and easy to operate. Since then not so much.

              Time to give the Pentagon less money. They do better when they have to think hard and make tough choices.

    2. SteveD

      When are all the people involved in this gross example of procurement malpractice going to be fired for incompetence and corruption?

      That is a lot of people, methinks.

      In the 2016 election cycle, part of Jill Stein’s platform was a radical reduction in military spending. 5 years later she is still regularly attacked as a “Putin puppet” or similar.

    3. zagonostra

      Ok so taxpayers got fleeced for $1.7 Trillion for a failed military weapon, but according to Kagan in the “Writing Our Own Foreign Policy Destiny – American Conservative” article:

      The time has come to tell Americans that there is no escape from global responsibility, that they have to think beyond the protection of the homeland. They need to understand that the purpose of NATO and other alliances is to defend not against direct threats to U.S. interests but against a breakdown of the order that best serves those interests. They need to be told honestly that the task of maintaining a world order is unending and fraught with costs but preferable to the alternative.

      So $1.7T today, $2.7T tomorrow, get used to it, there is no “escape from global responsibility” even if your citizens don’t have shelter, food, or healthcare. We can’t have the global order or the interest it serves breakdown.

      1. Wukchumni

        The countries we’ve been at war with this century have little or nothing in the way of air forces, i’m not saying we could make do with old F-4 Phantoms, but you wouldn’t need all that against a no go foe.

        NZ Air Force ditched their fighter jets 20 years ago, and the country spent the money like honey instead in luring the rest of the world to come and see the land of the long white cloud.

        Swords into time-shares.

      2. km

        They have to!” “They need!

        Sez who? And who does this Kagan jerk think he is, lecturing us as if we were a bunch of naughty schoolkids who didn’t turn in their homework?

      3. Swamp Yankee

        This is exactly the argument J.A. Hobson makes in IMPERIALISM (1902, I believe). He argues, as a social liberal, that the real unsaid purpose of the British Empire and its vast military expenditure on fleets, garrisons, etc., was to prevent having any money left over for social democracy at home, as policymakers and parliamentarians would regretfully report to the waiting public. Seems familiar….

        1. R

          Perhaps also to avoid the need for social democracy as well as preemptively defund it.

          The empire gave a great number of otherwise positionless working class and middle class men an outlet, as soldiers and sailors, merchant sailors, planters, mining engineers etc. All housed in comparative luxury and status a good 3,000+ miles from home, which xcarried on quietly without them. Many stayed out there, marrying among the other subalterns of Empire, or intermarryimg locally. A few came back broken or disgraced and a few came back triumphant and rich as nabobs.

          It would be interesting to study whether those two hundred years’ export of its dissatisfied adventurers has permanently made more docile the nation’s character or whether the last fifty years cloistering them Home will create the conditions for change. Or whether they were all B Ark people in the first place…. :-)

      4. JBird4049

        Looks like he’s talking about his good friend There Is No Alternative.

        I know that I must sound like a broken record about the homeless, but just what universe are many of our elites along with the nomenklatura and the apparatchiks in?

        The Bay Area now has more encampments that I can see just by driving around. I don’t want to think about what I am likely to see in San Francisco once I drive in. The unhoused are gradually not hiding, I think; perhaps all the good spots are taken.

    4. Mikerw0

      Q: What is a camel?

      A: A horse designed by committee

      How much says at least one part of this plane is from virtually every congressional district.

      1. km

        “How much says at least one part of this plane is from virtually every congressional district.”

        Not every district, but enough of congressional districts to ensure that the project was funded.

        This was entirely intentional.

    5. John A

      It is equally mindboggling that the European NATO partners (aka vassals) have pretty much all bought this turkey. I was going to say Israel had also bought them, but I imagine, they got them for free.

      1. km

        Australia, good lackeys that they are, also bought some.

        I suspect that the Eurosatraps weren’t given much of a choice.

        1. The Rev Kev

          Absolutely. Our Air Force people said that this turkey was the wrong plane altogether for local conditions so our politicians brought it anyway to suck up to Washington. So now our air defenses will be compromised for the next several decades going ahead. We weren’t really buying a plane. We were buying Washington’s political and military support which I call a devil’s bargain as it is so unreliable.

    6. Wukchumni

      I feel as if I have been lucky enough to be a beneficiary able to have gotten my hearings worth from one very loud airplane flying at say 8k above us, with the added bonus of canyon walls below reverberating the sound just as thunder in the high country can go for 10-15 second stanzas, so there’s that.

      I was kind of terrified inside when we had 8 out of 11 days with the Edsel of the air aloft in the waning month of the Presidency, casting aspersions on war with Iran, I ran it through my mind the what ifs, all for naught.

      In the F-35’s defense, it can still get it up.

    7. David

      I yield to no-one etc.etc. but it’s likely that this is, in fact, a bigger and more important story than just incompetence over one aircraft. I rather suspect, in fact, that what the US tried to do with the F-35 was actually impossible from the start, and that an important terminal stage has been reached in the development of combat aircraft.

      Ever since the McNamara years in the US, the search has been on for aircraft that can do more, carry more types of ordnance, and generally be more versatile and require smaller crews (ideally one). The problem is that in practice this has led to aircraft like the AlphaJet and the Tornado (originally called the Multi-role Combat Aircraft, interestingly) where different requirements have essentially led to different aircraft, albeit with the same name and the same external appearance. The last generation of at least notionally multi-role aircraft was represented by the Typhoon and the Rafale, but both of those were designed twenty years ago, and aren’t expected to be as all-singing-all-dancing as the F-35, although the Rafale has a naval variant which seems to work OK. I think we’ve actually arrived at a dead end, and it wouldn’t surprise me to see a move back to simpler and cheaper aircraft designed to carry out fewer tasks. Experience suggests that, in the end, it probably wouldn’t work out more expensive, and would probably produce more reliable aircraft.

      1. JTMcPhee

        Drone and autonomous aircraft will outperform any equivalent thing that has to carry all the stuff that’s needed to keep one Top Gunner drugged with amphetamines and suffering pilot overload and unable to survive more than 6 or so Gs. And the whole mechanism of war (that undefined term) is batshit crazy and a driver of global warming.

        This trip is not necessary.

      2. PlutoniumKun

        Of course, the US has a particular problem in the number of services it has to keep happy, particularly the Marines. The requirement for a vertical lift version seems to have doomed the F-35, definitely a design challenge too far. Its amazing really that the US is still in thrall to the obsession of the Marines with not being ditched by the Navy, which goes back to a few commanders arguing during the Guadalcanal campaign (or so its claimed).

        The obvious compromise is not to design a new aircraft, but to design unified systems (engines, control systems, radars etc.,) that can be used by a few different aircraft. When it comes down to it, a modern aircraft is basically quite a simple shell surrounding some very sophisticated mechanics and electrics.

        It does seem that the Chinese in particular seem reluctant to put all their eggs in one basket, instead having a few competing companies and agencies designing a few different aircraft, including one that looks suspiciously like the F-35.

        1. The Rev Kev

          Not surprising this as the Chinese stole the blueprints of the F-35. The story goes that when the Chinese engineers starting going through the plans, they had a good laugh at some of the features and ripped them out of their own design. Seems this was because the Chinese engineers were not under pressure by Congressmen to keep them in because of jawbs.

        2. Procopius

          According to what I’ve read, some of the required systems, or maybe sub-systems, e.g., the pilot’s custom-built helmet, had not even been designed when the contracts were let. It was a concept that would have warmed Rumsfeld’s heart, making it up as you go. This has been the procurement philosophy since the Clinton administration, and has worked as planned.

    8. Glen

      All major American corporations are managed to maximize CEO and managerial compensation. This pretty much means keep Wall St happy, and stay attached to the multi trillion dollar Fed printing press.

      All other considerations such as products that work are unimportant. Its not just the F-35, it’s everything.

  2. zagonostra

    >It’s time to confront the dark postscript to America’s role in defeating the Nazis CNN

    That is precisely why we must end the comforting but false narrative of living in a country with zero tolerance for Nazis…We must not only deport any remaining Nazis in our midst, but acknowledge the reason they got here in the first place.

    This is a very curious article coming from CNN. The timing is very suspect. Surely the alt-media world ecosystem denizens know all about “Paperclip” as will as Operation Gladio, Mockingbid, etc. Why is CNN delving into these topics at this juncture. Would it have anything to do with 1/6?

    What the article studiously avoids is naming the involvement of corporations that were instrumental in propping up the fascist Mussolini or Hitler’s Nazis. Mussolini was the first to grace the covers of Time Magazine. Ford was a supporter of Hitler. Also is avoided is how large companies rebuilt the Russia after the 1917 revolution. The first 5 year plan was made possible by American corporations. The only way, tragic as it was for millions, that the Soviet Union went from an agrarian feudal system to one with significant industrial capacity is because of American corporations (See Anthony Sutton for an eye-opening account).

    No, it’s not to inform the public that CNN has come out with this article. And although I speculate, there is another motive at play. CNN has lost all credibility with a significant section of the American public. This is an attempt to shore up that erosion. Or, and this might be a stretch, Trump followers are like the Nazis, they are in our mist and we have to “acknowledge the reason they got here in the first place.”

    1. David

      It’s “time” to try to get a few final clicks out of a story which has been well known and exhaustively covered for decades now, and where nothing is left to be discovered or revealed. In the process, of course, it plants the subliminal suggestion that today’s “Nazis” should maybe be interned or even expelled as well. (After all, a member of the SS who was 20 years old in 1945 will soon be a centenarian, so there’s not a lot more juice to be squeezed out of this lemon.) And who has ever said that the US has “zero tolerance” for Nazis, and where was it said and when?

      The whole article is hopelessly confused and confusing. The Paperclip story is well known, and involved a small number of scientists. I can imagine the argument that it would have been morally superior to enable them to be picked up and employed by the Soviet Union (as happened to others) but that’s a fragile base to build an argument around. And the refuge given to anti-Communist exiles after 1945 may have been disreputable, but it was because they were anti-Communists, not Nazis.

      More generally, the article doesn’t really seem to understand the wider picture. Nazi party membership peaked at about 8 million in 1945, and for many Germans membership was effectively compulsory, and didn’t mean very much. All branches of government, the military, the police and many others and many other parts of life required membership. A random selection of adult Germans (especially males) in 1945 might include perhaps one third who were party members.

      Finally, they could have employed an intern to read Wikipedia. The “20th Waffen Grenadier Division of the SS” was in fact the final form of one of the many auxiliary units that fought alongside, but was not part of, either the German Army or the Waffen (=Armed) SS. It was made up of Estonian anti-Communist volunteers, and apparently its members rejected the idea of wearing SS uniforms or being members of that organisation, which is why “SS” doesn’t figure in its name. In any case, the Waffen SS itself, though an exceptionally brutal organisation, was not responsible for “The Holocaust”, whether you take that to be a single process or a succession of different ones. That was the responsibility of the so-called General SS, and especially the Totenkopf or “Death’s Head” troops, who organised and ran concentration camps from 1933 onwards.

      It all seems very odd to me.

      1. Wukchumni

        (After all, a member of the SS who was 20 years old in 1945 will soon be a centenarian, so there’s not a lot more juice to be squeezed out of this lemon.)

        There’s a weird cottage industry in dealing with men who are my mom’s age, and had been living dangerously over deeds done nearly four score ago.

      2. Baby Gerald

        While it is commonly thought that Paperclip only involved scientists we were trying to keep from falling into Soviet hands, the reality is that we smuggled far more high-ranking Nazi officials than publicized. Reinhard Gehlen being a prime example.

        I suggest the book Blowback by Christopher Simpson for anyone interested in this. There are also a few interviews with the author on YT. This one is particularly good.

        At any rate, I totally agree with the opinion that the timing of this story feels strange. Spidey senses are tingling, to say the least.

        1. km

          There also were the aptly named “ratlines” that the United States and its minions turned a blind eye towards.

          Er, scratch that. I mean no ill will towards rats or any affiliated rodents by likening them to Nazis.

        2. Deltron

          Alexander Cockburn and Jeffrey St. Clair co-authored a book called Whiteout about the CIA’s complicity in the drug trade and the role of the press in keeping it under wraps. They devoted a chapter on how the U.S. ushered all sorts of Nazis (not just scientists) out of Germany and into the U.S. and Latin America for safe harbor. In particular, Klaus Barbie may have been the most despicable of all. Barbie was essentially a Nazi thug and bounty hunter, a butcher of Jews. After WWII, the CIA and Vatican smuggled him into South America where he became a CIA asset, ran death squads to kill political leaders that didn’t align with CIA objectives, and went on to establish drug cartels in South America. I highly recommend reading the book.

    2. Katniss Everdeen

      The “culture” needed an new “N” word that could be spoken without fear of retribution or de-Twittering. And the winner is….Nazi.

    3. pjay

      I was also shocked to see such an article at CNN. Like you, I immediately started wondering about motives. But the author, Lev Golinkin, is a sincere critic of US pseudo-history and anti-Russian propaganda. His family is from Eastern Ukraine. He wrote a nice tribute to Stephen Cohen as a voice in the wilderness in the Nation:

      That still doesn’t solve the mystery of why *CNN* chose to publish this piece. The Establishment does want to depict “Nazis” under every rock, so that may well be a factor. But it definitely does *not* want to expose how we weaponized these fascists during the Cold War and then used them against Russia in the post-Soviet era.

      Yasha Levine’s ‘Immigrants as a Weapon’ project is very good on this history.

      1. Darthbobber

        And the establishment certainly has no desire to call attention to the role of the collaborationist diaspora in backing current US-supported neofascists in Ukraine and the Baltics. Being anti-Russian covers a lot of sins.

    4. upstater

      While I agree the appearance of this piece now is puzzling, let it suffice to say the probably 95% of the US public is ignorant of the facts presented here. I can’t see how providing a history lesson can be harmful. Most Americans believe that it was the US that defeated Nazism and Hitler and have utterly no knowledge of the role played by the USSR. Perhaps understanding THAT history would undermine the Russia! meme.

      As David states there are few living WW2 Nazis left, and even fewer to deport. But there certainly are more than a few contemporary admirers of Nazism. History doesn’t repeat, but it sometimes rhymes.

    5. Pelham

      Perhaps CNN’s reluctance to explore US corporate collusion building up Nazi Germany, Mussolini’s Italy and the early Soviet Union has something to do with the eagerness of AT&T — CNN’s owner — to cater to our adversary/enemy China.

  3. timbers

    Dem fury at GOP…..”Democrats accuse Republicans of nothing short of sabotaging the nation’s democracy with false claims that November’s election was “stolen” from former President Trump.”…….And why shouldn’t Republicans try to steal back the election that Democrats stole from Trump 4 years prior with the illegal Obama spying on Trump & fake CIA news storm RussiaRussiaRussia? It’s only fair now. Democrats helped normalized that. If you can’t take the heat, get out of the kitchen.

    1. John

      It would be refreshing if our elected representatives and their supporters could rise above the playground taunts of “you did it first” and actually pay some small attention to the public interest (an outmoded concept to most). The level of discourse in the Congress is reaching levels of rancor and suspicion that compare to the 1850s. The level of disfunction and inattention to real needs is without precedent.

      1. timbers

        Agree, and that’s why I really do think Nancy&Co should think about filing a whole new round of impeachment charges against Trump. It’s been a distraction dream come true for them and besides…they failed to convict so he still can run again! And the was the point of Blue’s I talk to at work…preventing him running again. And listening to all those droaning, self-impressed speeches on NPR and outrage about the attack on Democracy.

        Right now, can’t think of a better to avoid governing and distracting the Blue’s.

        1. drumlin woodchuckles

          I think the Democrats want to make Trump a “martyr” while leaving him free to run again in 2024 because they still think that he would be their most beatable opponent in 2024. The Democrats are simply running a Pied Piper 2.0 Strategy with Trump as the Pied Piper.

          Second time’s a charm, I suppose.

  4. jackiebass

    I read the article saying more Americans say academics is the most important factor in reopening schools.Its amazing how quickly attitudes of the American public can change. Go back to last spring when the country was in effect locked down and schools were closed for in person instruction. The public overwhelmingly were praising schools and teachers. That was probably because parents were struck with the reality of caring for and helping educate their children. They supported how schools provided instruction.About a year later there seems to be a drastic change of attitude. The support is quickly disappearing. There is a campaign under way to blame unions and teachers for schools being closed. Academics is being used as the means to getting schools open. Safety of students and teachers is now not important. As a retired teacher I can honestly say the majority of parents don’t care about academics.I conclude this from my experience. When I taught I has around 120 students total in my 5 class. We had a parent conference night twice a year. I would get on average less than 10 parents request and show up for a conference. In a school year I would have less than 10 parents request I call them to discuss their child. Unfortunately too many parents look at schools as a convince. If you ask them if they are willing to pay more in taxes for their schools most say no. I know there are schools where what I say isn’t true, but they are in the minority. I taught in a small city school district in NYS. My brother in law taught in a rural school district in PA. His experience is the same as mine.

    1. a different chris

      > I would get on average less than 10 parents request and show up for a conference.

      Yep. But oh boy be the baseball coach and see how much attention you get.

    2. Charger01

      Back 320 days ago, most people freaked out and bunkered in their homes. They had some vague sense that a plan was being cooked up in DC, that would definitely solve “the crisis”. As the boys from Chapo gleefully pointed out, most of the powerful administrative were too busy selling each other MLM schemes to offer any real options to regular people. The economy tanked, people went hungry and lost their homes, and the stawks marched on. We are in bizarro land when we can believe that your bus/office/gym is potentially dangerous due to a biological crisis…..but 30 kids in a class with an unvaccinated teacher is perfectly safe.

      A clarifying moment as one Lambert often writes.

    3. curlydan

      And then there’s the Pew survey that gave people the choice between re-open now vs only re-open when all teachers have their requested vaccines.

      How about a third choice: only re-open when all teachers _and_ students have their requested vaccines?

      My son’s middle school just said “re-open” totally versus a hybrid schedule. Could we just wait a couple months to see if the counts actually can stay down?

      For the upper income parents, the attitude is “go take care of my kid for 8 hours a day”. For the lower income parents–from what I’ve heard and now seen in the Pew survey–it’s keep my kid at home and disease free, so I can go earn some money. Basically, if the poor child gets the poor parent sick, there will be NO money coming in the door, and the rent can’t get paid and the groceries can’t be bought.

  5. RabidGandhi

    Yesterday’s Ecuador article was really light on the basic facts and heavy on the “ooh a native is running”, so below is the 60-second RG summary of the situation on the ground:

    Ecuador has a 2-round voting system, where in the first round if a candidate does not get more than 50% of the vote or 40% + 10% than the nearest opponent, it goes to a second-round runoff between the top 2 candidates.

    The first round was held on last 7 February. In first place was Andrés Arauz, representing ex-president Rafael Correa’s centre-left Citizens Revolution Party (Correa was originally on the ballot as VP, but was disqualified on corruption charges that look very much trumped up) with 33%.

    The crucial race for second place was a virtual tie between former Coca Cola executive Guillermo Lasso and native rights activist/lawyer “Yaku” Pérez, with Lasso outpacing Pérez by less than 1%.

    (Aside: Arauz and Pérez both have centre left platforms: renounce IMF debt, universal basic income, undo privatisations, with Arauz heavier on development and Pérez stressing environmentalism, whereas Lasso proposes having the whole country baseline neoliberalism.)

    Two major events have happened since the 1st round results were announced: first, Pérez has cried fraud and asked for a recount, which Lasso initially agreed to. The National Electoral Commission (CNE), however, reviewed the technical report on the ballots in question and ruled there were no merits for the recount. That’s when things got sticky. Pérez led a march of the indigenous rights umbrella group (CONAIE) to CNE headquarters in civil protest against the decision not to recount. History fans will recall that in 2005, CONAIE held a similar march that led to the fall of president Lucio Gutiérrez. So on one hand, this civil unrest could certainly blow up into something bigger. Meanwhile, 1st round winner Arauz’ supporters are accusing Yaku Perez of, basically, being a Juan Guaidó-like tool trying to disrupt the inevitable coronation of Arauz. Here it should be recalled that Rafael Correa’s governments, as opposed to say those of Evo Morales in Bolivia, were generally opposed by the indigenous organizations, and in the last election Pérez called to vote for Lasso and against Citizens Revolution. So it must be borne in mind: Arauz won the first round handily, but he only has 33% and would need at least some help from the indigenous groups not to lose in the second round.

    Second: the far-right wing Colombian magazine Semana published a video that purports to show Arauz receiving from USD 80.000 (!) from the Colombian rebel group ELN. Arauz claims to have evidence that the video was not filmed in Colombia as claimed (based on an orinthologist showing that the wrong birds are singing in the background). As the Arauz camp cried US/OAS intervention, the Colombian prosecutor travelled to Ecuador to present the “evidence” to his Ecuadorean counterpart Diana Salazar, clearly with hopes of sullying the election. The prosecutor’s office then took the extraordinary (unconstitutional) step of barging into the National Election Commission and seizing the election databases to do their own recount assessment. Three days later, Salazar was given an award by the US State Dept for her “fight against corruption”.

    So anyhoo, I would just bear in mind that with the recent surge in democracy in Latin America over the last couple of decades, the right’s motto has been “Our Brand Is Crisis” as any spanner they can throw into the institutional works generally benefits them. Also, Ecuador in particular is especially resistant to identity politics simplifications and generalising narratives of lefty good guys vs righty bad guys.

    1. PlutoniumKun

      Thanks for this overview, its very difficult to make any sense of what’s happening in those countries from mainstream sources.

    2. lyman alpha blob

      Great summary that answered a question of mine. Yesterday’s links had this “Ecuador inches closer to an indigenous president FT”. They touted this as a good thing, which I found very odd since mainstream corporate sources generally are not in favor of the indigenous in South America getting anywhere near power.

      From your comment –

      …in the last election Pérez called to vote for Lasso and against Citizens Revolution.

      – now I see why the FT took that position. They want the neoliberal, not the guy who might follow in Correa’s footsteps. If Arauz manages to win the general, hopefully he won’t pull a Moreno afterwards and do a 180 turn from what he campaigned on.

      1. RabidGandhi

        Sorry l.a.b., read above.

        FT did a puff piece on Yaku Pérez, but Pérez is not proposing a neoliberal platform the way his closest competitor Lasso is. In fact, Pérez gained his national prominence decrying the neoliberalism of current president Lenín Moreno, although his positions have been somewhat erratic.

        What FT may like about him is that he is die-hard anti-Correa. Correa’s govt cancelled his French wife’s visa, purportedly over corruption she revealed. What the Ecuadorian oligarchs fear most is a return to Correa’s brand of economics.

        1. lyman alpha blob

          Thanks for the response. I didn’t mean to imply that Perez was the neolib here, just suggesting that the FT’s seeming support of Perez is because Perez supports Lasso over Arauz.

          What I’m not understanding then is why Perez, if he can’t win himself, would prefer the neoliberals to Correa’s party.

            1. lyman alpha blob

              Thanks for that. So Perez is in with the US spooks. Did a quick search of Yaku Perez and USAID just for the heck of it and came up with this –

              And here’s another one quoting from an interview with Correa who claims Perez isn’t even indigenous, although it doesn’t say on what basis –


              “Who told you Yaku Perez is a leftist candidate,” Correa retorted to AFP. “He’s the far right candidate.

              “Look how he supported the coup d’etat against Evo Morales, he congratulated (Jeanine) Anez.”

              Morales stood for and won re-election to an unconstitutional fourth term as Bolivia president in October 2019 in a vote an Organization of American States audit found to be fraudulent.

              Following three weeks of street protests, Morales resigned and fled into exile, to be replaced by then-Senate deputy Anez, who was the highest ranking government official not to have resigned at that time.

              “Yaku Perez is not leftist, please, neither is he indigenous. It’s all a sham. Yaku Perez is a great big farce. He’s supported by the US embassy.”

  6. Darthbobber

    The Pew survey on school reopening.

    While it breaks it’s respondents down by race and income, it doesn’t breakout whether respondents do or do not have school age children, which seems like useful info given the issue.

    1. chuck roast

      Maybe getting right answer would be the wrong thing to do. Think of all the surveys coming up for the next election cycle. Getting the wrong answer this early in the cycle could put the kibosh on all of those lucrative future contracts where getting the right answer beforehand is an absolute requirement.

  7. Katniss Everdeen

    RE: Scott Ferguson tweet

    …A college education is not vocational training; it’s meant to transform students into well-rounded critical thinkers, communicators & community members

    Another shell-shocked soldier emerges from the jungle after 50 years to find that the world is not the same as he left it.

    1. lyman alpha blob

      That NYT piece is unintentionally hilarious.

      Here’s their rubric for teaching media literacy:

      1. Stop.

      2. Investigate the source.

      3. Find better coverage.

      4. Trace claims, quotes and media to the original context

      Since the NYT loves the anonymous sources, gave us Judith Miller’s compromised WMD reporting, and regaled us with RussiaRussiaRussia ninsense for years, following the NYT’s own prescriptions would inevitably lead one to stop reading the NYT.

      1. jr

        Exactly, the NYT melts under even this tepid scrutiny. They are serenely unaware of their own vulnerabilities, or worse they just don’t care. Maybe it’s all just about personal branding and self-marketing or whatever.

  8. The Rev Kev

    “President Biden signed an executive order on U.S. supply chains.”

    So what is he going to do next? Commission a task force? Bringing back supply chains back to the US sounds good but it is going to take a major restructuring of the American economy to do it. First thing is to have an industrial policy so you know what you are trying to do. Then change the tax laws so that corporations are punished and not rewarded for moving production overseas. Then you are going to have to build the tools of manufacture as so much was packed up and shipped overseas. Then you are going to have to train a brand new work force to do what their father’s generation use to build. But as that older generation are mostly long retired, forgotten those work methods and techniques, or are just dead, that is going to make it hard. Then you have to set up technical training so that the new generation learn the skills.

    And then you have to pay them decent if not good wages to attract them and not just pay them McWages. Then you are going to need a leadership cadre who spends more time building up capacity rather than stripping value from this effort while awarding themselves massive bonuses that they got from cutting wage. And then again, the US has a lot of catching up to do. Take computer chip manufacturing. The US just can’t go out and buy technical knowledge to lead the world, no matter how hard the printing presses go brrrrrr. You are looking at a decades long effort to accomplish this. You think Wall Street will allow any of this to happen? (crickets) I thought not.

    And here’s to Yves getting back on the mend and on top of things. All things do pass. I literally have no idea what she is talking about when she says that we are on short rations on original posts as the number of links today is both lengthy and broad.

      1. Ping

        I relate to your elder-care experience Yves, a consuming responsibility on it’s own without other obstacles. Sending best wishes of care and comfort.

    1. Ping

      The results of exporting the nation’s manufacturing has been evident for decades and resulting decimation of living wage income has given rise to populist movements. Not being able to provide enough simple items like cotton on sticks when Covid hit is emblematic.

      Yes a major restructuring is required including massive support for vocational education for a new generation workforce and a tax structure that makes domestic manufacturing extremely attractive. Being unable to adequately produce essentials domestically is decades in the making with rotten trade deals, the decimation of public education and extravagant cost of higher education.

      1. drumlin woodchuckles

        And the Free Trade based and sheltered permission for foreign-based production export platformers to work the differential cost arbitrage rackets against their American targets every single time.

        None of the rest of this will work until Free Trade is abolished.

  9. Katniss Everdeen

    RE: Ex-Capitol security chiefs say they didn’t receive FBI memo warning of Jan. 6 “war” Axios.

    It’s a good thing biden brought two giant dogs to the white house with him. I suspect there will be a shitload of homework to be eaten over the next several years.

    PS. In case anyone was wondering about Tuesday’s state of the union address that wasn’t, jen psaki has no idea where that “fake news” came from.

    “We don’t know where the Feb. 23 date came from. It’s a great mystery,” she said during the regular daily briefing.

    “I’ve not Nancy Drewed that one out today, but it was never planned to be in February, and we don’t have a date for a joint session at this point,” Psaki said, comparing herself to the popular character in a series of children’s books who solves mysteries.

    However, the president himself used a prime-time address last month to suggest otherwise.

    “Next month, in my first appearance before a joint session of Congress, I will lay out my ‘Build Back Better’ recovery plan,” he said. “It will make historic investments in infrastructure, manufacturing, innovation, and research and development in clean energy.”

    New presidents generally outline their plans to a joint session early in their first year. In later years, it is known as a State of the Union address.

    1. tegnost

      I can understand why the dogs who caught the car need more time to write the big speech. It’s got to be really hard to write a speech pitching their big plans when their big plans are good for no one but themselves. By the way I just randomly clicked through the google for dates of SoU’s and all the one’s I checked were in january.

    2. cocomaan

      I really did not think the Biden Administration’s collapse due to its own incompetence would be so swift. I guess I should have set my expectations lower!

      Schrodinger’s state of the union.

      1. Dr. John Carpenter

        I figured they’d at least last long enough to set up Kamala’s reign but at the rate they’re going, she may be the next Pence.

    3. Cat Burglar

      I am waiting for testimony from Yogananda Pittman, the intelligence chief of the Capitol Police at the time of the attack.

      According to the ProPublica article linked here a few days ago, the failure to inform the force of the warnings from the FBI and other sources was the failure of the Police intelligence group.

      Funny that Pittman was promoted to Chief after Sund resigned, almost like being rewarded for something.

  10. marym

    Arizona forensic audit of Maricopa county election equipment 02/23/2021

    Media report: (Link)

    Maricopa County said Tuesday that its election equipment and software passed all tests done during audits by two independent firms.

    “We are releasing the results of those audits today so that the public can see what we see and know what we know: no hacking or vote switching occurred in the 2020 election,” Maricopa County Board of Supervisors Chairman Jack Sellers said in a press release.

    “With the completion of these two independent audits, in addition to the hand count audit completed by the political parties and accuracy tests before and after the election, we have an opportunity as a community to work from a shared set of facts,” Supervisor Bill Gates said in the release.

    Summary: (Link)
    Overview and results with links to audit reports: (Link)

    1. Jim Hannan

      The post election news from Maricopa County (Phoenix, etc.) has been stunning. The Arizona state legislature tried to hold in contempt and possibly put in jail the five county commissioners for not turning over all the election machines, ballots, etc. The motion failed because one Republican senator voted against. Four of five county commissioners are Republicans.

      1. marym

        Thanks for the link. Another in the series: Trump and his allies got people all riled up by making unfounded claims, so now Republicans say they have to take extreme steps “just trying to boost voter confidence in elections.” !!

    2. lyman alpha blob

      There are still some things I would question. From your first link:

      “The firms we hired are the only two in the United States certified to do this work. We asked them to go beyond what we had already done to ensure the integrity of our elections and beyond even the stringent requirements of state law.”

      From the 2nd link:

      Selected Audit Firms

      The Elections Department selected Pro V&V and SLI Compliance to perform these two portions of the forensic audit because they were independent of the County. Both laboratories are also certified by the U.S. EAC and with a combined 29 years of experience in testing and certifying voting equipment [sic]. These are the only firms we believed possessed the knowledge and expertise to perform this very detailed and technical analysis to determine that the voting equipment and system were correctly configured and did not possess any vulnerabilities.

      So which is it? Are these the only two firms, or the only ones the county thought were OK? To me that makes a big difference.

      Also, I would like to know if these two firms that have been certifying voting equipment for a combined 29 years have certified any of the equipment that has repeatedly been shown to be easily hackable by computer science undergrads in a very short period of time.

      Not asking you personally marym, and I do very much like seeing this info. I also saw your post about wanting to verify that the machines work because you don’t believe the US will adopt paper ballots hand counted in public. I don’t think the US will adopt that policy either, but I also don’t believe that’s a reason to start trusting these machines.

      The test I’d really like to see is one of the machines used in the election in the same room as one of these computer science students. If they can’t change the vote tally, I would have a lot more confidence. Otherwise, if the machines can be hacked, they will be hacked and likely already have been many times.

      1. marym

        I took “EAC certified” as one of the reasons they believed them to be the only ones with the necessary knowledge and expertise.

        I have barely enough tech knowledge (in a totally different world) to get the point some of the audit tasks. It’s way beyond my ability to have an informed opinion on whether they’re testing the right things, or testing them adequately; or how well the documents provide enough information to assess this. I’m hoping for more comments by people who know more. I will opine that this seemed to me to be an audit more geared toward whether the system had been hacked than whether it’s hackable.

        I also saw your post about being interested in what Lindell (pillow guy) had to say. This link is from Dominion’s perspective, but they go through a critique of his film that he claimed showed the evidence (though he also claims to have other evidence), and also of the credentials and findings of some of the people he claims as experts.

        I don’t think we should trust the machines or any other parts of the process. I think vulnerabilities need to be accurately identified and mitigated. My objection is to the still-on-going and counter-productive unsubsantiatedfraudgate occurring in the political arena.

  11. Eureka Springs

    I love it, a concern poll.

    Fascinating look at the top concerns for Democratic voters:

    Anyway, looks to me like the one redeeming quality is the most concern- orange and yellow combined, is about health coverage (ha!), not that ex president. He really grabbed Dems by the pink hat and they protest but never let him go.

    1. flora

      Keeping the ‘concern’ away from economic issues is a win for Wall St. ;)

      NYT and WaPo for the past 10 years, ever since the Occupy Wall St movement, increased stories about race instead of stories about the economic conditions of the 99%. (Very few mentions about the destruction of Black wealth in the the wake of the 2008-9 subprime crisis and GFC.) I wonder if NYT and WaPo were trying to change the subject away from falling economic conditions for the 99% – especially after the great financial crisis ? Just look at the charts in this 2020 Tablet article. Check the date on the charts when the story language started changing, in 2011-2012 during and after Occupy Wall Street. /heh

      The chart in Greenwald’s comment isn’t too surprising given the past 10 years of elite acceptable discourse.

    2. Lars

      “…looks to me like the one redeeming quality is the most concern- orange and yellow combined, is about health coverage”
      Another redeeming quality is that a combined 65% are extremely or somewhat concerned about capitalism. I hope that trend continues.

  12. PlutoniumKun

    A Reply to Perry Anderson on Europe Denis McShane (guurst). Quite the takedown on a number of important points.

    Thanks for this. Andersons essay got a wide reading, but it seemed to me to be full of half truths and very dubious interpretations of history. There are plenty of reasons to dislike the direction the EU has taken without simply making up stuff.

    Its unfortunate I think that Andersons views are quite widely shared with a significant section of the Anglophone left wing and that article seemed designed to promulgate some dubious narratives which are simply not backed up by the historical record. Doubly unfortunately, some in the UK left in particular has bought into a number of the same misconceptions that have afflicted the right wing. I wonder if that LRB article had any degree of factchecking.

    1. David

      Up to a point, and where McShane is discussing recent history he has some cred, although it’s important to remember that he’s partly defending the actions of a government of which he was a member.

      But there are a couple of points where I think he misrepresents history himself. Britain was always opposed to ideas for European political unity since they were first put forward in the 1930s, because the British feared being swallowed up in a group of nations with very different political traditions. So the attitude after WW2 was essentially a continuation of the status quo, with the added advantage that NATO (which, don’t forget, the British invented) would bring the US in, and Britain with its Empire would be an equal partner to the US militarily, as well as a dominant partner intellectually and politically. It wasn’t clear in London what advantages Europe had that could match this. Suez was certainly a shock, but not in the way McShane thinks. It galvanised the UK to seek a closer relationship with the US to avoid ever being betrayed again, whilst progressively giving up their Empire to concentrate more and more on NATO and the US link. Everything they have done since the 1960s has been consistent with this strategy.

      Where does the Left fit into this? Well, don’t forget either that the EU in its earliest incarnations was not a project of the Left, but of the reformist Catholic Right that emerged from the discrediting of the Catholic Church after WW2. Its historical models were actually the Church and the Holy Roman Empire, and its social policies were based essentially on a kind of religious noblesse oblige. Together with the involvement of industrialists and banks in the formation of the first European institutions, this produced a profound suspicion within the Labour Party in the UK, which was actually shared by parts of the European Left also. Again, the push for UK entry came from business and the City in the 1960s, worried about declining economic status of the UK and being overtaken by Italy (seems hilarious now), and looking for new markets. Labour, as I remember from the time, thought the EC was a Rich Mans’ Club. It was only after Thatcher started rubbishing the EC that Labour began to rally to its defence.

      So it’s a mistake to see this as a Left-Right issue. From the earliest days, Europe was an elitist, supranational, post-nationalist, paternalistic and technocratic project, which aimed at abolishing nations (and even national cultures) because they incited conflict, and placing as much power as possible in the hands of an international technocratic priesthood, who could not be swayed by the charms of dictators and populists. (These were not wicked people: they believed that these were the measures required to bring peace to Europe). This is why Blair, for example, was so keen on Europe. This is why also opposition has always come from across the political spectrum: De Gaulle and Mitterrand were both as sceptical as the British Labour Party originally was.

      1. upstater

        Very interesting comment on the genesis of the EU. A high international technocratic priesthood seems spot on…

    2. Pelham

      I read Anderson’s lengthy EU takedown but haven’t yet read the rebuttal. However, I spent most of the 1980s in Brussels as a journalist and was struck by the visceral hatred of the EU expressed by the ordinary Belgians I knew. It seemed to be unanimous.

      I never explored the subject with them to any significant degree, so I don’t know what their gripes were and they never volunteered much in the way of specifics. But I did note that press coverage of the EU was comparatively scant and the substance often mystifying — an obscurity that I have since come to think was intended.

    3. VietnamVet

      It is interesting that the veneer of the free trade new world order which the EU is part was conceived by Austrian/Hungarian intellectuals after the collapse of the Empire in WWI.

      The strangest picture coming out of January 6th is Globalists calling the Capitol the Peoples House. Insurrectionists were fighting to keep the sitting President. Donald Trump lost because the whole Western Establishment supported Joe Biden. Who immediately then sent an Army Brigade back into Syria and is now bombing Shiite militias in Iraq.

      If history rhymes, maybe Joe Biden and Franz Joseph are performing off of the same script.

      1. vlade

        Well, no?

        The EU was fundamentaly set up to break the wars that plagued Europe for literally millenia. It may well be the first time ever when almost all people born post WW2 in Europe went on living a life and dying of a ripe old age without exeperiencing a war.

        The trade was seen as one of the items, but definitely not THE key one, because of the lessons of WW1, where too many people assumed that there can’t be a serious (or indeed, any) war in Europe ever again because the economic costs (of the lost trade) to the European countries would be way too much, for likely trivial gains. That didn’t rule out wars, but assume proxy ones and colonial ones only, not in Europe.

        It was only under the “leadership” of the UK, more specifically Thatcher, where the whole concept of single market and the EU as a trade bloc started to take shape, and it was the main thing that the UK was driving ever since.

        Arguably, the single-market was the largest ever Thatcher’s achievement.

  13. t

    “This isn’t to say surface transmission isn’t possible and that it doesn’t pose a risk in certain situations, or that we should disregard it completely. But, we should acknowledge the threat surface transmission poses is relatively small.”

    Hospitals, nursing homes, day care, etc. etc. Have decades of research on cleaning surfaces and it turns out its a great idea. Turns out not washing hands and not cleaning surfaces increases the rate of transmission of all kinds of things, including the flu which is an airborne virus.

    This urge to have the one true thing, and to be they guy who has babbled about that one true thing, rather than a coherent policy, is the worst.

    See also double masks. Instead of restating how masks should fit and how they work, just tell people to add another one and not a word about people wandering around with the nose uncovered or taking their masks off to cough.

    Take a moment to pity healthcare providers who now how to restate the things they were saying on day one (basic hygiene,, social distancing, masks) to people who are even more confused.

    1. Cuibono

      can you pllease head up the CDC. seriously, this is more sound than 99% of the BS they continue to spout

  14. The Rev Kev

    “Sheryl Sandberg and Top Facebook Execs Silenced an Enemy of Turkey to Prevent a Hit to the Company’s Business”

    Nothing surprises me about what Facebook will do and I just read an example of this today. So a few years ago the UK’s BBC gave Facebook a heads up that their servers were hosting kiddie porn but Facebook only removed a fraction of them. The BBC pressed them further and arranged an interview so Facebook requested copies of those images. When the BBC did so, Facebook cancelled the interview and reported the BBC to police for distributing those images over the internet. Images that were still sitting and being used from Facebook’s servers. The police did not fall for this one and the BBC was most unamused. Facebook is beyond redemption.

  15. John

    The Iran nuclear deal: What is there to study? Rejoin or forget it. Iran is not, repeat not, going to change its position. There is nothing to negotiate concerning this agreement. Saudi and the UAE and their partner Israel want to muscle in to scotch it completely. This has always been clear. Reverse Trump’s decision or step aside. In like manner pull out of Iraq and Afghanistan or stay: stop the rhetorical dithering. Twenty year wars never end well for anyone. Neither do 30-year wars: look at 1618-1648 and 1914-1945. Ask yourself if the USA has the world it wanted; the fruits of victory envisioned in 1945. Things have not been uniformly bad, but taking the long view are we better or worse off 75 years later.

    Being a hegemon means most of all that you are a clear target for all others.

    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      Orientlaism is the guiding light of US foreign policy. Biden likely believes that being able to rub shoulders with Americans (that soul of a nation is representative of a deep seated rotten view of America as Dog’s Chosen People) is all Iranians need. Hence the US is offering the greatest concession of all, the chance to download Obama and Springstein’s podcast of dullness.

  16. PlutoniumKun

    China’s Shale Boom Was Over Before It Began OilPrice

    I suspect one of the main problems with shale gas in China is water, or to be precise, the lack of it. Fracking requires huge quantities of water, and coal extraction and treatment is already causing major strains in many inland areas. And the shale is often in more arid inland areas in China.

    There seem to be a number of mysteries about shale gas extraction that aren’t widely published – there is a lot of proprietary knowledge kept tight by the industry. The shale industry in Poland stopped dead as they couldn’t seem to get any gas out of what appeared to be very promising geology. Similar problems seem to have emerged in Argentina. Its hard to know with China, but the country certainly has vast amounts of gas bearing shale, but getting the gas out is often easier said than done.

    It may be that the major US oil and gas bearing shales simply have a ‘sweet spot’ that nobody else has. Or it could be that it requires a lot more skill and on the ground knowledge that only exists in the US. One driller described shale gas extraction to me as more of an art than a science. But whatever the reason, its probably pretty good news for the planet that nobody else seems to be about the get the fracking bug.

  17. Katniss Everdeen

    RE: Greenwald tweet

    Of issues we asked ONLY of Democrats, their biggest concern is Donald Trump’s supporters.

    What, exactly does that even mean????

    It sounds like a preemptive “defense” for when a TDS sufferer mistakes a cell phone or ballpoint pen held by a Trump supporter for a “lethal weapon” and goes postal on him or her.

    “It was justified, yer honor. They tried to kill aoc and pence, everybody knows it, and I feared for my LIFE.”

    1. lordkoos

      I don’t consider myself a Democrat, but I live in Trump country and I worry about his supporters too, and it has nothing to do with what happened in DC. Locally, his supporters have harassed peaceful BLM demonstrations, distributed “wanted” posters threatening our city council, and are rabidly against common-sense public health measures, which many of them still refuse to follow. They are also well-armed and enjoy reminding people of that fact.

      While I’m sure the MSM has ginned up a lot of fear (hey it’s their job) with their coverage of the capitol riot, people do have legitimate concerns when it comes to the more extreme Trump supporters.

    1. jackiebass

      I do a lot of fishing and old fish do take the bait. I’ve caught old fish with hooks in their mouth. With catch and release fish have a better chance of getting old.

      1. PlutoniumKun

        Maybe there are even older fish out there than the ones you catch who are laughing at your silly hooks and bait.

      2. Lee

        Some of the best fishing but not catching experiences I’ve had is in Yellowstone catch-and-release areas, watching very large cutthroat trout rise to a fly, study it intently, then with a flick of the tail disappear into the deep water.

        1. Wukchumni

          Last year, we just celebrated the 25th anniversary of the reintroduction of wolves into Yellowstone. 2020 was a great pup year. Our wolf population grew to about 123 animals. You know, that’s a fantastic success story. I think that’s a stable population. Got a phenomenal team that has worked on wolves for decades. And, you know, they are helping us determine what types of decisions do we need to make to protect not only wolves, but all the peripheral positive benefits of wolves.

          Sholly: Well, I did 200 miles in the backcountry last summer. On foot. I did some on a horse, but I did a lot of it on foot. Did a lot of day trips. Did Electric Peak with my son. Went way up into Lamar River, the Lamar River Trail down to Chalcedony Creek and some other places. Went to the Thorofare twice. And, you know, it’s the real park. I mean, we’ve got a lot of challenge. Ninety-nine percent of our challenges, if not more, are within 7 percent of the road corridor in the developed areas in the park. And yeah, that 7 percent deserves attention. Once — and I did count this — once I got a mile off the road, I counted nine people. In 200 miles in the backcountry. And so, you know, the vast majority of this park doesn’t see a visitor. I really encourage people to get out in the backcountry more.

          1. Lee

            Critter watching, particularly from roadside pullouts affording views of broad expanses such as are afforded in Lamar Valley, is quite rewarding. Bison, bears, wolves, elk, et al are habituated to humans confined to roads and therefore ignore them. Hiking away from roads certainly has its rewards, but the wildlife tend to get spooked and make themselves scarce when humans take to the trails. Having watched grizzly bears ply their predatory trade, and knowing that they do not much fear people, has made me a cautious hiker in their territory.

            1. lordkoos

              Maybe carry some bear repellent spray with you? I hike in the summer pretty often especially during huckleberry season and there is evidence of bear around, we also have a cougar population, but I rarely see them.

  18. The Rev Kev

    “Cracking Austin”

    Sounds really bad if you live in Austin as the politicians are gerrymandering the region but hard so that they cannot be ever voted out and can sell out their voters with no consequence to them at all. Seems that the only way that you can get rid of them is to have them take a tour of their district in an open top car. And as they slowly drive through downtown, point out to them the old book depository coming up to them on the right…

  19. fresno dan

    Patel’s work on the House Intelligence Committee, under the leadership of its former Republican chairman, Devin Nunes, is widely credited with exposing the FBI’s reliance on Steele and misrepresentations to the FISA court. Yet congressional Democrats and major media outlets portrayed him as a behind-the-scenes saboteur who sought to “discredit” the Russia investigation.

    Patel did not suggest that a game-changing smoking gun is being kept from the public. Core intelligence failures have been exposed – especially regarding the FBI’s reliance on Christopher Steele’s now debunked dossier to secure FISA warrants used to surveil Trump campaign adviser Carter Page. But he said the withheld material would reveal more misconduct as well as major problems with the CIA’s assessment that Russia, on Vladimir Putin’s orders, ordered a sweeping and systematic interference 2016 campaign to elect Trump
    Rep. Devin Nunes: Patel said he went to work for the California Republican with a condition: optimal disclosure.
    The media vitriol unnerved Patel, who had previously served as a national security official in the Obama-era Justice Department and Pentagon – a tenure that exceeds his time working under Trump. Patel says that ensuring public disclosure of critical information in such a consequential national security investigation motivated him to take the job in the first place.

    For Patel, a key document that remains hidden from the public is the full report he helped prepare and which Trump chose not to declassify after pressure from the intelligence community: The House Intelligence Committee report about the January 2017 Intelligence Community Assessment (ICA).

    The ICA is a foundational Russiagate document. Released just two weeks before Trump’s inauguration, it asserted that Russia waged an interference campaign to help defeat Hillary Clinton. Despite widespread media accounts that the ICA reflected the consensus view of all 17 U.S. intelligence agencies, it was a rushed job completed in a few weeks by a small group of CIA analysts led by then-CIA Director John Brennan, who merely consulted with FBI and NSA counterparts. The NSA even dissented from a key judgment that Russia and Putin specifically aimed to help install Trump, expressing only “moderate confidence.”

    The March 2018 House report found that the production of the ICA “deviated from established CIA practice.” And the core judgment that Putin sought to help Trump, the House report found, resulted from “significant intelligence tradecraft failings that undermine confidence in the ICA judgments.”
    Hard NOT to come to the conclusion that the whole point of the United States is to serve, defend, and advance the interests of the CIA…
    And it kinda puts a lie to the idea that Trump is a bull in a China shop regarding the deep state – when push comes to shove he folds like a cheap card table. Or perhaps Trump is a realist enough to take to heart Chuck Schumer’s quote “Let me tell you, you take on the intelligence community, they have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you,”

    1. pjay

      This is a very good update and summation by Aaron Mate. If any Nazi-fearing family, friends, and colleagues want to know what a *real* “coup” attempt looks like (albeit a “soft” one), I suggest that they study the details of Russiagate. They won’t, of course. And I don’t foresee a “9/11-type commission” on this in the future, either.

      1. pjay

        Well, actually there was a “9/11-type” investigation: the Mueller Report. The Rooskies did it. I forgot.

    2. chuck roast

      The 2017 ICA will go down as one of the seminal documents when the history of American decline is written. I encouraged all my friends to read it. I go, “Hey, it’s only around 18 pages. It’s not gonna’ hurt your head.” Ten pages of why RT is the most dangerous propaganda organ since the publishing of Mein Kampf, and eight pages of guess work, probablys, maybes, we all knows and the like. My friends, in this case, seemed to have a serious reluctance for the official written word. And why the hell is that commie roast recommending that we read it anyway? Heaven forbid that their cherished liberal certainties get undermined. It was so much easier watching fart-breath Maddow’s fulminations. We’re doomed.

  20. Gregorio

    “Once in a lifetime dolphin stampede.” Maybe once in a lifetime for someone who rarely spends time on the ocean, but actually a quite common occurrence .

  21. antidlc

    Texas’s deregulated electricity market raised consumer costs by $28B: WSJ The Hill (Kevin W). Note this does not include the cost after the deep freeze.

    Note this also does not include the time tax required to build spreadsheets to compare different plans.

    You have to look at the electricity facts label for each plan, how much you pay for each tier, plus any other charges. And this analysis assumes your usage for the upcoming year will be similar to last year’s usage.

    Kind of like buying a Medicare part D plan where you price out drugs you are currently on, hoping the next year you don’t have any new drugs you need to take — drugs that aren’t in the formulary, or fall in the most expensive tier.

    My motto: “consumer choice” = “time tax”.

    It’s all intentionally confusing so you pick the wrong (i.e., more expensive) plan.

  22. The Rev Kev

    “China’s Shale Boom Was Over Before It Began”

    I guess that the Chinese will have to work out some other way of poisoning their water table then.

    1. ForeignNational(ist)

      Eh, I’m pretty sure they’ve figured that out already (several times over). The environment in China often leaves things to be desired. Speaking of water tables in China, I recall reading a National Geographic article many years ago about how overusage has pulled the water table in some places in China quite low.

  23. jr

    Feel better soon, Yves.

    RE: Holes in holes at the NYT

    “ For an academic, Michael Caulfield has an odd request: Stop overthinking what you see online.”

    Will do, starting with this article.

    “That alone makes information warfare an unfair fight for the average internet user. But Mr. Caulfield argues that the deck is stacked even further against us.”

    Good to know that the chirpy establishment mouthpiece who scrabbled this article together and I are on the same team. Comfort, that.

    “That the way we’re taught from a young age to evaluate and think critically about information is fundamentally flawed and out of step with the chaos of the current internet.”

    What “way” is he referring to here? The first time most people hear of critical thinking is when they aim low for their undergraduate philosophy class requirement. He’s unwittingly pointing to a deeper problem: a broader lack of critical education. The author does manage to question whether kids get critical thinking training “….at all.” but something tells me he’ll fly off track soon enough.

    And here we go: we are told it’s “counterproductive” to closely analyze content from an “unknown source” because “false information.” That’s the whole mother-F’ing reason to analyze unknown sources!! To determine if they have validity! “Lateral reading” sounds fine but there is absolutely no reason to choke back on a forward reading, do both! That’s critical thinking. You don’t have to be a professional researcher to take a few hours a week to dig into a news story.

    Anytime anyone recommends collapsing an entire dimension of any sort of intellectual inquiry to protect sensitive minds, I reach for my cookie gun. It’s as if the researcher, and the author, thinks that by simply “going down the rabbit hole” one will become ensorcelled, as if by reading Stormfront too often one will find oneself buying Wehrmacht insignia at collector’s shows. Because they are so “much better” at brainwashing people than you. You’ll become “overwhelmed”. Like as in alien brain parasite overwhelmed? What are these clowns talking about?

    See, goes on Caulfield, we are in an “attention crisis”. So, put down the phone and pick up a book, right? Develop the strength of your attention, right professor? Nope. We have to avoid looking too closely at unknown information. Be alert for “bad actors”. But how are we to know who the “bad actors” are? Not via critical thinking but rather spending our attention-time “wisely” on accepted sources. So, the “way” we are taught to read the news critically makes us susceptible to disinformation; the answer is to avoid new sources and uncritically accept mainstream ones.. Here’s a better idea. Let’s turn SIFT around on the NYT, see what floats up from the mucky bottom. Take 30, 60, 90 seconds to find out what lies are being peddled wholesale today. Help the “casual” news reader to figure out they are being lied to 24/7. You don’t even need “unknown” sources to do it. Just look at some of the recent self-owns: Caliphate, Russiagate, etc. It must be ok to use a trusted source like the NYT to debunk the NYT, right? Guys?

    I won’t even get into the notion of the “natural human mind-set” these two bumblers swing around like drunks fighting over a shotgun.

    The article continues to argue for better critical thinking via less thinking. Pop over to Wiki to save the time trying to develop your own context. Google, although imperfect it’s noted, tends to provide the “best” information at the top of the list so no need to read down. There is a handy course unit, for sale I assume, and it’s not “precious” about using academic, reviewed sources. The emphasis is on efficiency, not quality of instruction, on developing an uncritical “reflex” to skip over information that doesn’t align with the consensus. In short, critical thinking is hard work, should start early in one’s education, and for that matter requires a solid educational foundation in the first place. None of those issues are discussed, instead we get the “Cliff Notes” version of that, the app.

    Then there is this pathetic display:

    “As a journalist who can be a bit of a snob about research methods, it makes me anxious to type this advice……it seems that snobs like me have it backward.”

    A “bit of a snob” about research methods? Not “serious” about? Perhaps “concerned” about? This guy is a writer? For a living? He either is clueless as to what message language like that sends or he knows full well. Either way, it’s sad. But then, the NYT is sad. It’s too bad his colleagues aren’t as selective as he is, perhaps they could have avoided the string of embarrassments they’ve suffered as of late. Or maybe they have no shame.

    1. flora

      shorter NYT: ‘Don’t worry your pretty head with critical thinking; leave the thinking to us. We at the NYTimes are authorities on ‘truth’ and ‘fact’. (Is that what the term ‘authoritarian ritualized discourse’ means? / ;) )

  24. lyman alpha blob

    RE: Cutting down forests: what are the drivers of deforestation?

    No mention of the gigantic elephant in the room which is gross human overpopulation. You can focus on the beef and soy supply chains all you want, but that is just rearranging deck chairs and it won’t do a damned thing until we reduce population.

    1. Bruno

      “…that is just rearranging deck chairs and it won’t do a damned thing until we reduce population.”
      Great idea that. But how do you expect to get it done? And over what time frame (especially with comparison to the rate of increasing climate disaster)? And by the way, who’s “we?”

      1. lordkoos

        Humans will not stop having children, but climate change will eventually thin the herd in a most unpleasant way.

  25. t hardy

    The Onion piece yesterday was a scream – but disturbingly realistic. In the same vein but the opposite direction this time – just recently Paul Jay and his website was permanently banned from Google’s Youtube site.
    Paul discusses this but doesn’t explicitly link the unelected governmental role that such sites have and are capturing.

    1. Basil Pesto

      No it wasn’t. They censored one of his videos on the 1/6 riot. I just opened the video explaining this on his YouTube channel.

  26. Darthbobber

    Cornel West and Harvard:

    Since Harvard already granted tenure to West once, and since his “controversial and provocative” stances and his views on Palestine were known quantities when he came back from Princeton, (where he also had tenure), I’m inclined to doubt that the Man is repressing him for his views in this case. particularly since they explicitly pronounce themselves satisfied with his work and had arranged a ten year appointment, not what you do when you’re setting up to fire somebody.

    His 5 year appointment was not a tenure track appointment in the first place and Harvard was probably mildly surprised at receiving a tenure application from a guy who, to that point, had shown no sign of dissatisfaction with his non-tenure track position. (They shouldn’t have been surprised, because West is West, and his talent for self-promotion has always been considerable.)

    They might well grant tenure anyway, as I read the tea leaves, because West is correct in believing that having an association with Harvard is of greater value to Harvard than it is to him. He’s there precisely to provide street cred to an institution that finds it hard to come by. And I doubt if an equivalent replacement for Famous Public Intellectual Cornelius West is readily available.

  27. bob

    Andrew Cuomo and the Lincoln Project were media-created debacles. What now? Guardian

    “But in the last week, the facade has collapsed, revealing that those bravely trying to sound the alarm for months were right all along”

    People have been trying to sound the alarm about him for over a decade, at least. In that time he’s just further consolidated power. Everyone is afraid of him.

    Unless this continues and the rest of the media class admit he’s a low-rent bagman, he’ll stay exactly where he is for at least another decade.

  28. paul

    RE: “The feud between Sturgeon and Salmond could derail Scottish independence” & “The impact of the SNP fallout is hard to predict”, by two of my least favourite gossipistes, are both rather unenlightening.

    There is nothing to derail, neither in party or government has the current first minister promoted or planned for independence.
    All actions towards that end have been in opposition. eg
    opposing a court case, brought by an individual and funded by 10,000+ supporters which sought to clarify whether the parliament was competent to declare a referendum independent of westminster.
    Stating that a section 30 order from westminster has to be granted to have a referendum, knowing full well it will never be granted.

    That is why her party has lost half its membership over the last few years, (as support for independence has risen) leaving the organisation flat broke and basically hanging on through short money.

    As for an alleged feud, it is nothing of the sort.

    She, her husband and court actively sought to destroy her more capable predecessor’s reputation, first through, not (per kuessbenberg) a ‘botched’ investigation, but one judged ‘unlawful’, ‘procedurally unfair’ and ‘tainted by apparent bias’ according to the court of session and second by using all means available* to fit him up for imprisonment.

    * Including a 22 strong dedicated police unit, 700 interviews of 400 cases (the few that were forced into court did not convince a majority female jury)
    *Leaking of charges to a very friendly newspaper man.
    *Handing over complaints to the crown office (rather than the police) against the wishes of the complainers.

    Just this morning, an SNP ‘strategist’ tried to blame the quite justified criticism of those involved on ‘russian bots’, much to the approval of an associate of the entirely discredited ‘Integrity Initiative’.
    That’s how deranged this is getting.

  29. savedbyirony

    Yves, as our mother, who was in a wheelchair, grew weaker and her aids had increasing troubles assisting her in and out of the chair for bathing, bedtime, etc. they switched to using a Hoyer sit-to-stand lift. This was a huge improvement for both her and them, and also safer. The sit-to-stand lifts are very easy to use (I have mobility issues and muscle wasting due to illness and could assist my mom using the lift with ease.) and at least in Ohio there are medical supply outfits that will rent them. They come in various sizes and are generally quite easy to steer around, however a normal sized home may have bathroom doorways that might be too narrow.

    I am very sorry to hear about your continuing troubles with your Mom’s care. I have been there. It is so tough and draining. Please do whatever you need to do concerning this site to be able to take care of your health and well being as well as your mom’s.

      1. savedbyirony

        I can relate to your mother’s objections. Ours was not too thrilled the first time an aid wheeled the sit-to-stand into her room. But it literally changed her life. Transfers became so much quicker, and she felt much safer being transferred that way. (For a short time much later in the progression of her condition she had to be lifted by an advanced Hoyer lift and she hated that.) Should your mother ever have to go into a rehab for a time and they want to use one there where rooms and bathrooms are designed with there use in mind, i hope she will let them give it a try with her.

  30. juno mas

    RE: Orthopaedic issues

    Yves, I feel your pain. Really. Five years ago I took up swimming to relieve the physical impact of running. Absolutely life changing. It takes time to develop the technique (I learned in a college level swimming class) to glide smoothly, if not rapidly, down the pool lane. But the low-impact, water-restraining, aerobic/physical exercise is transformative. Both mentally and physically.

    Oh, I also play a Doctor on TV: Get More Rest!

    1. Ping

      I emphatically recommend swimming for ortho issues. After an ortho injury and surgeries, my recovery was not a given and I credit swimming with returning to full functionality. Swimming uniquely pulses your blood providing oxygen and nutrients to damaged areas without impact. Its great for all the body systems.

      1. Yves Smith Post author

        A pool is too much of a time sink and getting in and out involves walking on concrete, which I can’t take.

        I am going to have to have surgery and have a complication I can’t get anyone to address. They just shut me up when I bring it up. I just get “trust your carpenter” handwaves. I’m not having doctors make on the fly decisions when I have spine, leg and foot issues that play into what is going on.

  31. Darthbobber

    Times piece on reading goat entrails from a short-term spike in the 10 year note.

    I’ll leave to one side the question of whether it makes a lick of sense to refer to something called “the Biden economy” at this point.

    The number itself shows only that the cost of government borrowing remains at very low levels even by recent (post-2008) standards, to say nothing of more long range historical standards. And not by a tiny bit, either. I’d defy anybody to look at a 40 or 50 year chart, containing the opening, closing, low, high and average yields each year and find something in the present numbers indicating either ominous clouds or expectations of a coming boom.

      1. Wukchumni

        Seeing that article a decade ago before short term vacation rentals overtook our community, would have had me shuddering in a well, there goes the neighborhood, as everybody will want to live here now, but frankly i’d prefer we got a nice equity refugee family of 4 from San Francisco here to stay and lay down roots, not for just a long weekend.

  32. jr

    Fun stuff from “Rising”:

    Team Rising hosts Democratic strategist and professional sniveler Andrew Feldman as he gets his glasses smashed debating Krystal, as well as Emily Jashinsky of “The Federalist”, about Soledad O’Brien’s recent comments lumping FOX, CNN, MSNBC, basically the whole MSM, together as caring more about “elevating” liars to chase ratings than journalism. She points out Maddow specifically.

    Feldman splutters out a defense more or less along the lines of “equating FOX and the rest is crazy” and “every outlet has prostituted itself, mainstream and independent” without any backup. Krystal shatters his shield then Emily takes his legs out. Krystal’s heart-quickening laugh is a weapon unto itself, I bet it leaves welts on Feldman’s face.

    1. lyman alpha blob

      Sometimes I think they have that Feldman guy on just so they can rip him to shreds – he never comes out of it well. It’s sort of a reverse hippy-punching and it’s really quite entertaining to watch them make the liberal squirm.

      1. jr

        Totally, I wonder why he comes back, he get’s his @&& kicked by guests from across the political spectrum as well as the hosts. Seeing him torn apart by those two was almost a little….cruel. Which is nice.

  33. flora

    Thanks much for the NYTimes article about Smith College’s (mis)handling of students’ charges against faculty and staff.

  34. CatmanPNW

    That Flood Factor website linked to in the Fast Company article had my house down as minimal flood risk (<3% chance and estimated at less than $100 damage), but still had me down as "recommended" to purchase flood insurance.

  35. km

    The NYT article as summarized by Taibbi sounds like the same argument for the Index of Forbidden Books that the Catholic Church used to put out.

    1. Basil Pesto

      footballers are routinely ‘taking a knee’ before kick-offs (although some are beginning to stop because they question the efficacy of the gesture) in a ritual so tokenistic it’s almost endearingly pitiable. No word on whether they’ll be boycotting the 2022 World Cup, though.

      The Guardian’s reporting on Qatar 2022 has been pretty good over the years. But there’s been no indication they will boycott the World Cup either. To recap: Qatar have used slave labour to engineer a transparent soft-power play in the form of a World Cup in a country bereft of anything but the most rudimentary football culture.

      Black Lives Matter. Brown, eh, not so much. The hypocrisy around this stinks to high heaven.

      I love football but I’ll be giving the next World Cup a miss.

  36. chuck roast

    1,200 new German words…oh, the horror!
    Charles V explains it all:
    “I speak Spanish to God, Italian to women, French to men and German to my horse.”

  37. Synoia

    The U.S. Air Force admitted that the F-35 stealth fighter has failed.

    As has the Swiss Army knife as a useful version of any tool it purports to have.

    I got my first Swiss Army Knife in 1958, and quickly deiced then none of its “tools” were practical.

    1. lordkoos

      Ha. I’ve kept one of the smaller models in my car for decades and in that time have barely used it, and then only the blade and the can opener, the latter works OK for getting the top off of a bottle…

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