Links 10/9/2021

Goose Taps On Animal Hospital’s Door, Comes To Comfort Injured Mate Animal Rescue (David L)

‘INSANE Longboarding run down a GNARLY Romanian hill’ Flipboard (David L). I am not keen about videos that = surgery futures, but to each his own.

Biden Administration Defends Wildlife Services’ Killing of Wolf Pups in Idaho Western Watersheds Project

You thought the U.S. fire season was bad. Russia’s is much worse. Grist (resilc)

Italian sailors knew of America 150 years before Christopher Columbus, new analysis of ancient documents suggests PhysOrg (Chuck L)

The Neurologist Who Diagnoses Psychosomatics Nautilus

UC Santa Cruz: Scientists Assemble A Biological Clock In A Test Tube To Study How It Works Patch (David L)

Neuroscientists Roll Out First Comprehensive Atlas of Brain Cells ScienceDaily

Having a sense of purpose linked to better memory Study Finds (Jim D)

Feeling, in situ aeon. Important.

People with higher socioeconomic status have lower emotional intelligence, especially at high levels of inequality PsyPost (David L)

How do humans make sense of the bomb? Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists (guurst)


‘Naively ambitious’: How COVAX failed on its promise to vaccinate the world STAT

Snow Leopard Dies of Suspected COVID-19 Daily Beast. Consider the Snow Leopard Trust. Bare bones and they do practical things like pay poachers to become photographers and have members of communities that might profit from messing with snow leopards instead earn income from handicrafts which the Trust sells. I have one of their plush toys.


Global prevalence and burden of depressive and anxiety disorders in 204 countries and territories in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic The Lancet


New Law Bans Harassment at Vaccination Sites, but Free Speech Concerns Persist KHN

Teachers blast union for telling them to upload vaccination status of student’s parents, their names and addresses to app created by AOC’s campaign team Daily Mail


Hot off the wires: China’s Xi vows ‘reunification’ with Taiwan BBC. But a pretty pro-forma statement.

Pentagon Won’t Confirm Reports Of US Special Forces In Taiwan Eurasia Review (David L)

Taiwan: how the ‘porcupine doctrine’ might help deter armed conflict with China The Conversation

Bad timing for an energy crisis in China Asia Times (Chuck L, Kevin W)

China marches on towards Fourth Industrial Revolution Asia Times (resilc, Kevin W). Highlight: “These are self-consoling illusions of a lazy elite that has allowed America’s manufacturing, technological and education advantages to erode over the past 20 years – an elite that has nothing to say about reversing the decline.”

What has the Trade “War” between the United States and China achieved? MR Online (Anthony L)

The hidden enemies in Xi’s midst Asia Times (Chuck L)


Fears of Christmas chaos as energy price spike sparks warnings of factory shutdowns Independent

The Brexit three-card Monte Chris Grey

Brexit Impact Tracker 2 October 2021 – It’s the Wages – Stupid! Gerhard Schnyder (guurst)

Britain eyeing new trade deal with Gulf countries Middle East Online. This is the best trade deal headline the Government can generate?

The U.S. Is Organizing a $5 Million Gun Sale to Mexico Forces Accused of Murder and Kidnapping Intercept

New Cold War

Joint Statement: Foreign Ministers of Russia and China : Biological Weapons The Saker (Chuck L)


US and Taliban set for talks in Doha DW

The Ship That Became a Bomb New Yorker

Iron Dome fight in Congress exposes divides on Israel Mondoweiss

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

iPhone Apps No Better For Privacy Than Android, Oxford Study Finds Tom’s Guide

Never mind Russia: Turkey and Vietnam are Microsoft’s new state-backed hacker threats du jour The Register

Imperial Collapse Watch

Biden signs ‘Havana Syndrome’ law, Berlin police report new ‘cases’ blamed on mystery weapons scientists say don’t exist RT (Kevin W)


Ali Alexander, Jan. 6th Rally Organizer, Subpoenaed by House Committee Rolling Stone (furzy)

White House orders release of Trump records to Jan. 6 committee The Hill

Whistleblower: Capitol Police Leaders Acted ‘With Intent and Malice’ on Jan. 6 Daily Beast (furzy)


McConnell tells Biden he won’t cooperate with Democrats to raise debt ceiling again CNN

White House Weighs Wide-Ranging Push For Crypto Oversight Bloomberg

Kyrsten Sinema Wants to Cut $100 Billion in Proposed Climate Funds, Sources Say New York Times (Kevin W)

Biden to restore 3 national monuments cut by Trump Associated Press (David L)

The trillion-dollar coin scheme, explained by the guy who invented it Vox

Why do people worry about deficits? Noah Smith (UserFriendly)

Appeals court allows Texas abortion law to resume, stopping federal judge’s order to block its enforcement Texas Tribune

A Company Family: The Untold History of Obama and the CIA CovertAction Magazine (resilc)

Police State Watch

Black Children Were Jailed for a Crime That Doesn’t Exist. Almost Nothing Happened to the Adults in Charge. ProPublica

No federal charges against officer who shot and paralyzed Jacob Blake Guardian

Our Famously Free Press

The Nobel Peace Prize Acknowledges a Dangerous Era for Journalists New Yorker (JHR)

Wyoming librarians under fire for books about sex, LGBTQ Religion News (resilc)

Woke Watch

MIT Abandons Its Mission. And Me. Dorian Abbot (BC)

The Invention of “Xenophobia” Los Angeles Review of Books (Anthony L)

Calpers Adds Managers, and Challenges, in Push to Diversify Wall Street Journal (Kevin W)

The mystery of Elon Musk’s missing gas TechCrunch (Kevin W)

PSERS, in a sweeping shift, agrees to buy more U.S. stocks and dump costly hedge funds Philadelphia Inquirer. Not just hedge funds, also private equity!

Anyone Seen Tether’s Billions? Bloomberg

Countries Agree to Global Deal to Curb Tax Avoidance Wall Street Journal

Class Warfare

‘Can You Help The Scab Get Into The Cereal Factory?’ Read Instructions On Back Of Kellogg’s Box The Onion

Antidote du jour (Chet G):

And a bonus of sorts:

And a more typical bonus:

Print Friendly, PDF & Email


    1. LaRuse

      My thanks too. I sincerely like the circular handmade rug. I am thinking of ordering it for beside the bed.

    2. WhoaMolly

      Ordered the plush Snow Leopard for the 5 year old granddaughter. Checked the choice with grandma and got a thumbs up!

  1. timbers


    It doesn’t exist and recent experience showed me how much we lost privacy these past decades. I had a physical for new job. They tested a lot including vision and hearing. I tested with slight loss of hearing at very high frequencies which is not unusual as we age.

    Within weeks I received mail from a hearing center in my home town. After placing an order for new eye lenses that I will need for the job, I received sales offers from my previous eye lense/frame shop (Vision Center).

    They know everything we do and buy and spend money on. Maybe the only saving grace is “they” might be algos just doing their program and real people never see all that info it unless they want to.

    1. The Rev Kev

      ‘You have zero privacy anyway…Get over it!’

      Scott McNealy, co-founder and former CEO of Sun Microsystems, in 1999

      1. WhoaMolly

        If I recall, Larry Ellison the founder and CEO of Oracle once said the same thing.

        He eventually bought the Hawaiian island of Lanai and moved there in 2020. I expect he’s got all the privacy he wants.

      2. Skunk

        Okay, so let’s implement a program for politicians, CEOs, and other elites to wear bodycams and to livestream all of their waking actions to the public over the internet. If privacy doesn’t matter, then why not?

    2. Mikel

      Depending on a diagnosis and what one knows or learns about it, all of the incessant marekting and promotion can raise doubts about it – eapecially with what is known about the incentives to doctors from companies.

  2. The Rev Kev

    “Black Children Were Jailed for a Crime That Doesn’t Exist. Almost Nothing Happened to the Adults in Charge.”

    Years ago I read of how two Pennsylvanian judges were deliberately jailing kids in order to profit from them through kick-backs from a for-profit detention center and I thought that that was pretty vile. But this article is as bad as it can get. An aged, lying judge with a Judge Judy syndrome, a female cop bending and breaking laws because she can and nobody tries to stop her. A jail that is being used as a profit center by taking in kids from other counties for cash. And these are little kids for chrissake who are being traumatized because why? So that some people can get off on the power that they have? A judge thinks that she is on a mission from god? And where the hell was Tennessee while all this was going on? You can’t stop rumours spreading and I am willing to bet that the stories reached the State capital. This is beyond disgusting this story and the people in it beyond redemption-

    1. Nikkikat

      Sadly, this goes on all over the country. Kids placed in for profit juvenile facilities for minor incidences at school. So called runaways hauled in and kept for months and deemed incorrigibles. Parents billed monthly for their upkeep at for profit juvenile halls.
      Foster care systems that allow just about anyone to foster kids for the money. Welfare clients babies taken from them and placed with wealthy families as foster children when deemed that the parents didn’t pass parenting classes. The child is then allowed to be adopted as parents are intimidated into signing over their rights. It’s a racket. The counties use private Organizations run by churches as well as county adoption and foster agencies. While their are plenty of parents neglectful or abusive and the children should be protected and removed, there are also children placed in the system for either money or at the behest of individuals that enjoy power and zealotry.

      1. Stillfeelinthebern

        Placing a child in the secure State corrections in Wisconsin is $615 per day. It will go up to $1,154 per day on Jan 1, 2022. This is the state, not run by any private entity. From a county budget hearing this week as a county is charged when they send a child to these facilities.

      2. Ian Perkins

        their are plenty of parents neglectful or abusive and the children should be protected and removed

        I’d say kids should only be removed when there’s good reason to think they’re going somewhere better, which definitely isn’t something to be taken for granted. Institutions for kids are magnets for paedophiles and sadists, and are often run on penny-pinching profit-maximising lines to boot.

        1. JBird4049

          I just finished reading the story, and my God, what nicely self righteous monsters imprisoning children for profit, while supposedly (as the judge said of herself) doing God’s work.

          No wonder why unconstitutional, per the Supreme Court, debtor’s prisons keep poping up like cancer.

          Like I wrote earlier, what a lovely system we have.

      3. JBird4049

        I can do worse than that. In places like Oklahoma, false charges or just suggestions of ill treatment have gotten child welfare, complete with police, to steal children from their Native American parents for decades, if not near a century. No signing away of rights needed. It is almost as if the reservations were child hunting grounds. Lovely system we have here.

    2. JCC

      PA was on my mind when reading this, too. My other thought was that training children to hate and fear the society they live in is not a good plan for the long-term future of this society.

      1. JTMcPhee

        Hey, maybe some few of those children will grow up to be Peter Thiels and MArk Zuckerbergs and even Bill Gates! It’s just a weeding operation, dontcha know? Think of it as “Shark Tank:…

        1. Mikel

          I was just thinking along the lines of any rare instance where the child monetarily succeeds in life will be held up as the example. They will be invited on talk shows, etc. And all the abuses in the system will continue as usual. There of course will be “studies” for potential reforms, studies that lead nowhere and retread the same ground decade after decade .

    3. coboarts

      After a stint as a long-term sub and summer school teacher I was hired to be a teacher at the Chabot Community Day Center. CCDC was a collaboration between Alameda County Community Schools and the Alameda County Juvenile Court Schools. This was just following the awarding of my CA teaching credential – yeah, I wanted the ‘bad’ kids. In my class, Mr. C didn’t write paper. Actually being pushed to the point where I opened my drawer, brought the hardest of the hard back to ground. My paper would not have had any real power, as had no other teachers’. The students (transitioning back to the Alameda County High Schools), were free from consequences at CCDC. A kid on ‘detention’ would be out shooting hoops while his/her buddies were in class sweating our demanding curriculum (hahaha). Until… An administrator was having a bad day, then some unfortunate kid would be hauled back before a judge, and that kid would have a pile of useless paper that all of a sudden became a ‘reason’ to lock the kid back up. CCDC and the entire system it participated in were setting our kids up to fail. I was already on my way out – there was too much fun to be had with all the tech booming around silicon valley. Dark cynicism is my light humor – wanna know why

    4. The Rev Kev

      When I was a kid growing up, a big deal was made of the Germans who ran the concentration camps and why the Germans did this. There were theories why culturally, historically, etc. that the Germans were prone to do this. As I got a bit older I found that a lot of the guards weren’t even German but were from other countries like the Ukraine. Eventually I realized that this whole construct was just some feel-good propaganda and that any country was capable of manning such camps as monsters are always to be found among us. If America ever had concentration camps, the people in this article would be the sort of people to both staff and maintain them. The challenge is to weed them out as they come into the system and not protect them instead.

  3. jr

    Years ago I read a Harper’s Magazine article about some federal agency that was tasked with conserving wildlife by apparently killing as much of it as it could. One story that stuck was how they tested poisons on stray dogs picked up from the pound; pure, unmitigated torture. The take away was that the agents in the field were total sociopaths who openly bragged about their atrocities to the journalists who interviewed them. Broken people looking to break things.

    1. ambrit

      In a perverse example of topsy turvy, America first tested and perfected such tactics on the American Indians. Usually, outre processes are tested on animals first and then deployed to human populations.
      I was personally effected by such a “culling” process. At one point, the Stennis Federal preserve (138,800 acres,) had a major overpopulation of deer. The local hunters were given licenses for a one time no limit hunt , does as well as bucks. A bunch of we locals were set to go. Deer processing places as far away as Bogalusa were ready to deal with the influx of venison. The week before the hunt was scheduled to go on, some sadists in Jackson sent down a “kill team” of Wildlife Officers to do the cull, without any warning at all. The deer thus killed were all buried. I dare say that the Mississippi Wildlife and Fisheries Service reputation on the Coast has never recovered. Plus, Wildlife and Fisheries officers are still not nearly as safe along the Coast as before, even two decades later.

      1. Milton

        For the sake of the natural world I am not one to despair the oncoming annihilation due to global warming. In fact I will die in good humor knowing that the world will soon be ridding itself of parasitic humans in short order. What a horrid species.

        1. Oh

          Unfortunately a good part of the natural world will die due to global heating caused by the horrid species.

        2. megrim

          My big concern about this is that we’re going to take a lot of other species with us when we extinct ourselves.

  4. upstater

    Solar Energy on the Frontlines and Old-Fashioned Clotheslines, Counterpunch, by Ralph Nader

    I once read in California clothes dryers consume the equivalent of 3 nuclear power plants of electricity… not sure how accurate that claim was, but surely a non-trivial amount of electric is consumed drying clothes.

    I lived for a time in Arizona and the subdivision homeowners association had deed restrictions banning clotheslines. They actually successfully sued homeowners! We draped clothes on a steel fence; it would take as little as 15 minutes to dry a wash load in summer.

    In Central New York, we dry clothes outside from April through October and hang clothes during cold months in the basement when we use a wood burning stove in winter. Our electric dryer is seldom used.

    Radical energy conservation is needed to moderate the climate disaster, but ain’t gonna happen.

    1. ambrit

      One unforeseen outcome arising from climate change is the lessening of the number of “sunny days” here in which to hang one’s cloths out to dry. I now have to watch the weather closely when it comes time to do a load of clothes. I now wait until I have two days in arow of reasonably expectable dry days before I do the wash.
      I have been tempted to put the clothes line up between two poles in the front yard. They want gauche? We’ll show them gauche!

      1. marieann

        This has been our problem all this year. We wash every weekend and we have had about 7 hangy out days so far since spring,then we have to hang in the basement and the clothes take much longer to dry because the heat isn’t on.

        Surprisingly this weekend (our Thanksgiving) is a perfect hangy out day and our clothesline is full

        1. Late Introvert

          My wife and I labored for years to use our clothesline but the birds here are (thankfully) very plentiful and ruined the sheets in particular almost every time.

          Most clothes can be worn several times, and most Americans do way too much laundry/showers.

      2. kgw

        My wife, much to my chagrin originally, had me install what amounts to a double-line down our long hall for use when it used to rain a bit more…In the hot Socal summers it works great. We have a gas dryer that gets used as well, I must admit.

      1. The Rev Kev

        We’ve got a Hills Hoist but there is one problem with them. Kids cannot resist using them to grab onto and swinging around on which usually bends the pipe frame (puts hand up in air).

    2. Joe Well

      I once stayed in an apartment in Colombia (the South American country) that forbad clotheslines on the balconies.

      When I hung just one thing on the balcony, a security guard was knocking on the door within an hour.

      Clothes dryers existed in shared laundry rooms but weren’t standard inside apartments. People mostly dried clothes on those little folding racks we use for delicates in the US, even if it took a couple days to get completely dry. People just didn’t mind if their clothes smelled a little musty. When I brought it up to someone, they looked at me like I was joking.

  5. Jeremy Grimm

    “Feeling, in situ”:
    If emotions are as dependent on culture — on nurture — as this link suggests … what does that mean for empathy across cultures, across class within a culture, between different species? I am also a little uncomfortable with the ideas in this link after endless sessions of ‘diversity’ training at the firm where I worked. Now add diversity of emotions and expressions? How are we to walk over so many eggshells?

    1. Questa Nota

      Tale for a modern age: Just when I thought I was lexithymic I realized that I was really somatose. :)

      1. Jeremy Grimm

        Your comment is not self-illuminating. I largely adhere to a Western Philosophy of pragmatic realism … I admire the thoughts of Bertrand Russell. That is not to say I am immune to thinking more broadly.

        1. kgw

          It is a sanskrit term, sometimes translated as the storehouse (alaya) consciousness (vijnana). There is a classic work from what most of us in the west call the second century: A Compendium of the Mahayana, by Asangha, translated by Karl Brunholzer, that explicates this and its context. The work also contains Indian, Chinese, and Tibetan commentaries of the main text.

          It is a realistic pragmatism, I must say.

  6. The Rev Kev

    “The Nobel Peace Prize Acknowledges a Dangerous Era for Journalists”

    Shoulda guessed. It’s a Masha Gessen article. Maria Ressa’s prize was fully deserved but Dmitry Muratov? This guy thinks that Alexey Navalny would make a great President but that guy is Russia’s answer to England’s Tommy Robinson. And Gessen only mentioned Ressa once in that article. But when the Nobel Committee was seeking to award prizes to journalists “for their efforts to safeguard freedom of expression, which is a precondition for democracy and lasting peace”, how about Julian Assange? That would be well deserved as well as a vote of support for journalists worldwide. But then I remembered. The Nobel Committee is also the one that gave a Nobel peace prize to Obama just after he had been elected and who in his acceptance, proceeded to give a war speech.

    1. begob

      In the interview with Ressa that I heard she spoke about fake news as a virus that needed inoculation through censorship of social media. Seemed like part of the same public relations campaign as that Facebook whistleblower over the past few days.

  7. Wukchumni

    For many years, Marie Wilcox was the guardian of the Wukchumni language, one of several Indigenous languages that were once common in Central California but have either disappeared or nearly disappeared. She was the only person for a time who could speak it fluently.

    She started writing down words in Wukchumni as she remembered them in the late 1990s, scrawling on the backs of envelopes and slips of paper. Then she started typing them into an old boxy computer. Soon she was getting up early to devote her day to gathering words and working into the night.

    After 20 years of labor, of hunting and pecking on her keyboard, Ms. Wilcox, who died at 87 on Sept. 25, produced a dictionary, the first known complete compendium of Wukchumni.

    Who Speaks Wukchumni?

    1. JP

      I assume Wukchumni is a Yocuts dialect. When I was a child in the 50’s there was an “indian” school in Porterville. 45 years later I learn my local building inspector was the head master’s son. He grew up at the school and had some knowledge of Yocuts language. He said the exact meaning of words changed from watershed to watershed such as whether a person was referring to a small spoon or soup ladle.

      When we relocated to this area 35 years ago there was a woman on the Tule Indian Reservation who knew the extraordinary Yocuts basket technology as well as the herbal plants and tradition. I learned some of the plant fibers that were used to make the famous water tight baskets from her, actually plant roots. Unfortunately she was already sick with cancer at that time and passed taking all that knowledge with her. I don’t believe there is that much Yocuts blood left on the reservation and probably no one in the area with significant knowledge of the traditional arts and technology.

      Just one anecdotal example of the tremendous loss of cultural treasure in our melting pot world. An extinction event less covered.

      1. Wukchumni

        The museum @ Mooney Grove in Visalia has one of the best Yokut basket collections around. There must be 125 of all sizes, shapes and purposes on display.

  8. antidlc

    COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations rise among vaccinated in Pennsylvania

    The latest Department of Health data on so-called “breakthrough” infections shows that between Sept. 5 and Oct. 4, vaccinated people represented just over a quarter — 26% — of more than 135,000 new infections and nearly 5,000 hospital admissions across the state. Death statistics for the last 30 days were not available because of lags in reporting and verification.

    1. curlydan

      I did some quick calculations based on a 1 in 5,000 daily chance of the vaccinated getting COVID with that probability based on a study from about a month ago. At that rate, we could expect 30,000+ infections per day among the vaccinated in the U.S.

      The U.K is a possible example of our “future”. They averaged a high of 46K infections per day this summer (78 days ago). The best they’ve been down to since then is 26K infections.

  9. The Rev Kev

    “McConnell tells Biden he won’t cooperate with Democrats to raise debt ceiling again”

    I saw Schumer’s rant in a tweet and it was crazy bad-

    He could have said something like ‘I would like to thank my Republican colleagues’ but instead decided to burn every bridge down instead. I can only guess that when negotiations comes around again in December, that he does not want a successful negotiation then. Why? Maybe to make out that the Republicans are mean for demolishing things just before Christmas and that will lead more people to vote Democrat in the 2022 midterms. Wouldn’t that mean that millions of people will be suffering the consequences of these political games in the middle of winter and just before the Christmas break? Why yes, it would. But we have to keep sight of what is important remember. /sarc

    1. JTMcPhee

      Why haven’t Schumer and the Dem leadership taken the opportunities they have had to kill the whole “raise the debt ceiling” schtick by burning it with fire? Along with killing the BS silent filibuster? Gee, I wonder…

      Kayfabe forever.

      Best Dem Party that money can buy, all right…

    2. timbers

      President McConnell is laying down the law to Senator Biden. Can’t say I care much. Senator Biden’s Build Back NEVER isn’t so great. And this debt impass it’s exactly precisely what Dem leadership wants of course.

  10. Wukchumni

    Horse racing has been dying for years in the USA, they took the tax breaks away decades ago, and the pursuit is cruel in that it essentially costs the same to board and train the best horse as it does the worst horse, which brings me to Fresno-part of the ‘fair circuit’ of horse racing in Cali, stanzas of which typically last a fortnight, and is the dregs in terms of thoroughbreds, ability-wise.

    It simply makes no financial sense to own cheap claiming horses such as the ones i’ll watch today @ the Big Fresno Fair, virtually a guarantee to lose money.

    I took a look at the race entries, and its pretty much all 4 and 5 horse fields, and typically the first 4 finishers get a share of the purse money, so even if the 4th place nag ends up 38 lengths behind-there’s a few hundred bucks in it, which is probably the only reason the sport hangs on.

    The ‘sport of kings’ is like everything else these days, suffering a shortage. When I was a young adult virtually every race would have 12 horses running, now it’s a third of that.

    Unlike a casino where parking and entrance is free, i’ll be out about $25 for parking, entrance and program even before I place my first wager.

    1. Jeremy Grimm

      But are there no horse pulling events at the Big Fresno Fair? You could always bet on the power of a prize Clydesdale.

    2. Pat

      The other aspect of it is that most of the races are claiming races. Owners, trainers, but don’t forget those who breed or raise the horses, it is also feast or famine, the big names can sell an untested colt ir filly for hundreds of thousands of dollars. It is different for everyone else, you put a horse in the yearling sales and you are lucky to eke out your costs. The other route is to wait and race showing off your success. So You spend time and money breeding a horse, only to enter them in the only races you can. And most, if not all are going to be claiming races. Which means just as you are showing what your horse can do, some one can buy them.

      I love watching them run, and even hurdle in the overseas races,
      but you are right the system is very broken.

      1. newcatty

        I used to love along time ago, very briefly, watching horses run at a track within walking distance from our house. Then, as I became aware, not so long ago, of the real cruelty to the horses in their “training” or the widespread use ( hush, hush) of drugs in the business it wasn’t any fun anymore. This is well documented and, if interested, can be researched on line. A poignant reminder, horses were dropping dead not long ago on CA tracks and other ones in this country. Horse racing may be declining in popularity. It is a racket. If people want to breed, own any horse it should be cared for in any circumstance. There are some moral absolutes in life and one of them is to have compassion and protection of animals. Let racing die.

      2. Wukchumni

        The first contest had 3 horses running and it had the feel of a match race, but usually match races are held between thoroughbreds of the highest caliber, not cheap claimers.

        Things improved slightly in the second race as there were 4 horses entered.

        We were down by the finish line and I was talking to a young miss employed by the racetrack about the sport of kings, and it was as if she was discussing something that had already passed away.

    3. albrt

      But look at Epitaph
      He wins it by a half
      According to this here in the Telegraph
      I know it’s Valentine
      The morning work looks fine
      Besides the jockey’s brother’s a friend of mine

  11. liam

    Aeon: In this provocative new telling – let’s call it the Diversity Thesis – what we feel, how we feel it – perhaps even whether we feel it at all – depends not just on biology but also on context, including the language we use and the culture we come from.

    I’ve long wondered about the extent of the impact of language on modes of thought and feeling, and indeed on even our basic understanding of the world and ourselves. Western languages, (or at least, the languages I have a superficial understanding of), are basically ego centric. Everything is I!!! I feel. I think. I do. But even in the west, there are languages, and, (I surmised here), cultures that are not so ego-centric. All children in Ireland, when going through school must learn the Irish language, Gaelic. It is a surprisingly difficult language to learn, or so it seems, and indeed seemed to me,at a very young age. And sadly most come out of school with a thoroughly inadequate ability to speak it, despite having spent fourteen years learning. So with my daughter now in school, I have resumed learning it again, and have been remarkably surprised at how much easier it now appears, and how profoundly different it is in many respects.

    An example: Tá brón orm, or similarly, Tá áthas orm, which in their respective translations mean, I am sad, and I am happy. However, in a literal sense that is not what they mean. They mean, there is sadness on me, and there is happiness on me. This is not just a distinction without a difference. If I wish to say I put my coat on, I say, Cuirim mo chóta orm or likewise, to my daughter, Cuir do chóta ort, i.e. put your shoes on. In other words, emotions, just as clothes are something we wear, not a statement of identity. Interestingly, luck, is also treated in this manner: Tá an tádh orm. There are no lucky people, but people on whom luck is bestowed.

    The use of prepositions in this manner, extends right throughout the language. If I say, Tá an bia agam, a translation would say I have the food. But once again, that would miss an important nuance. A literal understanding would be, the food is at me. It is a statement of where the food is as opposed to what I have. This, in my somewhat naive understanding, suggests an abstraction from self. The folding of pronouns into prepositions shifts the subject from the person of the English translation, to the object or state, while the self is placed in relation to that same state or object.

    This, of course, is just to scratch the surface. But it does make me wonder about the manner in which people of other cultures and languages both think and feel, and indeed if at a structural level how it is that they perceive those same thoughts and feelings.

    1. lordkoos

      Yes, I was struck when reading the piece that language was hardly mentioned at all, yet language must have a huge effect on the expression of emotions in different cultures. As soon as people begin learning to talk and understand, their language of begins to wire their brains in a certain way. This is a huge omission in my opinion.

      I am like most Americans in that I only know how to speak English, at my age I’m not likely to learn another language, and I think I’m poorer for it. I wish I had learned a non-western language in my younger days as I’m certain it would have broadened my way of thinking. (Although I did become quite familiar with Jamaican patois at one point, I’m not sure that counts.)

      1. liam

        Yes, it was telling, albeit understood in a somewhat understated way.
        Unlike previous studies that relied on translators, Crivelli learned the local language and immersed himself in life on the island. As much as possible, he wanted to keep Western culture from distorting his vision or sneaking biases into the research.

        I have to say, learning a language is quite a difficult but rewarding thing. It stretches the mind, and if you’re curious allows for quite a bit of rumination. Languages can be immensely poetic when you scratch beneath the surface. We tend to see them in a utilitarian light, but there’s so much more in them.

        The speaking of only one language is not unique to the US, btw. It’s a noted feature of English speakers everywhere.

    2. Jeff W

      Language plays a definite part. If the linguistic community has you express things a certain way, you attend to those things that you express. (The clearest example I can think of is are the Kuuk Thaayorre people of northern Australia who use cardinal directions—north, east, south, west—instead of relative directions—left, right, front—so they’d refer to, say, their “northeast leg” and they’d say, as part of a routine greeting, “I’m going in a southwest direction.” In that kind of linguistic community where you have to know which direction you’re facing every moment, you become preternaturally adept at keeping oriented in space at all times.)

      I wrote the following before I saw your comment so I’ll append it here:

      I’ve never gotten that emotion research. There seems to be a difference between the various internal states that people label as “emotions,” the labels they give those states, the conditions under which they experience those states and the way they express them (or not). It seems like Paul Ekman’s research mixes them all up. The first one, being physiological, would seem to be universal—in which case, Ekman’s six elements—anger, surprise, disgust, enjoyment, fear, and sadness—don’t seem to be bad candidates as labels for these states. (The states might be “basic”—although I wouldn’t rule out more—in the sense that everyone experiences them—I can’t imagine that the Trobrianders would not experience sadness in some situations and disgust in others, even if they don’t discriminate between photos with the “right” labels.) The others—the labels, the situations in which people experience these states and the way they express them—would seem to be highly situational.

      This research strikes me as somewhat similar to that research on color perception, e.g., “Do people whose languages divide the color space differently perceive color differently?” On the one hand, they do—because, again, their linguistic community forces them attend to colors differently—but, on the other, people can obviously discriminate between colors, even if they don’t linguistically. English speakers can tell the difference between light blue and dark blue, though perhaps not as quickly as Russian speakers, even if they don’t distinguish the colors by different words as Russian speakers do. We can view that as supporting either some “diversity thesis” or some “universality thesis” but it’s neither of those things—we’re just taking different measures of discriminability.

      As an aside, just yesterday, I came across a YouTube video (this one) where this Japanese YouTuber says that Japanese people don’t roll their eyes to express “disgust, annoyance, or contempt,” and when he saw his US friends first do it, he was completely confused and didn’t know what they were doing. Now I’d surmise that Japanese people experience disgust, annoyance, and contempt pretty much like everyone else, perhaps in situations that don’t map exactly to other cultures, but they obviously don’t express these emotions in the same way (e.g., with a roll of the eyes), if they do in some situations at all.

      1. flora

        The others—the labels, the situations in which people experience these states and the way they express them—would seem to be highly situational.

        I think that’s right. There’s a long dispute about “which influences which”. See also the long dispute about the number of Eskimo words for ‘snow’. per Wiki:

        The claim that Eskimo languages (specifically, Yupik and Inuit) have an unusually large number of words for “snow”, first loosely attributed to the work of anthropologist Franz Boas and particularly promoted by his disciple Benjamin Lee Whorf,[1][2] has become a cliché often used to support the controversial linguistic-relativity hypothesis (also known as “Whorfianism”), which posits that a language’s vocabulary (among other features) shapes its speakers’ view of the world. This “strong version” of the hypothesis is largely now discredited,[3] though the basic notion that Eskimo languages have many more root words for “snow” than the English language is itself supported by a 2010 study.[4][5]

        1. wuk's grandma

          though the basic notion that Eskimo languages have many more root words for “snow” than the English language is itself supported by a 2010 study

          the inuit and yupik are rolling their eyes at “supported by a 2010 study.”

          oh, well thank goodness our language is “supported by a study” by people who know next to nothing about us!

          audacious much?

      2. martell

        The analogy with color terminology is, I think, misleading. Such words are not used in the same way that emotion language is used. For instance, if someone were to say that some article of clothing is black, it would make perfect sense to object, assert that it is in fact dark brown, and suggest that she or he look again, closer and under better lighting conditions. But suppose that someone said “I am very angry with you.” Now, it might make sense to object on the grounds that this person is being insincere (though this is quite unlikely in the case of anger, an emotion rarely faked). But it would make no sense at all to claim that this person is mistaken, that she or he is not angry at all but in fact overjoyed, and suggest that he or she look again, “inside” themselves and somehow under conditions on which “internal” perception is more reliable.

        Emotion terms, unlike color terms, are not labels when used by the speaker to talk about his or her own emotions, if by ‘label’ we mean a sort of tag that is used to classify objects given to perception. For one thing, those objects would have to be very strange, since they would be, in principle, completely hidden to all but the perceiver. For another, this privileged perceiver, the subject of emotion, would not perceive them by way of any known perceptual apparatus: not eyes, not ears, etc. And, finally, perception in this case and seemingly no other would have to be all but infallible (since we, as a rule, do not gainsay verbal expressions of one’s own emotions except on grounds of insincerity).

        A more helpful analogy, I think, would be with cries of pain. The cries are not descriptions of an in principle hidden entity to which the crier has privileged access. Cries are not descriptions at all. Rather they are expressions of pain, which, instead of being about the pain, are manifestations of the pain itself to others. Over time, human beings are taught to replace such cries, for the most part, with verbal expressions, such as “that hurts.” Different languages elaborate on the primitive expression, the cry, in different ways while allowing for more or less refinement when it comes to such expressions. And so it goes with emotion language.

      3. liam

        Indeed, there truly is a symbiotic relationship between language and culture, and how we perceive our place in the world. A writer and Irish language advocate, named Manchán Magan, has written a book called “Thirty-Two Words for Field: Lost Words of the Irish Landscape”. I have listened to interviews where he has described the manner of speaking in Gaelic speaking regions. I remember how in one interview, he mentioned that something as simple as direction was rooted in the environment. So that instead of saying turn left, it might be “turn against the sun”. Your first paragraph reminded me of that.

        1. PlutoniumKun

          On colour, Irish language wokies have gotten themselves in a twist over the word ‘gorm’ meaning green. It also, when applied to skin tone, means generally ‘dark’ or ‘tanned’, hence a dark skinned person can be called this. Needless to say, people have taken offence at being called ‘green men’ so they are discussing an alternative.

    3. Jeremy Grimm

      I am skeptical that emotions are so diverse and malleable to the sway of words and culture. I do believe that facial expressions, like language might vary across cultures. I also believe facial expressions and language make poor measures for feelings. I believe a sense of empathy reaches past facial expression and language. In its application, empathy relies on a much greater context than the outward signs facial expressions and language convey and can often belie.

      1. liam

        I am skeptical that emotions are so diverse and malleable to the sway of words and culture.

        I would suggest that the relationship between language and emotion is not linear, but circular. In my understanding, (and I could be way over my head here), languages are a framework in which we process and structure thoughts, so that when we feel, our understanding of how we feel and what we feel, and our relationship to that feeling, is structured within the framework of the language. It’s kind of meta.

        1. Jeremy Grimm

          I place emotion outside the domain of language. Emotion is understood and communicated through language — and language acts. What we feel, and our relationship to that feeling … might be structured and expressed in language. But what we feel, … what we truly feel is not. Language expresses what I feel allowed to feel and externalize. That is not the same, often not even close to what we feel … and that that is not meta.

          1. liam

            I don’t disagree with you, just with the assertion that we feel. I’m not denying the existence of emotion, deep intense emotion that exists entirely within it’s own domain, irrespective of language. Nor am I saying that because a word might not exist to describe a feeling, that that feeling is not felt. Nothing like that. What I’m saying is that the expression in one language attaches the feeling to the self. In another language it detaches the feeling from the self and places the self in relation to it. But then, as I’ve said above, I’m no expert on these things. This is just my understanding of it. It’s an interesting one though.

    4. PlutoniumKun

      By a coincidence I was helping my friends 11 year old daughter on her Irish last week. I was pleasantly surprised to see that the textbooks are far better than I remember. They are clearly influenced by Stephen Krashens theories on language acquisition. I was kind of surprised how much I remembered of the language (I was never a good student at Irish or any other language for that matter), although I was firmly corrected on one point by her 6 year old sister (and she was right, to my embarrassment). Language teaching has definitely improved since my day.

      Irish is a very difficult language by European standards, structurally it is very different from most western European languages. There is a very old theory that Irish is only superficially an Indo European language – its long been noted that it has structural similarities to old Hebrew, Aramaic and Arabic. The theory was that there was a Mediterranean-Atlantic language of seafarers in the neolithic and Irish still has traces of that structure. Interestingly, the very latest DNA evidence suggests that Irish neolithic farmers are most closely related to peoples in western Anatolia and Sardinia, so there may be something in this (this isn’t outlandish, as there is clear archaeological evidence of a ‘coastal’ culture building the megaliths of western Europe).

      As you say, it has some fascinating constructions that are very un-European. Language is definitely something that influences our personalities and perceptions. I was looking recently at a video from Matt vs Japan, a well known Japanese language YouTuber who mentioned that his bilingual Japanese girlfriend preferred the ‘Japanese speaking’ Matt far more than she liked the ‘English speaking’ Matt. I’ve known quite a few people who say that their personality changes when they change language, especially when its a structurally very different language from their native one.

      1. Jeremy Grimm

        This link and your comment recalled to me a statement I heard almost 40 years ago at an ‘English’ tea at a language school in Roppongi, Tokyo. A young and I guessed, up and coming salaryman, said he enjoyed speaking English because of the freedom he felt when he spoke it. That statement, which he did not further elaborate, seemed very odd to me. I thought he might be speaking of being able to use a single form of speaking without worry about nuances and complexities of Japanese pronouns and speech forms marking age, relative status, and sex that complicated Japanese speech acts. I believe I missed another crucial aspect of his comment. Japanese speech constrained and directed the feelings he could express or show to others. I believe failure to observe proper forms in Japanese culture could be interpreted as a dire breach of etiquette with dire consequences.

        I believe that facial expressions, even the uncensored expressions of inner states of feeling are speech acts, very much controlled by culture. Emotions can have broad aspects of universality beyond culture, even species, without suggesting the same about the speech acts that communicate, or in some cases, attempt to hide the underlying emotion.

          1. JBird4049

            Disturbingly, this reminds me of how American retail workers have to act even after being treated abusively by customers or the management.

              1. JBird4049

                Interesting. But really, being in retail is being an actor. To make yourself so disgustingly proper, so smooth a façade that there is nothing for the rage monster to put there rage onto. The customer can become foam flecked with rage because they cannot abuse you even more for defending your humanity.

                Of course, it often becomes so smooth that there is nothing for you to attach your humanity, but paying the rent often requires discarding it. (Shrug.) Though sometimes it was almost worth it when a customer just could not get angry with anything you were doing. (Act human dammit, I want to destroy someone’s day!) It got to where I had to run interference for other workers. Being white and male helped. It put me in a higher caste even if no one thought of it that way The United States does have a caste system.

                I understand Sartre point of dealing with people being fake in their interaction with you. I still think Sartre was being a whiny baby. What else is the waiter supposed to do? Starve for this radical freedom of his? Never you mind that some places will fire you so fast you’d think it was at warp speed for even a hint of what they determine disrespect. Food and shelter are fantastic motivators to obey.

                1. ambrit

                  My experience in waiting tables was that there tended to be a very complex heirarchy of classes and status’s “behind the scenes” as it were. Where else is all that displaced emotion supposed to go? I have known very few, if any, perfectly balanced beings. (This could be a reflection on my limited perceptive ability, I don’t know for certain. All is flux and ambiguity.)
                  When I think of waiters as a class, I think of Emil Jannings hotel doorman in Murnau’s “The Last Laugh,” 1924.

                2. eg

                  I’ve heard this described as emotional labour. It features in a lot of public facing work beyond retail.

                  1. JBird4049

                    I haven’t thought about, but it can be tiring. Occasionally, more than doing hard, physical work at least for me. Spending effort on controlling every action to be just so, when you just want to express yourself.

          2. Jeremy Grimm

            Thank you for a confirmation of what I what I felt. I doubted my feelings were singular. Though my experiences were limited, they left powerful impressions.

          3. MonkeyBusiness

            As someone who had to pick up English, I haven’t found the language to be liberating. I am not even sure what that’s supposed to mean. I am not Japanese, but I am currently studying both Japanese and Chinese semi seriously and my teachers told me that I have reached at least the intermediate level in both of them. If we are just talking about the language side of things, then I actually found Japanese to be less restrictive than English. Japanese is a highly contextual language, so often times, you can omit pronouns like I, you, etc. Once you get more advanced, you’ll also be able to switch word orders around beyond the basic Subject Object Verb order.

            If I have to guess, when a Japanese says that speaking English is liberating, I am guessing it’s got something to do with class i.e. knowing English allows you to ignore some societal norms but only up to a point.

            1. PlutoniumKun

              I think this is the key point for Japanese (and many other Asians) with speaking a European language so I’ve been told. They find the release from identifying yourself relative to others to be liberating (I think this maybe applies more to women than men). Of course, all languages have this to some extent, including English, it’s just a little more formal in Japanese.

              I’ve found it amusing though that Japanese people say that Korean has far more rules than Japanese, while Koreans say exactly the opposite.

              1. Ian Perkins

                One Cambodian political party reportedly held its leadership meetings in English, as speaking Khmer requires addressing people as “younger son, with a middle-ranking job, of a high-ranking civil servant,” and so on, and getting it wrong can be seen as a sign of great disrespect. In English, one can simply say, “But you said …”

              2. MonkeyBusiness

                I am Asian. Asia itself is very big continent. Honestly I don’t get how a language can be liberating.

                1. PlutoniumKun

                  I don’t either, and its certainly an individual thing, but i’ve had several people in different contexts express it to me in this way.

        1. PlutoniumKun

          I’ve heard it said by quite a few people (not just Japanese or Asian) that they find speaking English to be liberating. I used to think that they meant that it was simply a way for some people to leave behind whatever troubles they had in their home country, but more and more I think it can be down to the language itself. I’ve a Vietnamese friend who says that she finds English much ‘looser’ and more forgiving than her native language, she’s told me she couldn’t imagine going back to speaking Vietnamese all the time.

          1. c_heale

            As an adult learner of Spanish (I am more or less fluent), I found Spanish liberating especially when expressing annoyance, exasperation, or resignation, without being angry. English now sometimes seems like an “angry” language to me. Imo it’s definitely true that particular emotions and feelings can be expressed better in different languages, and therefore it’s easier to feel them.

      2. Jeff W

        I’ve watched Paul Jorgensen’s video of the Irish language on his Langfocus channel and it struck me as, well, really difficult. (It makes Korean, reputedly a very difficult language for English speakers to learn, look like Esperanto, to me, anyway.)

        Jeremy Grimm:

        …he enjoyed speaking English because of the freedom he felt when he spoke it…

        I’ve heard the same thing from native Korean speakers. They say they don’t have to worry about the other person’s relative status when they speak. (You might also have to take into account the status, relative to the person you’re talking to and you, of a third person.) It’s almost impossible to make a sentence in Korean, other than “Yes” or “No,” without indicating some level of formality and politeness. Another thing is addressing people—it’s very impolite to address other higher-status people or strangers by “you” and, so, if you want to say something to someone you know nothing about (say, a stranger on the street), you have to figure out how to address him or her. (You can resort to 저기요! jeogiyo!—roughly, “Hey!” but without impolite connotation in English.)

        1. MonkeyBusiness

          I don’t know Korean, but I do know Japanese which is supposedly quite similar to Korean. In fact it’s often suggested that people should study Japanese and Korean together. In Japanese, the same things you pointed out do exist, but here’s the thing though, between friends, all the polite language will disappear, and you get to use the shorter more concise form of various language constructs.

          In other words, in societies like Korea and Japan, the language you use is often an indicator of how close/intimate you are to the people around you. There’s pros and cons to that, but what’s more important is that the change in the language you use with a person also serves as an indication of how far your relationship with him/her has progressed.

        2. PlutoniumKun

          Yes, its definitely one of the most structurally difficult of all European languages. To make it worse, its highly colloquial, even among the 50,000 native speakers left. Kerry people really struggle to understand Donegal Irish, and vice versa. People who learn ‘standard’ Irish can often understand neither.

      3. liam

        It’s beautiful also. Poetry runs right through it. Because we tend to learn through idiomatic translation, we can miss the literal, and hence the poetic. A simple one everyone knows is: An cois farraige, which in English is the seaside, but literally means, the sea’s foot.

        You are right about the changing nature of how it’s thought. My daughters experience is a whole lot better than I remember. Of course, it helps that there are also now a whole different level of resources for engaging with the language. There’s a Gael scoil (video) that does summer school, where they sing popular songs in Irish. I sing them with her also. It’s quite a joy. We also got copies of Tin Tin in Irish, amongst other things, (although we’ve a good bit of learning yet to enjoy reading them). I was also really pleasantly surprised to find that the population of the Gael Scoileanna has doubled in recent years. Ten percent of all primary school kids now learn through the language. And in some counties, even more – most notably Galway, where 25% do. I truly hope that continues.

        I mentioned Manchán Magan above. From a review of his book:

        In the book, as well as chapters positing whether the tales of Cú Chulainn might have been inspired by magic mushrooms and a comet, he explores the links between Arabic and Irish (which includes the word for shamrock – seamróg, from seamair/clover, which came from pre-Islamic Pagan Arabic, “shamrakh”, which means “three gods in one leaf”). He also dives into the fascinating connections between Irish and Sanskrit, and the parallels between systems of law, social hierarchy, divine worship and mythology in Irish and Hindu culture.

        Of the Irish spoken on the Blaskets, he writes: “It was a form of the language that retained traces of its roots in the Indus Valley in central Asia; you could hear echoes in their dialect of words and phrases that had veered off from Sanskrit, Persian and Hebrew millennia before.”

        1. PlutoniumKun

          The latest language materials look great. It might even persuade me to start relearning the language some day. Like many of my generation I was scarred for life by having to plough through Peig Sayers and her rambling monologues.

          Magan is a very interesting writer, I used to enjoy his articles in the Irish Times.

      4. c_heale

        As someone who learned Spanish as an adult, I would say my personality definitely changes when I speak it.

    5. juliania

      That is lovely, liam. And it’s why, even with my limited knowledge of ancient Greek, I like to check passages in the plays or poems for myself, because word order in sentences is so often not adhered to, and yet emphasis is so importantly lost thereby. And I remember being charmed reading ‘How Green Was My Valley’ as a teen, simply hearing the singing turn of phrase given the English language.

      Thank you.

      1. Eustachedesaintpierre

        Being English I don’t have any knowledge of the Irish language, but my Grandaughter flew the subject at school & enjoys using it. Personally I like the slang, particularly the use of the word Herself, which I think is much more suitable than English equivalents like the wife, the girlfriend, her indoors, the Missus, the trouble & strife etc, although I have heard it muttered in a negative way.

        Other great words like the use of Grand, Bollix, Gobshite & Thick which like Yoke confused the hell out of me when I first arrived & I will never forget the greeting I received shortly after, from a small boy as I rode past him on my bike through a small village called Multyfarnham, which went –

        ” How are yer; yer hoor yer ? “

        1. PlutoniumKun

          A lot of those are hiberno-English – very old English words and phrases that have been preserved in Ireland. Even Irish people think words like ‘craic’ are Irish, when they are in fact English words that have survived only in Ireland – ironically of course, its a word that has crept back into use in England and the US via Irish people.

  12. Bill Smith

    “Taiwan: how the ‘porcupine doctrine’ might help deter armed conflict with China”

    Starts off with this:

    “Coupled with recent violations of Taiwan’s sovereign airspace by Chinese warplanes, this has prompted widespread speculation on the island’s security.”

    Given the authors lack of understanding on this issue, the rest of the article is suspect.

  13. Wukchumni

    Goooooood Moooooorning Fiatnam!

    It all boiled down to the ‘skill-ratio’ back in the world, as far as Fiatnam went. Once upon a time, a CEO might’ve earned 20x what a rank & file clerk’s paycheck would amount to, but with much pluck and well placed luck, it was reported on the nightly news more recently that it was more along the lines of 400-1, so there was little doubt we were winning hearts & minds of like kind.

  14. Wukchumni

    Over there, over there
    Send the word, send the word over there
    That the yank is coming
    The market plummeting
    The HFT’s short-running
    So prepare, say a prayer
    Send the word, send the word to beware
    The bull market will be over, we’re talking over
    And it won’t come back as it’s over
    Over there

  15. Watt4Bob

    “These are self-consoling illusions of a lazy elite that has allowed America’s manufacturing, technological and education advantages to erode over the past 20 years – an elite that has nothing to say about reversing the decline.”

    “Allowed” doing a lot of work there.

    How about a little editing?

    “These are self-consoling illusions of a lazy elite that destroyed America’s manufacturing, technological and education advantages for profit, over the past 20 years – an elite that has nothing to say about reversing the decline.”

    Fixed it.

    1. Jeremy Grimm

      You are too kind to our Elite. They were industrious and creative in deliberately destroying America’s manufacturing, technological, and educational advantages as they extracted the most profit for themselves possible — mining and depleting the stored wealth of a score of past generations. They have nothing honest or meaningful to say about reversing the decline. They do not care about the decline, except as it affects their extractions. They can always move their extraction to other places after there is nothing left here. Besides, in the long run we will all be dead.

        1. Jeremy Grimm

          I am unsure how to regard your comment.

          Though we might make the most of our present, our life NOW, … does that make what the future might bring palatable? I have children and hopes for the Future.

          1. kgw

            What else are you going to transmit to your children but your life now? And, to those who see you now?
            And, what else are you?

            Don’t let your current understanding keep you from a greater understanding.

            1. ambrit

              Reminds me of a Pseudo Zen koan;
              Q: What is the sound of the Great Leap of Faith?”
              A: ‘Splat!’

      1. Oh

        We diss other countries for being poor but we grew rich on the back of the poor. First the Natives, then capitalizing on the World War, destroying half the world so we can finance their recovery and sell them our goods (using extraction of our resources). Later we used war to grab resources from others and still it goes on and the elites love it. USA, USA!

        1. drumlin woodchuckles

          What ” half of the world” did we destroy exactly? In World War II?

          And did we do it all by ourself?

        2. JP

          A little late in the day to comment but: Elites being a often used pejorative in comments on this site as well as other political labels, I have to suggest that plenty of lower middle down to “poor white trash” reveled in the fruits of neoliberal capitalism. Why spend money for something made well that will last when we can get Chinese crap on the cheap and throw it away when we are done. Not so much USA, USA but make America dominate again, subjugate thy neighbor. It’s pretty universal. Even the slaves want to stand on somebody’s head.

          Oops, you mean we sold ourselves down the river when we voted for Regan, Bush, Clinton. Can’t we make America Great again? Then there’s, why would I want to learn a trade? I have great social skills and should run the business or just sell the shit. Knowing how to make things is hard and doesn’t pay all that well. We are fat and happy. No need to learn skills. Drink beer, watch sports, coast down hill. We, not just the “elites or the PMC, did it to ourselves. I have to ask everyone dissing the elite if they can make a shoe or single point a thread on a lathe or fix their own appliance or build a house

          1. JBird4049

            Hmm, and all those skilled people who used to have decent jobs making and repairing stuff? Did they send their jobs away? Or rejoice in the creation of the Rust Belt?

            In my parents’ house everything was American made. I never heard my parents asking for cheap garbage. And over the past forty years It has been harder to find decent shoes for my bad feet at any price even when I have the money.

          2. cnchal

            > . . . if they can make a shoe or single point a thread on a lathe or fix their own appliance or build a house

            The elite characterize people that can do that as “unskilled”.

            Also, please be aware that the great sucking sound of shutting down making stuff here to have it made in China was Mall Wart’s doing to boost their stawk price in the mid 90’s to felate Wall Street. To compete, all else had to follow or die. I was there and manufacturers were told point blank, make it in China or no shelf space for you.

            Exactly like today with the extreme abuse that Amazon gets away with, all else have to match or beat Amazon’s abuse or die. Chinese working conditions have been replicated here. Wall Street approves, Bezos cashes in.

            The advice from the MSM is buy your Chinese crap now or you get coal in the stockings this Christmas. FFS two months later the stuff ends up in the dump.

            It is heartening to see globalization wreck itself, and the moar messed up the supply chains, the better.

      2. drumlin woodchuckles

        Yes. The Free Trade elite were very diligent and focused on destroying America through the means of Free Trade. They were not lazy about it. They worked very hard to achieve it.

  16. KLG

    The Woke, anachronistic and unimaginative as they are, get on my last nerve and their “cancel culture” is abominable, but regarding MFE versus DEI:

    We proposed instead ‘an alternative framework called Merit, Fairness, and Equality (MFE) whereby university applicants are treated as individuals and evaluated through a rigorous and unbiased process based on their merit and qualifications alone.‘”

    Professor Dorian Abbot (and host Bari Weiss): Please explain how this “rigorous and unbiased process based on…merit and qualifications alone” can work. Please show all of your supporting evidence. And if this includes scores above a bare minimum (25th percentile, for example) on the MCAT, LSAT, GRE, SAT, ACT, GMAT, DAT, just keep it to yourself.

    BTW, Michael Young’s satirical novel The Rise of the Meritocracy was still in print, last time I looked.

  17. Paradan

    So who wants to take a shot at guessing how much its gonna cost to fix the USS Connecticut?
    I’m gonna go with $150 Million.

  18. ObjectiveFunction

    > The hidden enemies in Xi’s midst

    Those interested in Chinese Kremlinology (Zhongnangaiology?) may wish to read the piece together with this short paper out of Indian think tank ORF (I make no representations as to the agenda of ORF – caveat emptor).

    It catalogues just how thoroughly Xi has recentered political power in China on himself, using the Party machinery. Skip to the last couple of data points if it’s too much theory.

    Digest follows:

    1. Since the foundation of Communist China the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has been highly factionalized.

    While factions represent specific socioeconomic and geographic constituencies, and consequently promote different policy agendas, links of personal patronage are paramount in how they operate.

    The two main factions have alternated their time in power, signified by which gets to appoint the CCP general secretary (who is also president of the PRC). However, power has been shared by keeping leaders of the opposing faction in the highest decision-making bodies.

    2. The Chinese bureaucracy involves two vertical hierarchies, the state and the party. These two vertical hierarchies are then replicated across the five levels of government: central, provincial, county, city, and township. Decision-making power rests in a series of hierarchical central party institutions and the power of factions rests in who controls these bodies.

    3. During the Civil War period, Mao established the Organisation Department to vet new Party members and determine their loyalty. Its role since 1949 is to dispense patronage in the form of both Party and government appointments, making it the key forum for CCP’s internal political battles.

    4. Deng and the revolutionary generation implemented the practice of ‘collective leadership’ in reaction to Mao’s personality cult. This helped China in opening up while preserving Party control in the Tiananmen crisis. However, it also promoted ‘one Party, two factions.’

    From 1989-2002, Jiang Zemin’s Shanghai Gang of ‘coastal elitists’ predominated, with close links to the emerging private sector {the tycoons}.

    From 2002-2012, Hu Jintao’s ‘Chinese Commmunist Youth League; (Tuanpai) faction of ‘populist’ provincial technocrats who came of age in the Deng era became ascendant. Li Keqiang is the tuanpai leader today.

    Red ‘princelings’ exist in both factions.

    5. Xi Jinping rose through the Shanghai gang, but during his political career he has succeeded in developing a dual image: princeling and populist.

    By the time Xi came to power, he had developed a deep fear that the key pillars of the state – the military (PLA), the state-owned enterprises (SOEs), the internal security apparatus, as well as the propaganda machine—were deeply corrupt and would result in the decline of the Party’s rule.

    Xi purged millions of officials, and thousands of high-ranking leaders of both factions, as well as the military, during his anti-corruption drive, starting with Chongqing tuanpai leader Bo Xilai.

    6. Replacing ‘collective leadership’ with ‘democratic centralism’, Xi has recentered decisionmaking power on himself using the Organization Department, effectively creating his own faction.

    He has replaced other faction leaders with party officials who have had a connection with himself at some point: childhood, Shaanxi exile, Tsinghua University, Hebei, Fujian, Zhejiang, and Shanghai.
    Approximately 60% (15 members) of the 19th Politburo have direct ties to Xi.

    Administrative experience gained by serving as a major city party secretary is a pivotal stepping stone to top posts in Beijing.

    The 6 cities that dominate the country’s economy – Tianjin, Beijing, Shenzhen, Shanghai, Chongqing, and Guangzhou – are now all run by Xi’s men.

    92% (57) of China’s provincial governors or mayors have been replaced since 2017.

    1. jo6pac

      That’s interesting this what V. Putin has done in Russia as he looks for the next Russia leader.


    2. Dftbs

      Chinese “Kremlinology” appears to be, much like it’s Soviet antecedent, a think-tank employment program.

      The interpretation of internal political re-arrangements in the PRC are seen through our ideological lens which can never ascribe legitimacy to non “western” governments. These actions aren’t so much Xi’s “purges” or power grabs and consolidations. Rather they are something that is wholly alien to “western” and particularly North American analysts: consequences for mismanagement and corruption.

      This mismanagement and corruption is largely present in the individuals with ties to prior Chinese administrations because it was during this time that China was enriching itself with US dollars. These individuals have outsized dollar denominated wealth and their mismanagement and corruption has often been a consequence of their attempts to preserve and grow this wealth. In the US and the west we are allowed to use public faculties to increase private wealth. In the PRC you are not. Hence the consequences.

      Reading Tea leaves to see what Xi is doing is as futile as trying to figure out who’s standing next to Andropov at a May Day parade. But I suppose international relations experts need to eat too.

      1. drumlin woodchuckles

        ” But I suppose international relations experts need to eat too.”

        Not that they deserve to.

    3. Kouros

      Nothing different from what you see in Chinese historical dramas, with the emperors, ministers, and the eunuchs vying for power an influence…

    4. PlutoniumKun

      There is an old joke in China-watching about the China expert who was asked what he thought of the current state of play in China. ‘I’ve no idea’ he said. ‘I’m just back from a 2 week vacation’.

      China has changed politically and economically with astonishing speed over the past few years (and not for the first time). Xi has been spectacularly successful in changing the structure of the way China is ruled in just a few years. He is impressive in his grasp of how to use power, and (so it seems) the challenges China must face if it is to escape the middle income trap. He has a lot of internal enemies, it remains to be seen if they have the ability to challenge him directly if things to wrong economically over the next few years.

      The big issue is that the previous structures were created precisely to prevent another Mao doing terrible damage through imposing his own personal idiosyncrasies on the entire country. Like Putin, Xi may be a very competent ruler who in the end paves the way for something much worse, by way of demolishing internal checks and balances.

    5. Jeff W

      This analysis brings back some memories.

      Back in 2012, after Chongqing’s Bo Xilai had been ousted, I wrote to a friend saying how Xi Jinping had close ties with the more “elitist” Shanghai Gang—as you point out, he “rose through” that clique—but he was actually part of the more “populist” Tsinghua Clique (to which the outgoing leader Hu Jintao also belonged), even though he is a princeling. So, basically, Xi had his political bases covered.

      And, while the Shanghai faction has been largely eclipsed since Xi’s ascension to power, there are hints that that faction is engaged in a power struggle with Xi even now.

    6. Jeremy Grimm

      I once wondered whether Japan might be the country most likely to take the u.s. place as Hegemon. I traveled there for a short time in the middle 1980s, only leaving Japan when my Visa neared its expiration. I left convinced that Japan was not a successor to the u.s. The Japanese were too insular to be a Hegemon — not that the u.s. is a paragon — only that the Japanese fall far short. I saw how they treated Koreans and Chinese who came to work there. I felt their animosities toward me as a foreigner, as an obvious citizen of the country that had wantonly ravaged their people and country in World War II, controlled their government, and as a Caucasian.

      I remember ordering some noddle soup in a small restaurant on the outer edges of Tokyo and receiving a fist sized piece of fish intestines in my soup. [I did try to bite and eat them, probably to the great amusement of the cook.] As I left that area I spotted, across the street, what appeared to be a younger gentleman in what might almost qualify as a zoot-suit minus the floppy hat. When he saw me, he made a low squat against the wall of a building he was passing. He ceremoniously lit a cigarette, as he looked up at me. Just to be sure I did not miss his meaning, he stood taking a few steps after lighting his cigarette. As he drew a puff, he stared seemingly aimlessly at me, and made another low squat against the wall. [There were Japanese toilets at the hostel where I stayed in Sinjuku.]

      Recalling this, I also recall the especially, and I sensed, truly kind feelings of the woman who worked at/owned the hostel where I was staying. I also recall she was very slightly darker in color than most of the Japanese I saw in Tokyo, and she had almost kinky hair. I wondered whether she were part Ainu. These spot impressions of Japan combined with what I had noticed of the way Japanese banks were investing in commercial properties in Dallas the years before my travel, and combined with the strange claims I had read that the Japanese made for the superiority of Kanji writing — granted a strange amalgam of biases — this amalgam in its sum lead me to doubt that Japan might ever become Hegemon.

      Now China is a new Japan, seemingly ready to step into u.s. shoes as Hegemon. A recent Chinese electronics purchase from Walmart, combined with some of the descriptions of Chinese building constructions, leaves me questioning whether China might be, or even wants to be more than the chief Hegemon in their own sphere. Both Japan and Korea went through stages of producing junk products to exploit the u.s. markets, and both were Draconian in making sure their products were of truly superior quality. It is very late in the game for China to be delivering products like the junk I received. I made no effort to return the device. It was truly exemplar of all the worst practices of bad engineering design — produced by what appeared to be a Chinese company making electronics in China. China is a country with numerous world-class electrical and electronic engineers. I kept the device and their truly remarkable instructions ‘describing’ uses for the device. [I remain hopeful some combination of operation sequence might achieve the simple action I purchased the device to accomplish.]

      1. MonkeyBusiness

        With all sorts of crises around the corner, “who is going to be the world’s hegemon?” might be a game that’s way past its sell date. It’s not just Japan, Korea, and China going through stages of producing junk products … the US used to do it too back in the days when the Brits were the world’s hegemon. Didn’t stop America from eventually becoming a world power.

        And yes, America also stole a ton of IP from the Brits.

      2. ObjectiveFunction

        Many astute comments on China here, thanks to all.

        And yes, it’s funny to compare all this ruthless maneuvering and purging with the China bullishness of the Goldman piece:

        A generation from now, the Chinese won’t remember the misery of Ant Financial, or the failure of property giant Evergrande, or this year’s power shortage, or any number of minor interruptions of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

        They will remember automated warehouses, smart ports running on 5G networks, mines operated by remote control, factories run by self-programming robots and driverless taxis.

        All of China’s major ports are at or close to full automation. Industrial automation, although impressive, is still in pilot phase.

        (Hmm, what’s Mandarin for ‘kill it with fire’?)

  19. Mo.B

    I suspect the booster advocates aren’t coming to an honest conclusion based on data. The data shows the levels of various antibodies decreasing exponentially from day 1, so that after 2 or 3 months 90% reduction. So where is the logic in boosters every 6 months? Shouldn’t we have boosters every 2 months at least?

    But no, that wouldn’t sell, would it? So it is a marketing thing in my opinion. At this point I am not convinced to get another booster.

  20. Alphonse

    We may be past the point where the vaccine and the virus are the greatest dangers:

    There is an all-out war with an enemy that has swept over us. The enemy is invisible, but that only makes it more dangerous. And under conditions like these, there are people who deliberately take sides with the enemy and must be treated accordingly.

    In times of war, such people were shot.

    But there will be no need to shoot the anti-vaxxers, I hope, they will die out on their own.

    I just saw this in account of a man in Lithuania who has refused the vaccine. Google translate confirms.

    He says:

    My wife and I have been suspended without pay for 4 weeks. We can’t return to our jobs. Not sure our employers would let us back. Even if they did, our colleagues despise us, wish on social media for our death. Nothing we can do will ever erase that. We can’t work there.

    There is more. Please read the thread.

    The quote above is by a former parliamentarian. The thread includes a similar statement from a former prime minister. Joe Biden and Justin Trudeau have set the example that it’s okay to blame the unvaccinated for the continuing pandemic.

    People are scared and they’re isolated – not only about the pandemic, but about the decline of America and the West. The want a reason, someone to blame. Blaming impersonal forces or untouchable powerful men won’t do it. They want a scapegoat. And they’ve been given one.

    The accusation invokes ancient terrors. The invisible threat to safety, traitors among us, the stab in the back, a war for survival, with us or against us, the need to purify the people: this is language that precedes murder, from the French Revolution to Weimar Germany to Soviet purges to the Cultural Revolution. Obviously those were much worse than anything that has happened: but how are the rhetoric and psychology any different? What sane society would take even one step down that path?

    Even if every accusation thrown at the unvaccinated were legitimate, would this be the answer? Has there ever been a historical moment when demonizing a chunk of the population was the right thing to do?

    For the record – I shouldn’t have to say this! – I chose the vaccine for myself and my family. But at this point, I think the benefits and risks of the vaccines are secondary. The real story, the real tragedy, is the alchemy that transforms morality into hate, and celebrates it.

    I recommend this interview with a psychologist about totalitarianism and the current moment.

    1. ambrit

      Your, “For the record..” says it all. The present power elites are conflating old style vaccines and the new mRNA vaccines. There is at present no solid evidence to declare the mRNA vaccines as safe and effective as the old style vaccines. A polio vaccination was good almost for life. A tetnus shot lasts for years and generally needs boosting every few years. The mRNA “vaccines” are being touted as good for only months! That doesn’t qualify as a vaccine in many people’s minds. That almost qualifies as similar to a course of anti-biotics.
      We are in complete agreement as to the essentially political motivations of the campaign of the “othering” of the vaccine “hesitant.” An ‘out group’ is being defined for later political convenience. The worst case scenario, which I suspect is the goal of the present power elites, is that a new and deadlier wave of a coronavirus variant sweeps the world. Then the masses can be diverted from placing blame where it truly belongs, and displaces all the rage and anger onto the previously manufactured ‘out group.’ The elites then sit back and pass judgement on the scapegoat population.
      This is one of those cases where I find that I cannot be cynical enough.
      Stay safe.

    1. Yves Smith Post author

      Study merely says they are detectable. Previously very large scale work in the UK on the less nasty wild type, which was pre vaccination, found that antibodies LEVELS, not mere presence, were consistent with 6-8 months of immunity.

      1. marku52

        It is also contradicted by that horrifying tweet from the researcher in Iran. Even in areas with almost 100% attack rates, wave after wave of covid came through. His position was that herd immunity is unattainable. Manaus also saw this. Even with over 70% seropositivity (detected in blood donations), new waves came through as if it was a virgin field.

        Scary stuff.

        1. The Rev Kev

          Tomorrow, the Australian State of New South Wales opens up because they passed the 70% double vaccination target. The media is happy about it because they can go to their favourite restaurants again and take that necessary plane trip to places like Paris. I have heard it referred to ‘Freedom Day’ though the new NSW premier has warned of “difficult time” ahead i.e. lots of dead people both now and going forward. Businesses have been fighting to make this happen by going with magic vaccines so we will see if it works out for them. Last I heard, they weren’t even going to bother with masks in the work place because being double-vaxxed makes you bullet proof, right?

          1. eg

            New South Wales might want to take a look at the Alberta, Canada experience. Their premier revoked all COVID restrictions in early July.

            It has not gone well …

  21. drumlin woodchuckles

    ” Biden to restore 3 National Monuments cut by Trump”.

    The next Republican nominee will run on re-shrinking or even abolishing those National Monuments.
    So the next Democratic nominee can run on maintaining those National Monuments in existence throughout his/her term(s) in office.

    Does restoring the former size of these National Monuments matter? Well, these National Monuments matter to the lives of members of Indian Nations. Do Indian Lives Matter?

    If they do, then that is perhaps a good enough reason to vote Democratic next general election. Perhaps we should admit that under the current 2 Party Monopoly System, nothing will ever get any better. Things will only get worse faster, or less fast.

    And if that is the case, and the choice, then people who want “something better” will have to create an unforgiving unrelenting Better Culture Movement capable of waging and winning a Civil Better Culture War. And if things have gotten bad less fast by the time we can win that Civil Better Culture War, then we will have a few more stubs and relics to work with and regrow/rebuild out from than if things have gotten bad more fast by the time we can win that Civil Better Culture War. And if that is the case, then perhaps we should view keeping Democrats in office and Republicans out of office as staging a long strategic retreat and keeping it orderly until we have something to destroy and exterminate the Two Parties with. We should perhaps view it as our own Long March in the hopes of winning a Civil Better Culture War victory at the end of it, and then forcing through a better politics and better policy against the losing side of that Civil Better Culture War.

  22. Soredemos

    >Biden signs ‘Havana Syndrome’ law, Berlin police report new ‘cases’ blamed on mystery weapons scientists say don’t exist RT

    They’re really intent on dragging out this dumb subplot, aren’t they?

  23. Soredemos

    >Why do people worry about deficits? Noah Smith

    “Theory 3: People just don’t want more social spending”

    I’ve run into this one personally. After finding “it’s our tax money” wasn’t working, the person I was talking to immediately switched to “well poor people don’t deserve it”.

  24. flora

    Latest from Ed Snowden. No paywall. A long and very good article.

    Your Money and Your Life

    “Neither is a Central Bank Digital Currency a State-level embrace of cryptocurrency—at least not of cryptocurrency as pretty much everyone in the world who uses it currently understands it.

    “Instead, a CBDC is something closer to being a perversion of cryptocurrency, or at least of the founding principles and protocols of cryptocurrency—a cryptofascist currency, an evil twin entered into the ledgers on Opposite Day, expressly designed to deny its users the basic ownership of their money and to install the State at the mediating center of every transaction”

    1. drumlin woodchuckles

      It sounds like it would be a Total Information Awareness cryptocurrency.

      If it were forcibly instituted, people would find what way they could partway around it, in preference to violent rebellion against it.

      1. flora

        Now that you mention the old Total Information Awareness (TIA) intel dream, yes, you could be right. A lot of the “for your own safety” pandemic proposed mandates sound like they fit in with the Total Information Awareness dream, (squelched by public uproar when first proposed but slowly and piece-by-piece getting implemented over time).

        Also, I don’t think any billionaire or oligarch would be subject to the new digital currency rules by necessity. / ;)

        “The law, in its majestic equality, forbids rich and poor alike to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal their bread.”

        ― Anatole France

        1. drumlin woodchuckles

          I remember one time many years ago I saw a little web-advertisement offering various Total Information Awareness branded stuff and swag. I thought it was funny at the time. In hindsight I should have bought some.

          Coffee mugs with the Flying Cyclops Eye Pyramid on them and other neat stuff.

    2. eg

      With due respect to Snowden, I think he’s a little confused. Currencies belong to the state. Ever seen any money with YOUR picture on it? That ought to be a clue right there.

  25. The Rev Kev

    “Britain eyeing new trade deal with Gulf countries”

    Trying to think of what trade could be done with the Gulf countries that would substitute for what they lost to the EU when I suddenly relied. Weapons. Lots and lots of weapons and in fact the article mentions the billions of pounds of arms exports to Saudi Arabia. Certainly the constellation of servicing contracts will help keep the Gulf countries within the influence of London. Look at what happened to Afghanistan’s armed forces when their western contractors were pulled out for example.

  26. allan

    The rich are different from you and me … they work in administration:

    UMich President Schlissel to be paid full presidential salary two years after resignation [Michigan Daily]

    University of Michigan President Mark Schlissel signed a contract with the Board of Regents on Sept. 23 guaranteeing that he will be paid his same salary of $927,000 for two years after his resignation in June 2023, according to a copy of the contract obtained by The Michigan Daily.

    Schlissel announced Tuesday that he will resign in June 2023, a year earlier than originally planned. The Board of Regents and Schlissel held a public meeting on Sept. 23 but made no mention of Schlissel’s planned resignation or the signing of a new contract. [but why should the little people be told?] …

    Per the terms of the contract, as President Emeritus, the University will give Schlissel $36,000 per fiscal year “to be used in (his) discretion to support (his) activities as President Emeritus.” He will also be given an office space on Central Campus, a parking space and an office assistant. The money, office and office assistant will be for an initial term of seven years through July 1, 2030, with automatic renewal every three years unless terminated or modified by the Board of Regents. [a/k/a for life] …

    In his first year after resignation, Schlissel will serve as a special advisor, working under the Board of Regents to “promote the interests of the University, support a new president in ensuring a successful transition, and perform other reasonable, appropriate duties,” according to the contract. While Schlissel serves as special advisor, he will be paid his current presidential salary and also receive a monthly $5,000 housing allowance, as he must move out of the presidential house on South University no more than 30 days after ending his presidency. …

    After he finishes his term as special advisor, he can go on leave for one year — paid at the rate of his current presidential salary. …

    Per the terms of the contract, the University will provide Schlissel with a $2 million starting fund — which he can begin using while serving as special advisor — to establish a research laboratory for his tenured faculty position. His salary as a tenured faculty member will be at least 50% of his current presidential salary. …

    So, $4 million in the first two years and at least $496,00 per year thereafter.
    Who does this guy think he is, a football coach?

    1. The Rev Kev

      James Howard Kunstler will have a fit as well. It’s a shame that. Both Lang and Kunstler have gone off the deep end the past few years with their work, and why? Because Trump broke their brains, that’s why. And that is true of a lot of people in the media, on social networks, etc. and in a way that may have been a good thing. What I mean by that is how people reacted to Trump became a sort of touchstone of those whose thinking & analytical skills kept intact and those for whom it only ran skin deep or whose best years were behind them.

      1. Soredemos

        I don’t think either has really changed in recent years. Kunstler has always been an occasionally insightful dick. And Lang has always been an extreme conservative, to the point of often being comically reactionary. Lang is useful for military matters, because that’s his profession. I’ve never paid much attention to his opinions outside of that sphere.

  27. The Rev Kev

    “Italian sailors knew of America 150 years before Christopher Columbus, new analysis of ancient documents suggests”

    Methinks that word got around the Mediterranean taverns about reported sightings of land by Scandinavian (read Viking) mariners to the west. There must have been a lot of travel back and forth with trade ships from the Mediterranean and Scandinavia so perhaps the stories of these early Norse seafarers was recorded and maps drawn up which were brought back to Italy.

    1. drumlin woodchuckles

      Several decades ago I read in a book called Follow The Whale by Ivan T. Sanderson that Basque fishermen knew about Newfoundland and the cod fishery there for at least a century before Columbus, but they tried to keep the details secret for business reasons. They would allude to an ” Island of Stockfishes”.

      Perhaps we should craft a compromise name for the day . . . Columbus Indigenous Day of Reflection.

    1. wilroncanada

      lance ringquist
      Canada’s job totals in September passed the peak of pre-pandemic employment in 2019. Yet, there are ‘help wanted’ signs in just about every small store, supermarket, restaurant (those not closed due to reported lack of employees), ski hill ( today, one nearby reported a shortage of 400 staff to enable start-up next month), farm, and factory. In addition, the Province of BC is looking for hundreds of doctors and nurses along with ancillary staff (as is just about every jurisdiction in Canada), ambulance drivers and paramedics, and 911 operators, not to mention police, fire, prison guards and other security staff.
      Where did all those prospective employees go?

  28. VietnamVet

    Barrack Obama — “A Company Family” is really interesting. I just found out that I was literally within miles of his mother in the 1960s in Seattle, Hawaii and Indonesia. It is long gone now. But it was a time to be the vanguard of a new world. I was accused of being a CIA agent to my face but I wasn’t. We sat around drinking Anchor Beer wondering why did the US government spent all that money to send us to S.E. Asia. We decided that if the government ever needed someone who knows very well an obscure corner of the world they had us. But this is clearly false. The Vietnam War, inflation, and the corporate counter-revolt made it pointless. The last thing profiteers want or need is experts telling the truth, only what sells.

    With 5 points from serving in the U.S. Army and previous government employment, I moved across country to become a low-rung technocrat, isolated in suburbia, now retired, dependent on my government pension to survive, and told obvious lies by officialdom. Lies that I did not acknowledge until the Obama Administration overthrew the elected government of Ukraine. A series of big lies that surpass the best that the Soviet Union ever did. A propaganda campaign not to eradicate coronavirus but to sell as many mRNA jabs as possible but are so leaky they make vaccine mandates and passports pointless.

    If you are connected to money, an Insider, or a paid manager who believes the propaganda to get ahead, profits are all that matters, nothing else. Not the lives of others.

  29. a fax machine

    “China’s fourth revolution”

    Gibberish. AI isn’t happening, at least not in a way the west has not already thoroughly exploited of all use. I’m specifically thinking of high-frequency trading which is now standard across all US financial markets. Ditto in other contexts, especially transportation, where the US is the only country with a fully computerized railroad network, a fully computerized/standardized ATC network, and adaptive cruise control (“self driving” for the uninformed) optionable in most new car models. Most of this is Made In America – for better and for worse. The increased train telemetry leads to longer, arguably more dangerous trains (at least with a reduced crewing level), the increased HFT is steroids for our bubble economy and the cruise control lets stupid people drink while driving. This isn’t a revolution – it’s evolution, including the cultural evolution of Americans into fatter, more obese slobs as all of this is in the service of getting them enough corn syrup at mcdonalds.

    China has copied this -poorly- and their experiments with it are ending as their experimentation with capitalism becomes increasingly untenable. Ditto for the entire world. This is the real fourth revolution, it’s a revolution within human minds not a computer’s.

    (I apologize for the fat shaming but honestly, what else has such technology enabled?)

  30. eg

    Why do people fear deficits? Because of the widespread poor understanding of the origins, purpose and history of money, let alone sovereign fiat monetary operations.

Comments are closed.