Links 3/2/2022

Yves here. Links is launching with short rations due to needed to read too much on Ukraine plus some estate duties. Will be up to normal by 8:00 AM EST, so please return then if you are an early visitor.

The Mysterious Origins of King Tutankhamen’s Space Rock Dagger Just Got Clearer Science Alert (Chuck L)

Meet the security guards moonlighting as curators at the Baltimore Museum of Art NPR (Chuck L)

Researchers create molecule that can pave way for mini-transistors PhysOrg (Chuck L)

Exercise can build up your brain. Air pollution may negate those benefits. New York Times (Robert M)

AI-Designed Protein Awakens Silenced Genes, One By One PhysOrg. Recall that there’s evidence that the effects of stress and deprivation have physical effects on descendants. IIRC that it due to gene expression. This article even acknowledges that fooling with epigenetic markers will effect progeny.

The Varieties of Bullshit Peter Ludlow (Anthony L)


Respiratory infections like whooping cough and flu have plummeted amid COVID. But ‘bounce back’ is a worry Medical Press


Peripheral Neuropathy Evaluations of Patients With Prolonged Long COVID Neurology




Covid-19 Hospitalizations Are Down, but Nurse Shortages Remain


Wildfires send giant cloud of ash across southern Paraguay Guardian

Authoritarian Nationalism—and Western Militarism—Are Climate Problems New Republic

Old Blighty

Campaigners call for action over UK’s ‘shameful’ lung health Guardian (Kevin W)

New Not So Cold War

Russian forces close in on Ukraine’s capital as death toll mounts CBS (resilc). I hate to be a stickler, but still way lower than average annual civilian casualties since 2014 in Donbass. Also: “The U.K. foreign secretary estimated it would be a 10-year war. Lawmakers at the Capitol were told Monday it is likely to last 10, 15 or 20 years — and that ultimately, Russia will lose.”

U.S. to Ban Russian Flights From American Airspace Wall Street Journal

Reports That Ukraine Is About To Get 70 Donated Fighter Jets Don’t Add Up The Drive (OnceWereVirologist)

CLINT EHRLICH: SITREP FOR DAY 4 OF UKRAINE WAR Natylie Baldwin (jo6pac). Sitrep dated but high level observations germane.

Nobody Wants Russian Assets Matt Levine, Bloomberg

U.S. has its knee to the neck of Europe in the form of NATO: an interview 1 March with Radio Belarus Gilbert Doctorow. Key points:

…the struggle is, in the last analysis, about expanding and enhancing NATO or smashing it to pieces…the freezing of Bank of Russia assets in the West remains without a response, as does the partial exclusion from SWIFT. This is not for lack of options on the Russian side to inflict extreme pain on the West. The confiscation of all Western corporate assets in Russia would largely balance the frozen Russian assets in the West. The shut-off of gas and oil supplies, of uranium for French and other European power plants, and of still other essential raw materials that are largely or even exclusively sourced in Russia would be very damaging to the European economies. None of this has been done because the Russians expect to finish up their business in Ukraine rather soon, and then to negotiate a gradual return to normality with the West.

The $300bn question facing central banks Financial Times. Important. Subhead: “The sanctions on the Central Bank of Russia’s securities may prompt other countries to reassess how and where they hold their wealth.”

Can Europe Replenish Its Depleting Gas Inventories? OilPrice (resilc)

Black Sea Insurance Rates Soar As NATO Fails To Protect Commercial Shipping qCaptain (Chuck L)

Here are all the Western companies severing ties with Russia Quartz (Kevin W)

Russian Dollar-Mortgage Holders Feel Ruble Crunch Radio Free Europe

Follow the money: how Russia will bypass western economic warfare The Saker. Kevin W: “Read the last bit where he talks about patents. That is….stunning. What is the US going to do about it? Sanction Russia?”

OPERATION BARBAROSSA IN SLOW MOTION — THIS IS THE OFFENSIVE CAPACITY THE US WAS PREPARING IN THE UKRAINE UNTIL LAST WEEK John Helmer. Scroll down to see the map for the results of the 2019 elections in Ukraine.

Jail Time for Czechs Agreeing With Russian Intervention Consortium News (Kevin W)

Envoys of 40 nations walk out during Sergei Lavrov’s speech to UN rights forum SBS News (Kevin W)

Ukraine: Watching the war on Russian TV – a whole different story BBC (Jules). This is telling in ways NC readers might appreciate. Also gives impression that TV is where Russians get their information, when Deloitte found that social media use in Russia (barely) exceeds TV viewership. Readers in Russia say Russian Twitter and other social media have a full spectrum of views, including anti-Putin ones.

From Politico’s morning European newsletter:

​​RT, SPUTNIK SET TO BE SHUT DOWN IN THE EU: Kremlin-backed media outlets RT, formerly known as Russia Today, and Sputnik are today set to be taken off the air and offline in the EU. After EU countries gave their green light to the Commission’s proposal on Tuesday, the sanction will be published in the Official Journal this morning, effectively empowering national media regulators to crack down on RT and Sputnik.

Apple Halts Product Sales in Russia, Makes RT and Sputnik Unavailable Outside of Russia Macrumors

Ukraine Proposes ICANN Remove Russian Domains The Register. Lambert pointed out that the block on the Kremlin site was a high level DNS intervention since it also affected the Wayback Machine and had to be done by a party with a lot of juice. And that means not Ukraine.

As Russia’s isolation grows, China hints at limits of friendship Al Jazeera (furzy). Nations are not friends. They have interests. China has leverage over the US. It knows it has the opportunity to get leverage over Russia too.

Why Wouldn’t the US Negotiate With Putin?

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

Cryptographers Achieve Perfect Secrecy With Imperfect Devices Quanta (Robert M)

Russian Cybersecurity Giant Kaspersky Tries To Maintain Neutrality During Ukraine War Vice

Imperial Collapse Watch

How the Narcotic of Defense Spending Undermines a Sensible Grand Strategy CounterPunch (resilc)


Biden condemns Putin, projects unity in State of Union address The Hill

Key Takeaways From Biden’s State of the Union Wall Street Journal

Full Transcript of Biden’s State of the Union Address New York Times. Kevin W: “He said worldwide that 60 million barrels of oil are being released from reserves. For the US, that is about 3 days worth.” Moi: With Russia heretofore providing about 10% of US oil, that’s 30 days of the shortfall.

Biden’s Promise of Better Nursing Home Care Will Require Many More Workers Kaiser Health News

GOP leader won’t condemn Greene, Gosar with cameras rolling The Hill

Greg Abbott, Beto O’Rourke win nominations for Texas governor in first midterm contests Washington Post (furzy)

In Texas Primary, Democratic Socialist Greg Casar Prevails Intercept

Cargo ship bringing cars to RI sinks in Atlantic Ocean WPRI (Kevin W)

Wirecard Scandal Spurs European Commission Consult to Enhance the Quality and Reliability of Corporate Reporting in Europe Market Integrity Insights. Adrien F:

Fascinating to me that it is the Wirecard scandal which is triggering all these proposed a problem that was already exposed by DB’s massive financial misrepresentations.. sending the stock from 60 euros initially to 7 bucks..DB was just better at papering its losses over time..and getting help..and not imploding in flash. but the magnitude of the shenanigans dwarfs what Wirecard did..

Ship carrying 4,000 luxury cars sinks off the Azores BBC

Even In the Metaverse, You Can’t Escape the Taxman ars technica. I didn’t realize Second Life was still A Thing.

Corporate insecthood Cognition

$10 toothpaste? U.S. household goods makers face blowback on price hikes Reuters

U.S. Moving to Confront China on Trade, Industrial Policy Wall Street Journal. With inflation set to go higher due to the confrontation with Russia? Can’t they chill for at least a year?

Your giant SUV or pickup could kill someone, you know it, and you should drive something else: A manifesto. Slate (resilc)

Class Warfare

‘We can’t punish our way to safer medical practices’: 2 experts on criminalization of medical errors Becker. The headline comes off as class special pleading. A criminal standard would presumably require intent or egregious negligence. The article may be the result of case law not being settled.

Antidote du jour. Tracie H: “Dazzler, the Red Poodle puppy.”

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here

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  1. Sardonia

    “Lawmakers at the Capitol were told Monday (the war in Ukraine) is likely to last 10, 15 or 20 years — and that ultimately, Russia will lose.”

    The article doesn’t say who it was who told them this. Could be that Raytheon has hired Nostradamus as their new lobbyist.

      1. Marva

        Unless, this woman gets elected president, or vice president.

        Tulsi Gabbard’s full CPAC speech:

        She is going to run. Young, rank of major, veteran of Iraq, bright, multilingual and adored by the progressive left and the conservative right and a growing segment of what’s left of the middle class and Bernie supporters.

        Watch the power elite squirm when she’s mentioned.

        1. Michaelmas

          Watch her get summarily ignored and dismissed by the MSM, then flattened and even killed if necessary when she gains traction despite that.

          Do you imagine you live in a real democracy?

          1. Mr. House

            Kinda like the way they treated people who disagreed with their it which shall not be named response? Its funny how many don’t connect the dots or at least see a similar motive. Why is it acceptable in one instance but not in another?

          2. Carlos

            Paraphrasing the old anti war poster:

            “What would they do if they had a war and no one came?”

            “What would they do if they had a tax-filing season and no one who owed money filed”?”

        2. cobo

          Joe Rogan for President with Tulsi Gabbard for Vice-President in an independent party run – I’m saying it first

    1. PlutoniumKun

      The first part may be correct, the second possibly not correct.

      Vast amounts of the arms pouring into Ukraine are not going into the regular army. Its going into the hands of fringe (mostly far right) groups and gangsters. You could well see Ukraine falling into chaos similar to the former Yugoslavia, except right in the heart of Europe. The Russians won’t feel an obligation to fix the problem – if a failed state ends up in the lap of Nato/US/EU, then thats a problem solved for them, especially if they keep the eastern provinces.

      The Russians would prefer a united, stable, neutral Ukraine, but a Yugoslavia situation is not a bad result for them. But a terrible one for the rest of Europe. I suspect this is one reason why its the British, Dutch and US that are pouring in Javalins and other weaponry, not Ukraines immediate neighbours. They are more acutely aware of what can happen.

        1. Synoia

          The US wins again, by eliminating EU competition.

          Beware of Greeks (and Others) bearing gifts, and adds a reason for US tacit support for that Island off Europe to Brexit the EU’

      1. Kevin Smith

        I think it is HIGHLY likely that the Javelins, Stingers, et al have a variety of built in safeguards these days [geofences, self-destruct at a certain date, etc]

        1. PlutoniumKun

          The problem is that these weapons are US made, but being delivered via third parties such as the UK and the Netherlands. So they may not necessarily have the full range of built in safeguards.

          Also, the UK is supplying NLAWs, which are potentially very effective insurgent weapons, but are fairly unsophisticated (the missiles are unguided). So they may not necessarily have those safeguards, or they may be easier to bypass. Plus, geofences restrict where they can be fired, but not who they can be fired at.

          It would be nice to think they will not be misused because ‘safeguards’. But…. well, history suggests its not that simple.

          1. The Rev Kev

            I still remember the panic in US circles after the Russians pulled out of Afghanistan about all those loose Stinger manpads that were still in circulation. I’ll let Wikipedia take up the story here-

            ‘The last Stingers were supplied in 1988 after increasing reports of fighters selling them to Iran and thawing relations with Moscow. After the 1989 Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan, the U.S. attempted to buy back the Stinger missiles, with a $55 million program launched in 1990 to buy back around 300 missiles (US$183,300 each). The U.S. government collected most of the Stingers it had delivered, but by 1996 around 600 were unaccounted for and some found their way into Croatia, Iran, Sri Lanka, Qatar, and North Korea. According to the CIA, already in August 1988 the U.S. had demanded from Qatar the return of Stinger missiles. Wilson later told CBS he “lived in terror” that a civilian airliner would be shot down by a Stinger, but he did not have misgivings about having provided Stingers to defeat the Soviets.’


            1. Polar Socialist

              […]he did not have misgivings about having provided Stingers to defeat the Soviets.

              They did not defeat the Soviets. Four months after the first shot Soviet Special Forces had captured 2-3 launchers and a complete manual. Soviets immediately installed several countermeasures (flares, better cooling of the exhaust etc) to helicopters and within the same year the mujahideen had practically ceased to use Stingers.

              But it’s a “nice” story. Of the more morbid kind.

              1. Tor User

                No one thing ended up making the cost high enough for the Soviets to leave Afghanistan. But Stingers certainly contributed.

                After the first shoot downs the Soviets did change things as you note. And when later Soviet aircraft where downed, the CIA paid for the parts that could be recovered. Flares for instance, at which point the Stingers’ seeker was adjusted. And the Soviets then adjusted again, etc.

                The big thing the Stingers did was make the Soviet aircraft operate most of the time at higher altitudes than before the Stingers arrived. This made close air support much harder.

                We have somewhat of difference of opinion on the use of Stingers in the following two years. They did not see as much use. But was that because the Soviets where flying higher than the Stingers could reach?

          2. Tor User

            NLAW is somewhat guided:

            “For a moving target, the gunner maintains tracking for three seconds, training the missile’s guidance electronics to compute the target’s angular speed. After launch the missile flies autonomously to the target making the necessary corrections according to the data acquired by the tracking.”

        2. Polar Socialist

          I doubt any soldier would use a weapon that refuses to operate unless it can fix it’s location. You want them to go boom when you pull the trigger, every time.

          But maybe we will find out. I’ve seen some pictures by DNR militia with piles of captured NLAWs and Javelins. In one they, in jest, thanked West for the supply.

      2. David

        These deliveries are almost certainly the result of governments saying “we must do something, this is something, we’ll do it” rather than any conscious analysis. It’s essentially a political gesture, in the absence of any meaningful military one. The weapons are sophisticated man-portable point anti-tank missiles, not something you can just pick up and fire, and usually operated by a crew of 2. Wikipedia suggests that US troops using the missile have two weeks’ training, and that seems reasonable given its complexity. It’s not clear where the training will come from, and of course the missiles require their own support and maintenance. So I suppose you could theoretically see some units fielded before the end of the month, and that in turn suggests that the West is planning, or at least hoping, for a long war. On the plus side, the average terrorist wouldn’t be able to do much more with a weapon like that than use it as a club.

        1. Ahimsa

          Once again, the logical fallacy of, “we must (be seen to) do something” strikes.

          Oh well, I guess it’s “oops”, if that something makes the situation worse.

          1. Cat Burglar

            Samantha Power lauded one of her mentors as a man that spent all his time “thinking about what America could do” — this is what they do.

        2. upstater

          I would expect there are plenty of retired US or NATO military willing and able to spend months in Galicia for 7 figure compensation. This assumes they hadn’t already been there. /s .

          Contractors were essential to keep Afghanistan going for 10, 15, no… 20 years.

          I don’t think that is a viable strategy in these times.

          BTW, Great graphics and photos in Helmer’s link, not to mention content.

          1. The Rev Kev

            I’m betting that there are special forces from countries like the US, UK, etc. running around the Ukraine and helping them with their expertise and even attacking Russian troops. They did the same alongside the Jihadists in Syria against government armour after all. And in the 2008 Georgian war too come to think of it where at least one of them was captured.

        3. Tor User

          Doesn’t it depend on how widespread the training has been with the Javelins that got delivered since 2018? Entire drafts of the Ukrainian Army have come and gone since then.

          Each draft would likely have had some people trained on the system.

      3. Carlos

        Video on Youtube by TEW, very balanced, showing people standing in front of tanks, selling groceries, no money accepted, to Russians shopping for candybars, bombs going off, resistance and acceptance of occupying troops, mostly kids, and to your comment,
        an American describing how Zelenskyy let criminals out of prison and gave them high powered weaponry “to fight the Russians.”

        Unfortunately, they are gang members who started fighting other gang members and began robbing the populace. All part of the CIA program of creating a new Afghanistan it looks like.

      4. Rodeo Clownfish

        “You could well see Ukraine falling into chaos similar to the former Yugoslavia, except right in the heart of Europe.”

        Is Ukraine located closer to “the heart of Europe” than Yugoslavia was?

    2. Bandit

      It should read, “Lawmakers at the Capitol and war industries are hoping (the war in Ukraine) will last 10, 15 or 20 years — and that ultimately, Russia will lose.”
      Wishful thinking…

        1. juno mas

          Well, if the dollar loses its singular reserve currency status, imports are likely to cost more…and the populace will go “broke”.

    3. deplorado

      Hilary Clinton said it a couple days ago. The idea is to fund an insurgency in Ukr and ensnare and bleed Russia indefinitely going forward, a la ussr-Afghanistan 1979-89. So yes, 10+ years is likely, and how Russia can overcome that I don’t know. I don’t think Putin can – so I believe lawmakers have ve been told correctly.

      Of course this means Ukr will run into Syria. Nothing good about any of it. Ukr is finished, and at the end of this, Russia will be likely finished too.

      I think we’ll come to see the Cold War as a golden era of albeit tense but actual global peace and stability, compared to what is likely to come out of this disaster.

      I blame for all of this Gorbachev.

      1. britzklieg

        Russia will be likely finished too?

        uh… no, because before “Russia is finished” the world would likely end and if it didn’t, the west would not be the one left standing. imho

        and what’s that part about Syria?

        Don’t look now, we lost, Assad won, and Russia was the sane actor that made sure that happened.

      2. tegnost

        Basing your hopes on hillary’s future plans maybe not such a great idea.
        It seems to me russia is using tactics we wouldn’t use, so naturally we can’t understand them.
        Also it means our projections regarding how things will turn out are probably wrong, but I’m not a military strategist, YMMV.

    4. Mishegoss

      My astrologically-inclined wife says, “Nah, Nostradmus supposedly predicted shit hits the fan for Putin around April 5th and that’s sorta it for him.”

      I haven’t had time to pour over the data to confirm.

      1. Yves Smith Post author

        My one astrological contact says that the time he used to launch the war = total victory (that does not mean he wins the peace, just that engagement) and that the war also was on the US’ Pluto return (2/22/22). From the NY Post:

        Plutonian energy is very often malefic — bringing forth dramatic and painful experiences in order to shed light on truth and bring us incredibly profound growth. On one hand, Pluto can provide tremendous opportunities for renewal, new beginnings and spiritual and financial growth. However, the negative aspects of this mighty planet often lead to obsession, victimization, domination, power struggles, tyrannical control, war and death…

        No human on Earth has ever experienced a Pluto return because our life spans are much shorter than the 248-year cycle of this mighty planet. However, empires and nations have experienced them — and many have seen multiple Pluto returns. While turmoil, scandals and times of upheaval often occur during a Pluto return, they often provide a very important turning point for the nation or empire to assess everything that it has created in the previous cycle while burning down what isn’t working to prepare for a whole new era.

        In history, we can see that the Roman Empire experienced its first Pluto return between 218 and 220 A.D. This period had dramatic leaders and intense shifts in power, along with significant scandal and death. The Roman Empire’s second Pluto return arrived between 461 and 468 A.D. — just eight short years prior to the official fall of the Roman Empire in 235 A.D….

        The British Empire experienced three transformational Pluto returns — one during the Great Famine in 1315 A.D., followed by another at the start of the Elizabethan era and arrival of the golden age of British literature, and the last during the official creation of the United Kingdom that took place in 1801….

        Pluto will return to the exact same position it was in when the United States was born on three dates in 2022: Feb. 22, July 11 and Dec. 28.

        I am told Pluto demands transformation, getting rid of structures and behaviors that no longer work and reforming/evolving. Resisting the demands of Pluto results in upheaval and self-destruction.

        That does not mean things will work out well in a longer time frame for Russia or Putin (as in the war could be a lose-lose), but if you believe star-gazers, this is a very perilous time for the US.

  2. jr

    I for one was stunned to see via the SOTU comments that Uranus had been invaded last night. Truly dark times. Hopefully, this will trigger the Galactic Federation to finally step in and take the reigns of power from these fools. Set up a puppet government so Biden can take a nap and dig into those back episodes of American Teens got Talent! Spend more time getting to know the Beau that lives in the mirror…

      1. Eustachedesaintpierre

        Coincidentally Uranus was the name given to the 1942 Soviet offensive that led to the encirclement of Stalingrad.

  3. The Rev Kev

    “Can Europe Replenish Its Depleting Gas Inventories?”

    Yeah, nah! The reality of what the EU has done is finally striking home and as Philip K. Dick once wrote, “Reality is that which when you stop believing in it, it doesn’t go away.” So already European futures have soared past $2,200 per 1,000 cubic meters for gas. How high can they go? “To the Moon, Alice!”

    I am afraid that the US may not dodge this bullet either. Old Joe is deciding whether to sanction Russian uranium which is used to power US nuclear plants – about half of them. If he pulls the trigger on this one at Ukrainian prodding, you can expect to see electricity costs go skyrocketing in some States too-

    1. Louis Fyne

      there literally are not many free molecules to buy/ship due to capacity, existing contracts, etc. People in DC think buying more LNG is like buying more organic oat milk off the shelf.

      An establishment that has zero idea how a physical economy works.

      1. Michael McK

        The oat milk has been unavailable at my store for a couple weeks and yesterday there was a closeout sale tag over the empty shelf space so we may be in more trouble than even you think.

    2. Werther

      Site shows natural gas price almost at december height: “in fortissimo rialzo”… (02/03 15:00 h)
      Pressure on Dutch government to increase Groningen production will rise (to the detriment of shaky Groningen real estate…)

    3. Charlie Sheldon

      As someone who spent a few years (2012-2016) banging around at sea aboard commercial ships I couldn’t help but notice LNG facilities in many foreign ports – Damietta Eqypt, Jebel Ali in the Persian Gulf. But in the US? There are a few, one in Alaska, a few in the Gulf, but… After the Energy Crisis in the 70s there was a flurry to go to LNG and the first such ships were built, hugely expensive, complex. Right now in Tacoma Washington where I live there is a huge pissing match going on about a small gas storage facility on the waterfront to a) fuel cargo ships going to Alaska and b) store gas for industrial and residential use, and of course residents are freaking out for fear of explosion and dirty fossil fuels, etc etc. I think an effort has been underway to build an LNG facility in Astoria Oregon or somewhere nearby; again, lots of froth but no action. I am old enough to remember when, in New England, where I was living at the time working as a commercial fisherman, there were fears the supply of natural gas was about to disappear. Then came the discovery of deepwater and remote oil and gas fields and, here at home, FRACKING, which seems to cause a huge burst in supplies but each well dies out in months, so the greater supply may be an illusion. All of this to say, we get on our high horse and assure Europe, don’t worry, we will backstop your gas needs, but how can we? We don’t have the necessary terminals and infrastructure, let alone supply, and whatever we do send to Europe will raise prices for Americans here at home, which will of course be welcomed…..I bet there aren’t enough proper ships to carry liquified gas anyway….and all of this backstopping for Germany and Europe is going to compete with the existing routes for LNG I would see in foreign ports, raising prices for all….

      Putin should have invaded in September, then the winter shortage would be really powerful, but right now it is coming spring so the crunch won’t be nearly as bad, but no matter what, prices are going through the roof and will stay there. This will come down to whoever can suffer it out the most – Russians, who have lived with suffering for generations? Europeans, who have also suffered but have no energy supplies as do the Russians? Americans? We have the energy in North America, and we can grow food, but we, too, will suffer, and suffering doesn’t play well here. If we have been screaming about the tyranny of wearing masks imagine what no gas will do…..

  4. Sardonia

    “Jail Time for Czechs Agreeing With Russian Intervention”

    No mention in the article as to whether or not there is jail time for Czechs agreeing with Czechs agreeing with Russian intervention.

    Also no mention as to whether or not there is jail time for Czechs agreeing with Czechs agreeing with Czechs agreeing with Russian intervention.

    The Czech government needs to clarify this matter.

    1. Wukchumni

      Will canceled Czechs be allowed to be redeposited into polite society once the war is over?

      1. ambrit

        And what about E-Czechs?
        “There are some things Money can’t buy. For E-Czechs, there’s Master-code.”

        1. Maxwell Johnston

          High time for some really silly E European jokes:

          What do you call an abortion in Prague? A cancelled czech.

          What do you call a phone salesman in Warsaw? A telephone pole.

          Why are there so many hotels in Romania? Because it’s a great place to bucharest.

          Why did the food company build a factory in Budapest? Because the country is so hungary.


        2. ex-PFC Chuck

          During Cold War One days two men who were mid level uniformed colleagues on the staff of the Warsaw Pact became friends because of their common interest in hiking and camping. They frequently took leaves together in the nearby Carpathians. After the USSR imploded they kept in touch and decided to travel to Banff National Park in Canada for an outing in the northern Rockies. They were having a great time until the third day when the trail took a 90 degree turn around a huge rock formation and were immediately confronted by two grizzly bears. The hikers had no chance to escape and were immediately attacked. The bears must have been starving because they gorged on the two men and within a short time there was nothing left. Another party across the ravine could see what was happening and got in touch with authorities who helicoptered several armed rangers to the scene. The bears had eaten so much they had fallen asleep nearby, but when they saw and heard the rangers arriving they aroused to defend themselves, whereupon the rangers shot them. When they were sure the bears were dead and their heart rates back somewhere near normal one ranger remarked, “I wonder which animal ate which?” Whereupon another ranger said, “That’s easy. The Czech is always in the male.”

          1. juno mas

            Thanks to all the jokesters. I’m rolling on the floor…! A nice break from the din of war.

      1. Sardonia

        Hillary will blow a Jelly Gasket, as SHE has dreamt of being the first woman to unleash a nuclear attack, ever since her days as a Goldwater Girl.

        1. jimmy cc

          getting A bombed by a black woman…

          i never thought I’d live to see the day that glass ceiling was broken, along with a viable planet…

      1. Wukchumni

        Yesterday’s SOTU reminded me of being 7 and getting the Sears Xmas Wish Book in the late summer and it’d be dog eared by the holidays, with said wishes going largely unfulfilled.

    1. lance ringquist

      the depression started in 1929, and the WWII was set in stone the minute the fascist wilson took sides in WWI. fixed it for you.

  5. jr

    Jimmy Dore is running a fun video with 5 or 6 of the biggest media screwups in their coverage of the war. Cenk Uyger and some $hit-lib attempting to portray sadness for the heroes of the Battle of Snake Island. Russian planes simultaneously attacking Keeeev and participating in a Russian parade a year or so earlier. Zelensky inspecting the troops in combat drag. And I had no idea “The Ghost of Kiev” shot down six Russian MIGs! In one day! That makes the pilot an Ace! I’m just not sure if it was on console or PC…

    1. Wukchumni

      I’ve been avoiding the conflict as much as possible, murder by the numbers ain’t my bag, but the picture painted shows that dog will hunt, so long as the tale is wagging.


    2. Bart Hansen

      Re: Keeeev: Who in media land passed out the memo about this goofy pronunciation of the Ukrainian capitol? To hear the locals, just go on TV (so I don’t have to) and you will hear Key-ev residents leaving town using two syllables for the name of the city being abandoned.

      Also, when we were in Moscow in 2014 I asked a Russia how to pronounce Kiev and got Key-ev in reply.

      It reminds me of how the county of Qatar got called ‘cutter’ back during the Iraq war.

      1. jr

        Ditto, Bart. This is an ancient power tripping device, I’ve seen it used a million, million times in advertising, classrooms, museums, whatever. It’s an attempt by the speaker to sound better informed than their audience with the bonus of setting up a relationship of “See, you thought you knew but you were wrong, you can’t even pronounce the name right so listen up!”

        I noticed it as soon as the coverage started: suddenly no one on the news was saying Kiev but Keeeev. Something similar happened years ago with advertising for Jaguar automobiles. I distinctly remember one day in my car listening to an ad with a British woman clumsily over-enunciating the syllables to sound like JHAG-yoo-aur. It was an eye-opener for me to see this patent attempt to alienate the masses and form an in-group around a freaking car.

        People really have no idea how deeply they are manipulated, misled, duped. And they will hate you when you point it out. Which makes it fun. Except for the part where they cheerfully lead everyone down the path to perdition.

        1. Edgar, not Edmund

          re: Jaguar, Lexus did a version in the 1990s. They hired Jonathan Pryce, the mellifluous British actor, as their spokesman. Then, for years, insisted he say Lexuses were “incom-pare-able”, rather than “incomp-rable”, as any native Brit would say.

        2. britzklieg

          People really have no idea how deeply they are manipulated, misled, duped.

          Try this experiment on Twitter…

          If you suspect your tweets and replies are being gatekept – they are.

          Make a comment, or reply to a comment, then go to your profile and check under “tweets and replies” and you will see it’s there. If a tweet, it’ll be there, if it’s a comment it’ll be there under the comment replied to and everything will look right. But if you return to the mainfeed looking for yours you might not see it or if you can find the original tweet you responded to, your reply will not be there. Twitter regularly “unfollows” you from accounts you’ve chosen to follow. Twitter regularly “unlikes” comments you’ve “liked.” They get away with it because twitter is relentlessly forward – immer weiter – and it takes enormous effort to backtrack and see exactly how your “participation” has been handled.

          Twitter is Stasi with a happy face emoji attached.

          1. britzklieg

            just to clarify, in hopes you will not find my comment above pure paranoia…. this doesn’t happen with most tweets or comments, that would be too obvious. As long as you stay in line it will function as the lonely hearts club whine fest it is designed to be and you will be distracted for sure.

            But leave a disparaging comment about Valery Gerghiev being fired by the quislings at the Munich Phil, or try to start a hash like #boycottBidensSOTU or #Ignore the warpigs, or retweet a post from #RussiansWithAttitude (it’s an excellent resource for the war, btw) suggesting what’s actually happening on the ground is not what it’s reported to be.

            They do the happy face part well. They do the Stasi part even better.

            1. jr

              I don’t use Twitter but I have no problem believing what you say. When my friend’s dog died a few years back, as I lay on my couch sobbing and explaining what happened to my partner, an ad came up on my phone for grief counseling for dead pets. After that, I can believe anything…

              1. britzklieg

                It’s actually quite unnerving isn’t it?

                My old self now wants to add something witty here, something to lessen the rhetorical weight of having dissed big twit publicly, a mocking but self-censuring instinct to preserve my space in the metaverse.

                But now I’m not so sure.

                A new self is emerging and it’s screaming: “Fly completely under the radar, fool! Say nothing at all.”

      2. Anthony G Stegman

        I saw a news reports that said the Ukraine pronunciation is “Keev”, while the Russian pronunciation is “Kee-yiv”.

        1. OnceWereVirologist

          There are still two syllables in the Ukrainian pronunciation, so if you’re rhyming it with “Steve” you’re saying it wrong.

        2. Jeff W

          This professor of Slavic languages at the University of Kansas pronounces Kyiv as two syllables, with the second syllable ending in a v sound. These (ostensibly) native speakers of Ukrainian on Forvo pronounce the second syllable with a sort of a glide at the end. And, to add to the confusion, the two people in this Ukrainian government-sponsored broadcast (focused on the English spelling of Kyiv) seem to pronounce it in passing in English as one syllable, close to something like Keev, at least the way I hear it.

          There’s, of course, no reason to pronounce the capital city of Ukraine in English exactly as the Ukrainians do—we certainly don’t pronounce Paris as the French do nor Seoul as the Koreans do—but it seems like, other than avoiding the traditional English pronunciation based on Russian found in chicken Kiev, there really isn’t an accepted pronunciation (or set of pronunciations) in English yet.

      3. OnceWereVirologist

        Westerners unfortunately, in trying to de-Russify the pronounciation of Kiev, tend to settle on a pronunciation that isn’t correct Ukrainian either.

      4. Wukchumni

        Our misadventures since 9/11 haven’t been a complete loss, for instance i’d never heard of Fallujah, and it’s one of those foreign words that flows real easy, similar to Helmand Province-also previously unknown to me. You’d hear of some real tongue twisters such as Al Qadisiyah, or the pleasant sounding Sunni Triangle.

        See, it was worth it.

      5. Nikkikat

        Lol I noticed every place we start wars, we give it a new pronunciation too! To answer your question about who thinks this stuff up…..Ask the Democratic Party idiots that decided to piss off latino people by calling them Latinx.
        Such genius!

        1. Eustachedesaintpierre

          Hopefully no-one is planning to invade Worcestershire – the sauce is apparently a cure for pink-eye.

      6. TMR

        In Ukrainian it’s Київ, pronounced (Kee-iv), while in Russian it’s Ки́ев (the Kiev we knew from the Soviet days). Pronouncing it the former way is similar to us calling it Beijing rather than Peking nowadays.

      7. Soredemos

        Because that’s actually the correct Ukrainian pronunciation of Kyiv.

        Except hardly anyone in Ukraine actually speaks Ukrainian, even most of the nationalist types use Russian in day to day speech.

    3. fresno dan

      March 2, 2022 at 7:38 am
      Quote rom the Jimmy Dore video at @ 15:47: It is somewhat beautiful irony that so many of the clips prompting outrage (i.e., about Ukraine) in Western liberals actually come from wars their governments started.

  6. Andy

    It’s hilarious that not even 24hrs into the invasion social media and MSM were full of stories about how badly things were going for Russia but with scant evidence provided to back up this claim. Less than a week into the fighting the usual western pundits and news people already have it all figured out and know exactly how this war will unfold.

    The dearth of footage showing bombed out buildings and dead civilians and the recycling of the same pictures, sometimes by both sides, suggests that Russia army is fighting with one hand tied behind its back (so far).

    The western media whipping up war fever for clicks and reducing the entire population to twitching automatons denouncing all things Russian and calling for escalation is unreal. Context? Nuance? History? Nope…only mindless jingoism and ritual denunciation allowed or you will be called a traitor, Putin lover or, as has already happened to me, a Russian. So much for “hate the governemnt love the people.”

    I’ve even heard people who called Trump a literal fascist that needs to be removed from power immediately say hey, every country has a few Nazis in government, it’s no big deal.

    Western pols and media claiming to be concerned about the fate of Ukrainians while calling for escalation and the arming of civilians is particularly disgusting. I’d even go so far and call it evil.

    This parallel social media total war that’s shorting out people’s brains is new territory. Syria was a dress rehearsal but this is the real deal. Western rationalism RIP.

    1. Louis Fyne

      the Russian military is moving faster than certain 1930’s-40’s Germans, and the US in 2003 iraq.

      social media and Skynet has gained sentience as Baghdad Bob and Tokyo Rose. No molotov cocktails are going to stop what’s coming…..just make some foolish people die for no reason cause of a Facebook post.

            1. WobblyTelomeres

              Not. South Dakota is where she belongs as SD’s current governor is going to be our next vice president, filling the Palin role of exciting old republican males.

              1. ambrit

                “…exciting old Republican males.” Ah, so Bill Clinton has finally come “out of the closet?” I always suspected he was a Log Cabin Republican in drag.

                1. WobblyTelomeres


                  Kristi Noem was the South Dakota Snow Queen. Sarah Palin was Miss Wasilla and placed third in the Miss Alaska contest. Always suspected that old horn dog McCain of lesser motives in his veep search.
                  Don’t know how you got to where you did with that. Guess I’m just dense.

                  1. ambrit

                    Nah. Not dense, just a bit innocent. Just the kind to be feted and then exploited in Elite circles. (They don’t call it “Inside the Beltway” for nothing.)
                    Politics is notoriously “Equal Opportunist.”

      1. The Rev Kev

        Molotov cocktails? Does anybody remember that time that Palestinian girls were preparing Molotov cocktails to be used against invading Israeli soldiers and everybody around the world were cheering them? No, I don’t either. Here is how it can go with these devices. So a car full of young Ukrainians drive by a parked Russian vehicle and this blond bird throws a Molly at them but because of splashback, also succeeds in setting herself on fire and maybe the guy behind her-

      2. Soredemos

        Our media keeps being incredibly slow with regards to Ukraine. Russia has had Kiev surrounded for days; them ‘closing in’ isn’t a new thing.

        The media is going to have a real bad time as Russia cracks a bunch of stubborn nuts over the next few days and makes rapid progress as a consequence. They already cracked one in Kherson.

        Most of the maps still don’t show Mariupol as surrounded, and that happened days ago.

    2. Tom Stone

      What’s happening in the Ukraine is a battle between the FORCES OF DARKNESS and the FORCES OF LIGHT!!!
      Between GOOD and EVIL!!
      Between Pepsi and Coca Cola!!!!

    3. jr

      I’m wondering if we will have a Ukrainian “Tet Moment” or is the mainstream media completely incapable of reporting anything accurately, even in the face of implacable, impending realities? Perhaps the people who created the “Ghost of Kiev” could bring back Kronkite in a similar manner? Maybe shave off a few pounds?

    4. Dr. John Carpenter

      “I’ve even heard people who called Trump a literal fascist that needs to be removed from power immediately say hey, every country has a few Nazis in government, it’s no big deal.”

      So far, this has been my favorite thing. It’s been really interesting watching people who call Trump and his supporters nazi at the drop of a hat, totally stan Antifa, etc. find an acceptable level of nazis (as long as they hater the right people.) That’s assuming they don’t drown it all out yelling “misinformation” anyway.

    5. Anon

      I observed the effect, which I admittedly succumbed to in some ways, with the coronavirus: the power of the media deluge. It’s like a DDoS attack, when you are bombarded with worthless packets of information, and rendered incapable of connecting to a reliable source. It is highly sophisticated, I must say, despite the often laughable quality of the content, the medium is the message, yes? Goebbels would cry.

    6. timbers

      Pepe Escobar discusses Russian progress over as Saker. Something like US Defense Analysts are godsmacked at the lighting progress, comparisons of what US did in Irag in 23 days in friendly territory (Shite) vs Russian same in 6 days in hostile territory.

      1. Soredemos

        Russia’s actually been slower than they probably intended because of various stubborn hard points. I think they thought Kharkov would be a cakewalk and would mostly surrender, which hasn’t happened. Contrary to our media portrayals, they’ve actually been very soft handed so far. They could have started by just flattening entire Ukrainian units with rocket barrages, but they didn’t.

        I’ve heard the Donbass militia have been complaining about a lack of Russian air support. This seems intentional, because the goal for Russia has been more that the Donbass forces keep Ukrainian units occupied while Russia moves behind them and forms a cauldron. The Donbass militias actually advancing is of lesser concern.

      2. Mike

        I think there was a much larger body count as we went through Iraq then Russians through Ukraine. Just a guess from this armchair general watching videos though.

  7. Amateur Socialist

    “None of this has been done because the Russians expect to finish up their business in Ukraine rather soon, and then to negotiate a gradual return to normality with the West.”

    This bit of Doctorow’s piece made me think of Tiananmen in 89. The cameras captured the tanks rolling over the protesters then… 60-90 days later everything was open for bidness. Yep.

      1. ArvidMartensen

        yep and whatever he does (like playing piano with his penis) will be required viewing by the PMC to prove how intelligent, woke, anti_russian liberal they are. And so their liberal friends will still talk to them and differentiate them from knuckle dragging Trump voters.
        Lib1 – “did you seen how clever he is with his penis?”,
        Lib2 – “yes awesome, just shows what how intelligent, brave and anti-racist he is. Better than any US politician. Zelensky for President”
        Trump supporters will be split on his sainthood, maybe waiting to see what Trump has to say. Trump will probably see a money making and vote gathering opportunity so will endorse him as good.

  8. PlutoniumKun

    The $300bn question facing central banks Financial Times. Important. Subhead: “The sanctions on the Central Bank of Russia’s securities may prompt other countries to reassess how and where they hold their wealth.”

    I think this is the key dilemma facing the US and the west. Its slowly dawning on them that the only sanctions that can really hit Russia hard, will hit the west even harder. Regular Russians will suffer from losing their holiday time in Turkey or Bali and their western luxury goods, along with higher inflation for ordinary products. But the west – and the US in particular – might find $150 a barrel oil, high food inflation, and a loss of control over much of the worlds financial system even harder to withstand.

    1. The Rev Kev

      So maybe the Germans were onto something when they pulled all their stored gold out of the United States. And to think that the Venezuelans trusted the UK with their gold.

    2. deplorado

      Mario Draghi said yesterday in parliament that there are no assets of the Russian CB to freeze, because they all have been withdrawn already before the invasion began. There is a video of his saying that.

      So that is interesting.

    3. djrichard

      You got to imagine what China is thinking with all their assets tied up in US to balance the trade (balance of payments). It’ll be interesting to see if China unwinds that. The issue isn’t so much the price of those assets going down, though that would have interesting effects. The bigger issue would be the yuan suddenly getting more expensive compared to the dollar. Everybody’s outsourcing business model would go up in flames. The inflation of goods and services from that supply chain would be huge.

  9. griffen

    It used to be the rent was too darn high. Then it was the gallon of gasoline, even for the lowly 87 octane rating. That better be the best darn toothpaste ever invented for $10.

    1. The Rev Kev

      I wouldn’t be a fan of $10 toothpaste either, especially when I have heard that there are some pretty suspect chemicals in it. But I guess that corporations like Colgate have us over a barrel here. I mean, there is absolutely nothing we can do about it at all. Except for using baking soda instead, that is-

      Otherwise we are totally helpless. Will Colgate try to label baking soda as horse paste then?

      1. cobo

        more effective if mixed into a paste with hydrogen peroxide – cheap, effective, reduce trips to the dentist

    2. Paul O

      Boots in the UK sell Colgate Max White Ultimate Catalyst Whitening Toothpaste 75ml for £20 (~$26). :-(

      1. jr

        “ Colgate Max White Ultimate Catalyst Whitening Toothpaste”

        Good grief, it sounds like the Toothpaste of the Gods! No wonder it’s so expensive, “catalyst” will run you three dollars alone! And to be both “max” and “ultimate” at the same time! I haven’t heard those words in the same sentence since I quit dating around!

          1. newcatty

            I just realize that I dodged a bullet when I took advantage of a BOGO “natural” toothpaste sale. It isn’t an ultimate catalyst or maxing my teeths’ whiteness, but is missing most chemical enhancements. Stock up on hydrogen peroxide and baking soda. Baking soda , with table salt , is effective ant repellent. Next, big Chemical will order baking soda to be labeled as Ant Killer!

  10. PlutoniumKun

    Can Europe Replenish Its Depleting Gas Inventories? OilPrice

    Europe is screwed when it comes to energy supplies for the foreseeable future. The only advantage Europe has is a very efficient manufacturing system and an ability to manage downwards energy use. The crunch will be January 2023, the peak gas/electricity use system. Its not just a matter of energy supplies, nuclear and other thermal plants have been going at full blast all year now, and supply chains are strained for parts – especially for decades old plant. There have been a lot of unplanned outages since this time last year.

    But its not just Europe. Asia is desperately short on LNG and China also has major struggles with coal and gas. The US will also struggle to keep its rickety oil and gas and electricity infrastructure going.

    It will only take one pipeline rupture or another blockage of the Suez Canal to plunge the world into a 1973 style energy crisis. The Saudi’s and Gulf States are the only ones laughing right now.

    1. Louis Fyne

      it isn’t just energy. car factories need catalytic converters (palladium), alloys need nick, machinery needs industrial diamonds, vanadium for Airbus planes, the list goes on.

      the semiconductor shortage for cars will play out in multiple industries. this year will be a clusterf.

      if one needs certain esstential things for work or hobby (someone mentioned vacuum tubes yesterday), stock up. Worst case scenario, you have stockpile that you need to work off. . Best case scenario, you can keep functioning normally until the supply chain gets fixed

      1. Wukchumni

        car factories need catalytic converters (palladium)

        Been watching the spot price of Pd go down to about $1600 an oz in the wake of much lessened need with the chip shortage in the past 6 months, only to see it now @ $2500+.

        It was $100 an oz around 1990 and Pt was about $400 when the switch was made to cheaper Pd on catalytic converters, ha ha!

        Probably a much better indicator than all that glitters of how things are going.

      2. Captain Obious

        And there’s this: “Ukraine is a major producer of neon gas critical for lasers used in chipmaking and supplies more than 90% of U.S. semiconductor-grade neon, according to estimates from research firm Techcet. About 35% of palladium, a rare metal also used for semiconductors, is sourced from Russia.”
        Ukraine war flashes neon warning lights for chips (Reuters)

        Watch out for catalytic converter thieves in your driveway at 3 AM. Been a big outbreak going on for sometime here in CT.

        1. marku52

          Titanium as well. About half of it comes (well, used to ) from behind the Iron Curtain

  11. OIFVet

    Mark Ames: “getting a sense that some accounts that have been quite reliable are downplaying how badly military situation going for Ukr over the past 24+ hours”

    Yep, I have noticed that Pat Lang, for example, has completely subscribed to the Western narrative. I see that narrative as being built around an effective mix of half-truths, outright lies, perpetuation of stereotypes, and lots of wishful thinking. His background and his biases have no doubt played a role, but I am nevertheless surprised that he seems to have allowed emotions to overcome detached reasoning.

    If that narrative is effective on someone of his caliber, think about how effective it is among the general population, particularly the PMCs and certain conservative populations. Bernays is definitely having a great week, and I am afraid of where this will all lead to. Glenn Greenwald also, yesterday he had his Rumble show and outlined the dangerous slope we are on, something I had hinted at in this comment (, though I was loath and afraid to expand upon what I had started to conclude from the media coverage and statements from insiders and people in power: that we are possibly being prepared for nothing short of a forever conflict by eliminating the possibility that the public would accept a diplomatic solution. Do watch Glenn Greenwald’s video, Calls for no-fly zone, though still a minority, are growing and dangerous and you will see why the talk of 10-15-20 year war is practically harmless compared to what the crazies are actually wanting to happen. Basically, there is a shaping of public opinion going on at the moment (or the engineering of consent and the creation of need the people didn’t know they had, to quote Bernays himself), which public opinion will then be the justification for escalation of the conflict, if the crazies have their way. This is coupled with persistent talk about Putin’s mental state (he’s not his old self,, he’s possibly gone nuts) that can possibly create the support for regime change in Russia. This particular narrative also serves to deny legitimate Russian security concerns by blaming the war on Putin’s mental state, so it’s a twofer for the hawks. All of this is dangerous and it is nuts IMHO.

    1. Carolinian

      It is crazy and maybe Armageddon is in our near future. But I suspect the Pentagon and its war profiteer clients are a lot less enthusiastic for WW3 than our useless politicians. And the Europeans will have something to say about Armageddon as well. After all these years many still think Putin is bluffing.

      Perhaps he will wither under the pressure, but if not the air is hissing out of our balloon and that will take a lot of mental readjustment on all sides. Something big is happening.

      1. OIFVet

        Hah, the Euros are spineless lapdogs. Having lived here for a while, I have now lost all doubts I used to have. And do look at Greenwald’s video, that’s a retired British general that’s saying that “public opinion ” will eventually demand escalation. So the Brits are particularly toxic for diplomacy right now, just consider Liz Truss. And the higher alert level of Russkie nuclear forces was raised in response to British noises, according to the Russians. Western European russophobia amongst the general population is prevalent, and let’s not forget my fellow Eastern Europeans, particularly Poland and the Baltics. These are a tail that can wag the dog, big time. So no, I have zero faith in my Euro brethren, right now on the ground here it is all emotion and no reason. It’s quite disconcerting to me, to put it mildly.

        1. Louis Fyne

          exactly why George Washington warned foreign alliances–recipe for automatically getting dragged into war, because someone else is happy to start a fight knowing that they will not have to finish it

        2. OIFVet

          Just to expand a bit: I am truly concerned that the West sees this as an opportunity to fight Russia for a long time, and to even escalate the conflict. I don’t see any effort for real diplomatic solution, and that is what scares me. To reach a diplomatic solution, there ought to be a direct line between Washington and Moscow. Let’s face it, these are the real players, and if there is to be a solution Washington needs to acknowledge and accept Russia’s red lines. So far, I see no indication that Washington has the slightest bit of interest in taking that path toward de-escalation. What that leaves as last resort is the slightest hope that the Middle East, most of Asia and Latin America’s keeping quiet so far means that it is US and Europe getting isolated, rather than Russia. That might force a split between the Euros and the US as the economic pain hits, and a path to diplomatic solution. But that path would take a while, and in the meantime the price that will be paid here is in blood and economic pain. So, I am very concerned indeed.

          1. The Rev Kev

            The Russians have yet to turn up the Pain Dial and it is still set to low now. But in the coming months there is going to be all sorts of pain being set off as the markets start to fall into chaos due to increased cost of everything from gas to grain. And all the inflation and high prices will be all owned by Biden and the Democrats, even if the Republicans have been, kinda, supporting him. If you can, now might be a good time to stockpile on groceries and goods before costs start to escalate. But I could be wrong.

            1. Polar Socialist

              There seem to be consequences already due to rupturing of supply lines.

              German media claims that Porsche and BMW have stopped production in several plants and WV is planning to because apparently some parts are made in Ukraine. Until they can find replacement provider, you may have to wait a bit longer for your 911.

          2. Captain Obious

            Aren’t the *vast* stores of natural resources in Siberia also on the minds of our leaders?

            1. lance ringquist

              its all about free trade,

              “free trade is destroying the world: yugoslavia, free trade or else: Bill Clinton elaborated: If we’re going to have a strong economic relationship that includes our ability to sell around the world Europe has got to be the key; that’s what this Kosovo thing is all about… It’s globalism versus tribalism.”

              remember, under free trade whats mine is mine, whats yours is mine.

          3. deplorado

            I share your concerns 100%. The reckless lack of will to address this via diplomacy may push things into irreversible escalation.

        3. Carolinian

          England has had a ‘tude about the Russians since the Crimean war. And this after the Russians saved their bacon in the 19th cent as they did in the 20th.

          As for Poland, some have suggested that Russia may give them Galicia back. Will Poland suddenly decide they like the Russians?

          This he-man Russia hater club may be a lot more fragile than it looks.

          1. Synoia

            England has had a ‘tude about the Russians since the Crimean war.

            Not so much. There have been no more generals with the name Cardigan, and Army Commissions are now not available for a price for feckless younger sons of the Gentry, /s

            WW I did a good job of decimating the remaining younger sons of the Gentry, as the lifetime of a young officer in France was about 2 weeks.

          1. Screwball

            My PMC friends just adore her, along with the Vindmin military guy. They said bad things about Trump so they are on the good team.

            They both seem to be Russia hating warmongers, and we already know about Nuland and her clan.

            I don’t think anything is off the table with these crazy people, and I’m interested to see how the propaganda shapes the narrative going forward. If my PMC friends are any indication, they are all in for whatever – as long as in the end they get Putin. How far, and at what costs, are they willing to go? That’s what scares me.

            Be careful what you wish for.

        4. Kouros

          Oh, the British yellow journalism whipped the Brits into a frenzy until they got their Crimean War and the Charge of the Light Brigade!

          r\europe is stinking to hell with hatred against Russia and Russians. My brain hurts and my soul withers as touched by blight by just peaking there. This place (NC) is like going through a hike in an alpine meadow in June

    2. Sardonia

      What IS a (relatively) reliable source for status reports? Suggestions and links are most welcome.

      1. PlutoniumKun

        On twitter, Bazaar of War – a military historian – has been very sensible and even handed in his/her/their analysis. I’ve found this handle useful because he isn’t afraid to link to those giving different interpretations of the same data – this is usually a sign of someone trying to get to the truth, rather than fulfilling whatever the narrative du jour may be..

      2. OIFVet

        There are basically none. I use maps from Moon of Alabama and the Saker with a fistful of salt. Peruse MSM for the discordant bits of news that manage to slip through the narrative (it does happen). Also, inconsistencies between news of glorious Ukrainian successes and their increasingly frantic messaging that points otherwise. One advantage I do have is that I am also far closer to the conflict and able to peruse BG language press, which while towing the line, let’s many more nuggets through the narrative that don’t fit with it. So basically for me it involves a lot of reading of all kinds of sources, and then analysis to separate the wheat from the chaff. Military background and education in psychology and foreign relations help. But at the end of the day, educated analysis in an environment of overwhelming PsyOps and disinformation campaigns should always be consumed with a lot of salt. My own analysis included.

      3. Yves Smith Post author

        If you can tune out his “war of liberation” noise, Russell Blakey is in Donbass and is getting reports from Russian forces around Ukraine. Several times he has disagreed with Russian PR, so I think he’s an accurate reporter on the narrow issue of what is happening on the ground.

        He has also said his buds believe the plan is after the Russians take Kiev to cede the northwest part of Ukraine to the West to let them claim they fought Russia to a standstill there. That is not inconsistent with the possibility of bribing Poland with Galacia.

        1. Susan the other

          That’s what I thought looking at that line of Russian tanks and supply trucks all grid-locked up. Just slowly making their way along the eastern side of the Dnieper, it appeared. But it was too many to be normal military supply. Plus they are sitting ducks – what’s with that? They are three-across, taking up most of the road. It looks like a DMZ barricade. Maybe from Chernobyl all the way to Mariupol? Maybe the fastest way to set the boundary. So Kiev is the new Checkpoint Charlie?

    3. Stick'em

      Once I learned to view American politicians’ statements as projection in the psychological sense, all of this stuff finally began to make sense. As in if I broke the cookie jar, I simply tell Mom my brother did it. Never mind the chocolate smeared all over my grinning mug and the fact he’s at basketball practice.

      Is Biden showing signs of dementia? Then call Putin mental. Was the ‘Merican 20 year war in Afghanistan totally lost? Then claim Russia is going to lose a 20 year war in Ukraine. Did Hillary lose to the worst presidential candidate in the history of US elections? Then channel Marica Brady and chant “Russia, Russia, Russia!” until someone is convinced a couple asorted KGB Facebook posts about Yosemite Sam are enough to elect Trump in a shiny democracy.

      This simple axiom helps my head not hurt so much when I read the news. It’s like a decoder ring for statements by American politicians. Presume it is projection until proven otherwise.

    4. John

      I occasionally read Lang..not as much as I used to…and even agree with a lot if his positions. However, I never forget that he is a fully indoctrinated true believer member of the blob intelligence community that has been disastrous for American policy since WW2. Corrupt and self serving to the core. But then again, that’s Versailles on the Potomac.
      So don’t be surprised by Lang falling in line. That’s what they taught him to do at VMI.

    5. Charlie Sheldon

      It strikes me that the position of everyone aligned against one great and terrible enemy is multi-generationally familiar to both the West and the Soviet peoples. This seems more than a century old, actually, broken by that weird circumstance when we allied with Stalin to break Germany and Japan., The great familiar fall-back position we are born into and absorb all our lives, since at least the early 1900s, is that there is an existential threat, call it communism or fascism, we “democrats” (not the party) face. Now lost to history, but after World War One ended the US sent a couple divisions of US Army soldiers to Russia to fight with the White Army against the communists. We have been at this a long time. In this regard, I think for a few among us the whole point is to take out Putin and his state altogether, and it seems in the last few days we have shifted from trying to get the war in Ukraine ended to using this as a pretext to go full bore against Putin, even to the degree of accepting tactical nuclear use everywhere. Seriously.

    6. Ed S.

      The narrative is unrelenting and comes from what were, in the past, reasonably reliable sources (past being over 20 years ago). Consider the following from NYT (via Yahoo): Some Russian Troops are Surrendering or Sabotaging Vehicles, Pentagon Official Says

      Plagued by poor morale as well as fuel and food shortages, some Russian troops in Ukraine have surrendered en masse or sabotaged their own vehicles to avoid fighting, a senior Pentagon official said Tuesday.

      Some entire Russian units have laid down their arms without a fight after confronting a surprisingly stiff Ukrainian defense, the official said.

      A few simple questions: How many soldiers? Which units? Where? How many vehicles? What types?

      Further in, the article continues (again, from unnamed sources):

      Russia’s vaunted air force has yet to gain air superiority over Ukraine, with Russian warplanes thwarted by Ukrainian fighter jets and a surprisingly resilient and potent array of air defense….(emphasis added)

      A few more simple questions: How many Russian planes thwarted? Destroyed? And if air superiority is sill contested, why no run at the 40 mile long convoy? Would seem like a “turkey shoot”, eh?

      Finally, why is everyone anonymous in these articles?

      Pictures or it didn’t happen.

  12. Fabian V

    In line at pharmacy…

    Same thing to me recently. Now on Medicare with a supplement plan (I know Medicare Advantage is a scam thanks to NC). All my scripts are covered except the most critical.

    CVS: That will be $488.
    Me: What? I’ll wait on that one.

    Goes to parking lot, pulls up Amazon (sorry but $488 is $488) Pharmacy, $20.34. It was painful to transfer the script to them but I figure I saved $468 and I have the incredible privilege of having the time and resources to do it. Was not happy to give jeff any more money but, again, saving $468 is a big deal to me.

    1. CuriosityConcern

      Had a friend who emigrated out of the country after something similar happened to his family 10 years ago, lucky dog had dual citizenship. Although now he’s probably paying high energy prices…

  13. eric Bowman

    Just read “The Varieties of Bullshit”….I’m putting you in for a Presidential Medal of Honor. (& author)

    1. DonCoyote

      tl but read anyway. Interesting.

      I am surprised he didn’t at least mention “Bullshytt” from Anathem:

      “Technical and clinical term denoting speech (typically but not necessarily commercial or political) that employs euphemism, convenient vagueness, numbing repetition, and other such rhetorical subterfuges to create the impression that something has been said.”

      As Lambert would say, “and other such rhetorical subterfuges” is doing a lot of work there, but I felt it resonated with the Cooperative Principle/Maxims of Communication that Ludlow discusses.

      1. Pate

        I saw “trumpery” which makes sense but thought “malarkey” and “kafabe” should have been listed to honor our last two fearless leaders.

    2. JEHR

      I faithfully read most of this article, but I just slipped by the middle third because I said to myself, “Myself, I think this is all bullshit” and I went to the end to see how it ended.

      Also, I used the synonyms for making up new passwords. Thanks!

    3. Susan the other

      A delightful read. There are bullshitters and then there are bullshit factories. Peter Ludlow. Funny guy. His essay is meticulously applied academics, complete with 19 footnotes and a bibliography of foremost authorities ;-). Thanks. I needed that.

  14. Carolinian

    Re $819, Russia, and intellectual property–so soon Russia will be making all those drugs for pennies. How many divisions does Pfizer have? Hollywood might want to think about this as well given that the town runs on intellectual property. During the runup to WW2 Louis B. Mayer–who was of course Jewish–was very reluctant to do anything that would anger Hitler for fear of losing the German market (and by the same thinking they were chary of angering the Jim Crow American South market).

    Money makes the world go round, as the song goes, and Escobar’s piece in saker cuts to the chase.

    1. hunkerdown

      Pfizer has a board member in common with the Atlantic Council, Reuters (until recently the CEO), and the WEF. That reads to me as a small uncertain number greater than zero, especially in an information war.

  15. The Rev Kev

    “AI-designed protein awakens silenced genes, one by one”

    I have sometimes wondered if perhaps down the track it would be possible to create an AI-directed human being in cyberspace. So before you start manufacturing a new drug, you could simulate it with this ‘human’ and see what the effects would be both short term and long term. You could alter too the parameters for this ‘human’ to be male or female or different racial types and vary the dosages and see how these drugs play out. Hmmm. I wonder what would have happened if we had these AI-directed ‘humans’ now and could test the present generation of vaccines on them. Maybe we don’t really wanna know.

    1. Susan the other

      Considering we have the sorta normal distribution of people who were naturally immune, weren’t sickened nor did they get long Covid to our knowledge, it is certainly possible to isolate that happy gene and set it up to be activated. Interesting way to vaccinate.

  16. Zephyrum

    Quick PSA in case you’ve had the same problem as me. I have not been able to access John Heimer’s website for months. It turns out that Firefox automatically changes the http:// in the link to https://, which leads to a Cloudfront error page. I have not found a way to prevent this in Firefox, but the link works fine in Chrome, Safari, Edge, Yandex, etc.

      1. Return of the Bride of Joe Biden

        What’s infuriating is that everyone isn’t forcing encryption on their websites.

      1. pjay

        Yes. I had the same problem with Firefox. Using .org works for me – though to see his pictures I have to use Edge.

        1. judy2shoes

          I clicked on the link in today’s links, which pulled up the site as (I use Firefox). There is a “connection not secure” symbol in the left-hand side of address bar, but pictures and maps display just fine for me.

          1. judy2shoes

            Just checked my Firefox settings, and under Privacy and Security, if you scroll to the bottom and find “HTTPS-only mode, it can be changed to “Don’t enable HTTPS-only mode.”

            Hope this helps.

  17. Wukchumni

    GOP leader won’t condemn Greene, Gosar with cameras rolling The Hill
    My Kevin (since ’07) has backed himself into a corner of Crackerocracy, and while there is a market for it, you get the feeling Mitch & Mitt want no part of it for their vision of the white elephants, er Pachyderms.

    Kev has longed for the gavel, but is he long for Congress?

  18. Safety First

    On Ukraine.

    1. The “70 fighter jets” thing has been declared dead as of a couple of days ago.

    Incidentally, they are including Su-25s into the total. Su-25s are not “fighter jets”. Journalists are morons…

    Also, from a purely military perspective, this was always less than sane. Even assuming these are the exact same aircraft types (and subtypes) that the Ukrainian pilots have trained on and they can instantly jump into the cockpit, the idea was to base them in Poland and fly missions cross-border. That basically means no persistent air coverage to any depth beyond the western border regions, not to mention the possibility of someone getting shot down in Polish airspace.

    2. Re: Russian social media. In terms of popularity and usage, Telegram serves as the Russian-language Twitter, VKontakte is their Facebook. Not sure about the extent of Telegram censorship, but if you go through their top blogs even the most “liberal-minded” ones are being very, very careful about how they offer any criticism of what is happening. Which makes sense, given they’d just cut off Russian access for Echo of Moscow and Dozhd’ (both were basically offering the “western” view of the conflict) – but mind, both Echo and Dozhd’ are still accessible from “western” IP addresses.

    The point is, subjectively speaking, it looks like Telegram leans pro-Moscow, just as Twitter leans pro-Washington/Kiev. Mainline Russian TV channels are, of course, all pro-Moscow, although interestingly enough Russia 24’s coverage has shifted to only 40%-50% war by the fifth day or so, as in, nothing out of the ordinary is happening, move along…

    3. Someone needs to start figuring out what it really means for an Exxon to “exit” from a joint venture with the Russians. E.g. if there is an equity stake, they presumably have to sell it – to whom? At what price? In what time frame? Or if there is an operator contract, one would think there would be penalties for unilateral withdrawal? Not to mention the logistics of winding down ongoing operations, and simply of getting your people and equipment out now that you have to fly out through Asia…

    …as well, tons of “lessons learned” for when the conflict with China ramps up.

    1. Michael

      Exxon 30%
      India 20%
      Japan 20%
      Rosneft 30%

      Proposed new LNG terminal will probably die w/o Exxon $$ and expertise

    2. Yves Smith Post author

      One contact in Russia said there’s been a big shift in the last two days. The former pretty open-ness has been restricted:

      In fact, there have been strong some signals of impending radical change in the last few days. Previously, in response to Western actions a on Russian new media, Facebook was “restricted” on Feb. 25—(seems to have been slowed down, but not blocked. Twitter seems slowed as well.) Now we’ve seen independent broadcasters Echo of Moscow and Dozhd TV blocked.

      I can also report that yesterday (3/2) the main pro-government TV channels spent substantial time on demonstrating that Western-based social media (Facebook etc.) have become open anti-Russian propaganda machines (blocking Russian sources/ spreading fake news.) This line of attack could possibly be preparation for some significant Russian push-back to the Western actions against RT, Sputnik etc. Or maybe not. Time will tell.

  19. The Rev Kev

    “Reports That Ukraine Is About To Get 70 Donated Fighter Jets Don’t Add Up”

    I have to admit that I was suckered by this story and thought that it might happen. But in my defence, this was announced by Josep Borrell, ‘the High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and as Vice-President of the European Commission.’ If somebody had told me that somebody had just copied the number of jets from the Wikipedia pages on the Inventories of different EU countries Air Forces, it would have been too stupid to believe. And yet he announced it as fact. Come to think of it, this was the same guy that infuriated Putin a few weeks ago. Recently Putin tried to protest the number of Donbass civilian getting killed by Ukrainian fire to him but Borrell fobbed it off as nothing of importance. I guess that Putin is more a Russian Lives Matter sort of guy.

    1. The Historian

      A lot of people were suckered in by that story including military people here in this country (some of whom I know!). Perhaps it is because to the military minds outside of Ukraine, that convoy was just too inviting to ignore so they confused wishful thinking and fact.

    2. David

      People might perhaps have reflected that the EU, as such, doesn’t have an air force, that the Commission doesn’t have a role in defence matters, and that anyone who said such a thing must be talking out of his afterburner. But that would involve dull stuff like, knowing things, checking information ….

    3. pjay

      There is nothing about this tragedy that is too stupid to believe anymore by those who are true believers.

      1. The Historian

        To be honest, there have been many stories in the news in the past about NATO replacing MIGS with American aircraft in former Warsaw Pact nations. Here’s one – there are others:

        And the story that Ukraine would receive donated MIGS was carried on several air defense sites like these two:

        So it wasn’t considered entirely far-fetched that the EU would pay those countries to donate their old MIGS to Ukraine.

        I don’t think those who thought those stories about Ukraine receiving donated MIGS were stupid, just not entirely well informed. They were just too eager and got over their boots.

    4. cocomaan

      When it comes to any of this equipment, my question is, “How does it get there and not get bombed by Russian air power?” So far have no explanation.

      1. Brian Beijer

        Thank you for raising that question. I’ve been wondering the same thing. How are they going to deliver these weapons without the Russian forces destoying them as soon as they cross the border? Is this what they’re hoping for in order to drag more countries into the war? I don’t understand how they can logistically pull this off.

        1. Tor User

          Lots of weapons are being driven over the border these days. Germany sent a thousand anti-tank rockets in about 3 days. I see no reason why some could not fly over.

          The Russians will have difficultly keeping all/any of the Ukrainian aircraft that are still flyable on the ground until they over run some of the Western Ukraine countryside. Ukraine can fly those ex-Russian aircraft off highways. Not so easy to do maintenance there but the life span of these aircraft is only a few sorties.

        2. PlutoniumKun

          The rumours I’ve read are that the remains of the Uki air force are flying out of Poland.

          However, the notion that handing over some old Migs would make a difference is ridiculous. The Mig-29 was considered mediocre 30 years ago when the Soviet Union collapsed. Its only stayed in use because its too expensive to replace for the smaller east European countries and its a cheap option for developing countries. The Sukhoi range used by the Russians now is far superior. The Migs would get blown out of the sky in the first day of combat. They probably wouldn’t even get past Russian mobile missile defence batteries, let alone air to air combat.

          As David says above, this is all about ‘being seen to do something’, as opposed to actually doing something useful.

          1. Tor User

            It is clear that the Ukrainian aircraft are still flying a week after the war started. That includes Mig-29s and SU’s. And yes, the latest Russian stuff is better, but it has to be in the right place/right time to engage. There is no indication yet that the Russians are flying a BARCAP. Likely because there are still some Ukrainian anti-aircraft missiles around.

            I believe the remainder of the Ukrainian air force are being flown 1) when desperate or 2) when pretty safe. The strategy is to keep them around as long as possible. This ties down some numbers on the Russian side.

            Something of a “fleet in being” concept.

    5. deplorado

      Don’t be too quick to dismiss this. The Bulgarian defence minister was sacked by his prime minister just yesterday, ostensibly for referring to the invasion as “operation”, but rumors are it was because he refused to hand over a couple dozen MiG and Su planes that Ukr requested. Apparently that’s because Ukr pilots only knew how to operate Russian war planes (Poland is the servicer of Russian planes in Nato, so watch Poland on that). But a local observer pointed out that the website of the Ukr defence forces does list these planes as committed.

      Where there is smoke, there is fire.

      Also, today I learned that the Bulgarian military called in reservists on the day of the invasion, something they hadn’t done in more than a decade. So, while we are thinking we are witnessing decision making in progress, some things might have been decided ahead of time.

      Interesting times, to say the least.

  20. .human

    The U.S. Federal Trade Commission over the last three months has probed sky-high prices and supply chain disruptions, requiring companies including Procter & Gamble, Kraft Heinz Co (KHC.O), Kroger Co (KR.N) and Walmart to turn over internal documents on profit margins, pricing and promotions.

    It’s always fun to read the names of companies on the blacklists. Now let’s add some pharmas, FIRE sector and energy companies, and don’t forget Ama$on.

  21. Wukchumni

    Meet the security guards moonlighting as curators at the Baltimore Museum of Art NPR

    I was in Switzerland for a coin show during the winter in the mid 80’s, it was a bit snowy and I never saw a museum I didn’t like, so I popped into the Bern Historical Museum dressed in a Levi’s jacket and before too long had a security guard following me and I tried to lose him by doing figure 8’s, but it only emboldened him in the really slow speed chase that transpired.

    I hid behind a diptych as he deked into the Einstein exhibit looking for a ruffian surely up to no good, and made good my escape from the law.

    1. dave in austin

      I always ask the guards which exhibits and art works they like. And which ones get the best response from those attending. Always get interesting information.

  22. The Rev Kev

    “Black Sea Insurance Rates Soar As NATO Fails To Protect Commercial Shipping”

    ‘A Moldovan-flagged chemical tanker was hit by a missile on Friday near Ukraine’s port of Odessa, seriously wounding two crew.
    On Thursday, a Turkish-owned ship was hit by a bomb off Odessa with no casualties and the ship sailed safely into Romanian waters.’

    Anybody notice that they were very coy about saying who hit those two ships? If it had been the Russians, I am sure that it would be all over social media and might have made its way into Biden’s SOTU speech.

    1. ambrit

      Hmmm. Ukrainian Commerce Raiders? Getting into the spirit of the Internet of Things, why not E-commerce Raiders?
      Somehow, I don’t think it was done by ‘Z’ Ships.

      1. Kouros

        In the 18th century, Ukrainian Cossacks were raiding Moldavian churches and then selling them back the religious books (ornate and the works)…

    2. RobertC

      Coincidence is not causation but still there’s this…

      16 Feb “Approximately 4,000 primarily from Volkswagen Group brands, including Porsche and Lamborghini, were onboard and being shipped from Germany to the U.S. when the ship caught fire for still unconfirmed reasons, although some have suspected it may have been caused by a battery in one of the electric vehicles in the shipment.”

      All 22 crew members rescued safely.

      22 Feb “Russia’s Federation Council unanimously authorized Putin to use military force abroad.”

  23. tennesseewaltzer

    To show solidarity with Ukraine it now is permissible to demand that Russians abroad openly condemn Putin. Or face adversity. The Russian conductor in Germany was fired for being silent when asked to condemn Putin. That is only one example. What is the word for this behavior? Not censorship or boycotting. It’s more in the line of a temper tantrum. At least one symphony has declared that Tchaikovsky is off the playlist. What’s next? No Nutcracker Suite at Christmas?
    To honor Russian culture I have been playing Russian classical music. This was sparked by a recent comment of one who was listening to Tchaikovsky. Yesterday it was Valentina Lisitsa at the piano with Rachmaninov’s Piano Concertos. This morning it was Shostakovitch’s 5th Symphony conducted by Leonard Bernstein with the New York Philharmonic. Something along the line of the butterfly effect—sending beauty out into the world.

    1. Big River Bandido

      This is all reminiscent of how Boston and the Federal Government persecuted Karl Muck and German music a century ago.

  24. The Rev Kev

    “Nobody Wants Russian Assets”

    ‘BP has warned that it could take a writedown of as much as $25 billion from exiting Russia, as finding a buyer for its 20% stake in Rosneft will be very challenging.’

    You think that if I offered them 20 bucks for that 20% stake, they would take it? This would be a case of buying on the dip and is potentially a bigger deal than The Big Short.

    1. Dave in Austin

      I astuall put my money where my mouth is today; purchased the two leading Russian ETFs. But I was blocked by Ameritade from buying Gazprom an Sberbank (the real jackpot stock) ecause they are on the banned list. So I buy Ishares ETF ERUS and Van Eck RSX and get the same thing.

      Russian stocks bad
      American ETFs that own the Russian stocks, good.

  25. Carla

    Re: Your giant SUV or pickup could kill someone — many thanks for this link. I have shared it with our town’s Transportation and Environmental Sustainability Committee, a citizen’s advisory body to city council.

    In our imminently walkable inner ring suburb featuring tree-lined thoroughfares and stately homes dating to 1910-1925, SUV’s and pickup trucks dominate the streets and public parking lots. The drivers of most of these behemoths seem to have cell-phones permanently glued to their ears, and if they ever learned to drive properly it’s certainly hard to tell.

    As a frequent pedestrian and the driver of a Honda Civic sedan, I’m sick and tired of the hazards these gas-guzzlers and their drivers pose to all of us.

    1. upstater

      I parked at our local airport and it seemed like half the vehicles were large pickup trucks, often taking 2 spaces. One can barely see over the hoods. $10 gasoline goes a long way to solving this problem.

      1. Carla

        “$10 gasoline goes a long way to solving this problem.”

        Biden and Putin sure seem to be working together to make that happen,

  26. The Rev Kev

    “Russian Cybersecurity Giant Kaspersky Tries to Maintain Neutrality During Ukraine War”

    The propaganda in this article is a bit thick and I like mine smoother and not so insulting to one’s intelligence. Halfway down they appeal to people who work at Kaspersky to be snitches for them rather than at the end like some publications do. And then at the end they demand that ‘Kaspersky may need to take a side.’ I use Kaspersky as it is pretty good and western equivalents lost their appeal after Edward Snowden spilled the beans. But I bet that there will be talk of trying to ban it around the world so that people will be forced to use something secure – like ‘Nortons.’ You know, the one that has an in-built bitcoin miner.

  27. antidlc

    Impact Research memo:

    Democrats turn against mask mandates as Covid landscape and voter attitudes shift

    The message is backed by advice from Biden’s polling firm, Impact Research, which studied voter attitudes to Covid and found that most Americans are “worn out” by the restrictions and “have personally moved out of crisis mode.”

    In a Feb. 16 memo, the firm told Democrats to take “the win” on Covid, warning that by 49 percent to 24 percent, Americans are more concerned about it causing economic harm than infecting them or a family member, and that far more parents and teachers worry about learning loss than illness for their kids.

    “The more we talk about the threat of COVID and onerously restrict people’s lives because of it, the more we turn them against us and show them we’re out of touch with their daily realities,” Impact Research’s Molly Murphy and Brian Stryker wrote in the memo, which was viewed by NBC News. They warned that if Democrats continue to emphasize Covid precautions over learning to live in a world with the virus, “they risk paying dearly for it in November.”

    1. Henry Moon Pie

      I regret that I have but one life to give that Nancy Pelosi might stay Speaker of the House.

      Another Nathan Hale fan: Uncle Victor: Video


      “I’d rather have my country die for me.”

      Grace Slick, “Rejoyce

    2. Maritimer

      SNL gets in on the Mask Wars and indicates tide may be turning:

      And then Governor DeSantis in a short video scolds students for wearing masks and engaging in Covid Theater:

      The Gov must be getting some interesting polling. And a few well placed lawsuits, more whistleblowers, victimized public may set some of the Covid Orthodox running for the Freedom Exit.

  28. Wukchumni

    In light of Joe talking about ghost guns yesterday, the whole neighborhood wants one now, with a couple opting for Paris Guns, while for those with more modest ambition, a 105mm howitzer works too. Why would you waste 3D tech on a Derringer?

      1. Wukchumni

        I don’t see us dancing, we were way rusty before Covid and hardly did it on the floor anymore, and since the pandemic-even less.

        My guess is many of us stare into blank screens, instead.

    1. pjay

      Are you using firefox? If so use the .org domain rather than .net (see comments above). I have to use Edge to get the pictures, though.

      The Helmer article is important, as it emphasizes the real factors behind Russia’s decision to finally give up and say f*** it — namely that Ukraine was threatening to become one big NATO base even without formal membership. For all the people who just can’t understand why Putin would take such a risk (like Craig Murray, for example), Helmer give us a clue.

  29. Verifyfirst

    Reading this bleating headline at Huffington Post, I thought–substitute “USA” for “Russia” and “Iraq” for “Ukraine” in all the MSM coverage….


  30. Verifyfirst

    here is another one, this time from ABC:

    Children ‘in grave danger’ as Russian forces close in on Ukrainian capital

    You didn’t see those headlines for Iraq……

    Children ‘in grave danger’ as American forces close in on Iraqi capital

    1. Tom Stone

      Ukraine is totally different than Iraq.
      White children are valuable, dark skinned children are not.
      It’s the market at work.
      Ask any adoption service if you don’t believe me.

      1. Kouros

        Racist Ukraine coverage in mainstream Western media. Notice the racist overtones.
        1. BBC

        “It’s very emotional for me because I see European people with blue eyes and blonde hair being killed”

        – Ukraine’s Deputy Chief Prosecutor, David Sakvarelidze

        2. CBS News

        “This isn’t Iraq or Afghanistan…This is a relatively civilised, relatively European city”

        – CBS foreign correspondent Charlie D’Agata

        3. Al-Jazeera [not exactly Western, but West-aligned]

        “What’s compelling is looking at them, the way they are dressed. These are prosperous, middle-class people. These are not obviously refugees trying to get away from the Middle East…or North Africa. They look like any European family that you’d live next door to.”

        – Peter Dobbie, Al Jazeera news presenter.

        4. BFM TV (France)

        “We are in the 21st century, we are in a European city and we have cruise missile fire as though we were in Iraq or Afghanistan, can you imagine!?”

        5. The Daily Telegraph

        “They seem so like us. That is what makes it so shocking. Ukraine is a European country. Its people watch Netflix and have Instagram accounts… War is no longer something visited upon impoverished and remote populations. It can happen to anyone.”

        – Daniel Hannan

        6. ITV (UK)

        “The unthinkable has happened…This is not a developing, third world nation; this is Europe!”

        7. BFM TV (France) (again)

        “It’s an important question. We’re not talking here about Syrians fleeing…We’re talking about Europeans.”

        8. NBC News

        “To put it bluntly, these are not refugees from Syria, these are refugees from Ukraine…These are Christians, they’re white. They’re very similar [to us]”.

        – Kelly Cobiella, NBC News Correspondent, explaining why Poland, which was hesitant to take in refugees from West Asia and North Africa, is now accepting refugees.

      2. newcatty

        One of the first tells about the hubris and greed of white people was the killing of Native Peoples in the “New World”. It was no hyperbole: The only good Indian is a dead Indian”. This belief included native people’s children and mothers. After the onslaught of the Nations, the remaining ones were corralled into “reservations”. Many children were forceably taken from families, or given up in desperation, to White “boarding schools”. The history of African Americans, Latinos and almost every ethnic groups, not counted as Anglo ancestor, is another topic. The elite and blob has always fostered a hatred of the Other. It’s now becoming clear to many that the scapegoating of the Other is not only racial prejudice, but class war. Used to be that a lower class “white person” could derive self-esteem by believing, At least, or best, I am not (fill in an ethnic) group. Poor white were relegated to “White Trash “. They were an anomaly in the country. Hidden away in mountain hollers. Or hobos jumping trains. Now, the blinders are ripped away. Homeless people are not just people of color. They are sadly the mentally ill or drug addicts. They are unfortunate losers. They are children and families. The best defense for those who avoid them on streets or round them up in washes or underpasses, We were told that the poor would always be among us. Double down with, There for the grace of God go I. Triple down with, The rich make the world go around.

  31. CaliDan

    >Ship carrying 4,000 luxury cars sinks off the Azores BBC

    Pfui! Had a bit of a crisis there. First I had a delicious moment of schadenfeude––much needed this week. Then I came back down to realize that there were 4000 stupid cars at the bottom of the Atlantic. Thank goodness for Dazzler, the red poodle puppy.

    1. The Rev Kev

      That Dazzler is a good looking puppy. We recently had a litter of poodle puppies and they were very affectionate. Whenever the grand-daughter went out to see them she got mobbed by them in a sort of puppy-piranhas pack.

  32. Wukchumni

    You got the feeling with Biden not mentioning climate change last night and harumphing about a token amount of oil being let loose into the market so that everything will continue to work as always, that it isn’t only ‘Let R’ Rip’ as far as Covid is concerned, but also giving up to the inevitable of the new climate normal, and I for one am not ready for a 12 hour storm to dump 700mm (over 27 inches!) of rain on me, as happened in Aussie the other day.

    We’re all being let out on our own recognizance…

    1. MarkT

      Australia is experiencing record breaking floods. New Zealand has had them already and is waiting for more to come. Never underestimate the ability of water vapour and stupid people.

      1. The Rev Kev

        Where I live we have been cut off again by flood waters due to a massive storm last night with another expected tonight. Daughter can’t get to work in a nearby town as the main road there is by a river and underwater. The floods that hit Queensland have moved south and have hit northern NSW. Meanwhile Sydney has their own problems with flooding. But as one wit pointed out, floods are Australia’s way of putting out our bushfires.

        1. MarkT

          All I can say is that the oil magnates who knew about this in the 80’s should be hanged. They went on to finance anyone who contradicted their own in house scientists. And I’m not a believer in capital punishment.

    1. Mildred Montana

      Any reason why the Dow (and other markets) hang on to the the two digits after the decimal point? A doubtless charming relic from way back in 1890, when the Dow average was 35.68. But useless.

    1. Dave in Austin

      If you can find a copy of it, read Pyotr Wrangel’s Always With Honor. He was the last leader of the White Rissian army that fought in the Crimea and the Ukraine from 1919-20. Kherson and the surrounding area feature prominently.

    1. Pat

      Only in America would Petraeus have a shelf life following his retirement and security scandal.

      1. newcatty

        Old retired generals never spoil, they just get a hair cut, polish their boots and shine their badges. They wear fashionable big glasses and expert make-up from the tv stable. The stable has lots of practice on applying make-up, as more pundits and politicians are “over” 60.
        Hey, who can we dig-up to tell the serfs and useful plebes what to think? A main stay has to be a military general. The most trusted institution in America at times of great peril. The military! Its bipartisan and patriotic and above petty politics. It’s the backbone of American freedom, democracy and our way of life. Honor requires all service people to never lie, obfuscate, or BS the American people. Well, if Z is Churchillian, then Biden is “Rooseveltian”. I spit out my drink, as I wrote that.

        1. Late Introvert

          NPR turned over their news division to the Losin’ Lyin’ Generals™ back in the good ol’ Shock & Awe days. It’s only gotten worse since then. No wonder people listen to literally anything else, which is all well funded and not arrogant (if misguided) right wing shite.

    2. Susan the other

      W.C. Fields was very “churchillian” – I saw a famous poster of him (playing poker I think) – with his inner churchill shining through.

  33. Pat

    Dazzler is dazzling! And adorable. I would also bet Dazzler is smart, energetic and a handful and will be giving lots of love and laughs for a long time.

    Congratulations to Dazzler, Tracie H and family on the adoption!

    1. pjay

      This sounds like hyperbole but I say it with all sincerity. The very moment when I finally realized there was no hope for us as a nation was when I watched the testimony of Fiona Hill during the Trump impeachment hearings. It really shook me. Yeah, Dick Cheney was horrible and destructive. But he didn’t believe any of his bulls**t propaganda. For me the Fiona Hills of the world are much scarier. They actually believe what they are saying, and are praised as our most valued “experts”! I despise Dick Cheney. He would gladly destroy any weaker nation if it were in what he perceived to be our interests, just because we could. But I don’t think Cheney would be crazy enough to start WWIII with Russia. God save us from the true believers like Fiona Hill.

    2. Grebo

      “Fiona Hill, one of America’s most clear-eyed Russia experts, someone who has studied Putin for decades” puts it all down to that megalomaniacal nutcase Vladolph Putler.

      “The only real contender might have been Alexei Navalny, and they’ve put him in a penal colony.”

      That this woman is not only considered an expert but is paid to advise the US government is the scariest thing I’ve seen all day.

        1. Richard

          Grebo & pjay,

          I’m a bit late to this conversation, it being Friday, and I am not at all familiar with the Trump Impeachment hearings as I was not much interested at the time. So I was prompted by your comments both that Fiona Hill, again someone who I was not familiar with, was someone who seemed to scare you. I’m not sure why, as after a little trawling the tubes, she comes accross an an excelent contender for POTUS, it seems to me. But I’m from of the coal mining regions of Britain, and I recognise someone who tells it like it is. An attribute that I admire.

          Truly, why are you so frightened of someone who speaks their mind, and has influence?

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