Links 5/29/2022

Lambert and I, and many readers, agree that Ukraine has prompted the worst informational environment ever. We hope readers will collaborate in mitigating the fog of war — both real fog and stage fog — in comments. None of us need more cheerleading and link-free repetition of memes; there are platforms for that. Low-value, link-free pom pom-wavers will be summarily whacked.

And for those who are new here, this is not a mere polite request. We have written site Policies and those who comment have accepted those terms. To prevent having to resort to the nuclear option of shutting comments down entirely until more sanity prevails, as we did during the 2015 Greek bailout negotiations and shortly after the 2020 election, we are going to be ruthless about moderating and blacklisting offenders.


P.S. Also, before further stressing our already stressed moderators, read our site policies:

Please do not write us to ask why a comment has not appeared. We do not have the bandwidth to investigate and reply. Using the comments section to complain about moderation decisions/tripwires earns that commenter troll points. Please don’t do it. Those comments will also be removed if we encounter them.

* * *
‘Dracula Daily’ reanimates the classic vampire novel for the age of memes and snark The Conversation

What Was the Wiretap? The Nation

The myth of the white male scientific genius – and why its time is up New Statesman  Better than the headline.

Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Shark? NYT

Cartoons, Sharks and the Place of Beauty in Conservation The Wire

The ‘sea gypsies’ who live with whale sharks BBC


More Fun Than Fun: Strife in the Harmonious World of Honey Bees The Wire

Why Did It Take 35 Years for the World To Get a Malaria Vaccine? The Wire


The dark secret behind those cute AI-generated animal images MIT Technology Review

The story of Gertrude Emerson, the globe-trotting adventurer who made India her home Scroll

In Minnesota, giant fish statues along roadsides are a signal to pull over and start casting Star Tribune (chuck l)

The Best Road Trip in Each State The Discoverer

‘Hushed-up’ WWII ship attack claimed the lives of nine Star Tribune (chuck l)


Hong Kong dog shelter struggling to provide as number of animals doubles while volunteers move abroad amid pandemic South China Morning Post

COVID lessons from Japan: the right messaging empowers citizens  Nature

Preparing for the next pandemic: Time to follow a social business model for patent-free global medicine production Stat

New Not-So-Cold War

Indo-Pacific power dynamic in radical shift Indian Punchline

Cardinal Richelieu foresees Russia’s victory in Ukraine Asia Times

Russian MoD: Briefing on the results of the analysis of documents related to the military biological activities of the United States on the territory of Ukraine chuck l:  “What are the chances of this make the MSM evening news?”

chuck l:


What Texas GOP Leadership Has (and Has Not) Said in the Days Following Uvalde Texas Monthly

How long are Americans sad and angry about mass shootings? Four days. WaPo (Dr. Kevin)

US shootings: Norway and Finland have similar levels of gun ownership, but far less gun crime The Conversation

New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern addresses Harvard on gun control and democracy Guardian ( Dr. Kevin)

Federal customs agents DEFIED local Texas police chief to kill school shooter: SWAT team overruled dithering cops and burst into class to shoot gunman dead when he jumped out of closet after killing 19 children Daily Mail (re Šilc)

Maker of rifle used in Texas shooting faces outrage over ad featuring child Guardian (Dr. Kevin)

Man pulls a gun on TV crew during live report on gun violence independent (re Šilc)

Uvalde shooting: Kamala Harris calls for assault weapons ban BBC

Why gun control laws don’t pass Congress, despite majority public support and repeated outrage over mass shootings The Conversation

Law Enforcement’s Attempt to Cover Its Own Ass In the Robb Elementary Tragedy Is Unforgivable Esquire (re Šilc)

Big Brother IS Watching You Watch

Accused of Cheating by an Algorithm, and a Professor She Had Never Met NYT

Tech Industry Groups Are Watering Down Attempts at Privacy Regulation, One State at a Time The Markup

Information security gets personal: How to protect yourself and your stuff ars technica

In private, vulnerable Senate Dems back off tech bill Politico

Beverly Gologorsky, Not in Our Name Tom Dispatch chuck l: “Still, our George wasn’t wrong in that slip/description of Putin and himself, was he? In fact, he helped remind us, when it comes to invasions and criminal wars, how much the U.S. has in common with Putin’s Russia.”

Sports Desk


Implacable self-belief carries Real Madrid to Champions League glory Guardian. I’ve yet to watch the match. Big, big Luka Modric fan. Readers?

Supply Chain

Digital delivery transforms trade for Africa’s stallholders FT


Goat’s milk from Australia: Operation Fly Formula draws wide net WaPo (The Rev Kev)

Two Women-Led Startups Look To Solve Baby-Formula Crisis With Synthetic Breast Milk Forbes (Dr, Kevin)


Why burning more money on coal will not solve India’s power crises Scroll

Retooling India’s Digital Infrastructure to Truly Help the Poorest The Wire

When India was a ‘land of diamonds’, Russian tsars eagerly tried to build ties with Aurangzeb Scroll

Tesla may build a gigafactory in Indonesia. Where does that leave India’s young EV industry? Scroll

‘Will not make EVs until…’ Elon Musk’s Twitter reply on Tesla’s India plans Zee News

Class Warfare

‘WeCrashed’, a Compelling Tale of Capitalist Greed of the Kind That Thrills One and All The Wire

WeWork co-founder Adam Neumann’s new crypto project sounds like a scam within a scam recode (Dr. Kevin)

Did Elites Really Take Over Identity Politics? Jacobin

Climate Change

The tree-planting misconception New Statesman

Climate Chaos in Kashmir Could Change the Colour of Our Kheer, and a Whole Lot More The Wire

‘Flash Droughts’ Are the Midwest’s Next Big Climate Threat Wired (re Šilc)

Why India’s heatwave holds lessons for the world Scroll

Train crash in Pennsylvania spills oil product along Allegheny River Independent re Šilc: “our culture demands it.”


‘China is all-out against us’: an interview with Lithuania’s foreign minister  The Spectator

Samoa signs China bilateral agreement during Pacific push by Beijing The Guardian (The Rev Kev)

Antidote du Jour (via);


See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. Just a humble German

    “Germany has been cash-only for the past few days.”
    This is a pretty gross exaggeration, verging on disinformation.
    Obviously most money transfers don’t occur over that specific card terminal, and there are a slew of other alternatives besides cold hard cash.

  2. griffen

    Pitch ideas for the new business effort by Adam Neumann. “Trust me we will not fail this time, we just need more time and more money. I understand your doubts but you can trust me 100% on my words and actions.”. “We have grand ideas and plans for investing your money into an unquenchable pit where we burn investor money to offset the carbon offsets we will market in…”

    Good luck with all that, stupid stupid investment capital. Stupid Squared.

    1. JAC

      It is not like these investors do not know Neumann is a huckster. They know full well. And what they also know is that is how you make money in this modern economy, by being the first in and the first out.

      1. Glen

        Or the fees/perks/bribes, especially if you’re managing somebody else’s money.

        Good thing Obama threw all those people in jail after 2008 to make sure Wall St didn’t thrive on fraud and corruption!

        Oh yeah…

        (I understand Obama, it’s hard, really hard, to throw the same people in jail that bought you the Presidency, and promised to make you a multimillionaire afterwards, so yeah, world’s smallest violin, playing a sad tune.)

        1. Oh

          The commenters and readers of NC are the ones that understand how the grifter got to be President. With shiploads of cash from Wall Street and using the opportunity provided by people’s dislike of Bush and the 2008 crash, he jumped the line in the DimRat party and proceeded to fool people with his “hope and change” message. Since the people have no choice in picking candidates, they go from one crook to the next. They never learn and that’s how we got Biden. We’ll continue on this path until the country’s totally bankrupt (right now it’s morally bankrupt) and then they’ll wonder what happened.

      1. orlbucfan

        So, G. Paltrow is related to Neumann’s ditzy wife, Rebekah. GLOP’s head scam mistress, huh? Definitely scamming and acting run in the genes. Pathetic.

    2. Mikel

      Billy McFarland of Fyre Fest fame didn’t end with Fyre Fest. After that: “On June 12, 2018, McFarland was charged with selling fraudulent tickets to events such as the Met Gala, Burning Man, and Coachella while out on bail…”

      Think we’ve heard the last of Elizabeth Holmes?

      What’s Musk’s body count currently at, primates and humans?

  3. ArkansasAngie

    The gun argument is a misdirection. Stop talking about gun control and start demanding mental health care in this country.

    1. Yves Smith

      This country now has more gun deaths than deaths by automobile. Guns are a problem.

      And please don’t try the argument that other countries have guns too. The US is the only country to have more than one gun per capita, and twice as many per capita as #2 the Faulklands, and 2.25X as many as #3, Yemen.

      Oh, and which state has the most per capita? Texas.

      1. Pelham

        NC had a link yesterday to an item noting the connection between the epidemic use of SSRI drugs and extreme violence. I’d like to see a comparison between the rate of such drug usage in the US to that in other countries with similarly widespread gun ownership.

        1. Yves Smith

          There is no country even remotely similar to the US in gun ownership levels. We are 2x the level per capita of the Falklands and 2.25X Yemen. Of countries that are not war zones, the next highest is Canada, at 1/4 our per capita level. Of our guns, only 1 million out of >360 million are registered.

          1. Soredemos

            If it were just the guns, wouldn’t you expect to see the countries with significant, but less than us, levels of gun ownership to still have a significant fraction of our gun deaths?

            1. Yves Smith

              There is no country that remotely approaches our level of gun ownership. And one can argue that changes in degree produce changes in kind, that widespread gun ownership leads people to carry out of fear that others are armed. In Dallas, a middle aged well educated woman told me she was the only woman she knew who did not carry a gun in her purse. Tell me another advanced economy where that happens.

              Casual gun users are also dangerous gun users. Look at that notorious couple in St. Louis who came out to chase Black Lives Matter protestors off public property in front of their house (the street was “private” with respect to cars, not pedestrians). They had their weapons pointed at the crowd and at times each other, an absolute no no (you always assume a gun is loaded and never point it at anyone or thing unless you intend to shoot). Plenty of families with kids have parents stashing loaded guns in a nightstand table or under a pillow, another practice more likely to get someone killed than be useful in defense.

              Oh, and the US has also normalized the idea that it’s OK to kill people over mere threats to property….

          2. flora

            I am sorry for big city dwellers where over 70% of gun murders take place, and not by rifles or shotguns but by handguns. Why is US big city life so crazy making, so violent?

      2. Wukchumni

        I read Robert Young Pelton’s The World′s Most Dangerous Places about 25 years ago and the majority of the countries were African and guns were everywhere and then some.

        It didn’t help that many of the most dangerous places were failed economically, with hyperinflation a common theme.

        Something to not look forward to…

    2. Adam Eran

      From Shankar Vedantam’s The Hidden Brain:

      [Gun laws – after a discussion which revealed that people’s unconscious bias is that guns protect them, even though the facts say otherwise. For example, when Washington D.C. banned handguns, the suicide rate fell 23%… so the feeling of safety is belied by fact]

      People feel safer barreling down a highway at seventy miles an hour-without seat belts-than they do sitting in a passenger plane going through turbulence. The fact that we are in control of the car gives us the illusion of safety, even though all the empirical evidence shows we are safer in the plane.

      Suicide rates in states with high levels of gun ownership are much higher than in states that have low levels of gun ownership. Alabama, Idaho, Colorado, Utah, Montana, Wyoming, and New Mexico have twice the rate of suicide of Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Connecticut, Hawaii, and New York. The United States as a whole has a very high suicide rate compared to other industrialized countries. Researchers working for the federal government once examined the suicide rate among children in the United States and twenty-five other industrialized countries over a single year. The suicide rate among American children was more than twice the average suicide rate among children in the
      other twenty-five countries. The homicide rate among children in the United States was five times higher. Guns were responsible for much of this. If you measured only gun-related homicide and suicide, American children were eleven times more I likely than children in the other twenty-five countries to commit suicide by shooting themselves, were nine times more likely to be killed in accidental shootings, and were sixteen times more likely to be murdered. There were 1107 children shot to death in all the countries; 957 of these victims-86 percent-were children in the United States.

      The researchers Arthur Kellermann and Donald Reay once examined all gun-related deaths over a lengthy period of time in King County in the state of Washington. They were trying to find evidence for the common intuition that gun owners are safer because they can protect themselves and their families should someone break into their homes. Kellermann and Reay identified nine deaths during the period of the study where people shot and killed an intruder. These are the stories that gun advocates endlessly relate to one another. In the same period, guns in people’s homes were implicated in twelve accidental deaths and forty-one homicides–usually family members shooting, one another. The number of suicides?
      Three hundred and thirty-three.

      Also, not to be missed: Comedian Jim Jeffries on guns from his Netflix special Bare: (part 1) (part 2)

  4. Wukchumni

    Gooooooood Mooooooorning Fiatnam!

    It was all about the kill-ratio back in the world, the press only cared a little in regards to a small ambush, but get it into double digits (the amount of people murdered-not the shooter having guns blazing in both hands) and now we’re talking.

    The doors of perception were padlocked shut, for our protection.

    1. Smith, M. J.

      Poet, oracle, and wit
      Like unsuccessful anglers by
      The ponds of apperception sit,
      Baiting with the wrong request
      The vectors of their interest,
      At nightfall tell the angler’s lie.

      With time in tempest everywhere
      To rafts of frail assumption cling
      The saintly and the insincere;
      Enraged phenomena bear down
      In overwhelming waves to drown
      Both sufferer and suffering

      The waters long to hear our question put
      Which would release their longed-for answer, but.

  5. Alyosha

    Re chairs, Good stuff there both with the staked stool and the Scandinavian mid-century modern sitting in for the center of liberalism. It’s a little too heavy on modern furniture design though and could use representation of the varieties of “stick chairs”. They should have consulted Chris Schwarz of Lost Art Press, author of “The Anarchist’s Tool Chest”, “The Anarchist’s Design Book” and the “The Anarchist’s Workbench”.

    Re drives, 31 up Lake Michigan is pretty but dominated by PMC vacation spots. M28 across from (roughly) Sault Saint Marie to Marquette and the. US41 further west and then north to copper harbor is far more impressive. Plus you’re on the shores of the Greatest Lake rather just another Great Lake. Side trips to many waterfalls are available, though most aren’t huge simply because they cut through some of the oldest exposed rock on the planet, worn down by time and glaciers.

    1. Basil Pesto

      Big grin-inducing meme. I’m probably in the green sector looking at my chairs. Wonder where beanbags fit in tho

      1. Amfortas the Hippie

        My barstool at the wilderness bar is a 30 something inch pecan log
        Dont know where that would fit in this schema

      2. Massinissa

        Wouldn’t beanbags and most other non-chair chairs fit under some kind of anarchism under this schema?

    2. Stick'em

      Re: political chairs meme

      They forgot the large segment of the world’s citizens left hanging in the global game of Neoliberal Musical Chairs with no chairs, right there popping a squat.

    3. Bugs

      Those ubiquitous white plastic stacking chairs that are in every roadside café in the developing world need to be there somewhere. But I see no room for them in that ideology.

    4. Thistlebreath

      Brockway Mountain Drive in fall color season. The geology of the Keweenaw indeed does have ridges and spines of pre Cambrian Basaltic lava.

      1. Alyosha

        The Huron Mountains rival the Keweenaw IMO, but they’re much less accessible. And of course the best bits of them, including old growth forest, are the private property of old money oligarchs. They do not take kindly to commoners, even those willing to approach from where there are no roads.

    5. ambrit

      Do notice that the chair ensembles labeled Hedonism and Catholicism are the same. Each ensconsed at roughly the same sector of the “opposite” sides of the “Circle.”
      “Sit back, kick up your feet. We have your back pardner.”

  6. The Rev Kev

    “‘Hushed-up’ WWII ship attack claimed the lives of nine Minnesotans”

    I can believe that the Pentagon was reluctant to release old military secrets as it is in their DNA. The thing is, there were near contemporary newspaper accounts which talked about this attack and the German weapon used and it was only about twenty years later that the Pentagon released all that they knew on the attack-

    ‘The use of an “aerial glider bomb” was first reported publicly on 14 November 1945 in an account of the battle in the Salt Lake City Tribune. On 9 March 1947 the Chicago Tribune published a complete account of the attack including the use of a “radio-controlled [sic] glider bomb.” In 1948 a history of British India Line in the Second World War was published stating “the missile was one of the new glider bombs guided by wireless.” The US Government officially released the remaining details of the incident, specifically that a radio-controlled glide bomb had been used, in 1967 after the passing of the Freedom of Information Act.’

    I suppose that it is a case of the Star Tribune doing a series of history articles of interest to Minnesotans and this was just a handy, obscure piece of history.

        1. JTMcPhee

          That always enrages me every time I think about it. All the worst of the Empire of Lies and the Kingdom of Greater Israel in one horrific package. Learning about that “unfortunate memory-holed incident” killed off the last little vestiges of the stupid “patriotism” that impelled me to enlist in the US Army in 1966.

          Not that there’s not a gazillion other bits of our history that ought to have awakened me much sooner.

  7. Larry

    Tesla building factories is the new vapor ware narrative of infinite growth. . I’m sure there’s so much demand they need a factory in Indonesia.

  8. The Rev Kev

    “Federal customs agents DEFIED local Texas police chief to kill school shooter: SWAT team overruled dithering cops and burst into class to shoot gunman dead when he jumped out of closet after killing 19 children”

    Been trying to avoid reading more news of this atrocity because ever time that I do, it gets worse and such is the case here. Check out this section-

    ‘Officials admitted on Friday that nearly 20 officers stood in a hallway outside of the classrooms during the attack, believing any potential victims inside were already dead. The on-site commander ‘was convinced at the time that there was no more threat to the children and that the subject was barricaded and that they had time to organize’ to get into the classroom, McCraw said.’

    In other words, the cops figured that they were all dead so why put themselves out? No consideration that some kids may be playing possum (at least one was) but what is worse, did not one cop there ever hear of the “Golden Hour”?

    It was mentioned yesterday that the local police department munches on 40% of Uvalde’s city budget. That is bad enough. So how many cops does that buy you in a town of 16,000 people? If an article that I stumbled across is true, about 40.

    1. Wukchumni

      Anybody notice the similarity to Ukraine & Uvalde?

      Both start and end with the same letter, and both have fairly inept armies as it turned out when push>met<shove.

      The thought is we can solve both matters by supplying them more weapons.and countermeasures.

        1. NotTimothyGeithner

          Obama? Is that the guy who gets into fights with Spotify? He is calling for someone to do something.

      1. Gavin

        Uvalde cops are the thin line between citizens and, it would seem, parking tickets and moving violations.

        They’re certainly not protecting against violence.

        1] Those police at schools are only the ones who are the lowest-performing at issuing tickets. They’re not sending their best to staff the schools.
        2] What percentage of LEO are training anything on their days off? If it’s over 5, color me shocked. Most cops treat it like a job rather than an obligation or a calling.

        Plenty of veterans also point out that LEO are simply not taking advantage of anti-terrorism training even if veterans of the many special forces branches are offering it for free.

        Not only do cops have no obligation to actually protect per USSC… they’re not competent enough to do what’s needed for that protection even if they wanted to.

        A] proper ID of target is training, not just showing up
        B] What percentage of current LEO could run 3 miles in 24 minutes and without resting qualify as expert? LEO isn’t just a desk job with the occasional fascist cosplay.

    2. GramSci

      I had to read that way too many times to dispel the fog clouding the timeline. Apparently the Feds had arrived by 12:15 but the SWAT team didn’t “overrule” the local cops until 12:50. They all dithered.

        1. Balakirev

          Even so, I’m sure they looked imposing.

          You know, that wouldn’t be a bad epitaph for any memorial to the dead children. With pictures, and well, everything! /s

      1. Mel

        Mental arithmetic: $4.4million for 40, $1.1million for 10, $110,000.00 each. Salaries, pensions, equipment, supplies, buildings — that could be about what it costs to have them there.

        1. Louis Fyne

          1 cop for 400 people is not abnormal

          yes, say average salary $55k, + 20k to 40k for benefits, doesn’t leave much for everything else. PD likely got the kit from federal grants.

          of course training is expensive, doubt that they trained commensurate to the kit

      2. polar donkey

        Memphis has 650,000 people. City wants 2,500 cops. Has 1,900. Cops have a $240ish mil budget. Still get funding for 500 cops they don’t have. MPD eats about 36% of city budget. City has big contracts for blue crash surveillance cameras, the gun shot detectors, stingrays, and license plate readers. Plus, replacing police cars. The number of wrecked squad cars each year is mind boggling.

    3. griffen

      I think that some key takeaways of the situation could be clarifying. Firstly, the awkwardness and dithering of professionals who ought to know the rules of engagement not adhering to those rules. Many many times we all read about no-knock warrants and the forced entry into a suspected criminal’s apartment or home. Did someone just leave the battering device back at the office? Yes you might expect to get shot, but to leave those children in harm’s way is just morally offensive.

      Secondly, selling such equipment to a just turned 18 year old does not pass muster anymore. It’s not okay if a 25 year old disturbed individual can acquire weapons either. The weapon and the accompanying ammunition, maybe that becomes a focal point at the apparent ease it was acquired. No history suggests that the shooter, Ramos, was under any mental health or physical health constraints. But obviously to the few that knew him, some disturbing signs were showing.

      America in 2022. Innocents suffer and die the last week of the school year. Feels like Columbine would have changed things, or even Virginia Tech in 2007 or the Colorado theater shooting in 2012. Nope no change to make here.

      1. marym

        They had explicit training that the priority is to go In and save lives. I would disagree with a description of awkwardness and dithering. They’re adults who made a decision, as individuals, collectively, and in the chain of command. The twitter thread contains extensive screen shots of the training material, comments, and link to a NYT post.

        “In the past two years, the Uvalde school district has hosted at least two active-shooter training days. One of them was just two months ago. The trainings included both classroom teachings and role-playing scenarios inside school hallways

        The training is clear: Time is of the essence. The “first priority is to move in and confront the attacker.”

        The first officers may be risking their lives. But, it says, innocent lives take priority.”

        “Peter Arredondo, the chief of police for the Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District, completed an eight-hour “Active Shooter Training Mandate” course on Dec. 17, 2021, according to Texas Commission on Law Enforcement public records obtained by NBC News.

        He completed the same course the previous year, on Aug. 25, 2020, according to the documents.

        Arredondo, who has been the chief since 2020, stopped at least 19 officers from rushing in…officials said Friday.”

        (Providing the second link for information about the training and my comment about chain of command – not buying any potential excuses from the cops of “just following orders” or scapegoating of the one by the many)

        1. chris

          For the sake of conversation, and to push back against what I’m sure will become a response to the claims of “dithering”, there is disagreement on whether it is a good idea to confront an attacker in a situation like that, regardless of whatever official policy exists. The following comes from training discussions I’ve had as part of tactical handgun scenarios and classes…

          The reason why you might not rush in is that if you are in a situation where it’s one on one (or small numbers against one attacker) and the attacker kills/disables the responding officer(s) then the attacker has access to the weapons the officer has in addition to anything else they brought with them. You’ve also escalated the situation and made negotiations more difficult. The remedy for that is supposed to be additional support and back-up so that moving against an attacker is not such a high-risk/high-reward scenario. Note that this is also a direct challenge to the “good guy with a gun” LARP dream that so many gun fetishists have.

          In the case of Uvalde, it appears that those involved did not consider any of those tactical concerns. But I wouldn’t be surprised to see that angle discussed as a defense of the officers involved. I also wouldn’t be surprised to see a lot of parents groups push for their members being allowed to act as lone armed saviors. The fantasy of a lone hero with a gun saving hostage children is too good to give up.

          I think how this will end is with more moments of silence and a lot of public schools on the fringes of our society shutting down because so many parents will choose to homeschool. We’re already seeing that in my part of Maryland where the schools are arguably great.

          1. Stick'em

            These repeated mass murder school shootings are one of the reasons we homeschool our daughter. The consistent mishandling of COVID is another.

            “We all have physical needs for food, shelter, water. This is most important because if you don’t have it, nothing else really matters. And then right above that is safety.”


            The Senators and Congressmen send all their kids to private bording school, so really they have no skin in this game. It isn’t any surprise when they follow the money and privatize schools, just like guns’n’ammo and everything else in ‘Merica is turned into a profit machine. Why it’s almost as if the sabotage of public schools is intentional…

            1. marym

              ” the sabotage of public schools”

              There are both direct efforts to undermine and privatize education (inadequate funding, charter schools, vouchers to subsidize private/religious schools) and to delegitimize public school teachers and curriculum; and opportunistic use of any controversy to contribute to those efforts (masks and school closing issues, school shooting)..

              1. Stick'em

                Yes. It’s the further adventures of claiming teachers teach “monkey evolution,” “Sharia law,” and “white replacement theory” in public schools so people will take their kids out.

                Defund. Discredit. Destroy.

                Same ole neoliberal ploy used to get rid of every public institution and replace it with the money-making apparatus of the vampire squid.

                1. jr

                  Thanks for the article. Here in NYC the schools continue to decay. My sister, who could be making a lot more money with her education and skillset and who is better educated and more experienced that the highest reaches of the school system’s hierarchy, is pretty close to the breaking point as a middle school teacher. Recently:

                  The DoE changed it’s grade submission requirements with no warning and everyone is basically working two jobs. I haven’t seen her in weeks if not months because her weekends are filled with paperwork and navigating the pathetic so-called network of education and city/state websites.

                  The DoE decided to wait another year to offer eligible teachers tenure. No reasons provided that Sis knows of. She had a hostile meeting with the worthless professional obstacle of a principal where he opened by demanding to know what she does around the school besides show up for work. This isn’t personal, she said, he does it to all the teachers, good or bad or ugly. He then tried to get her to sign legal-like paperwork without a chance to read it and was incensed when she exercised her right to have an attorney look at it.

                  Last Friday, instead of teaching, everyone was forced to work a fundraiser for the school. Richest country in the world and along with firefighters and other essential people they have to beg for money for classroom supplies etc.

                  While she was trying to take a rest break from the hours long event, she was approached by the principal who sternly warned her that a parent had filed a complaint. Apparently, a female student, who incidentally had failed three years in a row without any outreach from Mom on her behalf, had been spraying herself down with body spray in class. As this is disruptive and not healthy for the asthmatic student who sits next to her, Sis told the girl to put it away or it would be taken away. When Mom found out, she got angry and wants to meet. Sis told the principal she couldn’t care less what Mom says or thinks, which didn’t go over well.

                  Crumbling schools, threats of violence from parents, hostility from their superiors, a union that does the minimum, and a society that literally holds car salesmen in higher esteem. Not to mention the unspoken war of fighting against a society that actively promotes ignorance as a virtue. I told her I’m going to start job hunting for her, that it’s time to sell out. She said wait till the semester is over and then it’s on.

                  1. Stick'em

                    Jr ~ Sad to hear of her plight. It isn’t unsual. One of our friends just quit after 20+ years of teaching. They had her reading scripts off a page to her 5th grade students all day. No latitude to teach anything of her own.

                    After awhile of hearing the stories, it’s difficult to believe the school system problems are due to just incompetence. At some point, malice on the part of the adminstration seems much more plausible. Their mandate seems to be to intentionally cause everyone with any seniority to get fed up and quit so they can hire the cheaper labor right out of school.

                    They’ll outsource our teaching jobs to someone in India over the internet before it’s over.

                    1. jr

                      It’s absolutely intentional. But don’t worry, Bill Gates will be there. Meta too. But not for their kids.

            2. CanCyn

              School re-design seems to be in order here. Better HVAC/ventilation to fight infectious airborne disease and the elimination of classrooms with only one door. They need one outside wall with an emergency exit.
              I worked in the community college system in Ontario for 20 years. We did ‘lockdown’ drills. It was chaos. It is impossible to imagine and prepare for every scenario in big multiple hallway, multiple entrance and exit buildings. Doors that are supposed to be kept locked are often propped open. After the first drill I experienced, I started carrying my purse, cell phone and car keys with me whenever I left the library for a meeting or to instruct a class. I knew that I would be leaving the building if I could find a safe way out in a lockdown situation. Not staying behind arguing with young adults about taking shelter somewhere. Before the college gig I worked in a high school library, Columbine happened while I was there. I was very grateful that my library had an emergency exit to the outside. We don’t have the frequent mass school shootings in Ontario but we prepare for them. Just the drills are frightening. I can’t imagine being a parent with kids in school in the US.

        2. griffen

          Thank you for the follow up, yes I had seen and read that a few places during the extensive convo in yesterday’s thread. Information moves fast and on occasion these brain cells wait to catch up. I could have conveyed more clearly.

          In summary, there is no excuse for not following the training.

        3. Lambert Strether

          > They had explicit training that the priority is to go In and save lives. I would disagree with a description of awkwardness and dithering. They’re adults who made a decision, as individuals, collectively, and in the chain of command. The twitter thread contains extensive screen shots of the training material, comments, and link to a NYT post.

          All this is true. Since I don’t think turning cops into a true military force is desirable, and may not even be possible, unless we put all cops through the equivalent of boot camp — an experience none of these “training materials” can possibly reproduce — then I think we should admit that the entire project of militarizing the police is cosplay and should be rolled back and abandoned.

      2. Brian (another one they call)

        Please take note of the effect of anti depressants on children and adults. The one thing you have to search for is the incidence of shooting and the shooter being on antidepressants. Pharma works very hard to conceal the connection. When they can’t mass murder us they create substances that cause others to do so in their place.
        when will this become important enough to stop?

      3. Oh

        Let’s keep airing all those stories about cop heroes on TeeVee and in Hollywood movies so we can pretend that the cops are such saviors.

        The first guns I would take away are from these cops. Apparently the heavy arming of them didnt make any difference!

  9. Wukchumni

    Costello: Look Abbott, if you’re the Governor, you must know all the players.

    Abbott: I certainly do.

    Abbott: I say who screwed up first, What to blame it on second, I don’t want to know about a third issue.

    Costello: Are you the Governor?

    Abbott: Yes.

    Costello: You gonna be a leader too?

    Abbott: Yes.

    Costello: And you don’t know what went down?

    Abbott: Well I should.

    Costello: Well then weren’t you incapable

    Abbott: Yes.

    Costello: I mean the fellow to blame?

    Abbott: Who.

    Costello: The guy that spoke up first

    Abbott: Who.

    Costello: The first press conference a couple days ago

    Abbott: Who.

    Costello: The guy playing…

    Abbott: Who is the first man of Texas

    Costello: I’m asking YOU who’s to blame?

    Abbott: That’s the other guy’s problem in Uvalde, not mine.

    Costello: That’s who to blame?

    Abbott: Yes.

    Costello: Well go ahead and tell me.

    Abbott: That’s it.

    Costello: That’s who?

    Abbott: Yes.

  10. Lexx

    ‘The Best Road Trip In Each State’

    … For People You Really Hate And Hope Become Roadkill.

    For years after moving to Colorado I considered the stretch of I-70 from Denver to Kansas City the hands down most boring drive I’ve ever been on*. Cows, wheat, cows, wheat, cows, wheat, cowswheatcowswheatcoheatshat… and then my synapses melted in the desperate search for visual stimulation. I’ve never felt so trapped behind my eyeballs and unfortunately I’m incapable of napping or fainting or rendering myself unconscious by will alone. Wouldn’t that be a handy skill?! Our neighbors are from Kansas and drive that road to see family at least once a year, and they pack their car before leaving with books on tape, movies on their I-pads, games, snacks, and any distraction they can think of. Being in their early eighties is hazard enough for that road.

    The beauty of the state may be one of Idaho’s best bragging rights… anywhere but the road from Boise to Idaho Falls. From Boise head north, anywhere north and keep wandering upwards, it’s stunning. Or from Boise head east but make a left at Twin Falls and up into Sun Valley, Ketchem, and the Sawtooth Mountains. Lived there for two years, didn’t much care for the culture, but the breathtaking views are still with me twenty years later.

    My mind boggles at why anyone visiting Santa Fe, New Mexico would want to leave? I could spend weeks there but usually only have days. And if you’re going daytripping, why would you want to drive on I-25? Are you in a hurry? If yes, then please visit some other state; New Mexico is not for you.
    Get off of I-25 and meander like the Rio Grande river. Get out of the car every mile or two, there’s something there to see, and contemplate what attracts so many artists to that state. They were visitors too and then couldn’t find any reason to leave. They were already home.

    *It was replaced by the drive from Havre, Montana to Medicine Hat, Alberta. Kill me. I understood then why people on Death Row just want to get it over with. My inner landscape photographer curled up into the fetal position and whimpered.

    1. Pat

      I haven’t done the Montana to Alberta drive. I have done Denver to Kansas City (which replaced a several hundred mile stretch in Oklahoma from childhood as the most mind numbing stretch of road in memory). I got excited seeing irrigation machinery turn on during hour two. I cannot imagine driving it regularly.

      New Mexico is amazing. Oh sure there are brief sections with nothing to see, but give it thirty miles…it will change. The only things it doesn’t have are an ocean and a rain forest.

    2. Randall Flagg

      Yea, about the best drives in each State. Skip that Burlington to Montpelier trip.
      For my two cents, a great road trip to see the state, VT State Route100 from border to border. Especially during foliage season in the fall.

    3. griffen

      Boring drive going east away from Dallas towards Texarkana, and into Arkansas. Flat, an occasional city to gas up but nothing of real interest. Lots of farm and ranches to drive past.

      Blue Ridge is a great drive in the spring and in the fall. I encourage anyone to visit the many waterfalls in the western region of North Carolina and the Pisgah National Forest. Why someone would list Gatlinburg or Pigeon Forge as a road trip destination is beyond me. The traffic can be horrible and I-40 east of Knoxville is just not interesting. Bonus points if a wreck or the occasional rock-slide happen to shut down I-40 between Knoxville to Asheville.

      I plan to visit Charleston again, just not in the heat and humidity of July. Lots of history and good sites to view walking in downtown.

    4. Wukchumni

      I’m a mountain person as opposed to an ocean sort, so i’d ixnay Route 1 in Cali and do Highway 395 instead with the goes right up rocky outcrop of the eastern flank of the High Sierra on one side and the almost equally tall White Mountains on the other side, and oh so many natural hot springs along the way, a plethora of potential.

      It’s also the easy way in to the backcountry, just drive right up.

    5. LaRuse

      I rode from El Paso, TX to Roswell, NM, in July 1998. My dad was a long haul trucker and I was a teenager and spent a lot of that summer on the road with him. After having spent 3 days at a truck stop in El Paso without a load out of town, he decided we needed a respite once we finally had a load, so he avoided the interstate and we rolled up through Roswell just so I could see the stupid museum and UFO kitsch. The abrupt drop in temps from 120* to 80*, plus the scent of pine/evergreen in the air on that state highway made it felt like we were driving through the Garden of Eden. The landscape was stunning and I have fantasized about moving to New Mexico every since.
      El Paso is not for wimps.

      1. Joe Renter

        I rode my bike towing a trailer through El Paso on the way to Big Bend State park last year. It took forever ride through that city. I looked it up, 255 square miles. I did enjoy going through the downtown though. Old buildings and a feeling of a through back era. I also like that it is 82% Hispanic/Latino.

        1. LaRuse

          I had high school level Spanish back then and that was a good thing – most of the places we could eat in the vicinity of the truck stop in El Paso had much less English than Spanish speaking wait staff and menus. I did a fair bit of interpreting for my (horribly racist) dad.

    6. The Historian

      I’ve got to agree with you about New Mexico. I once drove into Santa Fe just as the sun was rising and the colors were so breathtaking I just had to stop and gape!

      Beartooth Pass is also incredibly stunning if you love mountains, but sadly you won’t be looking at the scenery – you will be watching for the idiots dragging their big campers down the center of that very winding – and steep – road – and it isn’t a wide road. They are warned not to take campers over that road, but there are always those who think they are smarter than the road signs.

      But I also love driving over the northern prairies – I love the emptiness and the subtlety of the colors.

      1. WobblyTelomeres

        Beartooth Pass is fine *if* you get there at sunrise. Note: watch for deer at sunrise. Also helps to be on a motorcycle as you can pass the RVs, um, quickly.

        1. The Historian

          I had to drive from Billings to Cooke City several times a year for the job I had then, and after a couple of times driving the Beartooth, I decided to take the long road instead, through Bridger down towards Cody. It is longer but it is still very scenic and the road is well maintained and there is very little traffic on it. It also turned out that although the Bridger road was longer, it took less time to get to Cooke City than driving the Beartooth.

          I always did think it would be fun to motorcycle the Beartooth though. I envy you for doing that!

    7. Carolinian

      A fellow long miler I see. That drive across Kansas and the flat half of Colorado really is punishing and I’ve done it several times. It makes the case for a self driving car while you catch up on your Russian novels.

      And the boost to NC’s Blue Ridge Parkway leaves off Biltmore in Asheville although it is a rather pricey tourist attraction these days. The Parkway is an alternate route to the Smokies and Gatlinburg.

      1. Stick'em

        We went to Biltmore House a couple of years ago. In the driveway, the people at the gate charged us a $100 per person to get in. So I looks at the lady out the window of our Toyota Camry and I says, “You’re telling me the biggest house in America owned by the richest family in America needs my money to help pay the light bill?”

        And then I did the most akward U-turn you ever did see in this endless line of cars. We’ll never go back.

        1. Carolinian

          Probably the Downton Abbey effect. The tour used to be a lot less expensive before PBS viewers started fantasizing about being English lords and ladies. The estate was once known as much for its dairy and we grew up eating Biltmore ice cream.

          I don’t think you missed that much with u turn. The house is a Loire chateau built around a steel i-beam frame–not the real turtle soup but the mock.

          However the setting is splendid. If you know where to look (or precariously pull over) you can see the house from the Blue Ridge Parkway.

          That Vanderbilt heir owned much of Pisgah National Forest through which the Parkway runs.

          1. Stick'em

            I did a semester intership tracking black bears in the Pisgah. We’d put these radio collars on ’em. My job was to wander around carrying this thing that looked like a glorified TV house antenna while the professor nodded knowingly about the beeps. We collected data on stuff like how many acorns fell during the season. Black bears eat assloads of acorns.

            Good times. Except when I got chiggers. Chiggers are really bad in the Pisgah. Sit on one fallen pine tree trunk and… bam! Next day you want to scratch your skin off with a fork.

        2. LaRuse

          Good lord. My husband and I stayed in Brevard, NC, just south of Asheville for our brief honeymoon in 2005. We visited Biltmore, of course, and it was fancy and beautiful – I was particularly fascinated by the medieval tapestries and the rose garden. I much preferred our hike to Moore’s Falls Cavern in the Pisgah National Forest, and we have much more fun telling the story of trying to find BBQ for dinner in Brevard on the evening of July 4th (hint – we ended up eating at a cheap Chinese restaurant and had many laughs over the evening). I cannot imagine dropping a hundred bucks to see that house today.

        3. Balakirev

          About three decades ago when my wife and I lived and worked in NC, we took a few visits over the years to Biltmore House. The guides were proud that they’d maintained the exact furniture, etc–and it was amusing to find twin busts in the music room of Wagner and Massenet. (Wagner would have written a diatribe in response.)

          In our last trip, the Biltmores, we were told, had sold management of the house and tours to a business consortium of professionals (decorators for the wealthy, presumably). Ticket cost increases to one side, what was obvious to us was that the objects interspersed throughout the rooms–book groups, cigar clippers, etc–were now largely gone. They were replaced by more…attractive, less worn, modern alternatives. The busts were gone, of course. Poor Massenet. The House (or at least, the portion open to the public) looked less like a stroll through the late 19th and early 20th centuries, than a magazine ad for Homes of the Inordinately Wealthy Who Want Your Money.

          It was the last time we went.

    8. super extra

      oh my god i-70 across Kansas to Denver is brutal. I did most of it a few times a year as a kid, we lived in Wichita and went to Breckenridge. You can do the entire trip in 10 hours or a day, but your mind plays tricks on you staring at all that emptiness. If it was threatening snow – grey sky, grey road – there were optical tricks that made it feel dangerous AND boring, if that is even possible.

      1. lyman alpha blob

        First time I drove I -70 through Kansas was during a solo cross country trip and I was trying to make good time. Growing up in New England, I was amazed at the unending flatness of it all – you can see for miles in any direction. Since the interstate was straight and other traffic was light to nonexistent, I kept up a good rate of 85-90 mph. After a good bit of cruising, I saw a Volkswagon-sized tiny little hill in the distance breaking up the monotony and since no other cars were in sight for miles, I maintained a steady pace as I passed it.

        And of course there was a cop behind it.

        1. Larry Carlson

          Interstate 70 in Kansas is insanely boring, so unless I really need the slightly higher average speed to reach my destination at a reasonable time, I’ll use the parallel route that US-50 offers through the southern half of the state just for some variety. This also gives you the chance to break up your travel by stopping briefly at the attractions that southern Kansas offers: the Tallgrass Prairie Preserve, Strataca, the Big Well, and for those who have a morbid fascination with crime, the Clutter house.

          1. tegnost

            80 through nebraska and iowa is pretty bad. Who knew there could be so much corn.
            I’d say the worst weather, for driving and otherwise, is on a line between dallas and cleveland

      2. GC54

        I drove a detour from i70 because of construction near there 35 yrs ago en route to a job in my TR7 convertible. Miles from nowhere (= anywhere) two dots shimmering in the distance ahead near the road rapidly resolved into a pair of f16s 40 ft from the deck. They crossed over just in front of me; I lurched back into my lane after that astonishing distraction. 3 years later I was zoned out in bushwhacking hell en route to the terminal glacier around Mr Waddingron in BC, its summit our destination. We’d just struggled out of the alder onto a large boulder when a pair of RCAF f18s shot by along the melt river immediately adjacent this time only 20 ft above me. Clearly saw the wingman in helmet. 20th century barnstormers.

      3. Yves Smith

        Haha! “the stretch of I-70 from Denver to Kansas City the hands down most boring drive I’ve ever been on*”

        I did that drive as a kid. It’s also very empty so I drove it at about 95 MPH.

        As you get further east, state troopers expect just my sort of behavior. I got one of my only two speeding tickets evah.

    9. Josef K

      I’ll pile on, if there’s ONE drive to avoid in Washington State, it’s the very one recommended in this article. I-5 Seattle to Portland, or vice versa? It’s heavily trafficked including large numbers of 18-wheelers. Heavy traffic Portland to past Vancouver, a nice stretch around Kalama where you’re near the lower reaches of the Columbia river, from there to Olympia nothing special and I-5 is, like much USA interstate, showing its age. Past Olympia, the traffic gets increasingly bad, and I wouldn’t wish the Tacoma-Seattle stretch in either direction on my worst enemy. On top of the Death Race 2000-2020 traffic, there’s been major construction along this stretch since at least the 1990s, it’s interminable. There’s no rush hour from Tacoma to Everett, instead there’s a non-rush hour period from maybe 11PM to 5AM. Otherwise be prepared for anything, especially if it’s raining, which is often is.

      Washington is a scenic state and there are numerous scenic drives. The I-5 corridor has to be near the bottom. I doubt the “authors” have ever visited, their recommendation is just 180-degrees off.

      1. curlydan

        I was thinking of something similar to the I-5 jam. At this point, I’d take I-70 from Kansas City to Denver over I-35 from Dallas to San Antonio anyday. I-35 is just jam packed all those 300 miles…an un-ending sea of Walmart, Home Depot, HEB, repeat for 300 miles. Plus there’s tons of construction.

        I’m about to drive the KC to Denver route again. I’m planning on two side trips to Little Jerusalem ( and also the tallest point in Kansas (

        P.S. if you think KC to Denver is boring, definitely avoid anything around Lubbock, Amarillo, or the OK Panhandle.

    10. Jason Boxman

      The most instructive thing for me on that drive is how much it isn’t flat. I grew up in Florida, which is completely flat, so I was surprised that parts of the area were quite hilly. The best part was driving into Denver, though, once the mountains pop up over the horizon. Makes everything worth it. Spent the night at a random place in KS. On the way back, was so windy in KS I thought I’d see a tornado in a bad way, but weather subsided.

      1. Nikkikat

        We went on road trips every summer. We traveled all over the. Country, also visiting Canada and Mexico. I though New Mexico and Maine to be exceptional as well as Vermont but I will have to give Kentucky my nod. The trip from Louisville via 64 to Lexington. Most beautiful, Thoroughbred farms with horses grazing throughout beautiful green rolling pastures. White board fences. In spring, dogwood trees and Cherry trees. Beautiful state. Louisville has huge parks within the city that you think you are in the middle of no where.

        1. wol

          If you’re going, Hwy 60 between Lexington and Frankfort is better yet, and the Old Frankfort Pike is the best.

      2. Lexx

        There are accounts gathered into books of letters written to folks back home to loved ones, describing crossing the prairie and seeing the Rockies Mountains grow larger and larger as they grew nearer day by day. And the tone was probably dripping with gratitude… until they got to the Front Range and began to understand the challenge before them. Those mountains broke the ambitions of thousands on the Western Expansion Trails, and took their lives if they were unprepared or just unlucky.

        We see photos of covered wagons and pioneers sitting up front with reins in hand, but folks walked half the time to take the load off their animals. They were only halfway to the Oregon Territory. And from there, when you weren’t eating dust, Kansas was probably beautiful; the sunsets, the sunrises, the wildflowers, and the cottonwoods indicating the presence of water and shade where you could rest a spell*. It’s the speed of the mechanically cultivated landscape racing by that renders some stretches of road so inhospitable to my view. But someone(s) going back generations thought it was lovely and settled there then… or got to the Rockies and turned back and looked again at what Kansas had to offer and thought, ‘this will do for us.’ And it did for a few hundred years.

        *If I had a right nut, I’d give it have seen the herds of bison when they existed in the many glorious thousands (or millions).

    11. Earthling

      I think it would be good advice for all of us to NOT take these ‘best’ drives. After checking just a few of the states I am familiar with, none were what I knew to be ‘best’ or anywhere near it.

      1. WobblyTelomeres

        Well, that’s that, then. How aboot Canada? I really enjoyed the ride from Baie-Comeau to Labrador City. Verdant is inadequate a word.

      2. c_heale

        As a European, the outstanding feature my one visit to the States back in the early 90’s was the countryside. So much variety, and so much more untamed than European countryside. I took a greyhound from New York to Niagara to New Orleans and back to New York via Denver and Chicago.

        The USA is really beautiful.

    12. Steven A

      While growing up during the 60s our family would make an annual drive from NW Iowa to SE Alberta to visit my mom’s family. My parents, six siblings and I would be jammed in a station wagon that took us through the Dakotas and Saskatchewan, through some of the most mind-numbing terrain on the planet. Boredom would turn into hostility, which would turn into battles over the smallest patches of territory in the back seat. To this day I am amazed that my dad did not pull over in some lonely corner of North Dakota and drop the whole lot of us on the side of the road. @Lexx: we once took the route from Medicine Hat to Havre. You nailed it. It gave me an appreciation for the term “passing into oblivion.” IIRC, we crossed the border at an unmanned crossing and had to report to customs at Havre.

      I found the drive from Mankato to the Twin Cities on US 161 very enjoyable, it follows the Minnesota River northward toward its rendezvous with the Mississippi. I would add it to the list, but the enjoyment comes to an abrupt halt when you hit the Minneapolis suburbs.

    13. Ed Miller

      Best Roads. I was raised in Boise and I have loved driving winding mountain roads ever since I first got my license in 1962. My favorites include Bear Tooth Pass into Yellowstone but the most exciting Wyoming road for me was Alt. 14 going towards Lovell, WY on the way to Yellowstone. The road was the only road I travelled where I saw multiple cars quickly pull over so passengers could heave out the contents of their stomachs. All on one trip. For thrill enthusiasts, alas it is no more. Perhaps the feds got tired of the cleanup. The old road has been bypassed.

      Another sidewinder that missed recognition is the now-labeled US 191 from Springerville, AZ through Morenci going south towards I-10. When I lived in Tempe it still carried the more appropriate number of US 666. The Devil’s Highway.

      Now living in Portland Metro I immediately knew they bombed on I-5 in Puget Sound. What a slog.

      Ending on a positive note for those who venture into Idaho, the interstate is a waste. Drive north of Sun Valley to avoid the crowded wealthy elites and stop in Stanley for a day or more. Stanley Basin, with the Sawtooth Mountains as a backdrop was my childhood summer experience. Great place. Next continue north through Salmon into Montana on up to Missoula and then to Glacier National Park.

      1. tegnost

        Thanks Ed,
        The road through the sawtooths is pretty great…
        Further south, I’d like to nominate the mokee dugway to the list of “just make the detour, it’s worth it” list
        Hovenweep is off the beaten path and also worth the trip.

  11. Louis Fyne

    re. Mark Ames media whiplash

    Narrative changes don’t happen by accident. Someone is greasing the wheels to memory-hole another embarrassing foreign policy failure before the electons.

    Very often cited by media, Institute for the Study of War was founded by Victoria Nuland’s sister-in-law.

    Kimberly Kagan is married to Frederick Kagan, Nuland is married to Robert Kagan. Grift is a family affair, presuming the couples met on under the neocon section at match dot com.

    1. timbers

      Let me think this one through….so, MSM told us The Whole World (12%) was against Russia. If Russia wins, does that mean she defeated The Whole World and is that what MSN will report?

      1. Louis Fyne

        headline 1: Look over there, the Repubs will take your abortion.

        headline 2: Look over there, the Dems will take your guns

        headline 3: food prices rise 20% year over year

        result: people remember Ukraine as much as Twitter, the NYT and the EU are worrying about women’s rights
        in Kabul right now

    2. Val

      Ukraine will be Russia’s Vietnam (!) just like Philadelphia is America’s Vietnam or something hey look over there a squirrel.

  12. Amfortas the Hippie

    West central texas has pretty ranch roads,too
    Even with our recent drought….altho i prefer the roadside grass tall and nodding
    “Blue highways”, per wm leastheatmoon

    1. griffen

      Isn’t roughly now the peak or near peak for the ubiquitous Bluebonnet season in the state? I sorta recall that being a thing in the spring months. Weather dependent and all, of course.

  13. Wukchumni

    My Kevin who art in Wyoming virtually, was booed by the Trump faithful not too far from Old Faithful.

    Is a charm offensive in order?

  14. Safety First

    Re: Real Madrid vs. Liverpool

    Short version – I’ve seen better matches. If you insist on watching, start on around the 40th minute.

    Longer version.

    Match start delayed until 21:30 local because – based on what was said at the time, maybe there is more to the story this morning – idiot stadium minders shut down four out of five entryways and there is a mess of several thousand Liverpool supporters – with tickets, mind – milling about outside trying to get in. A few intrepid souls jump the fence and run past the seemingly highly unmotivated security, but on the whole, a right mess. The teams have to warm up a second time just to keep fresh. The commentators are – literally – reduced to talking about what each of them had for dinner the night previous; turns out one goes to a fancy restaurant in Paris so as to order pasta.

    Also, Camila Cabello’s opener decidedly unimpressive. Girl’s diction when singing live is horrible, her singing voice is pedestrian at best, and the backup dancers’ outfits are the wrong colour palette so they were more of a distraction from the frontwoman than an enhancement of said. Looked very second rate for a Champion’s League final, though expensive kind of second rate based on the production values.

    First half, 95% of the time Liverpool is attacking, while Real Madrid can barely get the ball out of their own half, and in general looks half-asleep. Real Madrid’s GK is the only thing keeping them in it, saving several key shots. By 30th minute or so, shots are 8:0 (shots on goal 5:0) in Liverpool’s favour. At the very end of the half, however, Real suddenly counter-attacks, and Liverpool’s GK and defence turn into Keystone Kops, however resulting goal for Real is disallowed due to offsides after a video review that seemingly takes an hour to get through. Not much by way of fouls, though a couple are still called very inconsistently.

    Second half, Real comes out visibly more motivated, probably after manager promised a long chat with Mr. Cricket Bat for anyone who doesn’t shape up. Liverpool still has advantage on possession and shots, but now has to deal with occasional sharp counter-attacks and a semblance of midfield game. Things get rather more physical as well, though still relatively clean (compared with some of Liverpool’s recent Premier League matches, at least). One of these counters ends with a beautifully made goal, I think off a Benzema pass, which proves to be the only score of the match. Liverpool then spends the rest of the match attacking, but keeps getting increasingly sloppy, so no last-minute miracles forthcoming.

    In other words, not exactly match of the year candidate, very uneven balance, lots of slop. Real’s first 20-30 minutes were barely watchable, not that they had much by way of possession. I have to believe the late start had at least some impact on things, as players (in any sport) generally prefer regular playing schedules, and in any case the second half was pushing way past 23:00 local time. Also, I am sure there’ll be some stories somewhere detailing the stadium entry fiasco, but honestly do not care enough to look.

    1. curlydan

      Basically, the game came down to the INCREDIBLE performance of Courtois, Real’s Belgian goalie who had 4-5 incredible saves. If you like masterful goalkeeping, this was a game to watch.

    2. annie

      that ‘beautifully made goal’ was made only because trent alexander-arnold was asleep at the switch and there was no one at all between vini and goal.

  15. jo6pac

    I’m not sure about this. The USSR had many invasions but it seems to me Russia only has one. Amerika on the other hand has how many since the new Russia started?

    In fact, he helped remind us, when it comes to invasions and criminal wars, how much the U.S. has in common with Putin’s Russia.”

    1. britzklieg

      Thank you. chuck’s statement is ridiculous and I can’t imagine why it was included

      1. pjay

        Chuck was actually quoting from Tom Hartmann’s introduction to the Gologorsky article. I don’t know what chuck’s own position is, but Hartmann’s is the typical “progressive” false equivalence illustrated by the quote. The Gologorsky article itself suffers from similar myopia:

        “What if, for example, organizers were now to begin setting up social-justice cafes — storefronts offering free coffee, music, talk, and educational materials aimed at informing and affecting political consciousness in this ever more social-mediated moment? Such cafés, or whatever their twenty-first-century equivalents might be, would offer an up-close, face-to-face way of countering rightwing disinformation, conspiracy thinking, and propaganda.”

        I’m trying to sort out the “rightwing” disinformation and propaganda on Russia and Ukraine from that of “politically conscious” progressives discussing these topics in “social-justice cafes.” Not that decades of “rightwing” political mobilization isn’t a thing; but most of us know it is not the *whole* thing. And for at least some of us, this false equivalence between US and Russian “imperialism” simply reinforces our own warmongering propaganda, however sincere one’s credentials as “peace activist” might be.

    2. Brian (another one they call)

      Wow. What did I miss? When did Russia invade another nation?
      I tried reading what Beverly Gologorsky, Not in Our Name and I don’t know what planet she lives on.
      She handily accuses Russia of doing what George Bush the idiot did. She has no offer of any truth or basis for her claim that Mr. Putin is a mass murderer like little Georgie.
      Let’s all rewrite history shall we? Hilarity ensues.

    3. Vandemonian

      I have read that there are only eleven years since 1788 when the USA has not been fighting in or invading another country. Two years since 1945 (1972 and 1979 IIRC).

  16. The Rev Kev

    “The tree-planting misconception”

    I can understand the point that the author is making and I sometimes wonder that because of climate change, that it would be best to try to row as wide of variety of indigenous trees and see which ones thrive through a sort of natural selection. But then my mind went off onto a tangent. Wukchumni has often talked about those fields of cash-crop trees being grown in California which are destroying the water table. So I wonder. The corporations growing all that acreage of trees – are they also claiming any carbon-credits because they are planting trees?

    1. Wukchumni

      So I wonder. The corporations growing all that acreage of trees – are they also claiming any carbon-credits because they are planting trees?

      Great question, and I don’t know the answer…

      We’re so stupid, we had pretty much a monopoly on almonds and screwed the pooch on price by overplanting and drove the price down by 70%, and utilized 1-time-use fossil water to do so.

    2. timbers

      I planted trees because when I got this house 6 years ago there were none except unattended ones at edge of property which I removed so as to reshape from scratch. The intention of my replanting was to cool the house and yard with shade and allow greater diversity for shade loving and intermediate plants. I’ve spotted praying mantis several times over the years and last week saw a grass hopper first since I think seeing them one as a child by the hordes.

      1. The Rev Kev

        Same deal here as we only had one tree near the house an it was as hot as in the house. Had to get rid of that tree because twice a year grubs would munch on all the leaves and when finished, would make their way down to the house. We have some trees along the house fence-line for shade but in the front and back yard we have two fast-growing racehorse trees. They break out in a colourful display of yellow flowers and when this happens, you can stand under those trees and listen to the buzzing bees working on each of those flowers-

  17. DJG, Reality Czar

    The Cardinal Richelieu article by one Spengler (quite a set of layers one on another) is worth reading, although it seems to me that Cardinal Richelieu has been indulging in a favorite pastime of reading Naked Capitalism.

    So: Although many of Richelieu’s predictions have already been examined and debated here, it is good to see them all in one place. It is also good to have reassurance that large portions of the civilized world aren’t fixated on or bothered by Blinken’s regular burblings.

    A quibble. The implication at the end is of a single blin, buckwheat pancake. Who eats just one buckwheat pancake? Woeful Spengler, not much of a hedonist, I’d say.

    1. super extra

      in his defense he did pluralize it with the -i ending! I agree by implication it came off as a single blin. dude clearly needs some smetana

    1. flora

      about the gun control debate after a tragedy:

      The debate quickly devolves into an either-or contest, either all guns or no guns. This isn’t an all-or-nothing question. imo. For example:

      Currently, machine guns and sawed-off shotguns are illegal and have been for decades. I’m personally in favor of making military grade assault rifles illegal. They were illegal in the US for 10 years, from 1994 to 2004. Some states still ban them. I personally don’t think that’s an infringement on the 2nd Amendment. But the “assault rifle” question is not an all-guns-or-no-guns approach to the firearms question, just as banning machine guns wasn’t an all-guns-or-no guns question.

      (Full disclosure: I’m a hunter, have two shotguns for upland bird hunting, and support the 2nd Amendment. )

      1. Tom Stone

        The AR-15 is NOT an assault rifle, it is not a select fire or fully automatic weapon.
        It is chambered in more than 40 different calibers and it is the most popular sporting rifle in the USA.
        There are well in excess of 12 Million and likely @ 15 Million AR-15’s in Civilian Hands in the USA.
        And Machine Guns are legal in some states where they are subject to Federal Laws which make them expensive enough that they are the toys of the well to do.
        You can rent them in both Texas and Nevada, and in Texas you can actually. rent a Tank…
        In the last yearlong reporting period a little less than 400 people were murdered by criminals using rifles of any kind.
        If it bleeds it leads and the murder of children is horrific no matter how committed.
        But be honest about the numbers and the risk, please.
        And if you DO think it would be a good idea to ban “Assault type Weapons” please define that term and then explain just how you would go about confiscating tens to hundreds of Millions of guns depending on how you define “Assault type weapons”.

        1. flora

          You are correct about the AR-15. I did not write “AR-15” in my edited comment( knowing it would be hard to explain), and knowing that’s what many people think an AR-15 is, and they are wrong. When I wrote ‘assault-style’ I was referring to a lay person’s visual misinterpretation of what an assault rifle is/does. I’m not talking about AR-15 when I say ‘military grade assault rifle’, although many people unfamiliar think since the rifle body looks like an assault rifle it must be an assault rifle.

          Define terms: An assault rifle has a switch that lets the shooter fire in either semi-automatic mode (as in many rifles normally sold to the public) or in fully automatic mode – like a machine gun, or in burst mode (short machine gun level firing time). I’m in agreement with your main point. I can only say we have no-nothing idiots in Congress who can’t be bothered to learn details. I wouldn’t put it past them to do something idiot on this issue to score public point unrelated to actual details.(Not a comforting thought.)

          I thank you for your important questions. I respect your underlying concerns and share them.

          1. flora

            shorter: I used the words ‘style’ and ‘type’ to mean ‘visual appearance’ to the general public, and not to mean ‘function’. That was imprecise. Sorry for the muddled comment.

            1. orlbucfan

              I am totally opposed to military weapons including bazookas being available to civilians. Since when does a homeowner need a (family blog) bazooka?? I have no problem with rifle or handgun ownership as long as the owner is licensed and carries insurance just like car ownership.

        2. marym

          I think what non-experts mean by assault weapons are those that fire a large number of powerful rounds within a small number of seconds over a period of time without pause. Probably also some definition of the type of damage – DNA was required to identify the children in TX.

          Those who are experts, and who claim to want weapons for uses other than massacre (hunting, home or self defense, target practice) can step up in clarifying how to draw the line on the definition of what can and can’t be legally purchased, in order to lessen the opportunities for massacre.

          A generous buy-back program and penalties for ownership after a certain implementation period would help reduce what’s already out there – as you say it’s not an easy fix.

          In addition to the problem of the proliferation of extremely deadly weapons, we have the problem of what has become a sub-culture of celebration and glorification of guns. There were pictures last year of members of Congress tweeting Christmas photos of themselves and their families including young children with deadly weapons, shooting themes in campaign ads. I recently saw a twitter thread of photos with people – again including children – with huge numbers of weapons spread out on their porch, roof, etc. If gun owners want to argue that they are responsible members of society, what are they doing to counteract this sub-culture? If they find it convenient to look away from that, they’re being used.

          1. LawnDart

            Unless you live on a ranch in the middle of BFE, you have to be some kind of asshole to utilize a rifle or large caliber pistol for home-defense, especially in urban/suburban surroundings: drywall and vinyl siding don’t slow bullets, so unless you want a manslaughter or negligent homocide rap for whacking your neighbors… If you LARPers feel you gotta have a tough-looking gat, consider going to the doc for a penis-extension, some blue-pills, and maybe even some mechanical assistance. Seriously.

            Pro-tip: a 12-gauge shotgun with #7 birdshot will knock the Hulk down in your typical engagement, leaving your target in shock and bleeding-out, plus you really don’t need to worry too much about accuracy: point, shoot, and don’t sweat center-mass too much because you’ll get it with rounds two or three. If you want to finish the job with certainty, follow-up with a shot to where the head meets the spine, or (if sufficiently vengeful) pull down their drawers, inset revolver or long-barrel, squeeze once– a semi-auto may jam on the meat-spray, and is a beast to clean if you aren’t ditching it (which you should).

            What can I say: I studied my favorite real-life anti-hero, Chicago’s own Harry Aleman carefully (we knew and had dealings with some of the same people, and in my (former) line of work I had to know who I was dealing with and how they did their thing). I respect the guy, as a professional: he lived by a code, and his adherence to that code got him sent away for life (he left a witness because of that no women, no children thing).

            Honestly, pump-action is where it’s at: alone, the sound of chambering a shell will deter most would-be attackers– it’ll make your balls crawl into your belly real fast if you’re on the receiving end. F#@k, why the hell would you ever want to live in a place or live a life where you might need a gun? Unless hunting game, I never want to see or touch one again– they are so not cool.

          2. ambrit

            It could also be a covert message from the PMC class to the ‘deplorables.’
            “Fear us. We are gunned up to the max. Follow our orders or else we might use them.”
            The public display of weaponry has been a form of opression for millenia.
            One of those “forms of oppression” is enforced conformity.

            1. marym

              The elite right-wing politicians posing with guns are appealing to a non-elite right-wing constituency of people who think they’re on the same side. As far as the non-elite sflaunting their guns on the street or social media, they project an image more petit bourgeois than pmc. At any rate, they have enough money to own quite the stashes of weaponry and accessories.

      2. scott s.

        Machine guns and sawed-off shotguns are not illegal. It is illegal to transfer a machine gun manufactured after 1986. But if one jumps through the hoops to get a dealer FFL and Class III license and pay the special operational tax you can get a “dealer’s sample”. But for other machine guns, short barreled shotguns and rifles, “silencers”, “destructive devices “or “any other weapons” it is possible to make or transfer one after first paying the making tax and transfer tax. There’s also certain exceptions for “curio and relics” and “loose black powder” firearms.

        Full disclosure: I am not currently but have in the past been a licensed collector of curio and relic firearms (so-called 07 FFL).

  18. Stick'em

    re: Antidote du Jour

    I noticed the average right-wing internet commenter from the Land of Kek often has a fascination with calling people “cucks,” so decided to look it up…

    You prolly know this “cuck” is short for cuckhold, as in this odd fetish with a husband who likes to watch his wife have sex with other men.

    What I didn’t realize until just now is the term “cuckhold” derives from the cuckoo bird. As you also prolly know, the cuckoo bird lays its egg in the nest of another species of bird. The “other” momma bird then typically raises the cuckoo chick as her own. Sometimes the cuckoo chick even throws the “other” momma’s chicks out of the nest. This is called being a brood parasite.

    In biology, the “cuckhold” in this cuckoo bird situation is the “other” father. The male of the non-cuckoo species wastes his energy feeding/housing chicks who are not biologically related to him.

    So if the common cuckoo in the antidote du jour appears to be giving you the side eye, this is prolly why.

    1. Stick'em

      Which brings me back to an observation made in childhood. At some point during the 6th grade in public school, after getting off the school bus first thing in the a.m., I accidentally went into the cafeteria instead of my classroom. There, I was amazed to find a hundred or so black kids eating biscuits and powdered eggs. I had no idea anyone ate breakfast at school. The scene looked something like this:

      So when I got home, I asked my mom how it was all these kids got to eat for free and why didn’t I get to do so. My mom was a schoolteacher, so she knew the deal. She said those kids had families that were too poor to feed ’em regularly before school. She said imagine if I was hungry all day, trying to sit in classes and pay attention and learn something. I prolly wouldn’t accomplish much other than thinking about my belly.

      And those kids grow up to be adults. And a world full of people (of any color) who didn’t pay attention in school is a bad thing. So I never complained about it again. I felt lucky we had plenty of biscuits at home and the school system cared enough to feed these kids.

      I guess that makes me a “cuck” to the average conservative from Kekistan. So be it.

    2. Josef K

      A cuckold is a man who’s wife is cheating on him with another man (or men). It’s not the fetish you describe. A cuckolded man is not likely to be in favor of the cuckolding.

        1. Josef K

          Or you could spend more time looking at an actual dictionary. Just because the latest and least greatest generation of internet-debased English speakers decides to further pervert English until A means Q, doesn’t mean we all have to fall on our knees in line.

          1. Yves Smith

            Your tone is completely out of line and you are asking to be blacklisted.

            Anyone who know the history of language knows the meaning of words is fluid over time. “Sophisticated” once meant “shallow and showy,” the near opposite of what it means now.

        2. Oh

          Shakespeare uses the word cuckold and it was to mean that a wife was being unfaithful to her husband.

      1. Mildred Montana

        Stick’em’s definition is correct. So is yours. In other words, two acceptable definitions.

        Now, as far as man’s wife cheating with another 𝘸𝘰𝘮𝘢𝘯, I’m not sure.

          1. ambrit

            Include Jackie Bouvier, aka. Kennedy, later Onassis. She had somewhat the same problem.
            Perhaps the term ‘Political Wives’ would do for now. (Soon to be ‘Political Spouses.’)

        1. Josef K

          No, cuckold means what it has since the word was invented; cuckhold can mean whatever the current uneducated masses decides it means.

          1. tegnost

            If like me you have nothing else to do today and are a chaucer nut this pdf is entertaining on the subject…


    3. IM Doc

      Is it a commentary about our recent times how this word cuckold is used?

      I am old enough to be able to truthfully say that I had never heard the word until it was uttered by my aged professor in my Chaucer course in college. He looked and talked and acted just like John Houseman in The Paper Chase. Just the thought of him peering down at me over those reading glasses chills my spine today.

      And Chaucer in the form of The Miller’s Tale has one of the best takes on the concept in history.

      The ending is still hysterical after almost 900 Years.

      A taste – The original Middle English on the left and modern English on the right. It puts a whole new spin on red hot branding irons, bodily functions and Noah’s flood.

      1. rowlf

        During a recent office conversation concerning the company relaxing grooming standards over the years, a young lady mentioned she had been working on her beard.

        Chaucer definitely smacked me upside the head.

  19. Mikel

    “Why Did It Take 35 Years for the World To Get a Malaria Vaccine?” The Wire

    “Dubbed RTS,S, it promises a 30% reduction in severe malaria in fully vaccinated children.”

    Why not ask but frame it with the truth instead of pharma talking points?

    What was wrong with asking: “why did it take 35 years to get a malaria treatment that produces about a 30% reduction in severe malaria in children”

    That is exactly what took 35 years.

    Meanwhile, they have natural remedies in Africa that perform better. But that’s a side note.

    They can’t write a straight, no BS sentence about anything coming from pharma companies.

    They want to present the illusion that they are solving issues they don’t know how to solve and with what they think they know.

    1. Oh

      I was thinking that the vaccine wouldn’t be a money maker being that malaria was mostly in the poorer countries.

  20. The Rev Kev

    “‘China is all-out against us’: an interview with Lithuania’s foreign minister”

    Why are so many leaders of nations acting like petulant children? For the sake of one word, he thought it worth trashing the economy of his country so what? That he could feel better about himself? To get social media likes? Really? A lot of his comments don’t make sense in a way and I think that there is a missing piece here. Apparently the UK’s Boris wants to get together a union of nations that would have their own foreign policies and the like and which would work outside the EU. I believe that the core nations would be the UK, the Ukraine and the Baltic States. And going by some of the things that Landsbergis says in this article, I am sure that he would sign up for that. So if you read that article with this in mind, a lot more of what he says makes sense. But he seems to suffer from childhood traumas when he says-

    ‘When I saw Russian troops in Ukraine in the first weeks of war, I remembered the same troops – looking exactly the same – driving the streets of my capital. There would be parades throughout the main street in Vilnius. The same looking people, same looking vehicles.’

    Yeah, Russian troops holding a parade in your own country are pretty bad. Fortunately Lithuania has managed to replace them now – with parades of Nazi SS veterans and skinheads so, progress?

    1. OnceWereVirologist

      Must have been a precocious little fellow to be traumatized by the presence of Soviet troops in the streets of his capital given that Lithuania declared itself independent when he was eight years old.

    2. digi_owl

      Russia basically inherited the ancestral sin of USSR.

      And as is typical, those who were anti-USSR ends up tipping so far the other way that they became pro-fascism.

      1. Polar Socialist

        Russia also did take upon itself all the debts of Soviet Union, so little Landsbergis’ granddad got a clean start for his new state.

        Probably the biggest sin of Russia was that in the end the liberty sucked and Baltic countries turned into crapholes of crime and prostitution until EU sorta pulled them out of their misery.

        1. Soredemos

          Literally every member state of the USSR benefited from being a member, some of them massively so.

    3. DZhMM

      Please don’t make the mistake of thinking that our Landsbergis, Grabauskaite, Nauseda, or any others which we are given to choose from represent any interests otther than the ones who bought them in Washington and/or Langley (depending on the currency of the transaction). There was one moment, 1,5 cycles back or so, where we actually managed to have Lithuania’s views at least expressed at a meaningful level. Greens and Peasants came from nowhere, and snuck past to major wins. But not to worry, the owners of our government were handily able to afford to buy out and steal that party for themselves too, so the moment ended quickly enough.

      We just wait here for the US to die a little bit more, so we can go back to being not worth their effort. We are already not worth the effort for Russia, and as long as Poland stays distracted, that keeps us out of danger from our other bad neighbor. But for now, the first thunder has banged, gardens need weeding, there is meat to be cooked and beer drunk with friends and neighbors, and Landsbergis and Nauseda can talk over in Vilnius.

      From your last paragraph, Latvia and Lithuania are different places.

      1. The Rev Kev

        Quite correct that and thanks for the correction. I chose the wrong link so here is another-

        The EU and NATO are seen as friendly agencies for the Baltic States but as seen with the Ukraine, they are being sold out for bigger geopolitical gains. And the danger is that when the Ukraine folds, that Poland and the Baltic States will be nominated as the next “Ukraine.” Those parades should have been shut down for who they represent but were given oxygen to breath. It is from these groups that an Azov battalion could be raised in each of the Baltic States and it would be given the blessings of the EU and NATO if it happened. But the truth of the matter is what John Wyndham once wrote-

        ‘The human spirit continued much as before – 95 per cent of it wanting to live in peace, and the other 5 per cent considering its chances if it should risk starting anything. It was chiefly because no one’s chances looked too good that the lull continued.’

        And have a beer for me at your next BBQ.

        1. DZhMM

          The 11 March event in Vilnius featured a very large contingent of Ukrainian ‘refugees’ (if you can call someone from Lviv, where the war is nowhere around, by such a name). And of course, they come carrying all their garbage with them. But not to worry – if even 20 stay of the 20.000 here today, that will be quite a lot. They came to Europe when the EU finally opened its doors to them, but I imagine their aim was for Frankfurt, not for Elektrenai. Many have already started to go back home, even, if not to move on.

          So they make their noise. To be honest, some of us are hoping that Poland ends up keeping a lot of theirs. The trouble large groups of Ukrainians cause is sure to help keep Poland internally distracted, which has always been best for her neighbors.

          (no promises to keep it only to one beer for you :)

          1. The Rev Kev

            I have no idea what is happening with the Poles. They seem to want Galicia back again – the same area where so many of those Nazis come from. And with that recent law that says that Poles can be appointed to Ukrainian governmental position as well as run for office, that could turn that whole area into a s*** show. If the Baltic States were wise, at that point they may want to consider shutting their border with Poland to stop the trouble spreading there. For your entertainment-

   (13:20 mins)

              1. The Rev Kev

                Now that is something worth thinking about as a motivator. A Poland that stretches as you say from the Baltic to the Black Sea.

  21. super extra

    re: Germany has been cash free all weekend

    Certificates expiring en masse and creating havoc on internet-connected devices is a wildly underrated threat to pretty much anything reliant on a network connection. The certs are also a security risk, since the options are either update the cert regularly (call over the network to the intermediate/parent cert), have a very long cert tied to the device’s lifetime that does not update (five years is not uncommon), or let the cert expire and render the device useless for purpose. What often happens is the companies that make these devices go out of business during the product lifecycle so the certs have nowhere to call home to update.

    I don’t have a wide-ranging solution because it would depend on where the devices’ certs live locally. Sometimes they can be replaced with some clever reverse engineering. A lot of times they can’t, because security (like the cert is baked into a trust anchor on a chip). This is probably going to speed up (as in hitting more and more widely-varied systems) over the next five years or so.

    1. The Rev Kev

      As a temporary small-time fix, what about resetting the computer’s clock several months so that those certificates will still think that they are not out of date yet?

      1. Louis Fyne

        presumably clocks sync their time with a server to prevent exactly what you describe.

        you must be connected to the cloud (which generally is a non-issue). resistance is futile

        1. Joe Renter

          The article points out that a technician needs to do a per machine reset. Opps

      2. super extra

        alas in today’s world most computing stuff is expected to be distributed (scattered around with no assumed relationship across different networks, as opposed to singular or monolithic, where it’s just one big computer) so everything has different clocks and sometimes the devices don’t have their own clock so they rely on regular updates from another clock elsewhere on the network. The certs themselves usually have no mechanism for renewal or expiration, just a date/time assigned for when they stop working. The issue arises when that out-of-date cert is presented as a credential for network access – the keystore on the other side checks the date/time, sees it is out of date, and refuses to honor the request. the device still works, but none of the network functions work, and unless there is a means to update the certificate, it is probably dead for intended purpose.

      3. digi_owl

        Would not surprise me if more and more devices only allows such things to be accessed after having been unlocked via the insertion of a valid security key of some sort. Aka it can only be done by a on site certified technician.

        And i suspect that we will see the humble PC go in that direction as well, given time. All in the same of “security”.

        Seriously, big tech behave as if the general population are a bunch of drooling apes.

        1. albrt

          “big tech behave as if the general population are a bunch of drooling apes”

          I wonder where they got that idea.

          1. orlbucfan

            I am totally burned out on big aka high tech. They can’t come up with a proper, detailed Owner’s Manual in paper form? What’s their problem? We’ve got to deal with constantly replacing these devices, but the PTB who make them are semi-literate?? That doesn’t include the $$$profits$$$, of course. (Snort.)

    2. Glen

      Here’s some more (already outdated) information:

      Millions of iPhones, TVs and other devices could go offline Thursday — here’s why [updated]

      I would see this as a compelling argument to ensure that NONE of my basic tools, appliances, vehicles, etc, are part of the Internet of Crap. (I think they call it the Internet of Things, but anyTHING with that much built in dependency is CRAP.)

  22. Mikel


    “Neither will many consumers lose much since Tesla’s cars are hardly for the “masses but for a niche community”, according to JD Concord’s Sharma.”

    Shhh. Don’t tell the fanboys….

  23. Carolinian

    That’s a droll Cardinal Richelieu meets Asia Times. Worth a look. And under “interesting if true”

    Before the war Ukraine had 45 million people on paper but only 33 million actually in the country, because half the adult population had left to work elsewhere. At least 14 million of those have been driven from their homes, and most of them will not return. After all, the Poles, Hungarians and Germans are short of people and will gladly accept immigrants from Ukraine rather than from the Middle East or Africa.

    So virtual reality is indeed an appropriate metaphor for a country the Russians call “country 404”–even as one does feel sorry for the remaining millions saddled with a leadership as feckless and dishonest as our own.

  24. Louis Fyne

    US shootings: Norway and Finland have similar levels of gun ownership, but far less gun crime The Conversation

    in no order:

    both have populations less than New Jersey, are not de-industrialized, neutron bombed urban-rural economies,

    have better educational outcomes, do not have to pay their share of national defense, as the US happily picks up the tab in exchange for fielty,do have decent health care,

    do not live in a state of nihilism like much of America

    1. Katniss Everdeen

      Throwing the disinformation flag.

      A just society with a strong common cultural identity and ” systems of political accountability, welfare safety nets, comprehensive education provision and cultures of trust and confidence” has nothing to do with it.

      It’s just the guns, and always will be only the guns. The only way to fix it is to take away the guns. All the guns. Only cops, the military and bodyguards for the masters of the universe can have guns. That will fix it. Everything will be fine then. Nothing else matters.

      Everybody says so.

      1. rowlf

        A just society with a strong common cultural identity and ” systems of political accountability, welfare safety nets, comprehensive education provision and cultures of trust and confidence” has nothing to do with it.

        Nailed it. Well stated.

        The Balkanized United States. No common center that could threaten the elites.

        1. JBird4049

          I think that what is being ignored is that like with Covid and its vaccines, American “healthcare,” and the upcoming famines a few have and will continue to make fabulous amounts of money from the lives of the many.

          We live in an enormous world wide abattoir used to extract wealth instead of blood from it and its inhabitants. Guns and the police and their function within the carceral state is more of this. Just look at the politicians. It is just a wonderful opportunity for political propaganda instead of fixing all the causes of our pain and death for them.

      2. marym

        The people who want to take away none of the guns also think the military, cops, and bodyguards should be fully armed, and nothing else matters.

      1. digi_owl

        Yeah, most Norwegian guns will be bolt action rifles and over-under shotguns.

        Well suited for hunting, not so massacres.

        If you want a pistol you either need to give the local police a damn good reason (like say being the personal bodyguard of the king), or be a member of a pistol shooting club. And in the latter case that only allow you to own one and transport it (in a locked case) between range and home. And that still require a year long membership beforehand and a letter club president.

        And even those that own say a rifle is required these days to have them in a locked cabinet, with the chamber removed and in a separate locked case.

        That said, we did have a guy go nuts with a bow and arrow last year. Sadly it became more of a tragedy than it needed to be because the officers that initially responded didn’t bring a riot shield.

        Also i seem to recall Finland had a US style school shooting some years back, because they had more lax handgun regulations at the time. But i think they since clamped down on it.

        1. Robert Gray

          > And even those that own say a rifle is [sic] required these days to have them in a locked
          > cabinet, with the chamber removed and in a separate locked case.

          Erm … just how is that done, exactly?

          1. OnceWereVirologist

            Presumably he means the bolt. Some jurisdictions in Australia have a similar rule.

            1. Robert Gray

              Hard to get the bolt and the chamber mixed up, isn’t it, if you have any idea what you’re talking about? Who knows, maybe she or he means the magazine?

        2. Stick'em

          “Norway has some of the strictest gun control laws around today. It is only possible to obtain permission to own a weapon by having officially documented a use for the gun with the local police and taken extensive training relevant to the intended use of the weapon. Generally, this falls into two categories: hunting and sports shooting.

          The first step to owning a firearm in Norway is to get a Våpenkort – a firearm permit specific to what you plan to use the firearm for.

          For hunters in Norway, it is required to complete a 30-hour course, and pass an exam that covers a variety of topics such as responsible gun handling, and the environmental impacts of hunting.

          Once the course is completed and exam passed, all that is left to do is to register with the government and receive a hunting license. This license needs to be renewed each year by paying a fee, and in some cases, spending a day at a certified firing range.”

          Imagine that. People can own firearms and simultaneously have to take a safety course and pass a competency exam. Who knew? Now what to do with this giant magic hammer…

  25. flora

    two things:

    The Daily Mail pictures are interesting for what they show, or suggest, about the difference between Border Patrol officers – bare headed or wearing baseball caps and primarily using pistols (it looks like) vs. local police kitted out with military gear, riot helmets and carrying rifles, lots of rifles (and saying they need more resources). I’m starting to think sending military gear to local police forces is dulling their wits. Are they waiting for their gear to tell them what to do?

    Jacinda Ardern talking at Harvard about democracy and gun control? That is just too perfectly perfect, on all points. There’s a joke there but I can’t think of a snappy one-liner just now.

    1. Glen

      Somebody needs to clue Jacinda in that America’s elites are perfectly happy with the status quo. They have had over twenty years to make changes, yet here we are.

      She needs to protect her country. If NZ continues to makes NZ citizens of the American psychopathic oligarchs, waving big bucks to make bolt holes to escape the American hellscape, then NZ may end up becoming an extension of the American neoliberal paradise. And that would be a real tragedy.

  26. jr

    Here is a fun Jimmy Dore bit with a video montage of the Russiagate scam featuring all the usual suspects. I really enjoy these kinds of wrap-ups as it allows me to avoid watching or reading the none-sense these idiots put out:

    I’ve seen similar videos before and it strikes me how repetitive the language from the talking heads is. Not keywords like “Alfa Bank” but little words like connecting the “dots”. The hive-mind in action.

  27. Stick'em

    “The collective assessment of the studies is the distribution of military equipment to local law enforcement doesn’t seem to affect outcomes one way or the other. It doesn’t reduce crime, it doesn’t lead to an increase in crime. It doesn’t seem to reduce officer injuries. It doesn’t seem to increase them either.”

    So if shoveling military grade weapons to cops doesn’t reduce crime or protect the officers, what’s the point?

    The only point I can see is the escalation of an arms race between police and citizens, which ultimately benefits arms manufacturing corporations and their stockholders.

    Cui bono?

  28. griffen

    Germany and the issue with the payment system. Would seem like an isolated occurrence on a dated, due to be retired model could have been foreseen to cause problems if the certificate was known to have an expiry date set 10 years or roughly that long ago. Did a brief search and found an article on the service disruption. Don’t power down or make a reboot attempt.

    Another thought. It’s 2022….surely an engineer can be found to provide an efficient response to alleviate the hassle. Unless these were coded with punch cards written in Fortran (for example).

  29. Tom Stone

    The author of the “Liberal Case for Gun Ownership” thinks Tyranny might happen here in the USA!
    In the Land of the Free which imprisons a higher percentage of its populace than any other Nation in History.
    Where Habeas Corpus was revoked in the 2016 NDAA.
    Where the president ordered the murder of a 16 year old American Citizen (Abdul-Rahman Al Awlawki) who had never been accused of a crime.
    There was a bit of collateral damage, @ 2 dozen humans killed and wounded.
    Where the Military ignored a lawful order from the Commander in Chief to withdraw US troops from Syria and lied to him about it with no consequences.
    Remember John Yoo, the Lawyer who decided that torture wasn’t torture?
    He’s a tenured professor of Law at ultra liberal UC Berkeley.
    Was it Zubaydah who was buried alive for 120 hours, waterboarded 80 times and repeatedly anally raped while in US Custody (He’s still in US Custody after 20 years) despite his captors knowing he was innocent?
    And the good folks at the NSA care about ALL of us enough to record every form of electronic communication we use…
    I suspect this eminent scholar and Historian may be right,there is a chance that the “Land of the Free” might become a Tyranny.

    1. The Rev Kev

      I’m afraid that this guy needs to get a grip and stop with the agitprop. For a start, that ship that was sunk – the “Helt” – was sunk by one of those wonky Ukrainian mines that he mentioned, not the Russkies. And there is a port open now – Mariupol – and yesterday I saw video of a ship docking there. The Russian Navy has cleaned out all the Ukrainian mines off-shore while army teams have cleaned out some 12,00 bombs tat the Ukrainians have left on-shore. That port is now open for business. And as Yves has mentioned, the Russians have opened up not one but two safety channels out for ships to leave safely. Wanna know a big worry for me? After each harvest the Ukrainians held back about 8 million tons of grain for their own use. There is such a mania now for getting that wheat out that the west may want the Ukraine to export out all their wheat, including their reserves, in order to make world wheat prices go down. Which would leave the Ukrainians where exactly? But this uni history professor just gets hysterical in his conclusion and is refusing to look at the facts.

      1. RobertC

        I didn’t intend the article to be definitive. I should have said “A lightweight survey” instead.

        As in so many food shortages the problem is grain delivery to the processors, distributors and consumers. There is enough grain in storage outside Ukraine to avoid famine this year together with the means for its delivery under UN auspices but the problem is priorities for the world at large (eg, why should China donate grain when Egypt refuses to accept “stolen” grain).

        And as you pointed out that dysfunction augmented by the direct and indirect parties to the US/NATO-Russia conflict is affecting rational responses to Ukraine’s grains in storage and in the ground. Starvation is just one component of the economic war the US initiated with its sanctions.

        In three days Albania will replace the US for the UNSC presidency.

        1. The Rev Kev

          I wasn’t having a go at you but the sheer number of professors and the like coming out with this sort of rubbish is starting to get to me. It is these very same people that should be giving dispassionate advice from their posts for proper judgements to be made & actions as to be taken but it seems that they are willing to sign up for ‘the current thing’ so as not to be socially isolated. And as a result, we will be seeing hunger spread across the world and we all saw how a much milder food price rise played out during the Arab spring. How will we in the west cope when we discover food shortages will be effecting us as well? Not looking good.

      2. c_heale

        The West doesn’t care about the Ukrainian people. If they did they would have sent troops not just weapons. And they wouldn’t have put biological weapons labs there either.

  30. RobertC

    Imperial Collapse Watch

    In addition to the Belt-and-Road Initiative, China’s Global Development Initiative is the most serious threat to US unilateralism because it operates within the framework of the UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

    China has proposed global goals for improving the process of global development amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Proposed by Chinese President Xi Jinping at the opening of the 76th session of the U.N. General Assembly in September 2021, China’s Global Development Initiative (GDI) has support from nearly 100 countries and international organizations. Zhang Jun, China’s permanent representative to the United Nations has emphasized that the initiative is just one action of many that will accelerate the U.N. 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

    The U.N. 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development has ambitious goals of eradicating poverty and hunger everywhere, combating inequalities, building inclusive societies, promoting human and gender equality and more by 2030. While these goals are hefty and require immense work, China’s Global Development Initiative is opening doors for the U.N.’s 2030 Agenda to become a reality.

    In China’s initiative, the goals of “re-prioritizing development, renewing commitments to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), revitalizing global partnerships and reactivating development cooperation” are consistent with the U.N.’s Agenda. Many working with the U.N. greatly support China’s goals. For example, U.N. Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed has remarked that China’s Global Development Initiative will keep the U.N. 2030 Agenda’s pledge of leaving no one behind.

  31. RobertC


    Biden’s 40 years of foreign policy ‘expertise’ will be remembered as who lost Afghanistan and who lost Ukraine is a millstone around Europe’s neck as Zelensky oversees its dissolution.

    …Curiously, soon afterward, on May 24, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky announced “joint customs control” on Ukraine’s border with Poland, which he described as “also the beginning of our integration into the common customs space of the European Union… (and) a truly historic process.” Zelensky said Ukraine-Poland relations are “finally completely free of quarrels and the legacy of old conflicts. I would like the brotherhood between Ukrainians and Poles to last forever… our unity of Ukrainians and Poles is a constant that no one will break.” Two days before that, Polish President Andrzej Duda had visited Kiev.

    To be sure, Zelensky and Duda acted with US approval. In effect, Ukraine’s sovereignty over its western regions bordering Poland is eroded. Kiev has also announced plans to grant special legal status to Polish citizens. Plainly put, a de facto “merger” is under way.

    1. The Rev Kev

      Merger? Or Anschluss? To tell you the truth when I first heard about this, my first thought was of the merger between Boeing & McDonnell Douglas and what it meant for the former.

    2. Polar Socialist

      Zelensky and Duda acted with US approval

      Not to be petty or anything, but one would think they’d need EU approval for something like this. Unless they (Poland and US) really want to rub it in to EU that they don’t mean a thing anymore.

  32. JEHR

    Re: More Fun Than Fun: Strife in the Harmonious World of Honey Bees

    It is really too bad that some of this insect information cannot be applied to human beings. “Kinship, coercion and conflict” in Ukraine could be dealt with if we would take heed from the honey bees’ behaviour, where the bees limit conflict and promote cooperation in order to reach a desirable resolution, without killing too many of the hive. Just a thought.

  33. wilroncanada

    Just heard that Arkansas traveler (all the way to Toronto and stayed there), Ronnie Hawkins, for whom buddy Billie Clinton once played sideman, passed away, age 87. Robbie Robertson and the other Boys in the Band will be in mourning for their biggest break. Hope the Big Rocker in the Sky gives him “40 Days to Get Back Home”.

  34. Wukchumni

    I’m in SF and not a homeless person to be seen, of course i’m ensconced in the airport terminal, a sanctuary of sorts and home of the $5 cup of joe.

  35. Maritimer

    It is heartening to see such a courageous person who works for Monopoly Baseball’s Oligarchs take such an ethical stand for Gun Control.

  36. LawnDart

    Well, this disappeared into the ether twice, immediately upon attempts to post with active links, and I don’t think it’s on NC’s end because you’ve linked to the sources before.

    Very good writing, with regards to a certain special operation– honestly, some of the most thorough and concise writing that I’ve seen on the subject:

    Russia’s Necessary and Legal Military Response to US/ NATO Aggression in Ukraine

    Evidence shows that Russia’s special military operation (SMO) in Ukraine is a legally justified, critically necessary, and predictable response to the US’ recent escalation of its decades-long aggression against Russia in Ukraine…

    Via Saker, 5/28

    And, also excellent, this short article which has aged like fine wine:

    Conflict In The Ukraine: Do Americans Realize What Is At Stake?

    Seven years after President Biden and Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs, Victoria Nuland, played key roles in carrying out the 2014 putsch that toppled Ukraine’s democratically elected president and ignited a deadly civil war, the U.S. and NATO have escalated hostilities toward Russia in Ukraine…

    Via link from Saker article to Anti-War dot com.

  37. JBird4049

    >>>Accused of Cheating by an Algorithm, and a Professor She Had Never Met

    Being accused of cheating is like sudden death for one’s education or at least an almost automatic failed grade and expulsion from class. Nice to know that people insist on using imperfect, often biased, even racist, algos.

    Being forced to take online classes due to Covid (and I guess our soon to be new friend Monkeypox) and paying full freight for this substandard education is already annoying. Being accused for committing a serious academic crime using stupid… let’s say stuff… by algos you can’t challenge and by people you don’t know would be absolutely enraging.

    However, I am sure that people are making bank doing this, and of course, the Holy Computer (Program) is Never Wrong, so it’s all good although Cathy O’Neil (Mathbabe) likes to say, IIRC, that algorithms are biases in code. Thus showing another perfect example of Neoliberal Crapification.

    If I ever run into excrement like this while having to be responsible for something like ten thousand dollars a semester, I am going to really annoyed. However, this being California, Land Of the Professional Managerial Class and the Religion of Neoliberalism and anyway to computerize and “improve” things is not to be past by. I best plan on some more meditation. Maybe even medication.

    1. Wukchumni

      My dad loathed Nixon and maybe Kissinger even more, and pops similar to Kissinger-never lost his European accent, and at parties my mom told me that people would always mention how he sounded like Henry, little innocent arrows aimed at him, unintentionally hitting their mark.

      1. MarkT

        This particular quote is jarring. Especially in the context of his roots.

        “The elderly are useless eaters.”

        1. MarkT

          I fear we have seen the marriage of the vengeful offspring with the old aristocratic parent. Nothing good can come from this. Not sure what the neighbours will make of it, even though they have been striving to keep up with it. Or not. There’s a bear knocking on the door. It now wants to be left alone.

        2. orlbucfan

          What’s Kissinger’s age now, 98? Evil, malignant creeps like him seem to live forever. The good? Rarely. To be perfectly honest, I do not want to live that long.

          1. MarkT

            Oh the irony. Me neither. And I will rest peacefully knowing that I don’t have all those lives in my hand.

  38. Mikel
    Flight cancellations pile up on busy Memorial Day weekend

    Any of you stuck at the airport?

    “…More than any time in our history, the various factors currently impacting our operation — weather and air traffic control, vendor staffing, increased COVID case rates contributing to higher-than-planned unscheduled absences in some work groups — are resulting in an operation that isn’t consistently up to the standards Delta has set for the industry in recent years,” Delta’s Chief Customer Experience Officer Allison Ausband said in a post….”

    There’s more of course, but if you think you have already read this article….same feeling here.
    This has been the line out of the airlines since 2020:

    “…Airlines and tourist destinations are anticipating huge crowds this summer as travel restrictions ease and pandemic fatigue overcomes lingering fear of contracting COVID-19 during travel.

    Many forecasters believe the number of travelers will match or even surpass pre-pandemic levels. However, airlines have thousands fewer employees than they did in 2019, and that has, at times, contributed to widespread flight cancellations….”

    Rinse and repeat on July 4, Labor Day, etc.
    A little musical interlude for the airline execs worried about constantly keeping their stock price floating:
    Lenny Kravitz – It Ain’t Over ‘Til It’s Over

    1. MarkT

      Here in NZ it is still mandatory to wear a mask at shops/stores. My essential employer now wants essential employees to be in the office 40% of the time.

  39. fresno dan
    Uvalde Police chief: We extend our most sincere gratitude for the enormous outpour of support from all Law Enforcement Agencies, our community members and the nation. I want to thank all the personnel of my department for their dedicated and tireless efforts to continue to provide service to our community during this difficult time. Our personnel have displayed the utmost commitment to our community during this difficult time as we all are suffering as members of the community, that is the family of Uvalde.

    It is important for our community to know that our Officers responded within minutes alongside Uvalde CISD Officers. Responding UPD Officers sustained gun-shot wounds from the suspect. Our entire department is thankful that the officers did not sustain any life threatening injuries
    I have read that the initial gunshot wounds were grazing wounds. The police may have responded (i.e., in arrived at the scene), but the response was in fact totally inadequate. I think what we are seeing is a guy (police chief) so indoctrinated in police mythology, that he simply cannot understand why his words are so offensive. I think this press release documents why such, foolish, foolish decisions were made at the school.

    1. MarkT

      I live in New Zealand. Such a situation would not be possible here without an availability of guns.

    2. flora

      The more I look at the police response, the more things don’t add up. I’ll leave it there.

      1. The Rev Kev

        Now, now, now. Joe Biden was just there to personally meet the non-responders from that day. No – wait! Wait! That should be responders. Responders! Sorry. My mistake.

      2. ambrit

        Yes. I find it curious about how quickly not one, but two SWAT teams showed up. Then, the ‘team’ that killed the gunman went in supposedly without much equipment. A difference in attitude is apparent between the local police and the ‘outsiders.’
        I too like to ascribe to pure incompetence what many will be characterizing as fell conspiracies.
        The cynic in me says to pay special attention to how the story is ‘spun’ in the next week. I can see the circumstances of this being ‘spun’ as the results of the deficiencies of an inept local police force. The next step will to be the increased Federalization of police forces at all levels in America. This will necessitate larger budgets for policing in general. Under the “pay go” schema, something elsewhere in the budgets will have to be curtailed. Watch social services budgets get slashed.

  40. Marva

    “Everybody’s got to stand up and agree that this should not be happening in our country and that we should have the courage to do something about it,” she told the congregants at the funeral.”

    Harris’ desperate floundering and grabbing dead children’s bodies to pull herself up by a few temporary points, make herself look relevant and push her agenda.

    The Demented – and Selective – Game of Instantly Blaming Political Opponents For Mass Shootings

    Almost as tasteless as Obama linking Uvalde massacre to George Floyd.

  41. RobertC


    As AUKUS fades into irrelevance It’s Game On in the Pacific Australia’s new government and the United States are both moving urgently to boost ties with Pacific Island countries as the scope of China’s ambition becomes clear.

    …This rapid elevation of the Pacific to the top of the Australian government’s priorities is due to China’s audacious Pacific Islands agenda. That agenda is to create a bloc of so-called “China-Pacific Island Countries.” China seeks to persuade governments to sign on through a series of meetings in eight of the Pacific countries in question and then a gathering of 10 Pacific nations with Chinese officials at the Pacific Islands Forum on May 30.

    …[China’s foreign minister] Wang travels through the Pacific armed with two documents – the “China-Pacific Islands Countries Common Development Vision” and the “China-Pacific Island Countries Five Year Plan on Common Development” – he seeks to have adopted at the May 30 joint meeting.

    …The U.S. and Australia – which [President of the Federated States of Micronesia David] Panuelo refers to as “benevolent hegemons” – are in a high stakes contest to blunt China’s fast-paced transformation of the Pacific Islands. Both nations are working in unison, taking care not to lecture to the Pacific, but instead offer alternatives that retain the core values, freedoms and features of Pacific nations.

    …The fruits of [Senator Penny] Wong’s diplomacy in Fiji and the quieter groundwork the U.S. has been laying over the past months, landed a big win on May 26 when the White House announced that Fiji was joining the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF). This is the alternative to China’s “Common Development” deal.

    1. RobertC


      Will Australia take this opportunity as China, Pacific islands unable to reach consensus on regional pact?

      May 30 (Reuters) – China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Monday urged the Pacific region not to be “too anxious” about his country’s aims after a meeting with his counterparts from 10 island nations deferred consideration of a sweeping trade and security communique.

      …A draft communique and five-year action plan sent by China to the invited nations ahead of the meeting showed China was seeking a sweeping regional trade and security agreement.

      …After the meeting, which included Samoa, Tonga, Kiribati, Papua New Guinea, Vanuatu, Solomon Islands, Niue and Vanuatu, Wang said further discussions were needed to shape more consensus.

  42. The Rev Kev

    Ruh, Roh! Nancy Pelosi’s husband got picked up for drunk driving and spent a coupla hours in the drunk tank. And it happened while Nancy herself was on the east coast. So what happens next?

    1) Forced to pay a large fine and loses his driver’s license for several months.

    2) Promises the Court that he will be a good boy and is told not to do it again.

    3) Police accidentally lose his tests from that night so no charges can be pressed.

    4) The whole thing drops down a memory hole after Nancy comes home.

    So many possibilities-

    1. SocalJimObjects

      Duh it’s not the husband, it’s the non English speaking gardener behind the wheel!!! He’s set for life after a couple of months in prison.

  43. The Rev Kev

    Wow. Here is something that has flown completely under the radar. So a few days ago Australia’s eSafety Commissioner Julie Inman Grant said at the WEF that we need a ‘recalibration” of a whole range of human rights, specifically targeting free speech & the right to data protection.’ We have an eSafety Commissioner? Is that Australia’s equivalent of America’s Disinformation Governance Board? Who the hell is she? Here is that clip- (50 secs)

    Some of the comments below are pretty savage and deservedly so, But her accent struck me so did a bit of digging. it seems that

    ‘Julie Inman Grant is Australia’s online censorship (‘eSafety’) Commissioner, a position she has held since 2017. The position is designed as a link in a collaboration between the big tech corporations and the government. The powers and reach of the position were drastically expanded in 2021, with several new laws against “online harm” and to “promote safer, more positive online experiences.”
    In 2020, the World Economic Forum designated her as one of the #Agile50, the world’s most influential leaders revolutionizing government.
    She is an external contributor to the Australian Strategic Policy Institute’

    Further down, it says this-

    ‘Grant’s career began in Washington DC, working in the US Congress before taking on a role at Microsoft. Grant worked for Microsoft for 17 years, serving as one of the company’s first and longest-standing government relations professionals, ultimately in the role of Global Director for Safety & Privacy Policy and Outreach. She then moved to Twitter, where she “set up and drove the company’s policy, safety and philanthropy”‘

    So Scotty from Marketing slipped through the back door a corporate player and DC insider to be eventually in charge of censorship here in OZ. Thanks, Scotty.

  44. Robin Kash

    This article is another in a long line of blah, blah, blah, about why gun violence is not reined in.
    Consider this: gun violence continues unabated because the ruling class is just fine with it. While attention is being drawn to “terrorism” abroad and “white terrorism” at home, gun violence is one of the ways the ruling class keeps us terrified.
    A chief political instrument in recent years is the SCOTUS. There the ones who decided people had the personal right to bear arms. Nevermind the militia part.
    The ruling class has paralyzied our Congress by owning it. Representatives and Senators respond to donors, not voters.
    The President is become a figurehead of whichever side of the Business Party is in favor by the ruling class. Actually, which side matters not at all to the ruling class. Both will keep us at war. Both will keep us under surveillance. Both will keep us poor enough that we are always in crippling debt. Both will keep us beholden to massive insurance companies for what passes as health care.
    The ruling class has raised its own “popular” gun constituency. About a third of Americans own guns.  That one-third includes the assassins who show up at schools, music festivals, supermarkets, churches, and other places where people gather to kill enough people to remind us that we’re not safe, and will not be safe, we will never be safe. Because guns. Guns are sacred.
    Screw around as much as you like with searching our home’s, or freedom of speech, or mocking freedom of the press, or any thought of getting a speedy trial, and so on. You can do anything, but don’t step on my blue suede shoes, or limit in any significant way the purchase and ownership of guns. There must be a climate in which to grow blind assassins.
    These blind assassins are just part of the reign of terror the ruling class visits upon us all. The assassins are as expendable as their victims.
    The French had a revolution to deal with their ruling class problem. But here in the States we just say, Pass the cake.

    1. Stick'em

      RK ~ Well said. Agreed. As a general strategy, the aristocracy supports things which divide Americans to keep us from having the solidarity necessary to challenge our rulers. Doesn’t matter if we have guns; what matters is we point them at each other rather than at Wall Street. Divide and conquer is old as dirt.

      Then, for maximum irony and sarcasm, the aristocracy picked Good Ole Joe, the current used-car-salesman-in-chief, to promote “Uniting the Country” as his big campaign promise. Because the PR spin is typically the opposite of the reality.

      United? Asking the Blue team to join the same reality bubble the Red team lives in is akin to asking your crazy X-wife to remarry you because now you’ve got the good meth instead of the crappy PseudoFed stuff you made in the bathtub at your last wedding.

      BTW, like much of the history we are taught, “Let them eat cake” is prolly fake. I first noticed this trend a couple years ago on FakeBook, where the vast majority of quotes on memes turn out to be apocryphal when we bother to dig a little:

    1. The Rev Kev

      That sign says that ‘We Stand With Ukraine.’ Considering the fact that they are talking about Ukrainian strippers, I would imagine that something would be standing.

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