Links 5/3/2022

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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.

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Title: Strange Mars rock type points to extremely violent volcanic eruptions (Kevin W)

Can pee help feed the world? France24 (resilc)

Record-breaking camera keeps everything between 3 cm and 1.7 km in focus New Atlas (David L)

A Portable Wind Turbine “About the Size of a 1-Liter Water Bottle” Core77 (David L)

Darwin Was Wrong: Your Facial Expressions Do Not Reveal Your Emotions Scientific American (David L)

How to Stop Speeding Drivers? Scare Them. New York Times (resilc)

The Vandal LA Review of Books (Anthony L)

The musical note that can trigger cold sweats and sightings of the dead The Spectator (Anthony L)


‘We’ve not seen the WORST of Covid’ warns Microsoft billionaire Bill Gates Daily Mail (resilc)


Antigenic evolution of SARS-CoV-2 in immunocompromised hosts MedRxIv (guurst). Preprint.

Two new Omicron variants detected in the U.S. could spark another COVID wave. Research shows these people will fare best Fortune (David L)


Shanghai lockdown: The hard life of a homeless deliveryman BBC (resilc)

Coronavirus: Shanghai reports 58 new cases in unguarded, low-risk zones in setback for city’s ‘societal zero-Covid’ push South China Morning Post

Beijing to conduct three more rounds of testing in three days to stamp out latest flare-up Global Times

Coronavirus in China: six in firing line after elderly Shanghai patient mistaken for dead triggers new wave of lockdown horror South China Morning Post (resilc)


Climate change means 1 in 25 homes could become uninsurable by 2030, report warns ABC Australia (Kevin W)

Horn of Africa ravaged by worst drought in four decades Financial Times

Climate Emergency: Extreme Heat devastates Male Honeybees and threatens Fertilization of Crops Juan Cole (resilc)

Renewable electricity powered California just shy of 100% for the first time in history USA Today (Kevin W)

Glass dismissed: wine goes green with paper bottle drive Guardian (furzy)

Strong Winds Keep Fueling New Mexico Wildfire New York Times (David L)


Chinese state media report on ‘Ma’ detention sparks Alibaba sell-off Financial Times

Good US-China Strategic Competition Project Syndicate (David L)


On Eid, Mamata Banerjee slams BJP, says ‘policy of divide and rule not good’ Hindustan Times (J-LS)

PM Narendra Modi needs to do plain speaking in Europe FirstPost (J-LS)

Old Blighty

How London became the dirty money capital of the world | FT Film YouTube (resilc)

Would a Sinn Féin victory open the door to a united Ireland? Financial Times (furzy)

New Not-So-Cold War

Our Interview with Jacques Baud The Postil (guurst). Today’s must read.

America’s ideological blinkers and the Ukraine war Gilbert Doctorow. Important. His next most recent is interesting, if more parochial: FX and grocery shopping in St. Petersburg: “The Eagle Has Landed”: A voyage to St Petersburg via the far side of the moon.

Special Military Operation (Live) YouTube (Chuck L). This is overwhelmingly Andrei Martyanov, who Asia Times calls “arguably the foremost military analyst in the Russian sphere” and has several books to back that claim. Andrei is blunt and dramatic, which makes one wonder if he is being hyperbolic, although he often provides detail to back up his assessments. You can listen to it at 1.25x speed. This is long with a lot of military and equipment geekery. One section worth considering starts at 31:00 where Gonzalo Lira sets forth a recap of the Russian prosecution of the war, based significantly on Scott Ritter’s take. Andrei disagrees pretty forcefully with that and conventional wisdom on the opening phase and Russia’s aims as of then.

* * *

Germany and France Must Drive Effort for Credible Deterrent Against Russia Der Spiegel (resilc)

Britain’s Napoleonic Posturing will be Exposed by Battlefield Reality CounterPunch (resilc)

Can Western Tanks, Artillery, And Missiles Save Ukraine? Don’t Count On It. 1945 (guurst). From last week, still germane.

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s interview with Mediaset, Italian television network, Moscow, May 1, 2022 (it is a Hot one!) The Saker (Kevin W). Very pointed for Lavrov.

* * *

Ukraine’s Black Sea port city of Odesa hit by Russian rocket strike – as it happened Guardian (furzy)

Boris Johnson to hail Ukraine’s ‘finest hour’ in address to Kyiv parliament Guardian (Kevin W)

Germany warns EU to expect economic cost from Russian oil embargo Financial Times. Lead story. Gee, ya think?

* * *

The Press Fumbles Again on Ukraine American Conservative. Resilc: “Judith Miller with real nukes.”

Ukraine war boosts Belarusian opposition against Alexander Lukashenko Washington Post (furzy)


Eight months on, Taliban’s rule is far from stable Asia Times (Kevin W)

Leaked video shows US choppers airlifting ISIS fighters in Iraq: Report The Cradle

Imperial Collapse Watch

Why America is losing the ‘war by other means’ despite Big Tech, Hollywood and soft power Firstpost (J-LS)

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

Mental health and prayer apps have ‘worst’ privacy – survey RT (Kevin W)


Ex-NYPD Officer Thomas Webster Convicted of Assault in Jan. 6 Case New York Times (furzy)


Will Trump Face a Legal Reckoning in Georgia? New York Times (furzy)

GOP Clown Car

In Republican Primaries, China is the Enemy Washington Monthly

Supremes. A court observer is tearing his hair over how this story is being reported. The huge scandal is that the draft opinion has been leaked. This is unprecedented and monstrously damaging to trust and proper deliberation (yes, per below, there have been past leaks, but not of actual documents). However, the existence of this document does not mean a decision has been made. This could be and even likely, Alito lobbying his fellow justices. But Team Dem has much to gain by presenting it this way.

Draft ruling shows Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade: report The Hill

Supreme Court draft opinion that would overturn Roe v. Wade published by Politico Politico (David L)

Court has voted to overturn Roe, according to draft opinion published by Politico ScotusBlog. Note third para, consistent with our contact’s reaction:

Initial votes on the outcome of a case can change — and the wording of opinions frequently does — as the justices deliberate and circulate draft opinions. The court is expected to release its decision in Dobbs in the next two months.

Protesters Rush to Supreme Court After Abortion Ruling Report Bloomberg. Lead story as of this hour.

Newsom, lawmakers want California Constitution to explicitly protect abortion rights Los Angeles Times (furzy)

St. Olaf ousts faculty director of institute dedicated to bringing controversial speakers to campus — because speakers caused controversy The Fire (Mark A)

Citi’s London Trading Desk Behind Rare European ‘Flash Crash’ Bloomberg (David L)

Biden Administration Begins $3 Billion Plan for Electric Car Batteries New York Times

No One is Telling You the Truth About the Car Shortage, So I Have to YouTube. Resilc: “40% of cars metal comes from Russian companies………”

Class Warfare

The Chilling Fate of the Nurse Who Accidentally Killed a Patient Slate (resilc)

The Means-Test Con The Lever (furzy)

The Pandemic Mental Health Crisis Causing Teachers to Quit New Republic (resilc)

Antidote du jour (Wayne W)

And a bonus (furzy):

See yesterday’s Antidote du Jour and Links here.

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    1. Mikel

      Oh, so that’s the problem. Scientists aren’t full-time and getting paid.

      CDC and WHO are part-time jobs?

      Why am I trying to make sense of what Bill Gates is saying?

      What if the problem is well-paid billionaires being part-time health officials?

  1. YuShan

    “A Portable Wind Turbine “About the Size of a 1-Liter Water Bottle”

    With that amount of bulk and 1.3kg weight, no sensible backpacker is going to carry that around. A 10,000mAh powerbank weighs less than 200 grams. You can scale up if you need more power. Remember you have to hit town anyway about once a week or so to top up your food supply.

    1. PlutoniumKun

      Yes, I was thinking that too, power packs are so cheap and light now, there is no real justification for something like that for a regular backpacker or bikepacker. The only use I can think of is for long term camps, maybe for photographers or hunters intending to stay for a week or more somewhere very wild.

    2. Wukchumni

      I’d rather bring 3 pounds of canned plonk into the back of beyond than that there wind turbine

      My long time backpacking partner has a small solar charger about the size of a cell phone that hangs on the back of his backpack catching rays and provides enough power to charge up his phone, it weighs maybe 8 ounces.

      1. flora

        A back country rescue beacon is a better use of limited carry space than a wind turbine, imo. Speaking of back country rescue: this is a hell’a true rescue story from Rogan’s podcast talking with Remi Warren, utube, ~15 minutes. (My 2 cents – ” There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.” – Hamlet ) :

      2. YuShan

        I also use a small solar panel (200 gram) combined with a 10,000mAh powerbank (200 gram) to charge camera, headlight, phone (SIM-less, for offline navigation, field guides, etc). I have hiked the Pacific Crest Trail (2650 miles) and in the entire 5 months that it took me to hike it I have never charged in town. Of course this is not so difficult in the sunny American West.

        Do I recommend bringing a small solar panel? Well, I personally love it because I like the off-the-grid esthetics of it. But since you have to top up your food supplies in town anyway, most people just bring a powerbank and charge it in town.

    3. Maritimer

      When I experience Nature I always want my Phone, Tablet, GPS, USB light, camera and speakers with me at all times. This is also a marvelous improvement for those intrepid, brave Everest mountain climbers who can now call home, take a pic, do a selfie when they achieved Natural Nirvana. Progress marches on and on.

      1. Angie Neer

        It drives me up a tree when I meet someone on the trail with music blaring from a phone. If they really to be insulated from the sounds or quiet of nature, couldn’t they at least do it with earbuds?

      2. Anthony G Stegman

        These intrepid mountain climbers also have creme brulee delivered to their tents each evening. The sherpas are only too happy to oblige.

      3. Lambert Strether

        > brave Everest mountain climbers

        Into Thin Air is one of the most gripping, and depressing, books I’ve ever read.

        The whole Everest “adventure” business should be shut down and the mountains left to themselves.

        1. CanCyn

          Agreed. I don’t remember in great detail all of the books I read but that one stayed with me. I recall while reading it thinking that it couldn’t all be true, that surely people wouldn’t risk their lives so stupidly for this supposed badge of honour. The people who had never even tried on some of their equipment seemed like something you couldn’t put in a novel as it would be too unbelievable. Climbing Everest is indeed a very dirty business in all aspects of the word.

    1. Oh

      TPTB don’t worry about polls. They know they can run negative ads and win the election. The uniparty will win no matter what. The people will get (family blogged) yet once more.

  2. Stick'em

    “During a public, televised debate on a bill, Nebraska Sen. Bruce Bostelman claims schools are placing litter boxes in school bathrooms to accommodate children who self-identify as cats.”

    Can we pass a bill that says any and every politician allowed to vote on a school funding bill has to spend at least one 8-hour day in a real classroom so he/she can distinguish between it and a petstore?

    1. hunkerdown

      It would be better to not play the game of passion politics at all, even from the meta level, and in its place work out a means of direct democracy. Thus is eliminated 90% of the drama of the political sphere caused by the Western ideology of war fetishism.

  3. Samuel Conner

    If I could save pee in bottle, …
    There’s not enough NPK to grow the foods you need to eat …

    (Wuk — can you do something with this?)

    Peering around the internet, there are assertions that urine combined with wood ash makes an excellent DIY substitute for exogenous fertilizers. For example,

    Presumably one could get a similar result from chipping or grinding the wood and composting it with the urine as nitrogen source, which would have the added benefit of adding humus to the soil, improving its water retention.


    I wonder if there are municipal ordinances that restrict what one is allowed to do with one’s endogenous liquid nitrogen fertilizer.

    One also worries about, in US at least, the widespread incidence of polypharmacy. Many of these agents are excreted in urine and will end up wherever the urine goes.

    It would be ironic if it’s the high price of natural gas that ends up motivating a concerted effort to improve public health for the sake of mitigating the precarity of the food supply.

    1. Louis Fyne

      I am assuming the problem is scale. All that pee would have to be trucked to a field, or distilled-concentrated, then trucked to a field.

      that sounds expensive, especially with diesel over $5.

      the maths are simple, someone should figure out how much energy it take to more 1L of pee from Omaha to a field. And how many liters of pee an acre of wheat need (probably a very big number)

        1. JohnM_inMN

          How about we just avoid the chemical fertilizer commodity crops. I eat well w/o wheat, barley, soy, etc…in my diet. Community gardens growing real food organically. Local food. Local control. I know this can’t scale, and large swaths of land aren’t suited for growing food but hey, a guy can dream.

          1. smashsc

            Long ago I saved this link in my bookmarks: New England Can Feed Itself (well, 70% of itself) as an example what localization could allegedly accomplish. I’ve not seen any followup whether any initiatives have started to close the 10%->70% gap…

            1. Wukchumni

              A couple of turns of century ago* there might not have been more than a few hundred almond trees in the CVBB-as opposed to a few hundred million, as most of the action was predicated upon the growing of wheat without needing irrigation as the winter rains provided, ‘dry farming’.

              I keep reading about wheat sources being wiped out all over the world, and it’d be easy peasy to grow wheat again in the Central Valley, as the purple mountain majesties above the fruited plain melt out much quicker due to climate change.

              The thing is though, that Cali grows fun foods instead now, not all that much which is vital and a lot more profitable than wheat which can be grown all over the place.

              Driving home yesterday was a bit of a shock in that the smattering of snow on high in the Sierra was of no consequence, in early May-ye gads!

              * Book tip: The Octopus by Frank Norris

              1. lance ringquist

                duh according to nafta billy clinton, raise cash crops, then you can buy food on the global markets, duh, why not raise it yourself and save the environment from burning the fossil fuel to ship it, and also cut out the wall street middleman parasite.

                what nafta billy clinton did to haiti was a crime against humanity. he almost got japan to gut their rice growing and buy from thailand also.

                of course a bad drought came that year and Thailand could no longer feed asia, lucky japan did not listent nafta billy.

                malawi was another who would not listen to nafta billy and his crank cash crop free trade nonsense.


                Ending Famine, Simply by Ignoring the Experts

                Evelyn Hockstein for The New York Times
                The secret of Malawi’s success: heavy subsidies for fertilizer,
                farmers say. The World Bank had pressed for their elimination. By
                CELIA W. DUGGER
                Published: December 2, 2007


                don’t ever let anyone try to pull the wool over your eyes, and claim that free trade is humanitarian, they are simply “FRAUDS”.

                the destructiveness of free trade, it breeds cash crops, lincoln understood this well; it reinforces what we’ve all discussed: The post-NAFTA crapifcaiton of clothing; “free trade is simply the absence of democratic control, it allows corporation to roam the globe at will, seeking the cheapest most exploited labor, lack of environmental enforced regulations, all in a tax free environment.”

                Many of us have been saying for a long time that unchecked, liberalised global trade is a disaster waiting to happen. No one listened. Now it’s happened.”

                “Here we offer some extracts from a new survey examining the relationship between trade and food security, poverty and the environment. “Trade and Hunger” distills the findings from 27 impact assessments on the effects of trade liberalisation from 39 countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe. The consistent conclusion from these studies is that so-called “free trade” as promoted by the World Trade Organisation benefits only the rich, while making the poor more vulnerable to food insecurity.”

                so what california is doing, is what the south did pre civil war under free trade, cotton was a cash crop that was very self destructive to humanity and the environment.

    2. PlutoniumKun

      In medieval times pee was a valuable commodity, mostly for tanning leather. In pre-Edo Japan it was collected separately as a fertilizer from night soil (I think for transportation reasons), but it had lower value. The landlords of tenements would have collection tanks and it was a condition of rent for the tenants that their pee and poo belonged to the landlord.

      Pee does have one very valuable property for many home gardeners. It has a distinct odor that foxes recognise and they will accept the garden as ‘owned’. My sister had a problem with urban foxes in England damaging her veg and flower beds (digging for worms probably). It was solved by having her three kids go pee in each corner of the garden.

        1. ambrit

          See if you can get some Big Cat scat. Nothing will cross that line. If you meet something that does, run!

          1. Wukchumni

            Went to Cat Haven (on Hwy 180 en route to Kings Canyon) on my birthday last year and inquired in regards to mountain lion scat from the trio there, and lest the docent think i’m kind of a freak-I explained the havoc Bambi et al were on my orchard in Sept-October when nothing else around these parts is green, everything having died back with it’s roots on.

            This is obviously a good avenue for just-in-time cougar doodoo, and now that i’ve planted the kernel, I plan to hit them up come the fall.

              1. Wukchumni

                Have around 60 mostly different fruit trees, the first stone fruit will be one of the early cherries, that is if I beat the winged ones to it.

                Lapins cherry tree is loaded with bounty, and the others in lesser amounts. The best tasting cherry is a Stella, which had been stingy in the past, but has about 100 on the tree this year.

      1. Lexx

        Urea pushes moisture into fiber by helping to breakdown the outer cuticle allowing water and dye particles into the dye sites, so it was also used in the dyeing process of wool…. at least it was in medieval Europe. Japan too? I think silk contains some kind of gummy outer surface that urea has the same dissolving effect on.

        Urea acts as a humectant on human skin when applied, to say, cracking heels. It penetrates through the callouses. An OTC example would be a product like Kerasal.

        Interesting sidenote… that ingredient – hyaluronic acid – that’s become so popular in moisturizers is based on the biofermentation of a bacteria. The petroleum base of Kerasal can be too heavy and sticky for day use and Cera Ve too light, in that it only draws moisture to the surface of skin, so I combine them (20/80) with a few added drops of essential oil. It may be the best solution I’ve come up with yet for an old white woman to counter a state this dry. YMMV.

      2. David

        Pee is also used by many old fashioned current gardeners to kick start their compost bins

    3. The Rev Kev

      How do you filter that pee, which I will assume is mixed with water. At water treatment plants I understand that trace amounts of birth control and other medications are still found in that water. Wouldn’t the same be true of that pee so that all those chemicals would work their way into the food chain? What would the effect be on people constantly ingesting this as part of their diet? Engineer Fabien Esculier’s grandmother never had to take this into account. Here is an older article talking about birth control hormones and drinking water from Scientific American-

      1. Amfortas the hippie

        i worry about drugs in our pee…esp wifes chemo drugs
        so the current co.posting toilet diverts pee into the old gully(disconne ted from cou tymade runoff system for 40 yeRs)
        there, it feeds cattails, a cypress*,squirrel planted pecans*, and other eetland stuff.
        frogs galore…and so far no appreciable diffetence in mosquito population.
        presence of frogs indi ates that the chemo drugs in wifes pee arent as bad as i thought…no 8 legged 3 eyed flying vampire frogs as yet.

        *_ these trees grow taproots down to wTertable and will eventually make a seep/spring in that spot

        my keyboard died on laptop
        and fonechaos abounds
        (on a loaner rn)
        also crazybusy w wifes health and the farm
        feels like i e been on a dead run for weeks
        (wifes on the mend)
        hence my silence of late.
        i converse with yall all the time in my head,tho.

          1. Revenant

            Hail, to Amfortas in his e e cummings phase, to his failing devices and to his recovering wife!

            1. The Rev Kev

              Good to hear from you Amf and that is good news about your wife. Sucks to hear about your laptop though.

        1. Pat

          Still sending good thoughts…and not to the frogs.

          Glad things are looking better on the health front, hope things clear up on the tech front.

        2. BillS

          Ciao Amfortas! Glad to hear that your wife is on the mend. I’ve been missing your feedstore reports. ;-)

    4. Alyosha

      I can’t speak to ash and pee, but it’s difficult to directly compost wood (saw dust, wood chips, etc.) because they become a nitrogen sink. Long term it’s fine but in the short term the wood will reduce soil nitrogen levels. However, if you pee on the saw dust/wood chips it buffers the urine and the nitrogen sink aspects of the raw wood.

      I’ve switched the cat litter to the pine pellets and saw dust / handplane shavings from my shop. I don’t stockpile it all winter but when the compost is available it goes into the rough bin (I run three stage composting). If I have a landscaping project for the yard I will stockpile it all winter. Ornamental beds are built with mini-hugulkulture principles and I’ll dump the used wood litter down at the bottom of the new bed.

    5. Martin Oline

      . . . .
      The first thing that I’d like to do
      Is to save every day ’til eternity passes away
      Just to spend them with you
      – Jim Croce

    6. ghiggler

      As I have said in another comment, over geological time PK will run into the sea for as long as water flows downhill. These will become concentrated in evaporative basins in corresponding geologic eras, be uplifted in mountain-building eras, and weathered into the soil and finally leached into the sea again.

      Life can to some extent reverse the flow. Salmon gather NPK in the oceans, swim upstream where bears eat them and poop the NPK into the forests, making them more productive. Seagulls can move NPK inland. Historically, Japanese citizens have ingested NPK from seafood and seaweed and their “nightsoil” moved to farmer’s fields has built NPK reserves in the soil.

      But in general, we do not and on a world-wide basis cannot poop in the fields. Potassium is the essential electrolyte in every cell. Obviously, it builds up in trees, and extracting it from ash tree in a pot (potash) will make an agricultural fertilizer. But potassium does not teleport back into trees for reuse. Once it gets into the grains, fruits and leaves that we eat in the end, and via the end, the NPK is flushed into the sea. Agriculture speeds up the movement of PK to the sea. By mining PK, we essentially speed up the mountain weathering that replenishes them in cropland. This is sustainable for several hundred years, good enough for now. Beyond that time, we will have to more directly move PK from sea to field.

      In any case, moving NPK from our toilets more directly to our fields is problematic. Presuming that we are never dealing with raw sewage and the concomitant disease issues, there are still issues with volumes, as Louis Fyne points out, and with contaminants – primarily heavy metals and, as Samuel Conner and The Rev Kev point out, pharmaceuticals.

      Peeing in my garden should be safe enough, as long as there’s no drug treatment or contraceptive use going on in the household, and I would trust well composted poo, but that would still do nothing to replenish the South African soil which has grown my grapes.

      So, I’m sorry, France24, JohnM_inMN, Wukchumni and others, while very local recycling of personal fertilizer works, it is not a general solution on larger scales.

    7. BlakeFelix

      Ya, I think that the use a bucket as a toilet might actually work for this, although person waste is icky enough that I would probably try to steer it towards plants I wasn’t planning on eating under most circumstances. You put some sawdust at the bottom of a bucket with a seat lid preferably, then seal it up when you aren’t using it. When it’s full you put a real lid on it and leave it to compost for a long time, and then it’s compost. I haven’t tried it, but I have heard that it works surprisingly well. If you want extra disgusting resilience if people are eating a lot of fiber their solid waste is a decent food for pigs, hence happy as a pig in $#!]. Then the pigs can be raised on straw and that straw makes great compost and running things through a pig kills most pathogens. I think there are places in India where the toilets go directly to pig pens traditionally.

  4. Jack

    Re “The Chilling Fate…” Thank you for posting. I want to say again that university hospitals are far less safe than community hospitals, in my experience. I think that this is because their primary goal is the education of the medical students, not the safe, expeditious, effective, humane care of the sick.

    1. ambrit

      Don’t forget that the University Hospitals do a brisk trade in drug trials. We encountered the phenominon of a certain University Hospital only offering Phyl one kind of medical treatment for her cancer, even though other proposed treatments were on offer elsewhere. The upshot being, you have to shop around various University Hospitals to find the one running trials on the treatment that you prefer. In this case, the doctors are not disinterested specialists. They are fully captured workers for the latest Big Pharma grantor.

  5. Louis Fyne

    modern tanks, artillery, etc are worthless when given to conscripts with weeks of training (the current sitution).

    the best UA units are dead, buried in a basement in Mariupol or being rained on by artillery in Donbass.

    More weapons to a conscript army only adds to the body count for no change in the final political outcome

    1. sinbad66

      And as you have frequently pointed out, where are they getting the mogas, diesel and aviation fuel for all of this stuff they are shipping in?

    2. Beyond the rubicoN

      Do you think it possible that all the talk about sending supplies into UA is just a cover for pre-positioning weapons and material for a Nato counter offensive? Rather then the current narrative of sending weapons to UA fighters.

      1. Louis Fyne

        from the news/official social media, looks like everything bound for Ukraine is being sent via airplane. In the grand scheme of things, that is not a lot of stuff.

        As I recall, the US already has ammo dumps in Germany for use in the Middle East/Europe. I’d bet that pre-2022 Pentagon estimates of the ammo-supplies-equipment needed to fight the Russians were too low.

        To fight the Russians, one would need multiple convoys of cargo ships full of supplies and equipment. Particularly as the UK-continental European armies are essentially in a useless state of readiness. (the same person who was in charge of letting the Germany Army rot is the president of the EU)

        If we see news of ships being loaded and heading for Rotterdam, that will be bad news.

        As if the west were insane enough to fight Russia, the US will have to do ALL of the heavy lifting as European military capabilities are essentially worthless except as cannon fodder.

    3. Jacob Hatch

      Perhaps going slow for Russia has two optimums, it reduces Russian deaths, and increases the burn on the armories of the EU and USA at a time when they can’t easily make replacements (with parts from China). To misquote a ‘brave’ congress critter from California, “better to burn them up in Ukraine where internal lines favour us, than to face them when we are forced to turn and extirpate France and Germany’s ability to wage war.”

  6. William Beyer

    As if a proxy war in Ukraine and a million dead of Covid were not enough, Politico, a CIA front, leaks a preliminary Supremes decision – all to distract us from the appointment of a 33-year-old Truth Nazi in the Department of Homeland Security who will decide what news we are allowed to see and hear. Let’s keep our eye on the ball, people.

    1. Safety First

      Does anyone actually have an idea what the Disinformation Governance Board is actually supposed to do?!

      The most that I have been able to find is a quote from the DHS spokesman: “To provide this protection [from disinformation], the Board will coordinate the Department’s internal activities related to disinformation that poses a threat to homeland security.” There is also reference to the Global Engagement Center, created back in 2016, but did not actually issue its first report until 2020 and, based on the press release section of its website, still has no idea what it’s actually supposed to be doing.

      So will the DGB basically be yet another boondoggle like the GEC, occasionally producing pithy reports but without any systematic approach or real power and responsibilities? A place to dump your friendly consultants until the next gig comes along? Does the law actually give them any power to do anything other than to issue press releases? Or is the assumption that the DGB will prepare some sort of blacklists, or narratives, or whatever else, and these will then be utilised by other federal agencies and mainstream media to guide their own actions?

      I mean, at least with Voice of America and the like it’s pretty straightforward – we pay you money, you publish and air certain narratives, the end. Here, I am almost prepared to believe that this is West Wing Brain deciding that they need to do “something”, and a few professional grifters leeching on.

      1. William Beyer

        Unverified reports have Nina Jankowicz cutting her teeth in Kiev, from 2017 to 2020, censoring journalists who were insufficiently supportive of the accepted narrative. Perhaps more will come out over time, or perhaps we’ll never know.

        1. Lambert Strether

          > Nina Jankowicz

          I’m super not a member of Team Tucker Carlson, but his demolition of Nina Jankowicz was very entertaining and on point. Makes me wonder if putting an obvious buffoon in charge was a way of sabotaging the effort. I mean, why have an intermediary when the spooks can just deal with the platforms directly?

      2. nippersdad

        It sounds like they are going to be coordinating the narrative for those MSM and social media outlets that they will be outsourcing their censorship to. They are just creating a bureaucracy to better achieve what they have already been doing on an ad hoc basis for years now.

      3. lyman alpha blob

        They discuss it on the Useful Idiots show from Monday with clips from a CNN interview starting at about the 23:00 mark –

        Not surprisingly, they are extremely vague about the intentions for this project.

        My hope is that it will be used to catapult the official DC propaganda which will then be laughed out of the room. But it sure seems like this could eventually lead to some serious censorship given that they are being very forthright about the plans.

      4. Mesquite

        Kinda late, but since I don’t see an accurate take elsewhere. In this time of QAnon etc I occasionally read disinfo specialists on twitter. One of them was informed and had a twitter thread. The Disinformation Governance Board is not a new construct, it was active in DHS under Trump, though I’m not sure it started there. It’s purpose is to inform people who are the recipients of/ affected by disinfo (misinformation distributed with malicious intent). It probably would inform journalists who are using such info, but also ordinary people/ school boards who are harassed because of it, and how to help them recover their lives.

        I tend to be distrustful of anyone who has spent time in Ukraine recently, but the job description is an appropriate thing for the government to do. Biden administration has been beyond pathetic rolling it out. But the most viral/ popular/ hottest takes I’ve seen are from malicious actors who actively harass people as their way of life. Retweeted by Elon of course. Many others talk about it, but nobody else seems to know it has been around for a while so I don’t trust their takes. But who can resist calling it Ministry of Truth when its real purpose is not explained?

        1. Pat

          The job description may be appropriate, and I am not sure about that, but hiring Jankowicz is not. And since we once again have top administration officials actively lying to the public, who see nothing wrong in doing so, disinformation is obviously not their issue.
          IOW unless Nina comes out and points out the problems with believing Fauci, Blinken, herself…

    2. Questa Nota

      Truth Nazi is just one contender in the current Panic Sweepstakes.
      Add in all those Special Counsel Durham indictments.
      And Politico leak.
      And the 2000 Mules movie.
      And the Title 42 border issues.
      And gas prices.
      And inflation everywhere.
      And reports of food shortages.

      And, and, and….. now we all live in interesting times.

      No shortage of foily entertainment, although exhausting to try to survive through all that. :/

  7. DJG, Reality Czar

    Esteemed commenter Judith posted this article in the comments to yesterday’s links:

    I will be less charitable than Judith: Just what is this harpy doing in Brazil in the runup to a presidential election in which the frontrunner was framed with help by the U.S. Department of Injustice?

    Note / quotes:
    “The Brazilian Minister of Mines and Energy, Almirante Bento, an advocate of the privatization of Petrobrás (oil) and Eletrobrás (electricity), has already made clear the existence of an “orientation” by the White House for Brazil to radically increase its oil exports, especially to the European countries that are being pressured by the United States to reduce imports from Russia.”

    [And fun with the local neoliberals]
    “On her Brazil visit, Nuland posted photos on social media of her meeting with “young entrepreneurs”. However, some Brazilians observed that none of the young people in the photos are known for working on the themes referred to by Nuland. There was also no mention of whether they are part of any university, NGO or organized group.”

    This bears watching. The U.S. feels compelled to meddle in Brazil. It seems to come from fear of the oligarchs being reined in and, of course, greed for all of those natural resources to exploit.

    1. super extra

      She stopped by Colombia as well and met with all the presidential candidates except the Leftists and warned of ‘risks by external actors’ lol ya think??! I’m sure she means the pretext of Monroe Doctrine intervention in response to ‘Russian meddling’ but come on.

    2. Alyosha

      Ugh, nothing good ever comes from Nuland’s involvement. Thanks for the tip.

    3. pjay

      I have an “Elliott Abrams List” of public officials who would be banished from government and/or imprisoned in a just world. Instead, these officials keep rising from the dead and reappear whenever and wherever major mischief is about to occur. Nuland is near the top of that list. Presidents come and go, but the Victoria Nulands live on. When the Republicans win in 2024 I fully expect to see Abrams back doing his thing as well, while Nuland will “retire” to a comfortable think-tank until the next Dem administration.

  8. TJHbuff

    So 50-80% of infections get long covid, only 1/3 of the country is boosted, and no other measures are being taken. Do we get to say this is an existential problem yet?

    I wonder what the disease rate is in the Ukraine war?

    1. Yves Smith Post author

      Boosters do little to nothing to prevent infections. They prevent hospitalizations. And Omicron and BAs that ought to be named variants but aren’t largely escape the vaccines. The latest from IM Doc, and his reports for the last two months have been like this save everyone in his hospital being sick:

      We now have an entire urgent care staff – including 2 MDs – who are all COVID positive. I am not just swamped – I am torpedoed.

      Cases in my practice last week were up again – 88 in total. Not a single unvaxxed patient, 48 double vaxxed, 22 with one booster, and 18 with 2 booster. No vaxxed, No J&J, and no partial vaxxed.

      Thankfully, no admissions. Just like last year, long phase of very mild illness.

      One theory I have heard and made me think – is maybe all the unvaxxed vulnerable have died and all the unvaxxed we have left are young and healthy. I do not think so – still seeing lots of unvaxxed with risk factors in the office every day.

      I have now gone two months without seeing a single unvaxxed patient. In an attempt to see if somehow this was just me, I contacted family practice docs in each of our surrounding counties with much lower VAX rates – on the order of 30-40%. Both had the same story – the absolute number of cases was WAY higher than this time last year……but in one county he had seen only 1 unvaxxed patient since MAR 1, the other county doc had seen only 7.

      Something is very very wrong. Again, cases are way higher than last year and virtually all are among the VAXXED. I learned this week that in the official reporting, all of the double vaxxed only patients are being sent in as UNVAXXED – so it appears our unvaxxed rate is about 50%. But as I have explained above, that is completely misleading. The truly UNVAXXED are not the problem here. Furthermore, the numbers being reported are doing good to being 1/6 of the total. Almost all are on home or rapid tests. But unfortunately, as of this weekend, on the Drudge Report running 7 day counter – we are now seeing higher official numbers than last year. You just have to multiply by 6 on this years’s number to get close to accurate – so we are in a whole new world.

      Now, I have attached an article from the paper over this weekend [contains anecdotes of many getting Covid and isolating]. Please note – this is in stark contrast to last year. I tracked down the first article of the year last year of an “unexpected surge” – which was published the week after JULY 4 – so we are two months ahead. The cases were MUCH lower last year – and we were still in the “vaccines have solved everything” mode.

      All I can say is that quite a few of early vaccine publicity materials such as ones that said HCWs would become “bulletproof” did not age well – and would be considered misinformation today. These people are never going to be able to take back this stain on the reputation of public health. “Vaccination is like a superpower”…..and the nurse explaining that she was doing the VAX to get to visit her mom.

      Again, in the attached article – one year later, the NH [nursing home] is in lockdown – and has been since March. Multiple patients from there with COVID in and out of the ER and hospital. All quadruple vaxxed.

      Now, the scary part. The doctor’s meeting this last week was on FRI – everyone is noticing this too. Almost universally, the positive patients are vaxxed/boosted. And at my medical conference, this same pattern is being noted everywhere. The medical conference speaker had a long talk about Original Antigenic Sin and how this may be playing a role. There was also an open discussion about withholding the 4th shot until June – because JUL and AUG historically have been the bad months – and the shots are doing well to last a month. Also – a big discussion ensued as to whether the truly unvaxxed were safer in their current status. Still no resolution there – lots of arguments back and forth.

      This I can tell you. We already have entire countries, Denmark, Sweden and Norway, abandoning their VAX programs – clearly largely because of what we are seeing. But there is something all of a sudden missing from press articles – that has been there for.a year – look at this attached one from small town America – not a word about getting vaccinated or boosted – not a peep. Not a peep about the advantage of vaccination, etc. I think the lack of mention is the first step.

      Just look at these three random large articles. For a year now – every article would be stuffed with either entreaties to be vaccinated or jeremiads against the losers who were not. All of a sudden the past few weeks – NOTHING OF THE SORT.

      I may be cynical from years of Big Pharma PsyOps. But something is up. I think there is growing realization of a big problem.


      1. ambrit

        A clarification please. FRI is ‘Febrile Respiratoty Infection?’
        Any medicos talk about Long Covid yet?
        Stay safe!

      2. Stick'em

        FRI may = Friday

        Agreed the purpose of vaccinations is now and always has been to flatten the curve on hospitalizations rather than stop infection transmission.

        Kaiser claims “approximately 234,000 deaths from COVID since June 2021 could have been prevented with primary series vaccination.”

        Dunno what to believe any longer. I think the notion of public health is dead and we have killed it.

      3. Brian (another one they call)

        Yves; It appears you are saying something that the doctor is refuting. I know that observations aren’t the whole story, but isn’t the doc saying being “vaccinated” is the problem? and booster shots are the problem? With Bill Gates saying the problem is going to get worse, how the hell does he know? Are people telling him to spout this junk because profits?
        The un “vaccinated” are not the problem is what I read.
        We must break the mass formation and realize it is endemic and that we have been lied to about the alleged “vaccine” since day one. The US is always and only focused on making a profit even if it kills all life on earth.
        If I have stated something wrong, I want to know so that I can correct this.

        1. Grebo

          He’s not saying being vaccinated is the problem. He’s saying most covid patients he’s seeing have been vaccinated. This could be because the unvaxxed have had covid already and have better resistance to the new variants than the vaxxed who only have (fading) resistance to the old variants. Also, when most people are vaxxed most cases will be vaxxed.

          Covid is still the problem but the old vaccines are decreasingly effective. That is not a surprise to anyone who has been paying attention, like presumably Bill Gates.

          1. Skunk

            He also said that admissions to the hospital aren’t happening. I think a key question is whether the vaccines themselves are causing some sort of shedding that produces positive tests. As has often been stated on NC, vaccines don’t prevent infection. But do they possibly also produce positive tests as an artifact? It’s just conjecture, but the initial testing process for the mRNA vaccines didn’t seem to report infection rates. I found this curious. A long phase of very mild illness, like IM Doc reports, could even have been a known artifact of these vaccines from the beginning. If so, we wouldn’t necessarily know about it because of the way the testing data was reported.

            In that case, a key question would be how to weigh the benefits of reduced hospitalization against the potential for more very mild illnesses. I’d be curious to know what percentage of very mild illnesses eventually will lead to long COVID symptoms. If the vaccines can somehow result in positive tests, could it be that this is not always due to active virus with something else triggering the positive test? Or is there active virus that could create a risk of long COVID?

        2. Basil Pesto

          It’s going to get worse because that is how viral evolution works. We would have to be astonishingly lucky for SARS2’s dominant evolved strains to continuously attenuate (and that is not the trend – vanilla omicron was the only dominant strain that was less virulent than the preceding dominant strain).

          Gates I suspect has been reading William Haseltine’s series in Forbes and is trying to pass it off as his own insight. In that series Haseltine outlines the possibility of SARS2 evolving into something as dangerous as SARS1. I think Gates understates the probability at 5%.

          1. The Rev Kev

            Well that depends, Basil. Whose word are you going to take? The word of an actual practicing professor – Professor Akiko Iwasaki – or that of a college-dropout? /sarc

          2. Skunk

            The strains that come to predominate are the more transmissible strains, but not necessarily the more acutely life-threatening strains. It depends partly on the tropism of the strain. The Omicron strains are more infectious, but seem to have a tropism for the upper airways rather than the lung. This contributes to lower rates of hospitalization during the acute phase of infection. As NC has emphasized in many posts, rates of acute illness are not necessarily indicative of risk from infection, as long-term impacts also have to be factored in. Long COVID can occur even from asymptomatic infection. There may be other long-term impacts that don’t necessarily manifest as accepted long COVID symptoms but may shorten lifespans. Chronic impacts may ultimately be more important than acute impacts. We don’t yet know the total ability of each strain to cause damage to the host.

            The virus is still mutating. SARS-CoV-2 seems capable of infecting a variety of tissues, so shifts in tropism could lead to as-yet-unseen problems that do not necessarily manifest as the acute forms of illness we saw with the early strains that caused shortness of breath. SARS-CoV-2 could mutate into a strain as dangerous as SARS-CoV-1, but I doubt it would look like SARS-CoV-1.

      4. TJHbuff

        Worse than I thought then. Everyone in the U.S. gets covid multiple times (basically because we’re doing zip to slow it down), probably two or three times a year. 300 million people with some level of disability. Sounds like a bad scifi novel.

        1. antidlc

          “Everyone in the U.S. gets covid multiple times (basically because we’re doing zip to slow it down), probably two or three times a year.”

          April 30,2022

          How Often Do We Have to Get Covid to Stop Getting Covid?

          That is, with Covid now manifesting itself among the vaccinated and those with prior infections (i.e., almost everybody) mainly as a standard-issue upper-respiratory infection, we should probably just treat it as a standard-issue infection, albeit with a heightened awareness that the spread of such diseases can and should be slowed by simple measures like staying home and wearing a mask when sick. The one “wild card,” Bregman allowed, is Long Covid, the risk that even mild cases now could lead to complications later. But taking reasonable care around cold-and-flu-like symptoms is likely to be more effective in curbing Covid, he thinks, than the current widely followed approach of taking rapid Covid tests and going about life as normal if they come back negative — “then half the time a week later they turn out to be positive.”

          What about building immunity? Exposing children early on to germs and allergens pays dividends later, Bregman said, but for adults “the costs of getting sick outweigh the benefits.” So yes, most of us will probably get Covid, repeatedly. No need to rush it, though.

      5. flora

        Thanks for posting IM Doc’s observations. I trust his reported observations as accurate observations of what he’s seeing.

      6. Juneau

        “original antigenic sin” related to the vaccines. My understanding of this concept is that the immune system is now fighting the last battle (original strain) while the virus has moved on-the immune system is so busy readying for the first Covid strain than it doesn’t have reserves to focus on the new strains. Hence repeated infections with newer strains. To quote wikipedia::Original antigenic sin, also known as antigenic imprinting or the Hoskins effect,[1] refers to the propensity of the body’s immune system to preferentially utilize immunological memory based on a previous infection when a second slightly different version of that foreign pathogen (e.g. a virus or bacterium) is encountered. This leaves the immune system “trapped” by the first response it has made to each antigen, and unable to mount potentially more effective responses during subsequent infections.

        So boosting is counterproductive, less than helpful.

        1. Skunk

          I’m not sure you would need to invoke original antigenic sin in this case. The vaccines were produced to respond to the original strain. The current Omicron strains are different, so you would expect the vaccines to be less effective against Omicron. If you produced vaccines specifically designed to counter the current Omicron strains, you might find that infections didn’t then produce noticeable symptoms. I’m not saying original antigenic sin isn’t relevant, but you can partly explain increased infections simply as escape from the original vaccine formula as new strains have emerged.

      7. pjay

        Following IM Doc’s comments, whenever I see or hear commentary about “long covid,” two questions immediately come to mind:

        (1) To what is the comment referring by “long COVID” – what symptoms, how long, what evidence, etc.?

        (2) Is there any useful research on the possible relationship between at least some of these “long COVID” observations and possible effects of vaccines themselves?

        For example, re question (1), the review cited in the tweet above combined a number of studies with what seemed to be a pretty broad definition of “long covid” in regard to both symptoms and time (new or persistent symptoms present *three or more weeks* after original onset). This was really a meta-review of “post-acute COVID syndrome,” which some researchers distinguish from actual “long covid” by defining the later as persistent or new symptoms six months or more after original onset. Please note that I am not a “long covid denier.” My brother had some fairly significant LC symptoms for almost a year (he got it early – March of 2020 – long before Omicron or even Delta), though he is much better now. But when I see claims of 50-80 percent, I’m skeptical, especially about the definition of LC being used and what that actually means.

        Re (2), there seems to be very little interest in trying to determine the extent to which “LC” symptoms might be adverse effects of the vaccines themselves. Again, I’m not trying to claim all LC is vaccine related (my brother’s case was pre-vaccine), but especially given what seems to be its increased prevalence, I would like to know the vaccination status of research subjects. I read this interesting article in Science back in January, but I have not seen much follow-up:

        I’d be interested in the opinions of IM Doc or others with research or clinical experience.

      8. ijustplayoneontv

        wow. amazed that where he is these sort of discussions can happen. Not where I am. Your license would be threatened. no joke.

      9. Maritimer

        Very interesting thread. As an UNINJECTED person, I rely on prophylaxis. The VAX pushers and all their studies rarely, if ever, mention prophylaxis. For instance today’s link:
        “Two new Omicron variants detected in the U.S. could spark another COVID wave. Research shows these people will fare best Fortune (David L)”

        It never even considers prophylaxis as a means of a best outcome. And early treatment, fogedaboutit! Absolutely stunning, unScience.

        Any study, analysis that does not consider or even mention prophylaxis and early treatment is, IMO, rubbish.

      10. Lambert Strether

        > You just have to multiply by 6 on this years’s number to get close to accurate

        This is what I am doing with the Democrat-blue “Biden Line” on the daily national case count chart that I run in Water Cooler. The “Biden Line” is higher than all but the Omicron peak.

        You may be done with Covid, but Covid is not done with you……

  9. Louis Fyne

    Ironically the leak could make conservative fence-sitters join Alito.

    “Roe has been banned” and the sky is not falling outside of the Beltway, especially right now as most people are thinking about other things before Roe.

    1. QuarterBack

      I can’t say that I was surprised by this (preliminary) ruling. Over decades, the parties have been increasingly making the issue a virtual litmus test. This all but ensures uniformity of position for any power players in government. Nuance and deliberation have all but faded away. For all the talk of diversity, this issue has become amongst the most binary.

    2. neo-realist

      I don’t think there were conservative-fence sitters on the Alito memo. I think Roberts on the abortion issue would have let Roe stand. In spite of his conservatism, I believe he has a wee bit of pragmatism on the issue due to the social/political fallout.

      The sky will fall outside the beltway when the dead bodies start falling in the red and swing states from the back alley abortions and the imprisonment of women caught knocking out the “bun in the oven.”

    3. ACPAL

      In my opinion the real fallout is the public losing trust in the SC. One, SC appointments have become political footballs, more openly than before. Two, by cancelling, or even weakening Roe v Wade it implies that all previous SC decisions are up for grabs. The First (Executive) and Second (Legislative) Estates of the government have lost the public’s trust and the Fourth (Media) Estate is totally corrupt, biased, and censor-happy. That leaves the Third (Judicial) Estate to be the impartial arbiter of law and protector of the minorities from the majorities. Their recent decisions that weakened Roe v Wade and allowing states to pass laws that are not only contrary to the SC’s past decisions but also contrary to good governance shows that not even the SC can be trusted, let alone honored. There is now no portion of our government that we can turn to and depend on. Can such a government stand for long?

    1. Maritimer

      IVER very popular in my Barn and others in the hood. Also, in NH, KS and TN.

    2. Basil Pesto

      Again, it is within this context that I feel morally and ethically obligated to expose everything they have done to cause the millions of unnecessary deaths that could have been avoided if we had globally and systematically deployed ivermectin based on the incredible results from bold health ministry programs around the world like the city of Itajai, India’s Uttar Pradesh, Mexico City, Japan, the Argentinian states of La Pampas and Misiones, Peru, Phillipines, and Honduras among others.


      there is only one unquestionably proven intervention that would have stopped – and would still stop – SARS2 in its tracks and, brother, Ivermectin ain’t it.

      I would add that China knows an enormous amount about coronaviruses, and demonstrably doesn’t care what the west thinks about how they go about handling the problem (extremely adroitly, as it turns out, notwithstanding the relentless propagandising against them). Yet notice how they have absolutely no interest in Ivermectin as part of their approach to controlling the pandemic? Because (just like vaccines!) it isn’t necessary, and it isn’t anywhere near as efficient at saving lives (and preserving quotidian freedoms – yknow, being able to go indoors anywhere and talk/eat/laugh without a mask and without having to worry about infection) as what they’re already doing.

      The likes of FLCCC won’t point this out because, contrary to their preposterous claim of being non-conflicted, they are an intrinsically political organisation who risibly put their name to some kind of American trucker convoy against mandates – long after mandates had been pretty much abandoned! Not just vaccine mandates – which I have been against – mind you, but a blanket reaction against all public health protections against SARS2 of any sort. From this we can infer that FLCCC’s preferred policy is to take
      useful (and some not-particularly useful) public health protections and, instead of improving upon them, or convincing
      people of their benefit, remove them and replace them with Ivermectin and cumin seeds or whatever the fuck. Even assuming some salutary benefit of Ivermectin, which I am fully
      prepared to do, on the timescale that matters (at least a decade), this will end in hundreds of thousands dead. No Bill Gates needed.

      The demonisation of Ivermectin has been transcendentally stupid. But It is a distraction, and Kory is a hucksterish untrustworthy nonentity.* imo of course.

      *Quite like Bill Gates as it turns out actually! And note too the reverential guru-worship tones reserved for Kory in his comments section – quite a bit like the comments on John Campbell’s YouTube videos even though he’s completely gone off the rails (Kevin Carhart, if you’re reading this: you were right, I was wrong) – this tone is very similar to the reverential idol worship often reserved for Gates by his most uncritical PMC acolytes

      1. CanCyn

        Thank you for this Basil Pesto. I was receiving the FLCC newsletter, but for sometime both their strident and breathless and somewhat National Enquirish tone put me off. You have furthered and clarified my mistrust.

      2. PlutoniumKun

        Yup, I have just as strong a mistrust of those doctors pushing the line that Covid can just be treated using *insert currently favoured drug/protocol* without vaccines or other precautions, as I do of those public health authorities pretending that the vaccine solves the problem.

        1. Basil Pesto

          The respective parties are almost mirror images of each other at this point. Pretty much everyone sees through at least one of them, but it’s amazing that so few can see through both, and that we are wasting our time with this inane covid remedy idpol bullshit while China just… gets on with solving the problem, a task which would be much easier for them and us with some humility, deference and will to co-operate on our part. We (ex China) are a truly hopeless idiot race.

          (Apologies for my tone but basically every day I go to bed angry, and wake up angry)

          1. PlutoniumKun

            I hear you.

            I keep thinking I can’t be shocked any more by the collapse of basic scientific/ethical standards anymore in the public health community, but the blanket attempt to pretend the outbreak of pediatric liver failure has nothing to do with Covid has pushed me to the edge of anger and despair.

            I keep hearing scientists talking about ‘the public having lost faith in science and rationality’. Sorry, but no. It is usually self appointed gatekeepers of science and rationality who have abandoned the core principles of sound epistemology and decision making who have betrayed the public. The public is just catching on to this reality.

            1. Basil Pesto

              well said, although

              The public is just catching on to this reality.

              as much as I’d like to believe that, I’m not sure I’m as hopeful that that’s the case. But something has to give eventually, right?

              Mind you, arguably the worse outcome would be if the public is catching/caught on and just… didn’t care. A collective shoulder shrug at the public’s own declining life expectancy. And this outcome would not entirely surprise me because the world (ex China) has shuffled itself into a cul-de-sac of learned helplessness, which itself strikes me as a tremendously unhealthy thing.

  10. ex_zakly

    The article about US Army helicopter transfers of ISIS fighters gets the helicopters wrong – the article states that the copters are chinooks, but in the embedded video they very clearly are not.

    1. Lambert Strether

      > corporations wanting to flog more productivity from their depressed employees

      “Flog” is right. I can’t imagine anything less likely to pull me out of a depression than being shuffled off to a bot.

  11. David

    “Leaked video shows US choppers airlifting ISIS fighters in Iraq: Report The Cradle”

    Or maybe not. The videos shows two unidentified helicopters, neither of which is a CH-47, in an unknown part of the world, one flying past and the other preparing to take off. And the ISIS link is from a report by, let’s see, oh, the (London-based) Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, based on something they say somebody said to them five years ago. Right.

    1. The Rev Kev

      I have no idea how may reports I have seen over the years of ISIS or Al Qaeda commanders and their families being picked up and moved when under threat by unmarked helicopters. Or unmarked helicopters flying in supplies to ISIS units. Once I saw a B & W video taken by what was probably hidden recon troops of this actually happening. Of course the Pentagon or the CIA will never admit that this ever happened. You wonder though what those chopper pilots will tell their kids when they ask ‘What did you do in the war, daddy?’

      But there is a form of proof that I can offer. In Syria and the Ukraine, when you have a besieged city, the Russians will open up evacuation lanes to get the civilians out and we have just seen this in Mariupol. Too lazy right now to look up the name of the place but when the US besieged a city that had ISIS units in Iraq, they opened up an evacuation lane for the Jihadists and never even attacked them when they were all out of the city. And then there is this Greyzone article-

    2. Colonel Smithers

      Thank you, David.

      I saw a similar video about 2 – 3 years ago.

      I thought the Syrian Observatory, just a bloke really, not an institution, and a (former) jihadist who escaped retribution at Homs in the 1980s, spouts from above a parade of shops, in his case a chippie, in Leicester.

      His associate Bellingcat lives down the road in Coventry and started life as a gamer and somewhat obsessive contributor BTL, from his bed sit, at the Guardian. Bellingcat was spotted. The rest is history.

      1. Colonel Smithers

        I should have added that, speaking of footage, some of the footage of atrocities (by the Assad government) were produced by Bell Pottinger, a now bust British PR firm, at studios in Alexandria. There were some give aways in the sets, such as ambulances with French language messages.

        One of the producers is of Lebanese origin and still trying to become a Tory MP. The Tory blue rinse are not convinced by his schtick even when he brings along his delectable Welsh rose former girlfriend and lays on the Brexiteer stuff thick.

    3. digi_owl

      Looks like they could be Bell 412s.

      Plenty of military and government operators of them in the area, never mind it being a popular commercial craft.

      Also interesting that the video appears to a recording of another video being played back, with the notice of IPCamera in one corner and a date (2022-04-20?) in another.

      So how was this recorded? A off the shelf, remotely operated, webcam?

      1. digi_owl

        Curiouser and curiouser, i actually went and dug up the telegram post the video was lifted from (probably ended up flagging me on a whole lot of databases). And there they identified them as AGU(sta-Bell) 212s.

        Also had a couple of stills with some classic still camera date and time numbers in the corner, showing it to be 2022-04-20 15:00.

        Wonder why the article got it so blatantly wrong.

  12. lou strong

    After weeks of rumors about high-rank Nato officers trapped in Mariupol with the Azov battalion, I’m reading that Canadian Major-General Trevor John Cadieu has been captured by the Russians while trying to escape from Azovstal .

    1. ambrit

      Well, then, if he was caught trying to escape, (he’s lucky it was not “shot while trying to escape,”) he cannot claim “observer” status, no? (The more knowledgable please confirm or correct me on this.)
      Plus, how long was he in custody before his capture was announced? I’ll bet he might have spent some time with an old fashioned ex-KGB interrogation team.

      1. Polar Socialist

        Captured on Monday, announced/verified on Tuesday is the news in Telegram. Apparently detained while trying to leave trough a humanitarian corridor.

    2. Alyosha

      Although only a few Brits have been shown, there are also reports now that 75 foreign fighters have been captured. I’d imagine most in Mariupol. In the DPR they’re being charged as mercenaries and can receive the death penalty. I’d imagine ranking officers would be taken to Russia. Given that the Canadian general in question is retired and went to Ukraine, it’s an interesting question whether he retired before he went to Ukraine and when he arrived.

      1. The Rev Kev

        It’s gunna be one of those wars where you will have fighters from dozens of countries getting involved and I mean dozens. I even saw a brief clip with two Japanese that came to fight for the Ukraine. But the DPR is quite correct in charging mercs as mercenaries and those guys knew the risk when they went there. I am willing to bet that hundreds of them have been killed by now but like those that went to Syria to fight, their home governments will not want to know them afterwards when they try to go home.

          1. jsn

            Yeah, Zelinsky is making real headway cleaning up Ukraine’s neo-Nazi problem.

            It’s tough getting them all in one pile and then getting someone else to take them off your lawn but he managed it.

            To bad the Russians can’t get to his personal “body guards”, he might start delivering on his campaign promises.

            1. Jacob Hatch

              Which promises? The ones like Joe Biden made to get elected, or the ones he made to Ihor Valeriyovych Kolomoyskyi, just as Biden, Trump, Obama, and all before them made behind closed doors to their crime bosses. The former is meant to be broken, failure to keep the later can be fatal to career, health, and family.

      2. lou strong

        What I read about Cadier is that he resigned after a scandal for sexual misconduct, so the hypothesis is that the “scandal” was organized to get him out of the official ranks so that he could follow the Ukrainian undercover operation,

    3. David

      I’ve seen nothing in the western media, or even sources like Al-Jazeera, for the moment. If the story is true, then it presumably won’t be very long before there’s some official confirmation from the Canadians.

      If Cadieu is retired then he doesn’t get the full Geneva Convention protection, but the Russians are still obliged to treat him as they would any other non-combatant within their control. As I pointed out when we last discussed this, none of the fighters in Ukraine are “mercenaries” within the UN definition, so it’s not clear what they could be put on trial for. Whilst Russia may have its own legislation on mercenaries, it’s hard to see how that could apply to alleged offences committed in another country.

      1. Janie

        Julian Assange? About to spend the rest of his life in US prison for alleged offenses committed in another country…

      2. lou strong

        Cadier’s story comes from Russian sources, as far as I remember they say as well that ,given his profile, he was brought to Moscow.
        For the British fighters who fell prisoners,this morning I came across a video showing Aslin and Pinner formally charged with various crimes by the Donetsk PR prosecutors.

      3. Polar Socialist

        It’s not Russia prosecuting anyone, but the independent state of Donetsk People’s Republic. If that makes any difference. Some think it does, since Russia doesn’t have capital punishment, but Donetsk does.

        For now, they are going to prosecute people on crimes during “the occupation” since 2014. According to them, they have over 4000 Ukrainian POWs whom they’re filtering against their huge dome of abuse reports they’ve collected. They may not care if somebody checks only five of the six conditions required and instead get some payback on people they think came to Ukraine just to kill Donbassians for the fun of it instead of for the money.

        1. David

          Yes, I assume that’s how they would have to do it, although there’s the interesting question of which law they would be tried under. I don’t know what state the DPR legal code is in, or even if they have one, but this is a very specialised area.

      4. digi_owl

        Far too much of Al-Jazeera’s coverage of the conflict seems to be cut and paste from Reuters. And Reuters is one company i find less and less trustworthy as the years go by.

    4. PlutoniumKun

      I just did a quick google and this Ottawa newspaper report has lots of detail.

      Trevor Cadieu left the Canadian military on April 5, according to the Department of National Defence. He travelled to Ukraine shortly after with the intention to volunteer for that country’s military which is battling a Russian invasion, multiple defence sources confirmed to this newspaper.

      The Canadian Forces National Investigation Service which is investigating Cadieu originally had difficulty contacting the retired lieutenant-general but has since established communication with him.

      Senior Canadian military leaders were briefed about Cadieu’s decision to travel to Ukraine, according to sources.

      It all seems quite odd – a former highflyer who is subject to an old accusation (from 1994) and immediately retires and flies to Ukraine despite an ongoing investigation. Lots of scope there for scandal and theorizing.

      1. Lambert Strether

        > a former highflyer who is subject to an old accusation (from 1994) and immediately retires and flies to Ukraine despite an ongoing investigation.

        Sounds a bit like The Spy Who Came In From the Cold….

  13. Wukchumni

    The new striders of the purple sage…

    Was in the purple, yellow and red along the Sespe River, with purple sage dominating the action-but only one of around 6 flowers in that hue, with frankly oodles of yellow flowers, golden poppies & mariposa lilies too, it was a floral feast for the eyes.

    Almost all action other than human beans en route to hot springs was of the cold-blooded type, we saw 4 rattlers and 6 less lethal serpents, and if I got a buck for every lizard skittering in front of me on the dusty trail, well that’d be around $358 coming my way.

    Willett hot springs is high up in a canyon, perched below cliffs full of conglomerate pressed into service by an ocean overhead eons ago, with minor onslaughts of tiny pebbles occurring occasionally.

    60% of the backpackers on the trail were women, things have certainly changed from back in the day 20 years ago when it would’ve been closer to 80% of the male persuasion.

    1. juno mas

      Yes, the canyons of the Sespe are a delight in trhe Spring. Plenty of lizards but no Condors?! (You certainly know that the Sespe was the first Condor sanctuary—I saw them in flight back in the late ’60’s.)

      Women are increasing in the backcountry hiker cadre. I believe it has much to do with the better equipment available and the personalized clothing to match their needs. Couple that with current women writing and blogging their hiking experience, the number of adventurers is bound to grow.

      The backcountry can be a transformative experience in this noisy, connected, and digitally altered world.

  14. super extra

    I had a moderately intelligent thought to share however I reached the antidote and my thoughts disappeared under ‘ooooh, big paws! look at yer giant mitts! what a pretty kitty!’

    1. Nikkikat

      Agreed super extra, that is one exceptional looking kitty. I love how the white paws stand out against his tiger stripes. Intelligent face. Thanks kitty, you made us smile!

  15. BillS

    The Jacques Baud interview is indeed very interesting. I would like to have read more about the makeup of the UKR armed forces. He posits that the UKR military is dominated by foreign fighters recruited from European far-right groups. I cannot tell you how many times I have been in conversations where people pooh-pooh the idea that the UKR army and political sphere are infested by people with far-right sympathies. I have a hard time coming up with dependable sources that indicate that this is true. (I try to refer people to pre-war articles on Azov and Pravy Sektor, etc.)

    Oh and his acronym for “France, UK and US” is priceless! FUKUS!

    This level-headed commentary is why I love NC!!!!!!

    1. Colonel Smithers

      Thank you, Bill.

      The guy who massacred worshippers at a mosque in Canterbury, New Zealand, some years ago had Ukrainian militia links.

      This path has been well travelled for some years, beginning with Ustashe sympathisers in Croatia in the early 1990s. Some of the foreign fighters then were from the Croat diaspora, but were soon joined by far right activists from Europe, North America and Australia.

      Some of the foreign fighters in Ukraine are former French Foreign Legion soldiers of east and central Europeam origin. There was an influx into the Legion from the mid 1990s, especially as the economies of the region went through difficult times. Some fighters have French citizenship, which led to some confusion about franco-francais fighters. There was a drive to recruit mercenaries in France soon after new year.

      1. The Rev Kev

        ‘The guy who massacred worshippers at a mosque in Canterbury, New Zealand, some years ago had Ukrainian militia links.’

        Thank you, Colonel, He did indeed. His flak-jacket had the black sun symbol on it and that Ukrainian militia was supposed to be Azov. Of course that was in the days when they were the bad guys.

        1. LawnDart

          I think that the symbolism is often misunderstood and misinterpreted. You see, we’re of a younger generation and often express ourselves through tattoos and piercings, and will appropriate and remix the old into something new. Now there’s a lot of pearl-clutching over the fact that many Ukrainian Defenders have tattoos with the letters “SS” but that actually stands for “Safe Sex” which is really a positive message and has nothing to do with nazi-stuff! And here’s more:

          ‘It symbolises resistance’: Ukrainians get tattoos to back war effort

          Ukrainians are inking the fight for their country on to their bodies, with artists getting requests for tattoos of molotov cocktails, anti-tank missiles and even a type of bread that has become an unlikely symbol of national identity because Russians struggle to pronounce it

          1. JohnA

            As for a type of bread that has become an unlikely symbol of national identity because Russians struggle to pronounce it

            That was supposedly a test used at armed checkpoints in Ukraine controlled areas. If the driver and occupants of the car pronounced the word in the Russian way, they were detained, or allegedly, shot. I did see footage of young kids with ak-47s or similar pointing them inside such cars and asking the question.

      2. BillS

        This is another point that I try to engage people with when they say we should give weapons to Ukraine. I bring up the possibility of militants committing mass murder in European cities (and other places, as well) as well as the mountains of small arms, RPGs, Stingers, etc. that can find their way into the hands of local European crazies. (Brussels, for example, is a major center of the illegal arms trade. Many second-hand weapons from the Yugoslav disintegration found their way there.. to be used in things like the Bataclan and Charlie Hebdo attacks). Flooding Ukraine with weapons is practically inviting organized crime gangs from all over the world (but especially Europe) to stock up! Moreover, when Ukraine resistance collapses and the war ends, how many enraged Ukrainian war veterans will end up in western Europe with their weapons? Furthermore, any rump Ukrainian state is likely to be ungovernable for the same reasons.

        1. Colonel Smithers

          Thank you, Bill.

          That was the case in the U.K. when I was studying law in the early 1990s and attended lectures by policemen. Some arms were brought home as trophies / souvenirs and sold.

    2. Revenant

      There is a US report on Nazi infiltration of Ukraine’s military training system. I read it on niqnaq or thesaker.

      I will try to find it.

  16. Solarjay

    California renewables:

    Yes this is a good sign. And this only happens on a few specific days in spring when loads are the lowest and solar production is highest.
    Loads are lowest because very little heating or cooling, little water pumping etc.
    production is highest because temperatures are cooler, and the sun angle to the solar panels is almost perfect and the air is quite clean.
    Also windy spring so wind turbines are producing lots as well.

    Still a long long way to go.

    1. Grumpy Engineer

      Yes. And whenever I see a report of renewables providing an unusually high percentage of power generation, I ask this: What percentage of power were the renewables providing 12 hours later?

      Somehow the reports never mention this.

      1. WobblyTelomeres


        Consider one or more Stirling engines embedded in a high-mass black sphere or cube and located such that it receives sunlight, possibly concentrated, during the day and is insulated at night. The last time I checked, Stirling engines were achieving 29% conversion efficiency, which was comparable to solar panels.

        Would such a device quell your doubts?


        Note: please contact Yves for my info if you would care to patent this idea.

    2. PlutoniumKun

      Its all down to grid capacity.

      Ireland (the island, which operates as one grid) has now brought its grid up to 75% renewables capacity, with a target of 95% by 2030. I recall sitting in a conference in 2005 being told that it was impossible to get above 40%. Last year 39% of electricity was from renewables, almost all wind in winter, this was down from 42% the previous year (mostly due to 2020 having an exceptionally windy winter).

      The first solar farm has gone online in 2022, which should balance things up for summer loading when solar targets are met – in far northern climes, wind and solar tend to complement each other well – when high pressure zones settle in you get lots of sun but no wind, vice versa when oceanic low pressure zones are active. CO2 intensity of electricity generation in Ireland is now half what it was in 2005, and going down annually at a steady pace.

  17. The Rev Kev

    “Can Western Tanks, Artillery, and Missiles Save Ukraine? Don’t Count on It.”

    This article reads almost like it was written by Scott Ritter and I can very much recommend it. And the conclusion is the same – the Ukraine is screwed. They would need a year or two to put together units to go up against the Russian with but they would have no way to get them into battle without them being annihilated by the Russians first. And right now the Ukrainians are losing several hundred men killed, wounded, captured or missing each and every day. The Russian have said to hell with it and are now fighting the war that they were trained for which is bad news for the Ukrainians. And all those artillery units that the west is sending to the Ukraine? In a video I watched a few hours ago, Scott Ritter made the brutal point that it is a death sentence for any men attached to that gear. By Zelenski, the US and the EU refusing to negotiate and end this war, it will only mean the deaths of tens of thousands of people and the Ukrainians may not have anything left to negotiate with. Maybe Washington and Brussels see that as a good thing as it will inspire generational hatred to the Russians like the ultra-nationalists have. They talk about this war going on for ten years but I ask with what soldiers? The Ukraine is running out of warm bodies now. Here, by the way, is that video that I mentioned that has Scott Ritter, Katie Halper and Aaron Maté in it- (2:19 mins)

    1. Polar Socialist

      the Ukrainians may not have anything left to negotiate with

      Doctorow’s article in today’s links says Russian media is making this point, and hoping West keeps the weapons coming so that the current regime doesn’t call it quits and will be defeated fully and properly.

      The biggest threat to Putin’s power could be a “premature” peace in Ukraine. Obviously there’s no smart enough player in the West to make a public peace offer that would be really hard to neglect while it still retained some feasible Ukraine for the West use as it’s forward base to threaten Russia defend democracy.

  18. fresno dan

    America’s ideological blinkers and the Ukraine war Gilbert Doctorow. Important. His next most recent is interesting, if more parochial: FX and grocery shopping in St. Petersburg: “The Eagle Has Landed”: A voyage to St Petersburg via the far side of the moon.

    My inspection began with wines and I can report that the Spanish and Italian wines remain strongly represented and at prices unchanged from where they were on my last visit in late October. I imagine that the warehouses of this chain and their importers have goods on hand to last several months more. These products will eventually be replaced by an enlarged assortment of Chilean, Argentinian, South African and other wines from friendly countries. Moreover, ever more shelf space will be allocated to the growing numbers of quality wines from the South of Russia and Crimea. These Russian products are today very well packaged in high quality bottles and sometimes also have good quality liquid inside.
    Well, I am impressed with the supply side in St. Petersburg – at least with regard to wine. Will our own wine supply continue to keep me thoroughly looped in these perilous times (especially in these times with people coping by getting ever deeper plouged and more frequently sloshed)? Who knows! – in an abundance of caution, I’m stocking up!

    1. Wukchumni

      One nice thing about Fresno is it’s jug wine-adjacent, an easy drive to Modesto or Manteca to fill your larder, or Lodi.

      1. Keith in Modesto

        You live in/near Fresno and you have to drive to Modesto to fill your larder???????!

        1. Wukchumni

          Sorry, you appear to be the victim of a failed play on words, Manteca is only included since it translates to Lard in English, and no sulfites were added to this mark to Modesto missive.

  19. fresno dan
    Despite the coercive pressure on India to not buy Russian oil, which India has largely adhered to, at significant cost because the Russians are willing to give large discounts, it turns out that the US itself has bought more Russian oil than India since the war began. Not to speak of massive EU oil and gas purchases, and most recently Poland and Hungary agreed to pay in roubles. So the gamble has failed, but EU energy security has been damaged.

    In fact, the entire gamut of Western actions could be seen as counter-productive. The only cohort that has benefited at all is the Deep State, especially the Military Industrial Complex in the US, which needs a good little war somewhere to support its raison d’etre and to make reliable profits. The $80 billion of arms left behind in Afghanistan is water under the bridge (the US taxpayer has already paid for it), and nobody cares where it ends up (probably in India).
    What we are seeing is truly “war by other means”: Military, economic, information, in other words ‘Unrestricted Warfare’ as in the 1999 book by two Chinese colonels. Sad to say, despite Big Tech and Hollywood and soft power, the US is not winning.
    despite because of Big Tech and Hollywood* and soft power, the US is not winning
    *remember, only in Hollywood, is Hollywood “liberal”

    1. The Rev Kev

      ‘it turns out that the US itself has bought more Russian oil than India since the war began.’

      That happened too back in 2015. At the same time Obama was forcing those EU countries to sanction Russia and cut back in trade, the US at the time actually increased trade with Russia.

  20. brook trout

    51-80% prevalence of long covid: does this statistic pass the smell test? I know that the plural of anecdote is not data and that one cannot make inferences from the specific to the general. Nevertheless . . . I have nine people in my immediate circle who have had clinically verified covid, ranging in ages 2 (grandson) to 74 (closest friend). From the timing of the cases, three were likely Delta, the others Omicron. None of them, to the best of my knowledge, which in this matter would be fairly complete, have suffered from long covid. If the 51-80% cited in the various studies were true, even at the lower bound the statistical likelihood of the nine people in my small circle who contracted covid all escaping long covid symptoms is stunningly small. Either that or being my close friend or relative means one is extraordinarily lucky. (You’d have to ask them, YMMV)
    I do not wish to dismiss the existence of long covid; its existence is one of the main reasons I am glad that I have personally evaded the disease up to this point. No covid means no long covid. But 51-80% of the cases developing long covid? Doing the math suggests the statistic doesn’t pass my smell test.
    On the other hand, the symptoms cited include anxiety and depression. If you’ve not been experiencing either of these, you’ve just not been paying attention, as the saying goes.

    1. haywood

      Yeah I couldn’t figure that out either. I didn’t did too deep into the methodology assuming that it including broader problems like fatigue and included those who had them for shorter durations like 3 weeks (not to diminish the hell that is a 3 week fatigue inducing illness).

      Long covid is very real and very widespread and very very bad. I worry about these studies’ headlines reinforcing the cold cruel narrative that long covid is just a bunch of people being tired or blaming all kinds of unrelated common problems on the trendy new disease.

  21. The Rev Kev

    ‘On May 2, 2014, dozens of people were murdered or burned alive in the Odessa Trades Unions Building at the hands of the so-called Ukrainian nationalists months after the regime change. The perpetrators walk free.’

    There is worse out there. Some people jumped from the high windows rather than burn to death and while they were laying on the ground injured, the ultra-nationalists would come up and bash them with metal bars. Just read today that right now in Odessa, that the Nazis are going after the survivors of that massacre. I guess that they want to eliminate any future witnesses for any trials.

      1. Polar Socialist

        While I don’t have any links nor have I seen anything about hunting the survivors, I can say there have been multiple articles in Russian media about the incidence, naming names of those held responsible and wondering if they will be brought to justice “when the region is finally liberated from nationalists”.

        According to Telegram there has also been rush on both sides of the conflict regarding the memorials of WW2. Those being the central points for local celebrations of VE day, one side is tearing them down as fast as it can, the other is fixing and decorating them.

  22. fresno dan
    But the meeting would not exactly be to condemn Putin, based on what he told the paper. He said that the real “scandal” of Putin’s war is “NATO barking at Russia’s door,” which he said caused the Kremlin to “react badly and unleash the conflict.”
    I think the Pope is being more objective and less wedded to dogma than the vast majority of the western secular media. Will this finally break the Ukraine narrative? We can only pray, because all the bunk I was indoctrinated in school about a free press isn’t getting me much in the way of objective reality

  23. Mikel

    “Citi’s London Trading Desk Behind Rare European ‘Flash Crash’ “Bloomberg

    They aren’t so rare that I would trust automated stop/loss set-ups.

  24. Mikel

    This is a bit of a follow up to a previous post from from Yves wondering how on earth did the US foregin policy establishment think their “my way or the highway” foreign policy was going to fare in India.

    I commented to the effect that the assimilation that has occurred here in the states has clouded their view.
    From the article above:

    “…I must admit to a certain prejudice against Daleep Singh for his hatchet-job in India, where he threatened grave but unnamed “consequences” if India didn’t abjectly toe the US line on sanctions. In the event, in one of those “the dog it was that died” scenarios that show how Karma loves a good joke, it was Singh who lost his job, and the Russian rouble is at levels above where it was before his supposedly crippling sanctions were imposed.

    I figure I am permitted schadenfreude for a moment about Singh, but then reality strikes. (In truth, you can’t blame him alone: There are tons of Indian-origin people in the US who work assiduously against India’s interests, such as Pramila Jayapal, Ro Khanna, Vijay Prashad, Biju Mathews, Sunitha Viswanathan, et al). But the real story is how badly his sanctions have fared….”

  25. Mikel

    “In Republican Primaries, China is the Enemy” Washington Monthly

    They’re just saying out loud what the democratic establishment says with fuzzy policy language like “shift to Asia.”

  26. RobertC

    Imperial Collapse Watch

    Turnaround is fair play as Putin puts West on notice: Moscow can terminate exports and deals

    LONDON, May 3 (Reuters) – Russian President Vladimir Putin put the West on notice on Tuesday that he could terminate exports and deals, the Kremlin’s toughest response yet to the sanctions burden imposed by the United States and allies over the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

    Putin, Russia’s paramount leader since 1999, signed a broad decree on Tuesday which forbade the export of products and raw materials to people and entities on a sanctions list that he instructed the government to draw up within 10 days.

    The decree, which came into force with its publication, gives Moscow the power to sow chaos across markets as it could at any moment halt exports or tear up contracts with an entity or individual it has sanctioned.

    1. The Rev Kev

      This is a story worth following. In ten days time it seems that Russia is going to drop the boom on some countries though I would guess that this will be more a final financial warning than an all out attack. In the EU I predict shock, outrage and accusations and the refrain will be ‘You can’t do that!’ Maybe when Germany stole that Russian owned infrastructure held by Gazprom that that was the final straw. And if the US gets distracted by the Roe-Wade fracas for the rest of the month, to a large extent the EU will be on their own. Under an international-law based order, countries have protection and can sue for compensation. Under a rules-based order you get nada as the EU s about to discover.

  27. Vegetius

    TFW when I check in on NC after a while and there’s Richard Spencer’s ex in the links.

    You guys are awesome!

  28. orlbucfan

    At least thermonuclear war hasn’t started….yet. With the stupids running this country, senile Joe, Nuland, and the so-called “elites,” it’s nothing short of a miracle. And then you’ve got the Russians, they’ve got a few dumbos in their ranks, too.

  29. Maritimer


    The Supreme Court of First World India:

    “India’s top court on Monday ruled that no person can be forced to get vaccinated and the constitution gives everyone the right to refuse vaccination, in a milestone judgement on the country’s Covid-19 policy.

    A bench including Justices L Nageswara Rao and B R Gavai was hearing a petition on the mandatory inoculation policies introduced by some state governments, which barred unvaccinated people from entering certain public places.”

    Meanwhile, Third World Canada threatens, intimidates, segregates and discriminates against the Uninjected.

  30. Mike

    I read this and found it interesting. I think it is just the start.

    On top of that, CalPERS is making risky moves with the retirement funds it manages. It plans to borrow up to 5% of its $500 billion asset pool to juice returns. And it’s increased its allocation to private equity and private debt.

  31. Deltron

    An article for the guillotine watch…

    Posh first-class suites and a stretching area: Upgrades planned for world’s longest flight

    Check out the pics. Excerpt:

    Qantas, the flag carrier of Australia, is gearing up to launch the world’s two longest flights.

    Dubbed “Project Sunrise,” the airline has been working since well before the pandemic to take on the “final frontier of aviation,” direct flights from the east coast of Australia to Europe and New York.

    As Australia reopens after being closed to visitors for nearly two years, the airline is making a big bet on the return of ultra-long-haul travel. Qantas formalized plans on Sunday evening to order 12 Airbus A350-1000 aircraft that will be capable of flying these roughly 10,000-mile-long hops.

    1. Lambert Strether

      > As Australia reopens after being closed to visitors for nearly two years

      Good thing Gladys and Scotty infected everybody. Now all these posh people don’t need to bother with masks.

    2. Basil Pesto

      I can’t believe 6000 Australians and rising are dead just so Qantas could launch a marquee international route, lol.

      Like, yes that’s a little bit reductive but it’s essentially true. Few lobbied harder for Let Er Rip here than Qantas did. Rather shreds the positive reputation they’ve acquired over a century thanks to their stellar safety record.

  32. Anon

    Re: Shanghai lockdown: The hard life of a homeless deliveryman BBC (resilc)

    Underneath the bridge
    Tarp has sprung a leak
    And the animals I’ve trapped
    Have all become my pets
    And I’m living off of grass
    And the drippings from the ceiling
    It’s okay to eat fish
    ‘Cause they don’t have any feelings

    And this landscape was painted in the early 90s?

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