Links 6/5/2022

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

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


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

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

* * *

Is Fishing With a Drone the Way of the Future? Smithsonian (Re Silc).

Pressure builds on riskiest corner of US junk bond market FT

Davos: The Left Didn’t Eat the Rich. The Rich Ate the Left Newsweek. A firebell in the night:

Granted, for some definition of “organized.” But, for example, the case for better ventilation, especially in the worlkplace, is science-based and as clear as day. Where’s Big Labor? The Squad? Sanders? Heck, Warren….

68th Bilderberg Meeting to take place 2 – 5 June 2022 in Washington, D.C., USA Bilderberg Meetings. Includes the “key topics for discussion.” I like #11: “Post Pandemic Health.” “Post.” Really? List of participants. I certainly hope the (as yet unannounced) venue has proper ventilation.

Why Sheryl Sandberg Quit Facebook’s Meta WSJ


Let’s Not Pretend Planting Trees Is a Permanent Climate Solution NYT (Re Silc).


Overlapping, highly contagious COVID subvariants are spreading fast in Florida Sun-Sentinel. B.4 and B.5. Just in time for summer travel!

Mask rules are suddenly back in California as coronavirus hits danger zone Los Angeles Times. “Danger zone” means CDC’s “community levels” metric, which as readers know, kicks in too late to prevent community spread. Good luck, California!

* * *

Joint Effects of Socioeconomic Position, Race/Ethnicity, and Gender on COVID-19 Mortality among Working-Age Adults in the United States International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. From the Results: “The majority (68%, n = 46,966) of COVID-19 decedents were in a low [Social-Economic Position (SEP)], and only 12% (n = 8421) had a high SEP.” That’s not a bug. It’s a feature. (Education is used as a proxy for SEP. And of course: “Our results support the hypothesis that hazardous conditions of work were a primary driver of joint socioeconomic, gender, and racial/ethnic disparities in COVID-19 mortality.” Note that the Amazon organizers understood this immediately. Nobody on the putative left did, or if they did, they didn’t do anything about it.

SARS-CoV-2 Infection and Persistence Throughout the Human Body and Brain (video) NHS. Commentary:

* * *

Indoor Air Pollution in the Time of Coronavirus Eos (Sub-Boreal).

America still needs more COVID treatments Axios


A case of community spread:

The CDC is sending monkeypox vaccines to people at high risk in a race to prevent the spread CNBC

Two distinct monkeypox variants found in U.S., adding to outbreak’s mystery NBC. Commentary:


Resolutely stop the wind of formalism proof, and consolidate and deepen the reform results of ‘delegating power, delegating power, regulating services’ in epidemic prevention What China Reads. Original. Maybe a China hand in the readership can cut through the jargon; what I noticed is that Li Keqiang is quoted, not Xi; and that Shenzen did well (unlike the Shanghai debacle).

Unanswered phones, missed signals: fear of accidental US-China crisis grows South China Morning Post

China’s Pacific Ambitions Hit a Pothole Asia Sentinel

Admiral Hyman Rickover turns in his grave Bill Totten’s Weblog

A Major Science Journal Publisher Adds A Weird Notice To Every Paper. What’s Behind This? Forbes


Pakistan provides key support to boost Myanmar Air Force The Economic Times

Myanmar junta to carry out country’s first judicial executions in decades: spokesman Agence France Presse

Cambodians vote in local polls as revived opposition vies for seats France24


A long-dead Muslim emperor vexes India’s Hindu nationalists AP

Ramachandra Guha: Hindutva has strong links with fascism – but today’s leaders want to forget them


UK summer music festivals forced to close as cost of living crisis hits home Guardian

New Not-So-Cold War

Russia says Kyiv strikes destroyed tanks donated by West AP

Deadly secret: Electronic warfare shapes Russia-Ukraine war AP (dk). Hey, remember when phishing Podesta’s email was an “act of war”? Happy, innocent times.

What does “victory” in war look like? Thread:

* * *

Ukraine Accuses NATO’s Turkey Over Stolen Grain Before Lavrov Visit Newsweek. Well, that should help with Finland and Sweden’s NATO membership. Or perhaps Ukraine knows that’s already a lost cause?

Estonian coalition collapses after tension over ‘core values’ escalates FT

* * *

Russia to get $6.35 billion in extra oil and gas revenues in June, finance ministry says Reuters

Why China Threads the Needle on Ukraine Foreign Policy


Biden’s Israel, Saudi Arabia Visits Postponed to July Haaretz

Biden Administration

Roe v. Wade and Republican Haterade Jesse Ventura’s Die First Then Quit

Justice Department declines to prosecute former Trump chief of staff and deputy NBC vs. Subpoena wars: Washington is on a path to mutually assured destruction Jonathan Turley, The Hill

Abbott restarts baby formula plant linked to contamination ABC

Capitol Seizure

House Jan. 6 committee announces first hearing will be held in primetime NBC. I’m going to have to work out how to watch this without stroking out. Could be Watergate, could be Benghazi, could be a nrew and original way for Democrats to screw things up.

Supply Chain

Southern California ports rank dead last on global efficiency index and White House taps retired general to be new port czar American Shipper

Mining Companies Strike Gold by Destroying Public Lands In These Times

The Bezzle

FTC reports $329 million lost to crypto scams in Q1 2022 Web3 Is Going Great. I can’t understand how. Crypto is simplicity itself:


PBM practices are keeping consumers from generics savings, white paper finds Healthare Dive

Former Wisconsin judge killed in ‘targeted’ attack; suspect had hit list that included Mitch McConnell, Gov. Whitmer NBC

Police State Watch

Lawsuit: In botched drug case, Minneapolis police fabricated informant and evidence Star-Tribune. From Greg Doucette’s enormous “Cops lying is common” permathread:

The Body Of Christ Betrayed: Reflections On Sexual Abuse In The SBC The Roys Report

Class Warfare

“They’ve Got To P*e On It”: A VFX Supervisor Explains Why Their Job Is So Tricky Defector. Post-production in Hollywood.

Union-busting at Planned Parenthood:

The aliens are all hanging out on Dyson spheres circling white dwarfs, physicist argues Live Science

There’s a lot of stuff it’s hard to unsee just now:

When slats face due south, there’s pretty much always shade (except at high noon).

Antidote du jour (via):

Bonus antidote (KatieBird):

Works best with the sound up, so you can react along with the cat.

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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About Lambert Strether

Readers, I have had a correspondent characterize my views as realistic cynical. Let me briefly explain them. I believe in universal programs that provide concrete material benefits, especially to the working class. Medicare for All is the prime example, but tuition-free college and a Post Office Bank also fall under this heading. So do a Jobs Guarantee and a Debt Jubilee. Clearly, neither liberal Democrats nor conservative Republicans can deliver on such programs, because the two are different flavors of neoliberalism (“Because markets”). I don’t much care about the “ism” that delivers the benefits, although whichever one does have to put common humanity first, as opposed to markets. Could be a second FDR saving capitalism, democratic socialism leashing and collaring it, or communism razing it. I don’t much care, as long as the benefits are delivered. To me, the key issue — and this is why Medicare for All is always first with me — is the tens of thousands of excess “deaths from despair,” as described by the Case-Deaton study, and other recent studies. That enormous body count makes Medicare for All, at the very least, a moral and strategic imperative. And that level of suffering and organic damage makes the concerns of identity politics — even the worthy fight to help the refugees Bush, Obama, and Clinton’s wars created — bright shiny objects by comparison. Hence my frustration with the news flow — currently in my view the swirling intersection of two, separate Shock Doctrine campaigns, one by the Administration, and the other by out-of-power liberals and their allies in the State and in the press — a news flow that constantly forces me to focus on matters that I regard as of secondary importance to the excess deaths. What kind of political economy is it that halts or even reverses the increases in life expectancy that civilized societies have achieved? I am also very hopeful that the continuing destruction of both party establishments will open the space for voices supporting programs similar to those I have listed; let’s call such voices “the left.” Volatility creates opportunity, especially if the Democrat establishment, which puts markets first and opposes all such programs, isn’t allowed to get back into the saddle. Eyes on the prize! I love the tactical level, and secretly love even the horse race, since I’ve been blogging about it daily for fourteen years, but everything I write has this perspective at the back of it.


  1. Steve H.

    > Roe v. Wade and Republican Haterade Jesse Ventura’s Die First Then Quit


    He was Governor Ventura.

    1. jefemt

      I was just thinking… if a nuclear sub physicist Peanut Farmer, a Party flip-floppin B grade actor, a mendacious grifting perpetually failing rolling-bankruptcy paper-billionaire, a dottering octegenarian decades-tenured former Senator with dirty nails on all 20 phalanges, a silver tongued non-delivering promise-slinging opportunist bi-racial Junior Senator —if these folks can be President, why not a former pro wrestler?

      Great Essay- once again, if it were not for the wide-ranging keen eyes that feed this news / finance / political economy aggregator, I would never have seen the essay from Jesse and kin.

      Thank you!

      1. dougie

        I read this article and forwarded it to several close friends before I realized who wrote it. I thought about it for a minute, and realized although I may not get to select the messenger of the truth, I would be a fool to ignore him. He would get my vote based solely on this article.

        Besides, I once asked my wife of now 33 years if she wanted to go see a “travelling improvisational theater group” on our first date. Took her to a ‘rassling match, to see if she had a sense of humor!

      2. Dr. John Carpenter

        Unfortunately for him, he wouldn’t be the first WWE Hall of Fame member to be president.

    2. GramSci

      I was disappointed the Green Party rejected him as a potential candidate in favor of Who-he Hawkins. I especially like that Ventura advocates for a maximum wage.

      1. artemis

        Ventura did not seek Green Party nomination, and when approached said he wouldn’t run. Some state parties wanted to nominate him anyway, which was divisive. Picking a celebrity candidate who is not a party member over a hardworking party builder like Hawkins just for the charisma factor is hollow politics and bound to fail.

        1. GramSci

          No, he did not formally stand for the nomination because it became clear the Green Party apparatchiks would not support him.

          But how, exactly, did “Green Party Unity” succeed?

          1. Nikkikat

            Went to a couple of Green Party meetings in S. California. These people were a joke. Only thing they were interested in was socializing. Not serious at all. The Green Party is not going to do anything. They want to whine but that’s about it.

          2. Alex Cox

            Jesse V was the head of the Ross Perot People’s Party. When Perot dropped out, Ventura asked Donald Trump to be the presidential nominee, and Oprah to be the VP candidate. I forget how that worked out…

    3. Watt4Bob

      Cast my vote for Jesse as a protest, woke next morning he was Governor.

      I was very happy.

      The legislature stonewalled him like crazy but he had a bully pulpit and used it.

      24/7 truth from the mouth of a politician.

      All-in-all, a good experience if I was asked.

    4. dk

      The byline is Jesse & Tyrel Ventura, pere et fils. From the generational cues I’m pretty sure Tyrel wrote the bulk of the piece.

      If you’re going to draft a presidential candidate from this, draft the younger one.

  2. LawnDart

    Putin just did Xi a solid, and has grabbed the US, Japan, Taiwan and our whole cohort of “unfriendlies” by the short-and-curlies.

    As noted by other NC commentator’s, Russia’s restrictions on gases goes far beyond what you heat your home with or what goes into the fuel tank.

    “Russia has decided to remind unfriendly countries of their import dependence. Now the Russian Ministry of Industry and Trade will determine who will have access to neon, krypton, helium, xenon-key and critically important gases for the production of semiconductors, more than 30% of which in the world market are accounted for in our country,” a source in the financial and economic block of the government told Izvestia.

    Wait, it gets better:

    In addition, our country now accounts for 80 percent of the market for sapphire substrates – thin plates made of artificial stone, which are used in opto-and microelectronics to build up layers of various materials, such as silicon. They are used in every processor.

    Even stronger is the Russian position in the special chemistry of etching microchips using ultra-pure components. Russia accounts for 100 percent of the world’s supply of rare earths used for this purpose.

    “Now we can expect that enterprises for the production of microchips and semiconductors will stop abroad, as they cannot do without this gas. Most likely, they will buy it in China, but at higher prices, 20-25 percent higher, ” industrial expert Leonid Khazanov warned in an interview with Zvezda TV channel.

    Perhaps someone more astute than I can discern the potential implications, the ramifications of this, one who might entertain my query, “Hey! Are we screwed or what?”

    Source: NewsFront, ” Limiting the export of inert gases will strengthen Russia’s position in the global microelectronics market ” 05.06.2022

  3. griffen

    Overnight shooting in Philadelphia. Welcome to America, 2022. Number one!

    Good grief, Charlie Brown.

    1. Tom Stone

      I wonder if increasing inequality, corruption and blatant and lavishly rewarded lawbreaking on the part of our overlords might have something to do with violence?
      A Million dead from Covid, $40 Billion sent to Ukraine when $20 Billion would end homelessness here in the USA…
      100 Million cases of Covid are predicted for this fall with 20% predicted to end up with Long Covid and nothing is being done to prepare for this disaster.
      Cops standing by when Children are being slaughtered.
      anger,depression and despair are rational responses to what many Americans face, add psychotropic drugs to treat said depression and despair and you get what we have.
      Want less violence?
      Restore the Rule of Law and create a more just and equitable society.

      1. digi_owl

        Stressors make anyone lash out, and with abundant access to point&bang weapons such lashing out becomes far more lethal.

      2. griffen

        To update the phrasing of John Adams, you know, “we are a nation of laws not men”…

        We’re a nation of laws unless you grab power & money, maybe even fame. Then you can purchase a verdict or pay enough to bury the truth. One can read many things about the nation and our Founding Fathers. For those who signed a Declaration of Independence in 1776, they faced treason against the British crown. And a likely death if the Revolution had failed.

        Our leadership today face no such charge or recriminations if they are wrong. Just a new lobbying gig on K Street. Oh, and rules are for the suckers.

        1. Laura in So Cal

          Per Karl Dennigers column on Memorial Day, 9/56 signers of the Declaration of Independence died in the revolution. 5 were captured and tortured as traitors, 2 had sons killed in the fighting, 12 had homes burned to the ground, 8 had property looted, and many suffered severe financial losses.

          1. griffen

            Thanks for the link, that is an interesting and thought provoking column. I do wish I had caught that this past weekend, appropriately so. I did enjoy my beer!

      3. drumlin woodchuckles

        How many of these shooters might be witting government operatives or unwitting government dupes sent out to fake the case for gun control? Isn’t the sudden rise of all these copycat shootings just now somewhat suspicious?

    2. Jason Boxman

      Right on South Street; I’ve wandered around there before, but not at night. I was usually up on Spruce instead. That whole area is relatively nice and I’d certainly not expect a mass shooting there, as someone that’s only visited Philly a few times. Maybe locals know more. I’d thought south of South Street was a danger zone. There’s a great used bookstore down that way as well.

      In America, mass shootings happen on days ending in -y.

    3. Mikel

      The Texas school shooting really brought what has never stopped as a practically daily happening back to the forefront of the news.
      27 school shootings have taken place so far this year
      Updated May 25, 202212:52 AM ET

      That’s just on school shootings.

      It seems like a minimum of 3 dead is what it takes to make national news on a shooting. But all of the other bits of trauma, violence, and injury add up as well.

    4. Sissy

      Those dare Icelanders are at it again!

      We don’t have a gun problem, we have a demographic and cultural problem.

      Taking guns away from non criminals will do as much to solve this as taking cars away from everyone to deter drunk driving.

  4. flora

    Speaking of Davos, aka the WEF:

    Krystal and Saagar with James Li on the WEF. utube, ~14 minutes.

    The TYRANNICAL Truth About the World Economic Forum | Breaking Points with Krystal and Saagar

    (Is this why Kamela kept repeating the word “together” in a recent speech? /;)

    1. The Historian

      I discovered James Li’s channel 51-49 a few months back and I am truly impressed with him. How did someone so young get so smart? Gives me much hope for our future generations!

  5. The Rev Kev

    “Russia hits Kyiv with missiles; Putin warns West on supplies”

    That article said that as part of that strike, a bunch of T-72 tanks that were supplied by Eastern European countries were also destroyed. Those Ukrainian tank crews should be grateful here as those T-72s are old and first came into service half a century ago. If they were any older, their ID plate number would have been stamped in Roman numerals.

    1. Jason Boxman

      So in all of this, I’d forgotten about Patriot missiles; Instead of a no-fly zone, I haven’t seen deploying these mentioned. It seems like a natural escalation for NATO as Russia continues to hit arms shipments in western Ukraine.

      But maybe it’s come up and I’ve missed it.

      Meanwhile, Ukraine’s General Staff said Russian forces fired five X-22 cruise missiles from the Caspian Sea toward Kyiv, and one was destroyed by air defenses. Four other missiles hit “infrastructure facilities,” but Ukraine said there were no casualties.

      Or they’re using some other anti-missile system.

    2. Flora

      President Putin, you could do the whole world a solid by aiming one of your precision, non-nuclear, missiles at the Bilderberg gathering. Minimum needed so as not harm the staff, animals or trees.

      1. flora

        Whoever the above commentor “Flora” is, it is not me – flora – who has posted here for years. I did not write the above comment, nor would I ever write a comment like the one above.

  6. griffen

    Crypto and the FTC report showing how much has been lost. Within the article on the FTC site, there is a category summary of reported losses dating from January 2021 to March 2022.

    Romance related scams are the 2nd entry?!? Wow…just remarkable. It is a scammer’s afternoon delight.

    1. dougie

      One total dumbass (and that’s putting it mildly) that I know professionally bragged about using crypto “profits” to get into a YUGE ocean front McMansion on the Outer Banks of NC. It went back on the market last week. It may be the sweetest “I told you so” that I will ever utter. I am going to wait and deliver it in person, because I am that type of guy. I want to see the look on his face. Effing moron!

      1. Mildred Montana

        Gore Vidal, always reliably mordant, called “I told you so” the four most beautiful words in the English language.

        1. drumlin woodchuckles

          I have long considered the four most beautiful words in the English language to be . . . ” We don’t supply that.”

      2. playon

        I suppose he was underwater on his mortgage, but since the place was on the outer banks of the NC coast it will likely be underwater for real in a few more years…

    2. Zephyrum

      The Managing Web3 Wallets chart advises to use “trustworthy sites” for your cold wallet. Pretty ironic considering the whole point of Web3 is zero trust.

  7. kriptid

    Amazon spokesperson accidentally forwards e-mail meant for consultants to journalist at Politico which details an effort from Amazon to use social justice tropes to fight regulation:

    Amazon this week gave marching orders to one of its consultants: Push hard on the narrative that legislation to rein in Amazon’s power will harm communities of color.

    In an email exchange mistakenly forwarded to POLITICO, Amazon spokesperson Julia Lawless asked a consultant with FTI Consulting to press media outlets to report on a letter from a minority group criticizing the American Choice and Innovation Online Act, S. 2992 (117), a bill moving through Congress that would block the largest tech companies from giving preference to their own products over their competitors.

    “Would it be possible for you all to push this with some of the newsletters — Politico tech, Politico Health, etc to underscore continued concern from a broad cross section of groups, including communities of color?” Lawless wrote.

    Corporations need unfettered power and control, or else what cruel fate may befall those poor souls that populate the community of color?

  8. The Rev Kev

    “Admiral Hyman Rickover turns in his grave”

    This article never makes clear the Hyman Rickover connection. Back in the day, Rickover, through personal experiences, rated the education of a nation as a matter of national security – so important was it. He believed that US standards of education were unacceptably low and wrote books and reports comparing the US education system with that of Russia and Switzerland as examples. He did not tolerate fools gladly and I can only imagine his thoughts on the present financialization of US education-

    1. Bart Hansen

      Thanks, Rev, I stopped reading after several paragraphs with no mention of Rickover.

    2. MT_Wild

      My dad was in the Navy on subs when Rickover was in charge. Rickover personally interviewed every man that served in the submarine fleet at the time. His first question to my dad was something along the lines of “tell me why the hell I should allow you to get on one of my boats”.

      My dad was not one to be impressed with anyone, but said that Rickover was the real deal.

  9. Basil Pesto

    > Cops lying is common

    On that, one last recommend for ‘We Own This City’, dramatisation of Baltimore’s ‘Gun Trace Task Force’ corruption scandal. Pretty good.

    1. CanCyn

      We are just watching it now. 2 episodes to go. The scandal is unknown to me so I do not know how it ends. I am not holding my breath that the consequences, if any, go high enough up the food chain. The Baltimore courts’ having difficulty finding jurors because so many claim they won’t be able to believe a police officer’s testimony is interesting. Seems that the people knew exactly what was going on.

    2. Mildred Montana

      Uvalde tragedy.

      Only hours later the cops were already lying, saying the shooter was “confronted” or “engaged” before the shootings with no explanation of what those words meant. In any event, the shooter went on shooting, with no injured or dead cops left behind him. Seems those words meant nothing, they were just made up for the media and the public.

    3. BrianH

      My wife sat on a federal jury for the trial of one of these Gun Trace Task Force goons. Her take was that these cops, even putting aside the charges and evidence, were absolutely repulsive. Their enormous egos, married with their lack of morals and humanity, made them monstrous. And their actions were violent and twisted, wreaking havoc across a struggling Baltimore community. They took it to the next level, inspirational and decorated leaders of a generally corrupt police force and city government.

  10. Abby


    World has 10 weeks worth of grain stored. Biden’s sanctions on Russian bumper crop, and Ukraine war, with ports mined there to stop Russian navy, mean that what there is can’t get shipped to U.S. or rest of the West.

    You have to eat anyway. If you stock up, you’ll be making a very nice return on your money as the prices are shooting up and supplies might not be on shelves in a while.

    Americans now are getting a mild taste of what it’s like to be an Iraqi, Iranian or Venezuelan.

    1. The Rev Kev

      Well they could ship all that wheat through Belarus. But that would mean removing the sanctions off that country so of course they can’t do that.

  11. Lex

    It appears that Post deleted his tweet. The lack of clarity in analysis on Ukraine is something. I can kind of understand it before and early in the conflict. But the unwillingness to accept facts on the ground 100 days in can only be described as willful ignorance.

    Russia is only “isolated” from the “west” which needs Russia more than Russia needs it. It looks more like the west has isolated itself from the majority of the planet and is on the fast track to pariah status rather than Russia. But even if that’s not the case, Russians will have enough to eat, electricity and heat. None of these things are guaranteed for Europeans and Americans anymore. At least not a price anyone can afford.

    No doubt Russia has lost material, but with an operational military industry, that’s temporary. Russia is not losing manpower at a significant rate. The doomers of Russian social media would be talking about incessantly. Most losses at this point are being taken by DPR and LPR militias. Apparently US analysis is incapable of recognizing patience?

    It is hardly data-evidence, but the anecdotes are starting to add up. Europeans are getting tired of Ukrainian refugees; Europeans are getting frightened by the reality of their situation (they should be more frightened); the actual rest of the world is lining up more behind Russia than the west. You can’t eat dollars, though I guess you could burn them for heat. Things could change but the current trajectory looms more like the west will suffer immensely and any recovery will require a degree of political will and realism we may not be capable of initiating. We’ve still got 2.5 years of Biden, who – judging by that speech on the economy – is completely divorced from reality.

    I’ve started counting cars on the road that get more than 20-25 mpg. It’s not a number favorable to $5.00/gal gas, nor is there any realistic transition away from them. (My truck is no better, but I don’t pay for it or the gas it needs.)

      1. Ghost in the Machine

        Oracle to Croesus: “If Croesus goes to war he will destroy a great empire.”

        The US state department should read more classics.

    1. Tom Stone

      Make that $7.00 per Gallon at a Shell station in Santa Rosa CA, $6.30 per gallon at Costco.
      Costco was out of Regular gas at 9:15 AM on a Friday.
      A large part of the local economy is based on tourism and low paid local labor, pay starts here at $15-$18 an hour and these are almost all 30 hours a week jobs with no benefits.
      Barely enough to rent a room in an OK neighborhood, section 8 pays up to $1,700 per month for a one bedroom…
      If you are driving an older and less fuel efficient car it can get very tight financially with gas above $6.00.
      There are plenty of public facing low wage part time jobs available for some reason.

      1. tegnost

        yep, $7 and going up from there…until demand destruction hits…but there is substitution available, airfares are low, my sister roundtripped to maui for $300 so if you don’t want to drive and pay tons of money, you can get in a covid tube for cheap.

        1. Henry Moon Pie

          I appreciated the shoutout re: being an accelerationist yesterday, but in the interest of equal time, I wanted to quote from advocates for a more laid back, wu wei approach:

          Mr. Nixon, I ain’t a-fixin’
          To speak Spanish on a plane or polish off the Liberty Bell.
          I just wanna sit here on the shelf
          And watch you finish off the place by yourself.
          Please let me do what I wanna:
          Just lay around the house and smoke marijuana.

          “Oh, Mommy (I Ain’t No Commie)” Brewer & Shipley

        2. chuck roast

          Very quiet weekend here in the city by the sea. Saturday and Sunday in June without bumper to bumper and level of service F intersections. Strange. I’m guessing that many would rather not drop $50 to gas-up and fight their way here to buy an ice cream cone. A small 10% drop in traffic volume can have a significant impact on congestion.

      2. Thistlebreath

        Looking ahead: here in Los Angeles County, I went to fuel our horse haulin’ diesel pickup, two tanks @ 14 gal/tank. The pump cut me off at $125. Not full. Glad I wasn’t starting a long trip. Maybe time to finally install that cross-bed transfer tank.

        1. Anthony G Stegman

          Perhaps it’s time that you changed your lifestyle. Instead of hauling horses around keep them in the stable. Better yet, sell the horses along with the big diesel truck.

          1. The Rev Kev

            But if industrial civilization collapses because of our dependency on oil, he will still be able to ride around on those horses.

            1. Wukchumni

              I needed vittles & such and hitched 236 horses to my wagon almost simultaneously screaming Giddyup! as I turned the key in the ignition and off I went about 40 miles into Visalia in less than an hour’s time, did some shopping and had lunch and then made it back home in about the same time as it took me to get there.

              Walking, it would take me about 5-6 days roundtrip and i’d of course have to take a backpack with me, and the most I could carry home would be on the order of say 30-35 pounds of food and 15 pounds of backpack & gear.

              If I had a horse, it would become fatigued after about 25 miles and would have to rest, and what would I do for forage?

              1. jonboinAR

                Yep, in simpler times, no one lived where you live, probably. Goes for most of us. Don’t know what we’ll do if times become… simple. The horse may get eaten come the first winter. After that, the dog. Then what?

            2. ambrit

              Does he have any plow horses? I know how “tempermental” riding horses can be. Better yet, some Shire Horses or Percherons to both pull the plow and carry him and his armour into battle.

    2. GramSci

      The Twit told me that the post “has been deleted”. It did not say “deleted by the author”.

    3. drumlin woodchuckles

      If the EUro governments want to end the pressure behind this war, they can declare that Ukraine will never ever be permitted into NATO. That will set Zelensky free to negotiate about where the new border will be and so forth without having to fear being assassinated by his Nazis for “giving away” Ukraine’s future NATO membership. Didn’t I read a couple of months ago where he was hoping the EU leaderships would say “no NATO membership ever for Ukraine” so he wouldn’t have to be the one to take the blame for saying it?

      And the EUro leadership would not say it. And because the EUro leadership itself wants to keep the war going for months or years, the EUro leadership will not say it now. Or ever in the future.

      Because of that refusal, this is also very much EUrope’s war of choice. So let EUrope suffer along with everyone else

  12. Louis Fyne

    Re. Rich ate the Left….

    Pick a national, established “Left” / “progressive” non-profit, like PETA or NRDC.

    Odds are that the CEO makes much more pay than Joe Biden.

    It is a mutually beneficial relationship…many 1%ers discovered that it is fun LARPing as a progressive and disarms class consciousness; while others say that path to riches is mobilizing the outrage of progressice causes

    1. Juneau

      I understand assuming PETA pays their people well, but the reports are that admin staff make well under 100k (including Ingrid Newkirk). The most expensive staff are attorneys as they pursue legal channels to achieve their aims. I read a book years ago by one of their activists confirming their pay is actually quite low for many employees. However you feel about them just wanted to clarify, not trying to derail the convo.

      1. Verifyfirst

        I’m no expert, just glanced at Charity Navigator:

        PETA is only rated as a two star charity there, I’m not going to spend the time to figure out why (there was a time long ago when I studied CN’s prior methodology).

        Salaries of PETA leadership reported there look to be between $100K and $125K, rough numbers. Newkirk is shown as $23K, so maybe a partial year, or maybe she doesn’t need a salary.

        Planned Parenthood national CEO shows as $900K plus annual pay. National ACLU looks to be in the $350K to $550K range for leadership. Randi Weingarten at AFT was at $600K/year, if recollection is correct.

        It goes on and on, the list of “cause” multi-millionaires (multi since most seem entrenched, so year after year they get this money and benefits)

    2. digi_owl

      and disarms class consciousness

      Basically by deflecting it by pushing race and gender above class.

      Invariably you see this, at least online, where leftist though starts percolating. Sooner or later some newcomer will show up and screech incessantly about how some gender, race, or incredible narrow combo of the two has to get priority ahead of the wider class issue being discussed.

      And you know that if they get told off, that response will be all over social media, and perhaps even mainstream media if the movement was getting large enough to case concern, within a day or two.

    3. Mikel

      If you look at total compensation and not wages, I’m sure Biden’s income is right up there.

  13. SocalJimObjects

    I am going to take a first stab at unpacking the title of that article from What China Reads.

    So from the original article, we have the following: 狠刹形式主义证明之风,在防疫中巩固深化“放管服”改革成果 (emphasis is mine). Li Keqiang actually gave a speech on this very topic “放管服”改革 sometime back in 2016, and the Chinese media was even nice enough to provide an English article: The literal translation of 形式主义证明 is formal proof(s) such as ones found in logic and mathematics.

    Taking the epidemic into context, that title basically says that the government (local, provincial, etc) should stop relying purely on formal documentation (often paper ones just like the vaccination cards that Americans get) to regulate people’s day to day life during the pandemic. Instead government bodies should build and improve upon the ideas and concrete results from Li Keqiang’s initiative, which was to streamline and optimize government services. TL;DR use more technology including data sharing to provide better services to the people.

    By the way I am not a China hand by any means, I am just a student of the Chinese language ;)

  14. Lex

    If you grow grapes on the pergola the orientation doesn’t matter! I’m over the top on such things and only let contractors do what doesn’t really matter. Because I’m the kind of guy who built my front porch with sliding dovetails, fully captured balusters and only a handful of screws. Sliding half-tails that required 45’ connections at the post was an adventure and all of it completely ignored local building code. But it’s a cool porch.

    1. Amfortas the hippie

      various climbing squashes work, too…i like trombocino zukes and spaghetti squash for this….but the delicatas and kushaw and even smaller melons work well for this,too.

      annual…end themselves in late july(here, altho i’ve managed to keep the former going and producing well into september)
      and i’m growing wisteria over the pergola over the cowboy pool.

      otherwise…this is what i’ve been distracting myself with this morning(i administered my first dose of morphine):

      i think i’m more on the wallerstein/veblen/harvey axis in this…more of a both/and, than an either/or.
      yes, it’s predatory, and not necessarily productive…still contains capitalism -and-feudalism…but has evolved into something else that we don’t have a name for yet…nor a narrative framework.
      add in the church universal aspect, and it gets really weird.

      1. jr

        Watch that wisteria! It will destroy woodwork, send runners and colonies across your property, choke other plants, and lull you into complacency with it’s gorgeous flowers. I’ve seen it push rain gutters out of their moorings and lift a roof up while sending roots into the walls. It’s not a plant, it’s an invasion!

        1. Amfortas the hippie

          like bamboo, it can be limited by lack of water.
          shrink the nutrient gradient into a tight circle.
          same with the hated trumpet vine.
          latter was horrible when we were at wifes grandma’s house in town…but one i planted here(long before i knew its true sith nature) stays right where it is…and from its perspective, it lives in a tiny oasis in a vast desert.

          1. jr

            Thanks, that is fascinating! I had to deal with a wisteria invasion years ago and it was like playing whack-a-mole, dig one root ball up and a week later shoots appear 10 feet away. I have a great deal of respect for that plant.

      2. ambrit

        You’r wife is being given morphine? That’s seriously barbaric, especially considering her condition. Civilized countries give people in conditions like hers heroin. It provides a much better ‘quality’ of life for the patient.
        Damn. I do feel for you both. Stay safe!

        1. Amfortas the hippie

          just the once, so far…in extremis…and only 1mg.
          dilaudid every 4 hours, plus a muscle relaxer and a bunch of other non-pain related things.
          she’s in pretty bad shape.
          i haven’t slept for more than 4 hours in a month…save for that one night my brother gave me.
          local priest has been in quarantine since he got back from Rome(!)…he’ll come wednesday to do his thing.
          the Big Event could be tonight…or another month.
          the limbo…poised on the edge like this…that’s the hardest part.
          we’ve both accepted the reality of the situation…and she still gets lucid enough to talk about big things.
          especially with the boys.
          this is, by far, the hardest thing i’ve ever done.
          y’all’s prayers and such are most welcome.

          …and that 1 mg of morphine, absorbed through the lining of the mouth, worked like a dream…and fast.
          and she was actually more lucid on that, than on the dilaudid.

          1. eg

            “There is special providence in the fall of sparrow. If it be now, ’tis not to come; if it be not to come, it will be now; if it be not now, yet it will come. The readiness is all.”

            Peace to you and your family, Amfortas

            1. DJG, Reality Czar

              eg: Thanks for this. Indeed we do have words to express our condition and our grief.

              The Tempest:
              Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve,
              And, like this insubstantial pageant faded,
              Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff
              As dreams are made on; and our little life
              Is rounded with a sleep.

              Amfortas the Hippie: Solidarity. Let us know what you need. This is on your terms, and we are here to offer what little support we can give you.

          2. Janie

            Words are so inadequate to express sorrow and sympathy for you and your family. I think of the Rainbow Bridge that we recite for our pets. It’s trite, but somehow I return to it.

          3. jonboinAR

            I’m very sorry. Peace be with you and yours, especially with your wife in these waning hours.

          4. Michael Fiorillo

            Having lost my dearly beloved (non-smoking) wife to lung cancer, I empathize and admire your courage and devotion, Amfortas. Peace and comfort to you, your wife and family.

  15. The Rev Kev

    “Russia to get $6.35 billion in extra oil and gas revenues in June, finance ministry says”

    Might be more that that To meet budgetary needs, the Russians need oil at about $45 a barrel and what was it the other day? About $120 a barrel? So Russia is sending huge amounts of oil to India for a deeply discounted price which still keeps the Russians happy. The Indians take that oil, puts it through their refineries to remove all “Russianess” out of it, and then sells it to the EU at a marked up price. Of course Putin and Modi are laughing their a**** off, the EU gets their “non-Russian” oil and it is only the plebs that are left with the problem of paying for this much more expensive fuel but nobody cares about them so who cares?

    1. Dftbs

      I think the notion of “discount” is widely misunderstood with regards to Russian oil pricing. The Russians are selling oil to the Indians at their producer determined clearing price. India then sells that oil at a premium to the EU.

      The belief that Russia is selling at a discount is an epistemological mistake arising from the illusion that Western exchange pricing is the “market price”. I would contend that having disconnected themselves from the second largest producer of oil, the Western exchange price isn’t the market price but rather a heavily distorted price with a steep regulatory premium.

      The comedy of the situation is that as you noted, it’s very easy for Russian producers to access the upward delta of these market price distortions by utilizing intermediaries such as Indian refiners.

      Forgive me if I seem to nitpick a semantical point. But I do think it’s important for us in the West to have a “copernican” restructuring of our place in the world. The more we acknowledge this reality, the better we’ll be at diagnosing our problems.

      1. ambrit

        That “Copernican” self image ‘restructuring’ will be slow to happen. Remember what happened to Galileo, much less Bruno in the original ‘Copernican’ “restructuring event?”

        1. Kouros

          Yeah, but this time, Copernicus has a big army and thousands of nukes and all the resources it needs for autarky while “the pope” , as Stalin questioned, can’t show his divisions…

  16. Carolinian

    Turley in the Hill

    Despite years of bitter political divisions, the two parties have long avoided using subpoenas against each other. It was viewed as a step toward mutually assured destruction if House members unleashed inherent investigatory powers on each other. House Democratic leaders, however, shattered that long tradition of restraint despite the fact that they may gain little from the effort. What they will lose is a long-standing detente on the use of subpoenas against colleagues — and they are creating a new precedent for such internal subpoenas just months before they could find themselves in the minority. Today’s hunters then could become the hunted, if Republicans claim the same license after November’s elections.

    There’s tradition and then there’s the need to not talk about $6 gasoline (already with us in CA). Similarly the Jesse Ventura column misses the mark by calling the Republican attack on Roe a “haterade” when it’s really just cynical distraction. Red meat to distract from no meat. Surely it’s way too late to be talking about “common sense” when it comes to our US Congress. Palmerston said countries have only “interests.” Politicians too.

    1. flora

      Banana republic here we come. This isn’t Watergate, not even close. “…first time as tragedy, second time as farce.” / oy.

    2. marym

      Republican leadership rejected a bipartisan agreement for a committee with more limited subpoena power subject to approval of the minority, then refused to testify voluntarily.

      Turley’s concerned with House on House subpoenas, but it’s not as though Republicans have participated in a “long tradition of restraint” in other subpoenas and requests for testimony in all their investigations of Democrats through the years; and then they refused to testify voluntarily in this investigation.

      1. flora

        Saying Dems are wrong/acting in bad faith on this point is not to say Repubs are right/ acting in good faith, imo. (What I wouldn’t give for a Dem like Dem Texas Representative Barbara Jordan who, back then, was on the House Judiciary Committee during the Nixon impeachment inquiry. sigh…)

        Now, both parties seem to use their serious powers in a debased, tit-for-tat, playground grudge match. (see also: the Clinton impeachment a la the GOP.) My 2 cents. / oy.

        1. Amfortas the hippie

          aye! Barbara Jordan.
          actually met her as a kid at the exurbian houston library satellite i haunted…she was there for some panel or something, and she stopped me in the foyer to ask why i had philosophy books,lol.
          of course, being 10-12, i didn’t know who she was til mom told me in the parking lot.
          then, it was like the later “drive a vw van, see vw vans everywhere” phenomenon.
          ended up a model for my concept of how to do nuts and bolt politics, if i ever became a politician.
          (long before my disgust led to pork recipe books as political discourse)

    3. Glen

      Mutually assured destruction of our two political parties? You mean corporatism #1 and corporatism #2? Sounds good to me!

      I’ll also include a short notice to the DC Democratic elites that “want a strong GOP”:

      Nancy, I feel duty bound to warn you that the Republicans intend to lock you in jail and throw away the key when they win back Congress in 2022, and the White House in 2024, and no amount of posturing on your part is going to change that. This really is “the most important election of YOUR life, not mine, YOUR life” (as we have been endlessly told). And I am so completely tired of Democrats promising and never delivering ANYTHING, that I am NOT going to sit out the elections. I’m going to vote you all out.

      Now, I know I will be accused of “somethingism”, but what I’m desperate for is change, real change in our country. So, you have some time, make some changes.

    4. Samuel Conner

      > Today’s hunters then could become the hunted,

      Maybe, in the interests of getting JRB out of the way, they want to encourage revenge-seeking on the part of the Rs in Jan 2023 and beyond. “We won’t interfere with your investigation of the HB laptop”.

      While I think that while 2023 is likely to be a disagreeable year in the real world, in the DC media-sphere, it might be quite entertaining.

  17. lyman alpha blob

    RE: House Jan. 6 committee announces first hearing will be held in primetime

    Primetime for the big reveal, eh? Will it get better ratings that whatever’s on the QVC channel? Maybe if they hire Geraldo Rivera to preside over the hearings?

  18. The Rev Kev

    “America still needs more COVID treatments”

    No, it doesn’t. Not at all. To repeat a comment of mine from about two years ago, what the world needs is a sterilizing vaccine. You get that, then you have a chance of stomping this pandemic down for good. Are they working on a sterilizing vaccine in the west? I wouldn’t bet on it. Where is the financial incentive to do so? It would be hilarious if China announced that they had developed one and were intending on distributing it for free to any country that wished it. Can you imagine the reaction of some advanced countries to this news?

    1. JustTheFacts

      Yes, this.

      From what I’ve read, Sputnik is pretty good. All cause mortality is lower with Adenovirus vaccines (J&J, Astrazeneca & Sputnik) than with mRNA vaccines (Pfizer/Moderna) according to a Danish paper I read. Sputnik uses 2 different adenovirusses, for its 2 doses, so that if your body already recognizes one (and therefore destroys it before it delivers its payload), you’ll at least get some protection from the other. So Gamaleya Labs who made it is another candidate for making a sterilizing vaccine.

      Given the West’s sanctions, and its oft proclaimed dismissive belief that Russia is “just a gas station”, one wonders how many heads would explode if this were to happen. They’d probably just censor the news though.

      1. Mikel

        Some countries will be getting shipments of the nasal spray vax’s…
        There are a couple of different kinds out there to see what is more effective.
        What I don’t like…some recommend not to give these to people over 50.
        Looks like they are going to try to stick over 50 people with the gene therapy, non-sterilizing shots.

        If these rat’s intentions never made you worry before…

      2. anon in so cal

        In Sept 2021, the U.S. and the WHO banned entry to the US of travelers vaccinated with Russia’s Sputnik.

        A “single dose of Sputnik reduced symptomatic infections by 78.6%, hospitalizations by 87.6%, deaths by 84.7%.”

    2. playon

      As someone who is continuing to have COVID symptoms after 7 weeks, I can say that treatments would be useful and welcome.

      1. Basil Pesto

        yeah, like, treatments are now extremely important for many, many people (except in China lol). I mean, they have been for a long while now, hence the hope (and overpromising) regarding Ivermectin and others. People are desperate for hope of that sort, I think.

        Also, it’s been reported extensively that western and eastern countries alike are working on intranasal vaccines that will hopefully have a longer sterilising effect over a broader range of variants than any of the current intramuscular vaccines. For example Akiko Iwasaki’s ‘Prime & Spike’ team. And many others.

        There are further two issues:

        1) R&D funding for these has now fallen off a cliff after last year’s ‘Mission Accomplished’ moment and the winding up of OWS, and with inflation being what it is and the usual suspects exclusively and successfully blaming it on government spending, unless we can pretend such research endeavours are actually missiles for Ukraine, meaningful public funding is probably a non-starter.

        2) How will such vaccines be used? GM has pointed out that the mRNA et al intramusculars had the potential to help with elimination as they helped bring transmission down with earlier variants for a shirt period, but instead they were used as a rationalisation for “living with” the virus which is an absolute reversal of how vaccines have been historically used (flu vaccine excepted), and a betrayal of public health.

        Will successful intranasals be used in the same way, thereby kicking the can further down the road? (to say nothing of the parts of the world that will inevitably be undervaccinated in such a scenario) or will they be used as the impetus to kick start a serious, grown-up campaign of elimination?

        Given the way we’re handling monkeypox right now, which is now a potential pandemic threat, I’m sceptical it’ll be the latter.

      2. kareninca

        That sounds awful. What are the symptoms? Are you trying any alternative treatments?

  19. Michael Ismoe

    “… caught monkeypox …. at the gym.”

    Once again proving that indolence and sloth are beneficial to your health.

    1. griffen

      I call it the leisurely not lazy approach, and it suits me well. No reading the fine print on that $1 special one time members fee for Planets or Anytime as anything!

      Walking and hiking are fast becoming my go to anyway. Low impact exercise bike too. But no Peloton.

    2. digi_owl

      I got soured on gyms at an early age (too much competitive “lets see who can press/lift/whatever the most!!!”), and it seems i made the right choice.

      That said, when first reading that i found myself thinking that sweat is a bodily fluid…

      1. Amfortas the hippie

        yeoman farmerhood, man…gyms are for hooking up and either ego lifting or ego masochism, depending on the dad bod in question.

    3. Mikel

      Interest in how transmission is being reported.
      Now I wonder how similar the strain “caught at the gym” compares to the strain being reported as sexually transmitted.

      There are enough mutations on this virus now to make Omnicron look at it sideways.

  20. The Rev Kev

    “Is Fishing With a Drone the Way of the Future?”

    Not this way. It is giving the fish too much of a fair chance. How do I see it developing? Easy. So you will steer your drone over a likely spot, achieve some height, and then drop a primed hand-grenade into the water. Once it goes off, then any fish in the immediate area will float to the surface. You then deploy a net from your drone to swoop in and pick up any fish that you want to take and leave the rest for the sea-gulls. Those that catch the most fish wins! Of course after a coupla days there will no longer be any fish to be found but a least you managed to post all those triumphant images on social media showing everybody what you caught. And that is all that really counts, right?

    1. scott s.

      HI legislature passed a bill making drone fishing illegal; awaiting Gov’s signing (I don’t think it is on his veto list). How it gets enforced isn’t so clear.

    2. Chas

      A few months ago I was fishing beside an inlet to a bay at high tide. I wasn’t having much luck. A guy pulled in beside me but he didn’t have a fishing pole with him. He brought out a bucket and from it he pulled a casting net. He cast his net, waited about 30 second, then pulled it in. It was teaming with mullet, shrimp, spots and a bunch of other critters I couldn’t name, but he could. He picked out a few mullet and shrimp and threw the rest back. One more thing he did before he left was teach me how to cast a net. On the way home I stopped at a fishermen’s supply store and bought myself a small casting net.

  21. Roger Blakely

    RE: SARS-CoV-2 Infection and Persistence Throughout the Human Body and Brain

    There is some debate as to whether or not SARS-CoV-2 gets into the brain.

    My brain is fogged up. None of my organs functions perfectly. I live my life as normal. I’m just tired all of the time and suck as an employee.

    Every morning I track temperature and days. I’ve been running hot all week (1.5 degrees F). It has been 789 days since the original infection, 423 days since my tenth infection, and 120 days since my eleventh infection. I didn’t bother to track this current twelfth infection.

    1. JustTheFacts

      There are papers about the fact Spike protein destroys the brain’s myelin sheaths. Myelin sheaths are necessary for nerve impulses to travel through the brain at a reasonable speed. In mice, exercise helped restore myelin sheaths. Also there’s a compound in tea called theyophyline which seems to help. Good luck!

    2. chris

      My God. You’ve had a SARS2 infection 12 times?!?!? I am so deeply sorry we live in such a cannibalistic state. I hope you are doing better soon.

  22. griffen

    Sports desk commentary. Live television coverage of the men’s tennis single championship of the French Open. Nadal is playing for his record extending 22nd major title. I’m cheering the old guy!

    This is about the only tennis I watch lately.

    1. griffen

      Nadal is the winner today. Pretty dominant in the 3rd set too. Not sure if it translates but winner winner chicken dinner!

      1. super extra

        All three final matches Nadal played were insane in their own right! What a champ!

        1. Glen

          Wow, I have to admit, I’m an old timer so my tennis hero is Rod Laver, but Nadal is earning my complete RESPECT. I have never seen Nadal play in person, but the few time I was able to watch Laver (he was in team tennis by then), it was incredible. I would love to see Nadal in person.

          My competitive tennis ended a while ago, but I did play thru high school and college. I was never that good, but I met some people that were completely awesome.

  23. The Rev Kev

    Before it gets late, many thanks to KatieBird for sending in that clip of that cat watching a horror movie. It was hilarious.

      1. katiebird

        My sister shared it with me and I Loved it so much I had to pass it on. I’ll tell her it was appreciated here :)

  24. Joe Well

    Re: Walker Bragman

    There are two teams among US Left pundits right now: Team A has Greenwald/Taibbi/Aaron Maté and is totally hostile to the Democratic Party including Bernie, the Squad, etc. Team B is less coherent but it seems to have Walter Bragman and Nomiki Konst.

    The infuriating thing is that Team A are also staunch advocates of LER (let ‘er rip), which is also the official policy of the Democratic establishment they claim to despise. And of course, Team B wants to play ball with that Establishment despite them being a guiding force of LER.

    Do we really have politics in this country or is it all just a puppet show of the elites?

    PS Walter Bragman just retweeted Brianna Wu (barfing emoji). I am so sick of these pundits but where else can you get information on news?

    1. anon in so cal

      Bragman shilled for Biden, and Biden’s record was predictive of his actions since taking office.

      Nomiki is a neocon.

      Glenn Greenwald sums her up:

      “Who doesn’t love a McCarthyite fascist who explicitly advocates having Congress investigate her political enemies because she’s angry they criticized her online?”

    2. Basil Pesto

      it’s echo chambers all the way down I guess. Some of those people are at least – one hopes – smart enough to be able recognise in the future how stupid (not to mention journalistically negligent in what remains a pretty incredible story of institutional perfidy and incompetence) they have been when it becomes impossible for them to ignore (except for Greenwald who is probably too narcissistic). Part of it I suspect might be because it is a subject they don’t really understand and aren’t willing to (and, being independent contractors now, aren’t being paid to) do the work to come to terms with because they just want to get back to writing about what they have a good command of (even though a lot of that material – when it isn’t original reporting – is kinda boringly glib, to be honest). It’s that desire that I guess everyone has, to return to 2019 normal. Unfortunately in that respect most people seem to want to play pretend.

      The less charitable take, of course, is that there are limits to their putative concern for the working stiffs of the country/world (given the by now extensive research showing which group the rampant spread of the disease afflicts the most, ie not substack celebrities). Hopefully that’s not the case and it’s just a blindspot rather than cynicism on their part.

      One interesting observation is that members of the “Uhhh, guys” community are somewhat disparate: bland liberals, mumsnet types, Trots à la WSWS, renegade finance dudes committing “Covid is Bad Actually” apostasy that Zero Hedge wants nothing to do with, agnostics like me, generic progressives, the CCP lol. In this sense the opposition to Covid isn’t necessarily ideologically coherent.

    1. Mikel

      Yep, trillions pumped into exec compensation (always think in terms of compensation to see the true nature of this giant grift) and it’s “wages” causing inflation.

    2. hunkerdown

      Every working class person needs to know his face and refuse him every kind of service.

    3. griffen

      I do have a minor quibble with that one. Powell was on record during 2021, that full employment was a “new marker” for the Federal Reserve. And he was quoted on this point during a number of speeches during 2021. Jerome Powell is not a saint by any stretch. But he is not Greenspan, who embraced the wacky notion that markets can regulate themselves. No, Alan, no they can’t.

      Now if it was Larry Summers making the point, then yeah I can believe that. Summers doesn’t give a damn about the average hourly worker.

      I do think I would recall such a speech. I reserve the right to be wrong, as always. I do keep my TV turned onto CNBC during much of my week.

      1. griffen

        For greater and more in depth context, here is a long form transcript discussing inflation. And you know what is true is that moderating certain levers of the economy just might cause inflation in general terms to lessen. But whatever…at the end of the day the FED doesn’t really have much a hand in certain inputs such as the price of a WTI barrel of crude oil.

    4. JBird4049

      >>>The chairman of the US Federal Reserve, Jerome Powell, said his goal is “to get wages down.”

      Well, I guess the serfs are being deferential enough to their lords and ladies, which means that the ten dollar a gallon gas just north of me isn’t very important. Is the chairman trying to start a civil war? Or is he just a moron?

    5. Kurtismayfield

      Incredible asset inflation for decades.. not a problem. But once those pesky serfs get a taste of wage inflation.. it must be crushed.

  25. bassmule

    I went searching for a Musical Interlude. Looks like it’s been a while (trying to find an excuse for posting something definitely O/T). This is nine minutes and change of musician and educator Hal Galper, talking about playing music. It is the most profound discussion of performing music I’ve ever come across. I’m not going to quote the story about Dizzy Gillespie; he’ll tell it better than I can.

    Hal Galper’s Master Class — The Illusion Of An Instrument

    1. tegnost

      Thanks for this instructive clip…for myself when I’m off at work or walking and thinking about tunes I’m working on, I can come up with much more complex melodies in my head and I wonder why I can’t do it when I’m holding the instrument…this video will help with that…

  26. Mikel

    “68th Bilderberg Meeting to take place 2 – 5 June 2022 in Washington, D.C., USA Bilderberg Meetings. Includes the “key topics for discussion.” I like #11: “Post Pandemic Health.” “Post.” Really? List of participants. I certainly hope the (as yet unannounced) venue has proper ventilation.”

    I hope it doesn’t have ventilation, they wear no masks, and someone catches it on the way there – a loud talker that all of them want to meet.

  27. Pat

    On the January 6 circus airing in prime time, here are my predictions.
    Ratings will be anemic to awful. Only the usual suspects and media will give a damn.
    Nothing new will be revealed.
    There will be no spotlight on the crowd control failures or misinformation regarding casualties and fatalities.
    Every so-called revelation will be met with breathless excitement like someone had just found the cure for cancer in the middle and so-called left media, while everything will prove how bogus this is in media on the other side of spectrum.

    The Democrats will be astounded when the reaction from the majority of the public is “Screw this, do something about real problems. This is what’s important Gas Prices! Food Prices! Baby Formula! Dead kids! Healthcare!” After years of getting away with deflection by pointing at X and saying “they’re bad and the problem”, they will flounder. They won’t understand that too many people recognize that without massive damage and really dead or massively injured members of the Houses of Congress, January 6 was not an insurrection and all their revelations won’t change that about that day. Most also know if the Capital Police and other law enforcement groups charged with keeping order in DC had actually employed the usual crowd control measures, the protesters would never have made it to the Capitol building. So this is dithering and ignoring much bigger problems.

    Propaganda does work, so I could be proved wrong, but I think gas and food prices will clear the fog and redirect the focus.

    1. LawnDart

      If gas and food prices don’t, the rest of the goodies that come with a full-blown economic depression sure will!

    2. marym

      If they only investigate the riot, they don’t have a case that it was an insurrection, though some participants may have thought (imagined?) it was at the time. We’ll see if they address any of the substantial components of the larger project to nullify the election, in the proceedings that day, and in steps that led up to it (court cases, pressure on state election officials, the “fake elector” plan).

      I don’t think the riot was part of the larger project, though there’s some indication that Trump (maybe others) opportunistically thought the crowd would be useful.

      And of course since Democrats aren’t doing anything to curtail the larger project next time around, they don’t have a case that they’re to be taken any more seriously on this issue than any other where they whine a lot and then do nothing or make things worse.

      1. hunkerdown

        “Democracies” under the rule of law aren’t supposed to be interested in what’s inside people’s hearts. “Mens rea” is the closest they have any right to approach. When are the Parties going to register as churches and get out of government?

        1. marym

          Is this in reference to my comment that some participants may have thought they were part of an insurrection? If yes, to clarify, 10 or so have been indicted for seditious conspiracy and I think 3 have pleaded guilty. So it’s not Democrats deciding that. I personally think the riot for most of the participants was more a part of their temper tantrum about losing an election, rather than (if at all) a part of the nullification plan among the politicians. So far I don’t think there’s been public evidence or testimony for the latter connection.

      2. Pat

        If they do investigate the so-called larger project…
        Oh screw that, the so-called larger project has been a piece of the Republican agenda for over 20 years. It is part And parcel of voter suppression and Bush v. Gore. Not even with a biracial president and super majorities in both houses did the Democrats do anything to protect the right to vote and the right to have your vote counted and counted correctly. They don’t care. They don’t want that any more then the Republicans do. This is never going to be about that. This about them getting scared and is part of their continuous tantrum about Trump being elected the first time, and coming far closer to being reelected than they thought he would. Trump is not the only incredibly bad loser in this. This is trial three, and as big a loser as the first two.

    3. Henry Moon Pie

      All very true.

      I must admit that I heard something on Sunday Morning Propaganda today that did make my ears perk up. The Proud Boys are being accused of storing guns in hotel rooms. No surprise there, but the allegations include maps of DC with government administrative buildings highlighted. While hardly unique, that was how the Azov Battalion turned a misfiring color revolution into a successful coup. They forcefully occupied government buildings in Kiev and rendered them inoperable until Yanukovich resigned.

      So is a Maidan-style coup in our future? Doubtful since such a thing won’t be necessary after the D Party’s upcoming electoral suicides.

  28. Xihuitl

    Re: Former Wisconsin judge killed in ‘targeted’ attack; suspect had hit list that included Mitch McConnell, Gov. Whitmer NBC

    Interesting that the assassin had to carry around a list to remind himself who he wanted to kill.

    1. jr

      Yeah, I was wondering about that bit. Perhaps he had jotted it down with his groceries and chores. Totally not suspicious.

    2. Jen

      Well, what with long covid, brain fog and all that, I hear that writing things down in order to remember them is helpful.

      I’ll see myself out…

  29. Susan the other

    Love the Cat Watching the Horror Movie. When his flight instinct reached peak panic his eyes dilated to the max. But I never noticed before that cats eyes do not go from side to side like human eyes – the cat’s entire head turns. Aligning itself straight to the threat? Since cats are our ancient ancestors, I think we might have lost that skill.

    1. Mikel

      “Mask rules are suddenly back in California as coronavirus hits danger zone” Los Angeles Times.

      Yep. Workplace get together at a restuarant/bar on a Wednesday in Hollywood a couple of weeks ago. By Friday, the email was going out that attendees had been exposed. Someone had tested positive.

  30. Mikel

    “The CDC is sending monkeypox vaccines to people at high risk in a race to prevent the spread” CNBC

    “…The massive $119 million order of Jynneos jabs — which can be used to treat both the monkeypox virus and smallpox — was created by the biotechnology company Bavarian Nordic, according to Newsweek.

    In 2015, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration approved the use Jynneos as a vaccine for the rare virus….”

    2015. Before reports of now suspected mutations developing after 2015.

    Guess we’ll see how effective it is now?

    1. JBird4049

      >>>Guess we’ll see how effective it is now?

      What? You don’t Trust the Science™?

  31. jr

    An age of illusions:

    She did show her real face for whatever that’s worth but, still, this is so strange. I saw a bit of video of the hologram and it’s her about 50 years younger, hair still dark. Soon you will be able to take your virtual kids to see their holographic leaders, George Washington and Ron DeTrumpis standing shoulder to shoulder, in the Metaverse. A virtual Bill Gates will help the children with their homework and getting dressed for dinner. Then a wonderful meal of worm burgers and it’s off to the sleep-pods for the night.

  32. Jason Boxman

    The U.S. government also has a stockpile of more than 100 million doses of ACAM2000, made by Emergent BioSolutions, McQuiston told reporters last week. The U.S. had released 500 doses of Jynneos and 200 doses of ACAM2000 as of Tuesday, according to the CDC. The U.S. has also sent out 100 courses of the oral antiviral tecovirimat to the states, health officials said Friday.

    LOL! So we aren’t prepared for this at all; Hardly a surprise. And the doses of ACAM2000, which apparently has nasty side effects, is manufactured by the fraud that operates as a pharmaceutical manufacturer that’s been defrauding the government for years! Hooray!

    This is too awesome! The wheels are really coming off of the bus now. Hang on!

    Most monkeypox patients in the U.S. travelled internationally in the 21 days before symptom onset which suggests they picked up the virus outside the country, according to McQuiston. The CDC doesn’t believe monkeypox is spreading widely in the U.S right now but is closely monitoring the situation. The U.S. has conducted 120 tests so far for orthopoxvirus, the family that includes monkeypox.

    Oh, the Centers for Disease is on the case, eh? I feel safer already! So immediately the first question is whether their theory of transmission is correct, and we have no reason to trust the CDC on this. Perhaps they’ll recommend MonkeyPox parties?

  33. Ignacio

    RE: Is Fishing With a Drone the Way of the Future? Smithsonian (Re Silc).

    Submarine drones could be useful if they serve to increase selectivity in commercial fisheries, IMO. Regarding recreational fisheries, the more technological they become the more control will be needed on these too.
    The EU plans to use spy drones to watch fishermen and see if they comply with the landing obligation rules. Already trying them I believe.

    1. Amfortas the hippie

      the shit the Serious Catfish People around here use(not counting the methamphetimine) is too much for me.///complicated rod holders(i use a 3′ section of 1 1/2″ pvc when surf fishing)…line alarms…even lasers…for some reason,lol…
      give me a light fly rod, a pair of hemostats on a lanyard, and a few black woolybuggers.///and no “fishing attire”, thank you…i’ll happily wear the river(Fish Naked!)
      and if yer gonna release them, (tormenting fish for fun, rather than catching dinner—fish whisper to each other about the abductions) please obtain suitable wire cutters to lop off the barb on the hook.
      much less traumatic to the fish.
      (make sure your hands are wet when handling them, too.)
      Rule #2…don’t be a dick.

  34. jr

    Jimmy Dore on Biden’s hiking Medicare prices and sending the money to private insurers:

    Highest rate increase in Medicare’s history, an 8% increase. This is after a rate hike last year, mostly for an Alzheimer’s drug that it turns out doesn’t work. The privatization continues as well. This is to pay back the 47M$ the industry gave the Biden campaign.

    I’m convinced that the Democrats want to lose the next two elections. That is their intended goal. Then they can “resist”.

    1. flora

      Thanks for the link.
      About that controversial Alzheimer’s drug, from last summer 2021:

      FDA approved Alzheimer’s drug over internal objections

      FDA adviser resigns over approval of new Alzheimer’s drug

      Clinical trials of aducanumab were stopped in 2019 because they failed to show the drug was effective….

      The PCNS committee met in November and voted on several questions about evidence of the drug’s effectiveness.
      They voted against the suggestion the drug could help patients, and came down as uncertain on the question of whether the drug had any effects on the brain.

      drug submitted to FDA for approval
      FDA’s own advisory panel and external advisors said drug didn’t show evidence of effectiveness and recommended against approval.
      FDA approved drug anyway — a drug that costs $56,000 a year.
      Because the FDA approved it insurance costs were raised to cover the expected increase in expenses — for a drug that doesn’t work.
      Politicians and pharma and insurance cos make hay.

      It’s corruption turtles all the way down.

    2. Charger01

      This reminds me of an interview 5 or so years ago with Thomas Frank (Listen, Liberal) with Paul Jay or another journalist pondering why Democrats allowed the ACA exchanges (and Medicare rates?) to rise prior to the 2016 election. As a I recall, ” this was a totally self inflicted injury, no one required them to raise rates. Can you image Rahm Emmanuel letting that happen? Why would you do that?”
      You can sum up the Biden Presidency with that phrase, spoken in disbelief “why would you do that?”

      1. drumlin woodchuckles

        Reason #1: ” Because . . . . just, because.”

        Reason #2: ” Awwww, gee . . . . . do I gotta have a reason?”

        And for those who absolutely positively demand that there just simply has to be a reason, how about this one . . .

        The Bidenoids already knew/know they will lose the next election no matter what, so why not let the rates rise in hopes of getting a private sector reward after they leave office?

    3. drumlin woodchuckles

      Or maybe they already know they will lose anyway, so they give away the rate hike and more privatization now in return for more private sector payoffs and rewards later, when they leave the offices they lose.

      I wonder if this could be technically speaking reversed by legislation or rule-writing? If so, might a political party devoted to such legislative and rule-writing reversal eventually arise?

      If it did, the only way it could survive the culture-war sewage that its enemies would spray on it would be to go pre-emptively skinny-dipping in the sewage lagoon right at the start.

      ” We support Legal Abortion, Gay Marriage, New Deal Restoration and Free Trade Abolition.
      If you want the New Deal Restoration and the Free Trade Abolition, we will tell you right up front that you get Legal Gay Marriage and Legal Abortion along with that. How badly do you want New Deal Restoration and Free Trade Abolition?”

  35. jr

    Music from the court of Burgundy:

    This is a great channel. I’ve really become a fan of medieval and Renaissance music. There is something about it that is lost in the Classical period. Baroque and Romantic music seems arrogant at times while the earlier periods are more mystical and sublime. I guess the approach of Modernism?

    1. Amfortas the hippie

      thanks for that!
      i used to be a mozart and strauss brothers(etc) guy, when it came to classical music…but then i started really listening to Bach and Vivaldi on the whole farm speakers in the trees system…and i like baroque and romanticism.
      i really get in to Wagner, too…if i can listen to the whole thing at a time.
      but the obscure and largely forgotten …inputs…to all that high culture stuff is fascinating.
      florentine court music, etc.
      even Plainsong.
      this…finding all manner of strange and wonderful music…is one of the places where the Web lives up to its Ideals.
      i’ve turned rednecks on to Nusrit Ali Khan…enough to where i have heard them jamming “Mast Mast” in the parking lot of the frelling beer store.
      (ie: it’s in their playlist)

    2. britzklieg

      my first professional gig (a CETA artist-in-residence grant) was with an “early music” group, the “Broken Consort” and it’s a different world than the opera stage where I ended (understudying Nixon in Adam’s ‘Nixon in China’ at the Met).

      I sang mostly without vibrato and with a reinforced head voice extension that carried the tenor line despite my big boy act as a baritone later in life. Mystical and sublime, yes. Gesualdo’s quarter tones and Monteverdi’s recitativi, medieval hockets and plain chant. It’s a different world and hard to resist if one is in the right mind to hear it.

      Nice link!

  36. Rainlover

    Alexander Mercouris gives a shout out to NC in his latest video, toward the end of his discussion of the Ukraine situation. Apparently several western media reporters who visited Severodonetsk plus a British general have found morale declining in the Ukrainian troops.

    Loved the cat horror video as well. Thanks!

    1. JohnM_inMN

      I was just scanning to see if anyone had reported this. Shout out to NC starts @ 22:26.

  37. Jonathan Holland Becnel

    It is def the best movie of the year.

    And yeah it’s also Jingoistic Military War Porn.

    But I’ll take that over Woke SJW movies everytime!

    1. voteforno6

      I’m not sure what that means, but in my experience, it’s not so much what a movie is about, as it is how the movie is about it.

      1. Michael Fiorillo

        Does it have a profoundly unmindful homoerotic beach volleyball scene, as in the first one? If not, I ain’t interested.

  38. heresy101

    Elon Musk’s claim to fire the bottom 10% of workers is not enlightened capitalist leadership of a forward thinking one percenter. He is following in the footsteps of the cockroach that destroyed GE, Boeing, and a lot of America – Jack Welch. A Business Insider article covers his effect on those companies and his effect on the political outlook of the rust belt workers.

    “Welch also pioneered the “stack ranking system,” in which the bottom-performing 10% of employees were laid off each year, a practice he called the “Vitality Curve.” Companies such as Goldman Sachs still use that approach to keep staff “motivated”. “

  39. drumlin woodchuckles

    Well . . . if Pakistan supports harder the Tatmadaw Coup Regime air force, India will support harder the NUG rebels. If India supports the NUG rebels harder enough to matter, China will raise its support to Tatmadaw to deny India a win here.

    If the Myanmar Civil War becomes a 3-way proxy war between India, Pakistan and China, then the RussiaGov may have to decide what is more important . . . . good relations with India or supporting its kind of government in Myanmar. But only if the IndiaGov is rude enough to force the choice. Otherwise, Russia will certainly add its support to Pakistan and China against the NUG.

  40. Wukchumni

    Washington: Canadian gun sellers are running out of weapons after a surge in demand in the run-up to a proposed ban by Justin Trudeau.

    The prime minister announced plans for a freeze on handgun sales after a mass shooting in Uvalde, Texas in which 21 people, including 19 children, were killed.

    The bill, which still needs to pass through parliament, would outlaw buying, selling, transferring and importing short-barrelled firearms. Gun stores across Canada reported a rise in demand after the announcement. Some ran out of stock within days.

    In parts of the country, customers were lining up in the street, desperate to get a firearm before the ban.

    “Almost all stores are sold out, including me,” said Josko Kovic, owner of DoubleTap sports in Toronto.

    It is estimated that there are one million handguns in Canada, which has a population of 38 million. Laws are stricter than in the US, with owners required to have a firearms licence. Purchasers are also subject to background checks, which take at least 28 days.

  41. The Rev Kev

    Operation Pettiness continues apace. So Lavrov was flying to Serbia with a team for negotiations when Bulgaria, Montenegro and North Macedonia shut down their airspace to his plane. So whose bright idea was this? At least they didn’t try to force down his plane so that he could be arrested and extradited to the Ukraine as a war criminal-—zakharova-1096037750.html

    1. Late Introvert

      The Mean Girls of DC, how did they get that way?

      ht: Zappa’s “Mean Girls of London”

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