Links 8/16/2022

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.

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Excuse you! Pet owners share hilarious images of cats and dogs who won’t give them any privacy in the bathroom Daily Mail. I bet many will seem familiar. One of my former cats would do the shower rail drape as shown, plus walk on shower rail. Other cat liked getting inside shower when it was on (this was a tub-shower setup) on the far end of the tub. I think he liked the steam room effect.

The World’s Biggest Fungus Will Outlast Us All Atlantic (resilc)

Scientists Discover ‘Uncontaminated Extraterrestrial Materials’ In Ancient Asteroid Sample Vice (furzy). Horror movie music! Andromeda Strain warning! Of course, more likely just comet rock.

A Machine Can Now Do College-Level Math Inside Higher Ed (David L)

Robot Dog With RPG Strapped to Its Back Demoed at Russian Arms Fair Vice (furzy)

Yours truly has harvested broccoli. My father grew it in his backyard. Fresh cut broccoli is SO much better than what you get in stores.




Shanghai Covid: Ikea shoppers flee attempt to lock down store BBC



What Comes After the Coming Climate Anarchy? Time. Resilc: “More anarchy.”

The IRA and the four horsemen of the climate apocalypse CADTM (Micael T)

Forty metres above the forest, searching for smoke BBC

Colorado River cuts expected for Arizona, Nevada and Mexico Associated Press (David L)

LNG Exporter Downplays Emissions to Justify Expansion DeSmogBlog


China Surprise Data Could Spell R-e-c-e-s-s-i-o-n John Authers, Bloomberg

Why Beijing’s war games risk pushing Asean neighbours into the arms of the US South China Morning Post (furzy)

China Threatens The US Empire, Not The US Itself: Notes From The Edge Of The Narrative Matrix Caitlin Johnstone (Kevin W)

Hacker Leaks Mountain of Files From Inside Xinjiang Camps Vice (furzy). I’ve always been skeptical of defenses of the centers in Xinjiang.

In the grip of overlapping crises, Europe faces a leadership vacuum New Statesman (resilc)

Old Blighty

Number of EU citizens moving to UK plunges post-Brexit – report Guardian (Kevin W)

New Not-So-Cold War

Another huge blast rocks Crimea: Fireball erupts at ammunition depot days after explosions destroyed at least seven of Putin’s warplanes at military airport Daily Mail. As bad as this looks, this is a tactical loss. Not hard to see (assuming Ukraine sponsorship) this as in lieu of the promised-for-months August counteroffensive.

Explosions Hit Russian Ammunition Depot in Crimea Wall Street Journal. See also Ammunition detonation in northern Crimea continues — region’s head TASS. Notice lack of agency:

On August 16, near the village of Mayskoye, a fire broke out on the territory of the banked site for temporary storage of ammunition of one of the military units

Hard to see this second incident as an accident. Which means Russia needs to retaliate as promised..

Ukraine failed to mount counteroffensive – ex-Pentagon adviser RT

France supplies mines banned by Geneva Convention to Ukraine News Front

Ukraine. Military Summary And Analysis 15.08.2022 YouTube. Note starting at 9:50 the discussion of the successful shelling by Ukraine of a Wagner Group center in Popasna. Bad bad look. CEO visited, allowed press pix, one had location-identifying info. This is rank amateurism. But interesting speculation re role of UK intel services. But Alexander Mercouris points out how Ukraine is weakening further and “Russia is advancing on every possible front” in Donbass (starting at 14:30)

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Various Points On Ukraine And Media Moon of Alabama. Nice shout out to Lambert and NC!

‘Floundering, not drowning’: Russia’s economy is withstanding sanctions onslaught — for now CNBC

Details of EU Ban on Russian Coal and Fertilizers Jolts Ship Insurers Bloomberg

German Power Prices Hit Fresh Record as Gas Continues to Surge Bloomberg

Turkey is openly boasting that vehicle trade with Russia has surged as its exports to Russia hit an 8-year high Business Insider

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Vladimir Putin’s ‘panic-stricken’ officials in secret bid to end bloody war in Ukraine Mirror. Lambert: “From the wording in the body of the story, I don’t think even the Mirror believes this.”

Irony alert–The American Thinker Forgets How to Think Larry Johnson


Iran at the crossroads of history Indian Punchline (Kevin W)

Big Brother Is Watching You Watch

Police Used a Baby’s DNA To Investigate Its Father For a Crime Wired

Pompeo Sued Over Surveillance of Assange Visitors Consortium News (furzy)

Imperial Collapse Watch

Chris Hedges: The Final Collapse Consortium News (furzy)

Trump Raid

JOHN KIRIAKOU: J Edgar Hoover’s Evil Brainchild Consortium News

Why the Case Against Donald Trump Remains Incomplete Jonathan Turley

US justice department opposes release of Donald Trump search affidavit Financial Times. Predictable and sadly not unreasonable.

The horror of people willing to die for Donald Trump Washington Post (furzy). Pearl clutching in a headline! Well done!

Trump now claims FBI agents seized three of his PASSPORTS during the Mar-a-Lago raid Daily Mail. Resilc: “Red is “official” not dip. Normally you have 2. Blue normal and black dip for travel in and out of assigned post.” DoJ says they don’t have them. I could see an FBI agent having moved them by accident or design within Mar a Lago. But (from Li, yes I know Breitbart):

Taylor Budowich, the former president’s communications director, shared an email from Jay Bratt, the top counterintelligence official in the Justice Department’s national security division, confirming that three passports were seized in the raid and that they would be returned to the former president soon.

“We have learned that the filter agents seized three passports belonging to President Trump, two expired and one being his active diplomatic passport. We are returning them, and they will be ready for pick up at WFO at 2 PM today,” the email to Trump’s attorneys read.

Justice Department Accused of Taking Attorney-Client Material at Mar-a-Lago Jonathan Turley (Li)

Trump Should Be Prosecuted. So Should Other Elites Who Have Flagrantly Broken the Law Jacobin. Aside from this being wishful thinking for anyone but Trump, there are also statute of limitation issues. But still:

Last week, an ad featuring Dick Cheney slamming Trump for his January 6 antics went viral, despite the fact that Cheney is best known for two things: being part of the Republican ticket that, unlike Trump, actually successfully stole an election, and lying the country into an illegal war that killed at minimum 4,598 Americans and 185,000 Iraqis.

Antisemitism Once More Dan Rather and Elliot Kirschner (furzy)

Other Trump

Ex-Trump Org. official Allen Weisselberg expected to plead guilty in tax case NBC. Is he falling on his sword rather than flipping? Article notes no criminal charges v. Trump.

The Trump Convert Who Looks Like She’s About to Unseat Liz Cheney Vanity Fair (furzy)

Our No Longer Free Press

Criminalizing Holocaust Denial Sets a Dangerous Precedent Plebity (Mark W)

US Bans Export of Tech Used In 3nm Chip Production On Security Grounds The Register

Right to Repair

Harley Threatened to Void Warranties Over Aftermarket Parts Jalopnik (resilc)

A New Jailbreak for John Deere Tractors Rides the Right-to-Repair Wave Wired. Kevin W: “Related article at

Money Won’t Solve America’s Power Grid Problems OilPrice (resilc)

Guillotine Watch

NIMBY Marc Andreessen Gives WeWork’s Adam Neumann $350 Million to, Uhh, Solve the Housing Crisis Vice. Resilc: “All involved should become shark food ASAP.”

Class Warfare

DeSantis says teaching requirements are ‘too rigid’ as Florida moves to let veterans without degrees teach Yahoo. Resilc: “How to kill other students 101.”

AT&T Workers Fight Return To Office Push: ‘We Can Do the Same Job From Home’ Guardian

Labour Staging a Comeback Valdai Club (Micael T)

Antidote du jour (Alan T):

And a bonus (Ignacio):

And a second bonus (guurst):

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. griffen

    Florida is not alone in attempting to address a teacher shortage. However, and by comparison, I think Arizona* was covered on last night national news (ABC) they are wanting to expand their teacher roles for individuals with a minimum of 5 years’ expertise in the specific field.

    Someone with an Accounting or Finance background and 20+ years of experience, well they would have a healthy dose of basic to complex math skills. Perhaps not a fit for teaching the AP calculus level, but these are real world skill sets.

    *And if not, still applicable. By comparison I’d prefer someone with practical skill sets and a bachelor’s teaching than basically anyone with an associates or a half completed degree.

    1. The Rev Kev

      An advantage with those vets becoming teachers is that they can handle themselves in case of any trouble. And if a student gets way out of line, then can lean over them and say-

      ‘I don’t know who you are. I don’t know what you want but what I do have are a very particular set of skills. Skills I have acquired over a very long career. Skills that make me a nightmare for people like you.’

      Then let that kid fill in the blanks. (53 secs)

      1. LawnDart

        Re; DeSantis says teaching requirements are ‘too rigid’ as Florida moves to let veterans without degrees teach

        Resilc: “How to kill other students 101.”

        No no no– there are other useful skills we can bring to the table. The military survival schools/SERE training can impart lessons very applicable to homelessness, getting interrogated by police (or hiding from them), or simply getting by in an “you’re on your own” society such as ours (basic first-aid as healthcare, for example). Hell, even something as simple as basic training experience can enable a vet to demonstrate how intimidation and coercion may be applied in order to properly manage a work force… …I am sure that there are other, non-lethal lessons we can teach the kiddies.

        And think of all the fun new stuff we can let the kiddies do during R&R, formerly known as “recess”– they can run stairs, play cards and…

        1. Jonathan Holland Becnel

          2 things I’ll bring as a Vet with absolutely no teaching experience:

          1: School Roof Jump School with parachutes made from local resources.

          2: How to avoid being labeled a Right Wing Extremist!

      2. Earthling

        I have a more cynical approach; they want more drones in classrooms trained to follow orders without question. The teaching ranks are thin because only subservient types tend to stay on in a system which is often run senselessly, and the sharper or more independent thinkers tend to find a better place to work.

        1. hunkerdown

          Agree. That’s how labor classes are created throughout history: strategic privation and dependency formation by the middle class acting on their ideals.

        2. scott s.

          Here, from what I see JROTC programs are appreciated. But for teaching, my experience is a large number of career enlisted have Instructor Training certification in their CV; it is a prime area for shore duty. Though military methods of instruction “Tell them what you’re going to tell them, tell them, then tell them what you told them” might not work so well. I do know someone who went through a “troops to teacher” program. Had an MS in Mechanical Engineering and was hired to teach HS physics. I think a couple of methods classes and classroom management would get you good to go.

      3. Synoia

        The tip to tail ratio in modern militaries is about 10:1. This means for every combat solder these are 9 support soldiers.

        It is more probable that the threat would be understanding and explaining military documentation or paper cuts. /s

    2. CanCyn

      The problem with hiring experts in a subject area to teach is that they may not be able to teach particularly well. Not that I think using former soldiers to teach is a good idea either – although they may be a good solution to the school shootings crisis?? There is not doubt that credentialism has taken over the world but at the heart of a lot of those credentials is some real and useful education. I am a big fan of apprenticeship – go back and forth between school for theory and the job for practice and experience. I can’t think of many careers or jobs that wouldn’t benefit from this approach. Teaching is a talent and while educational theory has gone done some weird paths, in the end, there are those who better teachers than others – and many of them are not high academic achievers.

      1. jsn

        And if the subject area expertise is state directed violence, maybe being a lousy teacher is fine.

        It’s hard to see how society recovers from what “public education” is becoming.

        1. hunkerdown

          Most likely it is taken over by foreign capital and run as a slave camp until the batteries run out. The best hope is to leave sand in the gears by teaching kids the law of Jante, to sabotage anyone who believes in elitism. Once they have been completely ruined for idealistic myths, there is nothing left but material cause and effect, and their own desire to keep eating.

        2. ambrit

          Hmmm…. “Society,” as in Thatcher’s famous, “There is no such thing as….”
          Somehow, Thatcherite is very close to Banderite, both linguistically and socio-politically.

      2. Lemmy Caution

        The DeSantis plan involves granting qualified veterans a temporary teaching certificate while they continue to work toward their full professional certificate.

      3. Carolinian

        they may not be able to teach particularly well

        Doesn’t all teaching involve a great deal of on the job training? While most teachers these days likely have those salary enhancing education degrees it used to be that public school teaching was the fallback for humanities majors with no particular expertise in education. I think it’s somewhat unfair to bash this move in Florida.

        1. Lemmy Caution

          Many states are grappling with severe teacher shortages. Calling the DeSantis plan “How to kill your fellow students 101” is a lazy cheap shot.

        2. Maxwell Johnston

          During my time in the army (and I doubt much has changed), it was normal for sergeants and junior officers to give classes to their troops. Hands-on classes on non-theoretical subjects. A sergeant retiring after 20 years in uniform has probably taught in more than a hundred “classrooms” (and certainly has an ability to maintain discipline), even if not in possession of a masters degree in education. All politics is local and I know nothing about Florida politics, but I don’t think this idea is necessarily all that bad.

        3. scott s.

          It used to be that teacher training was the purview of the state normal school system. Normal schools I think were more hands-on oriented than theory as they instructed to the norms. Then they had mission creep and became “state teacher colleges” and “state universities”. Schools of Ed were looking for legitimacy in that expanded academe and developed their system of advanced degrees and continuing ed with help of state and school board mandates.

          I think the normal school system is closer to the military training commands process for creating instructors. While folks tend to focus on recruit training (boot camp) there is much more going on in the services’ schoolhouse.

      4. griffen

        I have some anecdotes from a niece who is qualified to teach, recently finished her Master’s in the past year I believe. A local elementary school district, and she has described a certain hell of trying to run a classroom. Could be the socio-economic demographics at play in this particular setting. Not high school, not junior high school. Not a poor county either, likely a well funded county school system in South Carolina.

        It’s certainly true, not everyone is cut out for the classroom.

        1. skk

          I can only imagine. While I could teach math and computing, I can’t stand the idea of an unruly classroom. And since sending kids out of the classroom and perhaps school is not an option, I’d choose to send myself out saying “I don’t need this shit”.

          1. ambrit

            I’m old enough to remember my middle school having a roving Vice Principle who carried a big paddleball paddle with holes drilled out of it in a grid pattern. He would “swat” recalcitrant students with it and the parents were fine with it. Parents who were not fine with it were steered towards private academies for their little darlings.
            When integration began in earnest in Florida, we had an influx of students from the absolutely worst neighborhood in Miami-Dade. We were not ready for the culture shock that integration brought with it. From conversations with students from ‘Overtown” I learned that the culture shock went both ways. Those students had grown accustomed to a certain lawlessness in their former schools. That Vice Principal one day calmly hit a bussed in student “up side the haid” with the edge of the paddle because the student pulled a gun on him. This was seventh and eighth grade level. Nothing happened to the Vice Principal. The student recovered and went on to “fight another day.”
            The point here is that the PMCs of today are similarly clueless as to the trouble coming their way as the “deplorables” gain a head of steam in their anger and rage.
            One fact to remember is that there are a lot more “deplorables” than PMCs in America.
            Stay safe, wherever you are.

    3. XXYY

      Being able to teach something is not just a matter of knowing the subject matter. You also have to know how to teach! That includes maintaining control of the classroom, maintaining the interest and respect of your students, presenting complex material in an understandable and properly paced way, delivering instructional material at the right level for your students educational development, knowing what’s going on with each of your students and having a willingness to engage individually, and all the laws and regulations associated with being a teacher in a state regulated classroom. It also requires the ability to work constructively with fellow teachers and the school administration.

      The idea that you can take random people, whether subject matter experts or not, and put them in front of a classroom needs to go away.

      1. Discourages in WI

        When I was young (late 1940s) there was a looming teacher shortage. They dealt with it by recruiting people with college degrees to enter teaching. My mother, who had a 5-year degree in nursing which included a BS, was able to take a short training course, and then go into the classroom to teach. She also then had to take the required education courses over the years to get the coursework necessary for teacher certification. Turned out she loved teaching and was very good at it!

    1. The Rev Kev

      Read earlier today that there was an attempted act of sabotage in Russia itself-

      ‘The Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation prevented an attempt by Ukrainian special services to prepare a sabotage and terrorist act in Volgograd Region, at a facility of the oil and gas complex, as a result of a set of operational and investigative measures’

      The attack was planned by the Ukrainian special services and carried out by members of a right-wing radical group who got Swiss-cheesed for their efforts- (1:22 mins)

    2. Sibiryak

      More Ukrainian sabotage admitted (RT)

      Ukrainian saboteurs have blown up high-voltage power lines used by the Kursk Nuclear Power Plant, Russia’s Federal Security Service said on Tuesday.

      The plant is located in Kursk Region, which borders eastern Ukraine. The blasts, which occurred on August 4, 9 and 12, “led to the disruption… of the functioning of the nuclear power plant,” the FSB said.

      1. skk

        I listen to free audiobooks about the Eastern Front of World War II, 8hrs x 4, and all these names are so, so familiar to me, in quite a different context. Names like Kursk, Donbass, Dneiper, Kharkiv, Mariupol and so on. Its an eerie feeling, having all those coming back yet again in a war context, an artillery fight at that.
        One can see why Russia would both regard Ukraine as “one of us” in one context and still fighting against it, but also in some ways with one handed.

    3. Stephen

      So much of the the collective west seems to be moving to brand Russia as a terrorist regime.

      But the collective west supports terrorism of this type.

      Hypocrisy is clearly a feature of the collective west, not a bug.

      I think Russia is bad at PR aimed at western populations. But their PR aimed at the governments of the Global South seems to work just fine, by the way. Ultimately, that will matter more.

  2. flora

    Re: T’s passports

    “The Justice Department informed Trump’s team Monday that agents gathered the former president’s passports and are obligated to return them, and that officials are also reviewing seized materials that may be covered by various privileges, multiple sources told Just the News.”

    Unseal the afidavit. (The raid is starting to look like a fishing expedition.)

    1. flora

      About attorney client documents; T is suing Hills and DNC and Comey and others (case filed in March this year).

      “Former President Donald Trump filed a sprawling federal lawsuit on Thursday against Hillary Clinton, the Democratic National Committee and 26 other people and entities that he claims conspired to undermine his 2016 campaign by falsely tying him to Russia. ”

      Considering the way this raid was handled and the scope of what was taken, I can’t dismiss Kunstler’s question: “The idea is to tie up all those documents in a legal dispute about declassification so they can’t be entered in any proceeding.”

      It might well have been only the ususal bureaucratic ham-handed bungling.

      Unseal the afidavit.

      1. flora

        Adding: per Turley, appoint a special master. (Unless the FBI wants to keep all the docs – including attorney-client docs – in legal limbo for as long as possible. )

    2. fresno dan

      (From the Turley article) Section 793 was cited as the basis for the 2016 investigation of Hillary Clinton in her email scandal. Clinton gathered and transmitted classified (including “top secret”) information as secretary of State. She and her staff also were criticized for failing to promptly supply evidence. Nevertheless, then-FBI Director James Comey declared that “although there is evidence of potential violations of the statutes regarding the handling of classified information, our judgment is that no reasonable prosecutor would bring such a case.”
      I think its a lot worse than a fishing expedition. The fact of the matter is that many people who violated classified material handling laws spent time in prison. The problem of all this is that the American mythology of equal justice under law is no longer tenable. This is very hard for me to do, but I no longer believe the dems are better than the repubs, no longer at least equal to the repubs, but are worse. Which didn’t use to strike me as possible.

    3. hunkerdown

      I want Trump to change his name to Emmanuel Goldstein so we can skip about 40 minutes of this movie.

        1. hunkerdown

          So many elements are there: The Two-Minute Hate, retconning the record, capitalism is socialism, absolute private property is democracy. They’re either extremely uncreative or they’re doing that “predictive programming” thing.

    4. The Historian

      Be careful what you wish for. Other than satisfying our prurient curiosity, why do we need to know who ratted Trump out? And is our curiosity worth destroying that person’s life? After all, there is nothing we can do about this whether we know who did it or not. And it will have a chilling effect on any other person who may have knowledge about a particular politician that actually might matter to us.

      If anyone has a solid reason for why this affidavit should be released (other than curiosity), I am definitely open to hearing about it, because right now, I just don’t see one, but I know there are probably things I haven’t considered.

      In any event, both sides have gotten what they wanted out of this story. Trump got a raise in his ratings and the Democrats are happy because they’d rather run against Trump than DeSantis. That’s all that matters to them. Meanwhile, all the really important stories about what is happening in this country are being put on the back burner, if they are even being covered at all.

      Even those progressive sites that claim to be ‘different’ from MSM are now covering this story just like the MSM, and that completely disappoints me. I am so glad that NC gives me enough other things to read and think about and isn’t Trump Trump Trump all of the time!

      1. flora

        You seem to make a lot of assumptions about what is in the affidavit. I’ll go with Turley on this matter.

        1. flora

          adding: Let me put it another way. Imagine the shoe is on the other foot. Imagine that a GOP pres and his appointed DoJ head sent an FBI raid on O’s home to carry away boxes of docs under exactly the same circumstances. I think all of us here would be very upset by such a raid. The same questions would be asked, starting with: You were in cordial negotiations with [O] over return of documents, so why not first send a subpoena for the remaining documents you decided you still required?

          1. The Historian

            To be honest, I wouldn’t be terribly upset if any of them were raided – I can’t imagine any of them as honorable people. So yes, if the shoe were on the other foot, I’d feel the same way. My point is that I think whistleblowers need to be protected and shouldn’t be exposed just because of our curiosity. And you are right, I am assuming there is a whistleblower – which is a big assumption, I know.

            1. flora

              I’d rather not be the “collateral damage” in such a case. Living through the Gov. Brownback “real time experiment” was enough. / ;)

        2. The Historian

          Granted Turley is right that we don’t know the basis for the raid. He gives as his reason to unseal the documents that basically it would stop speculation – as though that were possible in this atmosphere! And the rest of his argument does not depend on knowing the basis, but on the documents collected. And I think his arguments are reasonable.

          But since Trump’s lawyer(s) were willing to swear that there was no marked classified documents at Mar-a-Lago, how else would the FBI know that such documents existed without the help of some insider? How could they convince Wray to go forward with this, not to mention a judge? And what will happen to that insider? or any other insiders?

          But say there was no whistleblower, and this was a wild hair by the FBI based on a false representation (ala the Steele Dossier), will it change how the FBI does business? Or anything else?

      2. hunkerdown

        Yes. Why shouldn’t people who perform partisan intrigue have their lives ruined for wasting my time with their noisy LARP? The same goes for every partisan shill and war monger on Twitter causing every kind of mass theater. These are people who ought to be transpersonally excluded from the discourse for their inafantilism alone.

    1. Lex

      It might be a Russian Olive, but there’s so much dew set and light refraction that it’s hard to say.

      1. digi_owl

        For some reason i initially thought the moose had gotten itself lost on the African savanna because of the tree shape.

      2. Copeland

        I also thought Russian Olive, not only due to appearance, but we also spent a week on the Rocky Mountain Front Range in Montana earlier this month. We saw thousands of Russian Olive…and one big bull moose.

    2. juno mas

      Okay, here goes my analysis of the tree in the photo:

      The setting appears to be the American West (massive mountain in background) and the Moose is standing in a broad plain so my guess is Montana.

      Zooming into the tree 500% I can see some pinnate leaves (7-9, opposite), leaflets are elongate with apparently smoother edges. The bark is coarse, and the tree branches close to the ground and again re-branches randomly throughout the tree crown. It appears to be 30-40 ‘ tall (maybe taller).

      These botanic characteristics makes me believe it is a Green Ash (Fraxinus pennsylvanica). Likely introduced, since I don’t believe it is native. YMMV!

      1. Copeland

        Hmm, I do not see pinnate leaves after zooming. They look simple to me, like Russian Olive. Good call on Montana though!

      2. Greg

        As a big fan of dichotomous keys and similar resources for species identification, I just wanna say I love your work here.

        1. juno mas

          Thanks. It’s part of my profession. The tree is definitely NOT Russian Olive (Elaeagnus angustifolia). The tree is too tall. The photo clearly shows a tree with compound leaves, with opposite, entire, leaflets (7-9). RO is a small tree, has simple leaves and is mostly found in riparian areas.

          It may not be a Green Ash, but it is not Elaeagnus.

          Understanding botanical terms and using a dichotomous Plant Key is great fun while walking through life.

  3. fresno dan

    JOHN KIRIAKOU: J Edgar Hoover’s Evil Brainchild Consortium News
    There was literally nothing good about COINTELPRO. It was illegal. It was unethical. It was immoral. It was used to prevent Americans from exercising their constitutional rights. It was a dark period in American history — one of the darkest in modern American history. Our government owes it to the American people to lay the information bare. All of COINTELPRO should be declassified. Bobby Rush’s bill would do that.

    I say would, rather than will, because this bill has an almost zero chance of passing through both houses of Congress and being signed into law by the president. That it was referred to a subcommittee in May and has had no subsequent action is akin to a death notice.
    I doubt more than one repub is actually really concerned about FBI abuse. I doubt Trump knows about COINTELPRO, and if he did, that he would not care because he agrees with the idea that the FBI is to control the dissidents, not HIM. But IF there are more dems concerned about FBI abuse, there would never be enough to really reform the FBI. Its all sound and fury, signifiying nothing…

    1. Mike

      Looking through the lens of cointelpro is how I have thought of the hunter Biden stuff, why would they release the info or press charges? It’s a perfect control mechanism over Joe Biden. Same way I think about trump raid, if they can find something what will their goal be, press charges on him and stop him from running? Or hold it in case he wins and hold as leverage? I have no idea but i think the Fox News people are kidding themselves if they think the FBI is a weapon used by the Democratic Party, I think the FBI has their own agenda. A lot of democrats still remember what the FBI did to Hillary right before the 2016 election.

      1. Carolinian

        And what is that agenda if not partisan? For Hoover it was about maintaining the power of the agency he mostly created as well as protecting his own private life. Although I am beginning to wonder if our bureaucracy across the board isn’t suffering from the same disease. Fauci, the FDA, the Justice Dept, the State Dept–all seem to have their own permanent and ongoing agenda that would be threatened by someone vowing (just words of course) to “clean out the swamp.” The partisan angle is that the Dems are the pro government party and the Repubs are the opposite–one of their few differences these days.

      2. jonboinAR

        Agree. They probably can exert some control over President Joe Biden. To what end, I don’t know.

    2. marym

      Some history:

      Bobby Rush was Deputy Minister of Defense of the Illinois chapter of the Black Panther Party. His apartment was raided a day after the Dec. 4, 1969 raid when Chicago cops, reporting to the Cook County state’s attorney, with information from an FBI informant, assassinated Fred Hampton and Mark Clark.

      “When the COINTELPRO files became public, [attorney Jeffrey] Haas, PLO [People’s Law Office], and his Panther clients immediately suspected that the Dec. 4 police raid had been part of this program…As part of their civil rights lawsuit, they filed numerous motions requesting all FBI files relating to the Illinois Panthers and COINTELPRO. After repeated attempts by the defendants and Judge Parry to cover up the FBI role, eventually a few explosive documents were made available.”

      He’s been in Congress since 1993. Obama tried to primary him in 2000 and lost.

  4. Tom Stone

    I’m so old I can remember when Donald Trump posed an existential threat to the World because he might start WW3 out of sheer incompetence.

    1. The Rev Kev

      I’m so old that I remember there was talk about denying Trump access to the nuclear football codes in case his fat fingers accidentally started WW3. And for bonus points,it was reported that a major factor in that FBI raid on Trump’s home was to find nuclear codes, I kid you not. So either what they said was total bs or else they have never changed those nuclear codes since the days of the Eisenhower administration.

            1. Jeff W

              Actually, the “lowest” possible Social Security number 001-01-0001 was issued to Grace D. Owen of Concord, New Hampshire.

              The Social Security Administration site gives the not-straightforward background on that number:

              The Social Security numbers were grouped by the first three digits of the number (called the area number) and assigned geographically starting in the northeast and moving across the country to the northwest. But if you look closely at the distribution pattern you will see an apparent anomaly. The lowest area numbers are assigned to New Hampshire, rather than to Maine, even though Maine in the most northeasterly of the states. This was apparently done so that SSN 001-01-0001 could be given to New Hampshire’s favorite son, Social Security Board Chairman John G. Winant (Winant was the former three-time Governor of New Hampshire). Chairman Winant declined to have the SSN registered to him. Then it was offered to the Federal Bureau of Old Age Benefits’ Regional Representative of the Boston Region, John Campbell, who likewise declined. It was finally decided not to offer this SSN as a token of esteem but instead to issue it to the first applicant from New Hampshire.

              That applicant happened to be Grace Owen (who later appeared on the US TV show I‘ve Got a Secret with her secret being her history-making Social Security number).

              1. Omicron

                I received my SSN while working in Maine, so it begins 007. As a result, when I start reciting my number no one ever believes me….

                I will probably expire before the popularity of James Bond flix does.

      1. Carolinian

        to find nuclear codes

        We have these things now called Xerox machines and pencils also work. It’s unclear how seizing documents that are in Trump’s possession is an urgent national security need. That claim is probably cya hooey and it really was a fishing expedition to find something, anything, on Trump. This is how the original Russiagate investigation worked as well.

        Lawfare is the new Deep State regime change playbook. You accuse the desired target of corruption rather than assassinating them. See Brazil/Car Wash.

      2. scott s.

        A lot of misinformation floating around out there from not understanding NC2. Here is an overview and here

        Also as concerns technical data about nuclear weapons, Atomic Energy Act at 42 USC defines a type of data called “Restricted Data” which is outside the EO classification system. See

    2. Bazarov

      Memories are short: the assassination of General Soleimani was an insane provocation by Trump and a very scary, tense moment. I remember feeling nauseous when I heard about it and thinking “this could be it, the spark that ignites World War 3!”

      1. anon in so cal

        Journalist Aaron Maté and others documented how General Milley tricked Trump into assassinating Soleimani.

        1. Bazarov

          Trump pulled out of the nuclear deal, endorsed a destabilizing “maximum pressure” campaign against Iran, supported the Saudi war to the death in Yemen, and approved Soleimani’s assassination. His position was clear–irrational and very dangerous escalation. It’s a black mark on his foreign policy record.

          The buck stops with the president.

        1. Bazarov

          Ali Khamenei’s website posted a video about assassinating him on a golf course in revenge:

          These are quotes from President Raisi during the two year anniversary remembrance, as reported by Reuters on January 3rd, 2022:

          “If Trump and Pompeo are not tried in a fair court for the criminal act of assassinating General Soleimani, Muslims will take our martyr’s revenge.”

          “The aggressor, murderer and main culprit – the then president of the United States – must be tried and judged under the (Islamic) law of retribution, and God’s ruling must be carried out against him.”

  5. The Rev Kev

    “Antisemitism Once More”

    Been avoiding commenting on this mess till it sorts itself out more but will have a go about this one. Trying to raise the antisemitism card is really not cutting it much anymore as most people really don’t care. But I will be lazy here and take a quote from Kunstler who is really following it-

    ‘The choice of going to federal magistrate Bruce Reinhart for the Mar-a-Lago warrant sure looks crude and desperate. Only weeks ago, he was presiding over the Trump v Clinton lawsuit. How did that even happen, given Mr. Reinhart’s role defending Jeffrey Epstein’s associates — many of them Clinton-connected — in the 2007 sex-trafficking case? And only after the spectacularly weird act of switching sides from the federal prosecution team to Epstein’s defense team. Not to mention Mr. Reinhart’s record of public statements denouncing Mr. Trump. There are twenty-five other magistrates who rotate their duties in the Southern District of Florida, why pick him?’

    Yeah, it looks like that it was not only a fishing expedition but they lined up the person to issue the fishing license as well.

    1. Smith, M.J.

      As a retired magistrate judge familiar with criminal duty rotation in federal courts, I can state categorically that Kunstler is off-base here.

      First of all, there are only 16 magistrate judges within the Southern District of Florida, not 25. More importantly, only 3 are based in the West Palm Division, where Mar-A-Lago lies. As a general rule, any search warrant application must go to a judge based in the division where the search is to occur. The duty judge assignment schedule is posted in advance, so prosecutors do have a limited ability to judge shop, but the available pool here was only three, not 25. So whatever other shenanigans DOJ may be guilty of here, judge shopping is an unlikely one.

  6. OIFVet

    Re The New Statesmen: ‘In the grip of overlapping crises, Europe faces a leadership vacuum’

    Two quotes show what the intent of precipitating the war in Ukraine was:

    “But the war in Ukraine has marked the collapse of Berlin’s long-standing policy towards Russia, weakening its legitimacy and its ability to offer solutions or, indeed, leadership.”


    “Rightly or wrongly, the perception that he is soft on Russia has undermined him and his “strategic autonomy” agenda – Macron’s belief that the EU needs to grow a strategic brain and military muscle to match its global importance – with Poland and the Baltic and Nordic member states who consider themselves party to the conflict with Ukraine.” 

    Well, mission accomplished: the EU is neutered and safely under US control for the foreseeable future. Interesting that the second quote dovetails with something that I said yesterday: the Eastern European tail is wagging the dog in the EU, and rather to its detriment. Now, David expressed doubts about the extent to which the EU elites are bought and paid for by the US, but in the case of Eastern European elites it is beyond doubt at whose employ they work. In retrospect, Bush’s New Europe vs. Old Europe quip in the run up to the Iraq War can now be seen as a division that was cultivated and exploited by the US to keep the EU on the straight and narrow, a policy whose culmination we are currently witnessing and for which provoking the war in Ukraine was a necessity.

    What boggles the mind is how easily the Western Europeans rolled over to become an economic and sovereign roadkill. Macron ain’t much but if there was anything I could agree with him on was making the EU an independent entity with its own interests, policy, and muscle. That was unacceptable to the US and the UK and they used Ukraine to stick a fork in the EU. I suppose we deserve what we get, however I see a blowback which the geniuses in the US and the impotent EU leaders have not considered and it won’t be pretty.

    1. Carolinian

      EU elites are bought and paid for

      Michael Hudson has said that some of the Euro elites are literally bought and paid for. But I’m not so sure that the Ukraine mess was part of a plan. It could be that our own elites saw Ukraine as a big piggy bank and Russia as an even bigger piggy bank if they could just get rid of Putin. It could be that some of our elites like Blinken and Biden are not very smart. We here in the hegemon live in a bubble.

      1. Nikkikat

        Blinken and his cohorts are idiots. They are Clintonites. I think you are correct. This has been the culmination of their dream of stealing the resources of both Russia and Ukraine. They do not care the damage and ruin they cause. They think no more of Europe than any other countries they have destroyed.

        1. drumlin woodchuckles

          Including America itself, what with NAFTA, WTO membership, MFN for China, WTO membership for China, etc.

    2. Ignacio

      Once upon a time, OIFVet, by the 50s in the previous century, when the Roma Treaty was signed giving birth to what today is the EU, one of the objectives of it was to avoid future wars by the magic of cooperation and interdependence with common policies. Remarkably with Common Agricultural Policy as a core of the project. The EU expanded and grew from the 6 original to the current 28-1 = 27 if I am calculating correctly. Of these some are large and others small and one of the original worries was to be sure that the smaller wouldn’t be ruled by the larger to become mere appendixes.
      All this has changed and now what matters the most is the monetary ring to rule them all and what can be seen as an insatiable Commission in search for more and more power. The rejection of the neoliberal EU constitution by the French was not a random effect but the crude realisation of the direction taken but it did not avoid the firm march of the EU to something very different. Similarly, Brexit was almost certainly a consequence of the same even though pushed by elites that are more extreme neoliberalists.

      In this political environment it is no surprise that, having been abandoned old ideas on cooperation, the neoliberal EU (Macron amongst the most neoliberal in the club) totally aligned with neoliberal US waging a proxy war against Russia. As a matter of fact it doesn’t make any sense the affirmation of such regional power in a neoliberal world.

      What I find the saddest thing about all this is the realisation of the final death of politic diversity in the hands of neoliberalism. There is no longer left and right and former supposed leftists are now amongst the most rabid anturussians.

    3. Kouros

      What are the chances that Germany’s Green Party is a fifth column of the US, cultivated and grown by oe or more three letter agencies?

    4. hk

      Poland and the Baltics as a sort of Trojan Horse into Europe, perhaps? (Although they aren’t quite the main drivers of all the things going haywire.). None of them were “European,” in the sense that they saw a socio-economoc integration centered around French-German (and with Italy and the Benelux as junior partners) cooperation as their future (the original idea for what would become the EU). Rather, they have always been “anti-Russian” above and beyond everything and would have done anything to harm Russia, including subvert the “European project” if that would hurt Russia. So if Russia is to be European, Poland and Lithuania cannot exist in a meaningful sense. That was true at the time of Peter I, Catherine II, Alexander I, or Alexander III And it is still true today, apparently.

    5. Bugs

      This has been a long time coming. The argument was always either “wider” or “deeper” union, with France pushing for deeper but having to toe the line. Stretching out the EU to 28 members was a project to weaken the center, where consensus could be made. This was the overt policy of GB and openly encouraged by the USA, for the result we are seeing today. Saddling us with the likes of Poland, Slovenia, Croatia, Bulgaria, made the EU an untenable entity.

    6. Sibiryak

      in the case of Eastern European elites it is beyond doubt at whose employ they work. In retrospect, Bush’s New Europe vs. Old Europe quip in the run up to the Iraq War can now be seen as a division that was cultivated and exploited by the US to keep the EU on the straight and narrow

      I think it was Rumsfeld who made that quip, but in any case I agree with you completely.

      1. Nikkikat

        I was thinking the same thing. Old Europe/New Europe comment from Rumsfeld. Wasn’t that because they were not really on board with committing more troops to the Middle East wars the Bushes loved so much.

  7. Alice X

    Chris Hedges: The Final Collapse

    Unfortunately, there is little to disagree with. We are doomed and there is no way out.

    1. jr

      I had a conversation recently with a liberal progressive friend who chided me for sending him too much bad news. It was that nuclear war PSA that NYC put out, “You got this!”, that had soured his day. He was depressed!

      When I pointed out there practically isn’t any good news anymore he clucked and said that as a student of history I should know that there are upswings and downswings to US history. I replied that behind all of that is climate collapse. His next email changed the subject entirely.

      I find these days I don’t have a lot of patience with those who try to find the bright side of things. It’s fine to enjoy what is enjoyable but to ignore the dire is sad and undignified. I prefer to take reality as it comes and to avoid that pathetic form of existential arithmetic that looks for the silver lining in every hurricane.

      I was pleasantly surprised the other day to see I had received a text from an old friend whose number I had lost. I hadn’t talked to him in years and it was really wonderful to hear his voice. We spoke of the world and we agreed it’s in a terrible place. We also agreed there is little to do about it except keep our heads down and take our joy where we find it.

      1. Mike

        Many people think they sound “realistic” when in fact they just sound nihilistic. Nihilism I’m sure is one of the many scourges effecting our culture right now.

        Go to the rest of the world where they are most likely worse off than you and a realistic, but “go with the flow” attitude prevails.

    2. juno mas

      Actually, there is a way out. As discussed in another Link article, there is migration. (Unfortunately, the available locales will not accommodate the current population.)

      That is essentially what happened at Cahokia (formerly St. Louis) Mounds. As Hedges indicates the ancient native society was located at the confluence of three large rivers. It was a modest regional “climate change” that created the conditions for massive river flooding of the area and the loss of the community food sources. (The proles, of course, likely blamed the destruction on the failure of Leaders to do their duty to protect.) So the society migrated elsewhere. The America’s had plenty of space at the time.

      It is important to note that in the 1400’s Cahokia was much bigger than London, England in population.

  8. Devil's advocate

    > Trump Should Be Prosecuted. So Should Other Elites…
    > but … there are also statute of limitation issues.

    Statute of limitation is really a slippery slope, isn’t it? I mean, it (in theory) prevents the courts from being clogged up with (minor?) issues from the past while (again, in theory) motivating police and prosecutors to bring their case in an expeditious manner. But, as with ‘whose ox is gored?’ and ‘the winners write the history’, where do you draw the line?

    For serious crimes, it is difficult to argue against an SoL. Murder, and lesser degrees of homicide; rape, and lesser (sorry) degrees of sexual assault; but where do you draw the line? Why is ‘white collar’ crime always overlooked in such discussions? If a man (hypothetical now) can be charged under #metoo because he touched a woman on the arm at a party in 1981 and she didn’t like it, then why can’t a CEO (or politician) be charged today for fraud or malfeasance or whatever, causing significant losses to many, just because it was ‘too long’ ago?

    It looks to me like this is yet another example of the socio-legal double standard that is accepted nowadays — yes, accepted, in the absence of concerted pushback — in the US and the Western world generally.

    1. chris

      Because you know that’s not how it would be used. If there was no concept of statute of limitations poor people would be blackmailed into all kinds of things due to the threat of prosecution for actions long in the past. The statute of limitations is there to protect people for living under a permanent sword of damocles. If the matter is significant enough, and there is evidence to support legal action, then a complaint should be filed appropriately. If not, then it should be dropped. It is that simple.

      We’re not having problems prosecuting elite criminals because of the statute of limitations on whatever crimes they may have committed. We’re choosing not to pursue charges against elites because we have a corrupt system and captured actors.

  9. Anony

    The Vice article is entirely sourced from Zenz’s organization. The only “damning” part described in the very short and uninformative article is that hackers got access to records for about 2,800 detainees with no details about their treatment or current whereabouts.

    Not sure how this constitutes a smoking gun as the Chinese readily admitted that the reeducation centers existed and that thousands have been channeled through them, they even have tv programs showing the graduates of such programs speaking to their experience.

  10. Jake

    “A New Jailbreak for John Deere Tractors Rides the Right-to-Repair Wave” I can’t find where I read it yesterday, but after jailbreaking the tractors they were found to be running an old version of Linux and the author mentioned concern over John Deer’s GPL compliance.

      1. Carolinian

        That’s a great article

        in reality, the company itself is a dumpster-fire of information security worst practices, whose unpatched, badly configured, out-of-date tractors are a bonanza of vulnerabilities and unforced errors. What’s more, the company – which claims to be staunch defenders of copyright – use their copyright locks to hide the fact that they are committing serious breaches of software copyright.

        In serious information security circles, it’s widely understood that “there is no security in obscurity” – that is, hiding how a system works doesn’t make it secure. Usually, this is understood to be grounded in the fact that if you hide your work, you might make mistakes that others would spot and point out to you:

        Doctorow’s big theme is that DRM merely encourages piracy which the movie industry well knows. Doubtless a big motive behind streaming is to reduce their dependence on the little silver discs. By this reasoning Deere’s only real intellectual property recourse is to lease their tractors rather than sell them.

  11. The Rev Kev

    About those Marangaroo Kangaroos (try saying that five times fast). At the start it says ‘Bitta biffo’ so I had better translate that for non-Antipodean readers. ‘Bitta’ is just short for ‘A bit of’ while ‘biffo’ is slang for an altercation or a fight.

    1. Mark Gisleson

      Actually when I said Marangaroo Kangaroo over and over again it became a Kipling couplet like mantra, hypnotically easy to say.

      Marangaroo Kangaroo Marangaroo Kangaroo Marangaroo Kangaroo Marangaroo Kangaroo Marangaroo Kangaroo Marangaroo Kangaroo…

      Not sure when I started reading these comments but after chanting for a while I see that Water Cooler has been posted.

  12. The Rev Kev

    ‘This morning brought with it the confiscation of solar panels in a village of cave dwellers in the south of Mount Hebron and eight families will have to face the heat of August without water pumps, without fans, without cooling devices and without the possibility to charge ‘

    Otherwise known as Tuesday in Palestine.

  13. Wukchumni

    Chris Hedges: The Final Collapse Consortium News

    Jacqueline & Christy Turner’s tome on cannibalism: Man Corn, after Chaco Canyon was abandoned due to climate change 900 years ago, is quite instructive as to how our polite society will go. All they had was crude weaponry to do one another in, and we have the advantage of having seen oh so many instances of mass murder via gun, so it’s old hat now, no big deal-a normal thing.

    Maybe it’s what the gun nuts want, a society based on violence and the right of might.

    Payback is indeed a bitch, and all those other peoples in the world who died horrible deaths on account of our military industrial complex meddling in their lives, will finally get some closure.

    1. Henry Moon Pie

      Here’s a different take on the same topic from Eric Assadourian titled “Plunging Into the Polycrisis.


      Considering that the longer our current civilization lasts the worse the damage to life and to Gaia will be, perhaps sustaining the current system has little place and we should embrace its unravelling sooner rather than later.

      Of course, there are immediate buts that suggest that’s a horrible idea. For example, all the lives that will be lost when the collapse comes (but then again more will be lost if collapse unfolds in twenty years and global population is nine billion instead of eight and Gaia’s systems are even more degraded).

    2. tegnost

      a society based on violence and the right of might.

      …wait, that’s not what we are?
      That kajillion dollar defense budget funds way more mass annihilation than the “gun nuts” ever will

  14. GramSci

    Re: Machines can now do College Level Math

    But it took them a while to learn it. I’m so old I remember when they were first able to do high school math (1964):




  15. The Rev Kev

    “France supplies mines banned by Geneva Convention to Ukraine”

    Since France signed that treaty in 1996, that brings up the thought that they may be old stock that had never been disposed of and stacked in some old warehouse. That is, until the Ukrainian war came along. But as France has a bit of a reputation for not being too picky who they sell arms to, there is the suspicion that they are still making these things but are selling them to countries where it is still legal to use them locally. Maybe those mines have a manufacturing date stamp on them somewhere to see what the go is.

    1. digi_owl

      Likely. Norway recently agreed to ship a number of mothballed MLRS vehicles to UK, as replacement for some that UK was donating to Ukraine.

      The units had been mothballed since Norway signed the treaty on cluster munitions.

    2. David

      Just in case this puzzled anybody, the “Geneva Convention” mentioned here is not one of the 1949 Conventions normally called that. The confusion (presumably deliberate) is with an entirely separate document, a 1996 Protocol to a 1980 Convention signed in Geneva. These are anti-tank weapons, and it’s most likely that these were exported to a country like Iraq or Syria during the 1980s, and eventually found their way to Ukraine. The Protocol forbids the export of such weapons to other countries, and France acceded in 1998. The Ukrainians are also signatories, and should not have been using them, but the confusion is a nice piece of propaganda for the Russians;

  16. Alice X

    Trump Should Be Prosecuted. So Should Other Elites Who Have Flagrantly Broken the Law – Jacobin

    The Liberal dilemma, Espionage Act bad, bad! Don’t prosecute Assange!

    Oh wait, they’re not paying attention to him. Though:

    Espionage Act bad, bad, but prosecute Trump with it anyway.

    Aargh! One can be in the uncomfortable position of having Rand Paul agree, abolish the Espionage Act.

    1. Alice X

      Put another way, the Democrats were fine with the Espionage Act when Obama used it more than any previous President. However, Obama did not prosecute Assange.

      The Republicans were fine with the Act before and when Trump sought to prosecute Assange under it. Until it is now turned on Trump. Hypocrisy is the tribute vice pays to virtue, or something like that. Abolish the the Espionage Act!

    2. Carolinian

      Hear hear. Woody Wilson also gave us the origins of the FBI when he wasn’t praising the Klan. FBI = White Supremacy? Any stick to beat a rogue bureaucracy.

  17. fresno dan
    Normally, a plea deal signals progress in a larger investigation — a sign that pressure has convinced someone to flip on a larger target. Last night’s news out of New York suggests that someone’s given up — but it’s not the defendant. Longtime Trump Organization senior exec Allan Weisselberg will take a plea deal that will land him a few weeks in prison, but won’t get his cooperation in Manhattan’s investigation of Donald Trump
    Either Trump is a legal mastermind with the most mastererfully prescient legal tactics and strategy EVAH, to defeat the arrayed and combined prosecutroal power of the most prestigious, experienced, and admired legal minds at both the Federal and State level… or…. and this seems bizarre, even preposterious….he’s innocent. Wow…

  18. Basil Pesto

    That Yarmuth clip is… good?! encouraging?? It’s the hope that kills you and everything, but still.

  19. digi_owl

    “Robot Dog With RPG Strapped to Its Back Demoed at Russian Arms Fair Vice (furzy)”

    Recently saw a few videos of a similar robodog with a multi-round grenade launcher on its back. This time from China.

    Sadly i can’t link to a source, as the twitter account has since gone private.

    1. Nikkikat

      FAA understaffed for years. Can’t even imagine how bad it is now. Good friend was air traffic control and retired last year. Most of the recruits never make it thru the training school. Standards now much lower for those selected as even the testing has to be dumbed down.

  20. Adam1

    “Fresh cut broccoli is SO much better than what you get in stores.”

    I grew up in rural dairy farm America in Upstate NY. My family only every bought sweet corn when was available locally and picked that day. We also only bought it on the day it was to be eaten.

    I had to marry a city slicker to see someone buy it and then put it into the fridge for use later that week. It was almost horrifying to watch. We’ve been married almost 20 years now and my mind still struggles to watch it take place.

    1. CanCyn

      My Dad was adamant about eating corn very soon after it was picked. In the years when he grew his own, he would put the pot on to boil and then go out to the vegetable garden and pick and shuck the corn and almost run back to house to get it cooking. One of my favourite meals of childhood was steamed fresh corn on the cob (salt & butter) with sides of thick cut fresh field tomatoes and fresh bread. Still a comfort meal of the summer.

      As for broccoli, sadly, none of my local stands seem to offer broccoli. I rarely buy it from the grocery store any more. It always dry and yellow underneath even when the top of the crowns look quite green. This is true even of supposedly Ontario grown in season. Frustrating and not very tasty.

      1. marieann

        Broccoli is an easy crop to grow in the garden, but it it also an easy crop for the worms of the cabbage butterfly to eat. They get right into the broccoli head and then one finds them at the dinner table.
        This is the reason I stopped growing it, it would need to be sprayed to keep it edible.

      2. Anthony G Stegman

        Sadly, most corn nowadays are little more than glyphosate delivery vehicles due to being genetically modified to tolerate heavy doses of the toxin. I no longer eat corn.

  21. antidlc

    Leana Wen, M.D.
    Though CDC has aligned COVID guidance to meet where most Americans are, there are some who promote continued restrictions.

    Are they consistent themselves, always masking indoors, forgoing indoor events/dining, etc? If not, hypocrisy fuels further distrust in public health.

    Can I nominate her for sociopath of the day?

    1. Will

      At some point Lambert will need to create a Sociopath Hall of Fame (Shame?) just to give others a chance at winning the daily prize.

    2. curlydan

      why the hell does she and others think that the CDC should be our friend (“meet where most Americans are”)? If the CDC lived up to its name, then people would say “they’re annoying as hell but normally right”. And we’re a long way from there…

      1. chris

        Yeah, this.

        It’s like Dr. Wen and others think they’re in the business of selling indulgences to the wealthy faithful among us :/

    3. Tom Stone

      Wen already won Sociopath of the day, I’d like to nominate her for a different award that is restricted to those in Health Care, “The Joseph Mengele Award” which comes with a $1,000,000, 000 honorarium.
      Zimbabwe Dollars,of course.

  22. Will

    re Canada’s public healthcare system buckling under the strain of Covid

    Don’t worry folks, we have a solution. Free markets!

    It was already bubbling under the surface before becoming more prominent

    But Covid really helped accelerate the innovation

    Of course, must give credit where credit is due. The well worn strategy of underfunding and understaffing over the years by Liberal and Conservative governments set the stage. Can’t blame them really. With the example of access to the best healthcare in the world just south of us, what responsible political leader would not steer the ship straight down? Can only hope that they don’t waste a perfectly good crises to do what must be done.

      1. wilroncanada

        Dr Brian Day is Past President of the Canadian Medical Association putting a lot of emphasis on turning a lot more of medical care over to the private (fat pockets) sector, with a lot of help from south of the border. Bad ideas have no borders, and propaganda by the wealthy is universal.
        He was also helped in his efforts by BC’s former Premier Gordon Campbell, who championed the idea while in office, that privatizing more medical care would “improve care for everybody.” Grifters gotta grift.

  23. John Beech

    I don’t especially like our governor (DeSantis) but he’s not wrong in his approach to easing the teacher crisis by opting for former military.

    As it happens, after selling my first business about 40 years ago, and after kicking around and growing bored for want of something to do for six months, or so, I returned to university (I’m an engineer) where I easily attained state certification as a secondary education math and science teacher.

    While a few years of that disabused me of the idea (loved teaching, but couldn’t adequately provide for my family), my point is, as the son of a Command Sergeant Major as well, one thing I already knew before learning to become a teacher was how the military teaches. The military teaching model, at it’s most basic, is . . . tell you what I’m going to teach you, teach you, then tell you what I taught you.

    Interestingly, within education, while the parlance is different, it’s unsurprisingly similar in effect. Meaning within education, an ‘advance notifier‘ stands in for ‘tell you what I’m going to teach you‘.

    Yet both are the exact same thing, letting students know what’s coming in preparation for the actual teaching, itself. That, and soldiers are told over and over about this teaching process, using these very words! Added to which, as a soldier advances, e.g. before advancing to First Class from Private, and from PFC to Corporeal, etc. the best teachers are what’s actually being selected for (Darwin would be proud). Plus, in addition, there’s one other characteristic being selected for that’s not obviously present within the animal kingdom, leadership.

    Bottom line? I’ve heard of worse things that what DeSantis has in mind, which is granting a teaching certificate to experienced military personnel now in civilian life. As for the aspect of imposing discipline, which The Rev Kev astutely brings up, yes, that certainly will be part and parcel of what’s going to happen by putting leaders of men in a classrooms. Of course, in today’s woke-parlance, I mean men ‘and’ women.

    Not that this (discipline) will be a bad thing – except – we do have an issue with parents who themselves lack discipline. Basically, babies having babies creates progeny, which are similarly undisciplined (heathens?). With military-experienced instructors in the classroom, that ‘will’ change. And in my opinion, for the better.

    What won’t change? We need to reevaluate our property tax structure to better pay educators. For example, property rates are unequal. For example, in Florida, those who move to the state and buy a home worth $400k pay a LOT more in tax than those who have been here 20-years and own a similarly valued $400k home. Put that to a vote and it’s unlikely there’s a snowball’s chance in Hell of people voting for higher taxes – unless – the issue is couched in the language of fairness and paying teachers more. Maybe.

    Also, at present there are VAST swathes of land deemed special in their tax treatment. For example, stands of timber (which are quite valuable), are taxed at a rate FAR below that of residences. Ditto grazing land. While inherently fair in principle (no roads, sewage expenses, etc.), these rates are excessively low because they’re set by special interest lobbyists (meaning by these powerful landowners).

    Added to which, the rules are very lax. Meaning, fence it in and drop a cow on it (there are companies whose sole purpose is to rent cows for the purpose) and presto! Now the land qualifies for the reduced rate . . . even if it’s within a residential area! I kid you not because I’ve been here about 20 years and I observed this very thing happen with a 40 acre plot within the city where the owner had a few goats on the land and paid a dirt cheap rate. Now the land has been sold and developed into a commercial plaza paying a MUCH higher rate. Yet the land was significantly more valuable all those years but artificially valued in a way to greatly reduce the tax rate. How was that fair to the neighbors since this land was well serviced by roads, electricity, and sewage? It wasn’t so in effect, all the neighbors subsidized that one land owner.

    Sadly, it’s unlikely our state legislature (owned, just as our national ones are), and controlled by lobbying-interests, will take the bull by the horns. However, the major point is, we can find a way to better pay educators if we find the political will. Of course, had we done that there’s every possibility the teacher shortage would never have materialized in the first place!

    Although, of course, there’s now COVID-19, but now I digress.

    1. c_heale

      Not sure that military personnel do make good teachers. Discipline in schools is more difficult than that in the military imo.

  24. Kouros

    RE Cuban blockade

    A very nice historical dramatization of the Trojan war, using Iliad as a source, is “The Song of Troi” by Colleen McCullough. It is really good.

    In those barbarous times, of bronze age repute, the 20 years long siege of Troi is explained only by the fact that a gate of the city was always left be for the supply with provisions from the hinterlands…

    But then, the Homeric heroes wanted glory on the battlefield, obtained by their own sweat and blood (a thing that Agamemnon is not very good at and signals the precursors of the PMC, limp, cowardly, and greedy and spineless and immoral).

    The US is exactly that, an immoral entity, where the biggest product in its stores are hypocrisy and bull manure, more than an army of Heracles could ever clean in a lifetime…

  25. Lexx


    I’m waiting for the dog groomer to call and tell me I can pick up our dog, and while I’m waiting I’ve lined up the ingredients for the last batch of jam of the season – cherry almond. Late in life we noticed that a little of that jam and butter on a croissant (perhaps chocolate) and a hot cup of coffee was a very tasty way to start the day.

    We don’t grow any fruit but strawberries and it’s only when you grow your own fruit that making jam makes sense, otherwise there are a lot of good low cost jams on the market. “I’m so old” I can remember when it was pretty much Smuckers. So when I can jam, given the expense, I usually go for something I can’t buy, at least not locally… not even Stonewall Kitchens.

    Two favorites I’m repeating this year are Strawberry-Fig, and Plum-Blackberry-Vanilla. The two new ones are Cherry-Almond, and Peach-Ginger (from ‘The Red Truck Bakery’ cookbook.

    I made Tomato-Basil jam last year because I kept running across recipes for jam using tomatoes (as though they were a fruit… what?!) and curiosity got the better of me. That turned out to be very good but slow to catch on mentally and we still have enough for another year.

    I’m wondering what jams/jellies do y’all put away in your pantries, why, what the source of the recipes are, and maybe how long you’ve had those recipes? Have you modified them over the years?

    1. Revenant

      Mulberry! Morus nigra. The fruits do not keep or transport well and the season is short so jam is the wine-dark way forward.

      Quince! Quince jelly is great.

      I have not made any but, having discovered Bonne Maman Rhubarb jam in France on holiday (apparently available in England but I never noticed), I am thinking of making rhubarb jam.

      1. Lexx

        I can remember when Bonne Maman took up very little real estate in the grocery stores. I imagined then that it was purchased by fancy people who talked about their European vacations, and used the jars after they’d eaten the last of the jam as drinking glasses, like ‘french jelly jars’.

        Now Bonne Maman takes up a lot of room on the store shelves here and it’s chiefly Bonne Maman I’m referring to when I say I make the jams I can’t buy. There’s raspberry in the fridge now! BM is good jam (a bit spendy) and as it has gained market share and such variety, motivated a lot of canners to retire their kettles and turn in their spurs. Why heat up your kitchen in the summer when you could just buy a good jar at Krogers? And besides, it’s pure sin in a glass… carbs!

        I haven’t tried mulberry or quince, and somehow rhubarb season comes and goes by without celebratory note in our house. There are two other berries I read about but have never seen fresh anywhere – gooseberry and currants. Cookbook writers write about them like the berries are common in their neck of the woods. I think of them as those berries in photos from yesteryear.

    2. CanCyn

      I made strawberry jam last year, Canadian Living magazine recipe. I like a loose almost saucy jam so I left out some sugar. It was good. But, while I am an adventurous cook & happy to experiment and riff on recipes, canning and preserving intimidates the heck out of me. My Mom and Dad made strawberry jam, a couple of different kinds of chilli sauce, pickled beets, zucchini relish and dill pickles. I will always regret not joining them in the kitchen to learn the processes. People who can and preserve look at me like I’m nuts when I talk about being scared of the recipes and process. My girlfriend’s husband makes raspberry and strawberry freezer jam. He insists it is easier than cooked jam but I find it too sweet. My strawberry jam last year was good but so stressful, I have not tackled anything this year. I can’t explain the fear and can’t get over it.

      1. wilroncanada

        My wife is a (mostly) self-taught expert. She cans apple sauce and pie filling, pears, plums, jams–including grape, raspberry, cascade berry, blackberry, fig, and probably others I’ve forgotten. The jams are all low sugar, but even so I don’t eat them (sugar content). We give away a lot..

      2. Lexx

        My mother after years of putting up jam, tried making freezer jam and declared it superior. She said the taste was fresher, more like the fresh berries, and she was right.

        I can because I make several kinds of jam and don’t want to give over the freezer space I might use for a more high value item like meat.

        It’s pressure cooking that makes me nervous and anything involving tomatoes, all that high pressure steam and the possibility of botulism. Still put up salsa though, can’t resist every effort to put away that flavor of summer. Tomatoes are so bland in winter.

    3. Late Introvert

      Blackberry freezer jam is the, uh, jam.

      We have grapes this year so I’ll get some grape jam too. They didn’t fruit the last two years.

      1. Lexx

        Blackberry is my favorite, but… and this is the picky part, the preference of a connoisseur… the jam or crumble must be made from the native berries of Washington state, or possibly Oregon but that’s just a guess; I’ve never hunted for berries outside of Washington.

        I’ve heard rumors that Rocky Mountain blueberries are delicious. I’ve haven’t seen them or talked to anyone who has tried the berries fresh or preserved, so they remain an undiscovered treasure.

    1. hunkerdown

      …failed, ill-advised experiment?

      …parcel of incorporeal property of no exclusive value?


      …right-click away?

      …all of the above?

      1. jr

        I think “incorporeal property” is a big piece of it. It’s the cool and sexy, hip and in the know influence of virtual living. One, in a sense, owns a piece of the future. How little do they grasp how apt that actually is…

        1. hunkerdown

          … a way to buy personhood, a title, a Name?

          It’s like the Melanesian kula trade but where digital monumentalism replaces remembering and market ceremonies replace ritual journeys to neighboring islands. It will be interesting to watch the social experiment where self-identities in some kind of sandbox can be so trivially held or disposed.

  26. Karl

    RE: China is threat to U.S. Empire, Not the U.S. (Caitlin Johnstone)

    I loved this concluding summary (an epitaph of the human predicament):

    Things you can make money out of:

    Finite commodities

    Things you can’t make money out of:

    A thriving biosphere
    Energy sources you can’t control

    While we use money to value things, we will never be free.

    1. c_heale

      I have no idea why the elites are so sanguine about keeping their money in the event of catastropic planetary collapse. The internet and all banking systems will collapse too.

  27. Karl

    RE: Pro-Trump candidate seems poised to defeat Lynn Cheney in Primary

    The rule in Wyoming is that the primary is what matters, because the general election always goes to a Republican. But this year might be different?

    I wonder if Cheney could do what Murkowski did in Alaska after Murkowski lost a Primary: she ran as an independent in the general and kept her seat (she may have been a write-in candidate, a very difficult feat). I think a lot of Democrats, Independents and anti-Trump Republicans in Wyoming would vote for Cheney in the general. On the other hand, Cheney might not want another two years facing death threats.

    It’s 2.5 months to the general election, a lifetime in Politics. I can imagine, by then, a few Trump indictments might help an Independent Cheney win. I haven’t a clue about the Wyoming electorate and so can’t gauge how feasible this might be.

      1. Karl

        It turns out Murkowski did win in the general election via a write-in campaign. Cheney could mount a similar campaign. The poor odds didn’t deter Murkowski. A lot of voters admire displays of grit like that.

        1. hunkerdown

          That would be illegal per state law as Matthew said.

          22-5-302. Unsuccessful primary candidates precluded.

          An unsuccessful candidate for office at a primary election, whose name is printed on any party ballot, may not seek nomination by petition for the same office at the next general election.

  28. LawnDart

    Useful intel, but can’t link because Skynet zaps them [a Russian site that I visit almost daily now has an English-language mirror, so no hassle with translation, but links to that get obliterated too– I can’t provide a link to any of their articles as an NC commentator, but maybe you guys can if you see something of interest]. Here’s the main page:

    https://en [dot] news-front [dot] info

    While the West is looting and carving-up the remnants of a certain failing Eastern European apartheid state, Russia is set for a win with their new found friend, Afghanistan:

    Afghanistan awaits Russia’s second coming

    The industry minister recently said in an interview that Afghanistan was looking to buy one million barrels of Russian oil and that natural gas was of equal interest. The extreme importance of the issue is underscored by the words of Minister Azizi that Afghanistan is ready to pay for energy supplies in any convenient form, including direct commodity barter.

    The Afghan minister in his speech, as if in passing, mentioned that the whole Afghan people are very much looking forward to increased cooperation with Russia. In a very Eastern allegorical manner the hope was expressed that Moscow will help to build houses, schools, hospitals and other necessities, because it has done so before.

    As for natural gas supplies, the Afghans are again asking Russia, thanks to its own authority, to push through the completion of the TAPI gas pipeline (Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India). In 2019, the laying of the pipeline stalled precisely because of the political and military instability in the region. Simply put – because of the growing hostilities between the Taliban and the pro-American authorities.

    The fact is that infrastructure construction and rehabilitation projects are worth many billions of dollars and are backed by state financial guarantees. In fact, this is a state order paid for by another country. This scheme is extremely interesting and profitable, which is why it has been implemented by the United States government in all countries where American bombers have flown in for the purpose of introducing democracy.

    To conclude, apart from the strategic security of its southern border, Russia could gain a foothold in this previously highly problematic region.

    As for the forgotten word “barter”, we suggest that all skeptics study the school geography course and get acquainted with the list and amount of Afghanistan’s mineral resources, which in almost pristine condition are still waiting for its miners.

    Again, sorry I can’t provide a link, but I guess we aren’t supposed to read or even think about certain things.

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