Links 9/28/22

Patient readers, we had to remove two cross posts that we were not authorized to use. Please do not compound the error by reposting archived versions. I removed two threads that did so, besides speculating on the causes of the removal. Apologies, and thank you! –lambert

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

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


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

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

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China’s Mars rover finds hints of catastrophic floods Nature

NASA crashes DART spacecraft into asteroid in world’s 1st planetary defense test (videos)

‘Exceptional’ fossil suggests early birds were brainy Science

The Unease You Feel Is the Fed Pushing Into a Recession Bloomberg. This Powell dude is one busy guy:


Well, naturally!


This Climate Tech Boom Is Recession-Proof Bloomberg

Electric cars could break the grid if future drivers stick to today’s routines Nature

Maine Voices: Kennebec River dam debate hijacked by red herring Press Herald


The COVID-19 Booster’s Public Relations Problem ProPublica. To me, the “public relations”/”messaging” frame makes assumptions about public health decision makers I am not sure that I share. Worth a read, however.

Association of SARS-CoV-2 Infection With New-Onset Type 1 Diabetes Among Pediatric Patients From 2020 to 2021 JAMA. Enormous cohort study from EHRs: 1 ,091,494 pediatric patients: 314,917 with COVID-19 and 776 ,577 with non–COVID-19 respiratory infections. From the Discussion: “In this study, new T1D diagnoses were more likely to occur among pediatric patients with prior COVID-19 than among those with other respiratory infections (or with other encounters with health systems). Respiratory infections have previously been associated with onset of T1D,6 but this risk was even higher among those with COVID-19 in our study, raising concern for long-term, post–COVID-19 autoimmune complications among youths.” “Children don’t get Covid.” Remember that one? Commentary:


How companies can ensure a Covid-free workplace FT

Is the next pandemic brewing on the Netherlands’ poultry farms? Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists (KS).


China growth to fall behind rest of Asia for first time since 1990 FT

China Reins In Its Belt and Road Program, $1 Trillion Later WSJ

‘Completely underinvested’ China woos foreign investors but still withholds what they want most South China Morning Post

Tokyo Olympics bribery arrests widens to third Japan sponsor AP

The Koreas

A palate cleanser (SD):


Neal Stephenson holds that the transmission of Hebrew scripture is the paradigm for “informational hygiene” in Snow Crash, but at “zero data loss” woodblock carvers beat scribes.

The Bezzle

Cruise’s Self-Driving Cars Keep Blocking Traffic in San Francisco The Drive

How Kenya Became the World’s Geothermal Powerhouse Reasons to be Cheerful


3 ways these latest Iran demonstrations are different to past protests The Conversation

In wealthy Dubai, poor get free bread from machines France24 (Re Silc).

Dear Old Blighty

Kwarteng’s policies won’t get inactive Britain working again FT

IMF urges Truss to reverse top rate tax cut in rare intervention Telegraph (BC).

PM chief of staff Mark Fullbrook no longer paid via firm, says No 10 BBC. Oh.

European Disunion

How a party of neo-fascist roots won big in Italy AP. Commentary:


New Not-So-Cold Cold War

Ukraine ‘referendums’: Full results for annexation polls as Kremlin-backed authorities claim victory EuroNews

Ukraine’s president: No talks with Putin if its land annexed AP

* * *
Germany Suspects Sabotage Hit Russia’s Nord Stream Pipelines Bloomberg. No duh.

CIA warned German government against attack on Baltic Sea pipelines Der Spiegel

Baltic Pipe: Norway-Poland gas pipeline opens in key move to cut dependency on Russia EuroNews. It opened the same day Nordstream 1 and 2 were blown up. Odd!

[ulp] But do check the source:


* * *
The usual suspects:

TUCKER CARLSON: What really happened to the Nord Stream pipeline? FOX. Suspect: USA.

The Nord Stream Whodunit National Review. Suspect: Russia. Thread on the seabed and Russian submarines:


Another suspect. France. Thread:


See also Helmer’s post today. Suspect: Poland.

* * *
Explosive-Laden Drone Found Near Nord Stream Pipeline Pipeline Technology Journal. From 2015, possibly still germane.

BALTOPS 22: A Perfect Opportunity for Research and Resting New Technology Seapower. From June, possibly germane.

* * *
Draft evasion in today’s Russia Gilbert Doctorow

Ukraine war: 100,000 Russians flee to Kazakhstan amid military draft South China Morning Post

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Should America Go All In on Ukraine? The American Conservative

Preparing for the Long War Project Syndicate

New poll signals Americans are growing tired of support for Ukraine without diplomacy as the war against Russia drags on Insider

Poll: Americans support quick diplomatic end to war in Ukraine Responsible Statecraft

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EXCLUSIVE: British father, 30, SPLITS from Ukrainian refugee accusing her of ‘irrational behaviour, not handling her drink and stabbing a wall’ – just four months after he dumped his partner of 10 years and mother of his two children to be with her Daily Mail. Was she a comedian?

Inside the Ukrainian Counterstrike That Turned the Tide of the War Time. And the cover:


Ukraine’s next President?

Normalizing fascism:


An “emotional moment.” Oh.

* * *
Europe’s future, from friend of the blog Philip Pilkington:


Rudy, you’re out of your element:


Supply Chain

Gas crisis lands LNG cargo market in hands of energy giants Hellenic Shipping News

Checking Back In On Southern California’s Containership Backup gCaptain

Our Famously Free Press

The Washington Post Dabbles in Orwell (excerpt) Matt Taibbi, TK News. Amazing, even for the intelligence community assets at WaPo (who are not the entire institution, fortunately, as the drastic rewrite of the embarassing first version shows). Commentary:


This tweet summarizes the debacle, but as usual, Taibbi documents his stomping in excruciating detail. I do quarrel with the headline: “dabbles,” as opposed to “bathes regularly”? “Soaking in it”?


University of Idaho releases memo warning employees that promoting abortion is against state law Idaho Capital Sun

Realignment and Legitimacy

‘Take your a** home!’ Heavily-armed black rights groups march through Austin chanting anti-illegal migrant slogans, demands Biden ‘close the border’ and calls for ‘reparations to be paid NOW’ Daily Mail (Re Silc). I notice that the only wide-angle shot shows low numbers.

Class Warfare

Worker protests at airports spread nationwide over staffing and pay WaPo

Seattle Dispute Disrupts US West Coast Port Labor Talks Maritime Logistics Professional

GM delays return-to-office mandate after employee backlash MSN

Saul Kripke obituary Guardian (AL). On “naming and necessity.”

How Big Is Infinity? Quanta (DL). Fun!

Antidote du jour (via):

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. Antifa

    Joe Biden stumbles and slurs
    You must guess at just what he infers
    He sets things in motion
    Down under the ocean
    But does he intend what occurs?

      1. Mikel
        “President Biden asked for the late Rep. Jackie Walorski to identify herself at a Washington event Wednesday, forgetting that the Indiana Republican died in a car crash last month.

        Biden made the embarrassing error while thanking bipartisan members of Congress at a nutrition event near the White House.

        “I want to thank all of you here, including bipartisan elected officials like Representative [Jim} McGovern, Senator [Mike] Braun, Senator [Cory] Booker, Representative Jackie — are you here? Where’s Jackie? — I think she was going to be here,” the president said….”

  2. griffen

    I see the Ministry of Truth has been served orders of a prompt rewrite for previously documented events. Taibbi is just on fire lately. Great time to be living for sure.

    What next. Joe Biden never did owe Americans $600 after all. Access to healthcare was all we were ever promised.

    1. Tom Stone

      have had more than one Bidenista tell me that the
      “New FDR” never promised $2K checks to the American People.

      1. ambrit

        When ever I said that “Creepy” Joe Biden owes me 600 dollars, bystanders used to laugh or shake their heads. Now, all they do is scowl. The attitude “on the street” around here is becoming distinctly sour.

    2. Arizona Slim

      Access. There’s that word again.

      Oh, speaking of that word, I’m noticing that Mark Kelly sure is getting a lot of mileage out of it in his senatorial campaign ads. He also likes to use that favorite Democratic Party phrase, “fighting for.”

      Slim’s looking to vote third party. Or I’ll just leave that part of the ballot blank. I think the Republican guy, Blake Masters, is a rather bizarre character.

      1. Michael Ismoe

        “Re-elect me. I’m corrupt but he’s nuts!” doesn’t sound like much of a campaign slogan but it will probably work for Kelly.

        1. griffen

          My opponent is an evil Satanist and it is known that said opponent sacrifices baby goats on an altar of blood !! \sarc

        2. Pat

          Sounds like the gubernatorial election in NY, even if the current governor is a guppy compared to the whale our former governor was in the corruption ocean.

    3. deedee

      One thing this Ukraine business has made very clear is that while you can say what you will about US military capabilities (The Saker people, Martyanov, etc. who seem to cling to the naive belief that “winning” is something you do on a battlefield vs a boardroom or behind a gated North Virginia suburb) no nation on earth seems to come close to the US when it comes to information warfare. The bar keeps getting re-set upward or downward depending on where you are situated.

      1. Yves Smith

        The US is “winning” only in its echo chamber. UN votes on matters Ukraine turned from Russia having comparatively few supporters early on to now only US allies voting for the Ukraine position.

  3. zagonostra

    What is the use of NASA developing the world’s 1st planetary defense test when the U.S. is walking right into WWIII that could easily end human existence.

    With the recent referendums over in the Russian held captured/liberated territories and their reabsorption/unification, we are entering into a new phase of the conflict. With many speculating, with good cause (cui bono and comments by former Polish Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski) that the sabotage of the Nordstream pipelines was directed by the U.S., we are reaching a point where every other news story drops in importance.

    If the population/masses don’t start exerting pressure on their elected representatives and the controlled MSM, then NASA should be looking for ways to colonize Mars instead.

    1. hunkerdown

      To secure whatever might be left for the PMC. Simple people will actually believe Zeus thunderbolt myths if that’s all they’re allowed to hear.

    2. Mike

      Agreed, however on a societal level asteroid events are certainly more common than the one in a million year event touted by the likes of NASA. Following something like the Comet Research Group they are narrowing down to serious events possibly being a once in a thousand year event.

      This however was certainly a funding grab, considering momentum-collision problems is learned in physics I and is very simple. These people can plot trajectory accurately enough to hit the darn thing from millions of miles away at those speeds they can predict the results of the impact easily enough…

  4. Sardonia

    Interesting link to Tucker Carlson. He can be an idiot at times, but when it comes to the situation in Ukraine and Europe, he doesn’t sound much different from NC folks – and has the largest audience of any cable new show (even more Democrats watch his show than any other cable news show).

    In this link (I think it was the opening segment of his show last night because it keeps bringing up videos – of the Nord explosion, and of Biden and Nuland threatening to “end Nord 2” previously). With that big of an audience, he walked right to the brink of saying “the US blew this up”.

    I often watch him with interest, because it’s rather astounding that TPTB haven’t gotten him thrown off the air, if not imprisoned, if not…worse. Who the h*** else can get away with saying this, as he did in that link:

    ” If we actually blow up the Nord Stream pipelines, why wouldn’t Russia sever undersea internet cables? What would happen if they did that? What would happen if banks in London couldn’t communicate with banks in New York? Just that one piece of it, leaving aside its potential effects on our power grid, but let’s just say the banks couldn’t communicate with each other for one day. What would the economic effect of that be? We would cascade downward into your house. We can have an actual collapse. We could wind up very quickly in third world conditions. Those are the stakes. Have the people behind this, the geniuses like Toria Nuland, considered the effects? Maybe they have. Maybe that was the point.”

    It takes some stones of brass to say that on Mainstream news in the US, I’ll give him that….

    1. Antifa

      The gang who blew Nord Stream to hell
      Didn’t cover their tracks very well
      ‘Move fast and break things’
      What if disruption brings
      Blowback that no one can foretell?

      1. JBird4049

        >>>What if disruption brings
        Blowback that no one can foretell?

        You mean all the coups, invasions, and wars of more than a century’s worth especially the past thirty years? That disruption? Except for some of the smallest coups in the Americas or the most successfully hidden such as the Indonesian, I can easily find warnings before, during and immediately after each one. And I am probably not trying hard enough for those I am missing.

        The American Empire’s dirty wars have never really been a secret and their blowbacks’ inevitable costs never been completely hidden, but those running the Empire have always chosen not to see the costs.

    2. kson onair

      >It takes some stones of brass to say that on Mainstream news in the US, I’ll give him that….


    3. S D

      “Have they considered the effects?”
      Did the original zealots, who when trapped in a besieged city destroyed the food supply, consider the effects?

    4. Anthony G Stegman

      One must wonder why the gas pipelines were blown up now. They could have been blown up much earlier. Is this the US version of asymmetric warfare. What else can we expect? More Russian infrastructure blown up? How is it that that little man Zelensky from a no account country can wield so much power?

      1. ACPAL

        Germany was beginning to reconsider their decision to sanction Russian gas and this was the US’s message to Germany. Remember the movie “The Godfather” where the guy wakes up to find his favorite horse’s head in bed with him? There are many ways to send a message and ‘make someone an offer they can’t refuse.’ In many ways the US acts like the Mafia.

  5. digi_owl

    Apparently the Baltic Pipe is ahead of schedule.

    Also, the ROV found by the swedes in 2015 was apparently the same type they use for clearing sea mines. So i may well have been one they misplaced during training.

  6. Stephen

    “Another Suspect” re Pipeline pranks.

    Maybe it was SPECTRE and Blofeld. After all, they did steal a nuclear submarine once. Clearly have underwater capability.

    It is about as credible as the emerging (pre-packaged and ready to roll out?) western narrative that Russia sabotaged their own pipelines when they were just getting themselves fully started on unattributable “flow management” negotiation tactics.

    1. The Rev Kev

      You know, you do have a point. This does sound like the story-line for a James Bond film where SPECTRE is being paid to destroy German industry. That 1985 film “A View to a Kill” was where there was a plot to destroy Silicon Valley through an induced earthquake. So having explosives destroy these pipelines for good with everybody pretending ‘Duh. Now how did that happen?’ is worthy of a James Bond story-line.

        1. jefemt

          Between NATO/Ukraine/ Russia Russia Russia, Putin, , the pipeline apparent sabotage, Jay Powell and the Fed, an ‘official’ cryptocurrency/ cashless future, Italy’s choice to the brink of Ella Duce, and a muzzle-defeating Trump… just wow!
          All of the ditherin’s of the clever monkey, the contrivances, the tangled webs…

          The natural weather-born disasters provide some sort of diversionary distraction… wait, are ‘we’ helping contrive Exceptional natural disasters, too?

          Not sure we interpreted the Plagues in the bible precisely. Pogo may have had it right… .

          1. semper loquitur

            “The natural weather-born disasters provide some sort of diversionary distraction…”

            Tucker interviewed a hurricane expert last night. This is going to be very, very bad if his assessment is correct. The guy said there could be 10′ to 12′ storm surges, in Tampa if I recall correctly.

            1. britzklieg

              The storm surge will be in Ft. Myers. Landfall south of it almost surely means Tampa dodged that very dangerous bullet. Still could be massive flooding due to the rain. Here in St. Petersburg, strong winds are blowing through in bands and it has been raining (not hard) since 7pm yesterday. I live in a flood zone and the roads are normal for a good downpour, rain gutters fluid and not overflowing. Other parts of the city are actually more vulnerable, including downtown and the adjacent Old Northeast. Power still on, no interruptions. Worst potential situation will be here in an hour or two.

              1. John Beech

                Tampa Bay – St. Pete would be a tens of thousands casualty event with surge into the 10 to 15′ range and financial losses into the trillion range. Sorry for Port Charlotte who took it in the shorts in 2004 with Charlie ‘but’ better them again than the bay area.

                On the flip side, a trillion in damage would count as a good thing with economists because it adds to GDP. Thought it’s definitely not how I want to USA to add a $1T to GDP, however.

                Anyway, we’re as prepared as we can be for what may still be a Cat 1 when it hits us in Central FL. Water levels are already high in the retention ponds as it’s been wet already. Just drove to the boat ramp and the Saint Johns is already very, very high (just another foot or so to being in the parking lot). If this one is followed in another week or so by another we’re all going to be in difficulty with water levels. FL may sink beneath the waves!

                1. britzklieg

                  Miracle of miracles, I still have power and believe the worst is behind us. Lucky, lucky, lucky… I’ll be selling the house (family home for 2 generations so lots of memories) before the next storm season, assuming there won’t be another whopper this one, which is still possible. I’d already decided that if I was flooded I wouldn’t repair/rebuild… time to move.

      1. Amateur Socialist

        “We’re all in it together” would make a great campaign slogan. If you could get it past MSDNC watching primary voters.

        1. John Beech

          And here I’ve never even heard of it although Amazon will rent it to me for $4. Enjoyed the trailer and the above section. Last time I was in a theater was to watch Independence Day with the presently disgraced Will Smith (although someone making jokes about my wife would receive similar treatment from me as I’m not really a turn the other cheek kind of guy under some circumstances).

  7. Lex

    Tucker Carlson got banned in Ukraine. I’ll bet Joe Biden is jealous of Ukrainian democracy and its ability to simply ban media personalities and outlets from the office of the president.

    1. semper loquitur

      Tucker made some good points. What happens when a bunch of underwater cables mysteriously snap? He interviewed Tulsi Gabbard later in that show and she pointed out that the one sure thing about war is that you cannot be sure where things are going to lead. Fun times.

    2. Antifa

      Our President’s often uncertain
      Where he is, or who tucks his shirt in
      Joe Biden is hidin’
      Who does the decidin’
      Who’s back there behind the curtain?

  8. Morgan Everett

    I’m not even sure that the National Review writer believed what he was claiming. He could’ve just stopped after “at first glance it seems as if the Russians have no incentive to destroy their ability to tempt Europe with surrendering Ukraine in exchange for turning the gas taps back on this winter.”

    1. Darthbobber

      The people who indulge in these contortions have no business at all mocking the followers of Q.
      When I find myself slogging through such a far-fetched piece of work I tend to visualize George Smiley taking off his glasses and giving that little smile.

    1. hunkerdown

      Renewable isn’t at all the same thing as infinite. Be careful that the virtue signalling doesn’t try to do the thinking.

  9. Wukchumni

    According to the Powell Doctrine-as long as it’s a known known, CBDC Cashabidiol will make all that inflation anxiety go away after Post Traumatic Stock Decline sets in and you wonder when the next hit is coming, utilizing a perpetual notion machine as his dispensary…

    …I have the highest confidence in Jay

    1. semper loquitur

      What does surprise me is that this !diot is happy to broadcast to the world that he is a overstuffed sack of $hit. He abandons his family for this nutbar and allows that to be disseminated. Now he is regretting it and he allows THAT to be disseminated. I suspect some of that social media narcissism at work here, where any chance to get your face on your phone is to be desired…

      1. marieann

        I was just going to post the same thing…he sounds like a bleeding looney…and I am one also for reading the crummy story.
        Just “what in heavens”

  10. Madarka

    Re covid and diabetes. Anecdote, but my previously healthy father developed diabetes after covid got him in 2020. And a whole other host of gastrointestinal issues too.

    As to the pipelines’ explosions, Doomberg had an informative discussion here

  11. The Rev Kev

    “Is the next pandemic brewing on the Netherlands’ poultry farms?”

    (adjusts tin foil hat) Harrumphh! So tell me. Those poultry farms. Those wouldn’t be the same farms that Mark Rutte wants to have shut down to be sold to his banker mates, would it? If so, it would be an amazing coincidence to have a story come out that those farms could produce the next pandemic. Just sayin.’

      1. The Rev Kev

        Also cow farms but I do not think that once they start, they will worry about discerning between the different methane-emitting animals. The point of it is not to go green but is a land grab. Can you imagine how much that land would be worth that has all those farms occupying them at present?

        1. Werther

          That land that has all those farms occupying them… How large do you think it is, Rev? One side of the story is these farm-areas never were economically viable in our western globalist environment. So a competitive edge was sought in intensifying, in efficiency, in mechanization and scientific approaches. Already fifty years ago warning signs were raised… and now we’re stuck with literally all this shit. And practically oncontrollable vulnerability for all kinds of viral and bacteriological diseases. It all seems to coagulate into a mess. But it is autumn. I’m prone on being melancholic. And it was predicted in 1971… We’re muddling in the endgame…
          Oh and the value of these lands… won’t be much in depression time!

          1. flora

            Reducing local food production at a time of rising inflation and shakey long distance transportation lines… brilliant. (not) / ;)

            1. russell1200

              It is similar to the problem the Greens have with peak oil. Peak oil was a green thing at one time. It was why we needed to go to alternatives. But then fracking came along and peak oil was decided not to be an issue.

              Thing is, it is still an issue. And so is global warming. And we are a long way from green energy being a standalone solution.

              There just isn’t an easy way out.

            2. drumlin woodchuckles

              My understanding of livestock production in the Netherlands is that it is almost all super high-density CAFO based on feeding imported hi-carb/hi-protein feed to vast numbers of livestock.

              So it is not producing food. It is destroying food. You have to destroy several pounds of corn and soybeans to get one pound of meat.

              Now, livestock on multi-species pasture and range is a whole different thing. But the Netherlands does not have the room to do extensive livestock on pasture and range, so far as I know.

          2. The Rev Kev

            If we are heading into depression time, then those farms could be quickly converted into better uses such as growing food for the people of the Netherlands instead of the idiotic industrial uses that it is being used for at the moment. So certainly no more using that land just to grow flowers for example. Flora makes a good point about local food production versus long transport lines. In a depression, long transport lines for food may not be feasible anymore.

          3. PlutoniumKun

            Dutch farms are not particularly large. The issue is that most of the land is now used for disposing manure waste from intensively raised indoor animals, fed on crops frequently brought in from Brazil. The Dutch agriculture system manages to be one of the biggest contributor to the destruction of the Amazon rainforest.

        2. Petter

          And, according to a short clip of Dutch farmer talking about the issue a while back, force people to become vegetarian.

      2. PlutoniumKun

        The Dutch proposals were not aimed at any one farm – they were to reduce nitrogen outputs by 70% – necessary to hit EU directive limits on nitrates in soil and water. The Dutch basically have far too many farm animals – mostly fed on imported grain. The soil cannot take the combined manure of all the cows, chickens and pigs. The Directive is based on targeting maximum levels of nitrogen in soil, its up to member states to decide how to achieve the required levels.

        The Netherlands (along with several other EU countries) has dithered on this for years, constantly seeking derogations. In the meanwhile, farmers built up huge numbers of animals, many assuming that the government would either turn a blind eye, or be forced to compensate them for not poisoning the rivers and groundwater.

        1. flora

          I’m not being sly or sarcastic when I note that the impending huge reduction in commercial, chemical nitrogen fertilizer (which requires gas or oil to produce), could be offset using a lot of the farm animal dung. That’s how it was done in the old day, so I’m told. (And one reason small South American islands with huge bird populations and literally mountains of bird guano were prized territories to seize by US and European countries back in the day.) It was only after the discovery and production of chemical nitrogen fertilizer that crop production per acre doubled and then tripled.

          Since chemical fertilizer is being heavily restricted in Canada, the EU, the UK and elsewhere, I think farm animal waste may prove more useful than imagined by the govt planners. Can’t be a vegetarian without vegetables or grains. Sri Lanka is a preview.

          1. flora

            adding, and again not being sly or sarcastic: if NL has more farm dung than can be used for local agriculture in place of chemical fertilizer, there could be a growing market (no pun intended) for dried, heat sterilized, and shipped dung to other countries suffering fertilizer shortages. I am not at all kidding. What else can replace chemical fertilizer?

            1. Wukchumni

              What do 30 million American bison, the completion of the transcontinental railroad, and the discovery of superphosphate fertilizer have in common? A lot, as it turns out. In 1868 they became critical elements in the formation of an entire industry, one that thrived for over 20 years. It helped finance the settlement of the Great Plains, ensured solvency of numerous new railroad lines servicing the settlers, and provided vital fertilizer for crops across the entire continent.

              The confluence starts with phosphorus. Without knowing why, early humans figured out that their plants thrived when they added ground up bone to their seed mix. In 1840, the answer became clear. Phosphate, the P in the NPK that is listed on every bag of fertilizer at the garden center, is crucial for robust flowering, fruiting, and root growth. Bone is an excellent source of phosphate because the chemical notation for the calcium crystal that makes bone strong and hard is Ca5(PO4)3(OH). There are three phosphorus atoms in every molecule. In this form, however, the phosphate is not very soluble, and it takes a long time for a plant to incorporate it.


            2. drumlin woodchuckles

              But if the NL farm animal dung is left over from imported corn and soy fed to the farm animals and the corn and soy is all fertilized with Haber-Bosch Nitrogen, then what happens when the Corn-Soy growers can’t afford their Haber-Bosch Nitrogen?

              Feeding mass quantities of Haber-Bosch Nitrogen Corn and Soy to NL CAFO livestock in order to get some N-rich dung back out seems like a very inneficient way to get N fertilizer.

              In fact, it is just a way to destroy Haber-Bosch fertilizer just as NL CAFO livestock growing is a way to destroy corn and soybeans.

          2. PlutoniumKun

            I think the answer is quite complex – you are correct of course that it seems stupid to have a surplus of animal waste while we still use chemical fertilisers, but the actual biochemical activity of various animal wastes is quite complex, so there is a limit to what you can apply on certain soils in many circumstances. There is a (sort of) explainer here.

            It wouldn’t be an issue if we didn’t have so much of the animal waste, in the wrong place and in areas with the wrong soils. This is basically down to bringing animal numbers up in many areas way beyond the carrying capacity of local soils.

            1. BMW DOG

              I had a farm in a little valley in Nevada where the farms grew alfalfa that was shipped to the dairies in Southern California. One farmer had chicken shit hauled back on those hay trucks that he used to fertilize his fields. Worked great for him and his fields. Other farmers used chemicals.
              They called him “Chicken Shit Hershel”.
              I Think the smartest of the bunch,,,,,

            2. juno mas

              Excellent link, PK.

              While the explainer doesn’t go into great detail, it covers the essentials.

              Fertilizing plants for optimum growth requires lots of knowledge. Farmers in the past gained it through experience; today through Ag Science.

              Optimum plant growth is controlled by soil temp, soil oxygen, soil microbes, soil moisture AND soil nutrients. While available nitrogen (N) is the most consumed nutrient, it is Phosphorus (P) that is the most essential, but least soluble (transit in the soil) of the nutrients. (It does not cycle through various forms like nitrogen.) Potassium (K) is similar to P, but less so.

              As for local soils. Soils in the Temperate Zones , mid-latitude US, are very different East to West (mostly because of rainfall). Soils in the Tropics are totally different.

              Climate change is going to impact agriculture.

  12. Jon Cloke

    A new song I may/may not have written:

    Pack up your Sterling in your old kit-bag
    and smile, smile, smile.
    Don’t let your job or mortgage hear the snag
    Smile boys that’s the style
    What’s the use of worrying
    it never was worthwhile
    2022 or 1992, Tufton Street’s the style!

  13. John Beech

    Of course, the follow-on issue with 100k Russians fleeing to Kazakhstan is they subsequently form the basis for another invasion to protect Russian citizens. Sigh.

    1. The Rev Kev

      What was the American nickname for all those young guys that fled to Canada during the Vietnam war? I think that it was ‘Canadian geese’ – because they flew north. So do Kazakhstan geese fly south? :)

    2. tegnost

      C’mon John…the russian speakers in ukraine didn’t “flee” russia, they had ukraine formed around them, think the state of palestine v israel, with basically the same attitude that the easiest final solution to the intractable problem of russians in ukraine and palestinians in gaza respectively is/was to off them systematically in order to purify the race……..
      !!!Slava something or another!!!

      1. drumlin woodchuckles

        If the Palestinian population in Gaza is being systematically offed, then it should be going measurably down. Is it going measurably down?

  14. The Rev Kev

    ‘The most emotional moment was when we suddenly met released Azov soldiers right inside the main hall on the Capitol Hill’

    This is amazing this, They are actually normalizing neo-Nazis and trying to make them public heroes in the US. What goes through the minds of these Azov guys & gals when they see so many people being absolutely gullible about who and what they are. They must be laughing their faces off. They give Nazi salutes and then tell American audiences that no, it is not a Nazi salute. They are making the signal from the heart to the sun. Maybe a black sun that. And I suppose that all those torchlight parades modeled after 1930 Germany can be explained by saying the participants use the torches to keep warm at night.

    So here is a question. Suppose, just suppose that Al Quada declared Jihad against the Russians and offered to send 20,000 experienced fighters from Idlib Province to the Ukraine to help in the fight using their well know, ahem, tactics. So how long would it be until American politicians invited Al Quada representatives on tours of the Capitol Building and arranging interviews with the New Yorker. Have them do speeches and let them press for weapons to be given them? And 9/11 survivors would be told to suck it up and take one for the team. Tell me that this is not possible.

    1. Lex

      You mean like the 80’s when Reagan had the Afghan mujaheddin to the white house? That was essentially AQ declaring jihad against the Russians. And we already tried it when we sent a bunch of the AQ types who fought in Afghanistan to Chechnya for the first and second (moreso the second) Chechen war. A bunch of those guys are in Idlib right now getting US support and that’s part of the reason Russia has been so willing to be involved in Syria: there are still some scores to settle. Some of the Chechens are in Ukraine and Kadyrov is intent on settling the traditional Caucasus blood feud stemming from the terrorist attack that killed his father.

    2. Wukchumni

      Our fascism is more akin to the Bull Mussolini Party…

      The bronze fasces, representing a classical Roman symbol of civic authority, are located on both sides of the U.S. flag. The original Roman fasces consisted of an axe within a bundle of rods, bound together by a red strap. Over time, the fasces came to represent the ideal of American democracy: like the thin rods bound together, the small individual state achieve their strength and stability though their union under the federal government.

    3. Lambert Strether Post author

      > They are actually normalizing neo-Nazis and trying to make them public heroes in the US

      While simultaneously elevating putative fascists in a “Pied Piper” strategy and demonizing MAGA as fascists?

      At least the Azovs can’t run for office. But they can “serve”, like Christia Freeland.

      Liberal Democrats: “These are the good fascist, because they are ours. See? Some of them are even women!”

  15. Michael Ismoe

    CIA warned German government against attack on Baltic Sea pipelines Der Spiegel

    They should have just shown them the plans.

    1. Skip Intro

      The warning may have been more of a threat:
      “Nice little pipelines ya got there, it would be a shame if anything were to happen to them, what with all the powerful navies doing exercises around there”.
      If both NS pipelines were were under threat of destruction if NS2 opened, for example, it would certainly help stiffen the resolve of German politicians to throw their voters under the bus, behavior that was otherwise difficult to fathom.

  16. Mark

    The thread on the Tripitaka Koreana shows amazing effort, design and engineering. Not only for the tablets…but also in the repository buildings to control humidity and promote ventilation!
    Well with a read.

    1. Lex

      Indeed. Coolest thing I’ve read in a while. The subfoundation construction to manage humidity is genius, like the rest of it. Never underestimate our ancestors.

    2. PlutoniumKun

      Its an astonishing survival, especially given Korea’s history. It seems the Japanese didn’t touch it because they considered it ‘theirs’, and it was also in an area that thankfully evaded the mass bombings and battles of the 1950’s war. Its in a pretty remote area – I passed near it a few years ago (unfortunately, I didn’t know it existed then, I only read about it later) – despite its industrialization, there are still parts of Korea which are not all that accessible and generally its a very untouristed country. Locals all seem to go to Jeju Island, and foreign tourists stick to Seoul and Busan. I hope the place doesn’t get too famous.

      I do worry about the building its in, it looks like a pretty flammable set up, especially if there is a forest fire.

      1. hk

        There is a famous (used to be the case in Korea anyways) story that the temple where the woodblocks we’re kept was supposedly used by communist insurgents during the Korean War (basically, a combination of the remnants of North Korean Army trapped in the South combined with South Korean communists who took to mountain depths). USAF wanted to bomb the place, but South Korean officials and military men unanimously and vociferously opposed it, with a South Korean airman (ROKAF was flying P51 Mustangs supplied by US at the time)volunteering to bomb the nearby area without touching the temple, and his unit pulled it off in a feat of airmanship.

  17. Wukchumni

    Gooooooooood Mooooooorning Fiatnam!

    Hocktoberfest was just around the corner and you knew pawn shops would be busy with all the GI Joes & Janes in alms conflict descending upon their establishments, some in cadence…

    ‘I don’t know but i’ve been told, this is my version of the dole’

  18. semper loquitur

    re: Autonomous road blocks

    “Speaking on the issue, Pusateri stated that “if our cars encounter a situation where they aren’t able to safely proceed, they stop and turn on their hazard lights, and we either get them operating again or pick them up as quickly as possible.”

    So WTF happens when a piece of trash blocks one of these cars and it stops, while an ambulance with a heart attack victim sits right behind it? Does the AI know it can get out and drag the trash off of the road? Can it back up and pull onto the sidewalk to let the ambulance go by? Will the AI coordinate with other drivers to allow the ambulance to go around it? Or does it just sit for 20 (+?) minutes while the guy dies?

    What happens when some Moldavian teenager hacks into the network and commands all the cars to floor their accelerators and locks them there? Or to target pedestrians? Or to converge on the entrances and exits of major thoroughfares in our cities and then bricks them? With the radios blaring “CROSSTOWN TRAFFIC! SO HARD TO GET THROUGH TO YOU!!!” at full volume?

    Or a swarm of hacked cars converges on a tanker truck full of fuel on the interstate? Or a truck of liquid nitrogen? Or a truck of desperately needed parts for something? Or maybe the truck is autonomous and it gets hacked. Imagine a tanker of some industrial toxin diving into a reservoir and popping it’s valves open. Or a truck filled with gasoline ramming through the fence surrounding some key energy grid component and wiping it out with a fireball. Or a heavy hauler loaded with enormous pipe segments plowing into a crowd leaving a game, traveling at 120 mph. Or T-boning a train? Heaven forbid an Acela!

    1. semper loquitur

      Something else from the article just struck me. The radio was playing in one of those cars. I wonder if it was just a blip or if someone thought it would be a good idea to play the radio so as to introduce the idea that the AI was enjoying the music. Trying to humanize the machines. Like the dancing robot videos. I put nothing past the technopaths…

    2. .human

      I don’t know about anyone else, but in my neck of the woods stopping in the roadway for no good reason is a traffic violation. I would like to read of issued tickets, summons for those responsible to appear in a court and maybe even a senseless police over-reaction.

    3. Late Introvert

      Tech Bros think they can write code that drives better than humans. They can do it up until they can’t. All the edge cases are impossible. So, so many edge cases. Including all the ones where humans died under their own control. They never account for those, and that is why they will never solve an unsolvable problem. Crashes happen, and math can not fix it. Entropy.

      I’m all for the idea that tech can solve for car crash, but it just can’t.

  19. Wukchumni

    The elephant in the Florida room is Ian, and what a monster it’s turning out to be with a much larger eye than when Charley done showed up in 2004.

    We really have no idea when a earthquake is due to hit, whereas in the right coast-lower bottom pocket, you know the agent of your destruction days in advance. Imagine not knowing what was coming in 1780?

    Be safe and get the hell outta dodge…

    Great Hurricane of 1780, also known as Huracán San Calixto, the Great Hurricane of the Antilles, the Great Hurricane of the West Indies, and the 1780 Disaster,was the deadliest Atlantic hurricane on record. An estimated 22,000 people died throughout the Lesser Antilles when the storm passed through the islands from October 10 to October 16.

    Coming in the midst of the American Revolution, the storm caused heavy losses to the British fleet contesting for control of the area, largely weakening British control over the Atlantic.

    Florida Room, by Donald Fagen

  20. Jason Boxman

    Covid Vaccines Temporarily Affect Periods, New Study Shows

    Some people experience headaches or sore arms after getting vaccinated. Others may have nausea or swollen lymph nodes. Now, a growing body of research is pointing to yet another potential side effect of Covid-19 vaccines: changes in menstrual cycles.

    In a study published on Tuesday in BMJ Medicine, researchers reported that, on average, vaccinated people experienced about a one-day delay in their periods compared with those who did not get vaccinated. But like other side effects of vaccines, this change was temporary. One cycle after vaccination, people’s periods tended to return to normal.

    Trust women. After there’s a study. I guess.

  21. semper loquitur

    Fun with Science:

    Crapification in particle physics from Sabine Hossenfelder:

    No one in physics dares say so, but the race to invent new particles is pointless

    In private, many physicists admit they do not believe the particles they are paid to search for exist – they do it because their colleagues are doing it


    Tangled terms in AI research: “True intelligence” isn’t consciousness

    Meta’s AI guru LeCun: Most of today’s AI approaches will never lead to true intelligence

    Fundamental problems elude many strains of deep learning, says LeCun, including the mystery of how to measure information.


    LeCun offered a broad overview of an approach he thinks holds promise for achieving human-level intelligence in machines.”

    Best of luck with that.

    1. cfraenkel

      I expect anyone funding AI work would consider consciousness as a flaw to be strenuously avoided. What would be the point in having a car, assembly line or a toaster be self-aware? (what a nightmare that existence would be… cue up any number of SF stories/warnings.)

    2. Jorge

      Professors, originally just MIT, have been selling AI to the Pentagon for 70 years, promising “Robot Soldiers”.

      They finally have created robot propagandists.

  22. Wukchumni

    Soviet commodity traders back in the day had to be really sharp, as everybody in the west knew they were essentially net sellers, but not always…

    In 1972, the U.S. and the U.S.S.R were deep in the middle of the Cold War, but that did not stop the daily business of trade among nations. In fact, given the dicey agricultural policies and poor weather of the Soviet breadbasket, crop failure was not unusual. Soviet agricultural trade representatives often turned to the foreign commodity markets to make up the difference.

    In July of 1972, the Russians began buying up foreign wheat, purchasing 10 million tons from U.S. brokers by August. Richard E. Mooney’s economic analysis in a 1975 issue of The New York Times states that despite receiving reports of crop failures in the Soviet Union and elsewhere, the U.S. government failed to appreciate the significance of the global grain shortage and the effect it might have on the U.S. economy. As federal grain subsidies continued to favor bargains for the Soviets buying American wheat, the price of domestic grain rose sharply, causing a food price crisis back home. According to John A. Schnittker in a 1973 paper for the Brookings Institution, the U.S. government wasted $300 million in public funds and lost the same amount in potential revenue by unwittingly subsidizing the Russian wheat purchases.

    As it turned out, the shortage in Russia was part of a worldwide shortage in grain production that almost wiped out international stockpiles. Clifton Luttrell wrote in the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis Review in 1973 that the U.S. government did not recognize this as it was happening because the government did not have a big-picture view of agricultural output worldwide.

    At that point, sophisticated agricultural monitoring was only in its infancy. According to Gary Weir of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, despite using satellites to photograph grain-growing areas, the resolution was not clear enough to reveal much information on the health of crops, leaving the probable outcomes of Russian harvests opaque to U.S. intelligence. Afterwards, the debacle was nicknamed the “Great Grain Robbery.” To prevent another such calamity, U.S. intelligence began looking at earlier technological research.

    1. PlutoniumKun

      Its clearly part of ‘the plan’ that a massive budget deficit will be the excuse for deep cuts into welfare spending.

      However, even on the Tories terms, its a stupid plan. Even their MP’s are finding the giveaway to the richest earners hard to take and comfortable middle class voters hate to see a weaker sterling (it will make their winter holidays very expensive). The turmoil in the markets is also deeply embarrassing for a party that is supposedly the sensible party of business and sound money when it is so obviously tied to their own policies. And they may well have made an enemy of the Bank by forcing potential rate rises onto it.

      So far, it seems to be a spectacular own goal for them. Not that this will stop them causing even more damage to the structure of the state and cutting welfare in every way they can.

      1. ChrisRUEcon

        > So far, it seems to be a spectacular own goal for them.

        … it can only be such if the Tories suffer consequences … like being voted out of power. Sadly, however, today’s fetid UK Labour party will probably do little in the way of undoing the effects of the macroeconomic violence being committed here. Once again, the worst timeline.

        1. skippy

          the best bit about all this GBP thingy is – Keir Starmer is now saying the Labour party is now the ***sound money*** party in the Blairite tradition … night is day, black is white, sun comes up in the west …

    2. skippy

      September 28, 2022 at 7:52 pm

      Oh I already saw that bit about the Chancellors plea to investors, but, it pales in comparison to when they asked the BOE too do the Treasuries job – just less than a week ago. Wellie I hear you’ll get that after decades of destroying public institutional knowledge because its inefficient[tm] and cost heaps to pay[!!!!!] pubic servants, better to hire private consultancy firms, never mind the incentives to give morons what they want so you keep getting their business … and now what price is being payed by the average brit ….

      Its like someone brought in a private equity mob in to run the U.K. and the currant lot are the dregs of the bottle poured in just before the party is over and all the BSD run off with yonks of cash and assets to more fertile grounds. Might pop around later to grab some bargains … maybe …

  23. Kouros

    Why two links have been removed from yesterday’s main posts?

    You tried to find: how-bad-will-the-german-recession-be

    You tried to find: the-war-on-germany-just-entered-its-hot-phase

    What happened?

    1. PlutoniumKun

      Yves has explained it – due to an error they were put up prematurely without the permission of the original authors.

  24. Mikel

    Polls on Americans war opinions.
    Absolutely meaningless except for the political consultants advising politicians on the next lies they should tell.

  25. Matthew G. Saroff

    Just a note, I googled it, the 70m depth of the pipeline is dive-able, but not by standard diving techniques.

    Some commercial diving techniques, in particular custom gas mixtures as opposed to compressed air, would likely have to be used.

    1. Yves Smith

      I don’t think it’s as uncommon as you suggest. I know hard core risk seeking recreational divers who go to 200 feet. The problem is, as one said, “You start to like it down there” and are inclined to go deeper. He saw some divers at that depth with him show 4 fingers to each other, as in 400 feet. They went down. He went back up. Those two guys were never found.

      1. Matthew G. Saroff

        I not suggesting that it was unusual, just noting that it’s beyond the capabilities of a recreational diver.

        1. Yves Smith

          I indicated that I personally know a recreational diver who more than occasionally has gone to 200ft. And based on his patter, this is not out of band for risk-seeking divers. It’s a dangerous practice, hence more conservative numbers are cited as typical limits.

          I agree it was more likely to have been done by technical divers…if done by divers. I am merely pointing out it is within the range of very aggressive recreational divers.

            1. Matthew G. Saroff

              Surface temperature right now is just under 16°C.

              At 70m, at least according to the Wiki, the temp would be 1°C-10°C.

          1. Matthew G. Saroff

            Ask him how long he was down there. My guess is that he went down to 200 feet and started ascending immediately.

            Between nitrogen narcosis and increased tissue saturation, and hence risk of the bends, being down at that depth for more than a minute breathing air is flirting with death, moreso if engaging in strenuous activity.

            I should note though that one can purchase a UUV for under $5000 US that could get down there, though you would need to make provisions for the charges to be neutrally buoyant to be moved around by those small craft.

  26. John Beech

    Or a ship dragging an anchor. Or an RPV with a charge, no men at depths. Lots of ways this happens. But who benefits. Russia already cut off the gas. One thing is certain, they’re going to have to bless gas to keep water out as that’s corrosive and a danger to the lifespan of the project.

Comments are closed.